really though.

how many freaking inches of snow is this? 
like 5? 6? too many? it's been snowing for three and a half days straight... just incase you were wondering. the only things keeping me alive are hot chocolate, prayer, boots/socks, and more hot chocolate. if i ever mentioned the idea of living in utah after college, i take it back. this is not fun!


hefty homework assignments

sometimes school is so incredibly difficult. with 18 credits this semester, i can't say i wasn't expecting chaos. most nights i'm up until the wee hours of morning finishing papers, solving math problems, or researching information. it is very overwhelming and stressful. and then, on rare occasions, i am assigned a task that brings happiness and serenity back into my life.  
this week, i practiced my handwriting.
i hope my professor is proud of my hard work.
i love my major!


a cold combat

winter and i are not friends. i think we try to be cordial most of the time, but i've done my fair share of talking crap behind its back, and it's ruined a handful of my january mornings. today, though, winter took the game to a whole new level. and i have photographic evidence to prove it. scotty and i walked outside this morning to a mysterious foggy world. the familiar mountains on each side of us were nowhere to be found. heck - who am i kidding? we could barely see the other side of the street. it was quite a sight to see. naturally i wanted to take a picture of this cool-yet-eerie air to document for my family, instagram followers, and maybe even my posterity.
cool, right?
but i thought i could do better.
i took a step to my right, hoping to shoot from a better angle.
but, no.
winter would not have it that way.
a sneaky patch of death ice was waiting for me as i took my step. within 2 seconds, i was on the ground crying. at least i got an exciting action shot so all of you can know what a slipping person sees from midair. i hope you can live vicariously through my picture and skip experiencing it for yourselves.
winter, bring it on.


ashley & automotives

so... tuesday. weird day. there were two parts of that day that made me think "WOAH!" the first was extremely negative, but the second was really positive. and since they both revolve around cars, i figured i'd slap them both in the same post. two noteworthy, car-related experiences. ready?

1. i ruined our car.
okay, i personally did not ruin it. i'm too stubborn and bitter to take the blame at this point in my life. i would rather accuse utah and its crap-hole freeways. long story short: i was driving to school, a loose bumper appeared (out of thin air) in the middle of the lane, and i ran over it. viola. cars were surrounding me, or else i would have swerved out of the way. now my sweet 6-month-old baby is broken, and ironically not covered in our "bumper-to-bumper" warranty. below is my diagram depicting the before and after frontal views of the hyundai.
i mean, i'm not planning on switching my major to art any time soon, but i'd say it's pretty spot on. the three things i gained from this annoying experience are: my husband is freaking awesome and loves me no matter what, "bumper-to-bumper" warranty is slightly misleading, and bad things happen in utah. 

2. i happened upon this quote via pinterest. 
first i was like, "i don't get it." and then i was like, "oh my gosh, i don't even want to think about cars right now because i just ran over a bumper two hours ago and cracked the front of my car and i kind of want to cry when i think about the whole situation... but THIS IS AWESOME!" do we use prayer as a tool to direct choices and decisions in life? do we pray consistently? or wait to utilize prayer until we are deserted or in danger or in the middle of an emergency, and use it as a last resort? such a solid quote. i want to share it with everyone i know.

put those two experiences together, and maybe i need to incorporate prayer into my morning routine and asking my father in heaven for safe travels to and from school. and i also need to thank him for my understanding husband. and as my final thought, i think the commuters of utah are conspiring against me.


speak to my soul

in my monday morning class, a girl voiced the following opinion: "our (future) students need to learn how to keep the rules before they can break them." wait. what? break rules? i deemed her words thought-provoking, and found myself pondering them throughout the rest of the afternoon. my reaction to her comment kept swaying back and forth from two different thoughts: 1) i hope you never teach my children, and 2) i need to break some rules. and what better rules to break than the new year resolutions i had made just 14 days prior?
so in the spirit of learning, scotty and i participated in a first-hand and rule-breaking experience held at the cocoa bean cupcake cafe in provo. we were surrounded by sweet smells, hot cocoa, and cupcakes galore. 
don't worry, we devoured every crumb. 
i still don't know if i completely agree with the girl's words, but man those cupcakes are delicious. hooray for rebellion and rule breaking!


