the unknown.

These two prints are a perfect way to summarize my and Chad's lives within the next couple years. There are so many things that are unknown to us:
where we are going to live.
what jobs we will hold.

Okay, so it's not a lot of things, but I think it's probably some of the most important decisions that we'll make. On Sunday, we talked about moving out of our town and starting our own adventure somewhere else after I'm done with school (granted that'll be in 3+ years) like we have been before we even got engaged. This is a snippet of our conversation:
A: On a scale of 1 to 100, 1 being 'I have to stay here' and 100 being 'I already have my bags packed' how badly do you want to move?

C: Probably 50%.

A: Do you want to know what mine is? ... 90%.

That's our dilemma right now. C was born and raised for 26+ years in the same town, while I moved there when I was in 8th grade. It's never felt like 'home' to me.

I want to move somewhere and find 'home' for me and my [future] husband. Chad is open to the idea of moving and has always told me "I'm not going to decide to do something if I really don't want to." Which was his response when I asked him if he would resent me since I'm so dead-set on moving and starting our own life somewhere else.

I know it'll be a hard decision. Chad's parents, aunts, uncles, cousins, sister...they all live here. Chad's parents live in the same house that his dad lived in when he was growing up. My grandparents, aunts, uncles and [some] cousins live here as well. On one hand, I don't want to leave something so familiar.

But then, on the other hand, I ache to move and discover something new and something that's just ours. I want to be somewhere where no one knows who we are and somewhere where we have to depend on each other to build our house and our married life. It's one of the reasons that I hesitate to buy a house-with that, I feel like we'd be strapped down with a mortgage and then our chance to leave slowly drifts away.

Thankfully, this is something that we've talked about extensively and have prayed about extensively. We trust that God will lead us to make the right decision.

{literally} 5 ingredients.

My sister hates when people use the word 'literally' when they should actually say 'figuratively'. (Example- she hates it when people say "I literally died when I saw what she was wearing.")

But with this recipe, I think she'll agree that it's literally 5 ingredients. Chad and I were looking for affordable, easy meals with few ingredients last winter when we stumbled on this jewel at Good Housekeeping.

Here are the 5 ingredients needed to make Orzo with Shrimp and Feta:
1 1/2 cup(s) orzo
1 tablespoon(s) margarine or butter
1 1/4 pound(s) medium shrimp, shelled and deveined
3 medium tomatoes, coarsely chopped
4 ounce(s) (3/4 cup) garlic-and-herb flavored feta cheese, crumbled

01. Add shrimp, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/8 teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper to a medium non-stick skillet. Add tomatoes and cook 30 seconds, stirring. Remove skillet from heat.

02. When orzo is cooked, drain the pot and add the crumbled feta cheese.

03. Add shrimp mixture into orzo and cheese; mix ingredients together.

04. Enjoy while sipping a glass of white wine and watching your favorite television show. We chose "The Biggest Loser" because you can't watch that show without eating, am I right?!

Bonus: If this is a dinner for two, I guarantee that you'll have lunch for the next day.


october 31st.

Over the last few weeks, Halloween has been a big topic at the daycare center I teach at. We've read stories about Halloween, talked about their "Black and Orange Party" on Friday and they've shared with me what they are going to be for Halloween. They are going to be-Batman, a tiger, a "pumpkinhead", Snow White, a ghost, Spiderman...the list goes on.

When they were telling me what they were going to be, I was surprised that no one say they were going to be a ladybug. That's what I was from the ages 5-10. We had this satin red ladybug costume that we'd were on our backs like a backpack and we'd strap the yellow fuzzy antenna around our heads. My sister, Laura, was the first one to wear it in our family, then the honor got passed down to me, and then my sister, Hannah. I don't think it made the trip from Mankato with us, though. Bummer. I hoped Laura would dress her babies up in a couple years.

{me circa '98 in the beloved ladybug costume}

P.S. I was joking with Laura about having baby U be Martin Luther for Halloween {come on, that would be adorable}, but all I could find was a monk robe for adults. Maybe this will have to be E's costume.


