May Little Things

I did it! For the first time in what feels like forever, I posted the “little things”in the month after the happened! (There is tumultuous applause in my mind right now.)

May was such of fun month. The temperature finally started to warm up, the sun actually felt warm, and I didn’t have to wear tights or socks anymore! Finally, bare feet and ballet flats. The bad part? Realizing just how white my skin is after a loooong winter. Ugh.

We got to babysit for our friends who just finished a master’s degree in engineering and wanted to go out for a baby-free dinner. We were happy to oblige. They have the cutest, sweetest little boy. We loved every minute of it. It was really so sad to have to put him to bed. Also, this melted my heart just a little bit…


We bought a boat, named her the U.S.S. Inflation, and took her out for her maiden voyage. It was awesome.

Our Stake Relief Society (meaning all the women from about 8 congregations) hosted a wonderful Saturday meeting for us where we attended some great classes and work shops about finances (Grant was so proud of me) and the psychology of happiness (so interesting) and so much more and then had a delicious lunch together. The decorations were INSANE. Somebody somewhere is quite the balloon-sculpting and fruit-carving master.




I’m not sure why we decided we needed to bend down in these pictures. We definitely weren’t going to get ourselves to the level of that balloon octopus. The theme was something ocean-related like, “happiness cruise line.” We talked a lot about finding joy in the journey of life, where ever our journey may take us. There was the most beautiful hymn sung, and it was really really great.

This guy had a birthday


and yes, I did too. Please forgive the horrible picture of me below. That cake though was delicious (flourless chocolate torte), and those boxes had some fun stuff: a salt grinder and a block of pink Himalaya salt, a children’s hymn book, a cookbook, and some beautiful bowls that hadn’t arrived yet. Have I ever mentioned that he spoils me?


I even got a beautiful custard cake at work as a birthday gift. It was so fun to share it with everyone.


Free rhubarb at church meant that I had to make something with it. My plans to make muffins quickly turned into plans to make a pie once Grant made it very clear he preferred pie over muffins. I think in the end the pie was definitely the more delicious option, and I got to try my hand at making a homemade pie! It turned out better than I expected.



We drove to North Dakota and saw all of my family, and I failed to take any pictures of anyone. Really? I am SO disappointed in myself. I did however, take a picture of the mosquito massacre that took place on the front of our car. Gross.



May also brought with it the most beautiful skies and sunsets. Although the winter had its own beauty, the clouds and colors that come with the warmth of may are so so beautiful, and I am so so grateful for the front row seat that we have to this incredible display.



And May ended in the most lovely way. With a Tea Party! I think I’ll write more on that very soon, so i’ll just leave one picture as a preview. Aren’t my friends beautiful?


We bought a boat!


Meet the U.S.S. Inflation.

Before you say anything, an inflatable boat is still a boat.

We think this might be one of the best ideas we’ve ever had. It wasn’t completely our idea though. We must give credit to Rich and Bobbie for inspiring us back when it was still far too cold to even consider the possibility of the lakes not being completely frozen.

Once the weather started warm up though, and Grant started thinking about  fishing again, we decided it was time to make our move. In exchange for a small fortune, hooked us up with fly fishing supplies and…our new boat.

I was a little concerned when we first picked it up. The box was huge and heavy. Grant didn’t seem too concerned though, so I decided to feel ok about it. I’d say we both felt pretty great about it at that point.




As we prepared for our maiden voyage, I once again became somewhat  concerned. As far as I could tell, this thing was HUGE, and we were going to have to inflate it and then deflate it and pack it up every time we wanted to take it out.


If Grant would have voiced the same concerns and decided that we needed to go buy that Toyota Tacoma he is always talking about, i’m pretty sure I would have agreed, and we would have a truck right now. But thankfully he didn’t. Instead, he couldn’t have been happier figuring out how to get it all inflated and ready to go. Once it started to look like a boat, I could tell that the people walking by at Lake of the Isles thought our boat was pretty awesome. In fact, we heard a woman on her bike say just that to her companion. Surprisingly, it didn’t actually take all that long to inflate, and we were ready to go.


Oh man, we were pumped. (and yes, so was the boat #grantjokes) The maiden voyage did not disappoint.


It was pretty perfect, even though it was a little windy. After all, it was Saturday, and we were on a boat! 5 minutes from our apartment!


Look at that face. The blissful look of a new boat owner.

And of course, what would a boat ride be without a little fishing?


Fantastic idea? Absolutely.


April Little Things

I tried my first one-pot dinner. Just throw all the ingredients into the pot at one time, put the lid on, and 10 minutes later…done. So easy. It was good, but I think I’m still on the look out for a better one-pot option. Or maybe I should put in less water next time?


We finally made it to Chick-fil-A, so I could try the frozen lemonade we kept seeing in commercials while we were in North Carolina. It did not disappoint. Just thinking about it has my mouth watering. If were weren’t such old-timers who go to bed at 8:30, I would be tempted to go get one right now.


It turned out to be quite a fun date night. (Even though it ended with Grant getting a new calling…) What is it about those waffle fries?

And of course, what would April be without General Conference? The first weekends of April and October, we have the opportunity to hear from our church leaders on different Gospel-related topics. It is seriously a feast of goodness. All weekend long (4 hours on Saturday and 4 hours on Sunday) we get to hear different “talks” from different individuals. You can go here to listen to any of the talks. This one was one of my favorites. (But they’re all SO good!) It is better than any self-help book you could ever read. I always look forward to it so much, and I get so disappointed when the Sunday session is nearing the end. Fortunately, we can go back and read and listen to those talks whenever we want. Different ones always resonate at different times.


General Conference weekend also happened to fall on Easter weekend this year, and it was a beautiful day! Between General Conference sessions on Saturday, we headed to the driving range to hit some golf balls.


For our Easter Dinner on Sunday we had pot roast, potatoes, and vegetables. We had this last year as well. It may become our Easter tradition. After dinner we went down the block to check out the Basilica of St. Mary. They have the most beautiful Christmas and Easter decorations, and this year was no exception.


We had a few typical Boren-style friday nights: Grant reading something academic and thought-provoking, me reading and marking my cookbooks. (Yes, it is totally possible to read a cookbook. In fact, the ones that have stories and explanations and little memories to go with the recipes are my favorite)


When the weather starts to warm up in Minneapolis, it means it’s time for food trucks! I think the food trucks are so great. Some of them have such fun, unique menus. They add a little pizzaz to the normal lunch time routine, and they give you a good excuse to spend a little extra time outside during the work day. My wonderful friend Ali came downtown to meet me for a food truck lunch one fine day.


And finally…Grant re-claimed an old hobby that he is pretty excited about and he seems to be loving-Fly fishing! He is even making is own flys (or is it flies?) He has been getting up super-early every Saturday morning and heading out to fish for a couple of hours. We have more than a few lakes within 15 minutes, so it’s a great hobby. He always seems to get back before I actually get out of bed…


Now on to May!