Thursday, March 19, 2009


Austin and I had our first big fight in a while today. It wasn't even that big, and it was over something stupid of course. But I had to go to my two hour Anatomy lab in the middle of our "discussion", and I felt pretty horrible the whole time I had to be there. I was dreading coming home to continue with said argument, and was wishing that we could just drop the whole thing. As I pulled up I was preparing my apology in my head, hoping we could resolve things quickly. So I was more than pleasantly surprised when I walked in the door to candles and roses and a homemade dinner, and a husband scooping me up in a hug and saying sorry first.

Of course we ate this amazing dinner sitting on the floor at our coffee table because we don't have a dining room table. Or a dining room to put one in for that matter. And our little kitchen was filled with pots, pans, and bowls from the cuisine creations of Austin. And we don't have a dishwasher, and just one tiny drying rack to put the dishes in. But I felt more than spoiled, and richer than ever. We spent the rest of the evening listening to Frank Sinatra while I finished the dishes and Austin fixed our $30 dryer that stopped working today.

It was so very 1950's newlyweds.

And it was so very wonderful.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

7) These cute puppies!

Austin and I have always agreed on the fact that we will have a German Shepherd and a chocolate Lab. I absolutely love both of these dogs, they are adorable when they're puppies, and beautiful when they're full grown. We'll train them well, and they'll be outside dogs for sure. And they'll both beat down anyone who tries to come on our land.

Isn't this German Shepherd puppy seriously the cutest thing ever?!

Monday, March 9, 2009

6) Our own personal mailbox

One thing we will definitely have is a personal mailbox. I absolutely can't stand the metal boxes with the keys that we refer to as mailboxes these days. I HATE those things. I want to have our own little adorable mailbox right at the end of our driveway. With the little red flag that you put up when you're mailing a letter. And with beautiful flowers growing up at the base of it. Something similar to this darling thing...

Who wouldn't want to get mail in this??

Sunday, March 8, 2009


My mom introduced me to NieNie's blog just a couple of weeks ago, and since then I am absolutely obsessed. I read it constantly, over and over. She has years of archives to keep me busy, but her recent ones are incredible as well. I undoubtedly end up crying every time I read, which is kind of embarrassing when I'm reading them at work. But this one I read today broke me down into a puddle of tears. I hope she won't mind me copying a part of it here, but she is honestly my new inspiration. She is the most amazing wife, mother, and person I've ever heard of, and she will change your life with how simple and fantastic her life is. This post is about when she gave birth to her last baby naturally, at home. I love her. I hope I can be half as incredible as she is when I do this the same way.

"Since my birth experience to Mr. Nicholas Jones Nielson was a rather spiritual and personal experience, I thought I'd share only a few highlights in minor detail.

Having Christian at my side was so soothing. He was there when this beautiful child was created, so of course he was going to be there every second seeing this baby here into this world. That included: holding me when contractions started, timing, rubbing, kissing, wiping tears and-OH those eyes! Those beautiful brown eyes of his! They were my guiding light as I pushed out this nearly 9 pounder. He was not just on the side lines watching from a distance, rather close at my every whim touching, encouraging and affirming.

A birth is a spiritual occurrence if we let it. It is how we treat the experience that makes it so beautiful. I lay in my room with the most comforting, calming, gorgeous music playing. It was quite. It was peaceful, and very safe. Occasionally I would wander outside to smell the air and feel the wind on my body. It was invigorating.

Christian fed me fresh cantaloupe and berries and kept me hydrated with pure distilled water (and recharge a healthy version of gatorade- my favorite) People think that I am crazy for having a baby without any medications or that I even consider the idea of having it in my home (on the bed in which the child was made-CRAZY). I hear lots of:

"ohhh you are brave" but deep in my heart, I know it is our divine make-up that gives us all that opportunity. It is not just for the brave, but for every woman searching for confidence she didn't even know she possessed.

