Friday, January 31, 2014

Our Priority.

So it has come to my attention that my blog posts make it seem like we are only moving towards "materialistic" goals (new house, buying a boat, building a boat, etc.) and not about long-term "family" goals. And I realize now looking back on my posts how it could seem that way if that's all you knew and didn't talk to me on a daily basis. 

But, I take full responsibility considering the sequence of my last few posts. First I wrote about "my plan" and how badly I want children to a post about how we are buying a new house so we can build a shop so we can build a new boat. Some people's reaction was, "OH MY GOSH! They're putting off having kids so they can buy new things! A new house?! Didn't they just buy a house?! They are building another boat?! Didn't they just buy a boat?! They are crazy!" 

Okay, okay I'm exaggerating, but I had more than 1 person react similarly to that ;)

First things first, I want the whole world to know that starting a family together is something that is a top priority for both of us. It is something so sacred, special, and important and is not something we take lightly. At all. 

So now that you know where our hearts are, maybe you will believe me when I say that our decisions are not materialistic. Everything we are doing right NOW is to prepare for our future kids. 

We have BIG dreams for our family. We want to be a family that plays together and travels together (oh, are you catching on to why we are so excited about our boat?) Yep, I've said it before and I am saying it again. WE (not Landon) bought OUR boat (not Landon's boat!) because WE want to teach our kids from a young age not only how to sail, but how important it is to spend QUALITY time together as a family. I don't know why people get the impression that it was only Landon who wanted the boat and we got it for him. Are you cray cray?! You think we would buy something that expensive without both of us being 100% into it? You don't think we prayed about this decision and if it was a good choice for our family? Sorry if I'm sounding upset, but it does hurt my feelings when I hear that multiple people felt this way. 

So many American families think quality time together is going to the movies. Or watching their nightly shows together. How much talking do you do at the movies? Is your relationship improving because you sit on the couch together every night? (By the way, we watch TV too...but a very limited amount.) Hardly anyone I know travels together. Or has a hobby or projects together. I can't even begin to tell you how dear sailing is to my heart because it is something that Landon and I learned TOGETHER and fell in love with TOGETHER. We have grown so much in our relationship through sailing and we can't wait to share that with our kids!! It is not just about a "boat" or "sailing." It is about the quality time we share together. It could be anything really.

Over the summer we mapped out our lives and made a 30 year plan. I know that sounds silly, but we decided what we wanted out of life and what we needed to do to make that happen. So we bought a boat, I started Scentsy (because it will be a good mom job), we are looking for a new house so we can build a shop to build our boat...but you betcha having kids is part of everything we are doing right now too. They are our plan and we can't wait to introduce them into this life we have been building for them.

Most LDS people are married for a year or two and then they start trying to have kids. When people see us, married for over four years and no kid in sight, alarm bells start ringing. But really, it is the most important decision you could ever make and we are doing what is best for US. We aren't waiting to have kids because we are selfish or materialistic. Quite opposite actually. Plus, it is a decision that is deeply private and between Landon, me, and our Heavenly Father. 

Summary: we are planning in having kids (when?! Wouldn't you like to know!) and we are putting ALL our energy into preparing for that day when we are no longer just husband and wife, but dad and mom to our precious children. This includes buying our family boat (aka Viking), buying a house to build our retirement boat (we want to retire EARLY and literally sail around the world), saving up our money and planning our budget for when we only have one income, etc. etc. etc.

Sailing=quality time as a family. Family is the MOST important thing to us and our top priority.

Okay end rant ;) 

P.S. I am working overnight at my job for 4 nights, so if I sound "fussy" maybe it's because I am! :)

Monday, January 27, 2014

Adjust the Sails.

Yesterday in church someone shared this quote, and I'm sure I've heard it before but I have decided it is my new life motto.

Read the whole talk here

Life can be so hard. It was never meant to be easy. We signed up for this. We wanted to come here, knowing that there was going to be sickness, heartache, death, disappointment, temptations, failure, etc. etc. etc! Why would anyone choose to have those things happen to them?! Because without these horrible, awful, no good things that happen to us we wouldn't appreciate the good things. If every single day was a good day, we wouldn't really have good days anymore. We wouldn't even know what "good" is. We have to go through sorrow to experience and know joy. And joy is worth it don't you think? 

But we don't just experience trials so we can know joy, we go through these hard things so we can change and grow and become better. Bad things are going to happen to us. It's a fact of life. We have been told since we were kids that "life isn't fair." But it is our REACTION to these trials, not the trials themselves, that determine our happiness. 

