Thursday, April 24, 2014


this post is a bit belated, but last tuesday was the last day of the semester and finals time usually means that we stop cooking (not that we do a lot of that anyway...) and start eating a lot of granola bars and pop tarts. obviously, not the best fare. instead of the normal "hmmm, you thinking cereal? yeah, me too." we decided to try out this newer place on ninth east called emanuel's. I was jonesing for some good mexican food and it was my night to choose (another new rule that came out of this experience). I saw that emanuel's had a good rating on urbanspoon, so once phil got home from scouts (aka: tying knots and then playing dodge ball with a bunch of 11 year old boys) we jetted over there. however, when we pulled in, parked, and had nearly jumped out of the car (we get a little excited when we're hungry) we realized that phil didn't have his wallet with him and, duh, of course I didn't have mine (because only a responsible adult/parent/human would have remembered their's). SO we drove back home and then back to emanuel's, and that was tons of fun. no, but seriously, simon was chilling in his carseat and phil and I got to chat, so it was all good.

and then it got better
because I ordered these massive carne asada nachos
and BOOM! life was complete and beautiful. and I am kicking
myself for not having the presence of mind to have taken a
photo of the beauty that was those nachos. then again, I did forget
something as essential as a wallet, so we need to just stop expecting very much
 from me at all. and, besides, once those nachos hit the table, it was go time
and I forgot that I even had a camera or a husband or a baby
because NACHOS! oh, and phil got this awesome chimichanga,
but I didn't take much time to look at it because I only had eyes
 for the beloved layers of chips and cheese and goodness on my plate.

this is all to say that emanuel's is crazy delicious, but
if you go, don't forget your wallet because you don't want anything
to get between you and those nachos. or that chimichanga.
(but you're really just gonna want the nachos. just saying.)

4 months

simon is four months old (and a few days), and he is sure getting fun. his
gummy smiles and explosive laughs have made him the most endearing little fellow.
 he enjoys eating his hands and anything that he gets into his hands. when we 
wake up in the morning, we often find that this little guy is already awake
because he'll just be babbling and cooing at himself over in his crib.
I have a feeling that he is going to take after his chatty momma. 

Friday, April 18, 2014

spring stroll

you guys! things are getting warm and green and beautiful around here.
I love it.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

oh, hey.

from life as of recent

Sunday, April 13, 2014

date night choices

I don't know if you've ever had this problem, but when phil and
I go out on dates we aren't good at being decisive about where we eat. 
so, here we are: it's friday night. simon's with grandma. 
windows are down and we're cruising along center street, 
and the all-too-familiar conversation begins anew:

"what do you want to eat?"
"hmmm, I don't know. what do you want to eat?" 
and then in Jungle Book-esque fashion (remember that scene with the vultures?)
we somehow end up asking that question 
again and again
over the next hour driving around the provo/orem area in an effort 
to find a place that will satisfy our wishy-washy minds. 

what about______? asks phil. 
no. not feeling that. says laurel. 
what about ______? asks laurel. 
okay, great. says phil. 
wait, hmmm, maybe not. says laurel.
sigh. says phil.

so, in all honestly, it's my fault that we're cruising around progressing through the stages of hungry to hurustrated to hangry. we've been down this path before and usually remedy it by just giving up and going to our classic fall-back, el gallo giro (which we LOVE!). yet, we wanted to "try something new!" and "go to that new [insert nationality] place!" but somehow that wasn't flying this time. 

at one point, I'm in the passenger seat with my head on my knees and I'm like, "I have a problem" and phil suggests that he just choose with finality where we dine and that I cannot say anything. he drives us back to center street and back to the restaurant that we had almost entered nearly an hour before (like, an hour before we had parked, walked to and opened the door to this restaurant, and on the very cusp of entering I said, "nah" and we kept going on our vain vain search). and, you know what? it was great! and that silly hour spent analyzing every eating establishment's merits melted away into fry-sauced cover sp fries and a glorious bowl of fettuccine. and it was just the two of us laughing, and it was wonderful. 

and, once our satisfied bellies made us rational humans again,
we came up with a new date night rule:
have snacks in the car for the ride.

