Wednesday, December 31, 2008

The New Year

Here is my year in review:

Best Things 2008:
1. Getting married to Spencer Evans
2. Getting engaged in San Francisco
3. Two weeks in Hawaii
4. Losing my first grown-up job - not a blessing in disguise, just a straight-up blessing
5. Starting my own business

Not So Amazing Things 2008:
1. Some of the pre-wedding issues/stress with: the dress, the candy scam, the bankrupt honeymoon airline, only receiving 2/3 of the invitations we ordered, etc. (don't worry, it all worked out beautifully in the end!)
2. Michael Scott as a boss, continued (but only for 7.5 months!)
3. Not getting selected once again, for the Moab Half Marathon
4. A car accident (I nearly forgot about this one)

Places I visited in 2008:
1. San Diego, CA
2. San Francisco, CA
3. Maui, HI
4. Kauai, HI
5. St. George, UT

Realizations of 2008:
1. Getting married is a pretty natural adjustment - much more so than I anticipated
2. Being your own boss rocks! You call your own snow days, sick days, vacation days, hours, pay rate, and you get to do something you love! Downside: no Christmas bonus, medical benefits, or paid vacation (small price to pay)
3. A 21 mile commute to Park City is much better than a 12 mile commute to Midvale - prettier, fewer annoying drivers, zero stop-and-go, and just as fast
4. If something has been in a box for a year or more, it's ok to let it go

Concerts I attended in 2008:
1. Coldplay, Salt Lake City, UT
2. Ben Folds, Magna, UT
(only two? I must be getting old!)

Things I checked off my list in 2008:
1. Marry someone I'm crazy about (who's also crazy about me, naturally)
2. Stay debt-free
3. See Ben Folds rock out in person
4. Get a job I love

-Death Cab For Cutie-

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

for people and things that went before

I really love this time of year, because I love thinking about new goals and a new year is a beauty of a fresh start. There are a lot of goals and projects I'm thinking about for 2009... Here's some of what's been on my mind:

  • finish the quilt I started in 2007 (just needs batting and backing...)
  • take an international trip with Spencer (we're thinking SE Asia or SE Europe)
  • make a beautiful photo book of wedding events
  • go through overwhelming book collection and sell lots
  • consume less: buy nothing for the house or myself for as long as I can hold out (I need another stint to Brazil to help me remember how little we really need)
  • finish a few projects around the house (touch up painting, hang art/photos)
  • find a half-marathon to run that doesn't have a lottery...
  • prepare and plan meals more thoroughly to waste less food
  • expand and refine the sugarhouse ink product line; invest time and money wisely to grow the business
  • find meaningful ways to serve and give and share with humanity to feel more real
  • learn to drive stick shift
  • stay on top of projects and learn to work more quickly, efficiently, and flawlessly
  • get off of at least 80% of the email lists I'm on to simplify my life (goodbye macy's, j.crew, old navy, gap, jo-ann's, amazon... hopefully I won't see you again until I'm actually ready to buy something)

Saturday, December 06, 2008

Part of Your History #3

I don't know how this didn't ever show up on my blog. Really. Two years ago was all about weekend trips to interesting places, Thanksgiving in a hostel in Athens, Halloween in our flat in Brussels, my birthday celebrated with a Bratwurst in Salzburg, all-night bus trips to the Alps, trains and planes to anywhere we could get to quickly enough to be back for work on Monday morning, and apparently... dancing everywhere we went.

Dancing Through Europe from Sarah Evans on Vimeo.

Monday, December 01, 2008

Cold Turkey

I realize I'm a little late with the Thanksgiving post (hence the cold turkey). We managed to have a splendid Thanksgiving celebration with both of our families. Spencer's brother and his family came to Utah and we had dinner at Spencer's parents' house, who were also kind enough to invite my parents to the feast.

