Sunday, July 31, 2011

The Proposal Story

Guess what?!?!?! I'M ENGAGED!!!!!!! To Brigham Matthew Barzee..... that's right--my name is gonna be Rachel Barzee. Brigham and I met our freshman year in our single's ward, where we dated for 3 months. He then left on his mission to Korea, and when he got back this past December, we started dating again in January..... and now were getting married!!!

Im sure whoever is reading this blog post would like to know how he proposed, so here is the story:

We were in Newport Beach on vacation with my family when after five days of being there Brigham asks me to go to dinner 'just us'....... of course i get a little suspicious despite his constant efforts to reassure me he didn't have the ring, therefore he couldn't propose... Well we go to dinner at Andrea, the best restaurant in all of Newport, where we giggled eating expensive Italian cuisine. The restaurant is, of course, on a hillside overlooking the ocean and after we ate dessert we watched the sun set over the dark blue water--super romantic right?

Then we parked and walked down to the beach where we set out a couple towels and laid down on the sand to look at the stars. Brigham gets out his camera to take some pictures (by this time it was really dark so sorry you cant see too much) while conveniently setting up the camera to record the whole scene without me noticing.

As we were looking at the stars he turns on Pandora, which just happened to play" Say, All We Need"by OneRepublic-- a song we always listened to together freshman year. It was perfect. Then, using Brigham exact words, " I remember us laying there and talking about getting married. And I asked her if she wanted to get engaged tonight and she smiled and said yes, and i smiled and said "me too"... then Brig said this calls for some dancing, whipping out his playlist he prepared of songs we listened to while dating.... first up was Dancin in the Moonlight by Toploader.... So there we were two people in love fast dancing to this song as the waves crashed over our feet. In the moonlight:)

The song ends and just before the next one comes on he says "Rachel, you mean everything to me".... and right after Michael Bublé chime in "you're a falling star, you're the getaway car, you're the line in the sand when I go to far." Again, it was perfection because he would always sing this song to me when we first started dating almost three years ago. Well after that we slow danced to some more songs, and then he says "You want to know what I really want right now" and of course Im like yes, expecting him to say "you".... nope the little trickster said "I really wish I had your engagement ring right now.......... but this will have to do" and he pulls out a temporary ring with my centerstone in it. (The setting is on its way and should be here in less than a week). He then got on one knee, gave a speech that I'm not allowed to repeat, but basically says how much he loves me, and proposes! We both were emotional (even though Brigham refuses to acknowledge his tears) as we hugged each other. We ran and played in the waves for a couple more minutes (maybe kissing along the way) and then went back to tell my family the news.

Im so happy to have met the love of my life and im so excited to marry my best friend:)

The night we got engaged

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

The Boy Who Lived

This past Thursday was my birthday, and it was a great birthday indeed. My WONDERFUL family came all the way from Colorado to surprise me!!! And boy did they get me good. Of course Brigham was in on the whole thing and made it all run very smoothly.... telling me not to plan anything because he claimed the whole day for himself, and making sure we were at my apartment when my mom and two sisters rang the doorbell. I wont bore you with all the details but we had some wonderful time together hanging out, shopping, eating (which is a big deal in my family), searching for misplaced objects, and seeing HARRY POTTER!

That Thursday night Brig, Becca and I got all dressed up (in my new hp glasses and cloak from the fam:)) to go see the midnight showing.... The lesser Harry Potter fans went the next night, bringing Becca and I for a second viewing (which i was happy with beeause it was that good)... anyways here are some of our sweet costumes.

                                                                    Harry and Ginny

I cant even explain how much I love these books. I try and read them every summer, and each and every time I discover new secrets, meanings and information about the world that JK Rowling created. In October JK Rowling is releasing never seen before information about the HP series on her Pottermore website....... i cant wait!!

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Father of Mine

I have the BEST father in the world:) Words cannot describe all of the wonderful things he has done for me, the wonderful life that he has made possible for me to live. In one of my classes we learned that a father's divine nature is to protect, provide, and preside over his family--my dad shows all of these qualities to perfection.... here are only a few examples


Some of my dad's favorite stories are about how he has scared off some of my dates.... including the time he answered the door saying "What the hell do you want??" or the time where he polished his shot gun lecturing my date to behave himself.....

but he does so much more than scaring off my dates..... he has protected me from making wrong dicisions by advising me using his knowledge and wisdom. He has protected me by teaching me the way to be my best self, to be not only a good person, but someone who aspires to their full potential. He has taught me to strongly dislike country music :)

      I cannot think of anyone else who works as hard as my dad..... and why does he work so hard? as he would say, "nothing is more important than family". He has protected me by showing me the most fulfilling way to live and value life--by making sure I work hard so I too can have the joy of having a wonderful family of my own someday.


