Thursday, June 30, 2011

Wedding Recaps: Road to the wedding

Everyone always warns you that your wedding will not be perfect.  Something will go wrong and you just need to accept it.  The hubby and I discussed that in depth before the wedding, not wanting something small and trivial stuff ruin the day for us.  We spent so much time and effort planning this wedding, and being a perfectionist I wanted things to go right.  I thought I had come to terms with the whole something-will-go-wrong idea and moved on.  However, we had one big problem that really tested my patience.

But to the beginning of the story....

The Thursday before the wedding, we loaded all of our wedding and honeymoon stuff into the car.  We had all kinds of dresses, suitcases, wedding party gifts, programs, decor, you name it we had it.  The car was practically bursting at the seems with stuff!  Although we weren't in a hurry to get out of Columbia, we were anxiously waiting for the tux rental place to tell us our stuff was in to pick up.  Pretty much we just showed up and stalked the store until the stuff was in!  After that we headed along our way to meet up at my in-laws house in Illinois.

While there we got even more stuff ready we had left at their house - centerpieces, aisle runner, etc.  Since Nate's sister was still out of town at a mission trip (she was meeting us in Columbus), he decided to stay in her room for the night so he didn't have to sleep on an air mattress.

(Google Images)

Friday morning we woke up nice and early, packed all the stuff up into the car, and headed on our way to Ohio.  From the in-laws house, Columbus was about 6 hours but we had to go a little north of Columbus to the Delaware County Courthouse to get our marriage certificate.  The wedding was on Sunday and we had to get there before the office closed.  For me it was cutting it close, but we didn't really want to go up an extra day early.  (Do you sense the foreshadowing in this story?)

The drive was nothing exciting, and something we had done many times before.  I was nervous (for many reasons) but relatively calm.  Around lunch time (I am not sure what time it was because this is the point where my memory gets a little fuzzy but we were about half way there), we stopped at Wendy's somewhere in Indiana for a quick lunch.  Nothing like the best cheeseburgers on planet to curb your nervous soon-to-be bride hunger!

We got out of the car, stretched our legs, and I ran inside to use the lady's room.  When I came out I noticed Nate hadn't yet come inside.  Still excited and giddy, I skipped outside to meet him at the car which he kept circling around. I playfully asked him "What are you doing."  The look of pure terror he gave was alarming, and suddenly I knew something was not right.  He mumbled under his breath, "I can't find my wallet."

At that point I am not sure what happened exactly, but I was about to lose it.  I am not sure if I said anything to him, but I do remember walking away towards the street.  I positioned myself on a curb behind a bunch of trees trying to keep my composure, but all that was going through my head was that we weren't going to be officially married this weekend.  His driver's license and social security card were in his wallet, both of which were needed to get our marriage license.  Plus he had hundreds of dollars for our honeymoon, his AAA card for the car rental, and we were flying so he needed his drivers licence for that as well.

(Google Images)

Stressed might be an understatement.  I tried very hard not to ball my eyes out, but eventually gave in.  When he came over to console me I told him to leave me alone and go fix it.  He called his aunt who was driving behind us to see if maybe he left it at one of the rest stops, and I am pretty sure someone called highway patrol at that rest stop.  I came back to the car to talk to the Courthouse to see what we could do.

Nate ended up getting a hold of best friend who hadn't left yet for Ohio.  He got keys to his parents' house from a friend who was watching the cat.  The wallet was sitting on table next to his sister's bed (He blames the fact that he slept in an unfamiliar setting and was rushed in the morning to leave).  His friend then rushed to their church where he was able to fax over a copy of the drivers license and social security card to the courthouse.  Having those copies of his identification, plus his birth certificate that I insisted on bringing just in case, we were able to get the marriage license.

The next 3 hours in the car were torture.  I still couldn't keep from crying and I didn't want to be consoled at all.  I was a mess but was trying to keep in all in because my in-laws were in the car.  Instead of lashing out and saying a bunch of stuff I would regret, I just stayed silent.  I barely even ate my Wendy's lunch, which must tell you I was pretty upset.  Poor Nate probably felt worse than I did.  He kept trying to hold my hand and I keep shoving him away.

In the end it all worked out okay.  The people at the courthouse were extremely helpful.  We managed to get there in time and got our marriage license.  At our wedding ceremony we signed that document and were officially married!

After that whole wallet fiasco, nothing bothered me.  Sure other things went wrong, but I was just so happy that I got to marry Nate that I didn't care anymore.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Almost a Year!

I can't believe that a year has flown by since I got to marry the love of my life!  This time last year we were running around going crazy trying to get last minute projects finished, getting everything packed up, and coordinating travel.  It truly was a crazy, amazing week.  I don't think I have every had such a happy day in my life!

Over the next week or so, I will probably share some fun stories and recaps of what went on behind the wedding.

This year will definitely be a little more laid back.  We plan on visiting some family and having a low key day in St. Louis.  With the move we have a lot of extra expenses coming up, so we decided to not go crazy spending money (plus I was kinda hoping to maybe be able to save the money and go to the beach to celebrate once we get down to NC!).  That didn't stop us for getting each other presents!

