My Christmas Song

I don't like to admit that my Christmas Spirit has been lacking. I've baked, I've wrapped presents, I've read the Christmas story I just can't seem to be consistent with my Christmas Jolly. 

But then I heard this song and I've had it on repeat and it's helped and it's becoming one of my favorites. Especially because Angles We Have Heard On High has always been one of my favorites. So take a listen. The lyrics are awesome. 



The Woes of Two Eldest Planning a Wedding

I'm the eldest in my family. Jerrel is the oldest in his family. We both have a mother and father who have been married for over 20 years and two younger brothers who are in the lovely and ever so popular adolescence age group.

I have learned about birth order a couple different times and each time I find the theories interesting and strangely true.

Senor Smarty Pants and I are not wild and crazy people. Well maybe just not wild. And maybe I'm the crazy one, but we are reasonable people who, obviously by our chosen trades trainings' (nurse and educator), want to help people, want to take care of people. We want everyone to be ok.

For a long time we have expressed to each other that we want a small, quiet, intimate wedding, in a place that fits the previous description. Just our families, just us. However, every time we would breach this topic with one another we would immediately speculate how our families would react. My family would be a go-we have been on many vacations and like traveling to new places. His...we weren't so sure of. Oh sure they'd say ok because it's how we want it but would they really be in? They aren't travelers, and when I say they I mean the boys. It takes an act of Congress to get them off the home place, even if it's only to K-town which is about 80 miles.

We wondered, would they be ok?

Then there was the grandparents. We love them all dearly, we actually would love to have them there. But with six sets, our location being so far away, trying to work around everyone's schedule, lodging, a few different circumstances, and then just logistics of it all we found that all of these factors were defeating our purpose. Simple. Stress free. Not that these people stress us out just planning a trip for so many did.

So once again we wondered, would they be ok?

When Jerrel proposed we knew May was the month. He graduates, I'm free to choose my student teaching placement and for heaven's sake, we have waited long enough! We needed at least a week for this whole shindig. So it wasn't simply "Picking a Date!" But then there was graduation, district track, the cabin wasn't available one week, another graduation, then state track. Most of which were in different weeks. So we talked to our brothers, mothers, and fathers, we ho hummed, and just let it rest. We came to a conclusion on the same day at separate locations and when we came together and talked it just felt right.

But through this whole process it was about, them being ok.

I can hear people now, "Don't worry about what they think or want. It's your wedding." Yatta Yatta people, I hear you people but the bottom line is Senor Smarty Pants and I don't exactly operate that way. It's not about being people pleasers or making sure everyone's happy because that's never going to happen, it is about being thoughtful. Making sure that everyone is at the very least heard and understood. Because until Jerrel and I do what we do, take care of people, even when that doesn't mean "pleasing" them, WE won't feel at peace.

So while we go through this wedding planning stuff we will ultimately do what we think is best and what we want, but we will always wonder, ask, and try our darnedest to make sure everyone is at the very least ok.


Thrifty Thursday

Thriftier; Thriftiest 
1. Thriving by industry and frugality: prosperous. 

It's Thrifty Thursday, the time of the week where I share my thrifty finds from garage sales, antique shops, and of course thrift stores.

Miss Lucy has the privilege of coming inside the house when we are home. She hangs out in the basement with the boys, in the laundry room an porch with the family and occasionally sneaks her way into the kitchen. In the summer she has a chance to cool off while in and in the winter she gets to warm up. 

And because I've noticed she's been rolling up in a ball out on the porch while covering her nose and because I like to spoil her I decided she needed a bed.

Have you ever paid attention to the dog bed market? I kept looking at the dog beds and thinking I could make that. 

So yesterday during the blizzard, I did. 

We have some upholstery fabric samples. I went through the stash, found 4 that coordinated, used an old sheet for the backing and got to work. We had some pillows that we didn't mind parting with for the stuffing and tada! 

I wish I would have filmed Lucy's reaction to this pillow. It was like she knew it was for her and what it was used for.

And now we will never get her off this thing



Whole Foods-My Happy Place

So the weekend Senor Smarty Pants popped the question we pulled into Omaha, on our way to the mall and what did I see? Whole Foods. I've lived a rather sheltered life and never been. 

You know you are a Hippie when you could not care less about going to the mall you just want to walk through the doors of Whole Foods. Annd you get out of the car before it's stopped to get inside.

So the produce section had my heart when I walked in but this area, the buying in bulk spot, took my breath away. The organization, the options, it was just incredible. I think know I need to get out more. And see this guy? This guy cares about his health, and loves buying in bulk and some microbrew beer-we should be friends. 

This section kinda made me giggle. I see commercials for this stuff, I make fun of the people who buy this stuff. But while in Whole Foods I totally understood and thought it was completely feasible to buy this for Lucy. Safe to say I got a little carried away in there. 

So sure it was an awesome trip to a store I've always wanted visit, but I think the thing I will remember the most is people's carts. Now, I'm not going to generalize and say that anyone who ever shops at Whole Foods must be healthy, but guys you should have seen the carts. They were full of produce. Seriously, they had few prepackaged items in them, they had variety and flavors. These carts were vibrant and fresh, not one bag of doritos or toaster strudel in sight.

There was not one parent asking "Bobby do you want ketchup for your pizza rolls?" (By the way, Ketchup on your pizza rolls is a whole other conversation. Seriously?) For the hour, or more if I'm being honest, while wandering the isles of Whole Foods, I couldn't help but feel like I was part of the solution. Simply by being there, by ooohhing and awwwing over products I've read about and would love to try but have never actually viewed in person, let alone laid my hands on. 

