The world is your oyster!: June 2012        

These are a few of my favorite things:

pina-colada flavored italian ice
dance parties
dressing up
love :)


My name is Heather.

I am 22 years old.

I am an East Coast girl
who also loves Utah.

I love my life. How could I not?

The world is my oyster :)
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Saturday, June 30, 2012

How I Met Shaq

Some people, like Aaron Carter, meet Shaquille O'Neal on the court.

Other people might see him driving around on the road.

And then there are other people who just happen to see him at an Auntie Anne's pretzel stand in the Salt Lake City airport when they are getting ready to fly out to spend a few weeks on the East Coast.

One day, I was at the SLC airport, getting ready to do just that. I had had a bowl of cereal for breakfast, but I was worried that if I got hungry on the plane, I would accidentally eat the crepe that I got for my dad at the Awful Waffle that morning, and I didn't want that to happen. Besides, I had plenty of time before my flight took off, so I got in line at an Auntie Anne's stand on the way to my terminal.

"Can I get the original pretzel nuggets?" I asked.
"We're actually out of pretzel nuggets," the girl working there told me. "We have pretzel sticks?"
"Oh, okay, can I have some of those?"
"We're out of the original ones," she said. "We have cinnamon sugar?"

This place is a joke, I thought. "That's fine," I said. I took the little bag and moved down the line.

"Can I get some cinnamon-sugar sticks?" asked the man behind me.
"We're actually out, she just took the last ones," the girl said.

I turned around, feeling terribly guilty.

My eyes went up, and up, and up....and settled on this face:

"I'm sorry!" I said. He's going to sit on me, I thought. He's going to knock these pretzel sticks out of my hand and then he's going to sit on me. I didn't even want them. Oh, why didn't they have original pretzel nuggets like I wanted??

"That's alright," he muttered, looking at the menu again.

I thought about offering to share my pretzel sticks with him, but I was worried he would look at me like this:

So I just scooted on down the line, afraid to order anything else in case I ruined his order again. As I scooted, I thought to myself: "He looks kind of familiar. Where do I recognize him from?" 

I paid for my pretzel sticks and then went on to my terminal. And as I sat there, browsing through my magazine, it hit me: the man whose breakfast I had ruined was Shaquille O'Neal. 

And that, Aaron, is how I beat Shaq. 

Friday, June 29, 2012

Sister Sleepovers: A Tutorial

Sarah, Julie, and I love having sister sleepovers whenever I'm home. Usually this means all of us crowding into Julie's queen-sized bed, fighting over the body pillow, whispering and elbowing each other until we finally fall asleep in odd positions that are entirely different than the ones we wake up in.

But last night, "sister sleepover" meant something entirely different. And now, for our tutorial:

How to have a Successful Sister Sleepover without getting the Usual Bruises

1. Have your brother go on a scout camp-out. When he gets home, have him air out his tent in the living room.

2. Get really excited when you see said tent in the living room.

3. Make s'mores! If you can't find any plain chocolate, special dark chocolate nuggets with almonds from your dad's secret stash in his office will do just as well. You just have to cut out the almonds.

4. Pose excitedly while preparing these s'mores. 

5. Pre-heat the oven to 400* while cutting the almonds out of the chocolates. When you are ready to put the s'mores in the oven, turn it from "Bake" to "Broil." 

6. If your s'mores look like the picture above, then they are perfect. Top them with another graham cracker. 

7. Eat them in your tent. Pose for more pictures!

8. Have a lovely night in the tent!

Friday, June 22, 2012

The charmed life

sometimes involves.....

- waking up, going outside, picking raspberries and blackberries, and eating them with your cereal.

- breaking world records in all Track and Field events after 2 hours of playing Kinect Sports with your sister.

- tackling your siblings in a concerted effort to get stronger.

- becoming addicted to the Big Bang Theory, simply because there is so much time around here.

- eating all the caramel in the world. Literally. ALL THE CARAMEL.

- saying, "Julie! / Joseph! / Jacob! / Sarah! How're so cute?" every time I see one of those cute people.

- becoming a pro at shooting a basketball backwards.

- narrowly avoiding vicious scams by people who don't live charmed lives like stupid Patricia J. Hall.

- listening to this song on a loop:


- following up every family prayer with 12 push-ups and 21 crunches (or however old you are).

