6.24.2011

Another Crazy Week

After I felt all "caught up" last Friday, the week just blew by again. Especially the weekends, those go too fast. We drove out to Simi to hang out with my parents for the weekend and it turns out Allyson and Peter were passing through on their way to a wedding literally 3 miles from our apartment. I was glad we got to see them for part of Saturday and Sunday nonetheless. On Saturday we immediately started our laundry, washed and waxed Mike's car, got showered and I headed off to Laura's baby shower. It was awesome to see a lot of familiar faces and then I took family photos for Laura and Cameron with Evelyn and they turned out fantastic.


Vasty & Jayden, Laura & Evelyn - their husbands set them up for future husband and wife ;)

Evelyn Rose

Evelyn Rose

Morrissette family portraits


After a quick bite to eat with my family, Dad decided we were taking the second leather couch since they had already found replacements from the first we took for the apartment. The original plan was to come back to the apartment that night, but I was aching for time with my parents so we stayed over another night, which I was REALLY grateful for. I have such an awesome, supportive husband. We spent most all of Sunday with my parents and headed home. I miss them a ton still and hold on to every moment I get since I don't live there anymore. Each day with them is more special to me now than ever, I've turned into a huge sap.

On Monday and Tuesday I was so glued to photo editing that I didn't leave the apartment all day. I've learned this is VERY bad for me to not vary my activities, because even though I was productive, I didn't physically go anywhere so some part of my mind didn't think I was a good girl (which I wasn't, I played hooky from the gym). After a long talk with Michael I got everything out of my system and realized I'm happier when I set goals for myself and make a to-do list. Our whiteboard on the fridge now lists things I can do if I ever linger on only one project.

The learning center I work for seems like they'll be giving me two classes to teach instead of one, which I was warned I may only get one, but no one else prepared a 7th grade syllabus and course schedule but me! So we're in luck. I'm glad to be bringing some income to the table. We were so blessed from the wedding that we have a great start and were able to save a good portion of the gift cards we received. Also work-related, Michael is coming up on his 1-year with SG so we'll see what happens! Our next goal is to get enough combined monthly income to get an apartment or condo mortgage closer to the Irvine area.

I haven't made any fast friends at church yet, and I have Vasty and Jeremy nearby, so I went to visit on Thursday and had an awesome time talking and hanging out with her cute boys. We'll take family photos of them soon, which I'm excited for. I love seeing the shots as I catch them and playing around, and then seeing the final editing product, so cool. I've added that family to my prayers, they're so awesome. That night Mom and Dad Burr were in the area so we went to Knott's Berry Farm, ate at Pink's Hot dogs, and saw a show or two and rode the Pony Express.

Today I drove down to SG and joined Michael and his co-workers for "Sleepy Hour" AKA get paid to build company community and drink and be merry. We got silly on our shirley temples. Traffic in Orange County is horrible. I plan to never drive before 9 AM or after 3 PM if I can help it.

Us outside The Cannery for Sleepy Hour

6.16.2011

Getting Settled, Wedding Photos, Little Lantern Photography

Our first few weeks together have been great. I love cleaning house and cooking (ask me again in ten years and that may change, but right now I'm good :) and hanging out with my husband when he gets home from work. Work for Mike has been slow, and then all of a sudden got extremely busy. They'll be moving to a bigger building, still in Newport Beach, by the end of the month. Hopefully he'll also find a niche to work and progress in the company over time. He's great at listening, working hard and making people feel valued and they've definitely noticed that.

I got over my cold fairly quickly, I think it was just my body needing a few days to recover from the wedding and honeymoon rush. It took me a few days to get comfortable being on my own in the apartment while Mike is at work, but I think I'm managing. It's hard to feel productive when you don't have a set schedule each day and don't have to get out of your pajamas... all day. I've managed to make it to the gym, clean, cook, make my 8th grade syllabus for work, organize the gifts we got, and we stay out of trouble with a trip to Disneyland here and there since it's so close, and watching the show "The First 48" on Netflix. We got hooked on the honeymoon when we were cooling off in the hotel room and can't stop watching. Also, I've discovered that since there are a lot of Vietnamese natives that live around here, I'm sorry but there are also SO many bad drivers. For instance, today I saw someone reversing in the middle of an intersection because the light turned from green to yellow. I've also gotten my first (and hopefully last) parking ticket - stupid street sweeper schedule - and am getting used to our neighbors. A few of the people on our street don't have storage spaces, so they take all of the parking space on the street and use their vans full of stuff to park there. Crazy.

