Concerts, Fairs, Sports and Family Time #SimpleLittleSunday

Photo on 9-27-15 at 12.33 PM

  • Julia’s math teacher is confusing but she is learning and did better on this test. She also is pumped for fall and decorated her room. 
  • Chloe’s friends from Cyprus are visiting and she’s very excited about it.
  • Caleb got to go to the Global Citizen Festival and see a ton of famous people in Central Park.
  • Ben went to the Durham Fair with Brittany. And Jesse Mac is helping him get a job at a solar company.
  • Wendy also went to the Durham Fair with her friend and nephew. She played a basketball and on the first try got a big bear.
  • Alyssa went to the GUILFORD fair and it was kind of boring BUT she was adventurous and went on a really fast ride. She almost fell out but she didn’t.
  • Aaron went on a picnic with his grandparents.
  • Luke went hiking.
  • Scott started basketball season.
  • Christos got promoted from dish washer to bus boy!
  • Reed’s dad got married.
  • Michael bought a 4-wheeler for $200 and sold it for $400.
  • Grace didn’t go to Breanne’s BUT she went up front to worship.
  • Gabriel’s friend came from England and stayed with him for 2 weeks.
  • Remi went to the Big E (he’s visiting us from France).
  • I got to take a selfie with a duck!

Perfect in the Imperfections #dnjdovows

September 11th is a day that will live in infamy. Everyone who’s anyone knows what happened on that day back in 2001. But 14 years later, Dave and I decided to put a new spin on it, a happy spin. We decided to get married!

Now, before you go and get all offended, we didn’t pretend like it was any other day. We made sure we honored the day and all the people who gave their lives and selflessly serve(d) our country, with a moment of silence at the beginning of the ceremony. Because without those people, there’s a good chance our wedding would not have been as perfect as it was.

We are 5 days into our new chapter and it’s still not completely real to us. We lay in bed at night and have to remind ourselves that we’re good. We’re not doing anything wrong. We don’t have to hide anything. And Jesus actually LIKES this! It’s just crazy.

But before we leave for our honeymoon and get too far into this new chapter, we wanted to write about the spectacular day that we made from 9/11/15.

To begin, we need to back it up to the 10th. The rainy, gross, thunder-stormy 10th. All day was absolutely disgusting with on and off (mostly on) downpours. We couldn’t have our rehearsal at the beach where the actual ceremony would be, so we walked through it at our church. The tent was set up the day before because of impending bad weather, and when we looked, our reception area was basically a lake. Easily a foot or two deep in some areas.

My mom looked and was concerned, but my response was “not my problem. I’m deciding right now that the lake is not my problem. Someone else can worry about it.”

Seriously guys, look at this:

Dave made it his problem.

He actually left the dinner early with a sump pump to try and get as much water out of there as possible. Thankfully, we’ve been so dry lately that the ground soaked it right up and he didn’t need to use it.

The 11th was a little rainy in the morning but by the time we needed to be outside for pictures and whatnot, it was absolutely perfect. So without further ado, in no particular order, here are our top 11 moments from our wedding day (because 10 just isn’t enough):

1. The First Look

If you’re planning on getting married, we highly recommend doing a first look. I’ve been to weddings where they do them, but Erin and Peter of Daphne & Dean took it to a whole other level. There was so much anticipation building up to that moment – all we wanted to do was see each other, talk and enjoy OUR day TOGETHER. Having to wait until 2pm to see each other was a bit of a stretch, espeically for Dave who didn’t have too much to occupy himself. But the BEST part of that moment was when Erin and Peter, after taking our pictures, left us alone for about 15 minutes and let us just be. That made all the difference in the world!

2. The Garter Surprise

We never planned on doing the whole garter/bouquet toss, so I never planned on getting a garter. But when I found one with a flask in it, I HAD to. I didn’t tell Dave and made sure to surprise him, before the wedding, with our photographers. I can’t wait to see those pictures! His face was priceless.

