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Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Wednesday Words

"There is no psychiatrist in the world like a puppy licking your face."
- Ben Williams

A couple of days ago, Mr. L and I got a very special delivery -- our puppy Liam flew across the world to join us in Hawaii!  We're so thrilled to have him back, even if he's constantly barking at the neighbor dogs =)

(The company we hired to help get him here even provided him with a real flower lei!)

Welcome home, Liam!

Friday, November 25, 2011

Five for Friday

1. I'm thankful that I met you for the first time 7 years ago yesterday!

2.  I'm thankful that I'm actually getting to spend the holidays with you.  Maybe we'll be lucky next year, too =)

3.  I'm thankful to have the opportunity to travel around the world with you.

4.  I'm thankful for all the things you do to make me happy.

5.  And I'm thankful that you're by my side through all of our adventures, big and small.

ily <3

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Wednesday Words

For each new morning with its light,
For rest and shelter of the night,
For health and food, for love and friends,
For everything Thy goodness sends.
~Ralph Waldo Emerson

As we embark on another holiday season, I hope that everyone has a safe, happy, and blessed Thanksgiving.  And if you decide to brave the crowds on Black Friday, good luck!  =)

Monday, November 21, 2011

Reflections: On Moving Away from Home

Before my husband and I moved to Hawaii, I'd never really lived away from home before.  Family has always been very important to Mr. L and me, so we're all a pretty tightly-knit bunch and keep up often with our parents, siblings, and extended family.  Since I'd lived at home for 22 years of my life before Mr. L and I tied the knot, and he'd been on his own since joining the Navy, I perhaps was more acutely dreading the path that lay before us.

Even after we got married, I was never "away" from home.  We only moved an hour away from where we both grew up.  Nearly every weekend, we'd go home and see our families, so it was like we never actually left.  We easily kept up with the goings-on in our small town and with our friends and loved ones, but at the same time we were a nice distance away too.  It was a good compromise in our opinion.

But things have changed, as inevitably they always do.  Unfortunately that chapter of our lives is over, and we have to now accept that and move on.

The night before we left, the reality of our situation hit me like a ton of bricks.  I had no idea it would happen the way that it did, and it's a little embarrassing to recall it.  I flat out had a panic attack in my old bedroom while we were rush-packing all of our stuff.

Both Mr. L and I accept the blame in this situation.  We left packing to the very last night, literally our last few hours, something we absolutely should NOT have done.  I do not advise anyone to follow our horrible method lol.  I really regret it, and I wish we would have been prepared so we could have spent our last few hours with family instead of with me freaking out.

I was incredibly overwhelmed; here I was being forced to not only deal with the fact that we were leaving, for good, at 6am the next morning, but I also had to keep a clear head and decide what needed to go with us and what didn't.  The finality of it all slapped me in the face, and I just couldn't function under those conditions.  As a result, we didn't pack as efficiently as we could or some of the things we needed, resulting in more shipping costs for the future.  It was an awful night, and I feel badly for putting Mr. L in that kind of situation.

Now it's been two weeks [at the time that I wrote this post] since we moved out here, and it's such a strange feeling.  In some ways, I'm surprised that it's only been two weeks.  So much has happened since the night of my panic attack -- we boarded four different planes and dealt with nearly 24 hours of travel; we've met some really wonderful and nice new people; we've freaked out, cried, and worried about a place to live; we've been safely installed in base housing and ready to settle in; and we've started exploring the island on which we now find ourselves living.  In other ways, though, it feels like we were just home, and if I could go just a little bit backwards in time, I could hold my puppy again, or see my parents, or sleep in my old bed one more time.  Unfortunately time doesn't move backwards, only forwards, so I've been attempting to keep myself focused only on the straight-ahead and not what is behind me.

As we unpack our last few boxes and start making this place feel like home, especially for the holidays, I hope I keep those words of wisdom in mind as we deal with the challenges ahead.  I'm worried about how I'll be when Mr. L starts deploying, but I know that with good friends and a good support system (and a good dog to snuggle up to at night!), I'll be alright, just as long as I continue looking forward.

If you've finally moved away from "home", did you handle it with as much grace as I did?  Haha =)

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Five for Friday

1. I'm sorry I've been grouchy since we've been Internet-less.

2. I'm also sorry you're still sick from the flu shot =\

3. Thank you for going driving with me again the other day! I hope you enjoyed some of the sights from the passenger's side =)

4. Skyrim and Plants vs. Zombies are our saving grace, lol.

5. Hope you've enjoyed your whole week off - I feel spoiled that I got so much time with you!

ily <3

Friday, November 18, 2011

Wednesday Words

I apologize for this post being late -- darn you Time Warner for not giving us Internet yet!

“Our battered suitcases were piled on the sidewalk again; we had longer ways to go. But no matter, the road is life.” 
- Jack Kerouac

(Picture is my own)

I feel like this quote describes military life so well since there is so much travel in such a short timespan. Here's to hoping we get done unpacking our "battered suitcases" rather quickly this go around!

Thursday, November 17, 2011

And it Comes Back to Us: May 15th Arrives

Mr. L and I are currently getting settled in Hawaii, and since we may or may not have access to internet, here are some pre-written scheduled posts to keep you guys entertained!


The night before our wedding, I thankfully had no issues with sleeping. I figured it might take me a long time to drift off, but I must have been pretty tired from the rehearsal and rehearsal dinner since I passed out around 12am.

