Sunday, September 16, 2012

First trip home as a married woman

What an interesting and amazing experience to travel "home" as a married woman! A lot has happened in the past week and I am trying to process it all.

I left my husband at our home. We have been married for a mere three months (4 months on Tuesday). Before we were married we lived an hour away and would see each other on the weekends and sometimes through the week. I was more sad than I expected. I thought I would feel like I did when I would fly home when we were engaged. This time was different.

Home was refreshing, relaxing and calming. I left all my work and school stressors in NC. I wanted my trip home to be a trip that would energize me and renew my spirit so I would come back to NC ready for the last push until graduation. I got to thinking I want to create a space in our home that provides rest and relaxation for myself, my husband and our loved ones that come to visit. This got me thinking about what it is at my parents' home that provides that for me. Consequently, I saw a piece on The Today Show about The Happiness Project and Happiness at Home, two books by Gretchen Rubin.

What is it that makes me happy?
My husband
Exercising and having me time to think listen to music and process life
My Hanover friend
Feeling loved
Sitting on the beach and relaxing listening to the ocean

A theme in the above items is "me" time. I call the shots, I determine the mood, I renew my spirit and soul.

When I am engrossed in school work, I often put my needs second, third, even tenth on the list. This is often why I long for trips home or to the beach. These moments allow me to reflect on my life and the moments that have occurred between trips home. I am able to process and be grateful for my husband and our life in NC.

Although it was difficult leaving my home it was needed for me to renew and recharge my spirit.

My goal over the next few months left in 2012 is to strive to take time for myself and continue to make our home a place where we can renew and refresh our spirits.

Friday, September 7, 2012

Labor Day Weekend

Recently, I had to visit our neighbors to pick up some mail.  Our neighbors, Shirley and Frank, are so sweet!  I knocked on the door and they gave me my mail, and instantly invited me in.  I sat and chatted with them for a good 30 minutes before heading home.  Something Shirley said really stuck with me.  She said, "Keep a journal of your marriage and life together, and label your pictures."

I had been feeling like summer was over, and I have experienced 3 months of marriage without realizing it has flown by.  I have been feeling like I wanted to slow things down and enjoy my life with John.  Shirley, gave me the best piece of advice at the perfect moment.  Funny how God puts people and experiences in your life right when you need them.

Over Labor Day weekend, John and I decided to get away.  I wanted to go on a mini vacation before I left for Indianapolis to visit friends and family.  I stressed and stressed about if I was making the right decision with my thesis defense coming up and the money it would cost for a crappy hotel room and food. My wheels started turning.

I could find a cheap hotel that would allow us to bring Missy, I would pack Pumpkin bread for breakfasts, and snacks so we could go without eating lunch.  I booked the hotel on Thursday and was packed easily by Friday morning.

John surprised me by coming home early because he had cancelled tennis practice.  We loaded up the car, box fan and all and headed to Topsail Beach.  I didn't mention to John that the last room available for dogs had 2 double bed until we were already on the road.  He thought it was funny and said Missy could have her own bed.

After a short hour and a half drive we were miles away, just the two of us.  I felt like it was a second honeymoon.  I was able to relax, feel the wind, and the warmth around me.  I have to constantly remind myself to breathe and experience the moment instead of rushing through to the next big thing.  We walked to the nearest restaurant (1 of 3 in Topsail Beach) for some pizza and a celebratory beer.  John and I were celebrating his first full week of teaching at a new school, and celebrating 1 year since John asked me to marry him.

After a relaxing dinner with lots of laughter about nothing and everything, we walked the short block from our hotel to the beach so I could hear and see the ocean.  It was absolutely beautiful with the moonlight hitting the waves as they were crashing in. John and I sat side by side, as I was overcome with immense gratitude.  I was so grateful that John got a new job, grateful that we were married, and grateful for the life God has provided for us.
This picture does not even do it justice, how beautiful the ocean was.  It is moments like this where I am reminded that God is greater than anything I am struggling with.

John and I just relaxed that evening and spent the rest of the weekend enjoying each other and the beach. Although I became anxious about my upcoming presentation near the end of the weekend, I was constantly reminded of what a wonderful man I had married.  I honestly don't know what I would do without John by my side. He provides so much strength and support that I didn't even realize was missing from my life.  The entire weekend, we just kept looking at each other saying I am so glad we are married, I'm so glad you are my husband, I'm so glad you are my wife.

So I have made a resolution to write more about our lives.  I want our children and grandchildren to be able to look back at our lives.  I would love to have more information about my grandparents relationship, and my parents relationship before my sister and me.  Shirley and Frank are onto something, and I think I should be hanging out with them more.

Love this instagram picture!  It looks like it is straight out of a 1970s photo album from my parents.

Two double beds!

Missy loved the beach and the wind from the upcoming storm.

Have you ever seen a cloud like this?

The picture of us during the summer.  I want a picture of us during each season of our first year of marriage.

The view from our room
A huge storm was brewing, and we barely made it back after getting ice cream from a run down putt putt.