3. The Tequila

Before the ceremony, Dave was dying for a cup of coffee or some water. So while the guys were waiting for us girls to get there, two of them left to get something to drink – they came back with tequila. Not EXACTLY what Dave was looking for, but it worked. I even got to fill up my flask!

4. The Hill

Specifically, me walking down it.

j hill

Photo Credit: Tim Bolton

A girl’s gotta make an entrance! For me, this was stunning. I was looking over our friends and family along the water and made sure I took a moment to really see everything. And once I did, the only thing I could whisper as I was walking down the hill was “holy shit” haha

For Dave, it brought everything that we had been planning to a reality. And made him cry super hard – he was sobbing (SCORE! haha). He says it was overwhelming to see me in that moment. It was more than the first look. The reality of our vows and the ceremony, he really absorbed 100% of that, and seeing me walk down the hill was the beginning of all of that. With me walking down the hill, he was brought into the moment.

Ladies, this is proof that you can do the first look and still have a sweet moment at the ceremony!

5. The Sneaky Peter

Photographers are amazing and will do anything to get the shot they want. Ours were no different. I was trying to make sure I saw everything to take it all in and out of the corner of my eye I see Peter, behind us, popping up from the rocks along the water. From that moment on I looked only at Dave for fear of giggling at the wrong time.

6. The First Dance

Photo Credit: Peter Weber

Photo Credit: Peter Weber

In case you’re unaware, I’m a little obsessed with Sara Bareilles. So it should come as no surprise that we danced to one of her songs (specifically, I Choose You) for our first dance. The lyrics are spot-on for us, which was huge for me. The second verse says “There was a time when I would have believed them if they told me you could not come true, just love’s illusion. But then you found me and everything changed, and I believe in something again.”


We didn’t mess up the dancing at all and Dave even let me spin him! He’s such a good sport. But most importantly, it was like no one else was there. It was just us, just like all the times we danced (and probably will dance) in the kitchen.

7 & 8 & 9. The Cake

When it was time to cut the cake, I made sure the DJ knew to announce it. We walked over to the table and realized something; WE HAD NOTHING TO CUT IT WITH! Who gets married and doesn’t have a fancy cake cutter? Us. But the best man came to the rescue, ran into the church, and came out with a knife for us.

We did the whole “the groom feeds the bride” and “the bride feeds the groom” but then there was another special moment that I really hope someone got a picture of. We’ll call it “the groom finishes the piece by himself without even thinking about it” ha! Whatta goob! I don’t think we’ll ever stop laughing about that one.

And not only did our DJ play L-O-V-E by Nat King Cole, BUT HE SANG IT! I looked over while Dave was finishing his first piece wondering when the music would stop and realized he was belting it out. It was so great!

10. The Vows

We did the typical vows but then added a few lines to personalize it. I was so proud of Dave getting through his without crying! And I was proud of me too! I had two things to read – vows to Dave and vows to the boys. I couldn’t let the day go by without honoring them and loving on them. They’re a part of this union too and it was important for me to recognize that. I got choked up for a second, but made sure I didn’t look at the boys. I would’ve lost it if I did because apparently Scott had tears streaming down his face and was making everyone else cry!

11. The Exit

Most couples plan a big exit. There can be fireworks and sparklers. A limo or a decked out car.

We didn’t have any of that.

What did we do? We just left. Seriously. We decided we had had enough and were tired and wanted to get cleaned up and relax so we said good bye to the few people who were around us, turned around, and didn’t look back! The party was still going and apparently continued for another 30 minutes before they shut it down and packed it up, but we didn’t care. We were actually happy that everyone kept it going!


All in all, it was the PERFECT day. We honestly couldn’t have asked for more. So please join me, as I raise a water bottle, and toast this new chapter. May all our lives be filled with joy and happiness…and just a little bit of crazy.