UJ the model.

A couple weekends ago, UJ came to visit with his parents. I love visits like these because it had been quite a while since I'd see them and I had gifts to give my little nephew:

Airplane Bodysuits for Baby

Canvas-Fleece Hooded Jackets

Plaid Quilted Reversible Vests

I love dressing him up!


only -65 days

This is a rather mundane picture of my mother playing piano last week. It's not unusual for me to hear her play music throughout the week (P.S. Listening to my mother play piano is under the "Things I will miss when I move out and get married" list). What was unusual was what she was playing:

See that? 70 days before Christmas and she's playing Christmas carols already. Now, the thing about my mother is that she's usually such a stickler when it comes to Christmas stuff. She never lets us start celebrating Christmas before Thanksgiving.

Hmm, maybe she's bending the rules a little bit this year.

{Thanks for the engagement photo session encouragement! I eagerly await the arrival of our disc and thoroughly enjoyed the session-I got to give Chad kisses all afternoon, what's bad about that?! I will post some of our favorite pictures since my far away siblings read this blog. Stay tuned.)

5.15: according to the knot.

The Knot has a checklist for us that kindly {read that with a sarcastic tone} tells us that there are things that we haven't done yet with our wedding. They put a charming little pink alarm clock next to the things that are 'overdue'...which only leaves me feeling panicked about the amount of wedding things that we haven't done yet.

Yesterday, I had a little meltdown. By thinking about what we still have to get done and the little time we have left (207 days.), I freaked out just a little. When the rare freak fest happens, I always repeat a little mantra to myself: "It will get done. It will get done."

Let me share with you what theknot tells me that I'm overdue on:
01. Set aside blocks of hotel rooms for out-of-town guests.
*Yes, this is done. Yippee! A lot of our guests are either in town or live in The Cities so they'll most likely go home or stay with family in town. We do have some far-away guests that we are inviting-so we hope to accommodate these guests.

02. Brides: Decide on the bridesmaid dresses.
*Not yet. My sister, Laura, is coming into town on Monday to go to a few stores with us. My hope is to have this decision figured out by mid-November so that the girls can order them and we can do any alterations if necessary.

03. Book a baker, choose your wedding cake design, and send a deposit.
*Not even close. We have a couple business cards, but haven't decided on anything. Personally, I'm not big on wedding cakes, so I've been pushing this further and further back.

04. Brides: Collect necessary measurements from attendants or pass along vendor information so that they can order the dresses themselves.
*Obviously not done yet.

05. Start working on your invitation wording and design {and} Finalize your invitation wording.
*I have the wording all picked out, but I haven't even begun to think about the design. I think this will be a fairly quick decision for Chad and I, so I'm not too worried.

06. Finalize menu and service details with caterer.
*We have an idea of what we want (buffet style) but we can't make any decisions until our venue director gets in contact with us about their updated menu.

07. Order your invitations and announcements.
*Puh-leeze. No way is this done. I'm thinking I'll get this done during Christmas break.

{Past Brides: What were your opinions of checklists? Did they actually help? Where they more of a nuisance?}

I can't/won't let a silly checklist ruin this exciting time in Chad and my relationship.

P.S. Future Brides: Check out this Wedding Outlet giveaway from The Perfect Palette. They are giving away a $75 gift cerfificate...you should enter!
{just let me win, 'k?}


5.15: Engagement Pictures

This Sunday, October 18th, Chad and I are heading down to one of our favorite parks in the area to get our engagement pictures taken! We will be working with the talented, up and coming photographer, Jeff, and could not be more excited! {Please, take a minute and browse his website- those images are incredible.}

The forecast says it's supposed to be 53 degrees, partly cloudy and windy. Seems like everything is all set to be a perfect day (except for the windy part).

Let's talk about the wardrobe selection:
I'm planning on wearing my favorite jeans in the entire world-

*my silvers.

*I think I'll also wear the favorite long-sleeved tee from the gap {I have one in almost every color}.

