Monday, July 14, 2014

Our Story

Three years ago I met the husband on a blind date, and exactly a year later he proposed! 

Obviously this day holds a special place in my heart, but I don't think I've shared either story here on the blog. Y'all hear from me all the time, so I thought it may be more fun for James to share how we met and I'll share our proposal story!

How We Met: July 14, 2011

Erin, a former coworker of mine, had been telling me about this girl she was in bible study with who I "had to meet" for weeks. She said she thought the two of us would be good together which, to this day blows my mind that she was able to see the potential chemistry between a UGA and Georgia Tech grad. I was a pretty shy guy and definitely not the type that would ever be willing to go on a blind date but something about this one made me want to go out on a limb. I also may have gotten a glimpse of her on Facebook and that may or may not have influenced my decision to ask for the 1st date. I spent hours upon hours trying to find the perfect place for the blind date and settled on Nine Street Kitchen. I waited on her in front of the restaurant and when I saw her I remember thinking "she's way out of my league." I could tell she was nervous by the way she made the intro short and sweet and immediately headed inside to find a table (I literally said "hey" and ran inside... NBD I'm just awkward like that).  All nerves seemed to settle very quickly though. We had such a great time that we closed up the restaurant that night and had to be asked to leave as they were mopping the floors. It was a great 1st day especially considering I almost stood him up. 

Our Engagment Story: July 14, 2012

I always thought I would know when the proposal was coming because my mom and sister wouldn't be able to keep the secret. They proved to me that they are much better liars then I thought! Also, my dad was in Argentina on a trip the weekend we went to Highlands, and I figured he would at least want to be in the country when I got engaged. So, with all that said, I was not expecting anything to happen that weekend.

James and I decided to go to Highlands, NC to celebrate one year together. We talked about driving to the top of Sunset Rock to watch the sunset before dinner reservations on Saturday night. This had actually been my idea, so I was never suspicious. I played right into his plan. I'm so predictable. It rained all day Saturday so I was becoming less and less thrilled about our pre-dinner plans, but James really wanted to go, so I wasn’t going to make a big deal out of it.

When you get to the top there are two paths to get onto the rock. I was super focused on one of the paths worrying about what the 20 people who were already there and had hiked up were going to think of us in our nice dinner clothes. James grabbed my hand and spun me around to the other path. In front of me was a path lined with candles. I told James we couldn’t go that way because someone had set it up for something special; he smiled and kept walking. I’ve been told I kept saying, “I’m scared." "What are we doing?" "Is this okay?” Once we followed the path onto the rock there was a small table with flowers and champagne. My first thought was that James was doing something nice since he hadn’t gotten me a card earlier for our 1 year (it was all I asked for). 

James started talking and I remember trying not to laugh because I knew he was saying nice things but I couldn't concentrate on what he was saying (he later told me what he said and it was really sweet). Then he got on one knee and asked me to marry him. I remember nodding my head, and he swears I actually said yes.

After crying and hugging we went over to a bench and he showed me a video he had made with pictures of our first year together and how he asked my parents and sister for permission to marry me! I cried through the whole thing! Then he told me to call my parents. If I wasn't crying hard enough already this really set me off. There was so much crying I could barely get words out. I told my mom we were driving home at midnight to celebrate with them (because obviously that makes sense?). 

Then I called my dad and left a message on his phone. I could barely talk. At this point I got really sad that he wasn't in the country and I couldn't talk to him :(

About five minutes later James told me to turn around and my mom, sister, and his whole family came out! Following them was my dad who had flown home early from his trip (I'm crying even now as I type this)! At the sight of him I totally lost it. I was beyond the point of the “pretty” cry! The whole thing was so much more than I ever could have imagined! 

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Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Anniversary Trip: Nashville

While Nashville one of the husband's favorite cities, I had never been before. He's raved about how great the city is and I'll be honest I was a little skeptical at first. I mean, just in case you haven't looked at a map recently, Nashville is nowhere near the ocean. In order to be classified as a great city in my book there needs to be an ocean . 

Well, the husband wins this one. Nashville is awesome

The music is great. You can hear live music anytime every day of the week. Once you're downtown, it's a walking city. Park your car and walk to where you wanna go. And the food... oh the food, but we'll get there.


I don't always like playing tourist in new cities. I don't like people knowing I'm visiting. It's okay to judge me it's a super odd quirk. I think it has something to do with living in a vacation city where we made fun of tourists. However, for this trip I put my weird fears aside and fully embraced the tourist role. We checked out the Ryman Auditorium and the Country Music Hall of Fame. Both pretty obvious stops for us since we love Nashville (James has a serious crush on Hayden :) and country music.


Country Music Hall of Fame

Let's get real honest here. I judge cities by the food. It's gotta be good and not just the fancy resaturates, but the little hole in the wall places too. Nashville did not disappoint at all.

