December 16, 2010

So Sweet!

No, not cute little cuddly baby items, but sweet, savory, delicious pork!!! I love love love being home. And to be quite honest, besides a few close friends, there isn't much I miss about being in Utah. BUT-- one thing I have to admit I do miss is good ole' Cafe Rio (Costa Vida makes a pretty good runner up). I guess pregnancy is known to bring on ridiculous cravings, hence my costco pickle jar. But lately, John and I have both been craving sweet pork salads/burritos. Chipotle is definitely a family favorite here, but its just not the same!

Tuesday night we were having the missionaries over for dinner. What a perfect excuse to cook up a little goodness! So thanks to our friends Erin and James who have perfected the recipe, we made the sweet pork, cilantro-lime rice, and cilantro-lime ranch dressing. Serve up over lettuce =SOOOO GOOOOOD. The elders loved it and John says he could eat it everyday. Too bad we ate all the left overs for lunch on Wednesday. I'm craving it again already!! Thanks E & J!!

December 14, 2010

It's a.....

Finally, she revealed herself!!! Daddy Harding was in shock for a few minutes. He was convinced we were having a little baby boy. But the next day he was as excited as ever, reading articles about raising girls and even making up a list of names he liked. Ever since we found out, we have been trying to imagine what she'll look like or guess what hobbies she'll enjoy. Here's our sweet little girl. She won't be here until April, not soon enough!

December 10, 2010

Come out and play little baby!!!

This was suppose to be posted YESTERDAY.....

Well, Baby decided to be shy at the last ultra-sound, even after juice, jogging, AND jumping jacks. Try #2 is today so baby better come out and play, or at least spread 'em!

We were hoping to know what we were having before the most important day of the year, Black Friday! Unfortunately, baby did not cooperate so we were forced to cut out the pink and lace or blue and dinosaurs from our radar and gaze only at the bland gender neutral clothing...blah. Needless to say, Baby Harding did not take advantage of those bargain finds at midnight madness.

However, we have found a few great finds from the neighborhood craig's list! I just love feeling like a high roller with the best brands out there, paying only a portion of the cost. I was most excited about finding this amazing Bugaboo cameleon. They have like 10 different positions. We got it in orange, fun gender neutral and not to mention UVA colors!

Another great find- this Little Castle Glider in black toile. Love it right??

We'll keep you posted on the status of baby... and any extremities we may or may not see!

November 18, 2010

Boy or Girl????

We find out tomorrow!!! (If baby decides to cooperate...)

November 15, 2010

Samson sings

Samson is our super puppy. We love him despite his smell, mess, or electronic diet as a pup. Not only can he stay, sit, fetch, and shake, but he has a very special talent. When Samson was just a little guy and we were living with my parents for the summer, my dad taught Samson how to sing with him. It was so cute to see those funny noises coming out of such a little pup. A year later when we moved back to Maryland, Samson had forgotten how to sing with Pops. So my dad worked hard and got the big guy to remember. Maybe its just us, but we think this is just stinkin hilarious!

And now I present....Samson's song!

November 14, 2010

Just Practicing

Yesterday we got to hang out with our niece Emma while Dave and Glo took a much needed day long vacation in New York! Emma is adorable. She is nine months now and some of her favorite things to do are laugh, wave, and clap! We just love her, and we think she might like us too, especially her Uncle John and cousin Samson. We can't wait to have a little cousin for our Emma to play with. Here are a few shots just relaxing.

November 3, 2010

Life rolls on!

I tried to add a cute Thanksgiving background but my lack of tech savviness put a damper on things. My intentions were to load this cute November themed turkey background so that I would be forced to blog by at least Christmas! So if anyone out there can help me, I would be all for it.

Anyway, welcome back to the world of the Hardings. Life has been just lovely lately. A few highlights from the past few months:

August 1-
John starts new job at law firm. (Hooray for real pay checks!!)

August 16-
John and I celebrated our 2 year anniversary. Time flies when you're having fun!

August 21-
I turned 23! John bought me a new camera so I would become a better blogger...ha. We celebrated at Deep Creek Lake with our friends Rachel and Brant Cox.

August 26-
Daniel returns home from his 2 year mission in Arizona! Lots of tears, of joy of course!

End of August/Early September-
I begin my new job as a 4th grade math teacher! Loving every minute.

September 3-
We move into our new house/ start our house sitting job.

September through October-
Lots and lots of puking. Oh, did I forget to mention we are expecting??? We find out the gender in 3 weeks. John is already convinced its a little boy.

Our little bundle of joy is set to arrive early April.

