Summer Wrap Up

Howdy! I know it’s been two months since I’ve stopped by to chat so get ready for a serious brain dump.

(warning: this may be the longest post ever. After my ramblings — there are FIFTY pictures of our summer!! WOW)

First — there’s a few reasons why I’ve been so absent. One being that Alex was getting ready to deploy and we spent the summer trying to soak in every moment we could together. I don’t want to say that I was just too busy to write, because that’s not entirely true. Mainly, I think that since it had been so long I felt like whatever I came back to say needed to meaningful. I kept sitting down to write, jotted a paragraph or two and felt that it just didn’t do such a long break justice. Delete, delete, delete. The words just weren’t there. I have some half finished posts that I’m hoping to salvage and get them up.. we’ll see!

Alex left this past week and now that I don’t have as many distractions, I spend a lot of time alone with my thoughts. It’s time to get them out! Writing is therapeutic for me and more importantly, if Alex is able to catch some internet access here and there, I know he really appreciates getting caught up with what’s going on at home and seeing pictures of our boys (aka dogs, whatever — they’re children to us).

We had a great summer full of weekend trips, parties, weddings, grilling, kayaking, visitors, gardening, golf (him), canning (me) and truck projects (him). One thing that really stood apart from previous summers is that we didn’t overload it with house projects. Of course we still have things we want to do with the ol’ house, but we’re definitely slowing down. We’re getting to the point that we mostly have bigger projects left (new wood floors, remodeled kitchen, basement+hall bathroom remodels) and we 1. ran out of steam for such big (months long) projects and 2. didn’t really have the time since we knew some deployments were on the horizon. We actually spent money on ourselves this summer (yay! kayaks!) rather than dumping it into the house. It felt good.

A lot of people ask me about this when I see them and I know it’s uncomfortable for people to bring up, so I’ll just keep you all in the loop. Another thing that changed this summer is that we pretty much hit our breaking point and finally decided to stop trying for a baby right now. Well… considering that Alex isn’t even in the country that’s not hard to believe, right? 😉 Anyway… I didn’t like who I had become. It consumed me. I spent hours and hours every single day researching things; furiously googling supplements, symptoms per day past ovulation, the average amount of months it took for someone to get pregnant after an ectopic. It was bad. I compared myself to everyone around me and constantly felt like a failure. I tried some fertility medicine for a couple months and I was super unpleasant to be around – happy, crying, angry, moody… you never knew what you were going to get. I gained weight, my skin my broke up, I had headaches and was hot all the time. Yeah.. it wasn’t pretty. My breaking point came when a very good friend of mine told me she was pregnant (for various reasons they weren’t sure they could ever have a baby on their own). Of course I was happy for them both, but I was just sad for me. I locked myself into the bathroom at work and did the always attraction silent sob (you all know what I’m talking about). That night as I cried myself to sleep, I had a conversation with the man upstairs and basically told God that I had nothing left to give and that if I was supposed to keep trying right now, I needed some kind of sign. The next morning, Alex had a very open, honest (and brave!) conversation with me and told me that he thought it was a good time to take a break from trying.

So, I took that as my sign and just STOPPED. I stopped going to all my websites, I stopped obsessing and worrying and envying and crying and JUST STOPPED. Can you even imagine the pressure that has been lifted? Probably not. All of the sudden, I’m just not worried anymore. Sure, the want is still there – I’m not sure that will ever go away. But you know what… one day we’ll be parents. It might not be right now, it might not be in the next year… but we will. And now we can focus on us and it feels fantastic. Props to the husband for being willing to have a conversation that he knew would hurt, but would be for the better.

Whew! That felt good to get that out! Let’s see… what else has been going on? Well, the garden was phenomenal this summer. Even in September, it’s still trudging along. To this day, I’m still getting buckets of tomatoes, peppers (jalapeños and bell), carrots, a few cucumbers and even some yellow squash. We built the beds up a bit and added probably 25 bags of new soil. We also tilled the soil and mixed in lots of plant food.

I could go on all day chit chatting, but I think for now — I’ll finish up with some pictures from the last few months.

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Wow! Did you make it through those?? I hope to be posting way more regularly! If not, I’ll have a very disappointed husband when he gets back!

PS — WHO IS EXCITED FOR FOOTBALL TODAY??

Have a great Sunday!!

Howdy Stranger

I know, I know. I’ve been a bad blogger. I’ve left you stranded in the cold for weeks now. My apologies!

To my defense — life just happened. How’s that for a blanket, general excuse? Lately I’ve been falling out of love with documenting my every move and wanted to step back and really enjoy things. I needed to spend more time concentrating at work. I wanted to spend more time completely “in the moment” at home. Let’s just say — I needed to step back for a bit. And, my dears, I’m happy that I did.