Spencer often comments that his family isn't too big on tradition or ceremony, but a few days before Thanksgiving it came out that his family has one of the coolest Thanksgiving traditions around: every year before the feast they go BOWLING! This is definitely one that will be carried on...
-John Lennon-

Monday, November 24, 2008

The Prophet's Song

Lots of updates coming sometime when I have time. For now, this video was in my inbox this morning and I thought it was worth sharing.


Sunday, November 09, 2008

Be Kind to Me

You may or may not have heard of the blog Rocks In My Dryer, written by super saavy mother of four and Oklahoma resident, Shannon. It's one of *the* mom blogs for great ideas, interesting info, and a good laugh.
So you can imagine my reaction when I found out she wanted to write about my new business venture! Right now she's hosting a giveaway for Sugarhouse Ink gift cards on her blog and did a sweet little writeup about it too. Yay for good people on the internet!

-Michael Hurley-

Friday, November 07, 2008

Today's The Day

After months on the very fruitless and frustrating job hunt (and with national unemployment at 6.5% now!!!) I have been lucky enough to fall into a situation that is just about perfect.

Spencer's best friend has a very good reputation in the real estate community in Park City. He is busy starting his own business, so when Keller Williams approached him about helping them out with their marketing, he thought of me. Yay for good friends! We hammered out pricing and a proposal last week and today found out that it has been approved.

So here's the deal: I will essentially be a freelancer with office space at Keller Williams' office in Park City. Since they don't have any in-house marketing, I will be their "preferred vendor" for all things marketing - from photo shoots of new (mansion) listings, to designing brochures, ads, and websites. I have set my own rates, my own hours, can work from home when necessary, and have a solid potential client base of over 100 agents. I will not be on anyone's clock, so really I can work on whatever I want, which is great because I also have a little business I need to give some attention to on a regular basis. Basically it's ideal. Or at least it sounds like it will be.

I'm really excited!

-Aimee Mann-

Pardon Me

My blog will be undergoing some changes over the next week or so. Starting today. I have another blog that some of you know about called sarah style. Today I imported all of the posts from that blog (so if you're using a reader you probably were dozens of new posts here). This also means you might see new kinds of posts here (like the ones I did on sarah style). I'm also thinking about switching the url of this blog... we'll see. Just thought I'd let you know what's up. Stay tuned.


Wednesday, November 05, 2008

All You Need is Love

Late on Sunday night, just weeks after his 90th birthday, my Grandpa Glen passed away. He had been declining for some time, and more aggressively in the last few weeks so despite being a time of loss there is a sense of relief as well. One of my favorite stories about my Grandpa Glen happened long before I (or my dad, for that matter) ever came along. (my dad is the cute little boy in the photo)

Apparently, as a young man my grandpa was quite the jokester. He worked on the railroad for a good portion of his life, and as a teenager my grandma and some of her girl friends liked to hang out at a little cafe near the tracks. They would flirt and joke over milkshakes, but there was never any expression or declaration of affection. I'm not sure how long my grandparents knew each other, but everything changed on the night of a high school dance. My grandma was getting ready for the dance and waiting for her date to pick her up when my grandpa showed up and told her she wasn't going to the dance because she was engaged! To HIM! And he wasn't joking! As my grandma tells it, her date showed up and she bashfully greeted him at the door to tell him she couldn't go because she had gotten engaged that afternoon. Despite having quite a sense of humor, at this point he was very serious and they were married a short time later. Although I'm not sure how I would react to my grandpa's tactics, it makes me smile to think of this scene playing out in real life. In my family. Little snippets from my grandpa's life seem often to happily resemble "It's a Wonderful Life."
-The Beatles-

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Political Scientist

For whatever reason, I've avoided waxing political on this blog. Maybe it's because I know it would make passionate rivals out of some of my friends. But now I've got something to say. Not necessarily what I believe politically, only that I am one step from disgusted with who our country has pushed to the top as our choices for our next leader. Unfortunately, most of my lifetime has featured less than admirable presidents of the country I am proud to call home. I have to look to the history books to see the wisdom, passion, inspired leadership, and integrity that seem to allude politicians today.