^^do you see his hunger-driven determination?

Friday, April 11, 2014

today I'm thinking...

...that sometimes I am too hard on myself. it's always the same reflections: I didn't put in enough effort. I slacked off. I didn't use my time well. I didn't prepare as I should have. I put something aside until the last minute and am now reaping the less-than-desirable consequences. how do I find balance in not being too hard on myself while still maintaining certain exceptions? should I aspire less? lower my expectations? those don't seem like the right answers to me. how do you reconcile believed personal capacity to what you actually produce?  how do you let go of the guilt that comes when you do fall short of what you knew you could do but did not do?

... that those homemade thin mints are going to be a part of every meal today. they're almost gone and, you know, that was a full stick of butter. and now it's in me. well, phil ate one, so that brings it down to, like, 1/2 a stick? I shouldn't think this way. I should just think, "THIN MINTS!"

... about white and black and gold and how to incorporate so much more of those colors into decorating. and felt balls. I need to incorporate more felt ball garlands.

...that I cry too easily and say sorry too much. I got a not-so-wonderful grade on a rough draft of a term paper and ended up having to hold back the tears when discussing it with the professor. he was so kind and afterwards I felt silly. laurel, laurel, laurel. there's no drama. no one died. reel it in, mama.

...about the blossoms outside and how grateful I am that spring is here and that I can wear the birks without socks. because when I wear them with socks, I look like my high school physics teacher. he was awesome though, so it's a win-win. but, the toes are thankful for the air.

Saturday, April 5, 2014

this morning

my parents are in town this weekend
which means that we'll have in depth conversations
while sitting on the stairs, lying on the ground,
kneeling next to beds, leaning against counters,
cross-legged on the floor, or sitting in chairs (like normal people).
I love that we love to talk anywhere and everywhere
about everything.

since they're here, this morning we listened to the wonderful 
broadcast of our church's biannual general conference in the 
living room together. my dad took these pictures of this 
chunky simon boy and my dear phil while we watched.


Friday, April 4, 2014

bon week-end!

and happy weekend!

this weekend will be:
this man of mine
this little guy

a hopeful jaunt in this beautiful weather
(as long as it stays beautiful. be nice, utah.)
listening to our church's general conference on
saturday and sunday. I'm excited for the messages
and hope to gain  insight and feel inspired. 

merry weekend!

Tuesday, April 1, 2014


yeah, we pull off the whole matching mom-and-son jailbird outfits. didn't you know? it's a thing right now.
but only right now and only here at my house.  

and, it was unintentional/
perhaps a manifestation of my inner psyche.

so, today while showering (yes, I know I made you think I didn't do that here), I had a rush of happy thoughts which, summed up, were, "yeah, life is so good!"  

these thoughts, however, may have been influenced by the fact that this was,
1.) during one of simon's long naps (bless that baby!) which 
2.) allowed me an extended, hot shower at
3.) 11am on my
4.) day off from school where
5.) I ate pumpkin chocolate chip bread and
6.) pizza quesadillas and
7.) watched a funny french play.

so, all circumstances considered, life is grand.

but, even on fussy baby dirty hair woke up to put that bloody binky back in his mouth all night long wore leggings all day didn't get out of the house it's too cold outside I just want to nap I'm in a crazy funk moody yuck I miss phil when he's at school/work I just need an ugly cry in the bathroom tests are looming we forgot to get food and gas and we're eating cereal for dinner days, life is still so good to us and

I'm grateful and happy to be where we are, to have each other, to have loving families, to be healthy and to, simply, just
be alive.

and for ice cream.
always for ice cream.

five years

today marks 5 years since I left to spend a year and a half in new caledonia. 
I'm so grateful for all the goodness, understanding, and growth that has come to me in 
these past 5 years, but I am thankful especially for those blessed eighteen months on that 
small island in the south pacific among those kind people. I may still have many
 resulting freckles and a fear of "mille pattes," but on a day like today, 
I could again use a little bit of that new cal sun 
and the warmth of those dear friends.

^^ best juice EVER!

^^ a very polite note signed  from "her husband"