Thursday, December 30, 2010

Superman Returns

Josh was my first after-the-mish crush. You’ve gotta have one.

Adele was the last person after my mission that I dated. You should have one of those and it should be your wife (or husband).

The first time I met Josh was at a summer singles ward bonfire in 2005. He was sitting by the fire, playing the guitar. Perfect guy for me, right? I noticed he had the same guitar book I had and we talked a little bit. I figured he was probably one of those popular guys in the ward.

I remember when Adele first came to the ward. I was friends with her new roommates and noticed the new cute roommate. Adele’s parents also came with her to the ward and I remember her dad sitting through a lesson I taught that Sunday. I remember a faint thought of “I could date your daughter.” going through my head. Her father was involved in the lesson, and apparently, the first person I had talked to in this Blackham family was the man I would someday ask for the hand of Adele from. Somewhat fitting I think. The first time I remember talking with Adele though was at the ward opening social bonfire. I was excited that we got the chance to talk after noticing her when she first arrived. She was really interesting to talk with (and cute), and made me feel like I was some awesome guitar player (I had just gotten done taking basic guitar at BYU, that is a far cry from equaling awesome, but I must thank Prof. Green for helping me put on a good front.)

The next time we really talked was at another singles activity-- hiking up “Y” mountain. That was when I fell in love with his sense of humor—I remember thinking it was exactly. like. mine.

When I saw Adele at another church activity, hiking the “Y,” I was excited for the chance to talk with her and get to know her better. It was here that I began to find out how awesome Adele was. I had such a great time talking with her that my earlier thoughts of asking her on a date grew a lot. Yet, I was so nervous to ask.

A while later he called me late at night to ask me on a date. I was so excited. And nervous. We went miniature golfing and it was a little… awkward. At one point he asked me what books I had recently read. All I could say was, “I read the scriptures…” somewhat sheepishly (cut me a little slack, I had just barely returned from my mission and worked at the MTC).

On a later day, after spending all that day attempting to get up the courage to ask out Adele I finally called her late at night, hoping she would still be awake. She was and she said yes. I was excited. I took her miniature golfing and had fun. It wasn’t the most amazing date I had ever been on, but it was not a poor first date either. I was nervous and I could tell she was nervous too. Why she was nervous I had no idea.

That summer and fall we continued to go on dates here and there or have the occasional random phone conversation into the wee hours of the morning, but in public Josh was a socialite (talking to everybody but me!) and I hated singles social events pretty passionately so… we didn’t see each other all that much.

We went on a few dates after that, and spent time talking and being with each other, but it was so hard for me to tell if she was interested in getting into a relationship. Her dislike of church social events made it hard to find other times to talk with her. When she did come, I would get nervous, and, mostly out of fear that I would be annoying and that she wasn’t interested in me, I would acknowledge that she was there but go around spending time with all the other great people in the ward. Often making glances at her to see what she was doing and who she was talking with. There was one guy in the ward that especially made me nervous to see her talk with him. It was so hard to read Adele for how she was feeling.

And then things petered out and we each dated other people and got lost in the throes of waste-your- time-dating. Or at least I did.

This lasted for a little while, but then we drifted apart. One night I was in the parking lot of the condo complex Adele lived in and was wondering and praying about what I should do. Should I try to pursue a relationship with her? I was beginning to hear that there were other guys now taking her out. Would I be rejected in my attempts? Was she one that would fall in love with me? At that time I got the impression that I could let Adele go for now, but the opportunity to try a relationship with Adele again would come in the future if I wanted it . So trusting my impression, I went on with my life.

Over that year, I observed Josh from afar. He was a friend. He was the kind of guy who was always at church, always passing the sacrament, and always volunteering. He and his brother Justin, the Karoly boys, could always be depended on. Always.

I continued to notice Adele and her sweet amazingness, her great musical talents and her fantastic sense of humor. She also always gave great thoughtful comments in church discussion.

When we invited them to a party, they would come. They left me a cake on my doorstep for my birthday. Josh helped me type up a flyer and make copies when I was stressed out beyond belief. The following February he attended my junior oboe recital.

She continued to impress me even though we rarely spent time together.

Skip to July 2006.

I had recently ended two or three different LAME “relationships.” With guys who were so wrong for me. Ew. I don’t even want to think about them. But the reason for mentioning them at all is because after months of hanging out with guys who were totally wrong for me, when Josh stepped back into my life, it was such an obvious contrast. I’m almost grateful that I had those experiences—just so I could see how crappy they were compared to the real thing.

Earlier in the year, a relationship with another girl ended painfully. I told myself after that relationship that I would give this whole relationship thing one more try, if that didn’t work either, I would give up and dive completely into my work and schooling.

Josh came over to my apartment one evening and hung out until exactly midnight, when BYU’s curfew kicks boys out of your apartment. That in itself was so nice—I was used to hanging out with boys who couldn’t care less about rules and the fact that I wanted to obey those rules. Josh invited me to go see Superman Returns with a group of people later in the week.