Other exciting events include: several times a day, someone nearby plays "La Cucaracha" on a loud car horn; a guy walks around honking a bicycle horn from 2 to 6 or 7 PM selling ice cream; and last week a transformer blew up behind another apartment building and caught several trash cans and trees on fire. I went to the gym, took a hot shower while we still had hot water, and did some grocery shopping until the power came back on. Exciting times! Mom & Dad Burr came over one evening and we made tacos and Terri's famous beans. Yay company!

Last weekend we hung out at my parents' house for a day since they were gone to Nevada for Dad's birthday (He has the same birthday as Terri! Small world :). Junior (Mom's cat) really missed us and was super cuddly. We spent some time at Mike & Diana Gwynn's wedding reception in the evening and then headed back to the apartment.

This week we went to Disneyland, and yesterday all of the Burrs got together at David & Terri's and went out to a local barbecue eatery in Chino called Dickey's Barbecue Pit. The food there is YUM and the meat falls off the bone. Yum yum yum. It was nice to see family after getting used to being on our own.

Yesterday I worked all day on our photography website and got it up and running! It still needs work, but at least we have a portfolio going. Check it out!! The Little Lantern Photography

And, if you have a Facebook profile, "Like" us! Facebook: The Little Lantern Photography

I've been working my butt off editing our wedding photos... it's been SO FUN!! I'm so happy with how they turned out. So far we just have the temple ones edited, and haven't even gotten started on the ring ceremony and reception. Every time I see a photo of my parents and my sister and I, I get weepy. :sigh: Need to visit!!! We'll be visiting my parents this weekend for Father's Day since I'll already be out there for Laura's baby shower. Yay! Here are just a few of our photos. The complete album is here. We'll hopefully be making a private password-access album for families so you can download the full-quality photos for printing.









6.07.2011

Aloha Honeymoon

While Mike is at work I have some time to catch up and post honeymoon pictures. All of them are posted on our FB album as well.

After the wedding, we returned Brother Walden's Mustang to his house and went back to my house, changed, organized and grabbed everything we needed before heading out to Garden Grove. My parents and Allyson and Peter made it home as well and we helped unload everything. The back of Peter's truck was full of gifts, it was insane. Then after the long drive to the apartment, we unloaded our stuff and well, you know :) Let's keep this PG and say we played hide and seek. haha. I won't mention what days we played hide and seek on the honeymoon either, it just goes without saying :P

On Sunday, Dad Burr and Amanda (Burr) drove us to the airport, and we were off! When we arrived at the Honolulu airport it was nice and humid. We had a guy from Costco "lei" us and take our bags and drive us to the Aston Waikiki Beach hotel. Good thing too, because we were exhausted from the non-stop wedding day and jet lag. When we got to our room however, I thought I had an "ocean view" room. Apparently that meant you step out onto your balcony, lean over and look out to the left, and there's your view. We bit the bullet and upgraded a little more to get the "ocean front" room we really wanted. This may be our only Hawaii trip for a long time so we wanted it to be the best. When we got to the final room, the AC was sooooo slow! We called the front desk to see if they had fans and they didn't (!) so we waited it out. They asked if they could send a technician and we said no, do it tomorrow. 20 minutes later (we had already gone to bed), knock knock and here's the technician. Geez. So he looks at it and sets it to stay on. Then, 20 minutes later (we've gone to bed and are super sleepy) the phone rings. (Seriously?!) and it's someone asking if the technician came. I gave a very blunt yes and he says "OK.... ... thanks!" "BYE." Check your clocks people! We're exhausted! haha.



The next morning, Memorial Day Monday, the sun rose very early, so we were able to fully enjoy the ocean view, and wow it was awesome. We were excited to do tourist-y activities so we took a tram out to Pearl Harbor. As we got there, some people had extra tickets for the 10 AM boat ride to the USS Arizona Memorial, so we only had to wait a half hour instead of two hours. We explored displays of the events leading up to the Oahu bombings, watched some videos, and enjoyed the atmosphere. Very cool stuff. The AZ memorial itself is beautiful and humbling. So crazy how so many hundreds are entombed there. Some survivors chose to be buried there with them.

