Friday, December 28, 2012

2012 in review

Well, its that time again, time to recap the year that was 2012 and look forward to 2013.

The biggest events of 2012:

January: I became obsessed with Pinterest and used it to plan my entire wedding.

February: We bought a truck and sold our scary van.  We celebrated our four year anniversary.  Our downstairs office was finally renovated and I learned how to crochet.  My second niece was born.

March: I left my hospital job and started a new one at a non-profit where I could actually begin to use my degree.  I was away from Andrew for a whole week for the first time since we moved in together while he went to Texas for work.  My grandpa had been in cancer treatment for a year and things weren't looking good.

April: My dad lost his job for the second time in five years.  We attended our pre-cana classes for the wedding.  Our spare bedroom got a makeover with an antique bed and some redecorating.  I left my volunteer work position after two years and although it was hard, it was the right thing to do.

May: I turned 27 and we had our annual Memorial Day party, which was a blast.  I got really hardcore into wedding planning and my maid of honor and I picked dates for the shower and bachelorette party.  Andrews mom and I selected all of the flowers we would be growing for the wedding.

June: We planted the flowers for the wedding and despite the drought we were determined that they would grow.  I got my wedding dress out of layaway.  

July: We made it to the halfway point with our marital counseling at church and the wedding plans were really starting to come along.  I had the most wonderful bridal shower imaginable and felt so blessed to have so many amazing people in my life. I mailed out all of our wedding invitations late in the month and anxiously awaited the return of the RSVP's.

August: Andrew bought me my 2005 Honda Accord and we sold our 1992 Volvo 240.  I had my hair trial, figured out my wedding accessories and booked half of our honeymoon.  My grandma's sister came from Florida to help take care of my Grandpa as his health started to fail even more.

September: This was the best and worst month of the entire year.  My grandpa was put into hospice at the beginning of the month.  I went to Washington DC for work, the trip was stressful, emotional and awful and I could not wait to get home. I had my bachelorette party when I got back which was a really nice distraction and a great time with my friends. By the time I got back my grandpa was in end stage hospice and my wedding was two weeks away.  On the 22nd we got married at noon, on the 27th around 2pm, my grandpa died.  We cut our honeymoon in Kentucky short to come home.

October: I started off the month with my grandpa's funeral and that same week Andrew turned 30.  I wanted to do a lot for his birthday but I was an emotional wreck and we were broke as a joke.  At the end of the month we go our first cat Bradley from Cat Welfare and my dad turned 56.

November:  Andrew got a tooth infection and had to get a root canal.  I finally cut my hair after spending 18 months growing it out for the wedding.  We celebrated Thanksgiving with my family and my brother went in contract on a house.

December: We prepared for our first Christmas together as a married couple and it was a good one, filled with laughter and lots of wonderful memories.  We also completed another room in our house (the downstairs mud room) and in the spring we will be putting in a second bathroom.

Looking back through all my pictures on Facebook I realized that we didn't do much this year, I blame the wedding, starting a new job and my grandpa being sick but in 2013.....

We're going to Hocking Hills for an extended weekend, I'm going to see Bon Jovi with my mom for the sixth time, we might be going to the beach and plan to get out on the boat a lot more, I'm hoping we get a lot more accomplished with the house and start planning to expand our family :)

Thursday, December 27, 2012

A long Christmas weekend wrap-up

I hope that everyone had a wonderful Christmas and those in the Midwest are doing well after that crazy snow storm we had!  I'll try to recap the holiday weekend as best as possible and I've got some pictures too!

Friday: I took the day off work, it was my mom's birthday and she wanted to go shopping, at 7am, at Macy's.  I put a smile on my face and told her okay and she picked me up at 6:45am to head to the mall.  We were there till 2pm, and about 3 hours were spent at Macy's, she's just a little obsessed.  Friday night Andrew took me to get my Christmas gift, the iPhone 5 :) which I LOVE and I don't know how I put up with my crummy HTC Evo for so long with its poor battery life and constant dropped calls.