*The headband I purchased a while ago from allorahandmade {I finally have the perfect opportunity to debut it}.

*If it does get too chilly, luckily I'll have my peacoat. I think it'll be a better idea then my white (now dirty white) puffy jacket.

I can't wait to share some of the pictures with all of you!

Sidenote: Check out these engagement sessions! here and here.

m&n: celebrate

On Saturday, we celebrated Chad's cousin's small town wedding. It was definitely a brisk fall day, but it was so nice to be with everyone in Chad's extended family. I do like going to weddings when I'm engaged. Everything is so real and makes me think about our celebration in -7 months. Here's a few snapshots of the day.

Nicole kissing her new hubbie, Matt.

The church. This is the church that Matt and his family have been members of his whole life {I believe.} It's very small {only seats about 100} and if I'm not mistaken, only 1 of 2 churches in the whole town.

The reception decor. I really liked the wall of windows behind the head table and the big, beautiful tulle/twinkly lights combo in the middle of the room.

My soon-to-be hubs and I.

At one point before the dinner, everyone had their cameras out and were snapping away. I got pictures of: 1. Me and the future family {C's parents+us+C's sister and her boyfriend}. 2. My future in-laws. 3. C and his family.


coming soon

Halloween Cards from Egg Press

This weekend, I'll be:

01. snuggling with my nephew {who just sat up by himself today!}
02. chatting with my sister and her hubbie while watching the Twins game
03. eating breakfast with my family on Saturday morning {the first time in quite a while}
04. going to Chad's cousin's wedding on Saturday {the first wedding we've been at as an engaged couple!}
05. debuting my new dress for said wedding {along with my new patent red flats}
06. catching up on the 5+ shows on the DVR {that's what happens when working two nights a week}
07. watching older sis try on her MOH dress {fingers crossed she likes it!}

and finally- praising the LORD that, this afternoon, one of my former professors, Mike, isn't suffering on this earth any longer and joined the saints and His Savior in Heaven. Precious in the sight of the LORD is the death of His saints-Ps. 116:15


a quick observation

{For those of you who don't know, I work at the front desk of a hotel.}

At my job, we see many different people everyday. Just today, I've checked in 18 different families, taken 6 reservations, and dealt with 1 cancellation.

This one woman made me laugh out loud-of course I waited until she left.

Amanda: (after making her and her son only one room key) "Will you need another key?"
Woman: (in her thick Russian accent) "Why it's just me and me son. He won't go any where without me. He is, after all, only 30 years young."
Amanda (smiling): "Okay. Well then you two are all set...Have a nice evening."

Isn't it funny how different other cultures veiw children. I feel like in America, once you turn (at least) 25, your parents are begging you to leave the nest! This woman genuinely seemed like she wanted her son to stay around her all the time!

The whole conversation just struck me as so unusual since I'm so "Americanized" in my way of thinking.


swoon-worthy scene.

Is there a movie that when you are done watching it, you sit through the credits, sigh, and then go back to your favorite scene and watch it about three more times? For me, this movie is Never Been Kissed.

The scene below is one of my favorite chick-flick moments. Josie is waiting on the pitcher's mound for Sam to come give her her first kiss. Watch below:

{Fellas: tonight give your woman a kiss like this-no words, just some passion. She will swoon. Guaranteed.}

While I was watching the clip on YouTube, I noticed "Don't Worry Baby" by the Beach Boys. Below is the fun, old-school video {I'm not sure if this is the actual video, but it's a good subsitute, nonetheless.}


autumn image{s}

These paintings are pretty close to my ideal autumn. Unlike the real autumn, which is cold, rainy, and cloudy-these paintings by Amy Giacomelli are the perfect autumn: warm sunlight, crisp breeze, and soft landscapes.

{Isn't this detailed work marvelous?!}
I don't know if it's the wave of nostalgia that hit me this weekend, or the fact that I've spent 2 months with children at my preschool, but lately I've been thinking about my childhood. I had an incredibly simple childhood and during the winter months I was either playing with Barbies or reading books that I got from the library when my family took a weekly trip there. One of my favorite books to read as a child, was The Little House. I read it today to my class of 15 four-year-olds and it's very rare that they all sit quietly and pay attention to a story {which is what happened today, much to my glee}.