the saddest 30 seconds of my life

we dropped my brother off at the missionary training center on wednesday. prior to that, we had a great morning with a delicious lunch at zupas and fun times bonding with relatives. i struggled to grasp the reality of the situation - that those were, in fact, the last few moments i had with my brother for the next 24 months. it couldn't be true! my heart assumed that after lunch was over, we'd peruse the byu bookstore or get ice cream from the creamery like old times.
instead, we endured an awkward 2-minute car ride with tanner forcing back sniffles and tears, dad cracking jokes to redirect any thoughts of sadness, and mom giving her final last-minute advice. "follow the rules!" "be good!" and before we knew it, we were parked inside the mtc. 
suddenly it occurred to me that i was about to leave my brother on a curb, and drive away not seeing him for another two years. i choked. is he ready? did he memorize my email address? have i been a good sister? do i have any advice? i've never left the country for two years. i've never dedicated that amount of time to only serving the lord. i had one last chance for an interaction with him; whatever words came out of my mouth would be the last thing he heard from me! what could i possibly do or say to convey my feelings of love and pride to my sweet brother in a minute or less? 
 instead of giving him final motivating words or thought-provoking advice, i just cried. i hugged him and somehow managed to mumble "i'll miss you" and he replied with a "love you."
and then somehow, i was back in the van with my parents, scotty, and tanner. everything happened so quickly. mitchell was gone, and it felt like someone had blindfolded me and pushed me off a cliff. today, i am happier. i am happy mitchell is gone. i'm happy we have a forever family. and i'm happy we will get emails once a week and phone calls twice a year. i am so proud of my little brother! 
... but i will sure be happier when he's back.


something pink

just a thought.
a few weeks ago, a friend asked me the following question:
if you could redo your wedding, what would you do differently?
i laughed and said, "i would have gone tanning the whole month before!" showed him the following picture, and that was that.
BUT, after much reflection and consideration into my response, i now have a different answer. BUT, before i tell you what that answer is, let me say one thing! i wouldn't change anything about my wedding day. it was perfect for me. BUT, if someone were holding a gun to my head telling me to change one thing, that one thing would be the color of my dress.
a pink wedding dress.
i totally could have rocked it. 
what would you do differently? 


christmas break highlights

aside from the christmas eve, christmas day, mitchell's farewell, and the movie watching i already blogged about, scotty and i did a lot of other fun things over christmas break!

i got pretty christmas nails
 we laughed at mitchell and tanner and their jokes
 we carried on our 21-year-old tradition of pictures with santa
 we visited the strip
 ... and got a pretty view of it from the new HOV lane :)
 we played fun card games with scotty's parents
 i enjoyed a wonderful fab 5 luncheon at BJ's
... and especially my complimentary birthday pazookie 

and meeting kami's sweet baby jack! 
he is a beautiful little baby. i'm in love.
i visited my mom's place of work at the world market center. she plays with christmas decorations all day, so i got a sneak peek at them :)
 after that, she treated me to farm basket.
scotty and tanner long-boarded from our house down to farm basket!
crazy boys. it only took them 22 minutes!
amidst all this fun, i got my wisdom teeth out and ate lots of fro yo.
and i spent lots of time with my husband.
we mostly shopped and munched on red velvet cafe chocolate chip cookies. 
leah did my hair!
i love it dark.
 and i hung out with these cute kids. i love my little cousins!
overall, it was a pretty successful trip. 
now it's time to get back into routine and prepare for school to start. 

movie time > school time

scotty and i are really enjoying this break from school.
i fear i'm getting too comfortable with this whole no-responsibility thing!
i mean, during the school year i hardly watch movies... 
and if i do, i usually force myself to sit down and watch them. 
movies just can't make my priority list when school is in session.

so, since i currently have no readings, homework assignments, upcoming tests, etc, we have had a lot of time to watch movies! how sad is my life in which 7 movies in one week is overly exciting to me? here is a list and my humble opinions of the movies we've seen. 