Like I said above, my dad is a VERY hard worker. He values education to the utmost, and again the reason is not solely to obtain knowledge, but to be able to provide for a family. One of the things i love most about my father is that he not only provides for my family, but for those he loves in his community. If he see's someone struggling, he is always willing to help in anyway he can. He provides for those around him. I am proud to say he is a democrat willing to be taxed above others because he believes in the programs that promise to help those in need.


My father's testimony of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has helped guide me along my way throughout my entire life. It has not only strengthened my own testimony, but it helped bring me so much joy. His example has not only kept me in line, but so many others. My dad has worked with the young men for quite some time--and there is a good reason why they keep him there. I have witnessed how his example and his ability to relate to them has only stengthened their own testimonies as well.

My dad is so full of charity. He has so many qualities of the Christ-like love that I can only aspire to obtain. I am so GRATEFUL for the wonderful blessing he has been in my life. For the protection, provision and Patriarch that he is.  I am so lucky to be able to say he is my father. I love him with all my heart :)

Happy Father's Day DADDY:) I love you so much. 

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Things to be grateful for.....

Sunny Days
Great Friends:)
Callings (I get to pick the hymns in church and I absolutely LOVE it)
the Temple
The Human Body
classes that I actually enjoy studying for
Brigham Matthew Barzee
Warm summer nights
Yummy food
my community
people who share their talents for all to enjoy
a comfy place to sleep
good health
the Gospel
anyone who is reading this blog

Im so lucky for all the wonderful people that I have in my life. Ive realized that i should show more appriciation to those that make my life so great.... SO THANK YOU!! Im so blessed with my wonderful family, friends, and especially the gospel :)

*as per request....
DADDY.... "the most important man in my life:)"

Saturday, June 4, 2011

The Cabin

This is the Crandall Cabin...... aka one of my favorite places on earth. Some of my fondest memories of growing up were in this old, rickety, 70's style home. Whether it was playing cops and robbers with my cousins or fishing at connie's pond, I knew that at the cabin we would always be having fun.

Luckily for me, i got to go there this past weekend!!! Brigham, my bf and bff, had never been to Yellowstone which is only a 45 minute drive from Teton Valley (where the cabin is) so off we went to show off the beautiful nature around us. It was a beautiful day despite all the snow that was still on the ground as we packed all 6 of us in a 5 person car (this becomes important later).... As we drove from site to site, Brigham and I in the trunk, we captured some pretty sweet pictures of the nature and wildlife around us.... Here are just a few.
View of the Teton's
Brig and I by the steaming pools

Coyote... def not the Crandall's favorite animal
Bison on the side of the road
yes that is a grizzly with her two cubs. Awesome, I know;)
The girls:)

So as were driving back from the park, my dad (being the wonderful, but aggresive driver that he is) was accidently going over the speed limit... and of course he gets pulled over. Remember that we had six people with only 5 seatbelts? ya bad news bears.. (Shannon I hope your reading this). So in the meantime while the cop is turning around I leapt over the back seat from the trunk and in a matter of seconds Im buckled up like nothing was ever wrong. We debated if we should try and cover Brigham up with all of our jackets, but deciding that doing so would only be worse, he just pretended to be sleeping in the trunk. Of course the cop got a gooood look at him while he came up to our window. Later he commented, "well he's clearly passed out" like its completely legal to have someone sleeping in the trunk. Luckily we got off with a warning, even though my dad was going over 15 more than the speed limit. Turns out these two were the best cops ever. 

Later that weekend we had some fun paint balling out in the woods of our cabin... Whit and I took on the boys, but sadly we lost--as you can see Brigham had the best record of hitting his targets. We were fortunate to use the 80's snowmobiling suits at the cabin for padding. 

Overall it was a wonderful trip.... Like always we cozied up to the crackling fire while eating Maddox and played some games. The cool mountain air with the scent of pine trees in the air was the perfect vacation for the 3 day weekend.  I cant wait to go up again for the 4th :)