Thursday, September 22, 2011

Flies, Fitness, Food & Fanny

Eeesh. I had a very bugful day yesterday:

a) The endless torment of fruit flies swarming my face at work. 
b) I accidentally ran over a preying mantis while mowing the lawn. I felt so bad! Such a big living thing! It was like 7:30p, dark and the poor thing blended with the grass...unfortunately I blended it a bit more... :S
c) In hopes of restoring my bug-kharma after the mantis incident, I helped a grasshopper find its way out of my stairwell...rather than vacuuming it up.
d) Brace yourselves...I nearly walked FACE FIRST into a spindly little spider dangling from his nasty web in my bathroom. ew. Ew. EW!

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I must take a moment to thank my lucky stars for the invention of Dermatologists. No one should have to endure the torture of acne and breakouts...especially those who wish to be pretty when they get married.

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Why is it that when I'm away from James time draaaaags on SO sloooooowly,
But when I'm with him time FLIES by?

Bah! Seriously? I find this phenomenon very inconvenient.

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Now that I no longer (for the time being) have a bathtub or a piano, I've found a new kind of therapy, that, surprisingly is more productive than either of my previous options... cleaning & baking. It's like now that I'm getting married my home-making skills are kicking into gear... and I like it! :D

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And, for a little PPP, I am bound and determined to tone my legs and I found some quick and effective exercises that I thought I'd share with all of you:

The Bird Dog, The Plank, The Bridge, The Lunge, The Plie Squat...and I truly don't know what that last two are called...but they kill me every time.

Also, in Pilates, we do a similar exercise called "Teenager Butt"
...need I say more? ;)

My long term goal?
To be this lady.

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So...I've found that my goals of learning to feed myself, trying to eat healthy and living a the 9-5 life (just got a fulltime job) cannot easily co-exist.

Anyone have suggestion for quick and/or freezer meals?
I'm the "grab something as you run out the door" type, these days.

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That's all for now.

Keep it random, y'all! ;)

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Our Photographer

As Rick Steves said,
“I shutter to think how many people are underexposed
and lacking depth in this field.”

Ok, not only is one of the most cleverly awesome quotes I've ever heard ;) but I must also agree with it 100%! These days it's ridiculously easy to claim the title of "photographer." I don't mean any disrespect by that, but truly, one would hope that a nice camera wouldn't be the only qualification for starting a business...and yet, for some, it is.

Maybe it's just me and my ultra-nitpicky-aesthetic-visionary approach to wedding planning (and design/art in general), but James and I feel so blessed to have our friend, Jalene Taylor, capturing this fabulous time in our lives! She is the embodiment of a professional and an artist and is so passionate with her craft. I've always admired Jalene's love for photography, her attention to detail, her eye for composition and, all around, her ability to freeze beautiful moments in time, to be remembered and cherished for years.

“It’s one thing to make a picture of what a person looks like,
it’s another thing to make a portrait of who they are.”
~Paul Caponigro~

Thank you, Jalene, for sharing your beautiful talents with us!

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Our Story - Part II

Y'all ready for this? :) Good, cause I'm so giddily excited to tell you all the fabulous details of how and when I realized that I wanted to spend forever with James and, of course, the way he finally proposed :)

I remember, before James was even my boyfriend...I think we had only been out 3 or 4 times aka he wasn't "sold" on me yet, I was sitting in Sunday School and he was teaching.

First of all, let me premise this by saying that, my future husband is an awesome teacher. He's had lots of cool experiences and opportunities to be a teacher throughout the past 5 years and, thus, he's pretty impressive up in front of a group (see photo below...I rest my case ;)

So, there I am, sitting inconspicuously in his Sunday School class and, frankly, daydreaming about "us"...the not-yet-existent "us", that is ;) I remember looking around the room at all of these impressive and gorgeous women in my ward and then up at James in all of his spiritual-awesomeness and silently (and selfishly) praying,

"Heavenly Father, if, out of all of the amazing women in this ward, James chose to date only me, I would feel like the luckiest girl on the planet..."