Photo Credit: Daphne & Dean

Photo Credit: Daphne & Dean

Family, Dancing, Singing and #dnjdovows #SimpleLittleSunday

Photo on 9-13-15 at 12.11 PM

  • Ben is excited that we have leftover wedding cake for snack. He loves cake.
  • Julia danced in public at the wedding and had so much fun. And she saw her grandparents.
  • Caleb had fried mac and cheese for the first time and it was amazing.
  • Livia’s grandmother’s cat was nice..for once!
  • Max auditioned for and got into the best choir in his school. and his choir director recommended him to another group
  • Leila hung out with her Uncle Fred yesterday
  • Michael got paid $20 to dance with his grandmother.
  • Scott’s family is visiting from California. He doesn’t get to see them often so it’s cool.
  • Reed got a job at Dough on Main.
  • Christos saw Straight Outta Compton and it was great.
  • Nico’s last day of work is Wednesday so he has more free time.
  • Josh was captian on his soccer team.
  • Gracie washed her phone so she gets to get a new one. but she has to pay for it so she has to save up and God is teaching her how to value her things.
  • Grace slept over Breanne’s house.
  • Aaron got into Norwich Tech.
  • Luke got to drive a go-cart that his mom’s friend built.
  • It was supposed to rain on Friday – our wedding day – but it POURED on Thursday instead and Friday was PERFECT!

Real or Not Real

I’m getting married in 3 days.



In 3 days.

This is crazy, and in almost no way is it real.

I’m assuming all brides go through this stage, but this is weird. Partially because I didn’t think this would ever happen, as previously stated, but also because part of my job includes event planning.

I’ve been ridiculously organized through this whole process. You should see the spreadsheets and lists diagrams and vendor contact sheets (yes, I said vendor contact sheets) and folders. I’m like a mini version of Leslie Knope with her binders

And what’s more amazing, is that Dave actually LOVES this about me! Glory in the highest, I found a good one!

But because it’s part of my job, I think there’s part of my brain that hasn’t fully connected the fact that yes, this is an “event”, but it’s also OUR event…OUR WEDDING!

I still need to get cups and earrings. And it might rain, so we have to figure that whole mess out (yay for planning an outdoor wedding!) But then there’s nothing left to do but enjoy. If I can figure that out. Oh, and move the rest of my stuff. When we’re supposed to get thunderstorms on Thursday. *cue the eye-roll*


Anyway, I think it will start to get more real tomorrow, when I don’t have to go to work and I can start celebrating. Tomorrow I’ll have a date with Elizabeth and Zelda since she can’t come to the bachelorette, and then in the evening I’ll have my bachelorette with some fantastic ladies. Then Thursday, my mom and I go for mani/pedis and Alex (the hugging cousister) arrives, then there’s the rehearsal.

…and then there’s Friday – THE WEDDING!

If that doesn’t help make things real, I’m not sure what will. So until then, I’ll just continue living here:


School, School, School and Family #SimpleLittleSunday

Photo on 9-6-15 at 12.27 PM

  • Leila’s cousins were supposed to move far away but they didn’t and she got to see them yesterday at Walmart
  • Julia started school and she has drama class. She gets nervous performing in front of people so she wasn’t sure about the class, but she loves it!
  • Caleb started school and already had a freshman retreat to Camp Hazen.
  • Ben had a picnic at his aunt’s house and saw his cousins that he hasn’t seen in a long time.
  • Max can finally do a thirds scale. He sang it for us and it’s great.
  • Christos had a solid week and a great day with Adam yesterday. They fed 15 people with 2 boxes of mac and cheese! Loaves and fishes, people – loaves and fishes.
  • Nico also had a great first week of school.
  • Alyssa actually likes her teachers this year.
  • Livia was helping her mom feed the cat outside. The sprinkler was on and should have hit her, but it didn’t.
  • Adam ALSO likes all his teachers AND he has two classes with Christos.
  • Josh’s dad bought the family tickets to the International LAX Championship Game in NYC.
  • Dave and I have been getting blessed right and left for our wedding. People we barely know or don’t talk to often or don’t walk closely with have been coming out of the woodwork and knocking our socks off. It’s been amazing.