Here are a few things you missed out on:

  • I celebrated my 25th birthday. Even though Alex was deployed on the actual day, he went above and beyond to make my day special. We’re talking flowers getting delivered to work and hiding cards around the house for me to find while he was gone. We had a big celebration before he left town, so I was thoroughly loved on. Don’t you worry. Plus, my mom and friends stepped up to the plate and surrounded me with happiness on my big day.
  • Two days after my birthday, I hurt my back during an early morning Body Pump class — doing squats… on the very first track post warm up. I ended up at the doctors — who sent me to the hospital. Boo. I had to take a couple days off work, but thankfully, I’m feeling a million times better now. A big, biiiig thanks to my mom who helped me get up and down for days.
  • We had a random springtime snow storm.
  • Then we skipped over spring and jumped head-first into summer. Weird.
  • Alex came home safe and sound from his short trip/deployment (YAYYY!)
  • He immediately jumped into a pretty hefty woodworking project (more on that later)
  • We’re currently planning an upcoming vacation and are counting down the days! Anyone have any recommendations for Charleston, SC? We absolutely love the down-home southern feel that we experience on our Nashville vacation last year (part one and part two). We’re so excited to get back down south. Not only will we be exploring one of the tastiest southern cities, but we’ll seeing a concert, celebrating our anniversary, AND seeing one of my absolute best friends, Liz, and her manly man.
  • We met a new puppy! No, we didn’t take him home though (more on this adventure later too)

Want to see some pictures?

Good. Me too.

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I have so much more to show you, but when I started to gather all my pictures for this post — I quickly surpassed thirty. Aaaaand… that’s too many for one little post. I’ll be back shortly with more from our latest adventures (including puppy pictures (and I’m talking a 7-week old golden!), doggy play dates, and that big project Alex completed).

Here’s a hint of what the project is…

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Any ideas?

See you soon! Have a great night 🙂

 

Life {lately}

Wow, I just signed in this morning to write a quick little post and WordPress alerted me that today is my third blogging anniversary. Crazy. Seriously, that’s nuts! I’ve always loved journaling, taking pictures, and reminiscing – so, this seems to be a good match for me! I have loved getting to know you guys and sharing our little journey with each of you 🙂 Thanks for making this worthwhile for me! Three years ago we were just dating, living in an apartment and Hunter was still a little pup. Now, we’ve been married for almost two years (where did the time go??), have two dogs and tackle home improvement projects like nobody’s business. It’s funny how things change! Who knows where we’ll be next year or even next week, but I’m happy that I get to share it all with you 🙂

I had a small computer malfunction that has slowed my actual camera picture editing. Thankfully, it seems to be fixed now (yay!), but that means I don’t have all the goodies ready for sharing. Oh well!  I still have a boat load of pictures on my phone that I cherish as well. Sometimes I feel like my phone pictures are a better representation of my life anyway. Not staged, not edited for the perfect lighting… just life.

Before we get started on those, here are a couple quick things that are worth mentioning that don’t have pictures attached to them…

  • For the last two weeks I’ve had a terrible pain in my knee and Alex has had some serious back problems. We’ve almost worn out our heating pad and ice rice bags (thanks, Suzzette :)). We took some time off our normal workout schedule and things seemed to get better. However, this weekend my knee took a serious downward spiral. I’ll be picking up a brace this evening to see if that helps – if not, I’ll be making my way to an orthopedic doctor.
  • Remember how I told you that we were asked if we wanted our bathroom to be on HGTV? Sadly, I found out last week that it won’t work out. Apparently my “before” pictures were not high enough quality. It’s not like I can just re-stage the bathroom and take new pictures, you know? There’s nothing I can do about that! The old bathroom was hideous, dungeon-ey and falling apart. Of course the pictures didn’t look as shiny as the new bathroom. I was pretty disappointed but – maybe next time!
  • Alex is about to finish up his second school semester after taking a long hiatus when he joined the military. This will be his second semester in a row getting straight A’s!! (Fingers crossed that I’m not jinxing anything, although he only has one week left and 99% of his work is already done!)

Okay, here’s what our life has looked like over the last few weeks —

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a+ b.) a gorgeous covered bridge that we visited on a recent trip to WV (although I think this particular bridge was in VA) c). Alex, Alyse and I (oh and a little Bailey and JoJo in the back) hanging out on said WV trip d.) the gang minus a few of us.

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a.) my mom’s super cute pup, Jake. She sent this picture to me yesterday and it’s too cute not to include! b.) Alex alseep in WV with a bed full of dogs. You better believe that I kicked those pups out to get a little room c.) Our collection of golden retrievers (my mom’s two plus ours) d.) My mom’s dog, Jake was so tired in WV that he literally fell asleep while begging for treats.

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a.) my newest toy that I’m slowly becoming smitten with b.) a deliciously perfect pair of rainbows on my way home from work last week c.) the beautiful sunset that quickly followed the rainbows d.) my first sewing project. I made two little bags to carry dog treats in during our walks.

Ribbet collagehuntera through d) a whole lot of Hunterbug love! Including his new antler (A) and a generous ball of dirt and grass that he thought would be fun to bring into bed (C)

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a.) a Nissian Skyline we saw at the Baltimore car show b.) Me sitting in my future mom car. I used to be slightly obsessed with the Honda Pilot, but have recently switched over to the Toyota Highlander. One of these years I’ll actually need a bigger car! c.) an old school Cadillac that was also at the car show

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a through d) more WV doggie shots, including getting completely squished by Bailey (B and C)

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a.) Alex got up early on Sunday and surprised me by making our weekly quiche. Isn’t he sweet?? b.) a night full of whiskey tasting with the man and our good friend, Alyse c.) proof — haha. Alyse + whiskey d.) the cutest picture of Alex and Bailey ever. Ever. Ever. Ever.

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a.) Alex took the boys to get groomed last week. They’re so handsome now! b & c.) little Bailey and his big nose 🙂 d.) how our night ends… every single night!

What have you guys been up to? Have you taken any quick trips to get out of town? Does anyone else in the world take as many pictures of their dogs as I do? Are you getting into any new hobbies? Sewing? Anyone… anyone??