Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Colorado Class

Classy: /ˈklasē/ adjective 1. Stylish and sophisticated synonyms: stylish, high-class, superior, exclusive, chic, elegant, smart, sophisticated, upscale, upmarket, high-toned. 

The Menloves have mistakenly given me the label of "classy."  One of the higher compliments I have receieved because honestly... I am not the classiest individual out there... (see example below) 

Yes...  I bought that.  And yes I am the extremely PROUD owner of that.  And yes we will probably wear them to the next University of Utah game... the humans sitting behind us will undoubtedly hate us but I need to get some use out of that well spent eighteen dollars.

     I have these moments in life where I truly do want to be classy.  Or what I consider classy in my head.  The perfectly-messy-hair-jcrew-outfit-clever-comments-little-black-dress kind of classy.  The kind of classy you see in magazines.

However, I also have these moments in life where I realize I should have been born a redneck.  The wanna-drive-a-pick-up-truck-wear-my-awful-oversized-flannel-and-eat-chile-lime-spitz moments.  It probably doesn't help that I am dating an even bigger wanna-be-redneck.

So am I classy?  Or am I redneck?  I can't quite decide.

This fall break I got to spend a few days in Colorado with the Menloves.  And as I like to say it was a real hoot.  (saying the word hoot probably makes me automatically unclassy) But honestly it was a fabulous weekend.  A weekend filled with hikes, gorgeous drives, ghost-town explorations, fabulous food, clothing-optional hot-springs, (no we didn't participate in the nudeness and sadly no I don't have pictures from that little experience but let me tell you it was a tad scarring...some people shouldn't be allowed to be nude... ever) and let's not forget those bison hats.  Pure class if you ask me...  

And that's when it hit me.  I had never thought of "class" as an subjective term.  But the more I thought about it the more subjective it became.  Class is superior, exclusive, and upscale.  And if I consider those fabulous bison hats to be superior, exclusive, and upscale then they are classy to me.

So maybe in a weird round about way being a little bit redneck is classy.  And maybe in a weird round about way I am trying to say... who cares if you are classy compared to the world's standards because you are you and that's classy in and of itself.

And now just a few of my favorite pictures from the classiest of trips with the classiest of families.

How cute is this little thing?  Absolutely fell in love with her and the rest of the Longson family.  We fed her far too much ice cream but how can you resist a face like that?


Monday, October 14, 2013

Quite Like You

I am a people person.  I love people and I love being surrounded by people.  However, I am also a firm  believer in alone time.  In fact I used to thrive on alone time.  I used to demand alone time.  Key word being "used."  

Last year I nannied one of my favorite families for a week while their parents were out of town.  It is one of my very favorite jobs not only because I adore ADORE their family but also because once the kids are at school I get the whole house completely to myself.  Perfect for my coveted alone time.  My time to write.  Think.  Meditate.  Sing at the top of my lungs or dance around the kitchen island.  Just my time.  

This September I once again began a week of my favorite job, however, my first morning I was met with a completely unexpected surprise.  As I sat eating my breakfast in complete silence and solitude I realized I was somehow totally miserable.  An honest outrage because generally an uninterrupted breakfast by myself is one of my very favorite things.  For a few minutes I couldn't put my finger on it.  Why in the world I was so miserable.  And then it hit me...  I was lonely.  A somewhat foreign feeling for the firm-believer-thriver-and-demander-of-at-least-one-hour-of-alone-time-everyday.  But I was lonely and antsy and I could blame it on no one other than Andrew.  

Quite honestly he has turned me into a total fruit.  He's turned me into that sappy girl I used to hate.  The girl I said I would never be.

I used to loathe PDA (public display of affection).  Even holding hands made me feel extremely uncomfortable.  I would carry five different things in both hands just to avoid it.  Now... I seem to be holding Andrew's hand just about everywhere we go.

The worst part is I miss him whenever I am not with him.  In fact, I can't stand being alone these days.  I have to be with him.  From the very second I say goodnight I start missing him.  And when I wake up I am grumpier than ever because once again...
I am  m i s s i n g him
I am missing him all dang day long.  At class.  At work.  While I run errands.  Missing, missing, missing him.  As I said... I have become a TOTAL fruit.

