Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Here you go, Honey Bear.

I had nice chuckle over Boo Mama's post today about coffee, coffee shops, and specialty drinks of choice. It brought back many memories during my college and early-twenties days as a Caribou Coffee shop barista. To me, it was like working at the Cheers bar, only there we served coffee. I knew so many of our customers because we had so many regulars that actually came and hung out at the Caribou because they liked the atmosphere and they liked us.

We knew our customers more by the drink they ordered than by their names sometimes. Like, the middle-aged couple who always drove separately to the coffee shop but arrived at the same time because they were going in opposite directions to work. They always ordered an XL skim latte with half-shot decaf/regular coffee, so we always called them the "XL skim latte couple" and their drinks were already made and waiting for them at the counter when they arrived.

Some of my fondest days were the few years that I opened the shop at 5am with Cheryl. Oh. my. goodness....we had a blast. We got some curious smiles as to why we were so friendly at 6am in the morning. There was always something to laugh about.

Like the time Cheryl called one of the regular 6am guys "Honey Bear"...to his face. I don't even remember his name, but he would come in at 6am with a box of doughnuts for us and always bought a cup of coffee, plus honey from the "honey bear" bottles. He was an older gentleman, so it wasn't like he was hitting on us or anything....(unless we were really that naive?). One morning, Cheryl got eager with his cup of coffee ready at the counter for him when he came in. The gentleman had paid for his coffee and at the same time, Cheryl realized she forgot to provide the honey bear to him. She grabbed the honey bear and proceeded to hand it to him, saying, "Here you go....honey bear"...as in "here is the honey bear". Only, it really came out of her mouth as, "Here you go, Honey Bear". There was a slight moment of embarrassment when I just started bursting out laughing, then Cheryl laughed and then the gentleman laughed. That was when we started calling this gentleman "Honey Bear", but only BEFORE he got into the coffee shop.

Then, there was the time when I smoked up our coffee shop of burnt popcorn. There still hasn't been a drink created out of that experience.....

Friday, September 4, 2009

What I've Been Up To

I've been growing a baby boy!

Here I am at 20 weeks along (on 7/27/09). It's now over a month later and holy hannah, do I look different at 26 weeks! So much has changed and happened in 6 weeks with the little mister:

* Midwife, Katherine, declared him to be a very active boy and "Get your running shoes on because he's going to give you a run for your money!". Ha! I just laugh, because I know the joke is on me.

* Little mister typically rests (or maybe he just twiddles his thumbs) for about an hour and a half. Then, he juggles, twists, does cheerleading kicks (soccer kicks as Jason adamently insists), or does somersaults for about 10 minutes.

* I can press on my tummy and occasionally feel his body. Wonder of wonders!!

* Jason and I have narrowed on a name for this little guy, but it's a secret until his red carpet revealing around December 9th.

* Jason can talk to his boy (or my belly) now, which naturally begs one to ask, "why couldn't he before?". Long post for later...complete with pictures.

I really enjoy being pregnant and thank you, Lord, for blessing me with an easy pregnancy because He knew I needed to be on top of my game this summer with all that Jason went through.

Friday, July 31, 2009

Show Us Your Life - Wedding Party

Oh - I've been looking forward to this all week! Jason and I got married on August 18, 2006, at the EFC church that I've been going to for 10 years and that Jason switched to when we were dating. Okay - it wasn't the frozen tundra, but it was a nice balmy 80 degrees here in Minnesota that August day.

Our church pastor, Dan, married us and we had lots of music in our ceremony. After our pastor greeted everyone, our friends, Jon and Christa, led a small worship band in two worship songs. This really took our nerves away as the focus was taken momentarily off us and onto the music. My bridesmaid, Talia, sang this BEAUTIFUL song by Sara Groves called "He is Faithful", which is a mix between 'Great is Thy Faithfulness' and some other lyrics. Oh, my - I still cry when I hear that song!

Jason and I had a private first moment together before we began taking pictures before our ceremony. He was facing the front of the sanctuary and I walked down the aisle. This picture is when Jason turned around to see me for the first time. Jason had a Bible with him and he read out loud the last chapter of Psalms. During our engagement, we read one chapter in Psalm each night to each other on the phone. Our plan was to read the last chapter on our wedding day when we saw each other for the first time.

