Posts Tagged With: Apartment

No more tears…

No this isn’t a commercial for some sort of extra gentle baby shampoo, but yes, I am talking about tears, the things that fall from our eyes when we are hurt or upset, not to be confused with tears, or rips in paper or clothing.

The English language is confusing.

Sheesh.

But I did spend my entire college career studying it…well, that and a bunch of other stuff considering I went to a private liberal arts college.

Anyway, back to my original topic…tears.

I’ve been crying a lot less than I did the first year of our marriage.

This is just a happy picture to show you I was really, in fact, happy during our first year of marriage, even though I did cry a lot. Think of the crying as small intermissions between all the happiness, ok?

Not that the first year of our marriage was sad or unhappy. Quite the contrary. I was super happy to be married to my best friend…but I also cried a lot.

Why?

Well, I’m not sure, but I’m willing to venture some guesses.

(Check out the links to see some earlier blog posts that help explain all these little ramblings!)

1. I didn’t have a job.

This was a big one for me. I’ve never really struggled with anything as much as I struggled to find a job. We didn’t need the money, but it would have been nice while trying to maintain a budget and save as much as possible for a down payment. And it certainly hurt my pride, confidence and general self-esteem to feel like a failure for so long. I went through so many stages of dealing with it: determination, hope, peace, anger, embarrassment, hope, frustration, peace, anxiety, hope, fear, anger,  disappointment…you get the idea. And though I learned a lot about gratitude and humility and trust, it was a struggle the entire time. And even though this self-employed freelance writing thing is still hard, I’m so thankful for the opportunity to do something I love and that will contribute to our finances, even just at a part-time level.

2. I was worried about finding and affording a house we loved.

We all know that worked out well for us, and that we now have the biggest project we’ve ever taken on together as a fabulous home, but for awhile, it was hard to imagine leaving our little apartment, hard to wrap my head around how much this all would cost, hard to decide where we wanted to put down real roots and raise our kiddos, hard to figure out just how much house we needed and how much project we could take on…but finding our home was a journey, that’s for sure.

3. I was hormonal.

Let’s face it, this is still true. But maybe being on the pill for over 1 1/2 years now has finally allowed my body to calm down and stop freaking out over every tiny little change in the hormone levels.

4. I was tired.

Remember our sleeping adventures, like Hubs’ sleep talking, and figuring out our sides of the bed, and our different sleep schedules? I didn’t sleep so well for the first few months of our marriage, or the first several months. I still have nights where it’s a struggle, like last night, when I was woken up by snores and then I laid there for fifteen minutes, half-asleep and nearly incoherent, before realizing it was coming from the sleeping Hubs beside me and yes, I could in fact, wake him up and tell him to roll over. After which he got a little grumpy because I was pretty persistent after not believing his half-asleep, “okay,” with no signs of movement. Anyway, when I’m tired, I get salty, and when I’m salty, I tend to cry easily. I’m sleeping better these days, for the most part, or maybe adjusting to living on less shut-eye.

5. I was homesick.

Again, I was thrilled to be married. And I loved it for that first year of newlywed-ness…but I also missed my family. And I felt a little alienated from them because there just wasn’t much opportunity for visiting (my mom doesn’t drive in the city…at all). Moving to our new house in this new neighborhood is perfect. We’re closer. Our parents can (and do!) visit more often. And the biggest part of this? This house is now HOME. Our apartment was home, too, but never in the way I feel about our house.

And that my friends is why the last few months have held far less salty, wet kisses as Hubs attempts to cheer me up, less red, swollen eyes, and much more giggles, laughs and smiles.

Not that I wasn’t giddy and happy during our first year of marriage, but settling into this married life sure feels good.

 

What about you? What was hard for you in your early married years? Do you cry a lot? Did you used to cry a lot? How did you get over it? How did your Hubs help with drying the tears? 

Categories: Love Stuff | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 9 Comments

Moving Madness

Sorry I’ve been posting less lately, guys. It’s just that we’re moving so soon and I have so much to do and our apartment is a mess and I just am too tired to write a blog post with all this other stuff going on right now.

You understand, right?

Of course you do, because you’re all kind, nice, amazing people, right?

