Love in the BOI: Sarah & Zac

Imagine only being able to communicate with each other in a beginner’s American sign language class. This is Sarah & Zac’s Love in the BOI story.

Zac & Sarah Warren

How did you all meet?

We were paired up during a beginner’s American sign language class in college and weren’t allowed to actually speak to each other those first few weeks – just awkwardly try to sign.

Describe your first date.

We met in Vancouver, WA, but one of the first things we did together as a couple was come to Boise to meet Zac’s mom and great-grandmother. It was a bit intimidating for me, but I ended up loving his family and we had such a good time exploring the city. We were married in the Idaho State Capitol and when we started our family we decided that Boise was the place we wanted to live. It was one of the best decisions we’ve ever made!

What advice do you have for those looking for love in Boise?

Our advice for people looking for love in Boise is that it comes when you least expect it. Pursue your dreams and passions and you are bound to run into that special someone.

What is your favorite place to go (or thing to do) together as a couple?

Our favorite thing to do as a couple is travel. We have a goal of taking our son to all 50 states and 7 continents! We also love camping at Redfish Lake.

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Zac & Sarah Warren (photo by Maggie Grace Photo)


Want to follow Zac and Sarah on their adventures? Make sure to give them a “follow” on their Instagram pages: Zac @zacwarren56 and Sarah @raisingsmiles. Photo credit to Maggie Grace at @maggiegracephoto.

sarah & zac


5 Ways I Dress Warm in the BOI Winter

Anytime I tell someone I’m originally from West Palm Beach, Florida I’m greeting with this automatic “oh dear, how are you holding up in the winter?” Great question.

Fortunately for me (or unfortunately, depending on your mindset), I lived in Portland, ME for 5 years. During that time, I gained firsthand experience of what it means to dress warmly. Such is a foreign concept for Floridians — unless that 3-day cold front we usually get in January.

Thankfully, lessons learned in Maine helped me transition to life during this BOI winter. Here are the 5 ways I dress warmly:

  • L.L. Bean Boots. For those who don’t know, the founders of L.L. Bean are from Maine. If you ever visit Freeport, make sure to snap a photo in front of the famous Bean Boot.With all my Mainer friends talking about their “beans,” I took note and decided to do some research for myself. I immediately became hooked after purchasing my 1st pair. Yes, I have more than one! The ones I wear for winter are the L.L. Bean Boots with the shearing-lining. They keep my feet extra warm, which is necessary for me! They can be a bit costly upfront, but it’s a lifetime guarantee with their products. I’ve had mine for over 6 years, and they still look good as new.


  • Wool Socks. Understandably, I had NO CLUE what wool socks were prior to moving to New England. Once winter came around, I overheard a classmate of mine talk about his wool socks and how they made him itch.  Say what? What are wool socks? Rather than asking and being embarrassed, I did the usually thing: Google search. I have no clue how I survived my first winter without them! I try to keep it colorful with these wool socks. 


  • Parka. I tried my  hardest to refrain from pulling out the parka here in Boise. I wanted to show that I can handle the cold temps. Then I was (re) introduced to 20 degrees F. That made me change my mind real quick. I have a few parkas, but my favorite is my North Face parka. 

Here’s a tip: if this is your first winter and costs of jackets are wearing you down, I recommend visiting the local thrift stores such as Idaho Youth Ranch and Goodwill. I received this tip when in New England because I was worried about costs, particularly since I never had to spend over $20 for any warm piece of clothing. At the thrift stores, I found everything from brand new jackets still with tags to gently used high-end jackets. My first winter in New England was manageable because of those 2nd hand L.L. Bean jackets.


  • Gloves. A few weeks ago, I made the terrible mistake of leaving my gloves at home when I volunteered at the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl. Boy were my hands freezing! Moving forward, I now I have 2 pairs — one I keep in my jacket pocket. My go-to gloves are those with a buckle closure and those which are  touchscreen-friendly.  Prior to these touchscreen-friendly gloves, it was annoying to have to remove my gloves to answer my call or text.


  • My winter hats. I have my fair share of winter hats. Some hats are more appropriate to wear when my hair is straightened; others times I wear hats made to fit my entire head of curls. My when-my-hair-is-straight winter hat is the standard beanie. It’s comfortable, keeps my head warm, and it compliments my face. Now, when my hair is too curly, the only hats that can handle it is the ski caps with a visor. I wear this all the time — even at home! Makes me feel warm and toasty.


With what appears as this record-breaking winter for snow, I’m glad I’m equipped to stay warm. What are some of your must-have winter items?