Monday, December 30, 2013

Whoa Baby

Apparently I got everyone all excited thinking that there was a baby in our immediate future.

"We have one particular present we think everyone will really enjoy"

Texting my mom "I have 2 sewing projects for us!!! I made it almost 29 years and now I need to learn".

Sorry guys, this was not code for I'm having a baby.

The sewing projects: Making headbands to hold back all my crazy hair when I climb and crocheting a scarf... for my dog. ha.

The present? We bought ourselves a slack line at the Pawn Shop before going up north and were overly excited about it and using it with Pat (He had jokingly got us a Intro to Slacklining dvd a while ago). It was awesome and provided some great entertainment.

And sometimes this happens.
In short, there's no baby. Although I wouldn't mind getting another puppy.

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas! We hope your holidays are full of fun, family and lots of cookies!
We are letting the teenagers take over our house while we party in Provo with the rest of the Portela clan. Chad's hoping the snow will magically melt and we can rock climb and we have one particular Christmas present we think everyone will really enjoy. Get excited peeps. We'll catch you after the holidays :)

Monday, December 23, 2013

Getting a "win"

I've had some pretty craptastic climbing attempts as of late. My little baby arms have been revolting and my stupid nerve has effectively rendered my right leg useless at times. Then there's my stupid brain that, I swear, likes to sabotage me when I least expect it. "Your a foot of the ground!!!!" my brain yells, "time to p-a-n-i-c!!!". So after a few sad attempts at climbing last weekend I really wanted to rock it this weekend.

Can we please take a moment to note that it's December and Chad is in shorts. #winning
I started with miserable failure on Friday night. Yaaaay. Nothing like a complete and utter fail to boost your confidence and start your weekend out right. On Saturday we headed out to the busiest rock climbing wall in our area, good ol' Chuckawalla. Talk about wanting a win, there were a lot of people out climbing and I really didn't want to suck in front of everyone. I didn't need to be a rockstar, just not suck. 

And I did do well. In fact, I rocked it! I climbed the hardest rated climb that I've ever done (5.10a). Not only that, it was the highest climb I've ever done as well. Ba-Bam!


On Sunday we were climbing in Green Valley when I climbed my first 5.9 (Perky's Playground) clean. This wall has a lot of history for Chad and I. The climb right next to this is where Chad took his first fall lead climbing. It was terrifying. And this 5.9 is one that I couldn't even start two months ago. Literally couldn't even start. This climb is my favorite right now if only because it shows how far I've come and how strong (mentally and physically) I've gotten. No resting on the rope for me. No desperation grabbing. No stupid brain sabotaging me. I climbed that wall perfectly. Like a freaking boss.

The moss at Green Valley Gap was gorgeous after all that snow!
Chad was also a rock star this weekend. Throwing dynos into his climbs wherever he could. Dyno: Where you leap off the rock like a champ, flinging your whole body vertical up to a distant hand hold. He also led climbed his 5.11b (Skin Graft). He's good folks. And mighty fun to watch and cheer for.

It was an amazeballs weekend full of climbing successes! And now that Monday is here... we can both barely move. We can't wait for that hot tub in Provo. Oh yeah, and to see our family too ;)

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Awesome Thursday

Happy Anniversary to my very favorite person.  
It's been an awesome 4 years. I love you and can't wait to see where the next year takes us!

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

How NOT to deal with snow

People are starting to get desperate. They want this snow and ice gone, and they are starting to go a little nutty trying to get rid of it. Take for example the good people I work with. They are mostly smart and intelligent people, one from Southern California and the other Las Vegas. Over the weekend they decided that they were going to get rid of the ice no matter what.

He decided that he was going to start by prying the ice out of the gutters with a screw driver. He jabbed and stabbed and pried and scrapped, all to no avail. Then she decided to pour hot water in the gutters to loosen the ice and the ice would just pop out. Instead it just went through all the holes he had poked in ALL the gutters. Yup, all of them.