Right.

Well, I’ll start by giving you a quick description of what our apartment looks like right now.

The floors are nearly covered  in boxes and bags and such, both packed and ready to be packed, leaving winding trails of walkways to get from room to room (all 4 of our little rooms…). The piles of packed stuff are getting larger and I realized last night it might have been smart to not put them near the door so that Hubs and his brother will have a harder time getting all the big stuff out of here as us women and older folks are carrying all the millions of boxes and such down the three flights of stairs….ugh…I’m dreading it already.

Guess I’ll work on moving some stuff around today.

The thing is, other than moving in here, (which we did a little bit at a time for my stuff, and Hubs didn’t really pack any of his stuff, just loaded up everything as it was) and moving into the dorm an back home three years in college, I’ve never really moved. So all this crazy packing stuff is a first.

How do I even pack silverware? Or plates? Or frozen foods? And how can I pack it ahead when we’re still using it? Are we supposed to just eat at Wendy’s every meal for the next few days?

I’m also unsure how to pack the stuff in the bathroom. What if I decide I need that certain kind of lotion tomorrow and I have it boxed up in some giant tote of random lotions, soaps, and sprays, never to find it again? What if I pack all the towels and then spill an entire glass of water on the floor/wall by our bed so I have nothing to mop it up with? (This may or may not have happened this morning…)

How do I pack all our clothes so I won’t go crazy with wrinkles and having to rewash everything when we get to the house?

What about the remote for the TV? The laptop charger? I need those things to be out where we can use them!

Someone help me!

Anyway, wish me luck guys. If we survive this week, and the next few weeks of crazy at the house while we’re unpacking, moving in, painting, refinishing, scraping, sanding, building and cleaning, we’ll be good to go.

The finish line’s never looked so far away, though…or more worth it.

Happy homemaking, to anyone else who’s dealing with this stuff! And for those that are already settled into clean, beautiful, comfortable homes, send me lists of your secrets, coupons to Wendy’s, and plates of cookies and chocolate.

After all, I had to eat all the candy in our apartment because it was easier than packing it and then having it melt in this heat, right?

I thought so.

🙂

Categories: Adventures | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 12 Comments

What do you want for dinner?

Last week was a busy one.

With trying to pack up our apartment and paint our new house, we’re running out of all the essentials for weeknight dinners.

As in our fridge has ketchup, fresh zucchini, and water inside it. That’s it.

Yikes.

(Ok, there’s more than that in there, but still, it’s pretty empty. So is the pantry.)

On Thursday, I had no idea what to make for dinner. I was tired and hungry and kind of cranky. Plus, we needed to go to the store to get supplies for some house projects. Hubs got home, late because he’d had a work thing, and I asked him what he wanted for dinner. He didn’t know.

He could tell I was worn out from working all day (I had a busy week freelancing last week) and wasn’t feeling very inspired for coming up with something for dinner.

So he, like the fabulous husband he is, went to the kitchen and started opening cabinets, looking for something to make.

“What do you want for dinner, honey? I’ll make it,” he said.

But he didn’t find much in there to work with either.

And pretty quickly decided…”Let’s grab a bite to eat out somewhere before heading to the store.”

I jumped on that suggestion and out we went.

Now, normally, we don’t eat out…like ever. Especially on a weeknight.

And  normally, I’m fine with that because we’re trying to save as much money as possible, and that doesn’t leave a lot of room for overpriced restaurant food. Plus, I really do enjoy making dinner for the two of us.

But sitting down and ordering an appetizer (free with a coupon) and an entree to share, where someone cooked and brought me my food and then cleaned up after me when I was finished was exactly what I needed to refuel in the middle of an exhausting week.

I thankful for how Hubs saw that I needed help to get out of my funk, and how he’d taken such a simple approach to solving the problem. He’s so quick to offer his services for the benefit of others–myself or someone else, and I love that about him.

I’m thankful I was able to see past the normal boundary of eating out of a weekday to know that this would improve my mood considerably. I’m thankful we live so close to some restaurants that are ready to feed hungry, cranky wives who can get stir crazy after being inside all day while they work from home. I’m thankful for a husband who senses when I need to get out of the house.