- trying to tackle your brother only to bang your head on the wall.

- wondering, "but why is the jam gone?"

- laughing hysterically because Pluto isn't technically a planet.

- blasting this song every time it is on the radio and singing along with Baby Sister:


- going to Rita's whenever I feel like it, because it is just like 5 minutes away instead of 2000 miles away like it is when I'm in Utah....

- having friends over who cover your brother's eyes when an inappropriate part comes on in the movie you're watching.

- having brothers who cover your friend's eyes when an inappropriate part comes on in the movie you're watching.

- phrases like "Screw you, Tower of Babel!" coming up in scripture study.

- spending a morning watching Steve Irwin videos on YouTube with Baby Sister.

- stacking up significant fines on your library card and feeling really embarrassed about that since they just waived $18.40 in fines from the last time you checked something out (February of 2011).

- lunching with the Padre.

- hacking into my grandma's Facebook. getting nice posts on Facebook clearly written by my grandma who loves me.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Dating Advices

As many of you may remember from May, I have a brother who is a man. And this man is getting ready to go on his first date in a matter of days.

To prepare him, I asked several of my friends (all of whom are awesome daters, obviously) for advice. For any of my readers who are seeking dating advice, I have recorded the advices below. Enjoy :)

"Open the car door for your date. Tell her she looks nice. Treat her like a lady. Don't worry about having to be smooth. Be yourself, and if she doesn't like you for who you are then she isn't someone to ask out again. You should have no problem because from what I hear you are a stud. If the conversation is hard to keep then don't worry about forcing it, it should be easy to talk with her. If it isn't, move on and ask a new girl out because she wasn't for you. Good luck with everything and don't worry about kissing a girl right away." ~the infamous Steve Johnson

"A good date movie is anything she wants to see, but the key is pretending like you're really excited." ~Zac Efron

"My main piece of advice when dating would be to date smart, by just having a good time by learning through experiences, and don't get too attached, just participate in wholesome dating :)" ~Brad

"Kissing is like drinking salt water. The more you drink, you more you want. And always google funny pickup lines before a date." ~Winnie

"Just follow your heart. That's what I always do." ~Napoleon Dynamite.

"Keep it longer than 2 hours....and simple, don't overplan! Dinner and a small activity. Maybe not even dinner, just a dessert. Open all doors. Be a good listener. Ask her questions about herself, family, future plans, hobbies, etc." ~Nicool

"Wiggle wiggle wiggle wiggle wiggle! Yeah." ~LMFAO

Philip sent in this video with his advices:

"Just be nice to your lady, and treat her with respect, and she will do the same to you." ~J Biebs

"Be super-needy. Call and text every 2-4 hours. Act super self-conscious and continuously apologize. Just for starters." ~Thank you, Jared Yarn....

And finally, Usher had this to say:

"You've got to love all your fans without falling in love with them. I can't say I've never dated a fan, but it's not a good idea....understand that you are a fantasy to them and you should be mindful of that." ~Usher

Obviously the broder is very well-prepared now.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

There Goes the Farter

Once upon a time, some fellas who call themselves the Gym Class Heroes made up a beautiful song called "The Fighter." They invited a guy named Ryan Tedder to sing with them. They inspired at least 3,190,981 people.


And then, a nice little family in Maryland ruined it. They were standing around, eating ice cream one night after one (baby) sister had been particularly flatulent, and one of them started playing this song. Except, they sang it like this:

"Until the referee rings the bell
Until both your butt cheeks start to swell
Until the crowd goes home
What we gonna do ya'll?

Give em smell, turn their heads
Gonna live life til we're dead.
Give me scars, give me pain
Then they'll say of me, say of me, say of me
There goes the farter, (oooh-oooh-oooh!)

There goes the farter (oooh-oooh-oooh!)
Here comes the 
farter (oooh-oooh-oooh!)
That's what they'll say of me, say of me, say of me,
This one's a 

And that's not even all. This irreverent family made up a dance to go along with it. And then one of them blogged about it. 

Oh, that was me. Sorry this is the second post in a row that deals with farting. I'll try to be more mature. 

Friday, June 15, 2012

The Mysterious Smell

I know I blogged barely 4 seconds ago, but I don't have a job right now, so I'm going to blog again. Just so you know how things go around here, the following conversation just happened.

