Tag Archives: wedding

One Decade Down

2 Sep

When we told Nia we’d be celebrating our 10th wedding anniversary today, she accurately and adorably pointed out, “Your marriage is older than me!” Sure, it’s not as old as others but I still think our years have a lot of stories to tell.

  • We were separated more than we were together during the first three years of our marriage but we made it work. I was a loner in Savannah while the Army had Andrew on months of training in California, an overseas mission in Kosovo and a war in Iraq. Even when we were at the same address, our job schedules kept us apart. He spoiled me by chauffeuring me 40+ miles for my weekend producing job, just so we could spend more time.
  • The time apart in the military also meant we’d be apart for Nia’s birth. It was too much for both of us and Andrew decided a civilian life was best for our family life. I know that decision was so very difficult – I’ve always felt he was born to lead and he was such an awesome soldier – I am forever grateful.
  • From Army Captain to Best Buy Sales Manager, career number two kept Andrew close to us but still wasn’t ideal for him or us. Career number three was. So much so, baby number two came into our lives.
  • Nate’s birth was so special for both of us because we got to experience it together. We didn’t find out what we were having. We both wanted it that way. (We found out with Nia because we wanted to make sure he knew while at war – just in case.) Nate’s birth had complications and an emergency c-section was necessary. Andrew didn’t waver and I will never forget the moment we shared when the doctor told us everything was ok and that we were having a boy.
  • Soon after we became a family of four, the third career offered Andrew a promotion and a relocation. This change meant I could be a stay-at-home mom while he brought home the bacon. It was wonderful until it came to an end with a layoff. It may sound odd but this is probably one of my most cherished times together. Who would think a layoff would bring such happiness? Sure, we were concerned but we both looked at it as an opportunity and a chance to spend some quality family time together. We encouraged each other as we both looked for jobs and never took ourselves too seriously. We loved to watch the movie “Fun with Dick and Jane” – quoting it and seeing the hilariously sad reality in it. (Never getting any ideas, of course.)
  • After only a few weeks of unemployment, we both found great jobs (career four for Andrew, two for me) but it meant a big adjustment to our family. Nate would now need to go to daycare again. Nia would need to go to after school. We conquered this together and continue to work hard at it.

There are so many other challenges and adventures we’ve experienced together but through it all we’ve taught each other so much. How to take better care of one another. How to be a team. How to best deal with my paranoia and worrying issues. How to not fight because there are crumbs on the counter, empty cups around the house or other quirks. How to try to be a parent.

I know the coming years are going to continue to try us and to teach us. With Andrew as my partner, best friend, favorite and love, I can’t wait. Besides, I figure he’s stuck with me for another five or six decades. Then, we’ll really be older than Nia.

Threw Away the Receipt

8 Aug

In a little less than a month, Andrew and I will celebrate our 10th wedding anniversary. I couldn’t ask for a better partner/roomie to grow old and put up with. When things get challenging, nerves are tried and the quirks add up, I will remind him that the receipt is thrown away and he can’t return/exchange me.

Here are just a few of my favorite “you married me” moments:

  • You pile your dirty socks near the side of the bed. I never put clean clothes away.
  • I am a moody girl. You check my birth control pills to see if there’s a valid reason for it.
  • You snore. I don’t hear it when I’m sleeping. When I’m watching tv though, watch for a pillow to be thrown.
  • I worry about everything like soap getting in Nate’s eyes. You rarely worry and respond to me with statements like, “The ceiling could also fall down on his head.”
  • You leave crumbs on the counter. I park too close to your work bench.
  • I ask flighty questions and have many brain fart moments. (For example, not getting simple jokes or taking a few seconds longer than I should to figure out what word was just spelled to me.) After you look at me in shock for a minute, you don’t make me feel dumb, you make me feel endearing.
  • You bring me home flowers when you go to the store each week. I bring you home my car that needs filled with gas.
  • I let cups collect on my bathroom sink. You build cup towers with them.
  • You love me. I love you back. Swoon.

I just realized…

13 Feb

After all that fashion show blog business, I just realized I forgot to tell you all how my dress compared to other ladies at the wedding!

Let’s just say, there was a mix.  There were short dresses, long dresses, skirts with nice tops, plain dresses and super fancy dresses with fur coats – oh yeah and several ladies with poofy feathers in their hair.  I forgot to tell you all that the groom is from England right?  Like 80 people or so came from over “the pond” (as I heard a few people say) and they came complete with feathers/hats and tails on their tuxes!  Oh yeah, and the great accent!  It was just lovely talking with them!

So, all in all, I was appropriately dressed!  Mine blended in quite well and showed no more skin than the bridesmaids (who got to pick out their own style of dress – they all had the same fabric and color but each wore a different style – it was really cool).

Just thought I’d give you that tidbit!

Whirlwind Wedding Weekend

12 Feb

Beautiful Princesses

Wow.  What a weekend!  It really featured a little bit of everything – some of the usuals (being stuck in the car for hours, angry little man fits, arguments over nothing and plenty of fast food) but there were also lots of firsts (taking in the Philly sights, a beautiful little flower girl, dancing with my sexy husband on a “Grand Ballroom” floor and enjoying fancy food that you certainly can’t get at the Applebee’s).  Looking back on it all, I realize that I witnessed some wonderful things about my family.