And honestly, with our coupon and because we shared everything, it really only ended up being like $15 dollars or something…which fit pretty well into our budget after all.

 

Categories: Everyday Life | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Being in over my head…

It’s happened more this past year than ever in the previous twenty-one or twenty-two years…combined. At least, it feels like that.

Why?

Well, because until this past year, I guess my life was pretty safe, stable, and some might say…easy.

Ok. I said it.

I had an easy life.

Not that I was spoiled, but I was never in need of anything, or forced to do anything really scary or over my head.

Until I got married.

And moved to a big city.

Where I knew pretty much no one.

And for sure had no idea how to get around up here on my own.

All while trying to find a real job.

And then we decided to try to buy a house.

And finally ended up doing just that.

(insert mini celebration here)

But there are a lot of things that have been, and still are, overwhelming about all these exciting developments. In fact, sometimes I find myself feeling so overwhelmed that I don’t even know what’s overwhelming me…just that I’m in need of some sort of organization and solution to…well everything.

And in times like that, I make lists. Usually in my head, sometimes written down. So here goes:

1. We know pretty much nothing about fixing up a house. It’s frightening when both of us have no real opinion on a matter and yet have to make some sort of major decision anyway.

2. There’s a million and one paint colors out there, for each brand of paint. How will I ever choose which ones to buy and put on our walls?

3. We have very little furniture to fill all these new rooms.

4. We don’t have a big enough budget to buy furniture to fill all these new rooms…not even thrift store furniture. Yikes.

5. I still don’t have a REAL job.

6. Maybe my real job is being a freelancer. Maybe I should work on getting more jobs and more clients and try to really make this work…so many what ifs there.

7. WHY WON’T ANYONE HIRE ME????

8. How are we ever going to get packed up, loaded, and unloaded in this 110 degree heat?

9. Will I ever run again? Why am I too tired in the morning to get up to do this? Why is it too scary for a woman to run by herself at night? Stupid crime and stuff…

10. What will me not having a job mean when it comes time to start paying bills for the house?

11. What it Hubs has to start traveling more for work?

12. My kitchen is so messy. So small, and yet so messy.

13. My dining room is so messy. So totally and completely impossible to be used as a dining room right now.

14. My living room is so messy…you get the idea, right?

15. The new house is in a state of un-wallpapered walls, mostly-painted ceilings, messy floors, piles of tools and supplies, tarps, drop cloths and messes everywhere.

16. My car is still making a funny noise, and we can’t ever find time to take it anywhere to get looked at…

17. Hubs’ car is too hot to drive in this weather.

18. We REALLY don’t want to have to buy a new car right now…

19. We have nothing in our cabinets to make for dinner.

Phew.

Ok, I’m done now.

Thanks.

Now that I’m finished organizing my overwhelmed-ness (?), I can move on to solving some stuff, right?

Or I can just sit back on the couch and wait for Hubs to come home and help me.

Or I can start wondering why he’s almost 30 minutes late getting home from work.

Oops, there I go again.

Note: Please don’t mistake this post as complaining about my life with Hubs. I’m blessed and I know it. I’m just feeling scattered and overwhelmed with all the stuff going on right now in my head. This was just my way of admitting to the world how un-put-together my life is…as I know that sometimes blogging about good stuff, conflict resolution, and happy times can make it seem like I have it all figured out…when in fact, I most certainly do not.

🙂

What about you, friends? What’s overwhelming you? What in your life is totally and completely unorganized right now? What messes are you cleaning up or trying to figure out how to hide if company suddenly comes over?

 

Categories: Everyday Life | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Birthday Blessings

Well, guys, for those of you that didn’t know already, Saturday was my 23rd birthday.

Around here, at least for me, birthdays are a special occasion.

I try to make them a special occasion for Wyatt, too, but he just doesn’t get as excited as I do about these things.

Luckily, Hubs was (finally) home from Boston, where he had been on business since Tuesday morning. Ick.

I hate these little trips he has to take away from home. I know, I know, he’s providing for us right now, and he’s moving forward in his career, but it still sucks to be away. I don’t care how often we end up doing this. I’m going to hate it every time.

