Monday, December 5, 2011

Time to Go

Well, friends, the time has come. I'm taking this blog private. Here's the thing though: I still want you to read it. I just don't want stalkers reading it. So, if I know you at all, if your name is just slightly familiar to me, or even if I don't know you but you're not a creepy man or woman, I would love to include you in the exclusive club of those who will still get Bennett and Stacie updates. So here's the deal, if you want to have the option to still be able to read this occassionally, do the following:

1. Leave a comment with your name and email address


2. Send your email address to: if you don't want others to see it.

Sometimes when people make their blogs private I don't send them my email address because I'm afraid they'll think I'm weird for reading their blog if I don't know them very well or at all. I promise I won't think you're weird or creepy, rather I'll be flattered that you read it. So don't be bashful, send me your email. I'm going to start making it private after Christmas, at the first of the year so you have a few weeks to send your email in!

Monday, November 28, 2011

WARNING: It's a Little Wordy

Last week I finished my month long practicum in an elementary school in West Jordan. A practicum is essentially a mini-student teaching in which I observed my mentor teacher, helped out in the classroom and got lots of practice by teaching a few lessons a every day for a month. I was assigned to do my practicum in a sixth grade class. I was originally a little freaked out, mostly because I knew that the majority of the class would probably be able to to beat me up. And I was right, 90% of the class reached heights greater than my mere five feet and two inches and weighed several to many pounds more than me and could have taken me down in any sort of physical competition or fight. Luckily, I showed them who was boss and gained the respect I was hoping for and never came close to getting pummeled. My other concern with 6th grade, aside from the students towering over me, was that they would be entering their teenage, and therefore bratty, years. I couldn't have been more wrong. Although some of them were punks at times and a few were already affiliated with gangs, the majority of them still had a cute little kid in them but were old enough that they were beginning to develop a fun personality and sense of humor. My fears of teaching in the 6th grade were completely unjustified and wiped away after only a day or two in the classroom. I fell in love with the kids in my class and I couldn't have asked for a more perfect mentor teacher to work with. I've tried to think of the best parts of my practicum experience and I've come up with a little list:

NOTE: All names have been changed so as to honor confidentiality rights. 

  •  There was a little boy that would walk up to me every morning during silent reading and tell me how lovely I looked or that I had beautiful eyes. Seriously, if any one is lacking in the self-confidence department, become an elementary school teacher. The kids will make your self-esteem sky rocket.
  • There were two boys that would stay in from recess to talk to me almost every day. When I would tell them to go out and play, they said that talking with me was more fun than recess. Once again, refer to the self-esteem point on number one. 
  • One afternoon the kids were working in pairs and two boys were sitting on the ground filling out their social studies packet. One of the boys started wacking the other one with his pencil. Well, boy #2 had enough and grabbed the pencil away from boy #1. Due to overly exerted force, boy #2 stabbed himself in the palm with the freshly sharpened pencil. My mentor teacher had stepped out of the room for a few minutes at the time, meaning I was the 'responsible adult'. I asked him if he was okay and he told me in a brave, but terrified voice that he thought he might have lead poisoning. I looked down at his hand and in just a few seconds, a pool of blood had collected in his palm, so I quickly sent him down to the office to get it taken care of. Minutes later he came running back into the portable; he had managed to convince the office that he may have lead poisoning and that they needed to check out the pencil that had become the weapon. Turns out he was fine, as I had predicted, and later when I asked him if he was okay he informed me that he was, only because he was used to his hand getting stabbed. Just last year he accidentally stabbed himself with a knife. You'd think he'd have learned.
  •  I learned that "Rasmussen" is a little tricky for even 6th graders to pronounce. I've resorted to the fact that for the rest of my life the majority of students will refer to me as "Mrs. R." Except for that one over achiever in my class who promised me on my first day there that he would practice my name that night if I would practice his. When I asked him what his last name was he told me "Carter." You've got yourself a deal, Mr. Carter. And I've got myself the better end of the deal. 
  • As cliche as this sounds, the best part of the whole practicum was teaching the kids and having a visible lightbulb go on. Sometimes it was with a whole class and other times it was at the back table working in a small group with the kids who were struggling. Either way, knowing that I had taught them something that they needed to know and that I had made a difference, no matter how small, was the most rewarding feeling in the world. It's what will make the crappy pay worth it.
  • That and receiving notes and pictures from the kids on a daily basis. One of my favorites came from a kid named Sam. To give a little background you have to know that I taught a lesson introducing the planets in the Solar System. At one point in the lesson, I broke the class into eight groups, each representing a planet (very confusing that Pluto is no longer a planet). I had taken the distances from each planet to the Sun and converted them into measurable distances. We went outside and I gave each group a tape measurer and marked a place on the field that represented the Sun. Each group was then to measure the distance from the Sun to their planet so that they could visually see and understand the concept of relative distance. Before we went outside I told the kids that if they were goofing off and not following directions, I would make them stay in from recess. Well, Sam decided to steal Isaac's tape measurer and whip him with it. Obviously, Sam got to stay in from recess. While he was sitting at his desk thinking about what he had done, he wrote me a little letter that I promise I will keep forever: 
Sorry Mrs. R. that I was being disrispectful And sorry for stealing Isaac's measuring tape and for running around I'm sorry I would never do that again. And thank you so much for being so nice to the class. 