But (this brings me to my second point), regardless of how nauseated you might be this election year, I do believe that everyone should educate themselves and prepare to cast a ballot. People have fought for our freedoms and democracy and I think the one of the best ways to ensure preserving those rights is by being active citizens. If nothing else, voting buys you the right to complain.

That's all.

-Ryan Adams-

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Live and Learn

I've been thinking about some of the things I've learned in the last three months whilst being unemployed. (I know! Three months! I can't believe it either)

1. Sometimes you're just meant to be unemployed.
2. You can learn more about business, the internet, adobe CS3, and marketing on your own than you can while being employed as a marketing manager. Really, who knew?
3. Don't carry a product unless you know you can produce it.
4. There are many, many blessings in disguise in our lives.
5. Ben Folds is good background for just about anything.
6. I have some incredible people in my life who have been tremendously supportive of my crazy ideas and efforts. I'm really thankful for them.

-The Cardigans-

Friday, October 10, 2008

Part of Your History #2

I don't know if this really qualifies as a "part of your history" post, but I'm going to call it one. This is dedicated to Megan.

Five Things

10 years ago I
1. Bought a car with my sister for less than I paid for my crown today
2. Edited the high school yearbook
3. Looked forward to Thursday nights to watch Seinfeld and ER consistently
4. Ran my first 5K
5. Got an SLR and started taking lots of photos

Five things on todays to-do list:
1. Recover from the 5 shots of novacaine required this morning at the dentist
2. Compile a good list of advertising possibilities for my new business
3. Relax
4. Call people back to schedule job interviews
5. Get outside and breathe

Five Snacks I enjoy:
1. Whole wheat bagel w/veggie cream cheese
2. Pears
3. Cereal
4. Quesadillas
5. Orange Julius

Five Places I have lived:
1. Clifton, VA
2. Provo/SLC, UT
3. New York, NY
4. Brussels, BE
5. Portland/Corvallis, OR

Five Jobs I have had:
1. Marketing Intern at Nike
2. Marketing Manager at ezGear
3. Associate at Old Navy (awful)
4. Free slice cutter at Great Harvest
5. Owner of Sugarhouse Ink!

Five Pet Peeves:
1. The local accent -- "sell" instead of "sale", etc.
2. Blogs with music
3. Poor grammar (though I know I have it too sometimes...)
4. Utah drivers
5. Friend requests from people I don't know on facebook

Five things that bring me joy:
1. Family - husband, parents, siblings, nieces+nephews, in-laws
2. Pretty days
3. Autumn
4. Five Guys
5. Really nice people

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

The Launch

Well, this is it - the day we've all been waiting for. Or more accurately, the day I've been waiting for! After tons of working, planning, designing and learning, my business is finally online. Sugarhouse Ink is ready for your viewing pleasure!
I do birth announcements, graduation announcements, wedding invitations, holiday cards, and just about everything else you can think of in the invitation/announcement category. Feel free to spread the word, make a link in your sidebar, blog about it, add the url to your email signature, etc. ;)

No, but really, I'd be honored if you'd check it out at and don't be afraid to pass it on to anyone else who might find it useful.
Oh! And before I forget: as a celebration of opening our doors online we have a huge election-inspired promotion: 50 Deals for 50 States. Be the first to order from your state and save 50%! Believe me, you probably won't see a discount like that again.

Wednesday, October 01, 2008

Sweet Illusions

Remember the delish mint brownies at BYU creameries and sugar n spice in the Cougar Eat? In the last alumni email they had a link to the recipe! Sweet! Now I don't have to go all the way to Provo for my fix. Here it is:

PREP AND COOK: 90 min. COOL: 1 hr.

1 c. margarine
1/2 c. cocoa
2 Tbsp. honey
4 eggs
2 c. sugar
1 3/4 c. flour
1/2 Tbsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1 c. chopped walnuts
12 oz. chocolate icing (Use your own icing recipe or purchase some chocolate frosting. You can also search the Internet for chocolate icing recipes.)