Saturday: We still had more shopping to do and headed out to a different mall, where we were successful in finding the rest of our gifts.  Then I had to go to the grocery store, which was a hot mess and caused me to have a total meltdown.  Immature, yes, and I was pretty embarrassed afterwards.

Sunday: I cleaned most of the day in preparation for our party, baked two pies and made two batches of cookies.  I ran over to my parents house to drop off the pies and our card table and watched the Steelers loose horribly and blow their season.  Oh well, there's always next year!

Monday: Christmas Eve, we hung out all morning watching movies and lounging around.  I cleaned a little more and prepped some of our food for the party.  We went to mass at 4 at my church, picked up my grandma afterwards and headed to my parents house for dinner and our gift exchange.  I love the traditions that my parents have kept over all these years.  We have a traditional Polish dinner of fish, perogies, rolls, green beans and beans with sauerkraut.  Before the meal, we passed around a wafer that resembles the host at church and everyone took a piece to eat to remind us of the true meaning of the season and that we are all part of the body of Christ.  I may have cried a little bit.  We drank and laughed, had our gift exchange and stayed till midnight.

Tuesday: Christmas Day, Andrew and I had already exchanged gifts but did little stocking stuffers and opened those in the morning.  We finished getting ready for his family party which started around 3 and had a great time visiting with everyone, exchanging gifts and playing cards.  I think I ate my weight in cheese and bean dip.  Good thing we are starting a weight loss challenge at work next week.  

Wednesday: I was supposed to go back to work, but the winter storm we got had other plans and our office stayed closed for an extra day.  I was thankful to not have to go out in the snow and risk wrecking my new-to-me car.  Andrew had the day off so we stayed home and watched the snow fly.  I felt bad being lazy all day, but man was it nice!!!

Our tree this year.
When the storm started around 8am on 12/26, this is all freezing rain.

And about an hour later it started to snow.
She will sniff anything!

Our poorly plowed street, so glad I wasn't out driving!

From the side garage door to the deck.

My view from the living room window for most of the day.

Monday, December 17, 2012

over the weekend

First off, I cannot believe that Christmas Eve is one week from today, ONE WEEK!  EEEEK!  And guess what, I didn't really hardcore start my shopping till this weekend.

I sort of started my weekend on Thursday with our work open house, which was a lot of fun and I'm glad that Andrew and my parents were finally able to see where I work!

Friday night I met an old co-worker from my hospital job for dinner.  It was so great to catch up and talk about the insanity around that place that I do not miss.  We didn't leave the restaurant till 9pm and I promptly went home to watch Gold Rush and fall asleep.  Yes, I am so addicted to that show!
I mean, who doesn't want to make fun of talking about the Glory Hole?!?
Saturday I was off to get a good chunk of my Christmas shopping done, I started off with Joann ETC, Bath and Body Works and Marshalls.  I didn't find everything I wanted but managed to score some good deals.  I got home and waited for Andrew to return from his errands so we could do more shopping.  Big mistake, malls near Columbus are a LIVING HELL on a Saturday at 2pm and I sort of forgot.  One panic attack later, we headed out for an early dinner.  Later that night, we met my brother and his fiance for some bowling.  I neglected to take any pictures, maybe it was because I was too focused on throwing my ball behind me instead of down the lane or running to the bar for another 7&7 :)

Sunday it was shopping, visiting my parents and grandma for a while, cleaning and gift wrapping.  I did manage to make one batch of cookies and found these bad boys at the grocery store.

Who didn't love warheads?!  These are so good I doubt they last long!   

 The weekend ended with a horrible Steelers loss and making an amazing dinner of beer bread, corn, chicken fried steak and mashed potatoes!  And its a short week :)

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

two weeks of no sleep and root canals

For the last two weeks, my darling, adorable husband has not been sleeping.  He's had a tooth infection and has been a hot mess.  It all started when our now former dentist went to fill a cavity and went too far into the tooth, causing damage to the root and an infection.

He finally had a root canal yesterday and is pretty much back to normal today but let me tell you these last two weeks have not been much fun.  We missed out on a party this weekend because neither of us had been sleeping, I've been sleeping in bed alone (which was nice at first then a little strange) while he's been downstairs in his recliner.  But I've learned a lot of interesting things about the nocturnal activities that go on around our house in the process. 