Melted my heart. Especially the way he spelled disrespectful and sincerely. We still need to work on that. Well, if you've made it this far, my deepest apologies for being so wordy and writing so much. What can I say?

Since then we had a perfect Thanksgiving break and loved being able to spend so much time with both of our families. It gave us a little taste of what Christmas break will feel like, only we won't have any homework over the upcoming three weeks: glorious! We're so excited for the Christmas season and have put all of of Christmas decorations up in our apartment and have been listening to Christmas music nonstop now that Thanksgiving is over. Now if we can just get through the last two weeks of classes and finals. Wish us luck! 

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Weekend Getaway

Last weekend Bennett's cousin got married in Twin Falls. We had been planning on heading up for it Friday morning and going back home that same night. My mom happened to mention that to my aunt and she graciously offered us a weekend stay at their condo in Sun Valley just a little over an hour away. We decided to make a weekend trip of it at about 10:30 the night before we left. It was such a fun spur of the moment trip that we desperately needed.

Our first stop was in Twin Falls for the wedding. We left at 6 in the a.m. and made it to the temple just in time. It was a beautiful ceremony and reminded us of our own sealing a few months back. In between the sealing and the luncheon we headed over to the Falls with the Rasmussen clan that made it up for the wedding. We took off after the luncheon and enjoyed a very relaxing weekend in Sun Valley.

In the car on the way to Sun Valley. Very dangerous and risky move. Not recommended for amateurs. 

On Saturday morning we slept in and grabbed some breakfast in Ketchum. 

We tried to relax the whole weekend but when it came down to it, I was getting observed on Monday and had to prepare my lesson and Bennett had a math test. Therefore, we spent a few hours in the Ketchum Community Library. Go ahead, call us lame and nerdy. We are. 
I have to say though, after going to Sun Valley for 21 years in a row, this was the first time I have stepped foot in the local library. How exciting.  

This summer we were a few hours behind the rest of my family on our way into Sun Valley and they stopped at the infamous Burger Grill before we arrived, meaning we didn't get a chance to eat there in July. Gasp. Meaning Bennett had never experienced the Burger Grill. Double gasp. Naturally we hit it up for lunch. Just as delicious as always. 

We walked around Sun Valley for only a few minutes due to the freezing weather. 

We then headed down to Ketchum again to walk around the shops. 
We of course made a stop to Country Cousins, as is customary with a trip to Sun Valley, and found all sorts of fun and useless trinkets. 

Bennett found this gem of a back scratcher. Typical of Country Cousins, but oh how I love it. 