I was encouraged to see how busy the place was and how friendly everyone seemed to be. The experience was actually little enlightening. 

So besides the whole getting engaged thing, I'd have to say that visiting Whole Foods was a highlight. A BIG one! 



Hodge Podge

*The Story: On December 1st Jerrel received a mysterious phone call when we arrived to the big city to do some "Christmas Shopping." He stepped outside the car and I overheard him talking about a hot air ballon ride that was getting cancelled because of this:

Unforcasted clouds and moisture. I felt so awful for him, but tried to not show that I had heard anything. That didn't last long so I told him I knew, we had a nice chat about things and he was basically back to normal. That evening we got all dressed up and went to the Boiler Room. This was the nicest place I have ever been and the food was incredible. My mouth is watering just thinking about it.

The BUTTER I may have sold my arm for the butter. This was Food Network kinda food. Food so pretty I didn't want to eat it but I'm oh so glad I did. I love this place, they get as much local food as they can, because of this commitment their menu changes every day based on availability. How fun is that?! 

I cannot go through all the food we ate because well, some of it I couldn't pronounce. I will tell you that the cheese course was an experience. "Cave Cheese" as Jerrel calls it was actually a delight-it was aged in a cave, hence the nickname for it. And the goat cheese? Imagine licking a goat. Not that I've done that but...well you get it. After dinner we left and went for a walk downtown and then he asked. It was wonderful. 

*We have picked the third full week in May, with the wedding on the 23rd. 

*Yes that's a weekday, but we are planning a wedding in Michigan.

*Michigan?! Yes Michigan, we know a family that has a cabin on a lake near Kalkaska MI. We wanted this kind of feeling so it's working out so well. 

* We are hoping to get some pictures taken in SNOW! Come on fluffy white stuff! 

* Why May, so soon? No babies, or other big news and while a story of immaculate conception may make my blog ratings go up, we simply decided that May is the right time for us. 

* We will have a reception sometime in June. 

I think that's everything for now. 



mum's the word monday

Dreaming of a white...well you know...Christmas. 



No. 22

Happy Birthday Senor Smarty Pants- aka Jerrel! Whoa, 1st time I've used his real name. Good birthday present, huh. I guess I could use it, since he's a permanent fixture around here now. 

The picture below is an excellent example of my reactions to him daily. Turn away with "What the heck is going on?" Yet still holding on and putting up with him. Or Vice Versa-whatever.

This picture also shows how ridiculous and weird he is. As well as, how he still seems to have a spirit of a child. All of which are things I love about him.

And this picture, I think, shows his kindness. A quality that he exudes and I sometimes just cannot quite wrap my head around how unending it is.

Today we celebrate this guy with pizza, rootbeer, IPA, family, ice cream cake, and a kitchen gadget he will love! Golly am I thankful he was born.

Happy 22nd Jerrel!



Friday's Letters

Dear Brain, welcome to break. The land of blogging, baking, and...I don't have another "b" word, um doing whatever I want! Dear Caterpillars above my eyes, you are also affectionately known as my eyebrows-get prepared to be downsized ASAP. Dear Miniature Christmas Tree, thanks for taking me back to the old days. Where the day after Thanksgiving I'd drag out my Christmas stuff and decorate my room. This year I decided to add my broach collection to the tree. It turned out cuuuute! Dear Flavored Butter, You might be my new favorite thing-after of course simply, BUTTER. Dear Evan, Good Luck tonight! And just so you know, that little hand motion thing you do when you make a three is ridiculous, awesome but ridiculous. Dear Dance Class, thank you for getting Senor Smarty Pants and I out of the house at least one night a week. And the conflict resolution skills we have gained are priceless!

Have a wonderful weekend friends!



Friday's Letters

Dear Follwers, Friends, and Family, THANK YOU for the calls, texts, messages and little notes of congratulations. You all are just too sweet. This week has been so full of love and for that I am eternally grateful. Dear Mr. Parker, Thank you for being such a well behaved little guy while at dance. Also, thank you for taking out all those bad guys with your torpedos, everyone at the class felt safer with you there. Dear Raw Honey, safe to say, you are a miracle worker, it's been a long time since my skin has been this clear, hydrated, and dare I saw glowing? I'll be blogging about this topic soon guys I promise. Dear Grinch Socks, Thank you for making me feel exactly the opposite of that creepy green guy on you. Also, I decorated two Christmas trees just to spite you. Irony is my favorite. Dear Christmas Spirit, come take over my blog please, I'm a little lacking in that department this year. Sorry about it. Dear Snow, come on over, I miss you, I need you, I want you.

Have a beautiful weekend friends!



Something Sparkly!

During September in my Senior year of high school I received this fortune cookie message after a very platonic group dinner with friends. Senor Smarty Pants was sitting directly across from me. We were friends, nothing more. We became "official" the 25th of September. We went to the Homecoming dance together three days later, the 28th.

Just over four years later, after a nice lunch with Senor Smarty Pants, I received this fortune cookie message. We had just finished our 50th month of being together. Not that we were totally counting or anything...

And that evening I received this.

And while our relationship is based on so much more than a couple of fortune cookie messages, we cannot help but enjoy these little notes and their significant numbers.

Jerrel and I couldn't be more excited and ready for this next step. Your prayers are appreciated as we figure all this stuff out. Hope you are having a beautiful day.