Tuesday, January 22, 2013


I am super freaking stoked to tell you guys that we have officially found a place to live that is IN Rexburg (nope, not pregnant...sorry if I got your hopes up).

We signed the lease and put in our deposit today.


No more driving 30 minutes to civilization!
No more having my husband on campus all day long!
No more no internet!
No more having everything close at 6:30!

And now we can start looking for jobs!


But wait! You haven't heard the best part...

...We're moving into a trailer home! In an official trailer park (but like all trailer parks, ours has a much classier name than it deserves)!

We've got the crazy pet dog, the nicer car than is needed, and Ben is growing out a pretty substantial mustache. All we need now is to have a child named Ethel Mae and we will be certified trailer trash!

But really...In all honesty, I could not be more excited. We'll be living pretty close to campus and we'll actually be able to meet people. People! Like who are in the same stages of life as me. And I will be connected to everyone else because we have internet where we're going. And a microwave (yep, we've gone without that too). And a dishwasher. And not that you care to know--but washer and dryer too! (See all the modern conveniences I've been going without??)

So anyhow, that's my exciting news. You can shout hooray for me too.

Friday, January 11, 2013

A Few Faves

So, if you didn't know, Ben and I are now living in Ashton, Idaho (population 1,127, pets included, I'm pretty sure) while Ben goes to school at BYU-I in Rexburg. We want something closer to campus but, for the time being, our cozy cabin-esque house is doing just fine.

However, we don't have internet. So I've taken advantage of Ben having fewer classes on Thursdays and Fridays by coming to school with him. It's a plus in many ways including I get to spend more time with him and less time by my lonesome. AND I get to commandeer his school account and internet usage while he's in class.

As you can see, it's a win-win kind of situation.

Anyhow I figured I'd let you know about my all time favorite relationship building type books because I'm a nerd and I like to spread the love.

Product Details

This book is called "Why We Love" by Helen Fisher. This is more of an interesting read than a self help one. Fisher got a bunch of "in love" volunteers and was able to perform different brain scans to see what part of the brain lights up when you're in love, how long "romantic love" lasts and a couple of tips for maintaining that kind of love. It also explains what happens in the brain when you break up. It's super fascinating and will just make you think, "So that's why I do/have done that."

"Product DetailsThis next book is "And They Were Not Ashamed" by Laura M. Brotherson. In case you can't figure out what this one is about, the subtitle is: Strengthening Marriage Through Sexual Fullfilment. I don't know about you guys, but I grew up in a house where you just didn't talk about sex. It was horribly taboo. This author does a really good job talking about sex tastefully. Brotherson is LDS so she does bring in biblical references as well as modern day revelation that support the sanctity of marriage and the expression of love within a marriage. She definitely brings out the spiritual side. I was really impressed with how much content she has in the book-none of which I found repetitive. She uses really clear examples and illustrations. I personally think this book is a "must own" and not just a "must read." She goes beyond sex and talks about a bunch of other aspects related to strengthening your marriage. Toward the end she actually talks about how it's important to help your children learn about sex from a young age. For parents who aren't quite sure how to teach this to their kids, she actually gives a sort of lesson plan with specific things to say or questions to ask for various age groups. It's really an awesome book. And I think it's a great opportunity for couples to be a little more open about their sexual relationship. Another book along these lines is "The Act of Marriage" by Tim LaHaye. He's Christian (not sure what denomination) so he also brings in biblical references. I personally liked "And They Were Not Ashamed" better just because LaHaye seemed fairly outdated (and maybe that's only because the copy I had was published in like the 70s). Anyhow, either of these books are really great for guys to read, just because they help guys kind of see the girl's point of view.

Product DetailsSorry that was a really long explanation. The next book is "The Proper Care and Feeding of Husbands" by Dr. Laura Schlessinger. First I have to say that my mom was a huge Dr. Laura fan (you know, before she got kicked off the air) and I absolutely hated her (Dr. Laura. Not my mom). I think she's so mean to all of her callers. It drives me crazy. So when Ben suggested I read this book, I kind of ignored him. But one day I got really bored so I opened it and I was floored. This woman gets women. And men. I mean, as I read, I realized that a lot of the things she accused women of doing, I did! I never thought I was a terrible wife, but when I read this book I realized there were so many things I could do better at. The book really helped me to understand the simplicity of men and what their needs are. I really felt inspired to be a better wife. Dr. Laura is to the point and she has really awesome experiences to share. My complaints were that she gets a little repetitive and she refers to guys as "your man" too many times and it got on my nerves (but that's my own personal problem, right?).