You remember this guy?!  Our sweet new kitty Bradley, well apparently at night he turns into a crazed maniac.  From the time we normally go to bed at 10pm until about 2am he runs up and down the stairs, carries around my hair ties, swats his toys up and down the basement stairs and then passes out.  I imagine something like this must go on when Brad and Andrew are alone.

I already knew about the strange things the dog does in her sleep, dreaming, howling, rustling around but apparently the cat is far more entertaining.

I would also like to take this time to tell everyone that Andrew and I are sort of the unofficial neighborhood watch dogs.  Living out in the country and being the second youngest people on our little court means that we try to look out for others around us.  Andrew saw some suspicious activity going on around our neighborhood and kept an eye on things while he wasn't sleeping.  Thankfully we didn't witness any actual crimes but there has been some vandalism in our area recently.

Other things that came from two weeks of restless nights:

~ All the clocks in the house are synched up for once
~ The DVR is far less full that normal, which is a win since all my fave addicting reality TV shows are back on
~ Pain is often worse at night because you have nothing else to think about
~ Vicodin makes Andrew really hungry thus night time eating and a pile of dirty dishes in the morning

It was really strange to sleep in a bed with someone other than the cat last night, but I am so glad that he is feeling better.  I also never again want to hear in complete detail what came out of his tooth and how the doctor talked about the infection....sick, sick, sick!!!!

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Five years and the next seven

One of our first photos together at his brothers wedding
On February 5, 2013 Andrew and I will have been in our relationship for five years.  This is now my longest relationship.  We'll be married for close to five months by then as well.  My mother-in-law once told me that the first seven years you're married are the hardest.  She said things will happen in those seven years that will make you both question your relationship, struggle, fall more in love and then eventually realize that you were always meant to be together.
Our first Christmas Card photo 2011
In our first five years as a couple we have been through so much that I often wonder if the first seven years will be similar.  When we first met, my dad lost his job of 28 years.  It was an awful time for my family.  His grandmother became very ill and his mom spent much of her time as a caretaker.  Andrew bought a home and I moved in with him, no commitment at that time other than him being my boyfriend, but I knew it would come with time.  At our two year anniversary things were really looking up and that second year I cherished so much.  We really grew into a good couple and people around us could see our love.  I went back to school that year and Andrew supported me all the way, allowing me to give up working full time so I could focus on school and an internship.  I graduated and got a job, which I later grew to hate but had to stick out for a whole year.  In our third year, my grandpa was diagnosed with stage 3 lung cancer.  I was devastated but Andrew was always there to listen, to let me cry, to let me be angry and he visited my grandpa with me nearly every time I went to their house.  In April of 2011, shortly after our 3 year anniversary Andrew proposed and I was so happy I thought nothing could top that moment.  By the next spring, my grandpa was really sick and I had started a new job.  I was planning a wedding, trying to be there for my family, trying to be a good housekeeper and juggling a new job that would include traveling for 5 days two weeks before my wedding.  I was so stressed and scared that I could never get everything done.

We got married on September 22 and my grandpa died on September 27.  Talk about a roller coaster of emotions, but steadfast as ever, there was the love of my life watching me and my whole family fall apart.  I knew in that moment that I could not have picked a better man to marry.

Through everything bad and good that has happened Andrew has always been my constant.  Yes, he makes me insane but I honestly can't stay mad at him.  We've had about three fights that I would call "major blowouts" and one of them was literally three weeks after our wedding.  I was so scared, I didn't know if a fight as a married couple would be different than one as an engaged couple or a dating couple.  It wasn't pleasant but things are much calmer since and it brought up more things that we just needed to further discuss and clarify. 

Someone also told me at our wedding that you have to make yourself fall in love with your spouse every single day.  They said to always "date" one another and that will keep the romance alive.  Its now my personal mission to try my best to do this on a daily basis.  I know that life is not meant to be easy by any means and that love is a rare gift that we should all treasure.