That night for dinner we went to the Pioneer Saloon to get a Jim Spud. We've been dreaming about this world wonder since July. It failed to disappoint us and has left us dreaming again for our next chance to eat one of these eight months from now. 

Doesn't his face scream pure joy in the fact that he's about to dig in to his very own Jim Spud? 

The rest of the weekend consisted of us lounging around, sleeping, and watching movies as we hibernated in my aunt and uncles beautiful condo. We can't thank them enough for the perfect weekend that we had! 

Tuesday, November 1, 2011


Okay, so we didn't get to hear this phrase at our own place this Halloween season primarily because we live in a basement apartment that no one knows about and therefore didn't get any trick-or-treaters. Tragic, I know. We did, however, get to celebrate Halloween in other ways this year: 

We kicked off the holiday by going to Brian and Chantel's annual pumpkin carving party. A ton of people from our ward showed up and we ended up carving away with some friends: 

Last year, while carving pumpkins together on a double date with one of Bennett's mission companions, I learned an interesting fact about my soon to be husband at the time. He is afraid of pumpkin guts. Seriously. Afraid. Like he wont touch them. I on the other hand have a sick and twisted fascination with pumpkin guts. Hence, I am the designated de-gutter. He is the designated carver. Win-win situation. 

 Our ward/high school friends, the McConkies and their beautiful baby girl

And this is our child. We're proud parents of our little munchkin. 
Tragically, he died a week later when some sort of creature attacked him and spun a very dense web inside of him. 

Our next event was the annual Child family halloween party. We went the lazy route this year when Andrea, Preston and I all pulled out our Student Body Officer sweaters from the back of our closet and went as school spirit promoters from Centerville Junior High. 

We went to a Halloween Arts Festival at the Masonic Temple to see the premiere of a new Halloween film that Chantel was in. Her film was great, although the other films shown were a little too far on the gory side of the Halloween spectrum for an innocent little mind like mine. However, it was so fun to see Chantel's masterpiece. (Sorry, no pictures)

On Saturday we went to our second annual murder mystery dinner hosted by my parents. Check out last years party here. This year was a 70's celebrity theme. My assigned character was Farrah Fawcett (innocent) and Bennett was assigned Ron Howard. We had so much fun getting our costumes all pulled together and playing the part of our celebrities, 70's style. Turns out Bennett was the one who killed a man. All over a stolen pet rock. A bit of an over reaction if you ask me.

I've started my practicum at an elementary school in West Jordan in a 6th grade class (LOVE it- more about that later) and was able to dress up as my easy go-to costume: gypsy. The little kiddos were adorable in their costumes and it was so fun to participate in a classroom Halloween party after having taken a ten year sabbatical from them. 

On Halloween, my mom and dad invited us over to eat chili and donuts, classic Halloween food. Afterwards, we watched the latest episode of Psych (our favorite TV show) which had a Halloweenish plot to it. 

It was a great Halloween for us! Hope you all had a fabulous one as well! 

Thursday, September 29, 2011

I Did Something Really Bad...

I finally broke down and got a Pintrest account.
In the middle of a busy and important semester.
That was not smart.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

So Grateful

This past week I had a little medical scare. As it turns out, everything is perfectly fine, but between discovering the issue, doctor's visits, a biopsy and waiting for lab results to come through, it was a very long week and a half. Although the results were the most positive we could have received, the week of waiting was full of emotions, support and a whole lot of faith. It was a week I would never wish upon anyone, yet looking back on it I came away with so much gratitude and can honestly say that those little moments and tender mercies I had throughout the week made it all worth it. In short, I have had so much gratitude this week for a myriad of things:

  • For a husband and dad who are worthy to give me a blessing at the drop of a hat
  • For the love and support of family
  • For the faith of my family, grandparents, friends and in-laws in regards to fasting
  • That when I allowed myself to think about that dark and scary path as an option, I had the comfort of knowing that I was sealed to Bennett
  • For the scriptures that somehow always have the exact line or phrase that I need to hear 
  • For the peace and comfort that comes from knowing that God is aware of and loves me
  • For a supportive husband that is the rock of our family and is there to hold my hand every step of the way

And on a lighter note, I was grateful that we were able to have a weekend that consisted of this:

Doing a little homework on Friday night (or trying to), where our biggest concerns were trying to solve story problems with the Pythagorean Theorem (him) and plan a p.e. lesson with activities that my 1st graders with an attention span of about nothing could carry out. 

