February 24, 2011


There's a lot of preparing going on around here.

Preparing a house to be our home.
Preparing for a huge and awesome party to celebrate our wedding.

Fun things, but not the most important things.

I went out with a friend last night who is an awesome, wise, kind, godly lady. I loved hanging out with her because, even though we chatted about the fun stuff like wedding dresses and new kitchen tile, we spent most of our time talking about the real stuff. She told me about her family, about being married and loving her husband. She asked me great questions about how I'm preparing to be a wife.

That's what I'm most excited about, not the wedding, the marriage. I left excited and feeling a little like I better do some studying or something, but also remembering that we're not alone in our preparation. We have an entire community here to love, counsel, guide and encourage us as we go. Number one on my list: pray. Also, read Sacred Marriage (a suggestion from another wonderful wise lady I know and love).

Any other book or resource suggestions for an engaged gal like me?

February 22, 2011

Too Full

Turns out that I'm one of them. Those crazy girls who loose their minds when they get engaged. All of the sudden I can't find my keys...ever. I forgot to return a few emails. I was late to meet my friend for breakfast. It's ridiculous. My brain has just been too full.

The details are swimming in my head and there aren't enough post-it notes in the word to rescue me. I admit that even though I don't want to be a freak of a bride, I had my first melt down the other day. A fabulous party for 300 people on a budget had me worried. Never to fear. I did want any girl would do. I called my mom.

Mom to the rescue! She met with our first choice reception venue this morning and sealed the deal! One major detail is off my plate and out of my brain.

October 21, 2011 is going to be a great day.

February 11, 2011

Here's the Story

Winter has been long and cold and snowy. Last week was no exception. Justin and I spent a good chunk of the week trapped in our respective homes. By Wednesday cabin fever had officially set in. Justin mentioned that maybe we should go out on Friday night on a regular old-fashioned date night. A great idea. He suggested the St. Louis Art Museum, a favorite spot for us on Friday evenings because all of the exhibits have free admission. Also, I had a coupon for a local restaurant that we've been trying to use for quite some time, but haven't been able to get in (there's always too long of a wait). So, we settled on the Art Museum and a late dinner.

All day on Friday I was looking forward to the evening. That afternoon I talked to him, as usual, and he mentioned that he was going to go home and change before he came to pick me up. I was a little confused because I thought our evening would be very casual, but he somehow convinced me that the restaurant we were going to was a little dressier (it isn't really). But, without creating suspicion, he got me to get classed up for our night on the town.

When he picked me up, he told me he had picked up a little present for me that afternoon. Now, this isn't uncommon. Justin is a gift-giver. I was pleasantly surprised when I found a super cool porcelain travel coffee mug from Kaldi's on my car seat. Even though I'm a huge coffee fan I've never had a travel mug of my own (just one that I nicked from the Lost & Found at church...). It was a great gift and I loved it. And, immediately, I thought "It's not engagement night. No one gets a travel mug on engagement night." Score one for decoy gifts.

I settled in for a lovely old-fashioned date night with my man.

We arrived at the Art Museum and it was a beautiful night. Freezing, yes, but still beautiful.  It happened to be a week in between special exhibits so the museum was pretty empty and we had many of the rooms to ourselves. We spent a little while wondering around and eventually ended up back in the Portrait Gallery on the first floor. It's probably my favorite room in the museum. It's painted a gorgeous blue color and makes me feel like I'm in a gallery in Paris. After a few minutes, though, I was ready to move on and started to walk from the room. Justin pulled me back and suggested we stay in the Portrait Gallery a little longer.

Then he started saying the most beautiful things and before I knew it he was down on one knee asking me to do him the honor of being his wife. I couldn't believe it! Of course, I said yes - even before he could get the ring box open. In the end, he had to slip the ring on my finger because I was shaking too much to do it myself. All I can say is - JOY! I cannot wait to marry him and spend my life with him. Just after he proposed two girls walked into the room and I got them to snap this picture of us. A wonderful moment captured forever.

Old-fashioned date night turned into a perfect evening! Next, he took me to my favorite French restaurant, Chez Leon, for an incredibly tasty and romantic meal - complete with red roses and champagne with dessert. Then it was off to Taste for after dinner drinks. I couldn't have dreamed of a better evening spent with my future husband.

February 8, 2011

Carried Along

Upon our engagement, a lovely friend sent us this beautiful passage from Jayber Crow by Wendell Berry along with her congratulations. I'm so glad that she shared it with us, this description of the beauty of this moment and all those that led us here. I am reminded of the overwhelming truth that we are caught up in God's story and not our own. It is by His faithfulness alone that we find ourselves in the middle of such joy and on the road to a new chapter in our lives.
I have made plans enough, but I see now that I have never lived by a plan. Any more than if I had been a bystander watching me live my life, I don't feel that I ever have been quite sure what was going on. Nearly everything that has happened to me has happened by surprise. All the important things have happened by surprise. And whatever has been happening usually has already happened before I have had time to expect it. The world doesn't stop because you are in love or in mourning or in the need of time to think. And so when I have though I was in my story or in charge of it, I really have been only on the edge of it, carried along. Is this because we are in an eternal story that is happening partly in time?

February 7, 2011

Yes, it will be nice!

We're getting married! It's basically the very best news, EVER.

I could not be more thrilled to be Justin's wife, to share our life together, to worship God together, to have a family and cultivate a home.

February 2, 2011

Wouldn't it be nice.

I've had this song stuck in my head for days. I like it.

Thank you Beach Boys...and boyfriend. Wouldn't it be nice?

Wouldn't it be nice if we were older
Then we wouldn't have to wait so long
And wouldn't it be nice to live together
In the kind of world where we belong

You know its gonna make it that much better
When we can say goodnight and stay together

Wouldn't it be nice if we could wake up
In the morning when the day is new
And after having spent the day together
Hold each other close the whole night through

Happy time together we been spending
I wish that ever kiss was never ending
Wouldn't it be nice

Maybe if we think and wish and hope and pray it might come true
Baby then there wouldn't be a single thing we couldn't do
We could be married
And then we'd be happy

Wouldn't it be nice

You know it seems the more we talk about it
It only makes it worse to live without it
But lets talk about it
Wouldn't it be nice

February 1, 2011


Dear Winter,

We've had a nice run, don't you think? The hot chocolate was so wonderful. You'll always be the one who was here when Ike came home. The snow was very pretty (the first time). But, ice? Are you kidding me? I love a snow day as much as the next girl, but it's time for you to hit the road. You can't stay on my couch anymore. I'm kicking you out so that I can get ready for my friend Spring to come and stay for a while.


Marshmallows from the Expert

Remember that I time I told you about making marshmallows with my boyfriends sister-in-law? Well, she's a food blogger extraordinaire and she just posted about our afternoon on her blog.

Check it out: Making Marshmallows in The Sweets Life kitchen.

Stay tuned for an adventure in making your own peeps this Easter.

We also made a very yummy galette that I hope I get to make again sometime. I don't even like onions and I could not get enough of this Butternut Squash and Caramelized Onion Galette.