Puckett's Grocery and Restaurant:
Puckett's is a restaurant downtown that I'm assuming was at one point a grocery (hence the name), but has since been converted into a restaurant. It's southern BBQ and it's good. We went for breakfast and lunch and were impressed with both. For breakfast James got the "Southern Stack." Stick with me for a second, it's a sweet potato pancakes, fried apples, bbq pork, a fried egg, and home fries. It sounded awful. It was wonderful. I hate sweet potatoes, but I loved these sweet potatoes pancakes.

Cantina Laredo:
Probably my newest favorite restaurant. The tuna tacos are to die for and fish tacos that rocked my world. I need them to open one of these in Atlanta ASAP. There really aren't adequate words for this restaurant other than we're still raving about this meal.
Cantina Laredo

Great bakery! They serve Kolaches, a Cezch pastry most often served sweet with some fruit filling, but sometimes made savory. Think doughy yeasty goodness. James stuck with the fruit variety and I got a savory one with sausage, jalapenos, and cheese. My mouth is watering just thinking about these.

I had to give a nod to one of my favorite cities and check out Husk for our anniversary dinner. There other location is in Charleston and I've always wanted to try it out, so I'm glad we got to here. It was everything we hoped for. The drinks were incredible, the charcuterie appetizer was our favorite part, and our entrees were really good. Farm to table restaurants always get bonus point in my book.

My entree: Southern Veggie Plate: embered okra, heirloom tomato salad, sea island pea succotash, fried squash blossom stuffed with cheese, and mushroom grits with a poached egg. So much food and so good!
Veggie plate

We went against tradition and didn't eat our wedding cake. It accidently got thrown out when dad was cleaning out the elk freezer (don't even ask) a week before our anniversary. Whoops! Oh well, makes for a good story :) and who needs tradition anyway.

It was such a wonderful trip and the prefect to celebrate being married for a year!
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Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Hey July!

So, it's July. As of today we are officially half way through 2014. Dear Summer, please slow down!

We have some fun things planned for this month, so I'm excited and hoping that this month goes by just a little less quickly than the last. But, before we get to July let's look back on those June goals. 

Overall, I would say June was a pretty good month. I loved loved loved celebrating our 1st anniversary and have really enjoyed get settled in our home. Somewhere along the way it stopped being the "new house" and started being "home." It makes my heart so happy knowing how many memories we will make in this place and how we will continue to make it ours.   

1. Spend more time with GodAbide Journal 
This one gets a big check! It's an 8 week long journal so there are still 4 weeks to go, but so far I'm right on track. There is so much that I'm loving about this study. I love that each chapter is a week long,  so there is lots of time to really dig deep into the theme of the week. The videos that go along with the weeks are also so great. I can't wait to continue this into July.

2. Take care of myselfExercise & walk after dinner
Eh, I guess this one gets a super small check. We haven't been walking after dinner, but I've done an okay job getting up and going walking. Going to expand on this one and get a little more specific for July.

3. Be intentional with my husbandTV free dinners
Big check! We've had many TV free dinners in spite of the World Cup. Apparently my husband is a big soccer fan now. Never saw that one coming, but I digress. I really love the chance to sit down at the table and talk about our days. I love that it's becoming routine to sit down at the table and dinners in front of the TV only happen on rare occasions.  

4. Go on an adventureAnniversary trip
Completed and it was awesome! Can't wait to share all about it tomorrow!

5. Be intentional with othersSpend time with friends
I love that I made this a goal last month, and I love even more that I was able to accomplish it. One of the best things about have a home is being able to host friends and family. I so very much want our home to be a place where people we love come, hang out, and feel comfortable. Not only did we get to have one of my best friends over this past month, but I also got to catch up with a few friends who live out of town who I haven't talk to in way too long! This month our families are hosting a house warming party for us, so I can't wait to open our doors to even more of our friends. 

1. Spend more time with GodAbide Journal and Studying the Names of God
4 more weeks! There is also another bible study that Nicole and Rachel are hosting that I'm seriously thinking about joining in on. 

2. Take care of myself: Exercise Routine
Routine. I work best with routines and schedules. This month my goals is routine with moderation. I am trying to learn that it's okay not to work out everyday. So, the goal this month is to work out 3-5 times a week for at least 30 minutes. The inner crazy athlete is screaming at me that that's not enough, but the much healthier rational side of me is insisting that it's just fine. Routine with moderation.

3. Be intentional w/ others: Stop Saying Sorry
Well, kinda. Have y'all seen this video? It really hit home and even more so when the husband mentioned the other night that I say "I'm sorry" too much. I'm starting to realized I say "I'm sorry" for all the wrong reasons and when I need to say it it's so much harder to say. So, July is my month of not saying sorry when I don't need to and saying sorry when it needs to be said. 

4. Go on an adventure: Beach Trip(s)
Adventures for this month include lots of sun, sand, and ocean water. We'll be on Hilton Head Island and at Holden Beach. I. Can't. Wait. 

Here's to a happy July everyone!!
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