Friday, December 31, 2010

Our 2010

I've decided to go public again. My friends keep telling me their invitation to view this blog has expired. Lame. So come one, come all, check out the awesome happenings of the Lees. Apparently I don't care anymore if everyone in the world wants to creep around and read Russ & Aub.

This month's post is a recap of our year.

We moved into Nana's basement and I started student teaching at AF Junior High. I had no idea all the challenges and hilarity that were in store for me when this picture was taken on my first day. We got called as primary teachers.

Russ made me a spectacular dinner for Valentine's Day and I learned that I love sweet potatoes. We watched a lot of cool old movies with Nana. I loved student teaching.

My good friend Spencer Ring came back from his mission and we had Asian Night, where we ate a ton of Japanese food, talked about Japanese culture, and made a huge mess of the kitchen. It was awesome, but it would have been even better if Tiffani-chan had been there.

I finished my student teaching and graduated from BYU. Russ was so supportive and the best cheerleader I could have asked for.

Align Center
I went to San Francisco to train for my summer job, and Katie joined me at the end. We had the best time. I celebrated my 23rd birthday with strawberry pie.

While the rest of my family was in Disneyland, Russ and I watched this puppy. I started teaching for the Institute of Reading Development and Russ started working at the airport.

We lit sparklers, went swimming, and went to a ton of parades. All month long. It was fabulous. Happy Birthday America.

We hiked Timp. Twice. It was hard. We moved to Salt Lake and I started teaching at Midvale Middle. It was hard. We celebrated our 2nd anniversary at the Pie Pizzeria. I spend a lot of money on cardigans - a teacher can never have enough.


We went to a lot of farms and drank a lot of cider. Russ turned 25 and we bought a couch. I began to regret those bangs.

We carved pumpkins with Jared and Elle, and then spent Halloween watching Teen Wolf and eating pizza and hiding quietly when kids came to the door because we forgot to buy candy for anyone but ourselves.

Our car was rear-ended and we got an awesome rental car for two weeks. Russ worked hard at school and I worked hard at not strangling any students. We had a lovely Thanksgiving at the Lees.

We got to go to the Christmas concert with David Archuleta and loved it. We had a really fun Christmas with my family in American Fork. Russ finished his finals and we both enjoyed two weeks off. We filled the time with parties, movies, ice skating, caroling, eating, staying up late, sleeping in late, roller skating, and Limbo. I liked all of it except Limbo. We bought a car.

Things we are looking forward to in 2011:
  • Me finishing my first year of teaching
  • Having the summer off - I still can't believe that's going to happen
  • Spring Break
  • Saving our money and going on cool trips
  • Russell's sister Erin's wedding to Sam
  • Giving talks in church on Sunday

Friday, December 3, 2010


Why is it that I impatiently wait for others to update their blogs, when I spend so little time doing so myself? Embarrassing.

Since my last post...

We got rear-ended and our car was thankfully totaled. Goodbye Jetta, I won't miss you and all your unreliable ways. We are now in that awkward stage where the insurance company can't justify us keeping the rental car while we search for a new one. So we take Trax everywhere. I love public transportation and I think it is grossly underused in Utah. I also like listening to the weird crazy bums that choose to sit next to me and lie about being a Marine in Afghanistan, an undercover cop that protects the homeless, and Dallin H. Oaks' nephew. Plus I get to stroll through Temple Square on my way home and it's so pretty, all covered in lights.

I pulled out our box of Christmas decorations last night and was disappointed to find that we only have three items: a small nativity scene from Diane, a Merry Christmas pillow sewn by Katie, and a Happy Holidays wall hanging I bought from Bed Bath & Beyond that got chipped in our moving process. We don't even have a tree! That is my goal this weekend: find a tiny tree and lights and ornaments to go on it.

We had a lovely Thanksgiving in Logan. My favorite dish was Konrad's creamed corn topped with Parmesan cheese. We went to the Nutcracker ballet and I loved it. I watched White Christmas for the first time and slept in till 11 every single day.