5 Tbsp. margarine
dash of salt
3 Tbsp. milk
1 Tbsp. light corn syrup
2 1/3 c. powdered sugar
1/2 tsp. mint extract
1-2 drops green food coloring

1. Melt margarine and mix in cocoa. Allow to cool. Add honey, eggs, sugar, flour, baking powder, and salt. Mix well. Add nuts. Pour batter into a greased 9-by-13 baking pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 25 minutes. Cool.

2. Prepare mint icing: Soften margarine. Add salt, corn syrup, and powdered sugar. Beat until smooth and fluffy. Add mint extract and food coloring. Mix. Add milk gradually until the consistency is a little thinner than cake frosting.

3. Spread mint icing over brownies. Place brownies in the freezer for a short time to stiffen the icing. Remove from the freezer and carefully add a layer of chocolate icing.

-Ryan Adams-

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

The Bank and Trust

I saw this somewhere else and thought it interesting/relevant... If only we had the leadership today of the days when our country was still in it's infancy. One such visionary (TJ, to be exact) said:
“If the American people ever let a private bank and the corporations that grow up around them control our money supply, first by inflation and then by deflation, they will deprive it’s citizens of their property until one day their children will wake up homeless on the continent their fathers’ conquered.”
Perhaps the "perilous times" we've heard so much about are finally here.

-The Elected-

Monday, September 29, 2008

You Don't Know Me

g-chat message from Anna this morning: "You will love this" and a link to this amazingness:

Ben and Regina together?! How could I not love it? Thanks Anna. :)

-Ben Folds-

Just a Dream

Ever had a dream related to blogging? I think last night was my first. A group of girls from BYU (didn't recognize any faces) and I decided to organize a pr/advertising conference around the influence of blogging in those arenas... so naturally we had as our host none other than Design Mom. We all flew to New York and had a big sleepover at her very cool house (though it was quite different from the photos I've seen on her blog). The last thing I remember was standing in the dark and the rain in Central Park trying to get Spencer's camera to work so I could take a photo of us all. Strange sometimes, these dreams of mine.

-Gabe Dixon Band-

Friday, September 26, 2008

Cinder and Smoke

Today I realized, once again, just how much I hate ironing. Really, I do. I got out the iron for the first time since I've been married for the sole purpose of looking decent at my interview with these people. But really, it just spit dirty water everywhere and made me regret not using my favorite anti-wrinkle solution: the dryer. Plus, I really only have one "interview outfit" and I used it once with them already. Whenever the chance to go for round two comes up, it kind of puts me in a panic, but only because of the lack of suitable business wear to be found in my closet.

That's all. Oh, and I have an interview with them on Monday. Does that make me a total traitor?

-Iron & Wine-

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Better Way

I don't know if you've downloaded the new iTunes or used the new Genius feature, but I think it's fantastic.-Ben Harper-

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Part of Your History #1

I've wanted to do this for a long time. I think it's interesting every once in a while, to take a look back and see where you've been and who you've been. So every once in a while (meaning I have no idea how often) I'll do a "part of your history" feature where I indulgently take a look back, with kind of an "on this day in history" approach.

Four years ago today, I arrived back in the states after my eighteen month mission in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. My last day in the field was the 21st, transfers were on the 22nd, we boarded the plane on the 23rd, and arrived at home on the 24th. It was much too drawn out for me and just plain hard. An excerpt from my journal explains my feelings pretty accurately:

We had a thirteen hour flight through the middle of the night, and I think I probably slept for about 20 minutes. Finally we landed in Dulles and as I stepped onto the people mover, I felt that wet, familiar Virginia air. We reached customs and someone came over the loudspeaker and said, "Citizens of the United States of America, welcome home." Immediately I felt the tears pooling in my eyes - such a confusing emotion. Although I knew I was home and that I was American, I felt like a foreigner stepping onto familiar, but changed soil. Perhaps those changes were only within myself, but they were significant enough to make me feel as a stranger in a new world.

