happy feasting day.

are we really REALLY already a week past the giving of thanks!? my mind is blown. to say time is flying would be a complete understatement. valentines day seems like just yesterday so i can only imagine what tomorrow will bring. in all the hustle of the season, i'm trying to really focus in on feeling the true spirit and meaning we celebrate these glorious holidays and be so so grateful for all we do have and are very blessed beyond measure with. so, first and foremost here are just a few things i am grateful for this year: [warning, here comes the sappy]

*the gospel of Jesus Christ. i'm so grateful to be a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. what peace and comfort this brings with all that goes on around us. 

*our loving Savior Jesus Christ for fulfilling such a divine roll in His atoning sacrifice for us. His ministry on this earth and selflessness are such incredible examples that we should each strive to become and be to those around us.

*our Heavenly Father for knowing me better than i know myself and giving me the strength to figure out the path that i was meant to pave while here on this earth. everything he made was and is perfect. i love seeing the perfection of His creations around us.

*my parents. their love, understanding, support, faithfulness, kindness and strength have been the foundation to where i am today. what better gift than to have such wonderful parents and examples to teach and guide us through our mortal existence. 

*my husband. he strengthens me each and every day and is my rock. he keeps the laughter and positive/eternal outlook in our life and has built me up in some of the hardest of times. his tender heart helps me to see people as they truly should be seen and want to help those around. he may joke around a lot but i have witnessed that tender side to him many times and boy does it melt/inspire me.

*i could write pages but to spare you lets just list them. my siblings, extended relatives, in laws, friends, a healthy body, a place to call home, work, food, the kindness of others, our ward, prayer, answers to prayers, faith, a means of transportation, technology that allows us to still see each other although being miles upon miles apart. i could go on and on. and on. remember in those hard times to just look around and see all you have to be grateful for [note to self]. 

our thanksgiving this year couldn't have been better. the closer to the holidays we got, the more homesick this girl felt. i wasn't sure i was excited to be away from our immediate families and might have shed many tears at the thought. we decided to join jeremy's cousin, her cute little family and her in laws for the occasion and i couldn't have felt more at home if they tried. 

jessica (jeremy's cousin) is the sweetest girl you will meet. her and blake actually met through jeremy so there are always fun times reminiscing when we all get together. 

jeremy and i had planned on leaving late wednesday night after work, to head over to lake butler where they live [2.5 hour drive] so he could play in the turkey bowl the next morning. things were going well, blake had given us the address to their new house and we were set on our way. for all those who don't know, lake butler is in the middle of n o w h e r e v i l l e, fl. no cell phone service to be had and after one failed attempt at finding our destination with the little service we could muster, jeremy was determined to find their house just from memory and street signs alone. one scared girl [can you blame me? here we were in the middle of the night, no cell service, middle of no where, in an unfamiliar place. need i say more?] and one hour later we finally stopped at a local gas station to use their phone to call blake. this is how i felt. after all it was 2 in the morn.

all in the name of football. boys are silly i tell ya. blake then came to the rescue and we made our way to their place. jeremy vowed to fall into bed the second we got there but of coarse as we made our way in, the conversations started. finally we rolled into bed by about 3:30 and knew 7:30 would come too early.  

as the boys went and played in their annual turkey bowl games, jessica, the two littles and i stayed home to play and watch the macy's thanksgiving parade. it's a fun tradition for me so i was thrilled to wake up to find her watching. good times were had with their two cute[st] babes, gavin and olivia. we played a good round of "come and get me". man i wish i could steal them away! 

sharing their minute maids.

blurried visions are sometimes the best captures in my book.

where's gavin???

as they went to a family lunch turkey feast with blake's family, jeremy and i set off on a little adventure so he could show me one of the towns he grew up in just [twenty] minutes away. i was giddy. i had been told countless stories since we met of this town [lake city] and the adventures of jeremy as a young lad here. it was about time i got acquainted myself. here are a few pictures from this visit.

one of the houses they lived in.

the middle school he went to.

where his history at texas roadhouse began. looks a little different, eh?

from the time he was arrested [being a normal teenage boy, him and his friends trying to blow up a dumpster..whoops.] to him and a friend hitch hiking all day long from lake city to lake butler, i was excited as could be to see all these places in which they took place! haha let the good times roll.

we returned to make final preparations for our big feast. jeremy and jessica making roadhouse potatoes.

and hold some cute pups.
their dog recently had these babies and they were too cute to resist. can we have one babe? please and thank you. 

also, we must not forget to mention FaceTime with my family. my brother justin and his wife natalie had found out with they were having and we were excited see the big reveal!! their having a baby...