Sure it hurts, of course it hurts. Of course I wanted to quit and give-up, but that's when the angels enter in and somehow the pain and suffering is all worth it. In fact as I sit here and type this, I don't remember the pain--funny, since I seriously thought I was going to die during it all.

When Nicholas came out my midwife placed him on my chest and Christian and I were quite emotional. It had been a long, intense 14 hour journey. He lay peacefully there and blinked his charming eyes at us and then fell asleep.

We examined his chubby fingers, large head, broad shoulders, and mini toes. I lay there with an outsized grin soaking up all those "I'm a queen, look at what I just did" feelings. Then I got into a hot shower.

It was in one word, perfect in everyway. I am perfectly blessed to have such a wonderful body in which I can create, carry, and deliver in perfect health these darling little children into this world."

5) Pumpkin Patch

Back to the previously scheduled blogs about the things I want when I grow up!

Anyone who knows anything about me knows that I count down the days every year. Not until Christmas, not until my Birthday, not until school is out. But until HALLOWEEN. It is by far the greatest occasion anyone has come up with so far. So dream #5 is most definitely a pumpkin patch. But not just a pumpkin patch, I want an annual neighborhood Halloween party to go along with it. We would have cookie decorating, pumpkin carving, a costume contest, caramel apples, scary stories, and maybe even a hayride. And maybe a bonfire with s'mores. And we'll put together adorable little party favors for everyone to take home. And everyone will look forward to the Keaton Halloween Bash every year!! Maybe it's a little much. But this is all about my dreams, so I can make them as ridiculous as I want. Here's the preliminary to our future pumpkin patch. We planted these last year in our tiny little garden, and they are just a preview of things to come!

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Quarter of a Century

Today my adorable husband is turning 25. This will be the fourth birthday that I get to celebrate with him. So darling, as a classic birthday blog, here are 25 things that I love about you, one for every wonderful year you have been alive!

1) When we were dating you would leave me the cutest notes on my car at work or at my apartment. It was the best surprise, because I would always think they were a parking ticket at first!

2) I frequently come home from work to a spotless kitchen with all the dishes done.

3) You built me a shelf above the sink for our microwave. An estimated hour project that turned into an all night ordeal, but you finished. And I love it.

4) I have been out of wiper fluid for weeks, and you snuck out there the other night and filled it up for me.

5) You never let me pump my own gas.

6) We both love Home Improvement, and could watch it for hours.

7) We both also love Seinfeld and could watch it for DAYS.

8) One particularly horrible/long day at work, you left me my favorite Sonic drink in my car so I could have it on the way home.

9) You always take the garbage out.

10) When I go to bed you tuck me in, because you're the only one who can make the blankets exactly how I like them. I can't sleep right if you don't do it for me.

11) We both want to live on a cute farm.

12) You eat what I make for dinner no matter what, and always rave about how amazing it is. Even if you admit later that it wasn't the greatest.

13) Whenever something needs to be fixed in the house, you know how to do it. You even snaked the drain the other week.

14) We always want to see the same movies.

15) You work full time and go to school, and you never complain about it or even act stressed.

16) You thought of the cutest name for our daughter.

17) When I'm grumpy and say mean things you never get mad.

18) You always support what I want to do, even if it's crazy.

19) You are infinitely patient with me.

20) We get to go to the temple together.

21) You went on a mission, and you still talk about how much you loved it.

22) You come from a wonderful family, and I am so lucky to be a part of it. Your parents are the greatest in-laws I could ever hope for.

23) You are a worthy Priesthood holder, and it makes our home a wonderful place to live.

24) You wrote me letters on your mission, and it always made my day when I saw them in my mailbox.

25) I can't wait to grow old together, and sit on the porch swing of our big farmhouse, and watch fireflies-which I can't wait to see for the first time with you.

Happy Birthday, Austin! I'm so glad you were born! =)

Friday, March 6, 2009


Last night in lab I got to see/touch/hold/study/appreciate a real human brain.

It was awesome.