I have seen people who go through things that are unimaginable to me. I look at them and think, "how do you even get out of bed in the morning?" I have one particular friend who lost her mom to cancer. Her mom happened to be my young women's leader at church. She used to pick me up from high school every day, just me, because I didn't have a way to get home. She was truly the most kind-hearted, loving, and Christ-like person I have ever known. She had a light and a goodness that I have never seen in anyone but her. When she passed away, I felt so angry. Why her? She had 4 young daughters and was such an amazing wife and mother. It simply wasn't fair. I had a really hard time with it. But then I would see my friend, even a few days after she lost her mom, smiling and laughing and accepting the Lord's will. She couldn't change the fact that she lost her mom too young, but she could adjust her sails. She chose to be happy, despite her trial. She chose to rely on Heavenly Father for strength. Her reaction to adversity has impacted me more than she could ever know.

Sometimes I find myself complaining and struggling to be happy when I'm going through something hard. I let my trials drag me down and cause me so much unhappiness. But I really want to be like my friend. I want to look adversity in the face and say, "you don't have power over me!" I want to be happy and grateful, even when life isn't going according to plan and bad things happen. I want to focus on the good and come out stronger because of my trials.

I know I say I blog for my future kids, but I also blog for future Hannah. Future Hannah, I know you have been through some really hard and unfair things. But keep your chin up, pray for Heavenly Father's help, focus on the good and come out stronger. Learn from these hard things you've been handed. Adjust your sails.

Saturday, January 25, 2014

Viking is Home and a Video Tour.

Almost 2 months to the day of buying our sailboat, she is finally HOME. I can't believe everything we went through to get to this point...

view from the top of the mast. 
In mid-December she was taken apart (mast taken down along with sails, rigging, etc.) and transported on a truck from Seattle to a boatyard in Portland.

on the huge semi

pretty excited to have the boat in Portland! See how big sailboats are out of the water?
on the contraption ready to be dropped in the water. 
It was really cool to watch them slowly lower our 20,000 pound boat.
From mid-December until yesterday Landon did SO much work to put back together. The guys at the boatyard were really awesome and did a lot of work too (getting it rigged for a spinnaker, putting the mast up, etc.)

doing electrical work to add some new instruments
He wired a new network and did all sorts of crazy things with this panel/wiring. Smarty smart boy.
stepping the mast (putting the mast back up :)
she looks soooo pretty with her mast on! :)
We literally spent every weekend and maybe 2-3 weeknights at the boat. What did I do this whole time? Well I wrapped myself up in blankets like a burrito and read The Hobbit. I got pretty sick of spending hours and hours in the freezing cold boat...

pretty miserable! bored and freezing...
We did have some fun while Viking was at the boatyard though. We took her out sailing a few times and one day we put together our "port-a-boat" and Landon rowed me around the harbor singing "You Are So Beautiful." It was awfully romantical ;)

It was SO foggy, which is pretty normal for Oregon. I love it!

our first "meal" on the boat...grilled cheese. So fun to have a boat we can cook on! :)
Anyway, were pretty dang excited when we found out on Friday that the boatyard was done with the work they were doing and we could take her home to Rocky Pointe Marina.

It was a beautiful day--sunny and 55 degrees. It felt like spring! Unfortunately, there was basically no wind. We sailed a bit but for the most part we had to motor.

We love being outside enjoying beautiful Oregon!

I wish the sail could have been up a little more... :(

how cool would it be to live on one of these floating homes?
It took us 4 hours to go from the boatyard to our dock and we loved every minute of it, even if we had to motor most of the way :)

Here's a cheesy little video I did to give you a tour of the boat. Please don't mind the mess, the dogs whining, and my lovely commentary :)

We are so excited Viking is home and ready for some adventures! We already have a little trip planned in a few weeks :)

Thursday, January 16, 2014

House Hunt.

Well, we are on the hunt again. It seems like we just barely moved into our house but we have actually been here for over two years now. We weren't planning on leaving it so soon because we really love it and love our neighbors, so this is bittersweet...

We have actually been looking since August but it is taking us for-ev-er to find something that will work for us. We aren't just moving to move... we are moving because we need a bigger yard to build a shop so Landon can build our next boat. And let me tell you, what we are looking for is pretty much impossible to find.

Oregon has an "urban growth boundary." This basically means that the government is restricting where house developments can be built because they want to preserve the countryside. The rolling hills and trees and farmland really are beautiful... but the problem is there are thousands of people moving into the area because of Intel's growth, but there's no room to put them! So what happens is neighborhoods are being built with houses that are almost stacked on top of each other... which means, no yard. No yard means no room for an 18 x 45 shop.

Image via

The houses that do have room for a shop are the houses that were built before I was born. We don't want to live in a gross, old house and have to deal with remodeling. Plus, in an older neighborhood there won't be as many "young" families. And we want to live in a cute neighborhood filled with kids for our future kids. So you can see why we've struggled finding something...

darling houses, but you could reach out your window and touch your neighbor's hand. Image via

For awhile we were looking to buy our own plot of land and build a custom home. The more we looked into it, the more we realized it wouldn't work. In order to build a custom home on your own land, you need to get a "construction loan" and these have really high interest rates. We want to stay away from those. Although we really did fall in love with this property...