Thankfully much has changed and I feel pretty comfortable in my country again.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Smile Like You Mean It

Since we are still newish in our ward and neighborhood, we are still constantly meeting new people and introducing ourselves. Naturally, one of the first questions people ask is, "so, are you working, or in school?" (ie you have no children, what are you doing with your life?) I have come to really hate this question and tried to come up with interesting ways of saying "I'm unemployed" without actually saying it. I've used, "well I've worked in marketing for a few years and I'm looking for a new gig" and "I'm kind of in between jobs right now" but it always leaves me feeling like kind of a loser.

Yesterday I sat next to someone in RS that I'd never sat by before. Of course, the conversation came to the question and I looked at her and just said, "I'm a freelance designer." I don't know how much I actually qualify (I have a website, right?) but that didn't really matter. It felt good to say it.

-The Killers-

Monday, September 22, 2008

Invisible Ink

For various reasons, I got way behind on blogging this summer. I've been wanting to update, and finally got around to it. I back-dated the posts to keep them organized for my own sanity... they won't show up at the top of the blog, but if you're interested just check the archives from July on up to September.

-Aimee Mann-

Sunday, September 21, 2008


Spencer worked really hard all week so he could just work from home on part of Friday and then relax for the rest of the day. He spontaneously suggested that we go to the spiral jetty (something I've wanted to do for a long time) so we hopped in the car and drove up. 90 miles of highway + 15 miles of dirt road + .5 miles of walking = the spiral jetty. It's very remote which made me happy. I kind of hate when cool things like that are destroyed by easy accessibility and football field sized parking lots.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

I Will Follow

Blogger's Follower feature is finally out of beta. Join the club on my sidebar. -->

In other news: I'm interviewing for new jobs here and here, the Sugarhouse Ink website is coming along (don't worry, I'll definitely post when it's up and running!), and my arms are missing the sweet little bundle they held every day for the past week.-U2-

Monday, September 15, 2008

Late Morning Lullabye

Yesterday was little miss Olivia's blessing at church. She looked so pretty in her long white blessing dress (although it seemed to be quite itchy). Lots of family came to the blessing and the open house afterward at my parents' house. It was a pretty big event for such a little girl! Spencer and I took turns holding her most of the evening (what can I say? we have the magic touch) which was pure delight. Here are a few photos from the big day.
(Olivia and her great-grandma Miriam)
(the Payne family)

(Olivia loves her uncle Spencer)
(right after they took off the itchy dress and she was down to her tights)
(Mollie setting out the spread for the big event)

-Brandi Carlile-

Sunday, September 07, 2008

Beautiful Stranger

The New York Times picked up the story about Nie Nie and her family. Check it out here. I guess this whole experience has gone to contradict some of my feelings about technology driving people into less intimate and involved relationships. It's been marvelous to see the blogging community come together and rally around this family.


Saturday, September 06, 2008

Never Leave Lonely Alone

Spencer and I have been talking for a while about possibilities for a big adventure next summer. Some of the options we're considering:

-A guided rafting/camping trip through Cataract Canyon
-Visiting Spencer's cousin in Alaska (who happens to be a pilot) and possibly backpack around the Denali
-Take a month off from life and do an overland Europe to Asia trip possibly hitting -among other countries- Italy, Greece, Turkey, India and China
-Bike the Oregon Coast (take two...)

It would be great to be able to do them all, but we are saving our pennies in hopes of doing one. What's your vote?

Image via
-Ben Harper-

Thursday, September 04, 2008

One Fine Wire

On Labor day Spencer and I went to Broadway Cinema downtown to see Man on Wire. It's a fantastic documentary about a man who rigged a wire between the two world trade center towers and walked it. How did I never hear about this happening? Anyway, I really think you should find out where it's playing and go see it.