I don’t remember why, but I decided to talk with Adele again and remembered why I was interested in her in the first place (besides her cuteness). Conveniently, I found out that all her roommates would be going out of town and that she would be alone, so in an attempt to spend more time with her and not wanting her to think it was a date, I invited her to go with me and others to see Superman Returns. She said yes and in my mind the rest was history… well almost.

The movie was fun. Then Josh and I started chatting more often on gmail chat. He invited me to help him babysit his little niece and nephew.

Inviting her to help me babysit. Yeah. I have no idea where that came from, but she accepted.

This was unlike any date I had ever had. Instead of it being all about me, Josh played with his niece and nephew the whole time, and I had to play with them too, or I would be left out. It was fun. Really fun. At the end of the night I knew (although I had always known) that Josh would be an awesome dad and that he was really fun to hang out with.

AND she even enjoyed it! She was so good with the kids, my niece especially was in love with her. I wasn’t doing this as a test. I knew, for some reason, that she’d be great with kids. But my expectations were blown away with how important she made each kid feel (which she still does with our kids today).

After that we started hanging out all the time. Not only did we have a blast together, but he respected me. He was a good guy.

Ditto. And, she was really cute.

August came, then September, and after hanging out constantly, I started to think about marrying him.

August was rough. We broke up for about a week. One of those, “let’s break up and see how we feel afterward” breakups. She did it, not me. But she also invited me to go to Vegas with her that week (to see her cousin who was also my friend compete in a dance competition). I went and she realized that she was madly in love with me. (All the while, I was nervous I would say something stupid.)

I was also going to graduate in December and had to decide what to do with my life. I had been trying to arrange auditions for a master’s program somewhere, and needed to know what plans to make next. If I was going to be getting married, I had to take that into account in all of my plans. So I began to, you know, hint. Even my oboe professor sneakily asked me about grad schools in front of Josh to try and help out. Josh didn’t seem to take the hint.

Adele claims hinting, but I was waiting to know if she loved me. I was ready to marry her if she was ready to marry me. And in my mind I told myself I would know that it was time to pop the question once I knew that Adele truly loved me. Most likely due to other relationships I had been in, I was waiting for her to say the words “I love you,” without her potentially feeling obligated to say those words after I had. So I would show my love, but never said those words and waited.

Finally one night all my hinting paid off and we decided we might marry each other. Josh surprised me the next weekend with a little scavenger hunt that ended in the canyon at the same bonfire where we first met. He was waiting for me there and sang me a song he had written. Then he proposed with a sparkly diamond ring he had picked out all on his own.

One night we were talking, as couples often do, and Adele was talking about grad school possibilities. She was and is so good at getting me to say what she wanted me to say. For example, she seemed to be able to tell when something was on my mind and was able to ask just the right things to get me to spill the beans without asking me outright, “So what’s on your mind?” I would find myself again and again saying things I planned on holding in. This talk was no exception and out came the I love you and want you to marry me words. So needless to say after this conversation I found out she loved me and was ready to go buy a ring and do the whole shebang.

(the evening before we got married. do we look nervous?)

Not gonna lie… at first I was scared to death. Hinting is one thing, but this was it! You know, a ring on your finger, marriage. The person you are going to be with forever. But I knew it was time, and I knew that he was the guy.

After I knew she loved me and wanted to marry me, I no longer had any doubts. She was who I wanted to be with forever. I loved her, and she brought out the best in me.

He proposed on November 3rd and after a whirlwind of wedding planning we got married December 30th, 2006 in the Sacramento, California LDS temple for time and all eternity.

After we were sealed, I waited for Adele in the lobby of the temple as she got ready for the reception. The minutes felt like hours, but then my sweet wife stepped into the lobby and I was stunned with how gorgeous and wonderful she was. She was so beautiful. That whole day, I didn’t care about having to take a bazillion photos or doing the reception. I was so happy and with my most perfect wife. This is cliché, but I felt like I was walking on clouds. Or at least soft floofy marshmallows.

Now here we are, FOUR years later and I love him more than I ever thought possible. We walked at graduation together, have moved three times, bought a condo, and had TWO sweet, precious, baby boys. Josh will finish his MBA this coming summer, and we will try and figure out where the next stage of life is going to take us.

Each day I am surprised by how much more I am in love with my wife. I could not have done half of what I have done since marrying her, if it were not for Adele. We have two beautifully handsome boys, who bring us so much joy, despite the poop and occasional grumpiness. It blows my mind that I have this for forever.

Our marriage is so great, and that’s all Josh’s fault. He makes me feel like a pretty lady every day of my life.

I have my pretty lady for eternity and I thank my Heavenly Father for the most perfect gift.

Monday, December 13, 2010

two lonely pizzas

On Saturday I went and bought two delicious-looking pizzas (one pepperoni and one chicken and bacon stuffed crust) from Papa Murphy's and

Left them on the front of the car.

And drove away.

Yeah... I didn't realize it until I parked at home and had no pizzas! So I drove back lickety-split to Papa Murphy's and sure enough, right there on University Avenue with the cars speeding by on either side, plastic wrap flapping in the breeze, I saw two lonely pizzas sitting on the dashed white line. I also saw the cute little beanie our next-door-neighbor had just finished making for jr. that I had put on top of the pizzas while buckling him in the backseat.