October 23-
My bestie Sarah Fletcher and I throw a baby shower for our good friend Ashley. It was beautiful (thanks to Fletch the next Martha Stewart!) Here was my one contribution...thanks Dawn, couldn't have done it without you!

Late October-
John's first year haunting the forest! MHF 2010.

October 31-
Happy Halloween! Samson is always the star at our house.

That's the gist of it. Hang on tight for more updates! And maybe even a belly picture or two, if I am feeling adventurous that is...

August 18, 2010

The First Post From John

Wow, It seems Rachael and I (this is John typing) are becoming progressively worse at blogging. I think ever since Rachael lost her camera to Samson's wrath that the desire to blog has dwindled because, lets face it, nobody actually reads the content of a blog; they are just here for the pictures. So for the few and proud that are willing to put up with a couple of paragraphs of the written word, I give you the quarterly update.

I'll go ahead and get the most important family member out of the way first—Samson. This summer we have been living with my parents while we wait for our house sitting job to begin in September. This has given Samson ample time to become very attached to his best friend Bryant (I'll post pictures when we have our new camera up and running). They are pretty much inseparable and they trade off between wrestling in my mom's garden (where they destroy all of her vegetables and get very dirty) and napping in the living room. He is in doggy heaven and it only got better when my parents bought a new puppy, Riley . She is a bundle of energy and will practically attack Samson all day. She can often be found hanging from Samson's neck while Samson and Bryant wrestle. He is very good with her and tolerates the constant biting.

If you had asked me six months ago if I would ever miss Samson sleeping in my bed I would have said no. When Samson sleeps in bed with you he practically takes over the entire bed and you some how get pushed into the corner. Samson is also notorious for his early wake ups (and when he is awake everyone is awake). So I am actually a little surprised that Rachael and I have been missing him at night. Throughout the summer Samson has been spending progressively more time sleeping in my mom's room(where his best friend Bryant sleeps).It has gotten so bad that we practically have to drag him upstairs if we want him to sleep with us. Usually Rachael and I are too tired to fight with him all the way upstairs and my mom gets stuck with three dogs in the bed. I have no idea how she tolerates it.

Rachael has been working as a nanny, dog sitter, house sitter and any other odd job she could find this summer. This has made for some very long days when we have overbooked ourselves, but overall a fun summer. One of the craziest weekends was when we babysat for a family with three boys and a baby girl for four days. Of course this brought out my inner child and it was more like babysitting for four boys and a baby girl. We sword fought, wrestled and generally had a great time. By the end of the four days Rachael had decided that, when we finally got around to having a kid, it would have to be a girl …. And I had determined the exact opposite.

Rachael also just came back from a little trip out to Utah for our friend Matt's wedding. I wasn't able to go because of some work obligations, but Cathey and Rachael went and had a great time. Rach will have to give you the full trip report at a later time. I'll also let her give the report on her hiring process with the school system because I wont be able to do it justice.

Our decision to go to UVA left me with a whole extra year to gain experience and prepare for law school. I loved my summer job at Calleva, where I would basically play in the river all day and have a great time on an island in the Potomac, but the reality of the world eventually had to hit. We decided that it was time to trade in my swimsuit and PFD for a suit and tie and I headed to a law firm on K street. I work as an assistant for a group of environmental lawyers and am looking forward to a year of mentoring. Right now I am mostly doing clerical work, but I think I will eventually be given some other tasks. Either way, it is a great opportunity for me to see the inside of a law firm and determine if this is really what I want to do with the rest of my life.

Well that’s the update. We finally got a new camera and are planning on taking tons of picture to update the blog. We have some fun events coming up (like Rachael's birthday and a weekend at deep creek). Hopefully the new camera will spark our desire to blog.

June 8, 2010


The year has come and gone quickly and we have had some rather large accomplishments! I survived my first year teaching, John graduated from BYU undergrad, and Samson is still alive!! (That last one is probably the biggest surprise taking into account his puppy diet of electronics and corn cobs.) SO now for the changes!

We have made our final cross country journey from Utah to Maryland. This time we left nothing in storage. We sold many of our belongings (like my favorite couch!) because we had planned on attending NYU and we knew you can't get much of an apartment for what we could afford. We packed up whatever was left and John drove all 37 hours with this puppy attached to his hip/the back of our car!

Ask me how many hours I drove...the answer is zero. I have the best hubby! Oh and just while we are on the subject... look what he made for my drama club play. The kids LOVED it! (Special thanks to Michael for his artistic skills for the shield!)

