Thursday, June 26, 2008

This is the real deal.

I'm watching Rachel Ray- her talk show! Not the cooking show....a talk show. Who knew?

I found a couple of pictures from this summer that I thought needed to be added.

Here we are- ready for take-off. We look like the real deal, hey? And this was after a cousin's wedding on Saturday night.
We had our engagement photo session last night in GI. We had a lot of fun and got some great shots. There are a few that might surprise some of you....can't wait to show them to ya'll.

I'm going to extend the invitation again. Since we have so many friends who live far away, I'm reminding you that once Nate and I have our apartment, we'll have a place for you to stay. So, PLEASE, come visit. We would love to have you.

I cannot WAIT to be Nate's wife!!

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

when did this happen?

The more time I have to slow down and process life, the more I wonder, "when did this happen". I've been itching lately to get to a coffee shop to read, have a quiet time, slow down and process through things. I've wanted to invite someone to go- to sit silent with me or even at a different table. But the more I think about it, the more I realize that so many of my "coffee shop grab-and-go" friends don't live here anymore. And as I look back, it's been a process that's lasted years. It's been so slow and gradual...that I'm just now understanding that so many of "my people" aren't here. I can't just jump in the car with them and go. This is one of those facts about growing up that sometimes makes swallowing difficult.

Carissa- Kentucky, Martha- Michigan, Melissa- Georgia, Amber- Omaha, Meg- San Diego, Ashley- Kansas City, Lindsey- San Diego.... and what's more, the people who are still here, most of them have real-life, adult jobs that keep them busy during the day. And if that's not it, it's beautiful little children that keep them home...

I'm not complaining. I'm not wishing for things to go back the way they were in college. I'm just understanding now that things change. Life doesn't ever stay the same. Friends move. People have different schedules and getting together for an afternoon of reading or writing just isn't as doable as it once was. It's this whole growing-up thing that I'm not sure I'll ever be used to. It's life and it's happening. We embrace these moments that we have now; these seasons. We learn in them all. We grow through them. And we become stronger.

Maybe today I need to go at it alone. Maybe it's time to take a different friend who's never leaving. The one who's been waiting for me to slow down and spend time in the word. The Lord has a way of being coincidental like that. :)

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

non-fat, sugar-free, half-caff, extra shot, extra hot........blah, blah, blah..

Guess where I am? The title should give it away, come on.

I've been told that some of you are checking my blog on a daily basis, and I've failed you. I do not post every day. I appreciate your diligence, but cannot promise that I will start blogging every day. Sometimes I just don't have much to update you on.

Things are going well. Brook was feeling a little under the weather today, so she went home a bit early, which is why I'm here a little later than I had planned. And because of my extra chunk of time, I have a bit of time to write. :)

The lunch hour in the coffee shop is generally pretty slow- which leads to much reading and crossword puzzles. I can't do them without Brook, I don't have the details memorized like she does....she's one of those "remembers random facts" type of person. I am not. I won't remember a detail two minutes after you tell me. Ask for a big picture. I can do that.

A girl with very tight pants is walking in. Must go.


Friday, June 20, 2008

Rita in Daisy Dukes

We bought a table!!! It's beautiful. We went shopping last night with Nate's family after Emily's birthday dinner....and found a great deal on a table very similar to what we had in our minds. It's tall, dark, and handsome....and in order to see it, you will have to invite yourselves over for dinner- after September 13th. We'd be happy to oblige!

In other news, we're 6 addresses away from completing our guest list. Getting addresses is a LOT of work! Eeeesh!

I had a purpose to this post. I really did. I can't remember what my big news was going to be... so I guess I'll have to stop by later for an update. Have a great weekend!

OOH! I just remembered. It's a fantastic recipe for pasta....easy and as follows:

2 lbs. tomatoes- chop and remove innards
4 cloves garlic minced (you could do less)
1/8 (or so) cup olive oil
salt and pepper
1/2 cup fresh basil chopped.