My experience in the classroom is getting better and better. My students are hilarious, and if I focus on that instead of their negative qualities, I am happier and it sustains me through the day. Yesterday a boy came in with Funyons. He had them opened only about ten seconds before their stench reached my nostrils and I ordered him to finish the offending chips in the hall and then throw them away out there. HA. But the smell lingered. Kids were complaining loudly and opening windows and then one kid named Eduardo said, "I'll take care of this, Madame Lee." He pulled a can of Axe body spray from his backpack and proceeded to spray it in every nook and cranny of the room. I don't know which smell was worse, the horrendous Funyons or the overpowering Axe, but it sure made my day.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Retail Therapy

Today was a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day. I didn't have time to shower and put on ugly clothes, including a turtleneck that attempted to suffocate me all day. I got stuck teaching calligraphy as a homeroom enrichment, and it's so boring I almost put myself to sleep. I dropped my lunch tray on the ground, scattering chicken teriaki everywhere. My chocolate milk exploded on me. The vice principal came in to observe my class. My students were absolutely rotten without a second thought to my sanity...or authority for that matter. I yelled at them and then felt worse. Russell couldn't pick me up until 6:00, which means I was stuck at the school in my ugly uncomfortable outfit by myself, correcting a mound of papers and watching reruns of The O.C. online.


Then he picked me up and was sweet to me. He took me to get some dinner and then we went to a shoe store, where he let me get a pair of shoes I have wanted for a long time:
Bahahahaha. Just kidding. I got Oxfords, but I can't find a picture of them on the web.

But I LOVE them.

Sunday, October 31, 2010

How Was Your Halloween?

Ours was perfect. We slept in until 11, went to the gym, and ate a late breakfast at Village Inn. We redeemed some coupons for free cookies and put up drapes in our house. We went to the grocery store and saw some appalling costumes. We had pizza and apple cider while watching "Teen Wolf."
The absolute best part is when Scott locks himself in the bathroom and is horrified by his sudden wolfish appearance. His dad comes to the door and tells him to open up and after awhile, he opens the door to see this:
So unexpected, and so hilarious.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

If It Weren't For Him...

...I would still think that Chuck Norris was a character from a tall tale, like Paul Bunyon.

...My feet would never get rubbed.

...I wouldn't open my phone during the day to find texts like this: "I'm listening to Les Mis music and crying like a fool" or "Baby!" or "My boss isn't here and the riffraff employees are getting dangerously belligerent."

...I would never have such animosity for ESPN.

...Our toilet would still be clogged.

...There would be no one to eat all the weird leftover food I don't want.

...I would never know about great music like Sigur Ros and Arcade Fire and Pinback and Band of Horses.

...I wouldn't be such a harsh critic of movies.

...I would never have jumped off a bridge into the River Seine.

...I would never feel so loved.

Monday, October 4, 2010


Russ approached me tonight and said, "Our babies are going to be malnourished and have scurvy and bow legs if your diet is just Ramen and fruit snacks."

I had no retaliation, because he's right. Not about the scurvy, but about my pathetic diet.

Those who know me well know that I can't cook. Really. My mom is an excellent cook, and somehow none of her skills got passed down to me. I've been married for two years and I can count all the meals I have made on one hand.

I need to be better. So I am asking you, if you have any pity, to send me your recipes. Easy ones. So easy an idiot could make them. That's what I am in the kitchen. Just to be sure, I asked Russell, "I'm not that bad am I?" and he said "I plead the fifth."

If you have anything good and easy that is more healthy than Ramen, email me at

Thank you ahead of time.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Private? Good Idea

You know you need to privatize your blog when lots of your students mysteriously know way too much about your personal life.

Leave a comment with your email if you'd like to stay informed on our lives and still enjoy my once-a-month update. Haha.

Because no blog post is truly complete without a picture, here's one of Sammy.
Love him.