Mr. L apparently had a good ol' time the night before. He and some of his friends left the rehearsal dinner to go watch a movie and hang out in the hotel room, laughing and enjoying his time with his buddies.  I'm so happy he got to spend more time with his friends -- being in the military means lots of long-distance friendships, so he definitely got in some good quality time with his buds!

(Just a quick reminder of how much they love each other so very inappropriately.)

I woke up in my room a little early that morning, around 8am.  Luckily our wedding wasn't scheduled until 5pm that evening, so everyone was able to get a little more shuteye than would have otherwise been possible.  I got up, took a peek out the window, saw beautiful clear, sunny skies, and said a quick thank you prayer!

I hopped in the shower, reveling in the refreshing hot water, and after getting out I took a few minutes to just relax, breathe, and oh, of course, check Facebook!

After presumably updating my status and reading some of the well-wishers' messages, I ventured out to eat a quick breakfast, dry my hair, and help load some of the tons of supplies that needed to head to the venue.

(Our venue, the Kirk House)

We arrived at the Kirk House in the late morning, decorations in hand, and proceeded to begin set up.  It definitely took a LONG time to complete everything, and some things we didn't take into consideration (like the wind blowing the programs out of the chairs), but it all eventually did come together beautifully.  My mother did an amaaaaazing job making sure everything turned out as perfectly as it could, and her "helpers" (family and friends, especially my friend Bonnie and her hubby) were pretty awesome themselves =)

Since it was relatively warm outside already, I was banned from helping with the decorations outside, so I did a few little things inside, like set up the seating chart and steam the table linens (my hairdresser arrived a little early and ended up helping out with this part as well -- thank you so much, Mrs. Darlene!).  I really felt like I should be outside at least helping set up tables or something, but by the time I was done with my tasks inside, it was time for me to start getting ready!


Missed something?  Catch up here!

Before the Big Day
And it Comes Back to Us

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Celebrating Baby Grace!

Back at the beginning of October, on the day after Mr. L and I returned to Alabama from Maryland, our family and friends got together to celebrate the future arrival of a sweet, precious, baby girl named Grace!

It was a lovely shower, with beautiful decorations that had a fun and cute animal print theme.

The future older brother was around, of course, and looking just as handsome as ever!

The games were pretty fun -- for one, we had to answer a few questions about my brother and SIL to see who knew them best, and for another, the almost-parents-again competed to see who could diaper a baby the fastest!

I had my money on SIL, but wouldn't you know it, my brother pretty much owned at that game =)

After the games, it was time to open presents!  Bryant got to open his "I'm going to be a big brother!" present first =)

(You can tell he loved it -- he's enthralled!)

Then his mommy and daddy went to town on the pile of presents as we all looked on.

(Pap attempting to keep Bryant entertained during the rest of the present-opening!)

When present time was over, we spent the rest of the afternoon eating and mingling with the rest of the guests, a combination of dear friends and family.

 (I love my Grandma!)

 Speaking of my Grandma, the day before the shower, she had her "29th" birthday, so in order to celebrate, my brother and SIL surprised her with a cake!

She didn't believe them at first when they told her it was for her birthday, but she finally sat down so we could sing Happy Birthday to her.

(I love the looks she gives...this one clearly says, "Oh no you didn't...") 

But of course, there was a catch, as is usually the case with my brother.  The candles on the cake were trick candles, you know, the kind you can't blow out!

(G-Maw was not amused...okay she kind of was =) ) 

I totally caught it on video, and I had no clue they were trick candles.  I'll treasure that forever, haha.

All in all, it was a wonderful way to celebrate some special ladies in our lives -- my grandma, my SIL, and my soon-to-be niece.  We love you all, and we can't wait until you arrive, sweet Grace!  =)

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Before the Big Day: We Rehearse and Then Eat

Mr. L and I are currently getting settled in Hawaii, and since we may or may not have access to internet, here are some pre-written scheduled posts to keep you guys entertained!

And we're back in chronological order by the way =)


I remember being relatively calm on Friday the 14th of May -- the day before our wedding. It was a beautiful, warm spring day, and I distinctly recall my mother and I fervently praying the weather the next day would be the same. We did have a backup plan for our outdoor wedding just in case of rain, but we certainly didn't intend on using it if we didn't have to!

We set our rehearsal time for that afternoon, around 4pm.  Surprisingly, everyone made it on time, and things went rather smoothly.  I remember more being lost in the moment than any directions I was supposed to follow, but I had one of those feelings that everything would be just fine.

We spent probably close to an hour at our venue, just figuring out all of the little details while we had the opportunity.  Then we finished up figuring out who needed to be where and when and headed to a local seafood restaurant to enjoy our rehearsal dinner.

We had a great evening just letting loose with our family and friends.  It was so nice just being able to sit and talk with everyone, especially those folks we don't get to see a lot, like Mr. L's best friend since kindergarten and some of his old Navy buddies.

(Mr. L's aforementioned best friend, along with his then-fiancee, now-wife!) 


(Apparently I like bows on my head!) 

I don't think we'd laughed as much as we did that night in a long time.  It was such a great night, and a wonderful way to spend our last evening before we'd call ourselves husband and wife.


Missed something?  Catch up here!

Before the Big Day
And it Comes Back to Us