Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Freeze Frame This Perfect Moment

I am so in love with my fiance.

What a great Memorial Day weekend we shared together. On Friday, we went up North to a friend's house to spend the weekend grilling, relaxing and boating. The couple we stayed with are work associates of Andi's and we had a great time getting to know them better. We have plenty in common - both love to travel, spend time outdoors, etc - and it was so refreshing to get to know someone new. Change up our surroundings a bit. The other couple is also about 10 years older than we are, more settled into life and have a child. Sort of like they're in the next phase in life. I mostly enjoyed spending time with them because it was a great forecast into our future. I found myself imaging Andi and I sitting with the neighbors, having cocktails by the file and toasting marshmellows with our kids someday. So relaxing and fun. The real American dream.

Times like these make me realize what a great fit Andi and I together. We get along so well; we have fun, we laugh and we truly enjoy our time together. I know we're making the right decision by taking the next step into marriage.

Speaking of marriage, we're nearing 2 months to the big date. I'm starting to get really excited. Plans are coming together. Only need to get Andi's outfit, reserve the dinner location and buy Andi's ring yet. Oh, and make a spa appointment for the girls, order flowers, send out our wedding website and finalize our photo locations ... guess we have a few more things to check off the list of To Dos. But ...

at the end of the summer, I'll be a wife. And I can't wait :)

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Graduation Over ... It's Wedding Time!

On Sunday, we celebrated my little brother's high school graduation. I am soooo proud of him! I'm still amazed at how much he's grown up - a complete transformation from shy, akward teen to hansome, poised young man. Good work Brother! Off to the next chapter in life ...Now that graduation's over, it's full on wedding time! The next big event is my bachelorette party in June and then a bridal shower my aunt is hosting. It's really starting to feel like we're getting married now! Starting to get calls from friends saying they've received their bridal shower/bachelorette party invites. I'm so excited to see them! My best friend made them. I'll post one up here for you to see this week.

The wedding countdown begins...

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Happy Graduation Brother

We're taking another trip down South this weekend for my little brother's high school graduation. I CANNOT believe my little baby brother is graduating! We're 10 years apart in age and I remember everything about his life. In honor of this special weekend, here are a few of my favorite Brother memories:

Memory 1:
When I was 9, I remember sitting in the kitchen of my parent's house on 28th with my little sister when my mom came home from work. "I have something to tell you girls," she said. "You're going to have a little baby brother or sister." We were elated!

I was in the 4th grade when Brother was born. When my dad called the elementary school to tell us he'd been born (dinosaur alert: this is back in the day before 10 year-old kids had cell phones), my sister and I raced down to the school secretary's office and answered the phone. "You have a little brother," my dad said. Sister and I were so proud.

I raced back to 4th grade and stood in front of the entire class to let everyone know I was a sister again. Awwww....

Memory 2:
When Brother came home from the hospital, I used to dream that he'd grow up and I'd be his favorite sister. (Remember, I was 10). I thought he'd race home from school and run up the stairs shouting my name b/c he was so happy to see me. Yep, that never happened.

Memory 3:
When Brother was young (maybe 4 ish)? he had tons of Legos in his room. And along with being a 4-year old, he also had a problem of pooping in his little boy underwear and hiding them in his Lego boxes. Ick! His room would smell so bad and Mom would have to hunt down the hidden treasures. (This story is going to be great to tell his future wife someday...)

Memory 4:
When Brother was 8 or so and I was in high school, I'd sometimes come home a little buzzed up from a night out with friends. As I pulled into the garage with my little Nissan 300ZX, I'd give his little bicycle a love tap with my car. The next day, he'd come out and say "Heather, you ran over my bike again!" Oops.

Reader's Note: As an adult, I now know who incredibly stupid I was to be driving in this sort of condition. Point taken.

Memory 5:
Last summer, Brother came up to visit Andi and I in MN. It's amazing to see how much he's grown up since he was here only a year ago. So innocent and afraid to break the rules then; oh how college life with change him....

Happy Graduation Brother!

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Happy Mother's Day!

Today is Mother's Day. To celebrate, Andi and I went to his cousin's house for brunch - to spend the day with all the mothers in his family.

What a great day!

The boys were gracious enough to allow the mothers to eat first and invited me to join as I was the next "mother-to-be" ... which naturally made my day. As all the ladies sat around the table and shared memories of being a mother, I couldn't help but be excited for the next few years to come. We're at such a piviotal point in our lives; a fork in the road. In a few short months, marriage. A new beginning where Andi and I start our life together. Then, we'll become parents ourselves and share hugs and smiles with our own children.

Since I can remember, I've always dreamed of being a mother. It'll be my greatest accomplishment in life. I long for the day when I learn I'm expecting. I dream of the day I hold my own baby in my arms. What a precious gift to be a mother!

Happy Mother's Day!

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

When Good Dogs Attack

Chloe does this funny thing where she pretends to be tough and attack you. Andi caught it on video. Enjoy :)

ps...don't be afraid, she's only playin'


Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Living in Sin

Andi and I had our 4th meeting with the pastor who's performing our marriage ceremony today. While I've really enjoyed carving out time to meet once a week to discuss our upcoming marriage and learn skill sets to achieving a better, healthier relationship, I can't help but feel uncomfortably strange when the "s" word comes up. You know it, sex.