I was in the kitchen, eating breakfast with Dad. Jacob was in the hallway getting ready for his wilderness survival solo camp-out that he's going on tonight. Mom was helping him. Sarah was wandering around being pretty. Jacob lit a safety match to test one out. 

Dad: Oh Jacob! Man! 
Jacob: It's just a match, Dad. 
Dad: My gosh. I mean, did you light that thing and then fart? And then wave it around?
Jacob: No....
Dad: Uh-huh, sure you didn't. 

Sarah came in the kitchen. 
Sarah: Oh man, what is that smell?

*For the record, I thought it smelled like fire, nothing abnormal for a match, but apparently everyone else thought it was super-stinky.*

Me: Dad farted. 
Sarah: Ohhhh, Dad!

She walked away, looking disgusted. 

Dad: Sarah, that's not true, now, Heather's lying. 
Sarah: Yeah right, Dad. 
Dad: Jacob came in here and lit a match and that is what the stink is, not me! I didn't fart!

But of course, Sarah was gone, so Dad turned to me. 

Dad: Now Heather, you lied about that. You lied just now! I didn't fart. 

I just laughed and continued eating my waffle. In the other room, we heard Sarah talking to Jacob. 

Sarah: Jacob, did you light a match just now?
Jacob: No, that was Dad's fart.
Dad: Hey, now that's two of you who are lying! Now I didn't fart! And you guys know that!

But we all remembered that one time long ago yesterday when Dad said to me: "You know what's nice about having an office with a screen door?" He stepped outside and stretched his arms wide. "You can always step outside and feel the breeze." And then, he let out the hugest fart ever. "You can even make your own breeze!" he continued enthusiastically. 

I was upstairs before he came back inside. 

So even after I admitted to Sarah that actually we had lied and Jacob really did light a match, we all still wondered if the stink from the match was actually a stink from the match mixed with a stink from something (or someone) else. 

A Grand Old Flag

Everyone celebrates Flag Day in their own way. Here's how one frozen yogurt shop, Top It Fro Yo, chose to celebrate: 

Here's how we chose to celebrate in my family. I invited everyone in for dinner. This is what the table was set like:

Not everyone had a good attitude about it. 

Julie asked if we were in the Great Depression. Dad thought it was hilarious. He took pictures of the table setting and had everyone smile and hold up their food. Here's the conversation that followed: 

Dad: Everyone smile! *Camera click*
Julie: I hope you captured my disgruntled expression. 
Heather: Stop making fun of my meal! It'll all be worth it when you try the tea I made. 
Julie: We're seriously having tea and crackers?? I thought that was a joke!
Heather: It's a really cool tea. It's mint vanilla. I saw it on Pinterest. It just took a little longer to make than I thought it would so I didn't have time to make scones. 
Dad: I think this is great! My college daughter's got me on a diet! 
Mom: Let's pray. 

We prayed. I stood to pour the tea, at the same time teaching some etiquette things. Julie angrily chomped away at her crackers. 

 When I got to Mom, she said:

Mom: Wait! Is this British tea?
Heather: Yes. It is a special kind of....
Mom: Then I can't drink it! 

She stoutly turned her cup upside-down. 

Heather: But - ! I worked really hard on it!
Mom: I am an American! I will not drink British tea! Sarah!!! Put that down!
Sarah: I think it's kinda good.....
Mom: No! I will not drink this! I revolt! This is a revolution!
Julie: Yeah! I don't want tea and crackers for dinner! I'm starving!

I slumped my shoulders. "Alright," I sighed, and went over to the oven. "I guess we can just have these dumb ol' things." I set a platter of Belgian waffles on the table. Everyone rejoiced. 

We had a great dinner of Belgian waffles, syrup, whipped cream, strawberries, blueberries, and blackberries. We had a special guest sing the National Anthem.

We had a contest to guess how many official flag designs there have been. We had a contest to see who could design the best American flag with their waffle. We apologized for the historical inaccuracy of our little skit at the beginning of the dinner.

If anyone is interested in the recipe for the vanilla mint tea, here it is:

2 cups hot water
1/4 tsp vanilla extract
3 drops green food coloring
1 drop blue food coloring
2 drops yellow food coloring
3 mint leaves sprinkled on top of the tea as decoration

Serve with sugar and coffee creamer.