Taking a break from homework to play an intense round of Jenga. Seriously, one of our favorite wedding gifts (thanks, Brit!)

On Saturday afternoon, I left Bennett to do more homework and headed over to my mom's house to make our favorite homemade salsa with her and my sister. It was the first time I had ever helped her make the salsa and after participating in the labor intensive process, I gained a huge appreciation for all those years I would come home from school with a fresh batch of salsa awaiting my return. The hours of working were completely worth it; store bought salsa just doesn't even compare to the homemade stuff- especially my mom's recipe.

First my mom and dad went to a farm in Layton and picked three huge boxes of tomatoes

Then we washed them all, steamed them and peeled the skin of off them 

We chopped up all the other ingredients and combined them all into a few giant pots

And stirred...

And stirred some more...

We put it in the jars

And finally we processed them 

68 jars of salsa and 6 hours later I was heading home with 18 of my very own jars. Let's just say Bennett was a happy husband when I walked in the door holding that much salsa. Should I be embarrassed to admit that we've already eaten an entire jar in less than 24 hours? Heck no.

Later Saturday night we went to stake conference and caught the last half of the BYU-Utah game. Was that not the most pitiful thing you've ever seen? Even Bennett and his family, die hard U fans, were heard saying, "Oh, please don't score another touchdown" when there were only minutes left in the game. But, when Bennett's Utah pride had him wearing a Utah shirt to bed, I stood by my Cougs and wore my BYU shirt for pajamas that night, despite the fact that we fell so far onto the humiliating and shameful side of the spectrum.  Maybe next year.

Monday, August 22, 2011

First Day and a Two Month Mark

Not only did Bennett have his first day of school today... (yes, I made him stand by our door with his backpack on to take a picture...hey, it's a first day of school tradition.)
(Sorry it's blurry, but doesn't he look sharp and ready to face the U?)

...but, it was also our big 2 month anniversary of being married. Neither of us really made mention of it coming up and both thought the other didn't realize it was today. I tried to surprise him by having his favorite oatmeal chocolate chip cookies waiting for him when he got home from school and he tried to surprise me by having flowers waiting for me when I got home from work. Turns out there really is truth to that famous saying, "great minds think alike." Who knew?

Since I haven't gotten around to putting up any wedding pictures yet, I figured today would be fitting to do so. Enjoy!

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Goodbye Summer, We Will Miss You

Last night it hit me that summer is actually ending. We all knew it would happen, you know, since it does every year, but who knew it would end so quickly? Because it hit me so abruptly, I had a little mini meltdown, complete with tears and requiring a fair amount of sympathy from Bennett. Looking back at it after a good nights sleep I can see it was a little irrational, but at the time it seemed completely justified. My reasoning for the meltdown: Bennett and I have had such a fun summer and I’m not seeing a whole lot of “fun time” available for us this upcoming semester. As always, Bennett knows exactly what to say to make me feel better and put my irrational fears at ease and although he assured me that we will make time for fun and will still be just as happy as we are now, I’m still sad to say goodbye to summer. In addition to everything else I’ve posted about- which I admit hasn’t been much- here’s what we’ve been up to the past couple of months: 

Moving into and decorating our new apartment (with the help of my mom and Andrea), which we love! 

We headed up to Bear Lake over the 4th of July for the Rasmussen family reunion. We also went back up the first week of August with Bennett’s immediate family for another round of boating. It was the first time I’ve ever been to Bear Lake, first time I’ve wake boarded, and really one of the first times I’ve done the whole boating thing, aside from those young women’s activities growing up. I never thought I was much of the boater type, but after a couple times on the lake I’ve had to reconsider. I think Bennett and I could be a boat family someday in the future. 

