Sarah + Tim

a canadian, american and calico living in perfect harmony

Identity Theft Crisis Averted December 29, 2008

I’m sure we all know someone who’s been a victim of identity theft, but it would never happen to us, right?  One of the craziest stories I’ve heard is the woman who got a bill for a $40,000 foot amputation who still had both feet intact.  According to Readers Digest, with the rising cost of medical insurance, medical identity theft is a hot commodity.  So far, one third of the US population has been affected by identity theft.  This month, it happened to me.

itunesWe received a call one Sunday morning recently saying there has been a series of charges from iTunes on our American Express for the last several months, totally nearly $300!  I was wondering how the balance on a card I never used crept up so high…  Since I had changed over to paperless billing (bad idea), I never caught it.  I disputed the charges and since it was within the 90 day grace period, the money will be reimbursed on my next statement.  Phew!

Thankfully, I felt a lot better knowing that we have incredible identity theft restoration services through Pre-Paid Legal Services and Kroll.  Through the Identity Theft Shield, if our identity is ever compromised, instead of fixing it yourself, they take the wheel and put our identity back together again.  If this issue with iTunes hadn’t been solved so easily, this would have been our next offense.

So be wise!  In order to avoid becoming a victim of identity theft, be sure to keep an eye on your statements, shred and avoid purchasing online from unfamiliar websites.  Since our information is in many databases (school records, past jobs, government agencies) that can’t be avoided, it is smart to research and invest in identity theft restoration services to have the professionals watch your back, too.  Spread the word!

On a lighter note…  In the words of Dwight K. Shrute, identity theft is no laughing matter.  Except sometimes.


Thanks, Tina!


Photos by Justin Hackworth Photography

Here’s some great shots from Tim and I’s recent photo shoot with Justin Hackworth Photography.  We meandered downtown Provo and had a great time.  Justin was totally willing to work with our zany ideas (he appreciated that we wanted to take pictures at sushi instead of the usual orchard request).  Even tho the photos were taken a week into December, even got some shots back in time for Christmas.  Enjoy!



Stranded in Portland on Christmas Eve December 24, 2008

It’s Christmas Eve and instead of being in roasting chestnuts on an open fire with the Wards in Vancouver, we are at a Howard Johnson hotel in Portland.  Yep.  Thanks to three feet of snow in Vancouver, we joined the ranks of troubled travelers as our connecting flight from Portland to Vancouver was canceled at the last minute, leaving us stranded in Portland on Christmas Eve.  After reaming out the poor customer service agents at the counter, we explored our options.

  1. Fly out on the next flight to Vancouver at 10am Christmas morning
  2. Take a flight to Seattle at 9pm Christmas Eve
  3. Cancel the flight and drive six (or eight or ten or twelve, weather pending) hours to Vancouver

We opted with the first.  Thankfully Air Canada was able to get us on a 6am flight to Vancouver first thing tomorrow.

As we were on the phone working out the details for a hotel room, the thought crossed my mind – what if there aren’t any rooms for us to stay in?  As frightening a thought as it was, immediately I thought of Mary and Joseph, finding no room in the inn and settling for the humble stable instead on that first Christmas night.  We were not the first with frustrated travel agendas.  This certainly put things into perspective for us.

So whereever you are, Merry Christmas.  We hope you made it home for the holidays.

PS: word to the wise – always fly direct, especially on Christmas Eve


I shot jack bauer’s gun December 20, 2008

jack-bauers-gunLast week, I went shooting for the first time.  It was CRAZY!  Women of Caliber is a local company that teaches self defense and firearm training for women, by women.  It’s a very cool, empowering concept.  I learned how to handle a gun, load it, check for jams, proper stance and to shoot. And not just any gun – a Glock 9mm.  That’s right.  Jack Bauer’s gun.

(Note:  I stand corrected.  Jack Bauer actually shoots a HK USP 9mm)

So get this – the first time I shot, I got a bullseye!  And in case you don’t believe me, here’s proof!


Kristen and I learned a concept called double tapping which is where you shoot consecutively.  Apparently it’s utilized by law enforcement a lot, since you’re more likely to hit your target the second time.


We also got to unload a whole mag at the end.  By this point I felt shaky, so we only loaded 6 of the 8 shots.  But when I got to the end of my round, I wanted more.  Crazy!


Bravado aside, Kellene said I looked like I was about to cry before I took my first shot.  A gun is such a powerful thing, it really freaked me out (says the anti-gun Canadian…).  Apparently I would lean away from it whenever I picked it up, my internal dialogue plain as the nose on my face.  The hardest thing for me was bracing for the kickback.  The first shot I made, I hadn’t braced my flimsy wrists, so the bullet casing hit me in the face, freaking me out.  Also, the sound a gun makes was way louder than I expected it to be.  You feel it.


On the way back, the girls were thrilled to see Tim’s reaction.  In fact, we even documented it!  Aren’t his new glasses awesome?  Let’s hear it for supportive husbands!



Family Photos December 7, 2008

Filed under: family — Sarah @ 5:40 pm
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Tomorrow afternoon, Tim and I will have our family photos taken by Justin Hackworth Photography.  We are stoked!  It’s the first time since our wedding three years ago that we had our picture professionally (& officially) taken.  Unofficially, Tim snuck in on a few shots from a photo shoot Justin and I did in the spring, which is how this photo below came to be.

Lots has happened since 2005.  Lots of hair cuts.  Lots of change.  Lots of growth.  It’s about time!  Photos to come…



New Young Women’s Value – Virtue

new-young-women-value-virtueThe First Presidency of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints recently announced a new value to the Young Women’s theme – virtue.  For the official letter dated November 28, 2008, click here.

From the official church website, ‘”Virtue is a pattern of thought and behavior based on high moral standards. It encompasses chastity and moral purity.” The time has come for the young women of the Church to lead the world in a return to virtue. This is the time to be pure and to qualify for the guidance of the Holy Ghost.’

The Young Women’s theme is recited by Latter-day Saint girls aged 12-18 each Sunday across the world.  Here is the updated version:

“We are daughters of our Heavenly Father who loves us, and we love Him.  We will stand as witnesses of God, at all times, and in all things, and in all places, as we strive to live the Young Women Values, which are:

Divine Nature
Individual Worth
Choice and Accountability
Good Works
Integrity and

We believe as we come to accept and act upon these values, we will be prepared to strengthen home and family, make and keep sacred covenants, receive the ordinances of the temple and enjoy the blessings of exaltation.”

For the official press release, visit