Not only do these children enjoy reading the books that I bring in, they love talking about and acting out movies. The most popular one to act out right now is "Cars". Watching them decide who was going to be Lightning McQueen or Mater, made me think about the recent craze of making childhood books into movies {the most recent one being Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs}.

Another favorite book in my classroom is Where the Wild Things Are due in theaters next Friday. {view trailer here} Are you excited to see this classic book on the big screen?

Speaking of childhood favorites, I do have another question to ask the blogging world. Over the past year, I've been slowly building up my personal library of children books for when I have my own classroom. When you were a child, what were your favorite books to read {between the ages to three and six}?


past and future

This weekend was such a whirlwind of looking into the past and getting ready for the future. I'll tell you what I mean:

the past:
-Friday night included Brandon and Lee, two of Chad's friends from his childhood. Chad hadn't seen Brandon for ages and they spent the whole night reminiscing about birthday parties, silly stories, tandem bikes, and bowl haircuts. {Chad was the definition of 'bowl haircut' when he was in middle school. If he allows it; I'll show you proof.}

-dug through boxes and files containing pictures of Chad for our wedding slide show. This task including cutting into my soon to be mother-in-law's picture frame and basically ruining it {cringe}. Must get her a new one for Christmas.

-received my baby blankets and quilt made by my grandmothers on Sunday. I was given them since I'm moving out in a little over 7 months. {I will post pictures of these beauties at a later date.}

the future:
-Sunday afternoon was filled with going to a local bridal fair and eating more cake than I care to admit. I went with younger sister, Hannah and my mom and we spent the afternoon filling out giveaway sheets and sweating through our coats squeezed into a building with probably 500+ brides and MOBs. I did find some cake vendors and entered some really cool giveaways, so it wasn't an epic fail.

-spent Friday afternoon packin' up some of the old school supplies that I know I won't need for the next 7 months. {I will not freak out, I will not freak out...}

-ordered L's bridesmaids dress for her to try on...fingers crossed that this is the one everyone likes.

That was my weekend-a wave of nostalgia as well as little flutters of anticipation for the future.


embrace the girly-ness

Joanna, of A Cup of Jo fame recently posted a question on Smitten, the relationship blog on glamour.com, about what makes women feel feminine.
I thought I'd add a few to the list:

01. smooth legs {it's the actually making them smooth part that I don't care for}
02. wearing a dress {even though I don't do this often, I still very much enjoy the feeling of having a dress on}
03. curling my har {again-don't like the process; love the result}
04. perfume {like the one I currently have on}
05. my relatively long hair {I'm growing my hair out for the wedding and I haven't had hair this long since kindergarten, but I am finding that I like it more than my short hair days}
06. my makeup brushes that were a Godsend
07. glossy lips
08. sweet pea and violet body wash {courtesy of Suave}
09. a manicure {only have ever had one thanks to my sister, but I've never felt more girly}
10. girly movies {Ever After, Never Been Kissed, Pride and Prejudice...to name a few}

What makes you feel feminine?
Here are some feminine photographs for your Saturday afternoon:

All found courtesy of etsy.com: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5.


The falling leaves drift by the window
The autumn leaves of red and gold
I see your lips, the summer kisses
The sun-burned hands I used to hold

Since you went away the days grow long
And soon Ill hear old winters song
But I miss you most of all my darling
When autumn leaves start to fall

Now I'm ready for fall.

{video found here}


Audrey=beautiful. I dream of looking that good when I'm her age. I think she's the only face that can have gold glittery eyes and still look stunning.
This inspired me to find some glittery pictures-funny how the only thing I found were shoes that would look lovely on my wedding day...

1. 2. 3.

What kind of future wife would I be if I didn't find my groom some shoes too?
{These make me think of Michael Jackson.}


Related Posts with Thumbnails