Well, maybe Heavenly Father took that little pathetic plea into consideration, but...BEHOLD, it came to pass! And, truly, I AM the luckiest girl on the planet to have James...forever! :D

Well, fast forward to July 30th, the night, after much discussion, prayer, fasting and thought, that James and I decided to GET MARRIED! Oh yes, that was a good night! :) We also happened to bake a pizza that night :) See how happy we look! Not too mention, how cute is James in that sparkly cloud apron I made in Junior High?

And thus commenced the awesome adventure of wedding planning and ring shopping...and more ring shopping...and more...and more. PHEW! But it was all worth it :) James is a "deal hunter"...the best I've ever seen, I might, I let him do his thing.

Alright, this next part is an important segue into the fabulous proposal.

K, so, I love my family! Like, so much so, that, you may have noticed, I tend to talk about them 24/7! So, suffice it to say that from very early on in our relationship, James has known the names of my whole family (like sibs-in-law, n&ns, everyone), even before meeting all of them.

Thus, James had a feeling that they must be pretty important to me. He's right, by the way ;) They are.

So, Friday night, September 9th. I was busy bustling around my apartment cleaning, packing for Michigan...frankly flustered about all the things I needed to get done. James arrives. He had planned this whole backyard movie for us and set to work setting up a screen and a projector while I finished up some things. I figured it was just something nice for us to do before I left for Michigan for a week...I wasn't completely wrong.

So, we set out some blankets, a bazillion pillows, a sheet duct-taped to the side of my neighbors garage and a table with a projector & computer. I was indifferent about the movie selection so James picked one that he had brought - Harry Potter 2...or so I thought.

As we were trying to sync the computers with the projectors, James accidentally forwarded to halfway through the movie and suddenly I saw my brother John's face appear on the screen...

"What...? What was that?"

James was silent and kept on in his technological efforts.

"Why was John on your computer? Do you have videos from John on your computer? What was that?"

After a moment, James responded,
"He and I are making a business plan together."
I took that absurd excuse as a clue to stop asking questions.

Finally, we got the projectors to work and we sat down to watch..."Harry Potter 2." I have to admit, I was just waiting for John's face to appear on the screen at any moment...but Harry Potter went on.

Suddenly the movie turned into an Emergency Broadcast System Alert screen... then it went fuzzy and made all sorts of loud staticy sounds. All the while James was saying things like, "What's going on?" "What happened to the movie?"

Then, suddenly, James appeared... like, on the screen.

I was silent.

Screen James, we'll call him, stood in his presentation stance (yes, he has a presentation stance) and said something like, "By now you may have noticed that I'm not Harry Potter...Lindsay, there are a lot of people in your life who love you, so, before I take my turn, I think your family has something to say..."

One by one, each of my 8 siblings, their fabulous spouses and their beautiful children (my n&ns) came on the screen, each sharing their own segment of "Why We Love Lindsay." Truly, folks, I cried through the whole thing. Tears of love (yes, there are such things as 'tears of love'). My heart literally swelled with each of their sweet sentiments of love and appreciation. Lastly, was my parents. Oh how I love them! I think for the first two months of their mission I cried every time I talked to them on the phone. I've really missed them. So you can imagine how sweet it was to see them on the screen expressing their love in their own sweet way.

Finally, Screen James appeared again and expressed his own love for me. He expressed how his love has grown and how I've truly become his ideal "companion." Then, Screen James turned the time over to Real James by saying, "I think the James sitting next to you has something to say..."

Real James took my hand and politely asked me to stand. I sniffled, kissed his cheek, beaming, and stood. Immediately he put his hand in his pocket, produced the ring and dropped to his knee. Suddenly, my favorite opera duet, AND the most beautiful love duet of all time, I might add - Puccini's "O Soave Fanciulla", began to play in the background.