You'll also see that I LOVE hydrangeas and as my father-in-law put it, "You brought the garden inside", because our ceremony is laden with flowers. My wonderful cousin-in-law and friend, Becky, did all of our flowers for our reception and ceremony. She is amazingly talented and !!!

Bridesmaid Jenny's husband, Dave, designed our invitations, programs, reception seating cards, and thank you cards. This is our program. We had everything printed at our friend, Brian's, print company.

This is our neighbor's Chevy Impala that Jason and I sped off in after our ceremony as we drove ourselves to the reception. I'm really glad that it was just the two of us driving together in the car, because we just needed that "breather" moment apart from being surrounded by 200 people!

I had to show you two pictures of the bells that everyone rang as we dashed out of the church and into our get-away car. The bells were silver, but my cousin, Kim, and her daughter, Holly, spray painted all 250 bells a soft shade of muted gold! Thank you, Kim and Holly!!

Here are the beautiful bridesmaids!

L to R: Holly (friend), Becky (friend), Jamie (cousin), Jenny (friend), Stacey (friend), Talia (friend)

Here are the groomsmen! Check out the handsome man all in black - hee, hee.

L to R: Kyle (friend), Ross (friend), Best Man - Dave (brother), Ryan (friend), Brian (friend), Mike (friend)

Ha, ha - so which of you guys came up with this idea? I have an idea. When each groomsmen walked their bridesmaid up the aisle and came up next to where Jason stood, they each handed him a card with a word that when put together said, "It's too late to back out".

These are our two flower girls, Kristen and Jamie, who are daughters of our good friends, Jer and Angela. The ring bearer is my Caeden, my cousin's son. They were so good! Though I'm not sure what Caeden thought of everything!

This picture was taken in front of the golf club that our reception was at. You can't see it very well, but it's a beautiful club that has a lot of Scottish detailing.

My family L to R: Jayson (bro), my new husband!, Mom Debbie, Dad Harvey, and Kyle (bro)

I love this picture of my dad - he and Jason are always laughing and carrying on like this. He was probably even more giddy here because he was so nervous about walking me down the aisle in a few moments!

I love them all so much! Jason and I like to credit the wave of weddings that we started when we got married in 2006. Soon after our wedding, both of my brothers popped the question to their girlfriends and I got blessed with two AWESOME sister-in-laws....whose names are both Jennifer Marie. Yep - we have two Jenni's and two Jayson/Jason's in our family.

I love this picture of Jason with his mom and dad because I remember that Roger, Jason's pop, could not stop having fun during the photo shoot. I'm sure he's tickling and poking Jason to get him to burst into laughter. That was just the kind of man he was. We lost Roger to a tough, short battle with brain cancer in April 2008. He was a wonderful, godly father and husband.

Here is the whole family, including Jason's brother, Dave, on the far left. We're missing dear Carrie, Dave's wife. They weren't engaged yet, so again, Jason and I like to think we spurred the engagement on. :)

Boy, I could go on and on here. I want to show you this and I want to show you that, but you've got other blogs to look at!

Friday, July 24, 2009

My Wedding Dress

Okay - I love reading Kelly's Korner blog and I'm happy to participate in her "Show Us Your..." each Friday! Today it's the tour of wedding dresses and since Jason and I are approaching our 3rd wedding anniversary, it was so fun for me to look through our wedding pictures. Jason and I were married on Aug. 18, 2006. The candid pictures I'm sharing are pre-wedding preparations taken from my friend who was on duty for taking random pictures of me getting ready and the digital professional pics are on CD, being neglected. Here we go!

I found my dress on the first dress hunt my mom, best friend and I ventured on in Jan. 06. I love the beading and the organza overlay over my dress.

I loved our wedding day - it was the best day of my life because I became Jason's wife and all the celebrations have given me so many wonderful memories of the moment we shared our vows and celebrated with our friends and family. I wanted to look beautiful for Jason and my dress was exactly what I envisioned.