So I dashed out into the road in the dark and snatched the beanie. A car in the other lane slowed way down like "what is that crazy lady doing? is she going to dive in front of my car?" I realllly wanted to try and rescue the pizzas, but I needed to consider the well-being of my husband, children, and any future children if I got hit by one of the many cars driving straight toward me at full speed who probably wouldn't be able to see me until the last second. And, you know, I think the pizzas had been run over a few times.

So we had frozen pizza for dinner.

Have you done anything embarrassing lately? Or is it only me?

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

How The Josh (almost) Stole Christmas

Every one of the Karolys
Liked Christmas a lot
But this year little Josh had come up with a plot
Did he have to share Christmas? Oh no he did not!

Why should Christmas be wasted on Bennetts and parents

When Josh could have it all for himself and not share it?

The Karoly stockings all hung in a row.
"These stockings," he grinned, "are the first things to go!"

Then he grabbed for the tree to take it as well
When he heard a small voice like the chime of a bell.

He turned around fast, and he saw a small Karoly!
And he saw that the tyke was not smiling merrily.
Bennett stared at him and said "Joshy, why?"
"Why are you taking the Christmas tree? WHY?"

"Why, my sweet little tot," the quick-witted Josh lied,
"There's a light on the tree that won't light on one side."

"So I'm taking it outside in this box, little dear.
I'll fix it up with my tools. Then I'll bring it back here."

And his fib fooled the child. Then Josh patted his head,
And got Bennett a drink so he'd go back to bed.

But just before heeding his next-of-kin's wishes,
Bennett mentioned a fat man (who might be fictitious)--

Josh's eyes opened wide, his mouth stopped its talking
Maybe he was envisioning coal in his stocking?

Whatever the reason for Josh's expression
(We don't know for sure as he made no confession)
When Bennett left, believing the bluff
Josh didn't decide to take all the stuff.

Instead, the next morn he got help from his brother
And they redecorated for Christmas with one another.

Sunday, November 28, 2010


Yesterday Josh Sr was at the store and jr was talking to him on the phone in the living room. I was in the bedroom with Bennett. I came out to tell jr to come into the bedroom with us and...

The front door was open and jr was gone.

I ran outside looking for him, calling his name, and getting no response. And then I saw him all the way across the parking lot wearing no pants, no shoes, and two mismatched socks(you know, because it's cold outside), calling for his daddy. I ran to get him, very upset, and he explained to me in tears, "I want to go to the store with Daddy!"

Way to scare the daylights out of your momma, jr.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Sunday, November 7, 2010


Does he look happy?

Bennett got his helmet off on Thursday. While we ordered our celebration lunch, he laid his head on his daddy's shoulder-- you could just tell that he had missed the warmth and sweetness of skin contact on his head, face, and neck. I love Bennett so much and I'm proud of him for growing so fast while he wore his helmet! In two months time, he went from 10 mm to between 1-2 mm. A blessing.

(He was pretty invincible with that helmet protecting him, and now when he hits his head on something it hurts! Just like Bolt, he's got to realize he doesn't have super powers anymore...)
Align Center

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away...

...a little explorer lost control of his spaceship. It pitched and swayed, careening him through the intergalactic vortex and landing him on an unfamiliar, treacherous-looking planet.

Where was he?

Was the air here even breathable???

And, most importantly, how would he ever get home? Emboldened with a courage only desperation can afford, he surveyed his surroundings.

Somehow, he had to find help. He had to get back home to the loved ones who so desperately needed him, who craved his protection, who relied on him for their very well-being and safety!





Our little explorer was pleasantly surprised to discover intelligent life in this uncharted sector of the universe. Intelligent life that seemed benign!

With universally recognized gestures, he informed the native of the direction in which he needed to go.

What luck! The native intimated that he, himself, just happened to be an expert on space travel.

He got to work at once...

and soon presented a plan to his extraterrestrial counterpart.

Finding himself persuaded, the little explorer climbed the stairs to the roof...

and waited.

But nothing seemed to be happening.

Back at square one, a somewhat abashed aeronautical expert realized he had miscalculated his friend's Reduced Mass x Volume x Speed of Ascent ÷ Vector Direction. He would have to come up with a new plan.

Ah ha! He knew just the ticket: A ride in his rocket ship!

Buckled in, the adventurers prepared for takeoff.

As departure became imminent, however, one of our adventurers found himself increasingly concerned. Was this spacecraft approved by the Intergalactic Emissions Association?

10... 9... 8... 7...

It was for that reason, and that reason only, that he entreated his colleague to terminate launch preparations immediately. (It had nothing to do with a sudden fear of heights, for example.)

And, admitting that the cute Ewok girl back home probably could hold her own without him a little longer (earlier mention of her dire need for his protection perhaps being just a tad exaggerated)...

...our little friend decided to continue his exploration of a new planet. On official scouting business, of course.