Every single time.

But…

Moving on.

On Saturday, we had extra to celebrate.

Not only was it my birthday, but it was also the day after Hubs got home, and it was so close to our anniversary, that we spilled it over and celebrated everything all in one.

We started our day off right by sleeping in. It had been a busy week for both of us and we’ve spent early mornings working at the house for the past few weekends.

It started out with a heft dose of sleeping in…because who doesn’t like sleeping in on your birthday…or any day…?

And then Wyatt made this for me.

I’d say that’s a good start to the day…

After breakfast, we went back to bed. Yup. We’re lazy and awesome that way.

And then we got up and went out bargain-hunting. Since buying our house, I’m obsessed with thrift stores, flea markets, garage sales, and all that awesome stuff so it’s what I requested we do.

However, we went to like 10 places around KC and didn’t buy anything. Darnit.

But then, we came back to our apartment, got all cleaned up, and ready to go out again.

We looked something like this:

Yes, the photo is dark, sorry guys.

And Wyatt gave me the present he’d brought back from Boston and wrapped himself.

I love presents!

It was wrapped so perfectly! Look at those corners!

If a man can wrap a good present, marry him, ladies. 🙂
(Just kidding.)
(Sort of.)

And it was a great present, inside!

A Boston Marathon workout shirt! It’s yellow! (And I’m going to go with the “inspiration to run a marathon some day, not “faking like I ran the Boston marathon” way of thinking about it)

And then, finally, we went to Melting Pot for dinner!

I’ve wanted to go there for years, and it was totally worth the wait…and the price tag, as it was a triple celebration, after all!

First, we dipped wonderful things in cheese.

Bread, chips, fruits, and veggies. With spinach artichoke dip. Yes please!

And then we ate salad, but let’s face it, that’s not what any of you want to see, is it?

So I’ll skip to the next good part, the raw meat.

A feast for two!

 

And the sauces:

So many choices. I liked the teriyaki best. (Is that how you spell that?)

And then we cooked everything in our pot of boiling delicious broth.

I got to eat all the mushrooms, since Hubs doesn’t like those. Thank you!

But then, the part I had been waiting for all night:

Yup, that’s me holding a rice krispie treat dipped in s’mores chocolate sauce. Oh my heavens. Yum.

It was amazing.

 

Some dessert dipping options. We requested more bananas and rice krispies. But the brownies were also heavenly.

And after eating all of that, we waddled around on the plaza for awhile enjoying the city at night, the fountains, the people, the bright lights. The warm night. (I thought it was perfect. Hubs was a little hot.)

And then we went home and promptly headed to bed.

Of course, we stayed awake long enough to see out the very last moments of “my day,” cuddled up together, all happy and content.

And I thought back to how we’d spent my last birthday… on our honeymoon, in Chicago, at a Cubs game (which they lost! Go Cards!) and then went back to the hotel and ordered a giant apple dumpling, which I ate mostly by myself.

Yes, I know I look awfully “pretty” to be on my honeymoon, but to be fair, I was on antibiotics for a UTI and had spent all night at a very hot, very crowded Wrigley Field.

When I think about all we’ve done this first year, and how blessed I am in this married life, I’m almost overcome with gratitude to the One who wrote this beautiful love story for us, to our parents for both bringing us into this world (Thanks, mom!), and for helping bring us together by raising us to be who we are today, and to Hubs, who so patiently forgives me when I mess up and celebrates our love with me every day in the silly, simple, and sweet ways that are so special to us.

Happy birthday, indeed.

 

Categories: Adventures | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments

Advice from You: “Real” Grown-ups

I think the biggest thing about having our one-year anniversary is that I’m now feeling less and less like a newlywed.

Of course, I’d say a big part of this is that we bought a “big” house that we are now working on and making our own.

We have settled into our own routines and habits. We have favorite weeknight dinners and a familiar list of grocery “staples” that we buy every week, or every week at least.

And we just feel like we’re growing up more all the time.

I have to admit I feel a little sad about some of this “growing up” stuff. I don’t want to lose the freshness and excited newness we had when we were first married. I’m even a little sad to leave our apartment as we move to our new house soon…it’s where we learned how to live together, where we became our own little family.