4) Fresh Baked Bread

My mom used to tell us about how her mom would bake homemade bread every Saturday night so they would have it for the week. The entire house would smell delicious as they went to bed. And every once in a while if she snuck downstairs, her mom would give her the heel of a loaf as a treat. I think it would be so wonderful to be able to get into a routine of doing that every week. There's nothing more delicious than toast made with homemade bread and fresh jam. The problem I always have with homemade bread is that it can end up tasting too much like yeast, and seem kind of bland. But last night I cracked open one of the thirty cookbooks we were given for the wedding, and found what turned out to be the most delicious homemade bread recipe I've had. It's a basic recipe for white bread that can be used for anything, and you can substitute whole wheat flour in it as well. They had all these different design ideas and toppings and glazes. I made these adorable spiral rolls, some with sesame seeds on top. They were delicious! I think I'll work on perfecting this recipe in my little kitchen over the next few months.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

3) Homemade Baby Food

I know this one sounds like a crazy hippie lady thing. But I am crazy about the idea of not having to buy jars upon jars of baby food, which is getting rather expensive, and having to worry about what might be in it. I could just pick some fresh fruits/veggies from my wonderful garden (documented in the previous post) and make it fresh in exactly the right amount. This baby food maker is my favorite, it's from France and they sell it at Williams-Sonoma, so it must be incredible. It steams, blends, and warms the food all in that same bowl, and it has no BPA. We'll have the healthiest little organic babies!

I would of course also need this precious little baby cookbook.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

2) Gardens

My dream of living on a totally self-sufficient little plot of land would definitely start with incredible gardens. I would want equally huge fruit and vegetable gardens, along with loads of fruit trees. I want to grow everything: corn, tomatoes, peas, lettuce, cucumbers, squash, broccoli, beans, peppers, herbs, blackberries, raspberries, strawberries, pears, apples, cherries. And of course we would have one giant pumpkin patch, an entirely separate dream of mine that will be addressed later on.
This book is one of my greatest inspirations for wanting to grow as much of our own food as we can.

Barbara Kingsolver, who wrote The Poisonwood Bible which is also amazing, wrote this as a sociological/investigative journalism piece. Her and her family move from Arizona to the East coast in order to become completely self-sufficient. They only eat what they can grow themselves, or what they can buy from local farmers. It completely changes their family in every way possible, and brings them back to what's most important. They are healthier, happier, and stronger as a family. Who knew that kind of a miracle could happen just by changing what you eat? And who wouldn't want to grow a delicious garden to make that happen?

1) A Pottery Barn House

One habit I have is going through every Pottery Barn magazine that I get (which is a lot because we registered there) and tearing out the pages of things I love. Rooms, curtains, furniture, lighting, etc. I have a huge file with ideas for my house, which I plan to be shabby chic with a little bit of southern country mixed in. This is one of my absolute favorite ideas.

I picture this next to our mud room, where our kids have their own little spot to keep permission slips and homework and to post their little achievements in school.

This is another of my favorites. I would love to have a dining room this cozy and inviting. I can just imagine sitting around with our cute family on a Saturday morning in our pajamas eating breakfast at this table.

And this is my dream bedroom. I think this is the most incredible color combination. It's like Fall, my favorite season, but so bright and cheery that I would love it year round. I'm in love with the orange accents.


It seems like lately all I can seem to think about is the future. We're getting restless here in Utah. It's not because we're unhappy, it's just that I think we're ready to move on. It seems that we're both coming to the end of what we can get out of being here. I realized today that I have lived in Utah for almost 5 years. Five years! That's almost 25% of my entire life. Living here makes me feel like I'm still in college, like I'm still 17 and playing around and not living in the real world. So I'm excited to move somewhere that we can actually put down roots and build a life. A permanent life, not a temporary student life.

So I thought I would share with you some of the things I plan to do/have when I'm all grown up, and we have a real house all to ourselves. And because I need more ideas for blogs, I'll be doing this as a little series. Starting with....Pottery Barn.