We said good-bye to Bennett’s brother, Tanner, who left on his mission on July 20th to the Farmington New Mexico mission. We miss having him around like crazy and anxiously await his emails every Monday morning. 

Bennett ran his first 10K with Mike! He didn't train too hard for it, but he still did so well-I was so proud! 

We went to the Ogden Rodeo to celebrate the 24th of July 

We’ve had more BBQ’s, farewells, homecomings, weddings and parties than I even thought was possible, but we’ve loved every second of them all. We even tried to go camping, failed miserably and ended up in my parents backyard. 

And of course, a million other simple things that have aided in making this summer one that causes me to cry when it’s over. How embarrassing. If worse comes to worst, I can always hold my breath for the next 3 ½ months of: 

Bennett: working 20 hours a week, 16 credit semester of intense finance classes.
Me: working 10 hours a week, 18 credit semester (last one!), driving from Bountiful to Provo and back 5 days a week. 

Good thing I have the best husband to go through it with who will always make me feel better when the stress hits. Oh, how I love him! 

Monday, August 15, 2011

Sun Valley Family Reunion

 My very favorite part about summer is our annual Child family reunion in Sun Valley, Idaho. The Child family has been going up there every summer for 54 years and each year I leave wondering how I'll ever survive waiting an entire year before I get up there again. We always do the same things, more or less, but each year I think that it was just a little better than the year before. It just keeps getting better. This year it was so fun to have Bennett there and introduce him to my favorite place on earth. Good thing he loved it as much as I do...well almost as much.

We arrived on Monday afternoon and got together for FHE that night. We were split into four different teams and even got matching hats.

We played a ton of different "minute to win it" games. Watching my dad put a nylon on his head and run around trying to knock soda cans down with the baseball in the toe of them was my favorite one to watch. 

We stayed at a condo that had to have been owned by a 90-something year old man who hadn't redecorated since the late 60's/early 70's. We found more treasures there than we had ever dreamed of, including little boys red undies in a drawer, a legitimate Russian hat, and a 16 inch statue of Michaelangleo's The David. We decided to make a game out The David that went something like this:

One couple started with the David in their room at night.
The Object: Get rid of the David and don't be the one to end up with it in your room at 6:00 am.

The Rules:

  1. If you were caught putting the David in someone's room at night, you had to try again in a different room. 
  2. The David must be elevated in the person's room that you put it in. 
  3. Whoever ends up with the David at 6:00 am must carry the said statue around in public for one hour. 

For a complete run down of how the game went check out my sisters blog here.
To entice you to read it, I'll just say that one morning Bennett and I woke up around 5:30 to Ethan climbing the emergency ladder outside our bedroom window with the David in toe yelling "You cheated, mom!"  This is the best picture I could get...

Bennett and I with the David at the family party. At one point someone fashioned a diaper of sorts around David out of pink streamers. I thought it was a nice touch. 

Tuesday day we went to the Sun Valley Golf course and played a round of Putt-Putt.

Like most years, I was lucky enough to have my birthday in Sun Valley. 21 years old! Woot woot!
It was so fun being able to celebrate it with all of my favorite people. 

We had our annual cherry pit spitting contest and Megan and Beth were in the top of the women's division as always, but this year Allie took second! Way to represent. 

On Thursday we had our girl cousin lunch while the guys all hit the golf course.

We headed up to Red Fish Lake on Thursday afternoon. It was possibly the most freezing body of water I have ever been in. At first the boys were the only ones brave enough to enter, but they somehow convinced Andrea and I to join in. We lasted about 15 minutes before I hit the bathrooms and changed back into my sweatshirt. It sure was fun while it lasted though...kind of. 

On our last night we all went to one of the best Italian restaurants this side of of the Mississippi. It was the perfect way to end the trip. 

I'm already counting down the days until next year!