Us on the boat ride



One of the tubes on the USS AZ

Lookout tower on top of the USS AZ

List of those who died, along with a list of those interred here who survived (lower left corner)

USS AZ Memorial



When we got back to the hotel we were exhausted. The heat and humidity just sapped all of our energy. (Well, not all ;) Later on we found an all-you-can-eat buffet with crab legs, YUM. We were so on it. So good. We walked around the main drag by the beach and saw a few street shows, did a little shopping. There was a group of black students who put together some tricks, mostly jokes and flips, which were pretty funny. We brought my mini laptop to a Starbucks for free internet off of Kuhio and got to watch hookers pick up guys/get picked up (I think this just turned PG-13). They stick out because they wear these specific types of heels, and they walk up and down and up and down the street. It was like watching real-life Sims.

Rainbow view from the hotel

The next morning we went to Duke's restaurant down the street, as was recommended by some Australians we talked to on the Pearl Harbor tram, and stuffed ourselves with their breakfast buffet. It was at that point that Michael and I looked at each other and said "We gotta stop this, we're making ourselves sick" haha. No more stuffing face, you just don't feel good. We had planned to go to the Polynesian Cultural Center that day, but they couldn't find our reservation just by our names. After many phone calls, Laura's friend who had reserved our tickets gave us the confirmation number, and viola, they found our tickets (under our names... don't know why it didn't pop up earlier!). However it was past the time of the last bus pickup, so we rescheduled them for Wednesday. We decided to do a temple session and rent a car so we could explore at our leisure. Driving up the eastern coast of Oahu and coming through a tunnel, you see these BEAUTIFUL mountains formed by volcanic activity, covered in greenery. We were able to see what real Hawaii is like outside of the tourist-epicenter of Waikiki. The PCC is right next to the temple in Laie, and everything was beautiful. Families live together in order to afford their housing, most have two jobs (and one is tourism related), and have just what they need and nothing more. An eye-opener compared to the extravagant lifestyles we're used to seeing in California. The inside of the temple was beautiful and we also checked out the visitor's center and talked to the sister missionaries. Then we drove further up North Shore and stopped in at Turtle Bay Resort. The difference between here and Waikiki was night and day - North Shore is much more relaxing. We had a beachside dinner at Ola's, it was romantic and delicious, everything we'd hoped for. It was dark out when we left, so we drove down H2 and H1 highways back to the hotel.

View on the east coast after the tunnel

Kelly @ the Laie Temple

Laie Temple

Turtle Bay Resort

Romantic dinner we won't forget

Wednesday was jam-packed with the PCC all day. Our tour guide was awesome, his name is Germaine Jeffrey (atypical of a New Zealander, he liked to point out) and we called him Cousin Maine. The whole day was fun, entertaining, and all of the staff were friendly (and most likely nearly all LDS). They called everyone cousin, made jokes, treated us like friends. The village presentations were great. After the Tahitian dance lessons, all of a sudden it started pouring rain. We hung out in one of the covered sitting areas for awhile, then saw the rest of the shows. Samoa's was funny, Aotearoa's (New Zealand) was intense - the guys slap their chest raw during their dances. After picking up some souvenirs for Matt and Amy's boys, we headed to the luau. Yum! The kalua pig was great. The presentation was a bit cheesy at times but overall it was nice. The night show - Ha, The Breath of Life - was so good it could've been Disney quality. We were especially impressed by the fire dancers - so intense! Photos weren't allowed, but I'll remember it for a looooong time. On the bus ride home, our bus driver kept everyone awake with jokes and silly antics, like having us pretend to flick our boogers at passing tour buses, haha. Entertaining but exhausting.

Tonga Village
PCC scenery

Thursday we used as our designated relax-day because that's mainly what we wanted to do. We didn't get to see all of the tourism sites or do all of the activities we wanted, but we did want to relax, big time. We said goodbye to Oahu by watching the hookers off of Kuhio, and walking along the beach. On Friday we grabbed some breakfast right before it started pouring rain. Luckily we were safely taken to the airport and flew home. We landed early, but there were some malfunctions with the ramp they connect to the door, so we had to wait. When my parents and Ozzy finally were able to get us, it was nice to be on our way to Simi.

