Tuesday, November 3, 2015

happy halloween

Happy Halloween 2015!! Okay, so I'm a few days late! But still, I had to share a little something something about our day this year so here goes nothing. HALLOWEEN WAS GREAT! We ate donuts + candy and spent the whole day with family. You can't go wrong with that combination unless you get a tummy ache from all the sweets.

This year, we were SO lazy. No costumes until Friday night around 10 P.M. (thanks Target!) and they weren't even costumes... They were onesie pajamas. Hey, we were lucky they weren't just sweats! Zach was Darth Vadar and I was a wookie-woman. So, so comfy!

 ^^ Sworn enemies but still can't keep straight/mad faces for a pic // Zach cuddling sweet Asher boy!

Our sister-in-law, Laurel, came out on Halloween until tomorrow for her friends wedding so we got to see her and sweet baby Asher for a bit while she was here. We sure love those Phil White babies! They are the cutest boys and we love them a whole lot.

^^ And of course, the donut goodness. Last year was my first year helping with this tradition and I loved getting to help my awesome mother-in-law a bit again this year. She rocks!

a weekend getaway to seattle

One of my favorite things to do with my hubby is discuss our future. Set goals, share dreams, chat about where we might live one day. This is a common occurrence since Zach is a smarty pants and wants to go on after his bachelors to get a master's and PhD. It's crazy that right now, we don't even know for sure where we will be next year around this time! What!? Crazy, I know. One thing we have talked about a lot is our desire to one day live in the PNW, specifically Washington. Oh, how beautiful Washington is! Ever since I was little I wanted to live in Seattle, more precisely the Space Needle, haha! We (my mother's Autentico side) have some extended family in the Seattle area and once while we were there for a family reunion, we went up into the space needle and I remember thinking "I'm gonna live here one day." Maybe it was the cafe that had me so entranced with the idea of living there, I mean girl's gotta eat, but you get the idea.

Lucky for us, Zach's older sister and her family live out in the Seattle are so we get an excuse to go visit every now and again. We visited earlier this year around our anniversary and had the best time with our Sparks fam; you can read about that here! This time, we went out and got to go do lots of fun things in the full swing of fall. Okay but really Fall time + the PNW is like WHOA. I loved loved (still dreaming about the trees and cloudy/rainy skies) LOVED it there. Here is a photographic journal of our trip, lots of selfies of/with the girls. We are suckers for those sweet nieces of ours.

 ^^ Okay but really, Zach is so good with these girls, it melts me!

 ^^ Zach's big sis Emily just snapping a selfie at UDubb campus (lookin' good, Em!)
 ^^ Penny is just the cutest, she was covering up the "Ma" part of "MacKenzie Hall because she knew I don't have an "a" in my name!

 ^^ At the Sounders v RSL game in the rain! Chilly but so fun!

^^ Okay this was the funniest ever; after walking back to the car in the rain, I told the girls their hair was crazy! So, obviously, they wanted pictures and could NOT stop laughing at the pictures! So darn cute. 
^^ Leaving was sad because vacation is so good but the grand canyon gave us a nice hello from the plan to make it a little better.

orem high school + my coaching internship

I couldn't let myself finish out the week without posting a little tribute to my Orem High volleyball girls. For my major, I am required to do a coaching internship in the sport of my choosing. Since I have the most experience play volleyball + to this day continue to love it, I chose volleyball. Initially, I was set up with a high school in Springville and was really excited about it! They had a successful program and seemed excited to have myself and the other intern. However, through an unfortunate series of events, it was decided that because of my school schedule it would be best I find another school. Although I was a bit sad, I felt good about the decision made for me to leave. My awesome internship supervisor helped me find a spot at Orem High School and I started soon thereafter.

There were times I was nervous that the girls didn't like me or that the coaches were annoyed by my constant asking of questions, but I always enjoyed my time there. The head coach, Nat, became more than just someone I was shadowing for school but someone I could talk to and truly look up to. The other coaches were also super awesome and I loved being able to shadow them. The girls in that program are some of the most awesome girls I have met! I think they are just so cool and hilarious and I will miss them dearly. Orem High Tigers, I love you!

the moser's visit utah

Over conference weekend, my family came on out to the great Beehive state and it was so fun! I always love getting to see my family so having them out for a few days was so great. We hiked, went to the BYU v UCONN football game, attended the Saturday afternoon session of LDS General Conference and spent lots of time in one another's company. It was a wonderful weekend!
 ^^ Hiking to Stewart falls + accidentally all wearing grey

 ^^ How our selfies normally go: Me smiling and Zach telling me to stop

 ^^ Love my sweet mama!

 ^ Conference in the Conference center first timers!

 ^^ Family selfie trying to get the temple.
I loved all the time I was able to spend with my family. It can be hard living so far away from them but the time I do get to spend with them is always cherished.

wild rice soup yumminess

In my ward, we do this thing called "soup group" where we meet every Friday, a couple ladies bring soup and maybe a few bring bread and we sit, eat + chat. It's WONDERFUL and I love it! It comes around the time fall rolls in and who doesn't love that? It's so fun! Anyways, I made this soup for soup group and everyone loved it so I'm posting my own version of the recipe (I changed it up a bit from the original I got from a friend). I also made this on Halloween for family and doubled the recipe (fed about 15 adults and 6 children) and before the night was over the pot was completely scraped clean! Needless to say, this easy soup is a hit.

Creamy Wild Rice Soup:

Chicken (can use rotisserie chicken, I've used both canned and baked chicken)
2 Chicken bouillon cubes
Uncle Ben's Wild Rice + Seasoning packet
1 TBSP of Dried Onions
1 can Cream of Chicken soup
1 8 oz. package of Cream Cheese (best if softened)
Any cooked veggies you would like to add (I've tried carrots, mushrooms, zucchini + all have been delicious)

Add 6 cups of water, the 2 chicken bouillon cubes and the box of rice + seasoning package together in a large pot and heat until boiling. Once boiling, turn to low and simmer for 15 minutes. Also, if you want to add carrots without pre-cooking them then you can add them now. Best if chopped!

Stir in the dried onions and simmer for 5 more minutes. Then add the cooked veggies.

Now mix in the can of cream of chicken soup and the cream cheese. Stir until well mixed and heated through. It is best if the cream cheese is softened so it is easier to mix into the soup.