But I know the future will hold so much more than the past has held, and that there will always be new and exciting things for us to do together. And even though we won’t feel like newlyweds, we’ll feel like a comfortable, stable, married couple…which is just as good. Better even.

Still, sometimes I find myself feeling nostalgic and unsure what to do with those feelings.

What about you? Ever feel like you’re growing up too fast? Ever feel sad thinking about how some really great, exciting times are behind you? How do you handle those feelings? Let’s here some advice!

Categories: Advice | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 8 Comments

How a broken radiator taught me to trust my husband more

Last week, my car overheated on the way to get the water switched over to our name at our new house. I told you guys all about it, so of course, because you are such loyal and awesome readers, that you remember ever tiny little detail about it. In case your mind is a little fuzzy on the details, or you missed it because you were vacationing somewhere fabulous and fancy, or just because the post was so awesome you want to go back and read it again, here it is.

A few days after all that took place, Hubs and I were driving around in my car because his car doesn’t have air conditioning and it’s 150-million degrees in Kansas City lately (No? Fine, but it’s hot!), it started to get a little hot again.

Why do we get so upset that our cars can’t keep cool in this heat. WE can’t keep cool in this heat!

When we got home, he checked the water levels and they were low again. That means I had a leak. Uh oh.

But he saw a tiny little line that looked like a crack on the radiator and so set to work finding out where to buy one and thinking about getting it replaced right away.

He tracked down the best deal for the fix: buying the radiator from an auto-store and putting it in himself, and set out to get started.

I balked.

Just a little, but it was enough to make him mad.

I wanted to KNOW that spending the money (unbudgeted, mind you, though we do have an emergency fund)  would fix the problem. We just bought a house. I don’t have a full time job. This is not the time to spend money we don’t have to. I needed some assurance that this money and effort (it seemed like an awful lot of work to put that radiator in ourselves!) would not all be for nothing when we found my car was still loosing water somewhere…

Hubs was angry.

He thought this meant I was arguing with him, doubting his wisdom on fixing the car, blocking him from trying to take action to fix a problem for me, for us, as soon as possible.

I didn’t mean to convey all that with my questions, but I guess I did. He didn’t mean to blow up and get so huffy so fast when all I was looking for was some additional reassurance, but it certainly resulted in a negative reaction from both of us as he stormed down the steps to go find some “proof” this “crack” was the culprit.

Oops. Good thing we forgive easily.

So after a few minutes of huffing and sulking and being salty with each other, we set to work. He filled up the radiator with water and squeezed some big hose for a few minutes until, yup, little water bubbles started foaming out of the tiny little line that did, in fact, turn out to be fairly significant crack in a super important part of the car, especially when it’s 100+ degrees outside.

So we bought the radiator and parked under a shade tree in our apartment’s parking lot. And then we worked all evening, about three hours or so, until we got it changed.

I’m allowed to honestly say “we” there because I helped, really.

I promise I did. You can ask him.

I held the light. I struggled to hold back hoses and stuff that were in his way. I even helped put in some little pin thing that holds the hose in place. I found and picked up stuff he dropped down into the mess of parts and stuff that make up the tangled, confusing mess under the hood of the car whenever the little pins were so small and springy that he could barely hold onto them while having to fight to work in the tiny space between the fan and the radiator to get things all hooked back up properly. I took out and put back in the air filter so he’d have about an inch more room to work….you get the idea.

And pretty soon this happened:

Hubs putting in the last bolt. We’re finally done!

We had successfully taken this out:

Yuck.

And put this in its place:

So shiny and new!

Time to relax and celebrate!

But it was after 9:00 and we hadn’t had dinner, we both needed a shower and we were hot and tired.

So we scrubbed the oil and grease and dirt and stuff off our hands and arms, warmed up some leftovers, and collapsed on our couch for the rest of the night. And by rest of the night, I mean about an hour before we dragged ourselves off to bed.

But in this crazy mess of an afternoon that was supposed to be relaxing (we’d scheduled some QT involving yummy food and FRIENDS on the couch that night), I learned an awesome lesson.