Please note: this is not a real recipe. I just threw it together for the purpose of this meal.....which was a joke. And for the record, Mom and Sarah were both supposed to revolt, but Sarah actually liked the tea so she just skipped out on her part. And Dad and Julie were totally unsuspecting and they played their parts perfectly :)

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Cookies and Karma

I've heard that when you come back home after an extended absence, no matter what you learned while you were living by yourself, you fall back into the same habits you were in at the time that you first left home.

For example, if you always slept in, and expected your mom to wake you up, you might start doing that again. Even if you had a 6:00 AM custodial job while you were gone. If you used to bicker constantly with your siblings, you might find yourself getting frustrated by everything they do. Etc.

Now, I've never been someone who bickers constantly with my siblings, but I have to admit that I have felt my maturity sliding backwards ever since coming home. Also, I am perfectly capable of feeding myself while at college, but for some reason, when I come home, it is so hard to get up and get myself a snack. I usually just get one of my siblings to do it for me.

Just yesterday, I was working on a school project that was due in a matter of hours. One of my sisters was looking at facebook and tumblr and YouTube, "prepping" herself for the crushing disappointment she had come to associate with job-hunting before she jumped back into the fray of online applications. My tomach rumbled. I made a little plea for some food. Sister refused to help. This cycle repeated itself several times.

......An hour later, I got up and got myself some food.

A few hours after that, Sister and I had both relocated to her room upstairs. By this time, my project was due in 45 minutes. Sister was hanging up clothes. There was a knock on the door. Sister and I both ignored it, hoping the other would get it. The knocker continued knocking insistently.

"Sister??" I asked incredulously, as if my supremely granted right to lounge about at all times somehow took precedence over hers.

"It's probably a salesman anyway," she said.

The knocking was way too quick and little-fisted to be a salesman. She knew it as well as I did.

"Sister! That is obviously not a salesman! Why are you being such a brat!" I stomped out of the room and ran down the stairs, where someone was still knocking. Sister slammed the bedroom door after me.

It was not a salesman who was knocking (thank goodness, since I still hadn't put on my makeup). It was a little boy from across the street who had borrowed a cup of sugar from us earlier to make cookies. Now he stood on our porch, holding a plate of cookies.

"Neighbor!" I greeted him. "Did you make these?" He nodded. He looked a little confused. I think he didn't recognize me, since I'm usually at college, and he was worried he had gotten the wrong house. But then I called him by name and he got even more confused.

"They look great!" I said. He handed me the plate, nodding. I noticed the marshmallows and chunks of Hershey's chocolate on top of the cookies. "Are they s'mores cookies?" I asked. He nodded, eyes wide. "You did a good job," I said, smiling. He nodded. "I can't wait to taste them!"

He nodded. "Okay, well.....see ya later!" I said. He nodded and continued standing there. "Alright thanks!" I said, and backed up a little. He started to turn around so I slowly closed the door and brought the cookies to the kitchen.

"Karmaaaa!" sang a little voice in my head. "I am getting what I deserve," I told myself smugly. "Sister doesn't get a cookie because she was too lazy to answer the door."

I took a cookie and bit into it. I danced around the kitchen a little. "I'm going to finish this here," I decided, "and when Sister asks who was at the door, I'm going to tell her. And she'll have to come downstairs and get her own cookie."

I had barely taken my third bite when my feet started carrying me to the stairs. A better plan was forming. I would take my cookie up there and eat it in front of her. And then I would probably get some crumbs in her bed, and everyone hates crumbs in their bed.

Wouldn't you know it, I tripped on the first step. My cookie landed on the stair, marshmallow-side-up.

"Karmaaaaa!" sang a little voice in my head. "I am getting what I deserve," I thought sadly.

So Sister got a cookie, too. And no one got crumbs in anyone else's bed. And I turned my project in on time. And I'm pretty sure Sister is going to get an awesome amazing job, so it looks like everything works out in the end, all pettiness aside.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Sweet Skills

So the other day, I was watching the Bachelorette, and Emily said that she didn't feel like she had a lot of talents. My immediate reaction was, "What the heck Emily! Yes you do! You're awesome! You're so pretty and nice and sometimes you say funny things!" And then I realized that "being pretty" doesn't count as a talent.