So we are officially done with Utah!! HOORAY! Bring on the East Coast! We are living with the Harding's this summer in Bethesda, Maryland. John's going to be working at Calleva, an outdoor summer adventure camp, with his brothers Dave and Michael. This is a dream job compared to the last 2 summers of internships, commuting, and suits. He gets to play all day on the island, in the water, and on the ropes course. Pretty much be a big kid. I will probably be doing some babysitting or whatever else that can make me a little mula. Samson was so happy to be reunited with his best pal Bryant. They play outside all day and bring in double the dirty paw prints inside!

We have only been home for a week but have loved every second we have gotten to spend with our family! Just this week we've been to crawfish boils, lots of family dinners, game night, shopping trips, and even kidnapped Shayne from school all day on his birthday!

It's so nice to be close to home, probably what I missed the most in my five years of Utah. That's why it was so important for us to pick a law school close to home. Many of people knew we had decided on NYU, but looks like the tides have turned. Live is full of surprises and it certainly threw one at us last week. UVA called (John's dreamschool) and offered John acceptance if he would defer for one year. That means instead of going to school right away, he would have to wait for the 2011-2012 school year to begin. It was a difficult decision for us to make, especially since NYU is a very prestigious and highly ranked school. In the end after lots of prayer and discussion we decided that UVA, the University of Virginia, was just a better fit for us. So its not exactly New York City, but it will be a different kind of adventure for us! Now we are just trying to figure out what we will be doing in our year "off." Will we live on the Virginia or Maryland side of the river? John would like to get a job with a law firm, maybe as a paralegal for a little more experience with the law. Hopefully I can get a great teaching job! Whatever happens, we know the Lord is guiding us and we are truely blessed! Bring on the changes!

April 12, 2010

Here we go again...

As you might have noticed, blogging does not exactly rank very high on our priority list right now. Life has been busy, but very pleasant. Here are the ongoings in a nut shell.

*For the past 8 months Rachael has loved teaching her 3rd graders. Every day is a new adventure. Her students are so bright and love her almost as much as she loves them. With all the horror stories of the stress and pain of the first year teaching she thinks she's had it pretty easy! (There are only a few darling scholars that drive her whacko) She can't believe the school year will be over in only 34 more school days...but who's counting?? She is sad to leave her school because it has been such a great fit for her, but she is excited for the opportunity to support children that need her somewhere else in the country!

Here are a few of our latest class projects: moon phases with oreos and paper mache planets

*John took the LSAT and passed with flying colors. He would never toot his own horn, but luckily his wife does that for him and has let everyone know that John's score ranked within the top 99% of all test takers in the nation. Needless to say, he has been offered acceptance at many great institutions. This past week we were able to travel back East to visit some of the campuses. We had narrowed it down to Georgetown and New York University. We thought that our visit would most likely lead us to Georgetown mostly because of how close it was to family. We loved being able to spend time with all the Hardings (especially our beautiful new niece Emma!!) and the Carvers. A few highlights of the trip were when Rachael got pedicures with the girls, John went kayaking with Dave, both attended Shayne's baseball scrimmage and Becca's play practice, lunch with Kevin, dinner with Fletch and Scotty, easter with Grandma Lauris and the rest of the fam, outlets with the Carvers, and the best was the practical joke Rachael played on Shayne!!

We love Emma!

It was a great trip home and we thought that would definitely sway our decision in Georgetown's favor. But when we visited the campus we didn't feel the magic. We were a little disappointed in our reaction and worried that we may get the same reaction when visiting NYU. But this was not the case! Later that week we took the megabus to the Big Apple and attended NYU's accepted students weekend. We loved the feel of the school. The facilities were amazing. Who would have thought of sticking a school in the middle of a crazy city? We attended class and the professors seemed to know each of their students by name. The other students were so friendly and willing to offer their positive experiences with the school. We spoke with other LDS students who also shared their life as law students and spouses in the big city. We left with a positive affirmation that this was the right place for us. So NYU it is... for now. John is still holding out for UVA because that is his number one choice. He was waitlisted there and hopes to hear from them soon. But if not...start spreading the news, we are leaving for New York!!

*Samson is...Samson. Lately he's developed quite the taste for electronics. We lost a few cords, a cell phone, and a camera to his bad habit. We are hoping he quits. Fast. John's being working quite a bit with him and he's gotten pretty good at heeling. Still not there yet, but on his way. He's got to learn quick if he's going to be a big city dog!

Anyway that's the gist of it. Love you lots! More updates to come, but don't expect them for at least another 5 months :)