Friday, May 25, 2012

One Week of Being Married

Well, we did it!  We are officially married, and it feels awesome.  I didn't think that it would actually feel different, but it does.

Immediately after our wedding, my dad picked us up at 6am the next day and we headed off to our honeymoon.  We stayed at Cheeca Lodge and Spa in Islamorada, FL.  It was absolutely beautiful, with lots of vegetation.  We were only there for four days, but it was so nice to finally celebrate together.  The first night we stayed at the lodge and split a pizza and some drinks.  We loved seeing everyone at the wedding, but were ready to just decompress and have some alone time with little interaction with other human beings.

The next night we went to Chef Michael's.  Let me tell you, the food was out of this world.  I have never been so satisfied with a meal.  When we got to Chef Michael's the bartender came up and said congratulations and brought us a bottle of champaign.  John had called ahead to order the champaign to surprise me.  I felt so special.

The final night we went to Ma's for some fish tacos and fish and chips.  After dinner, we got dessert to go so we could walk across to the Gulf of Mexico side to watch the sunset.

Now we are back to good ole Eastern North Carolina, and starting to establish routines again.  This is when it felt real that we were married.  I finally realized that my classroom work for my Master's was over.  I left my friends that I had made at ECU.  I realized I won't be packing up my things to head back to Greenville on Sunday evening.  I realized this is the beginning of the next chapter in my life.

I get a little sad at each moment in my life when I have a huge life change.  I am sad to leave the past life behind.  Whenever change happens I worry that I won't take the lessons I learned with me, or the memories with me.  However, if history repeats itself (which it always does), then I will be a better person because of the lessons and the memories.  I will always have the memories, and I will always have the messages behind the lessons.

I also get anxious to see what the future holds after a huge life change.  I want to know now what I am going to have to face, and what I will learn at the next step.  I don't really like surprises, and I like to plan for what is ahead.  Again, if history repeats itself (which it does), then I will faces those obstacles, surprises, and joys.  This time, however, I will faces those obstacles with one more person in my life, John.  He keeps me grounded, calms me down when I start to get anxious, and he makes me see the forest instead of the trees.

I believe with John by my side as well as my friends I have made along the way, and my family, I will be able to meet this change, learn new things, and make memories along the way.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

I'm Getting Married

OMG!  I can't believe it.  It has finally happen, finally come.  I am getting married tomorrow.  I am filled with excitement, anxiety, nervousness, joy, and a little bit of sadness.
Image Courtesy of bobbi+mike

Three years ago I didn't think I would be able to ever find someone to love.  I am excited because I have finally found the one in whom my soul loves.  I have found someone that makes me smile when I don't want to.  I have found someone who will never leave me, and will treat me with the utmost respect always.

Image Courtesy of bobbi+mike
I am anxious because of the unknown.  I have never been married before, but I am look forward to doing life with John.  I know that we will be able to conquer anything together.

Image Courtesy of bobbi+mike

I am a little sad because I am leaving another life behind.  I don't do well with change, but I am so pumped because I will be venturing into a new life with John by my side.

Image courtesy of bobbi+mike

I hope I am able to feel everything tonight and tomorrow and remember the feelings and joy over the next few days.  I also hope that John and I will be able to always put God first in our relationship.  I hope that John and I will be able to raise children as well as my parents raised me.  I hope that in everything I will be able to breathe.  I hope that I will be able to see more of the forest and less of the trees.
Image courtesy of bobbi+mike

Tomorrow I am getting married!!!!!!!!

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

How did I do?

Well, I went over 2000 calories. This is really easy to do for me. I had eaten close to 2000 calories by dinner and then went and exercised. I came home and was hungry, so that put me over. I am still on track for achieving my goal. I only said I would record everything I was eating for five days, one day down.

I drank 80+ oz of water yesterday, and I exercised for 40 minutes. I treated myself by reading Real Simple instead of school reading.

Today, I will continue to log my food, lift and drink water.

Monday, January 30, 2012

My Week Goal

After a week of indulging in pizza, beer, and wings I believe it is time to get back on the healthy train. I often get into the mindset that I am doing well on my diet and exercise and take a step backwards. I feel like I got this, and then indulge. Instead of ruminating, like I usually do, I am going to move forward.

This Women's Health article has really helped me put things into perspective. 7 Ways to Stop Craving Junk Food. Instead of beating myself up for not eating healthy this weekend, I will accept it and move on. Today is another day, and my actions of the weekend do not define me as a failure. I will set a small goal for the week, and then set another goal for the next amount of time.

I choose my goal to be a week because I know it will be difficult to do with the weekend I have planned, but I wanted to challenge myself. My bridal shower is this weekend in New Bern, and my mom and gramma are coming down to see me try on my wedding dress for the first time!

Here are my small goals for the week.
1. I will record my food intake 5/7 days this week, including one weekend day, trying to stay around 2000 calories.
2. I will lift 3/7 days this week, and record my exercises in my calendar.
3. I will drink 80 oz of water 7/7 days.