This man that I married never ceases to amaze me or give me more and more reasons to love and respect him. He knows so much about so much and is willing to work hard to do whatever he needs to provide for us. He’s smart and strong and sensible. He’s loving and patient and kind to me when I don’t deserve it.  He’s more than I ever imagined he could be when we danced that first dance together in the gym…when I was 15.

I’m nearly 23 now and you know what? I’m more than I ever imagined I could be, too. Funny how life does that to us, huh?

And I’m grateful to love a man I can trust with my heart, my life, my future babies…and my car.

So very thankful for these hands. And this man.

Categories: Lessons | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

Was there an earthquake? And other lessons…

I learned two lessons tonight. One of them may change my marriage for the better if I’m able to really let it sink in.

1. Things will break.

Yes, it was a sad night in our kitchen tonight.

One of the beer glasses I got for Wyatt for Christmas this year broke in the dishwasher and Hubs discovered it as he was unloading it tonight while I was making dinner.

I was devastated because it was the first item we’d really broken since being married. (We lasted almost a year with no broken glass…wow! Anyone who knows us knows that’s an accomplishment, being as we are both super clumsy.) We’ve been so careful with all of our new, nice things because we aren’t in a place financially to just run out and replace everything and anything all the time. We try to take the best care of our things as we can. And these glasses were special because they were a gift from me to him on our first Christmas together…

And now we only have 3 of them.

I didn’t cry. But I wanted to a little bit.

Hubs was quick to say it was fine and that it wasn’t a big deal. I toughened up and agreed.

Until I opened the fridge and saw this.

Seriously, What happened?!?

That’s a HUGE crack in our everyday pitcher that we love. And it happened while it was just sitting in the fridge. When I saw it and cried out in disbelief, Hubs was quick to come see what was the matter. He was shocked to see the ruined pitcher, and asked if there’d been an earthquake or something.

Why was all this stuff breaking now?

On a day when I’d been feeling salty and grumpy and discouraged and sad about needing a full time job and wanting to contribute more to our finances to help us be more secure as we buy this house and have more bills to deal with each month.

On a night we’d already bickered a few times, mostly because I was upset and struggling to not take out my frustration on Hubs.

Broken…so broken.

But as I whined and complained and sulked over the broken pieces, Hubs so wisely pointed out that “Honey, things break.”

Which brings me to lesson two.

2. Just because things break or feel like they are breaking, doesn’t mean our marriage is broken.

We’re going to have hard times. We’re going to struggle with worries about finances and major decisions. It’s part of life. Me not having a “real” job right now can’t affect us to the point that we’re living in fear of the unknown. The truth is that we are getting by just fine and we are so excited to be able to buy this house that we love. We’re not in over our heads and if we keep saving and being frugal and sticking to our budget, we won’t get that way. We’ll be fine.

Better than fine.

I can’t let my career situation define me in a negative way right now. I am doing what I can and we are moving forward every day. My lack of a job, no matter what it feels like some days, doesn’t mean I’m broken.

And it certainly doesn’t mean we’re broken.

And unlike these glasses, we’re going to be fine.

Categories: Lessons | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments

My favorite things about summer

Hey guys. Yesterday was the first day of summer. Did you know that?

Did you celebrate that?

Well, you should have, if you didn’t. Remember how Hubs and I were going to go eat these awesome gourmet hotdogs to celebrate summer?

Oh, you don’t remember that?

Maybe it’s because you should go back and read this post again. And if you missed the hot dog part, you might have missed our big announcement that you guys have all been waiting for so patiently while I kept hinting and hinting, so you should probably read #4 pretty carefully, okay?

Ok. I’ll give you time to go read and come back.

Done?

Remember the hot dogs now?

Good. That’s better.

See how awesome they were?

Anyway, in honor of summer, here’s a list of my favorite (5) things about this glorious season.

1. It’s warm and sunny most of the time. What can I say, I’m a child of the sun, the pool, and sitting on swings. Always have been, always will be.

2. There’s some awesome stuff that happens during the summer. Like my birthday. And our anniversary now. And the 4th of July. Which, by the way, all those things happen in like a 1.5 week span, so that’s one super awesome, celebration-full week! Yippee!