This weekend Andrew went camping and to my horror I realized I was babysitting and wouldn't be able to attend.  Meaning... a WHOLE night without him.  Which is kinda a big deal because I haven't gone a night without him since we started dating.  (Besides two weeks of vacations this summer.)  To say the least I was really really dreading Friday night... Okay I am being a tad dramatic, it honestly wasn't that bad.  I had a grand time with my Cal girl.  But once again, all things aside, I ended the night... missing him.  But this time twice as much as normal because I went a WHOLE ENTIRE day without him.  

This weekend inspired a poem.  The first poem of a new series of shorter poems.  A series I like to call "Between the Rhymes."  A new series from a new Beth.  A hold-his-hand-everywhere-we-go-alone-time-hater-always-want-to-be-with-him-completely-in-love Beth.

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Thursday, October 10, 2013

Organic Braid

Introducing my very favorite braid... the ORGANIC BRAID.  Not only is it simple to do but it requires no hair elastic, which seems to be the one thing I am always lacking when I really really need my hair up and out of my face. 

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This past summer I went to Disneyland with five of my very best friends.  Luckily one of my friends, Calee, is a Disneyland expert.  And when I say expert, I mean expert.  She knows which rides to get the fast passes for.  Which rides to wait out the line in.  And before we got into the park she pretty much had our entire day mapped out including the best places to grab snacks along the way.  To say the least she was a very valuable asset.  But her obsession with Disneyland was not the only thing that benefited us, her passion for hair also came quite in handy.  

Cal is currently a student at Taylor Andrew's Academy of Hair Design and she is becoming one of the most fabulous hairdressers that Utah has to offer.  Seriously this girl has talent.  Not only have I been the recipient of several fabulous hair-coloring experiments and hair-cuts but I also get my hair styled on a fairly regular basis.  Just one of the perks of being BFF with an aspiring hair dresser.

These skills were especially perfect for the long lines of Disneyland.  Every line was a new hair-do as we very impatiently waited for some of the most popular rides.  And as you can guess my favorite that she taught me was the oh-so-lovely organic braid.  

So without further ado here are a few simple steps. 


This braid works best on messy hair.  Talk about a BONUS.  

1.  Spilt your hair into three sections and begin braiding like you would on a normal braid.  However don't separate the ends.  Let them get kinda tangled.  This takes practice so you may have to try it a couple times.   

2. After you have braided the desired amount flip your hair through the natural loop that appears.  This loop is created because of the knotted ends.  

3. After you loop it through, pull it tight.  And BOOM you have our organic braid.  Perfect for messy hair days or on-the-go-last-minute-hair-dos.  Aka everyday.   

For different braid lengths play with how tangled you let the bottoms get at the beginning.  For a shorter braid let it get tangled faster.  For a longer braid pull the pieces apart the first few times.

For more hair ideas and work done by the lovely Cal visit her blog:

Monday, October 7, 2013


Last Thursday was the famous blackout game.  A university-of-utah-football-fan-favorite where the whole stadium wears black.  This is one game I try to never miss.  However, this year I decided it was best we miss it due to illness and the continually decreasing weather temperatures throughout the day.  With Andrew barely getting over his ridiculously awful cold, I suggested we go up to his grandma's timeshare in Park City.  I figured we could finish fighting off his cold in the hot tub, steam room, and sauna while watching the game from the comfort of a four-star hotel room.  To Carter's dismay Jane was also sick.  I however found this a lovely stroke of luck because that meant that one of our favorite couples could join us.  

The Marriott is one of my very favorite hotels in Park City.  Mainly because of the hot tubs.  There are at least five different hot tubs that each waterfall into one another.  So we spent all night being mischievous and not minding the "PLEASE DON'T CLIMB ON THE ROCKS" signs and "cliff jumping" from hot tub to hot tub.

We watched the game and we were all quite disappointed we lost.  But at least our team looked fabulous in all black.  I couldn't seem to get over our matte black helmets.  Classy if you ask me.  

After the game we decided we needed to head home.  When we left the hotel I was completely shocked to find that it was snowing.  Snowing during the first week of October.  Upset was an understatement seeing as fall is my very favorite season.  Andrew was ecstatic because he lives for skiing.  And the earlier it snows the happier he is.

The snow was all great and dandy until we started actually driving home.  It was one of those snowstorms where the headlights and the falling snow combine to make the view out of the windshield look psychedelic.  Or as Jane described it... like the stars in Star Wars when they are traveling through space at light speed.  It was kind of sickening if you concentrated too hard on it and ultimately blinding.  It was nearly impossible to see anything, including the lines on the road.

