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Six Months Ago

I was in the living room of my high school best friend, spending time with my Maid of Honor and her mother. It was late, rainy, and my feet were tired from breaking in my wedding shoes. The rehearsal dinner was filling, the coffee and dessert afterward was the perfect “Welcome Home” to Portland.

Six months ago was my last day under my maiden name, my last day before tying myself to my best friend for forever. I was nervous, excited and hopeful. We spent the whole night talking about you and I.

Nineteen months ago, we met. When I met you, I wasn’t planning to fall in love. I wasn’t even looking for a new best friend, but you changed all that. The attraction was electric and unexpected.

Here we are now with our future at our feet. Six months and yet it feels like an eternity. I can’t remember a time when I didn’t love you. There’s not a single place on this Earth other than in your arms that I would rather be. Families blended, friends were made and two lives have been joined. You make me want to be better, for myself and for you. Your voice can light up my whole heart and soul with one word. You are my peace of mind when I’m caught in a storm. You really are the half of me that is better.

We’re not perfect, and we both make mistakes. Sometimes I say the wrong thing, and sometimes you just don’t understand. But we’re silly, and always each others’ best friend. We continue to grow together and discover new things about one another. I can’t imagine a life without you and soon, these six months will be a year, and then that year will turn into twenty. I don’t know where we’ll end up or how life will go, but I’ll be by your side and you’ll be at mine.

Six months ago,

my life changed forever, for the better.

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Uncategorized

Something Old, Something New

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…you know how the rest of it goes.

A woman’s wedding is supposed to be the peak of her entire life. She finally found someone who wants to spend forever with her and her parents want to shell out the equivalent to a down payment on a house to make sure everyone and their brother knows about it. What’s the big deal? Aren’t a cute sundress and the courthouse all you really need to start the rest of your life with another human being? Apparently not. 

(This article is out of humor, and I appreciate every last detail my parents planned and paid for. They gave Jason and I a night that we will remember for the rest of our lives and we are eternally grateful. Love you guys.)

 

I mentioned some of these things before in my “What I’ve Learned After Getting Engaged” article, but after having experience them, I felt it necessary to repeat a few of them, and add in a few other wedding-tidbits.

Hair and Makeup Appointments = HASSLE 

I had a friend of my from high school do my bridal hair (shoutout to Whitney Nhor if you’re reading this girl, you rock) and my Maid of Honor came with me to get her’s done by another lady at the salon. First of all, I didn’t even know how I wanted my hair like a week before the wedding. I made my appointment five days prior to the big day and everyone kept calling me crazy. Originally, I wasn’t even going to pay someone to do it for me! Anyway… So I’ve mentioned before that I am a 90-year-old woman when it comes to Pinterest, right? Jason’s best friend Natalie (thankfully) showed me some of the ins and outs so I could find some good ideas that wouldn’t make me look like I was going to the 2002 Junior Prom. We decided on:

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And obviously, we got to the salon and my hair was not cooperating with the idea of a waterfall braid. I didn’t mind switching up the plan to make sure we had enough time, but Whitney was determined. My stubborn locks finally let her weave magic onto my head and it turned out GAW-JUSSSSS. Meanwhile, Trish (MOH) was sitting in the chair next to me and this old, Eastern-European woman was giving her an updo fit for the Queen of England—and I don’t mean expensive and elegant, I mean old looking and too put-together. My beautiful best friend had just been turned into a poodle. We all just laughed at the situation and she just accepted that it would fall out and look more natural over the course of the morning. Let’s back track a little bit—I forgot clothes for that morning. I stayed over at Trisha’s house after the rehearsal dinner and in my brain, I was wearing my wedding dress the next day so obviously I didn’t need clothes. Except for the 7 hours prior to the wedding that I had to be in public! She is about five inches shorter than me and a few sizes smaller, in clothes and shoes. We ended up finding a pair of yoga pants and a jacket (that I wore without a shirt under it) and a pair of flip flops that were 2 sizes too small. Fast forward back to the salon—Trisha’s hair was finished and poor Whitney was still trying to tame my unruly hair into a Pinterest-perfect “do”. I couldn’t bear to wear those sandals any longer so Trish sprinted to Old Navy and bought me a plain, white pair of their classic flip flops (my mom pointed out that this will be an awesome memory and I HAVE to keep them, so I did).

Thanks to my insane head of hair, we were a little behind schedule getting to Nordstrom’s for my makeup appointment with MAC. Of course, traffic had to be all backed up on the day of my wedding. I rush into the store and get a seat; where I wait for over half an hour before a drop of product even touches my face. The girl comes back and covers me in primer and then disappears, this time for nearly 20 minutes! WOMAN DO YOU UNDERSTAND I HAVE A WEDDING TO GET TO AND IT HAPPENS TO BE MINE?! I understand it was two days before Christmas but damn it, I had an appointment and kind of wanted to feel important. After whatever shenanigans she was getting into, she finally comes back and I show her what I had in mind:

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So her nimble little hands get to work and less than 20 minutes later she hands me a mirror and I see this:

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All right, I can dig it.