1. Andrew is a saint and an incredible “baby-daddy”

I would have to say that poor Andrew had to suffer through the worst time of the whole weekend.  He had to struggle with Nate during the entire wedding ceremony.  (It was a Catholic mass so that meant he battled it out for a little more than an hour.)  By the end of the ceremony, Nate’s bow tie was off and Andrew had drool/tear marks all down his tux jacket.  As soon as we realized Nate was not going to be quiet through the ceremony (about 5 minutes into it), Andrew took him outside and stuck it out – only occasionally getting a glimpse of the wedding through the back doors of the church.

I know he was really bummed because he would have liked to see his cousin get married and I would have loved for him (and Nate) to share in the beauty of it all with me – but what can we do you know?  I think what really made it all ok in the end was that an older couple came up to Andrew at the reception and told him he was a saint after what they watched him go through at the wedding.  They told him they couldn’t believe how calm he remained and that they wanted him to know he did a great job.  It brought tears to my eyes because it’s one of those things where you think everyone must think we are such horrible parents – I mean, why can’t we get control of our kids, right? Those few words of praise will go along way and I will always remember how great it made both of us feel.

2. Nia may be tiny but her heart is HUGE

"City of Brotherly Love" for sure

Nia did such a perfect job as flower girl princess. Her Lola fixed her hair in a beautiful French braid that circled the back of her head and she told me that she felt like Cinderella. She even said she would put her hand on her heart when she bent over (bowed) just like Cinderella does.  I’m so proud of her – her personality and her ability to spread happiness amazes me every day. I couldn’t believe how many people kept asking her to do her “dance” and she would do it because it made her happy to make them smile.

Most Requested Dance

3.  Nate – is actually a happy little man

I know, it’s so crazy to write that after reading what I wrote earlier but he really is happy.  His smile is contagious and he always has one to flash at people.  Even if he is in the middle of a fit, if someone walks up to him and talks to him or smiles at him, he smiles back and he still manages to say “please” and “thank you” – even if he’s crying!  He loves to dance and laugh at silly things (like people at our table making faces at him).  He loves to play Hide and Seek and Duck, Duck, Goose (which he tried to do a few times in our hotel room).  He puts his head on my shoulder and says, “Hi Mommy” when he wakes up in the morning.  He says the lines of movies while he’s watching them.  He flirts with the ladies with just his eyes!  He happily yells “PAPA!” during a rehearsal dinner toast and makes everyone laugh.  He finds joy in simple things – Andrew put a quarter, two dimes, a nickel and four pennies in a small box and he didn’t want to let it out of his grip.  He kept saying, “My money.  My money.” That little boy.

Chick Magnet


I’m just glad that we got to be a part of such a fairy tale wedding.  Erin (the bride) looked straight out of a bridal magazine and even changed into the prettiest pair of hot pink high heels for her reception which I thought was the cutest thing.  Our extended family is such a caring, fun group of people and it was so nice getting to spend time with all of them. And speaking of family, we would be lost without Lola and Papa.  Not only did they come to our rescue and help take care of the kids (letting mommy and daddy have a few hours of couple time) but they also covered all of our hotel costs!

Valles Moms

This trip also gave us another first.  Our first “official” Philly Cheese Steak.  We had no idea where to get one so we, of course, turned to the internet and discovered “Pat’s King of Steaks.”  Andrew punched in the address in the GPS and it led us to a busy neighborhood complete with kids playing basketball and soccer in the cold and crowds of people surrounding two cheese steak shops – both claiming to be the best.  We ordered ours “one wit whiz” and “one mushroom wit wiz” – one with onions and cheese whiz, one with mushrooms, onions and cheese whiz.  I’m happy to say that the sandwich held its own in comparison to the sea bass, red snapper, beef tenderloin and amazing deserts we were treated to at the wedding events.  Even the kids’ chicken fingers were fancier!

What a weekend!



Hotel Bathroom Blog

8 Feb

So here I am – in a fancy Philly hotel with a beautiful view of downtown – trapped in the bathroom as I agonizingly wait for Nate to stop fake crying and fall asleep.  Don’t worry, I’m not dropping the kids off at the pool or anything like that –  I’m just sitting on the beautifully tiled floor hoping that they clean it really well.

Nate and I should be at a wedding rehearsal with Andrew and Nia right now but the little angry man decided he was going to have a terrible-two fit and not eat and not take his nap.  (I mean, what did we think?  We did just have him strapped in his car seat for the most part of the last 24 hours!)  Nevertheless, a No-Nap-Nate wasn’t going to work for us because there was no way we would have been able to make it through a church rehearsal without causing a major scene.  Nope.  We – number 1 – aren’t that brave to test it out and – number 2 – aren’t that stupid to test it out.

Wow.  I wrote that whole last paragraph in peace.  I don’t hear Nate anymore.  That, of course, doesn’t mean he’s sleeping but still, at least I don’t have to be tortured with the whines anymore.  Nope, instead I’ll just be stuck in here – me, some toiletries and this computer until the battery dies because I left the adapter out in the room.

At least I have a yummy (free) dinner to look forward to tonight!  I’ve already got my fancy jewelry on that I got for Christmas!  I just hope I don’t smell like Eau-De-la-Toilet!

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