Combine all and let the juices marry for a couple of hours. I let mine sit all afternoon.
Make a box of pasta- I used spirals, but anything works. Prepare pasta as directed and toss in the tomato mix when you're ready to eat.

I also made a chicken breast that I chopped up and threw in for some protein. I seared that in olive oil and garlic, and then used some white wine to simmer it in until we were ready to eat. Chicken was tender and juicy and perfect.

This recipe also works best when you accidentally use your fiance's roommate's wine and drink it, thinking it's yours.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

The children's laughter sang

I'm listening to a new summer mix from my great friend, Meg. Thank you, Meg. I love it.

This is going to be a short post. I just wanted to give a shout out to my good buddy, Chris, in Japan. He gave me the book, "Redeeming Love" by Francine Rivers, maybe a year or more ago. It sat on my shelf for months and months...every once in a while I'd pick it up in an attempt to delve. I couldn't get into it for the longest time. But NOW! Now I'm 2 days in and halfway through. I probably would have finished it by now if I had no other duties in life. So Chris.....thank you. I love it. The timing is perfect. Now I'm really able to enjoy and learn from this book.

Hope this finds everyone well.....

Thursday, June 5, 2008

to reawaken

It's been too long since I've written. Really written. Some of you know that writing is one of my favorite things in the world. I love the feel of words, the way they seem to crawl out of my head and place themselves on paper (or computer) when I give them the chance. Often, and sadly, I do not allow this opportunity. I can be witty and whimsical with daily blogs, but it's rare that I really sit down to watch the world; to live in it; to listen and smell and really see things.

So. I will attempt to slow down a bit more. I will try to get out and go somewhere just to be. Once I get into the groove, I'm really good at relaxing and making time for these things that are so good for my heart. I think working in a coffee shop has caused me.....or rather, I have let working in a coffee shop affect me in a way that doesn't have to be. By the end of a shift, I'm ready to get out; to get away from the atmosphere and be someplace else. But I'll just have to venture to different places- new coffee shops that I haven't discovered yet- or old coffee shops that I spent so much time in studying in college. I think I've felt a loyalty to my store- but that's silly. I can go other places. After all, there is that snow monkey plum iced tea just waiting for me at the coho. Martha, I will think of you every time I go.

And as for writing- whether it be in my journal or here on my blog, I'll do better. I'll write again. I'll slow down, and I'll really listen.

100 days!

We've got 100 days until the wedding. It seems like the first month has gone SO FAST! It's been a month today, now that I think about it. Happy 1 month of of being engaged, Nate!

We've got all the big things nailed down. The church, reception hall, DJ, florist, caterer, cake lady, dress (bought and hanging in my room), photographer, pastor, musicians, clothes for wedding party decided, honeymoon booked, wedding night hotel booked, hotel blocks reserved for out of town guests, gift registries completed, guest list narrowed down......I could go on and on.

The guest list. How awful trying to decide who we could "cut" out of the list. The church is small- only seating for 230....and we've got so many people that we want to be there. Plus, we have large families. It was a good task for our 5-hour drive home from Minnesota this weekend. We narrowed it down to the bare minimum....sadly, cutting out some of our good friends. So if you're some of those people who don't get an invite to the ceremony, know that it was a heart-wrenching task, and had we had more room to work with, you surely would have been invited. Good news is, the reception hall holds more we have a bit more room to work with there.

We found an apartment that we really like. One of us will move in right away in September and the other will trail closely behind on September 13th. :) It'll be so much fun to be roommates! And those of you who are out-of-town friends, know that we specifically found a 2-bed/2-bath so that you can come visit and have a place to stay. Please, take advantage of us. (After Sept. 13th, of course!)

All that said, I'm still waiting to hear on a teaching job for the fall. It's a good thing that I have so many other things to think about- otherwise I might get a bit restless waiting. I have hope that there is a place for me for this fall. If you think of it, prayers are always appreciated.

Hope this finds you all well. Take care.