The tears were uncontrollable by this point. I just stood their laughing and crying and smiling and sniffling. He knelt there for a moment and attempted to regain control of his own emotions...then he spoke. Unfortunately, I wish I could remember everything he said, word for word, but by this point my heart and my head were racing each other a billion miles a minute. I remember it was the sweetest and most poetic thing I've ever heard and by the time he finished he had asked me to marry him! We exchanged kisses and hugs and somewhere in there I let out an "Of course, I will!" and then he put the most gorgeous ring ever on my giddy finger.

After more hugs and kisses and laughter and awesomeness, we sat down again for a moment and watched James' bloopers from the movie, which, by the way, were adorable. A favorite of mine is the beginning one...James walks on screen nervously, stands there, looks at the camera and says, " we go..." and walks off. Haha! They reminded me of the teenage boy practicing his, "Hey, Lindsay!..."Yo, Lindsay! What's up?!... Oh, uh...hello there, Lindsay!" in the mirror before calling a girl up for a date. My heart melted at the sheer cuteness of him :)

We went inside and took this series of photos minutes after the proposal.
Red-eyes, happy faces :) Gotta love it.

Yeah, yeah! Ew, GROSS! ;) I say that for my n&ns...and some of my siblings who may gasp and/or blush at the sight of that last photo. Haha.

Truly, he put his whole heart and soul into every sweet second of the proposal and made it the most romantic and beautiful moment of my life...thus far. I wish I would've thought to applaud him afterwards. Honestly, best chick flick I've ever seen ;) And the amazing thing is, it was for ME! I've never been so humbled by love. And, oh, what a Love I have, too ;)

(James handing me a dead rose he found on the beach in L.A. Haha!)

Good heavens, James dear! I love you!


And they lived happily ever after...
To be continued...


Sunday, September 11, 2011

Our Story - Part I

Alright, all you patient people, here it is - James & my "once upon a time..."! So get comfortable and grab a box of tissues...or a box of chocolates, cause you're about to hear my favorite love story of all time! :)

It was March 27th, a Sunday, when I first saw James. He was visiting my ward with his sister Liz for Easter Sunday. Liz and I had been asked by Sister Larsen, the teacher of the Temple class, to share our testimonies, since we had both recently received our temple endowment. Thus, James was also in attendance in that class.

(Originally, my favorite picture of James to stalk on Facebook)

I remember seeing him and thinking, "That has to be Liz's brother! Wait a minute...Liz is awesome, I bet he's awesome, too... Hm, he's cute!" After Liz and I bore our testimonies and love of the temple, Sister Larsen opened it up for anyone else. James bore his own beautiful testimony of the temple and first impression of him was..."Spiritual? Check. RM? Check. Loves Gospel? Check." :) Not a bad way to start.

I found out later that I wasn't the only one running a secret "date inspection" in that Sunday school class. Liz apparently had mentioned to James that she wanted to set him up with me. In Sunday school she nudged him when I came in - "That's Lindsay." So, the next day Liz got my approval and my number to pass on to James and on Wednesday James called me. By week's end we had been on two dates and I was feeling great about "Liz's brother."

Well, let's just say that James wasn't as "gung ho" as early on in our relationship as I was. He took some convincing...some "chasing" if you will. I attribute it to the fact that, at BYU, where James goes to school, there is an abundance of beautiful, awesome and spiritually-founded young women to date (guys, too), and thus, unfortunately I feel like the general population have gotten fairly comfortable that there will always be someone "bigger and better". At least, James agrees, that this is the case with some, if not most.