Before I know it, both of my soon-to-be sister in laws show up and are waiting on me. Little did we know, traffic was getting worse by the minute and we were still 10 miles away. We finally get to the venue (only 10 minutes late, no biggie) and my mom and grandma were awaiting us in the Bridal Suite with champagne. Blah blah blah, getting into my dress and shoes and jewelry and veil and that entire snow queen garb. The best part, however, was my grandma giving my great grandmother’s blue floral handkerchief to pin around the stem of my bouquet, it was beautiful.

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The preparation was stressful, the big day was exhausting, the reception was beautiful and full of my favorite people, but all I can say is that we were both happy for it to all be over and get the chance to enjoy some time at home together as husband and wife (still getting used to using those words). Take it from me when I tell you that nothing wedding-wise will ever turn out as planned but it won’t matter because the most important thing is that you’re creating a new lifetime with the coolest person in the world—and that’s that.

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Life

Mutti, Madre, Mère

We had to translate a sentence into English this morning on our quiz, “Mother’s Day is a special day and on it, sons present their mothers with a gift”—which got me thinking. Is that one random day in the springtime enough for 18+ years (hell, a lifetime) of hard work and sacrifice?

“As mothers and daughters, we are connected with one another. My mother is the bones of my spine, keeping me straight and true. She is my blood, making sure it runs rich and strong. She is the beating of my heart. I cannot now imagine a life without her.”

Kristin Hannah, Summer Island

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My mom is nothing short of heaven-sent. She has over 26 years of military service under her belt, raised 6 kids in a blended family and still manages to be a great wife and take care of herself. There is nobody I admire as much as her. If someone needed the perfect blend of loving and kickass, she’d be it.

You’ve been there for everything, even though you weren’t always physically there. You’ve let me crawl into bed with you when I was having nightmares and got me medicine past midnight if my tummy was hurting. You took me shopping for new clothes just because we could and braided my hair when I still didn’t know how. You played multiple roles—seamstress, co-fort builder, tea party guest, personal chef, lady in waiting when I was a princess, first aid assistant, teacher, personal stylist, hairdresser, guidance counselor, dessert taste tester, and countless more. We will forever tell each other to “shut your mouth” and squeal over the wittle baby dolphins. You put up with me no matter how bratty I got and without fail, always tell me to “get my fingers out of my mouth” when I go to bite my nails. You endlessly photographed my crazy eyes and always made me life size dresses identical to what my Barbies had. You were there to save the day when I accidentally shaved off my eyebrow and helped me cut a round brush out of my bangs—let’s not forget how much peanut butter you had to put in my hair over the years to get gum out. There isn’t anything you didn’t do for me, and there’s not a single thing I wouldn’t ever do for you.

At 20, not many people appreciate their mom as much as they should. During high school, I’m sure that’s an even larger number. I’ve always had a very close relationship with my mother. She’s my best friend, my number one fan and most importantly, she’s my mommy. Nobody will ever come before her on my ‘favorites’ in my iPhone—doesn’t matter who you are. I will always go to her first for advice and once I get rich, she’s finally going to get her private island (a woodsy one, of course; not tropical. There will be deer and bunnies and fog and chirping birds).

We’re both stationed away from home at the moment. She’s finishing up at the Senior NCO Academy in preparation for her promotion to Senior Master Sergeant. Somehow, in the midst of studying and writing speeches and running 5k’s, she has managed to plan practically my entire wedding from 5000 miles away from home. Every last detail has come down to her; she’s definitely made my life a lot easier. If I get stressed, she’s a phone call away to metaphorically rub my temples. Don’t ever underestimate your mom, they’re capable of some pretty amazing things—remember? They made you.

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Love

To you, for loving me.

You love me when I’m happy, when it’s easy. When I’m laughing so hard I can’t breathe or, dare I say it, I snort. When I’m cuddly and kissy and just want to be touched. When I’m joking and watching so-bad-its-funny horror movies with you and scratching your head, back or various other body parts.

You love me when I’m sad. Not just sad, but like… pathetically sobbing, feeling like I’ll never be okay again sad. When all I do is push you away. When I can’t see and my nose is running and I am just an all-around crabby little asshole. When I have no goddamn clue why I’m in hysterics, you love me anyway.