Yup. I just said Yippee. Don’t judge.

3. People don’t think it’s crazy that I’m in the mood for ice cream 24/7. In fact, it’s sort of normal to love ice cream that much during the summer.

4. Summer usually means travel. I like to travel and take roadtrips. Even though we’re not going anywhere far away, we’re still going to have some fun adventures this summer. For sure. You should have some fun adventures, too.

5. People cut grass and mow hay in the summer, and the wildflowers bloom alongside the roads. I know it’s no longer my home, but the country in the summer is the most glorious place in the world to be. I promise.

There ya have it, my favorite 5 things about summer. Actually, it’s just the first and best five that I came up with while writing this silly post, but you get the idea.

Of course, there’s millions more awesome summer things to celebrate, so you should leave a comment and tell me what’s on your summer list! Ready? Go!

Categories: Everyday Life | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 8 Comments

It’s been 6 months…how are YOU doing on your resolutions?

Well guys, today is the first day of summer.

(insert mini celebration here)

Yes, I know I live nowhere near the beach, but this photo of my happy little toes in the sand on a mission trip to Myrtle beach in 2008 makes me think of Summer. Plus, it make me happy, and Summer=happy, right?

Here’s another photo from that trip, just because.

And another picture from that summer trip to the beach, this time with my lovely sister. Isn’t it clear how much we love each other? And how much we love summer?!

Are you still celebrating summer with me looking at these pictures? I bet you are!

Disclaimer: This is my Hubs. He doesn’t really look like himself here, but it’s him. And that is not a real tattoo. Just FYI.

Hubs and I are going to celebrate tonight by heading out to a gourmet hot dog restaurant. Beacause like happiness, hot dogs also=summer.

It’s a small thing, but a rare treat because we don’t usually eat out during the week. In fact, we don’t usually eat out at all. It’s part of the “we’re-poor-so-we-try-to-save-as-much-money-as-possible” financial plan that we’re on.

Anyway, I also wanted to celebrate today with a long run, but I’ve been slacking on my morning time management a far as working out is concerned and I have now waited entirely too long and it is approximately 130 degrees outside right now and thus, too hot to run.

(Ok, fine. It’s not 130 degrees outside, but when I’m running in the middle of the day, on the hills around our apartment, in the sun, because there’s no shade, then, yes, I sweat the same amount as I would if it was 130 degrees. So, to avoid becoming dehydrated after approximately 4/10 of a mile, I’ll just stay inside and workout in the air conditioning, with the only fan we own pointed directly at me turned all the way up to full blast.)

Anyway, none of this has anything to do with what I wanted to talk to you about: our resolutions. It’s time for a mid-year checkpoint! Ready? Of course not, because reading my mid-year checkpoint will make you think about how you’re doing on your resolutions, and if you are anything like me, you probably still have some work to do, huh?

Well, let me spare you the pain and suffering of a failed resolution pity-party and let you share my pain and suffering at our failed resolutions.

Ok, I’m kidding. We aren’t failing, but there is a little room for improvement.

Here we go.

In case you forgot, our resolutions are discussed here and here. (What? You don’t have our newlywed resolutions memorized? Shame on you.) (Not.)

1. Take a weekly walk together. Every week. Hubs hates to go on walks, so this will be tougher for him than me. UPDATE: We go on walks occasionally, about every 2-3 weeks I’d say. We do try to do at least one physical activity together each week though, sometimes two or three. Soccer, frisbee, playing catch, even tennis this week, so I think we’re doing okay on this one. I’ll keep working on it though.

2. Vacuum more. This should be easier with my new Oreck! UPDATE: I have vacuumed more since I’ve had the Oreck than I did before I had it. Still not like weekly or even every other week, though. I could definitely have cleaner floors. Again, I’ll work on it.

3. Work on portion control at meals, even when eating out and dishing up bowls of ice cream…we both need to work on this, as we both love to eat and can get carried away easily. UPDATE: We are doing MUCH better about this! Still, there’s room for improvement and we sometimes give in and pig out when we really want to, but on a daily basis, our meals are much more manageable. And I cook less “special” meals all the time now that I’m working more, so that helps too.