So, that said, it wasn't till late May, when James got back from a tour in Russia with a BYU folk dance group, that James and I went out again. Though, I should mention that he called me the day after he got home and we went out that night ;)

(James and some of his friends from "Living Legends" - the folk dance group at BYU)

After some more casual dating on his end and some more casual chasing on my end, James invited me for a weekend at his friends' cabin with a bunch of his buddies. By this time it was June and I, frankly, was sick of this "casual" thing. I knew that I liked him, we had spent nearly 4 days a week every week with each other, and I was either wanting to move forward or to stop wasting each others time. I was never very bold in dating before, but I knew that with James I could and should be as open and honest as I he would be with me, so I basically said, "I can find happiness with or without you, but I need you to make a decision." I know. I surprised myself, too...but it worked ;)

The next night at ward FHE (Yes, I was lucky enough to have James in my ward for the whole Summer! Tender mercy!) I determined to just be me, not focus too much on James, and just enjoy everything and everyone. When the night was over, I left James with nothing but a brief and polite wave and a "see you later." He caught up to me in the parking lot and we talked...for two hours. He said he still wanted to date me, thought I was awesome, etc. which satisfied me enough that I decided to accompany him to his friends' cabin for the weekend.

(James and some of his friends at the cabin)

After that beautiful weekend of relaxation, games, laughter and fun with all of James' awesome friends and plenty of flirtation between James and me...he held my hand and asked me to be his girlfriend. And, you can guess that without any hesitation at all, I said yes.

Since that point James and I have been pretty into each other :) It was such a blessing to have the Summer together. Seeing each other nearly every day, our relationship was able to move along fairly quickly. A month later, we found ourselves sitting on his parents' front lawn in Nevada, looking at the stars on the Fourth of July and exchanging a first kiss and our first "I love you"s. Giddiness and butterflies and happiness, I tell you what :) Haha, ok, I promised myself I would limit the "mushy" stuff.

(James and I in his parents' front yard...and the spot where we smooched ;)

I can't even express how grateful I am and how blessed I feel that Heavenly Father would orchestrate such a beautiful relationship in my life and introduce me to such a remarkable young man. James and I find ourselves saying often, "Heavenly Father must really love me."

Not only have we found every crucial thing we've ever needed in a future spouse, but Heavenly Father has lovingly allowed us to have some of the "Would Like to Have's", too. For instance, James can cook, he can dance, he's  thoughtful and romantic, he supports my love for Harry Potter and allowed me to convert him and bring him to the pre-screening of the last movie, his smile makes me melt and he served an LDS mission in ITALY!! - thus he speaks Italian, shares my love for everything Italian and, best of all, he wants to take me there :) For James, well, he happens to love the fact that I can sing. In fact, I invited him to my vocal recital (where I sang in Italian, too) and he said that when he heard me sing he melted and realized a whole new depth to me that he really enjoys. So, guys and gals, it never hurts to magnify your talents ;)

(Harry Potter 7.2 prescreening with our friend Carrie)

Next up: The Proposal :) Stay tuned.

Saturday, September 10, 2011


Last night, Mr. James Stubbs got down on a knee (detailed, adorably, romantically, awesome story coming tomorrow, k?) and asked me to be his wife for...forever :) It was seriously the most beautiful thing ever! Can't wait to tell y'all the genius plan of my genius FIANCE ;)

Oh, and the ring?
Tis the most gorgeous thing I've ever had on my finger!

What a great man :)

I mean, we all knew he had good taste. Right?
Ha, he's marrying me afterall ;)

(Yeah, yeah...just ignore my burnt fingers. Fight with the curling iron. Curling iron won.)

Tee hee!

Now I'm giddily spending the week in Lansing, MI with my awesome parentals.
That fabulous reunion story will come soon, too, with lots of fabulous pictures!

Michigan is gorgeous...and Jamesless :(
but it is SO good to see my Mom & Dad again, I tell you what!

Ok, I'll be back soon...


Thursday, September 8, 2011


So...remember that cute and fabulous boy named James that I love?

Well...I may or may not have some news for y'all.

Yes, sir.


In-depth story to come soon :D

P.S. Isn't Jalene Taylor an amazing photographer? :D I can't wait to see the rest of our pictures!