Then we started looking at houses in the boonies, outlying cities that have a little more space. There were a few potentials, but nothing that was really going to work...

Our current plan is to buy a new home, but as part of a neighborhood development so we can avoid a construction loan. We have our eye on this cutie that is in a small town called Forest Grove, 15 minutes west of where we live now. (The picture isn't the actual house, but same floor plan). 

It is a little bit of a drive and kind of "out there" but it is in a really cute neighborhood and it would be pretty nice to have a brand new home with some property! Plus, it is a smaller town with really good schools so the community is GREAT.

They aren't even going to start building this house for 3-6 months and then it will take about 4 months to build... so who knows what will happen. SO many things need to fall into place but I am hoping we find something that will work for us sooner rather than later. 

Luckily we have an AMAZING realtor who is always there for us and answers my never-ending emails, even at midnight! :) She helped us find our apartment when we first moved here, and that's when I knew she was different. She wasn't making a "sale" from us, she was just willing to help and tell me about the good areas of Beaverton because I had no clue. She then helped us find our first house and now is helping us through this seemingly impossible house hunt. She is always upfront and honest...we value and trust her opinion SO much. I am soooo grateful we found her almost three years ago. (If you live in the Portland area, check her out! Jennifer Venable with John L Scott). 

These next couple of months are going to be interesting I'm sure :) Wish us luck!!!

Friday, January 10, 2014

My Plan.

My last few blog posts have been about vacations, Christmas, and our boat. But those aren't really my favorite posts to write. In fact, I sometimes dread writing those LONG posts, sifting through thousands of pictures and trying to record every detail... It is overwhelming to me! But, I do want to have a record of those things so I just blog about them anyway.

So this is the first time in awhile that I've been able to just sit down and write whatever the heck I feel like. It is so nice. Writing is so therapeutic for me and I like to share my feelings on this little blog as well as my adventures. This blog really is for my future kids so I like to get real on here.

With that being said, here comes another honest post from my heart.

It is not a big secret how badly I want children. I'm pretty open about it and have talked and dreamed of being a mom for as long as I can remember. Every plan I made for my life was based around my kids. I went to school to be a teacher because if I HAD to work, it would be a perfect "mom job." I would have summers and holidays off and could be at the same school as the kiddos. I also planned on being married at least one year and a college graduate before trying to have a baby. That was the plan.

So in April 2011 I graduated from BYU and in my head I was now officially ready to be a mom. Well it has almost been three years since graduation and four years of marriage and obviously there is still no baby. There have been tears, there have been panic attacks, I have made myself physically sick... It has been hard. Probably the hardest thing I have ever been through. My heart was shattered. 

So for two years I struggled with this. I prayed, I cried, I read uplifting talks and scriptures, I poured my heart out to Landon and over time I realized how negative and childish I was being. I was so focused on "my plan." But life rarely goes according to "our plan." That's what makes life so great. We go through things we weren't planning on because it is those experiences that are going to stretch us, make us better, and teach us how to rely on our Heavenly Father and our Savior. I am sooo grateful that our loving Father in Heaven has a bigger and better plan for us then we could even dream of. 

I think of all the wonderful things that have happened in my life that weren't in my plan. My own plans were definitely not as good as the way my life has turned out. I never planned on dear-johning my missionary, I never planned on getting married before getting the chance to serve an LDS mission, I never planned on living outside of Utah, I never planned on getting all this time to focus on being a wife before having kids, I never planned on being involved with something as adventurous as sailing, I never planned on being a nanny for my career... See where I'm going here? Thank goodness life doesn't go according to plan!!!

I think it is just human nature to always be wishing and wanting more. It is actually pretty awful. When I was little I couldn't wait to graduate high school and live on my own. When I lived on my own I couldn't wait to get married. When I was married I couldn't wait to be a mom. What a sad way to live!!! I look back on each of those phases in my life with such fondness. They were SUCH good times, but I don't think I realized it in the moment. To quote Andy from The Office, "I wish there was a way to know you're in the good old days before you've actually left them." 

Right now is the "good old days" I will talk about 10...25...60 years from now. It is SO important to live in the present and learn to focus on the good things in your life right now in this moment. 

I am happy to report that I am doing SO much better now. Believe me, I still have my days... But overall I am just happy. I have learned so much through this trial and have come out stronger and better equipped to one day be a mom. Oh man, when those kids do come into my life they are going to be SO loved. I have been waiting so long to hold them. 

My new plan? Be happy right now in this phase of being a wife to Landon and enjoying this time just us. I know I will look back on these years as priceless and I know they really are the good old days. 

And what's a blog post without a picture? How cute is my little family? :)

P.S. I just realized that some people might read this post and think that we can't get pregnant. But that's not the case. Why we don't have kids yet is another post for another day.

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