4. Buy a house. I realize this is a tough one, but it’s top on Hubs’ list. Wish us luck! UPDATE: Big news people. BIG NEWS. This is the announcement you’ve all been waiting for: We bought a house! Wooooohoooo! After looking through more than 300 houses online and touring 20 or more in person, one failed offer, and lots of frustration and driving around checking our potential areas, we have found a home that we love and can’t wait to move into. It’s not finalized yet, but we’re very much hoping to close in a couple weeks if everything goes according to plan. And we are overjoyed at spending the next several years, maybe even the next 10-15 years there, or longer! Yup, we love it that much! Let the painting, scraping, sanding, and celebrating begin!

(Photos to come later!)

5. Write at least five things that are just for me. I can worry about what to use them for later, if anything. UPDATE: I have written zero things so far that were just for me. I mean, lots of things I’ve enjoyed writing, but none without a real purpose. I have lots of ideas but not enough inspiration. I’m trying. But I’ve got a ways to go. Yikes

6. Run more races. I’d love to do another half…maybe a full 26.2? I’m young now, and my knees and ankles and hips will only get worse, right? I only ran 1 or 2 in 2011, and they were fun, so I’m ready for more. UPDATE: I ran another half! And it was awesome! I also did the Warrior Dash with Hubs and we’re doing the Color Run in a few weeks. I plan to sign up for some fall stuff, too, but no plans for sure yet. I’d love to do a full marathon, but I’m thinking I need to be training better before I take that on. Still, this one is a success so far.

After the Warrior Dash. We were mud-dy! Wowza. But it was fun!

7. Finish reading 8 books that I ALREADY own and have squished into our bookshelf. I’m terrible about buying new books instead of reading ones I already own but haven’t read. UPDATE: I’ve read 2 books on my bookshelf, but I have to be honest and say I’d already read one of them before, so technically, only one of those counts toward this goal. I have another two started, but they are slow going right now. I’m finally caught up on the mountain of newspapers, though, and the magazines are becoming more manageable as well, so hopefully, some progress will begin there soon.

8. Use more coupons and take advantage of price matching. I also need to do a better job of keeping track of how much we spend and save. UPDATE: Success! Last night was our best night yet, saving about 25.5% of our total bill at our weekly grocery trip. I know because Hubs records it all in a spreadsheet for us to keep track of everything. The way we do it is to only buy things we would buy anyway, but use coupons and price matching when possible. So far this year, we’ve saved close to $200 just by taking the time to do this each week before we head to the store. Woo hoo!

9. Find a church home where we really feel connected to. I miss the fellowship I’ve been so used to my whole life. We need to be surrounded by people encouraging us in our walk. UPDATE: Well, we began regularly attending a church up north by our apartment, even feeling comfortable enough there to begin tithing, but now that we’re moving south, this process will start all over again I guess, which is sad. I’m not devastated though, because I’m not sure the church up here ever felt like “home” as much as a “temporary home,” kind of like our apartment. So, to be continued here.

10. Go on another road trip. There’s something so special about traveling with the one you love, and we love the sense of exploring that comes with driving around on our own. Our honeymoon was some of the most fun we’ve ever had and we’re committed to doing this together again as often as we can. UPDATE: Unfortunately, and yet happily, buying our house and doing some renovation work on it will take up a large portion of our traveling budget for this year, so there probably won’t be a big roadtrip unless I find a great job soon. We’re making ends meet and have taken some smaller trips on weekends so far, something we plan to continue, but we’re not sure we’ll have the budget for a week-long awesome trip like our honeymoon last year. Still, I think it still counts if we go anywhere on a roadtrip, as the resolution didn’t specify length, and because we’re so happy about our house that it’s hard to consider this a failed resolution.

Roadtrips give you excuses to eat at great restaurants inside giant malls, like the Mall of America, where we were here, and drink giant, fun drinks full of fruit and rum. Yum.

Ok, your turn now. I think we’re doing pretty well, all things considered. What about you? How are you doing so far? Any advice for my resolutions? And what are you doing to celebrate Summer? Hot dogs? The beach? Tell me about it, really. I’d love to hear from you!

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