Since we aren't very good at keeping secrets, we ended up exchanging presents early.  In honor of the 1 year traditional paper anniversary, I got the hubby tickets to the Cardinals v Reds Game on the day of our anniversary.

The benefit of having a holiday anniversary is we will always be off work, so I thought we could enjoy at least one more Cardinals game before we leave the area.

The hubby, being the awesome man he is, surprised me with some wonderful canvas painting from our professional wedding pictures!

I was so very happy and blown away at the amazing job he did.  He must have known I was dying to have a canvas painting and that there was a serious lack of any wedding pictures in our place.  More than that though, the time and effort that went into finding a place to print them and then working with customer service to get the best picture possible.  I am so lucky to have this man!

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

The many places I call home

Planning a move to a different state isn't anything new for me.  I have had quite a few moves in my short lifetime so far.  I would like to think that I am an expert at packing boxes and fitting everything into a tiny little car.

I was born in Kentucky, but I experienced moving even before I was even born.  My parents found out they were pregnant right before they were going to be leaving Cleveland, Ohio.

(Google Images)

Well technically they didn't actually live in Cleveland.  They lived in the suburbs outside of the city. But since we have family all over the Cleveland area it is much easier to refer to it as Cleveland.

So, that was Move #1 - Cleveland to Florence, KY.

(Google Images)

Yes, that is a water tower that says "Florence Y'all".  No, I have never actually, seriously used the word "Y'all."

My family lived in Florence for 13 years.  I spent most of my adolescent years in Kentucky.

We had two houses.  So I guess that would be Move #2 - House 1 in Florence to House 2 in Florence.  Not a big move, but I think it still counts.

At the beginning of 7th grade, my Dad went job searching and accepted a job in CT.  At the end of the school year we moved there, after spending the whole year building our house.

Move #3 - Florence, KY to Middletown, CT.

We were not in CT very long before my Dad, unhappy with his job, went looking for another.  He found one in Rockland County, New York.  It was half way through my 8th grade year that our family moved to New York.

Move #4 - Middletown, CT to Goshen, NY.

While in Goshen, I finished up middle school and went to high school.  However, before I could finish high school, my family relocated again.  Since my dad was in charge of the company, he made the decision to move it back to Kentucky at the end of my junior year.  Lucky for me, my parents were willing to negotiate with me, and allowed me to stay for my senior year of high school.  I moved in with a friend the next town over, while my family went back to Florence.

Move #5 - Goshen, NY to Middletown, NY.

At the end of my senior year I moved back with my parents before I started college.

Move #6 - Middletown, NY to Florence, KY.

I only was in Kentucky for the summer.  That fall I started college at The Ohio State University.

Move #7 - Florence, KY to Columbus, OH.

There at college, I didn't stay in the same place my whole 3.5 years.  I moved almost every year.  I lived in 3 dorm rooms, 1 apartment, and moved back to my parent's house during a few summers.

At the end of college, I moved with my then fiance to Missouri where he was going to graduate school and working as an graduate assistant athletic trainer.

Move #8 - Columbus, OH to Columbia, MO.

This brings us up to present times.  We have lived here for almost two years, the longest I have stayed in one place in quite some time.  Now in a month we are headed to Wilson, NC.

Move #9 - Columbia, MO to Wilson, NC.  This is hopefully what our new place will be.

Yesterday our application was approved and we are almost ready to sign a lease!

Sometimes I think about all the moves I have made in my life, and how each time I grow more and more as a person.  It really is a great learning experience.  You meet new people, explore new areas, and adapt to new circumstances.  I know that am I the person I am today because of the lesson I learned from moving.  There is no real place that I call home.  Just many places that have shaped my life in a multitude of ways.

I can't wait to see what this upcoming move holds for our future!

Monday, June 27, 2011

And the big news is ....

You know when you have such exciting news and big changes, and you want to tell everyone you know?  That is how I have felt for the past two weeks.  Thus my absence from blogging.

There really has been a lot going on in my life, just nothing I could talk about yet.  But now I can!

 This past weekend, the hubby sent in his signed contract for a new job.  And we are now planning our move to ......

North Carolina!

(Google Images)

Our location will be in Wilson, NC.  If you look on the map above you will see it just northeast of Raleigh.  We are excited, nervous, and stressed all at once.  It really is a crazy feeling to know we are just going to pick up everything we own, and move 16 hours across the country.  We are very luckily to have very supportive families who are excited for us, and wanting to help.  That will make the move much easier.

All along we were hoping to end up somewhere in North Carolina.  While the hubby applied to jobs all across the country (literally), in the back of our heads we were thinking wouldn't North Carolina be great!  We know it will be an adjustment in many ways, but that is part of the adventure.  Wilson is a smaller town than I am used to, but there is plenty of shopping and restaurants to keep me happy.  Plus we will be less than an hour from Raleigh, which means we will be living a lot closer to a big city than we are now!