You love me when I’m feeling fat. When I pull and tag at every bit of chub and loose skin, as if pulling it tight will make it stay that way. When I can’t fit into my jeans, so I wear the same pair of sweatpants every day consecutively for like a week. When I have to try on everything in my closet and have a full-out temper tantrum because I don’t like my body or anything I own to cover it up. You love me when I’ve gained ten pounds, even though I might as well have gained 100 with the way I’m acting.

You love me when I try to lose 30 pounds. When I’m supposed to diet and you’re supposed to be “helping” me, but every time you open your mouth about it I get super offended and bite your friggin’ head off. You love me when I fail, and when I complain about the gym. You love me even though I’m intolerable when I’m hungry.

You love me when I get mad at you for making jokes about other girls. When I get so jealous that even I can’t stand myself. When I can’t take a joke, or freak out about you calling me a mean name in a totally 100% joking manner.

You love me when I’m crazy. Wedding crazy. Baby crazy. Puppy crazy. ALL the crazy. When I’ve spent the past two hours obsessing to you over something you don’t give a single crap about. When I makes plans for us that you want no part of, you go anyway.

You love me when I say stupid things and hurt you. When it blows up, way out of proportion, into a screaming match. You love me when I apologize profusely, even though most of the time you know it won’t change. When you know it will happen again. You love me when it takes me a long time to get over it, and when it takes you a long time to get over it.

You love me when I can’t keep my hands off you. When I’m high on you. When all I want is be next to you for the rest of forever.

You love me whether it is easy or hard. Whether I deserve it or not. All the time.

You love me. And I love you. Unconditionally.

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Life

12 Things To Chase The Scrooge Out of You

I thought I would also give you a quick refresher on The Twelve Days of Christmas, as if you don’t have access to Google.

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Before I begin, I would like to mention that I have friends who also celebrate Kwanzaa and Hanukkah. I personally celebrate Christmas. Love and cherish your traditions, but I hope you enjoy while I share some of mine. Happy Holidays!

 

(Twelve drummers drumming)

Holiday Specials of Your TV Show—Every self-respecting television producer puts on an awesome Christmas episode. Getting to share this time of year with the cast just makes you love all the characters that much more.

(Eleven pipers piping)

It’s A Wonderful Life—What is it you want, Mary? What do you want? You want the moon? Just say the word and I’ll throw a lasso around it and pull it down.” This movie is pure warm and fuzzies. Make a habit of watching it every Christmas Eve.

(Ten lords a’leaping)

Ugly Sweaters—We have Bill Cosby to thank for this one. An awful poly-cotton blend with a reindeer whose nose is an actual jingle bell plastered to the front, how can you go wrong?!

(Nine ladies dancing)

Christmas Cookies—You can make them in every possible shape that reminds you of the holidays. I don’t even like sugar cookies but it’s just the right thing to do. What else are you supposed to leave out for Santa?

(Eight maids a’milking)

Matching Scarves, Hats & Gloves—Cashmere, wool, mink, fleece… These are a few of my favorite things; to be cozied up inside of! Plus, you get to look adorable while doing it.

(Seven swans a’swimming)

*I might be going out on a limb for this one, but…*

Finding the Pickle—I know this is generally a German tradition, but many families have adopted the little green metallic ornament and have a prize for whoever finds it on the tree first.

(Six geese a’laying)

The Gift of Giving—Our childhood’s are over which means there is no greater joy on Christmas than watching people open gifts that you may or may not have knocked over 2 elderly women in Macy’s to get the last of.

(Five golden rings)

Snowflakes—Either catching the real deal on your tongue or making the paper cutouts reminiscent of elementary school, they’re just plain fun.

(Four calling birds)

Family Time—I have seen twenty-somethings whining about how the holidays are “torture”. There was even an article about ancient torture methods that were actually used. You never see these people, and family is forever. Kiss your crazy Aunt Mary on the cheek just once, for goodness sakes.

(Three French hens)

Michael Bublé & Nat King Cole—First off, have you heard Michael’s rendition of “Santa Baby”??? His voice is like hot buttered rum. Yummy. And Nat… Oh Nat. His voice will deck the halls this time of the year for generations to come.

Sidenote: I’ll just leave this here:

(Two turtle doves)

Chai Tea/Cider/Hot Cocoa—They capture the essential taste of the holidays and warm you from the inside out! Extra props if you heat the cider on the stove with a few cinnamon sticks and whole nutmeg.

 

Drumroll, please…

 

(A partridge in a pear tree)

Mistletoe—whether you’re in a relationship or single, everybody loves the idea of getting whisked under that little bundle of holly berries and dipped into a kiss.

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Life, Love

What I’ve Learned After Getting Engaged

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With my wedding rapidly approaching (22 days until THE day, to be exact), I’ve been doing some self-reflecting. Being in a loving, committed relationship while preparing to pledge yourself to one person for the rest of your life can take a small toll on your psych. While undoubtedly ecstatic and happy to be marrying the man of my dreams in less than one month, I’ve noticed some things—about my fiancé, myself, and the world in general.