Neither does being nice, and even saying funny things occasionally can't really be counted as a talent.

And then I realized that I don't have that many talents either. Here are the things that I consider my talents:

- teaching (this is to be seen, I guess)
- txting
- typing fast
- writing (letters, blogs, papers, etc.)
- hair-doing
- nannying
- trying new recipes
- facebook-stalking (I'm not as good as Winnie, but I'm pretty good at it)
- singing a little bit and piano a little bit and dancing a little bit
- packing lots of stuff into a little bag / suitcase / car

Anyways. That looks like a pretty decently-sized list, but when you think about it, none of those talents would get me landed on America's Got Talent. So I am determined to get some new talents. Some cool ones!

Here are the talents I want to develop:

- doing pull-ups on a pull-up bar. These are always impressive. I want to be able to do EIGHT.
- trick-riding on a horse. I need a horse for this, so I might not actually be able to develop this talent until I have married a cowboy.
- playing the ukulele. So I guess I will need a ukulele. After I buy a car, I will get one.
- whistling. I've never been able to whistle. I'd really like to able to.
- making cream puffs. Maybe I will learn how while I'm home!

If anyone has advice for how I can master any of these talents, please let me know :)

Tuesday, June 12, 2012


In no particular order, my favorite movies are:

anddd 4. Madagascar 2.

Also in no particular order, 4 of my favorite people in Maryland right now are:

1. Julie
2. Joseph
3. Jacob
4. Sarah.

A few months ago, we found out the Madagascar 3 was going to be coming out. AH! We all love Madagascar 2. Very very much. It is hilarious. If you haven't watched it, you should. Because we enjoyed the second Madagascar so much, we thought we might feel the same way about this third movie. 

So, on Saturday, Julie, Joseph, Jacob, Sarah and I dressed up like the Madagascar penguins, did a photo shoot in the front yard, and went to the movie theater. We penguin-walked into the theater, bought our tickets, found our seats, and had a great time. 

Our consensus on the movie: It was great! It was funny! We liked it! 

Favorite line: "I'm obviously just an emotional whoopie cushion for you to sit on!"

Favorite character: Is that even a question?? King Julien! 

Saturday, June 9, 2012

New Coat

There was once a time when I was the youngest in my family. I know....weird, right? So that phase didn't last long. It ended officially with the birth of a red-haired, wide-eyed, explosion of a person named Nicole, on June 9th, 1992....twenty years ago. 

I say "explosion of a person" because Nicole is one of those people who is just exploding with personality and awesomeness.

Obviously, Kelly and I were happy to have her.  
Mostly, when I remember Nicole as a baby, I remember her with a shocked expression and hair standing straight up. I remember her blowing bubbles in the bathtub. I remember playing Barbies with her for hours on end, and then playing with our matching horses for the rest of the day. 

One time, we were all cleaning the pond behind our house during Spring Break. At one point, Nicole got some pond water on herself and left to change her clothes. When she came back, she was too nervous to get back in the pond, so instead, she stood on top of a storm drain and made up a song to encourage us. For some reason, it didn't exactly encourage us, and we encouraged her to get down. We still tease her about that!
Nicole is super-social, and she makes some really good friends. Her best friend Gina is a favorite of our family. 

Nicole and I have an interesting history with stuffed animals. One time, Nicole was annoyed at me about something, and I didn't realize that she was. She came into my room, where I was calmly sitting on my bed, reading a book. She was tenderly holding a stuffed animal of mine, a penguin named Shuffle. Smiling broadly, she said: "Heather, do you like this penguin?"

I looked up. "Oh, sure," I said, and went back to reading. 

"Well that's nice," she said, and then proceeded to beat the penguin on the floor repeatedly. 

It's okay though, because I got back at her. Nicole has this Blues Clues-esque stuffed animal gender-confused dog called BenKetty. I don't know why, but for some reason, I hate it. I think it annoyed me for real one night and then after that it was just so fun hating it that I couldn't stop. 

One time I sent Nicole a picture on her phone of Benketty hanging from the fan. 

Another time, I sent her a picture of Benketty about to fall in the toilet. 