Aloha Hawaii sunset

The next morning we opened gifts (which took two hours) and lazed around. After getting showers, we made stops by the Walden's, Burr's, and other places to drop off gifts. My Mom and Dad took us out to Chili's for their anniversary (Happy Anniversary! Thanks for spending it with us) and then we packed up what we could and headed to Orange County. Home sweet home. I caught a small cold but am mostly over it :crosses fingers: though it's really made me slow down. It's no fun when you can't breathe through your nose at all.

Still sleepy, opening gifts, including a blanket Terri made

Overall we're very happy to be home and getting back into the daily grind (booo work). I've picked up a few photo gigs so I'm very excited about that.

6.05.2011

Wedding Highlights 5.28.11

We're officially Da Burrs now! Our internet network says so. In this post I'm going to use some photos that were tagged of us on Facebook from Kevin Phair and others. When we get our pictures back and edit them, then we'll post later with some of our favorites, including an album for family to see.

Sarah Hays did an amazing job on my wedding hair and on my bridesmaids' hair. If you need ANYthing (cut, color, style) her # is 805-501-7754. I could hardly sleep the night before, and Ozzy woke me up at 4:45 AM, so that was that. Once my hair was done I REALLY felt like a bride. Mike picked me up and we headed to the temple. If it weren't for Cameron and Laura being our escorts and helping us find where to go, we would've had a confusing time, but they were such a big help. We were sealed in room ten, which I had never seen before. Usually when you come with a group to do sealings you go to the main floor with a hallway of rooms in a pinkish shade. This one was bright white. Brother Dean (he loves the single adults and remembered me) said some awesome stuff about Jesus Christ and families, and beforehand he asked me if there were some really great people waiting outside the temple for us and I said yes (it hit really close to home). He said we'll be so blessed for taking this important step. I of course bawled my eyes out.

Finally after the schedule running 1.5 hours late and having to wait for the couples ahead of us, we made our grand exit and it felt great. Sorry again for everyone that had to wait so long, it was the only hitch the day came with.

The grand exit from the LA temple

My amazing family

After pictures, everyone took off and Sister McClellan helped us get some awesome shots around the temple. She really helped the whole photo experience run smoothly even when we were crunched for time. Then we were off straight to the venue. My Dad walked me down the aisle and we had a really nice ring ceremony. 

A Dad's greatest joy, getting to walk his daughter down the aisle

Exchanging rings


Happy recessional


We then took more photos while guests had appetizers and socialized, then made our grand entrance doing a silly dance (and saw how the candy table was EMPTY. So glad I did that, it was a big hit). Then we had our first dance to Dean Martin's "Kiss" which was a nice touch with regards to the Spencer family. Michael danced with his mom, then I danced with my dad. At first he couldn't speak and just held me to his cheek. I couldn't help but want to cry more.


My Daddy and I


The rest of the night is kind of a blur. Dinner, trying to say hello to everyone (sorry we missed some of you!), toasts, money dance, cake cutting, dancing, getaway. During the toasts my sister made me cry, and my Dad made me cry big time when he said I looked like Claudia (Carchia) Spencer (his mom who passed when I was a few months old but got to hold me) and Granny Pauline (Whetstine) on my Mom's side. I'll always treasure that. The red velvet cake tasted great, the little that we got, but my parents had the top layer saved which was spice cake with cream cheese and raspberry filling, so we're waiting maybe a month to take care of that, not a year. haha. I'm also glad we did the money dance and we were both so shocked at the amount of gifts we received - you all have helped us stay in the black! We're humbled by the amazing friends we have in all places. Before we knew it we were making our getaway - to me it seemed like only 9 PM but it was actually after 10. Crazy. Brother Walden let us borrow his classic Mustang convertible, which was awesome. Vroom vrooooooom! Thank you all again for sharing our memorable day.

Yum. Skiff's cake


My niece Sydney caught the bouquet. We reminded Daniel he's a bit too old for her.


I always want to make my Dad proud. Love you Dad!