I am most definitely an extrovert.

I’ve always known I was a people person. My parents were also active duty military so we moved around a lot… It was really easy to make new friends no matter where we went. I’ve never had any issues public speaking and when a matter needs to be spoken about, you can expect to hear my voice. My fiancé is very certainly an introvert. He can handle and even enjoy time with people and also has no problem making friends; but when it comes down to it, he likes his me time. This has only made me realize even more that I am an open book. With a few exceptions, I keep very little secret. Maybe this is something I should work on? Maybe it’s just how I am, everyone is different—right?

I am a whole-hearted morning person.

Teenagers love waking up at the butt crack of dusk, am I right? There’s something that clicks in a person after turning the big 1-3 that makes them scour at the beautiful early sunlight. Sleeping in until after lunch had already been made was practically a right of passage. I was never like that. Even during the summers, I woke up on my own, no later than 10 o’clock—11 o’clock if I had stayed up ungodly late the night prior. Adjusting to sleeping (and waking up) with someone is always a chore. Which side of the bed do you like? How warm do you like your blankets? Do you cuddle in your sleep? Does music need to be playing or must it be completely silent? My fiancé and I have been on the same page for pretty much all of the textbook sleeping habits—for that I am thankful. However… I am an Energizer Bunny in the morning. I’ll rustle in my sleep when first awoken, but after that, there’s no turning back. If Emily’s up, he’s up. I feel pretty bad about this; mainly on the nights we stay up until midnight or 1am watching American Horror Story. Without fail, I’ll be awake at 8 o’clock and want attention. Poor Jason is still trying to catch some Zzz’s. This one I will definitely have to work on.

Weddings are a bunch of hokey pokey.

I’m going to get crap for this one—so much crap. In fact, my mom will probably give me an earful. Oh well. WHAT’S THE BIG FREAKING DEAL, PEOPLE?! All I care about is my dress, the food, and the man who is standing up there with me. There are so many minute details that I can’t even imagine giving two shits about. What color will the floating candle centerpieces be? How many blue marbles will be at the bottom of the bowl? What style knot should the bows on the back of the chairs be? The next day, nobody will remember noticing these things. Who the hell cares? I’ll tell you who cares—the wedding venues who make out like bandits because they can charge you $20 extra per person depending on what kind of silverware you pick out for the dinner. Don’t get me wrong, my Maggie Sottero wedding gown is to die for. The custom 3-course menu we created with the caterers is going to be a huge party in my mouth. But other than looking your most beautiful and eating the best food ever; as long as you’re doing it with the most perfect man for you on this entire planet, all of the other bullshit shouldn’t matter.

Big diamonds are overrated—and terrifying.

Who says my hubby has to buy me a 1 carat certified diamond ring that is princess cut and costs a quarter of my 1 year old car?! That’s ridiculous. Not to mention, a HUGE load of responsibility. I am clumsy and forgetful. I break things, hurt myself and lose track of the simplest thoughts. Thinking about being responsible for other human being’s lives in the future is scary enough, why would I want the daily burden of getting my hand robbed of three months’ salary? No thanks. I never really got into Pinterest, but I can imagine bitches be like “omg dream engagement ring” and the thing costs five grand. Who are you planning on marrying, darling? Daddy Warbucks’ great grandson? Good luck. I have a beautiful white sapphire bridal set that is completely affordable. This goes along with the hokey pokey point—remember the reasons you’re doing this whole thing. LOVE.

Last but definitely not least, I AM SO MADLY IN LOVE.

I try not to include such specific details about my personal life in my posts; I think that keeps them relatable. But if you’re engaged/newlywed/going on 50 years, you can agree and relate to this. It’s that can’t sleep, can’t breathe, can’t eat without them feeling. You start and end every day knowing that you have found that person to be your other half, your partner in crime, for the rest of eternity.

“When you realize you want to spend the rest of your life with somebody, you want the rest of your life to start as soon as possible.” Nora Ephron – When Harry Met Sally

Four months turned into a small number of days in the blink of an eye. That lady Nora knows her stuff, I couldn’t be more excited to start my life with such an incredible man. I spent a better portion of my life closing myself off from people, trying to convince everyone (including myself) that I didn’t need anyone to be happy– especially not a man. Finding the right person is scary, happy, confusing, beautiful and exciting all wrapped into one indescribable feeling. He teaches me new things about him, our love, the world, and myself every single day. I count my blessings and thank God for letting me love and be loved by such a wonderful person; and I plan on remembering just how special he is for the rest of my life.

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