Product DetailsI'm not sure if this is available as a book. I've only seen it on CD or kindle. It's called "For All Eternity" by Dr. John L. Lund. If you ignore all the other books I've listed DO NOT IGNORE THIS ONE. It is honestly, one of the best resources out there for married couples. I'm not kidding you. My parents encouraged me to listen to this like 3 years ago. I loved it so much that I went out and bought it cause I was like, "Someday I want a kick A marriage but it won't be kick A unless we listen to this baby every 18 months." Dr. Lund has practiced marriage and family therapy for years. The CD is actually a recording of a 4 part marriage strengthening workshop he taught. It's cool because you can listen to it in parts and he gives you specific things to work on in between each session. He is absolutely hilarious and all his examples are so real. His wife helps him with parts of it. One of my favorite things is that he give some awesome tips on communicating in marriage. Oh my gosh I seriously love this so much! You should go out and buy it now. Or let me know and I will let you borrow my copy. Heck, I'll even buy it for you. That's how much I love it and think everyone should listen to it.

So those are my suggestions for awesome books to read. Even if you aren't dating anyone, you should get a head start on some of these.

Thursday, January 10, 2013

The Truth About Marriage

Are you guys sick of me posting about marriage yet?

But really, I've had the same conversation waaaay too many times and I just needed to say something about it.

When you get married, people love to ask,
"So how's married life?"

Which can be compared to someone asking you how your summer vacation was.

It's like, if you really wanted to, you could dive into a pretty huge spiel about how the day you went jet skiing was epic but how another day sucked because you wasted 8 dollars seeing that really lame movie and then blah blah blah.

But you never do go into that spiel because you know that the person doesn't really care, on a day to day basis, how your break was. Rather, he/she was just trying to be congenial.

So you simply say, "It was great." And that's that.

Which is basically what I say to people who ask how married life is. Sure, I could ramble on about specifics, but I usually answer with a simple:
"It's going well, thanks."

However, far too often, after I make this reply, the questioner will then respond with, "Oh that's good. So many people just say that marriage is hard."

Gosh, I just want to whap them upside the head.

Marriage is hard!

But that doesn't mean that it's not also wonderful and so totally worth it.

So I don't mean to make myself sound like an expert, cause I'm most definitely not. But I have taken a lot of courses studying inter- and intrapersonal dynamics and also relationships. Something I've been taught again and again is the myth:
Happy couples don't argue.

I repeat, this is a myth.

I had a friend who told me, "We've been married for 2 years and we still haven't had our first fight."

Honestly when people tell me they don't  with argue with their spouse, all I can think are that someone's needs are being put on the back burner. Someone is saying, "Oh I guess it's all right" even when it's not.

Obviously, every couple argues differently. And maybe you don't want to call it that. Maybe you like the word "discusses" because it seems like less of a threat. Bottom line is there are things that need to be talked about in marriage. And there most definitely will be things you disagree on and that need to be worked out and compromised.

(Random interesting fact: Some people really do work best with the all-out-screaming-match type fights. These people are drawn to more dynamic situations and actually feel closer to their lover when they resolve and make up.)

Obviously learning how to communicate your needs is crucial and can be something that really brings joy to your relationship.

Gosh, this is just making me want to share all the relationship helpers I've learned and spew information at you...but I'll try to contain  myself...

The point is that yes, marriage is hard. Don't let that be a surprise to you. I mean, once you're married, life still happens. And no one would say that life is easy. It's just that when you're married sometimes your spouse is the one who causes you hell. And sometimes he's the one who helps you pass through the hell with minimal scarring.

So just know that it's hard. And it takes work.

But it is also completely and outrageosly worth it.

(And since you got me going, you can expect a post on my favorite marriage/relationship books and sources. Geez louise--I am such a nerd.)