Right now we are in the middle of securing a place to live.  The plan right now is to move the last weekend in July so that we can be moved in and settled before the hubby starts his new job in early/middle August.  It is much harder trying to get a place without seeing it first, so this process is a little frustrating.  We do have a place in mind so keep us in your prayers that this place works out!

I can't wait to share more things with you all as we plan this move.  I promise I won't keep stuff a secret and disappear for this long again!

Friday, June 3, 2011

Bug Issues

I hate bugs.  Can't stand them.  Any of them.  Spiders, flies, ants, anything.  Gross! Just talking about it gives me the shivers.

Lucky for me we are in the middle of a Cicada infestation in Missouri.  Well I am not sure most people would consider it an infestation, but I do.  What is really going on is that in addition to the normal yearly cicadas in the area, we are also experiencing the 13-year and 17-year cicada cycles at the same time.

So what are we looking at?

Ughhh.  They are creepy looking, aren't they!

Right now our apartment isn't being affected too much, but at my work in Fulton they are awful.  They are infiltrating people's houses and our buildings.  Their shells are just laying around all over the walkways.  I even found one in the downstairs bathroom, and am puzzled how they find their way into every crevice.  All I can hear all day is their "song" which is a constant kind of buzzing noise.  When I walk to my car I feel like they are flying into my hair.

I tried researching them to find out if they were at all useful creatures.  They aren't.  While the do not harm humans they sometimes bite.

What what is even more disturbing about them is that some people in Mid-Missouri are eating them!

(Cicada Pizza via The Columbia Missourian)

A whole pamphlet full of cicada recipes.

I was even told that a local ice cream place in town, Sparky's, made a cicada ice cream that sold out in 30 minutes.

Sorry if this puts a bad taste in your mouth.  I think my skin is crawling now!

Enjoy the beautiful weather and have a great weekend!

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

My new favorite website

I want to share with you a website I have been using for the past couple weeks.  It was really helped me understand how many calories I am and should be eating.

It is called Livestrong.  Right now I am signed up for the free version.  While you don't have access to all of the cool features the website has to offer, there are enough free features to make it worth while.

First, you set your calorie goals.  This is based on your height, weight, age, weight goal, and activity level.  It estimates out a calorie number you can strive to meet each day.
Now this is tracking website that helps you determine how much you are eating and what the nutritional value of the food you consume.  If you don't like writing down everything you eat, then you will not like this website.  I always thought I wouldn't need to do that but it really isn't too hard.  There is a great database of foods with all of the nutritional value already plugged in.  Anything from fruit to brand name products to Walmart's Great Value Brand.  It is all there.  They even had my gummy vitamins!

It then keeps track of what you ate.  Although a big portion of what you look at is the calories, it also gives you an indication of nutrient goals such as fiber, sodium, protein, and sugars.  This was the part that surprised me the most about the foods that I ate.

You can also keep track of how many glasses of water a day you drink.

You can also put in your exercise and the amount of calories you burn.

As you can see in this last screenshot, the top of the page totals your daily calories and tell you how many you have left until your reach your daily calorie goal.  If you exercise at all, it subtracts those calories from your total.

Another fun feature is that you can enter in your recipes into the website, and it will generate a nutrition label.

This is my recipe for Spinach and Artichoke Lasagna Roll-ups.  If you want to full recipe and directions, head over to Beth's Journey where I found this recipe.
This is really helpful for people who like to make their own recipes, or for recipes you find online or in a book that don't have the nutrition labels on it.

When I first tried this website a couple weeks ago, I was not a calorie counter at all. However, I was frustrated that I was working out and trying to eat better but seeing very few results.  I was scared of getting obsessive about counting calories and thought I would just enter in a few days worth of food to see where I was.  Since then I have tracked my calories every day and have enjoyed seeing my progress.

Since I have started logging in every day, I have steadily begun to lose more weight.  I am not on a strict diet at all.  I still eat dessert and go out to eat, but I am realizing that it starts to add up and you have to make choices if you want to indulge yourself.  Some days I go over and I don't beat myself up over it.  I just start again fresh the next day.

Livestrong is a great tool and it even has apps for your iphone or smartphone.  Since I don't have one I still have to do it the old fashioned way, but luckily I am around a computer all day to enter my food.

I am still figuring out how to best utilize this website, but I think it would work for anyone trying to lose weight, maintain their weight, or just seeing how healthy they are eating.

On a similar note, I had a surprise last week.  I came home to an opened package sitting for me on the coffee table.  The hubby saw his name on the package and was curious, but it really for me.  My mom sent me the Rocco DiSpirito Book I mentioned a few weeks ago.

The recipes look amazing! It is so interesting to see what foods to use in place of unhealthy ones.  I bought some ingredients to try a few recipes this week.  However, I am really looking forward to making some of his desserts because he uses some very unconventional ingredients for desserts.  If I make them I will let you know if I give them my seal of approval!

So thanks Mom (since I know you read my blog religiously)!