Sunday, August 29, 2010


August has been a busy month for the Lees. Have a looksie:
I got straight bangs cut. Except for that weird identity crisis 2 years ago when I dyed my hair brown, I haven't changed my hair in about six years, so that's been fun.
We moved from Pleasant Grove to Salt Lake City. We live in a cozy little apartment on Capitol Hill. Here's a picture of our living room, the only presentable room in our house. Russ re-energized our bookshelf with some blue spray paint and some sweet tree art. He's quite talented. Having our own space again is fun, but we really miss Nana. Russ got a new bike. He rides it all over town and lets me take the car.
My feet have been killing me all summer, standing all day long, so I bought some old lady Naturalizers. The first day I wore them, they gave me sores and blisters. I am at my wit's end. I have tried all sorts of Dr. Scholl's inserts that have not helped at all. What am I doing wrong?I finished my summer teaching job with the Institute of Reading Development. It made for a challenging, hectic, and busy summer. I got really good at communicating with parents and keeping six-year-old tantrums to a minimum. I learned a lot and it provided me with tons of practice for what I do now....Which is run my own classroom. I started teaching French last week at Midvale Middle. I've wanted to be a teacher for as long as I can remember. It was a crazy first week and I am still learning so much, but it really is a dream come true.I already have papers to go through.
My in-laws blew up this picture of the Eiffel Tower for my birthday. It is the most awesome decoration in my classroom and all my students love it.
It's such a delight to see my name over the door every morning when I walk in, even though the janitor went a bit hog wild with the hot glue gun.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

I Don't Get It

This picture makes me feel so weird.

WHY is Khloe a giantess?

Who in the world gave this bizarre family their own TV show?

And why am I even talking about them at all?

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Love & The Bachelorette

Katie got me into this season of "The Bachelorette." I watched every episode and thoroughly enjoyed all the drama, the cheesy one-liners, and especially the wussy weatherman.

I wish the dates weren't so outlandish, like being whisked away to a heart-shaped island or flying in a private helicopter over Icelandic volcanoes. Honestly. The way you get to know someone is by by seeing them in everyday situations. I realize this is coming from someone who fell in love with a boy while sitting on the top of the Arc de Triomphe and eating nutella crepes, but I have also loved cooking with that boy and scrubbing mold together off the nasty bathroom walls of our first apartment and going through the McDonald's drive-thru and watching him hold babies and having fun chats about nothing in the middle of the night.

I like Ali and think she is adorable. However, I am incredibly sad that she felt compelled to get so much plastic surgery after the season. Her bottom lip is suddenly enormous, her cheekbones are high and her jaw is much more pronounced, and her nose looks like Michael Jackson's. Why, why, why?

I am happy she chose Roberto, and I hope they last. Katie was annoyed that she didn't pick Chris, because she doesn't think Roberto is in it for the long haul and Ali will be unhappy eating empanadas for every meal. Oh my.

And can I just say how glad I am that she didn't choose this guy?'
Look at that shirt, and he's definitely wearing lip gloss. Woof.

Monday, July 26, 2010


My senior year of high school, I read Dante's Inferno in my Literature class. One of the fun assignments we had to do during the unit was write a short essay detailing who we would put in hell and what punishment we would give them.

I can't remember who I put in hell, but I do recall my punishment: having a terribly bad sunburn all over their body, AND being in the worst stage of it, which is violently itchy and totally unbearable, AND not being able to scratch it at all. And the punishment is that they have this agonizing feeling 24/7. AND they are outdoors and the sun continues to mercilessly bear down on them as they bake alive in the heat.

Is there anything worse? I submit that there is not.

I do this to myself every summer. I think I am being really careful with the sunscreen, but then I do a crappy job or forget to reapply after getting wet. I am currently in the most painful stage of my sunburn, where scratching is the only relief and yet it makes it a thousand times worse. My chest is smoldering. My legs are seared. My shoulders are char-broiled.

I always tell myself that next time will be different. Well, this time I am serious. Next time I will wear SPF 200 on my idiot pasty skin. I will lather on three coats, just to be sure. And I will wear a sunhat and a caftan as well.
Ahhhh, sweet summer.

Friday, July 23, 2010


Russ insisted that we change the blog. Drastically. I don't know why he cares, since it's MY blog, and he doesn't have any clue what I write on it. But he does have an eye for design, and I have to admit, it looks a lot cleaner.