She then decided to try to deal with the "ice at the front door" situation. He didn't want to use salt because salt would ruin all the things. Very well known fact that using salt one time ruins anything it touches instantly. Sand then? No, they didn't have sand. What they did have was kitty litter. Yup. That happened. Between the melting and refreezing they have quite a bit of frozen kitty litter leading up to the front door.  So much better than salt.

The kitty litter was starting to bother them (lol, can't imagine why) so she decided to melt the ice her way. Who needs to wait on the sun when you have a blow torch? So she went at it blow torch style.... and ended up just melting the welcome mat that was frozen in the ice. She used up all the propane and at the end of it all, had accomplished next to nothing except adding Welcome Mat to the list of things to buy along with new gutters.

I gave them my "I've lived in the snow and ice my whole life" advice, get some freaking salt, and wait for the sun to do it's thing. We do live in St. George, and the high today is in the 50's. Instead they decided to put up a sign on their front door "WARNING: ICE! Do not approach door!".

Silly St. Georgians.

Monday, December 16, 2013

On Failing and Facing Fears

I started rock climbing a couple months ago. I also started a little yoga challenge on instagram last week. These two things alone have started to create a lot of failure in my life.

Let me start by saying that I do not like to try new things. In fact I really hate new things. New experiences, new people, new places, new jobs, new whatever. I don't like the unknown. I don't like not knowing what I'm doing, feeling like a fool, and then failing.

As I'm getting older, and married someone who loves all the new things, I am slowly starting to accept this whole trying new things "thing". Slooooowly. Chad's really had to be patient with me.

Obviously failing is no fun. It's a blow to your ego, it just doesn't feel nice and it's even less fun when it's in public and you feel like everyone is watching. If I'm going to fail miserably please let me do it in private where no one can watch me cry.

Rock Climbing has really made me face all my failure right in the face. And scary? I was terrified when I started. Terrified. There were melt downs. Multiple. Some days are good and some days I make it 5 feet off the ground while a 10 year old girl zips past me on the route next to mine. Talk about some serious failure, in front of a bunch of people no less.

Then there's my yoga challenge. I take pictures of certain poses and post them to my instagram account. Again, no hiding there. Also a bit intimidating when there are people doing full on one handed handstand backbend thingys. See, I don't even know what any of these things are called. And to be honest, I still can't lean backwards with this back of mine, let alone bend backwards.

I'm a new climber and a new yogi. I am a beginner and don't know much. But I'm trying and I'm getting better and stronger. We all have to start somewhere and I am starting at the very beginning of these 2 awesome activities. And there's nothing wrong with that. Nothing wrong with trying hard, learning and yes, even failing along the way.

As Tony would say "Do your best and forget the rest". Wise words Tony, very wise indeed.

So I'm trying to be at peace with all of the failing currently happening in my life. I'm trying not to let fear hold me back from trying. I may not be able to do something perfect, but I can push pass the fear and try. I can do my best.

Friday, December 13, 2013

Recipe Love: Lettuce Wraps

I haven't posted any of our recipes on here as of late because, well, they've been less than thrilling. And my pictures of food are less than thrilling at best. But as I was going through my Pinterest recipes page I remembered this little gem from Iowa Girl Eats. It's so easy it's ridiculous, besides that, it's so delicious it's ridiculous. The next time your in the mood for some takeout, give these babies a try. They taste just like P.F. Chang, only better ;)

P.F. Chang Lettuce Wraps
(Iowa Girl Eats)
serves 2-3


1lb ground chicken breast
1/2 onion, minced
salt & pepper
2 garlic cloves, minced
1″ knob ginger, peeled & minced
2-1/2 Tablespoons soy sauce
1 Tablespoon + 1 teaspoon rice vinegar
1 Tablespoon sesame oil
1 Tablespoon peanut butter, smooth or chunky it doesn't matter
1/2 Tablespoon water
1/2 Tablespoon honey
2 teaspoons chili garlic sauce (or more if you like it hotter)
dash of pepper
3 green onions, chopped
1/2-8oz can sliced water chestnuts, drained & chopped
1/4 cup peanuts, chopped
10-12 large outer lettuce leaves, rinsed and patted dry


1. In a large skillet start cooking your onions until almost translucent. Add in the chicken, salt & pepper and cook until the chicken is almost done. Make sure your really break up the chicken well. Add in the garlic and ginger and cook until the chicky is done!

