Tuesday, November 25, 2014

holiday traditions

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

The holiday season is upon us! I love this time of year because it brings all my favorite traditions and has some of my very favorite memories. Ask husband, I'm big on traditions! There are so many we love participating in with our families, but since this will be our second holiday season as a married couple, and the first in our own home I figured it was a good time to start some new traditions of our own! And of course get excited about everything we love doing with our families. 
There are many, but here are some of the highlights of the season.


What we already love:
- Conner's family always eats Thanksgiving dinner on Friday, so we spend Thursday hanging out, making pies, and going to a movie. Definitely looking forward to that this year. Also, homemade pies are obviously the best, but my favorite store bought is definitely this one! Buy one, you won't be sorry!

- This isn't necessary a holiday season tradition but I associate it with the holidays... whenever we go home to California to be with Conner's family we go to Fentons Creamery to get ice cream. If you've ever seen the movie Up, it's the ice cream shop they go to and it's the best! It's something all the Whipple cousins look forward to anytime we are together in northern California.

- When we lived in Wisconsin, we picked up the tradition of making caramel-dipped cranberries. They might sound a little weird but they are seriously addicting! Do yourself a favor and make them this year. They basically taste like mini caramel apples. SO good!
       Step 1: buy a bag of fresh cranberries
       Step 2: stick toothpicks in them
       Step 3: dip them in caramel (preferably this kind) the way you would apples.

What we want to start:
- A thankful jar - we're a little late to the game on this one since I only found this on Pinterest a few days ago - but how cute is this!? I love the idea of putting out a thankful jar on the first November and filling the jar all month long. Then on Thanksgiving, we can read all the things we have to be grateful for, because there really are so many!


What we already love: 
- My grandpa was born in the Netherlands so every year we celebrate Dutch Christmas. On December 5th we put out our klompen filled with carrots for Sinterklaas to feed to his white horse, and in exchange he leaves stroopwafelschocolate lettersalmond cakes, and other goodies.

- Each year my family packs a "goodie bag" of oranges, hand sanitizer, tissues, etc. that we take to a rest home to give out as we carol and wish people a happy holiday season.
- The movies, so many movies. Both our families love watching all the classic Christmas movies - Elf, White Christmas, The Grinch, A Christmas Story, all those. And the hot chocolate, so much hot chocolate. We love a local Utah brand, Stephens the best. {Conner's favorite. My favorite.}
- Going on a special date to celebrate getting engaged. Conner proposed 10 days before Christmas, so celebrating our relationship has become a big part of the holiday season for us the past couple of years.

What we want to start:
- Decorating a Christmas Tree together! In our apartment we didn't have much room so I borrowed some mini faux trees from my mom that already had light on them. They were really cute but I'm looking forward to getting a big tree to decorate this year! Here's what our decorated apartment looked like last Christmas.

{also, I just love the sparse little tree my mom put in the family room last year}

- Last year when we were both in school and making Christmas cards didn't seem like the best way to spend our limited Christmas budget. But it made me really sad we didn't get to send them out. This year we made Christmas cards and used Tiny Prints. I can't even tell you how hard it was to narrow down on one design. They have so many, and they are all cute. Really you have to check them out. It probably took me a week just to pick which one to use. I'm really happy with how they turned out. I definitely recommend using them. I'll be sure to post a picture of ours close to Christmas!

Thursday, November 06, 2014

that one time we graduated college

Thursday, November 06, 2014

It's been a while. Things were busy. You know what with graduating, moving, vacations, working full-time, starting grad school... but we'll get to all that. One step at a time. That's the mantra right now, just taking things one day at a time - cause man - life gets crazy & stressful & busy.
But in a good way. Life really is so good. We are so blessed.

So anyway, here are some pictures from that time last April when we became college graduates! And when we took a trip with some great friends to Las Vegas to celebrate graduating from BYU and starting real life - adult life :)

For some reason husband doesn't like this picture. I wanted to use it on our Christmas card { cookin' up a post on that later } this year since it's kind of our highlight of the year and all... but it got seriously vetoed. Something about graduating being "not a big deal". Lame!

For some reason, I can't find any pictures of us with Conner's parents who also came all the way from California to support us. And brought me gorgeous flowers! Thanks guys :)

This girl. She's graduated high school and started college life and is just the coolest. Love her.

 This little lady is getting ready to graduate Elementary and move on to Junior High! Also love her.

So after graduation, we hopped in the car and drove down to party it up in Vegas. There was a whole lot of this going on, and a whole lot of eating delicious food going on. I spent a lot of my final hours in BYU classes searching Yelp for the best places to eat on our trip. Shh, don't tell. Also don't surf the internet during class, that's bad! If it makes you feel better it was just a general..
{ I linked a couple of our very favorite, must-go places below }

Sushi Mon (the one on Maryland Parkway)

Cirque du Soleil! One of our absolute favorite memories of this trip, amazing!

Babystacks. Oh my word, this breakfast (which is basically dessert) was the bomb!

New kicks, cause shopping in Vegas is the best. Obviously.

Of course we did the obligatory hotel/casino walk-throughs.

Had some fun at the wax museum...

And went into a sugar coma at Serendipity.

Vegas, you did not disappoint! Thanks Michael & Deanna for such a fun trip and great memories! We are just a little heartbroken you live so far away. But we won't pass up an opportunity to come visit you in the Big Apple when we get a chance!

After Vegas we moved from our apartment in Provo - our first ever home together - up to our cute little house in Holladay. We sure love it! :) And I'm determined to start documenting it more!