What an akward thing to discuss with anyone outside your relationship - especially in the house of God. Ick. Today, Pastor gave us an entire packet of questions to work through as a couple before our next session. The questions ... too embarrassing to state here. Let's just say they get into some pretty specific details. Let's pray this is an exercise for the two of us and not something we have to discuss next week.

What's worse, Pastor already knows we're living together and has asked us to make other arrangements until the wedding. Like what I wonder? Living in the garage? After explaining we own a house and have lived in sin for 2 years now, I think he's concluded we wouldn't be able to accomodate to his request. The good news, he's still willing to marry us under these circumstances. Thank goodness for liberal churches!

Monday, May 4, 2009

Let's Get This Party Started...

I'm so excited - my bachelorette party's only 5 weeks away. My childhood best friend is kind enough to host the festivities for me ... and even more gracious to plan a day of celebration exactly as I envision it.

First, we're planning to host a dainty bridal shower at my friend's house here in the Cities. Full of sundresses, snacks and fun girlie games about love and Andi & I's relationship. Although I'm not the typical bride who's dreamed of the perfect big white wedding, I have envisioned my bridal shower and bachelorette party exactly as this. It's going to be great.

After the bridal shower, we're planning to go camping at a nearby campsite not far outside of town. Camping for a bachelorette party, you say? Sound crazy? Absolutely not. I think it sounds fantastic. And I'm so happy my girlfriend who's hosting has agreed to throw this kind of event. I'm mostly excited because it's something different and a way for all of us girls to spend time together, laugh and tell stories, eat tons of junk food and drink some beers ... all while hanging out at a safe location where none of us have to drive or worry about getting home.

I got the idea for a camping bachelorette party from a weekend last summer where a bunch of us got together at the very same site we're going to in June. Just look how much fun we had :)
Besides, I'm getting too old for the whole bar scene. The last thing I want is to sport a suck for a buck t-shirt or drink from penis straws ... ick.

So, here's a list of things any girl party needs to do up camping right. My bachelorette will be no exception:

  • Tent & Sleeping Bags -check! - my mom & dad gifted me a 2-room tent that holds 10 people. Now if we can only figure out how to set it up ...
  • Junk Food - mix and match your favorites - some classic camping favorites: chex mix, puppy chow, licorice, chips, cookies, nuts or marshmellows
  • Beer - really, any cocktail will do ...
  • Tablecloth - not needed for your standard camping adventure, but really ties it all together for a girlie night out don'tcha think?
  • Duraflame Log - do you really think girls can start a fire Boy Scout-style?
  • Lawn Chairs - the better to kick in and tell stories
  • Flash lights - so trips to the porta-potty are a little less scary

Sound like the best bachelorette party you've ever heard of? I think so too. I can't wait :) It's going to be great.

Road Trip

My little dog Chloe just cracks me up. This is us ... driving back from Nebraska on Sunday. She loves riding in the car and is so content in doing so. This is Chloe sitting in the passenger seat, checking out the view:
Chloe bounces from spot to spot in the car. This is her on the floor by my feet:

Little Chloe girl, many memories we share on the open road...

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Brookie Update

After my aunt Connie's funeral on Friday, I came down to Beatrice to spend the weekend with my parents. My sister was feeling generous (or desperately in need of some 'me' time) and asked me if I'd drive my little neice Brooke back home and babysit her for the day. I, of course, said sure.

So, my dad transferred the car seat to my Jetta, all the while asking me if I was sure I wanted to drive for 2 hours all by myself with a 22 month old. "No problem I said," and it wasn't. What a cute little sweetie she's growing to be. I was astonished in the 2 weeks since I've seen her how much she's changed. A few things I've noticed since I saw Brooke last:

1) her new favorite word is "owie" - everything is owie to this girl. She kicks the back of my chair - owie. She remembers a fall from a week before and relives the scab on her knee - owie. So cute that after the 18,000 time you hear it, it's like "girlfriend, we get it."

2) her little baby mullet is growing out ... and almost grown out past her shoulders. Why do little kids hair grow in different stages, I wonder? Poor little Brooke was rocking "business in the front and party in the back" for weeks. Thankfully her mom pulls it into a cute pony and it's not so obvious. Btw, her hair is turning darker brown, more resembling her mother everyday.

3) random bursts of abc's have never been cuter - hearing Brookie stumble through this song instantly takes me back to rocking her in my parent's livingroom when she was 3 days old. She loved to listen to us sing ABC's and now she's singing to us.

4) This girl can dance. She hits the musical button on a nearby toy and sways to the music, shaking her hips and waving her arms. Where did she get this much rhythm? Definitely not from Auntie Heather!

5) Brookie is leaning to say please and thank you, especially if she wants something. Or rather, peeeze and tanks.

It's amazing to watch kids learn to adapt in the world. Can't wait to see her in another 2 weeks to see all new things she's learned.