-Colbie Callait-

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Nie Nie Auction

I'm participating in an auction to raise money for the Nie Nie Recovery Fund. Read more about it and bid on the auction at

Friday, August 29, 2008

Stay Out of Trouble

Right after we returned from California we headed to the mountains. Spencer took me up Millcreek Canyon and we blazed a trail straight up the side of the mountain. That was fun for about the first hour... and then the burrs and the bees and blisters and the bushes up to my shoulders became a little less enchanting. But by that time we had almost reached the Desolation Trail where we were hovering at the crest of Millcreek and Big Cottonwood Canyons and had steller views of both. It was worth it. It was trails the rest of the way, including a stop at Dog Lake.-Kings of Convenience-

Thursday, August 28, 2008

If You're Gonna Leave

Two weeks before Mollie and Sam's trek across the US to move to Maryland, I went out for one last San Diego visit. Among other things, we sang Come, Come Ye Saints (the boys current favorite song) over and over, played in the sprinklers, went to the beach, read lots of books, finished the design of Olivia's birth announcement, and took a trip to the San Diego Model Train museum in Balboa park.
(sweet new baby feet)
(waiting for the model train to come)
(sprinkler time!)

-Emerson Hart-

Wednesday, August 20, 2008


Many of you may know that I've been thinking about starting my own little business. Well I'm just about ready to launch it in two parts: SE|design (this site is a work in progress) for stuff a business might need like brochures, catalogs, packaging and such, and Sugarhouse Ink for more personal needs like announcements, invitations, photo cards, etc. I'm very excited about it and think it could really go somewhere. But I need your help.

Right now all of my birth announcement samples have one of 3 baby photos in them, wedding announcements only have photos of me and Spencer, holiday cards only have photos I have taken of my sister's family.... you get the idea. Basically I need some good images of new babies, couples, families, and graduates so all of my samples don't look the same. If you could help a sista out, please send your photos to:{at} Thanks a bunch! I'll let you know when I launch!

-The Beatles-

Sunday, August 17, 2008

We'll Meet Along the Way

My dad has been wanting to go on a hike all summer, so we finally set aside a Saturday to go up to Sundance and hike Stewart Falls. On the way up he told us about when he was skiing at Sundance as a college kid and took out some poor Australian girl on the slopes. He ended up getting her number after the crash and took her out to dinner or something. It's wild to think of your parents being young and unmarried and trying to date someone other than your other parent. Anyway, we had a good time in the mountains and I think my dad had his fill - he was very done with nature by the time we finished the hike.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

These Lights Are Meaningful

Last night we got home from running a few errands and the sky was beautiful. The light was so dramatic and the clouds were just too much, so Spencer got out of the car, grabbed his camera, and ran over to a nearby street to capture these beauties.

Thursday, August 07, 2008

Walking Out of Stride

Last night the natives were restless (ie we both needed to get out for a while) and it was a beautiful evening, so we decided to hike the Living Room. It's nice to have fun hikes so close that you can be from your doorstep to the trailhead in about ten minutes. Last time we hiked here was in May of last year... one of our first dates.
-Badly Drawn Boy-

Tuesday, August 05, 2008

Baby Sister

Our family has a new little bundle of love! Olivia Grace Payne (of House of Payne, San Diego Edition) made her grand entrance yesterday at six am.She's bringing the niece+nephew count up to seventeen for Spencer and me! Welcome, baby girl -- we love you already!

-Damien Rice-

Friday, August 01, 2008


On certain days, for no particular reason, I really miss Belgium.-Radiohead-

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Woke Up New

Yesterday Spencer and I went camping at Ledgefork in the lower Unitas. Thankfully I lost my job on the 11th, so I didn't have to worry about getting work off early in order to enjoy the trip! We left early in the afternoon, set up camp, went on a hike and enjoyed the beautiful, quiet (except for the nearby scout camp), natural setting. I love short camping trips - enough time to enjoy and appreciate the outdoors, eat some good, greasy, fire-cooked food, and become extra grateful for the comfort of my bed upon returning home. :)
-The Mountain Goats-
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