In response, she sent me a picture of Benketty holding my purse one night before I went on a date. The txt said, "Look who's coming with you on your daaaate!" She also took a picture of Benketty in my suitcase when I was about to go back to Utah with the caption, "You will never escape!" 

Would you end such a glorious back-and-forth? Neither would I. 

Nicole is very generous. She always gives me zzzz's so I can be more bootylicious. Also, one time she sent me a care package that was literally THE BEST THING OF MY LIFE. It was so great that sometimes I get a little teary thinking about it. Nicole just is so good at thinking of others. 

One of my favorite things about Nicole is how hilarious she is. She's funny when she's just waking up and she trudges downstairs with her hair all piled on her head for dinnertime. She's funny when she's singing at the dinner table, or when she's explaining politics to me. She's funny when she's talking to the birds or imitating them. She's funny when she's giving a talk or when she's gushing about Dream Street or Steve Johnson or Winnie. She's just funny all the times!

Nicole's unofficial motto for life is WWFRD: What Would Flo Rida Do? She is a great rapper. And she finds really great music and shares it with me, which I appreciate. 

Nicole is a princess, and she loves princess things. In fact, her blog is called "Life as a Princess" and should be read by everyone and their dog because it is so entertaining and great. In high school, everyone called her a princess, and when this one really adorable boy asked her to prom, he gave her a tiara and did it really cutely. Nicole deserves things like that to happen to her, and she looked absolutely gorgeous when she went to Prom with her princess self. 

Nicole is super-photogenic. Just see above for proof: ^

Misery loves company, and when I am miserable, I often choose Nicole as my company. She is sympathetic and hilarious. When I complain to her, I feel better. She makes me laugh. She is great.

Nicole has come to visit me in Utah many times, and we always do such fun things when she does! The first time, we went to the Bean Museum and took funny pictures. We went ice-skating and to Bridal Veil Falls. It was wonderful having her there :)

Now that she is at BYU-Idaho and I am in Provo, she comes to visit more often. I always try to plan fun things when she visits because I want her to think I am cool, like her! Nicole is always fun to do stuff with because she is so funny and always makes me laugh. Besides which, she loves my friends, and they love her, so we all get along great. 

Nicole is someone who is dependable. I love her because if she says she is going to do something, then she does it! She is also really nice to have on road trips and at movie nights because she is comfortable to lean on, and she is nice about it.

Nicole has style! In high school, she would often wear pajama pants to school. It stressed my dad out a lot. He would sometimes work himself into fits as he imagined his daughter going to college without knowing how to dress herself. But he needn't have worried, because Nicole gracefully rose to the occasion. She now dresses SO cutely and so stylishly. She has about 30 cardigans. She wears cute boots and scarves. She is cool.

Nicole is who she is, no matter who she is interacting with. I love this about her, and I'm pretty sure that's one of the big reasons why she has so many friends. She's not trying to impress anyone by being someone else, and people love who she is, so there's no need to, anyway.  

I love doing photo shoots with Nicole because she always makes them so funny! This picture (above) is from this last Christmas. My mom wanted pictures of all of us with our baptism quilts. I think it was cold outside and that's why we were all doing those faces? Maybe? Anyway, Nicole's makes me laugh every time I see this picture :)

Troy Toy was one of our favorites of the pest control boys from summer 2009. I mention him because it was funny to me how Nicole interacted with those boys. She would sit with them in the living room, making friendship bracelets and talking about all her boy problems. They loved her, and Troy wore that friendship bracelet for a long time after leaving us. 

Nicole is a great travel buddy. She is so good at directions, first of all, so that is super-handy. She just kind of has an innate sense of direction. Sometimes it fails when we tried to go to New Jersey and ended up nearly in New York at 5 in the morning, searching for a hotel we hadn't planned on needing. But that wasn't her fault, and I loved having her in the car with me, because she was so fun, and she stayed awake with me. 

I don't know if you are aware, but Nicole is a superhero. She even gave a speech at her graduation about it. 

Nicole loves DC. She was a nanny here last year, and she got to know the city pretty well. She integrated herself into the "Moms' Club." She figured out the Metro. And then, at the end of her term as nanny, she brought all of us to DC and took us on a "Tour d' Nicole," where she showed us all of her favorite places. We loved it!

I can't even really get over how great Nicole is. She keeps getting better and better! I love being her sister :)