2. While all of that is cooking you can start on the sauce. Combine soy sauce, rice vinegar, oil, pb, water, honey, chili garlic sauce and pepper in a microwave safe bowl. Nuke it for 20 seconds and then stir until it's all combined and smooth. Toss this into the skillet and stir everything up.

3. Add in the green onions and water chestnuts to the skillet and cook for 1 or 2 more minutes, until the onions soften and the water chestnuts are heated through.

4. Serve! Serve these rolled on lettuce leaves with peanuts sprinkled on top. Get to rollin'!

My Notes:
  • From now on I will always double the sauce. A-L-W-A-Y-S. It's darn good.
  • To stretch this meal a little further we will often half the recipe for the two of us and add in some rice. This is where some extra sauce really comes in handy to flavor up that white rice. If you didn't make any extra we've just used soy sauce before and that's tasty too!

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Awkward and Awesome Thursday

  • The tip of my middle finger going numb from climbing and having it stay that way for days afterwards. It's almost back to normal....
  • Chad sending his iPhone through the wash cycle, yup, the whole cycle. He threw it in rice then attacked it with my hair dryer aaaaaaannnnd.... it turned on, and works, mostly. Thankfully we have geek sqaud and his new phone should be here soon. Phew.
  • Patients who wait in my waiting room for 20 minutes and then decide they have to go the bathroom right as I call them back. Really? You couldn't have done that in the 20 minutes you spent sitting there staring blankly ahead?
  • Driving in St George this week:


  • A pull up is currently within my reach. I've never been able to do a real one and it's becoming a real possibility. A chin up totes happened this weekend.
  • Cabin socks from Dicks. So Warm. So Amazing.
  • Our heated blanket. We cozy up in that and are out but 9pm. lol. The animals are also in love with it.
  • Today is Chad's last day of finals for the semester!
  • The Twelve Days of Christmas box that my parents sent us for December. So fun, we will be making sugar cookies and watching my Grandma win all the things on The Price is Right this weekend courtesy of them!

Monday, December 9, 2013

Winter Wonderland





On Friday we were feeling pretty cocky about our current situation. We live in St. George, land of the sun!!! We weren't going to let a little snow stop us from rock climbing all weekend like we had planned.  So Friday we went out, and while cold, we still were able to climb and have a good time all bundled up.

Then Saturday came. And the weather straight up laughed in our faces as it proceeded to snow ALL DAY LONG (8 inches of snow, third largest amount on record). After breakfast we realized it wasn't slowing down any time soon. I wanted to bundle up, stay indoors, and eat cookies until I passed out in my hot cocoa. Chad had other plans. And his plans ended up being pretty freaking great once he convinced me to peel my butt off the couch.

We went out to Snow Canyon State Park, and finally saw it in the Snow. It was gorgeous, all white and red. Rukia hasn't had a more fun time in her entire life, and we loved all the hiking, photography, snow ball throwing, and (Chad's homemade) hot cocoa drinking in the middle of a very snowy and deserted desert. It really was magical. And as long as this only happens once this winter, it will continue to stay magical.