The longer we drove the more psychedelic the snow became.  And soon we couldn't decide if we preferred the whiteout that occurred with the headlights on or the less dizzying blackout that occurred with the headlights off.  The darkness was our best bet until we got really deep into Parley's.    Then lights became necessary as canyon walls and drop off's became a concern.  It not only got darker the deeper we got but it got colder... meaning more snow and higher winds.  

As the snow became even more wild I became more worried until I saw it...  a construction cone.  One of the those big, fat, orange, barrel cones.  I was filled with immediate relief.  Because those cones became a bright and easily seen guide down the rest of the canyon.  One every few feet made navigating the canyon a million times easier and I silently thanked Heavenly Father for those hideous construction cones.

As my mind became less consumed with worry it wandered to my gratitude for those construction cones.  I realized that it was the first time in my life I had ever been grateful for road construction.  Most of the time hitting construction results in me cursing under my breath.  I HATE CONSTRUCTION.  Slows my whole life down.  And it seems like there is continuously construction somewhere on a road I need to be taking.  But for once I was really grateful for the construction.  And I began to relate that to my own life...

How often am I grateful for the construction and reconstruction in my life?  For those moments when I feel like I am being torn apart and being built all over again.  Not very often.  Generally not until the newly-built-stronger-me has to deal with my next life blackout... or in other words the next life trial that leaves me feeling totally alone or helpless.  Most of the time I can't appreciate the construction until much later.  And most of time I waste time and energy complaining and whining about it instead of just putting on a smile and realizing it is for my own good...  And that is when I made my newest resolution...  to no longer curse the construction and those lovely construction workers.  Both the literal construction and the figurative construction in my life. Because the construction only makes the blackouts that much easier.  


Sunday, October 6, 2013

Homemade Orange Rolls

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A couple weeks ago one of my mom's good friends, Kathrine Perry, taught us how to make orange rolls.  If you know Kathrine Perry then you already know that these rolls are to die for.  If you don't know Kathrine it will suffice to say that the first time I made them I ate three... within the first half hour that they were out of the oven... SOS

This weekend is one of my very favorite weekends of the year.  General Conference weekend.  And the fall session is my very favorite one.  Solely because fall is my favorite season and Conference gives me even more of an excuse to cuddle up in a blanket.  Conference weekend always means good food and so this morning we of course made one of our new favorites... orange rolls.  

This recipe makes two dozen... There are now only two left.  So clearly they are a HUGE hit.  And they are surprisingly not as hard to make as I thought.  Below is the recipe and some tips from Kathrine that made them all the better.  

1 cup boiling water
1/2 cup margarine (Kathrine recommends Western Family)
1/2 cup sugar
2 t. salt
3 eggs, well beaten
1/2 cup warm water
2 packages of yeast
4 1/2 - 5 cups of flour 

Dissolve yeast in warm water.  Dissolve sugar, salt and margarine with hot water.  Stir in 2 cups of flour.  Beat eggs well and add to mixture.  Add yeast and stir in remaining flour to make a soft dough.  Refrigerate two hours OR let raise one hour, stir down and refrigerate overnight.  Three hours before serving divide dough into three parts.  Roll on floured board.  Roll dough into a large rectangle.  Spread with 1/3 of the orange filling.  Cut into eight slices. Roll like a jelly roll.  Place in greased muffin tin and let raise a couple hours.  Bake at 350 for ten minutes.  Turn pan and bake until they are light brown on top.  (About eight more minutes)  Immediately frost with glaze.  Remove from pan and let cool on rack.

1 cup sugar
scant cube margarine
grated rind of 1 large orange

1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
3 tablespoons juice from orange
1 tablespoon butter 
Tips from Kathrine: 

1.  The biggest issue with homemade rolls is too much FLOUR.  Too much flour on the kneading surface.  All that extra flour on your hands.  Just too much flour.  So be careful with the flour.  Lots of flour means dry flaky rolls.  No thank you.  

2.  Yeast keeps best in the freezer.  Storing it in the freezer ensures that you will never have a dough that doesn't rise.

3.  When it says grease your pan.  GREASE your pan.  They tend to get really stuck in there especially if the filling oozes through.

4.  When your rolls are rising instead of placing a towel over them place a piece of greased plastic wrap.

5.  Before frosting them you may want to push down some of the rolls with a fork.  Sometimes they get a little big and outta shape in the oven. 

6.  After frosting your rolls pop them out of the tin ASAP.  If you let them sit the frosting gets hard and they get hard to pry out.