1. Jack Reacher
surprisingly really interesting. ron and kim took us and it was very enjoyable. it's about a shooting and all of the detective work after said shooting.  i liked it way more than i thought i would; i think it's fascinating how people can think so outside of the box and pay such close attention to detail. i didn't really like the main girl, but who doesn't love tom cruise? i'd rate it 3.5/5, only taking points off because of the violence and the lack of a good romance :)
2. Pitch Perfect
i can't believe i waited so long to enjoy this hilarious movie! a lot of good one liners, plus a ton of great songs. i'm a sucker for a cappella and synchronized dance moves. mitchell gave me this for christmas, and i am way excited to own it! i feel like i was laughing the entire time that we watched it. 5/5 stars for sure!
3. Total Recall 
i don't know. maybe this shouldn't be on the list because i fell asleep after four minutes. but scotty liked it! 
4. Dark Knight Rises
a timeless movie. i'll never get sick of watching christian bale and anne hathaway. i mean, bane gives me the freaking creeps, but it's still a good movie.
i give it 4 stars.
5. The Avengers
a classic. scotty and i freaking love this movie, as mentioned in this earlier blog post. a perfect combination of wit, action, humor, and adventure. 5/5 stars. 
6. Breaking Dawn pt. 2
i actually had high hopes for this movie; i heard nothing but positive reviews from a variety of facebook friends. however, i thought it was boring beyond belief... and i think that's saying a lot coming from someone who read all of the books and went to previous midnight showings. i think the "sex scene" in the beginning was so ridiculously stupid that i couldn't take the rest of the movie seriously. plus, the whole plot was just edward and bella gathering friends to touch their baby. weird. and the cheesy recap at the end almost made me gag. i have no desire to watch it ever again. 0/5 stars. to cancel out the negativity, here is a funny picture of robert pattinson:
7. Les Miserables 
i seriously saved the best for last. words cannot describe the emotions i felt while watching this movie. the cast had so much passion, and the whole thing was so real! the storyline, the familiar tunes, the tears, the blood. i could almost smell the dirt when valjean was carrying marius through the sewers. i cried twice, but i guess i shouldn't really call it "crying." i was weeping. sobbing. noises were coming out of my mouth - it wasn't like a few tears silently ran down my face. everything was so powerful. i loved anne hathaway, amanda seyfried and especially eddie redmayne and samantha barks. what a great cast! i walked out of the theater wanting to be a better person, feeling so blessed for all that i have, and wanting to hug and cherish all of my family members. i left feeling inspired to be kind and to serve others. isn't that how every movie should leave you feeling? this movie is an inspiration! 8 out of 5 stars.
i'm already dying to see it again.
hopefully we can squeeze in a few more movies before school starts!
any suggestions? 


2013 resolutions

happy new year! how did i ring in the new year? by blogging and pondering life's deepest questions! i keep having this reoccurring thought process questioning who i am. who am i? who is ashley marx? what is important to me? what do other people see in me? and i believe i can break down all of my qualities and characteristics into 5 main categories:

the spiritual ashley
ashley the wife
the social ashley
the academic ashley
the physical ashley

... and at any given time, i can only be two of those at once.
i rotate from being really social and hanging out with friends and being a good wife, to focusing only on church and school and putting all other relationships on the back burner. other weeks i am caught up on assignments and have straight a's, but i also gain 5+ lbs.  sometimes i am so good to my husband and i give him all of the attention he needs, but then i forget about praying or my church calling. it is so incredibly difficult to balance all five ashleys at once.

so this year, i am going to set goals that cater to all the ashleys,
hopefully bringing balance to my life.

spiritual: attend the temple at least twice a month, 
and read the book of mormon 
wife: do spontaneous things with my husband,
and follow these rules i found on pinterest
social: be more outgoing in the ward, 
and invite people over more often  
academic: straight A's next semester, 
and no ditching class
physical: NO CAFFINE in 2013, 
and exercise at least 3 times a week

i figured if i blogged about these goals, the publicity would pressure me into accomplishing them. so wish me luck as i strive to make 2013 a year of bettering myself and becoming the person i want to be.
it's time to kiss 2012 and my unbalanced ashley goodbye!