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Awkward and Awesome Thursday

I will always regret not getting this.
  • Waking up to find your dog puked all over the couch.
  •  Being taught how to tie a bow. Apparently a Kneader's bow is super duper special.
  • The amount of dishes we let pile up over Thanksgiving. We may not have made a big dinner but we also didn't do dishes for the full 5 day break.
  • The amount of bananas and yogurt that I eat... together. Both of which I decided I hated in high school. I can't remember the number of times I said that bananas would kill you. You live and you learn #turningintomyparents
  • The amount of strength I have gained in my arms from climbing.
  • Christmas music.
  • Clumsy Ninja. It's basically a tamagotchi for your iphone and we love it a little too much.
  • The drug dealing neighbors have officially moved out!!! (I have yet to meet/see our new neighbors and I am terrified of the possibilities.)
  • Not driving in snow ;) 

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Wrap it up

First off I just want to say that The Walking Dead is taking years off my life. Years. That is all.

November really proved to be a fabulous month. After enduring the summer we were rewarded with awesome weather. Which made some of my goals pretty easy while messing up others ;)

1. Eat 4-5 fruits and veggies a day.

Super easy when I remembered to go grocery shopping. Salad for lunch along with yogurt and fruit, bam, done. Throw a veggie in for dinner and check it off the list.

2. Work out 30 minutes a day, everyday.

This was pretty easy as well due to the awesomeness of the weather. The cold I had for 2 weeks killed this goal for the entire 2 weeks, but when I was better I was back!

3. Keep the Nails Pretty

I am horrible at painting my nails. I'll paint them once and then let them slowly chip away until they've practically cleaned themselves. I was muuuuch better, and had some lovely looking nails the past 40 days. Now they are all clean (climbing this weekend destroyed them) and waiting for some more polish.

4. Dress up for 5 Date Nights

Alright, so this may have only happened twice.... maybe. In my defense, the weather. No need to dress up and.... walk around Target? Get dessert? Grocery shop maybe? We live in a very small town, with no dress up date options. We opted to dress down and hike and climb instead. As seen in my photo, I did not set a goal to clean or do laundry in a timely fashion. I'm not crazy.

It was a fun couple weeks trying to carry out some new goals and keep up with some old ones. I definitely started taking a little better care of myself and felt great doing so! Now bring on the cookies and hot cocoa!!!!! Ha, no but really.

Monday, December 2, 2013


Happy December everyone!

Our Turkey Day plans sort of fizzled out this year, so there sadly was no feasting or family for us. Don't worry though, we made out pretty good regardless.

We kicked off the long weekend with a bit of rappelling and bouldering at Pioneer Park on Wednesday afternoon. Man did that work my baby arms! I had a slight meltdown before rappelling but managed to get over it.

For Thanksgiving the next morning, we woke up early and headed out to Chuckawalla. We mountain biked in to Turtle Wall where we spent the whole day climbing and swinging around. Our Thanksgiving dinner was a picnic lunch complete with turkey sandwiches. Close enough! We were there until dark and we had thoroughly exhausted ourselves. All we wanted was to go home, get in a hot shower and eat cake.

Of course we didn't have anything to make a cake with so we headed out to the Pre Black Friday madness. We stopped at KMart quickly and realized they didn't have everything we needed, so we tried WalMart. Wow, that was a huge mistake. I dropped Chad off at the door, he went in and then immediately turned around and came out. Ha. So back to KMart we went. Since the deals didn't start until 7 we got to be first in line, thank goodness it was 6:50.

We continued to search high and low for cool whip to make a delicious ganache to cover our cake in to no avail. We lucked out and ended up having some in the freezer, a Thanksgiving miracle!

Friday we took a break from climbing and headed out to do a little shopping.... for clothes to climb in of course :)  We wore them the rest of the weekend but will be sure to wrap them up in time for Christmas!

Saturday we went back out to Green Valley. Chad worked on his climbing project and I finished up mine. I tired a beast of a climb, for me, and made it to the top and the very end. I wanted to give up, and would have a couple weeks ago, but not this weekend! We both worked h-a-r-d. Sunday I was beat but we went out to Moe's Valley so Chad could boulder. I hadn't been back in the valley before and it was gorgeous. We both had a good time and by the end Rukia, Chad and I were dead tired.

So that's how we wrapped up our long weekend: exhausted, dirty, sunburned and just a little bruised and bloody. And it was absolutely fantastic.