What do you think?

Friday, July 2, 2010

Goods & Bads Of Our Summer

Good: I like teaching. Most of my classes are enjoyable. I get to teach a wide range of people: my youngest students are 4 years old and my oldest ones are in their 60s.

A classroom full of 10 and 11 year olds = my worst nightmare. HOW does the elementary school teacher handle all their fickleness and insecurity and restlessness? I will never know.

Good: I have Sundays and Mondays off, so I can teach our Primary class, take four-hour naps, have dinner and play games with my family, and take my little sister to the pool.

Bad: Russell works two jobs, and we never have the same days off. I work all day every Saturday, which means I miss out on all kinds of fun things. And Russ has had to work a lot of Sundays, so our Primary kids ask me if he has gone apostate.

Good: I drive on the freeway every day to get to one of my teaching sites, and the car is nice, air-conditioned, reliable, and it runs as smooth as a baby's bottom (Thank you again Lees).

Bad: Katy Perry's "California Gurls" comes on the radio every ten minutes. I absolutely hate it. It's just classless debauchery. I feel ill every time I hear it come on and that perv Snoop Dogg's slimy voice murmurs, "Greetings, loved ones." EW.

Good: My family is in Disneyland this week, so Russell and I are house sitting and puppy sitting. It's fun to have a whole house to ourselves. We've been doing a lot of grilling too.

Bad: Sammy chews on our feet at 5:15 in the morning.

Good: Russell's airport job means that he can bring me home Cinnabon several times a week.

Bad: I can't think of a single bad thing about that situation.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Oh No

I am in a state of utter panic.
I start teaching tomorrow. Three classes. Tomorrow morning, I will be staring at a room full of 4-year olds and their parents. I am mortified.
I have a million things to do and it feels like I have suddenly run out of time. My nerves are shot. I've been running around like a chicken without a head. I burst into tears when I opened the fridge and discovered we were out of milk this morning. Russ was all too glad to leave me in a frenzied heap this morning and scoot off to his cool new job at the airport.
I have to go to the store and buy paper and Scotch tape and crayons. I have to print assessment and attendance forms. I have to get a map to Salt Lake Community College so I don't get lost. I have to read through the lesson plans so I don't sound like a blubbering fool tomorrow.
A blessing will probably help. And a back rub. We'll see if Russ will comply.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

June 3, 1995

Fifteen years ago today, I was baptized by my dad. It was a beautiful day and I still remember the wonderful feeling I had. These pictures are dated and hilarious, but precious to me all the same.

Monday, May 31, 2010

I Left My Contact Lens In San Francisco

Yes I did. I dropped my contact lens on the blue carpet of the hotel floor and never recovered it, so I spent two whole days squinting like One-Eyed Pete.
I was in Novato, California for four days, training for my summer teaching job. On the last day of training, my sister Katie flew in and we spent the weekend in San Francisco. The weather was unbelievable and we had the best time. We drove across the Golden Gate Bridge. We figured out BART. We walked along Pier 39 and loved the sea lions. We ate clam chowder in sourdough bread bowls. We rode the Powell Hyde cable car through the city. We went shopping in Union Square. We saw Lombard Street. We got a ride in a rickshaw. We got lost in Chinatown. We had the hotel pool and hot tub all to ourselves. We took a ferry around Alcatraz. We drank hot chocolate at Ghirardelli's. And we loved it all.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Birthday Freebies

I am a cheapskate, which means that naturally I have taken full advantage of all free things. A week before my birthday, I signed up for all sorts of birthday clubs and emails. Here's what I have gotten so far:
  • A free meal at Noodles and Company
  • A free scoop of Baskin Robbins ice cream
  • A free "Like It" bowl of ice cream at Cold Stone
  • A free gourmet burger from Red Robin
  • A free Grand Slam breakfast at Denny's
  • A free meal at Tucano's
  • A free meal at Mimi's Cafe
I sort of feel like the Artful Dodger. But whatever. I love birthdays, and free food.
I had a really fun birthday. I'll post some pictures later.