BOY!! couldn't have been more excited for them!! i was guessing a girl but i should have known [miller boys make miller boys] :) we have yet seen a baby girl in our family of grands but i'm determined it will happen. even if i have to make it happen myself [wink wink].

then it was time for everyone to arrive so we could all eat until our stomachs ached and were lying flat on the floor, happy as could be. overflowing the kitchen with all the feast essentials, thick southern accents and the kindest [a word?] of people, i couldn't help but sit back and take it all in. something about that southern hospitality couldn't have made this first thanksgiving away any better than it was. 

stuffing our faces

our game faces.

back to blake and jessica's empty handed but had a fun time people watching as we browsed. it sure brings out the crazies doesn't it? another fun night of thanksgiving football and fun with these two and we were off to bed with plans to return home the next morning. 

such a good time was had thanks to blake and jess for everything. we enjoyed every second of it. we love being closer to these relatives of jeremy's out here and getting to see them more often. we hope each of you had a marvelous day of thanks as well. happy turkey day!


from our shining sea to yours.

who doesn't love the feel of soft sand between the toes--warm ocean breezes sweeping across your face--the luscious scent of the ocean? it really truly can clear the soul of all that crazy stuff called stress. when i said i threw all cares out the window, that was no lie. any that weren't gone out that cold utah window were bottled up and sent out to the seas for whomever sailor could find them. i thank my lucky stars to have had a break from work and...life? 

now don't get me wrong, i certainly love my job/career more than i love salty snacking but that doesn't mean there weren't things about it that a girl needed to have a break from and this move has been just the icing on the cake. (thank you palm trees) 

so here are a few pictures of the many trips to the beach we/i have taken whether it be to bask in the sun or play in the 5 second rainfalls. thank you florida for your ever-changing weather. thank you ocean for letting us view you. thank you washed-up jelly fish for letting me gandor in your cool looks (but not stinging me). thank you east coast sea food that is allowing me to start maybe thinking about liking you. thank you beautiful sunsets that leave me wanting more. and thank you memories that are being created and cherished all the rest of our lives plus more.


here we are. finally.

you guys, get excited this is finally happening. i may or may not have started about 7 blogs before this. let's all stand up and do a little jig that jill is finally finally FINALLY doing this. moving from family and close friends has lit this little fire under my bum to get it going. finally. (have i said that yet? not enough? okay, finally.) so i'm kind of hoping you all feel the love as you read.

florida has been nothing short of a dream come true in my book. (if you're prone to tropical envy read no further) never would have thought in my 14 year old dreams would i ever live 10 minutes from a beach. ever. not just a "let's go to the beach and go back to our hotel" kind of thing but a "let's go to the beach and go home to sleep in our own bed, cook in our own kitchen" sort of thing. whew. i'm pinching myself left and right i tell ya. 

at the same time, dearest family and friends are greatly missed and sometimes even the cold winter-coming weather (yes i did just say that--holidays are so magical with some cuddling up in your toasty house, winter fury raging outside, hot cocoa in hand, tree lights lit.) if the mall of millennia hadn't been decorated to the max with elves and sparkling lights, these short-wearing legs wouldn't have known much the difference. christmas in just over a month? are you sure? cannot be happening. mr burch and i plan to start some different traditions. present opening on daytona beach shores, let's do this. 

first things first. trekking a massive moving truck and towing our little car behind across this beauty of a country brought its adventures and trust me, a girl can't even lie when she says she was nervous as all get out. for starters, mr burch hasn't been blessed with the love of road trips as i. now i'm not sure about you but think we are safe to say 34 hrs of driving is a good size road trip. and with that being said, we were blessed, so blessed in so many ways. he said multiple times "Heavenly Father is helping me through this. the past (twenty) hours have sure gone by fast!" i was happy as a clam. we had so much fun, it couldn't have gone better even if i had begged. (okay, there might have been some begging)

here are some pictures from our travels:

(please excuse some of the no-hair-doing, make-up-less face going on there. i let all cares out that utah window and have yet to let them back in)
as i was saying:
*laramie brought a quickly-fixed broken tire axel.
*jeremy went through his very first tunnel. he was excited and i was too to be there to witness.
*apple juice for breakfast in nebraska.
*lunch and quick visit with the best missouri aunt and uncle there ever was.
*st. louis arch kissin.
*nashville dreams coming true.
*g o r g e o u s Tennessee (who would have known?--well at least we didn't).
*on-the-verge-of-your-marriage-ending, side track adventure seeking (maybe i will tell that story later. its quite funny now, not so much at the time. but just know if our marriage survived that, eternity we are set. haha).
*atlanta was cool, real cool.
*a stop and sleeping time at jeremy's aunt and uncles an hour before the destination and the next day---

we made it!! we arrived in heaven port orange, fl on friday morning October 4.  what an adventure it has been. we are loving every second we get to spend exploring the ins and outs this place has to offer and I cannot wait to share it with ya'll. (i mean...this word is a must here if referring to more than one person. fair warning, it will be said.)
here we are. finally.