I can't wait to look at everyone else's wedding dresses!

Monday, June 1, 2009

Not Me! Monday

Welcome to Not Me! Monday! This blog carnival was created by MckMama. You can head over to her blog to read what she and everyone else have not been doing this week.

Before heading out on a camping trip last Friday, I honestly wondered how I was going to handle three days without being able to play Bejeweled Blitz on Facebook. I am NOT addicted to Bejeweled Blitz and my last three published posts on my FB wall have not been my latest high score. No, not me!

Home Improvements

We've been doing a lot of them! Which has kept me away from blogging for the last month or two. I didn't feel like constantly blogging how much my dining room looks like it got puked on by the contents of our kitchen - pans, dishes, silverware, pots, pans....everywhere! I'll spare you the details. I promise to share pictures.

There is one big home improvement that I'm excited to share soon - it's still kind of in the works, so I don't want to spill anything yet.

Friday, April 17, 2009

It's Friday

....and sunny, with blue skies and the whisper (or should I say trumpet announcement) of 70 degrees. Yay - spring is finally here. Please, please stay.

Tonight, Jason and I are going out to dinner. I may even talk him into a walk around the lakes. Dinner with my handsome husband and a walk afterwards = BLISS. It has been a few weeks since we had a date - the kind where we actually go out and do something. I was starting to feel the itch. Jason must have sensed this because the other night, he asked what we were doing on Friday night and said, "Maybe we should go out to dinner and use that gift card." Yes, please! On Monday when he talked about power-washing and sanding the deck on Friday night....(crickets chirping)....I should have told him at the time how grateful I was that he suggested dinner out.

I'm also kind of bashful because of my new photography hobby. Jason has been very encouraging and (mostly) willing to be a random photo subject. A few weeks ago, he signed me up for an introductory digital photography class, so I went to the class this past Monday. I was so tickled when Jason emailed me during the day and said how excited he was for me that I got to go to the class. When I got home, he wanted me to show me my favorite new tips and tricks. I love that he is so interested in what I'm interested in!

Here's to a fun evening with my rockin' husband!

Friday, April 10, 2009


One year ago today, my husband lost his father, Pop, to a five-month battle with brain cancer. Pop was a wonderful, godly man whom we loved so dearly. I had the privilege of being his daughter, if only by marrying his son. He left this Earth too soon, but we believe that the Lord brought Pop home to Heaven in His wisdom. We glorify and praise the Lord for the many gifts He gave us during those final months with Pop. Today, I am reminded that had Jesus Christ not died on the cross for our sins, Jason and I may never have been able to see Pop again.

Jason has made it through a year of missing Pop. Not a day goes by that he doesn't think about Pop in some way. There are tears and a sad face when I know he is thinking about Pop. And yet, Jason's unwavering faith in the Lord and sensitive spirit encourages me. His support for his mom swells my heart. Pop's memory lives on because Jason is so much like him. His good-natured look at every situation, bringing laughter into our home, a deep sense of responsibility for family and friends, a solid faith in the Lord, and even his walk.

I drove to work today, bawling my eyes out, as I heard for the first time this song from MercyMe. It relates so much to what Jason has shared with me as he looks forward to seeing Pop in heaven someday.

Friday, April 3, 2009

Fashion Friday

There are times when I get it in my head that I need a certain article of clothing. Right now, it is a dress that I could wear to weddings this spring and summer. Granted, I can do this because the weddings are in different circles of friends and family, so there shouldn’t be much overlap in who is going to see it. Except for the fact that all my pics on Facebook of these weddings will show me in the same dress.

I would love to have two dresses, but my budget says only one. And it almost always happens that I never find what is in my head what I want....or it was in my head and when I tried it on, it doesn't fit right.

Four separate shopping trips. Five malls. Only 5 dresses that really caught my eye. I bought them all and asked my friends to help me choose because there have been too many times when I walk out of the house wearing a dress that looks like I’m going to a high school dance. And, believe me, I don’t want to repeat those memories!

Three of them were from a Junior's store: Charlotte Russe, Francesa, and Maurices. The others were from White/Black Market and Herberger’s. I will often go to Junior’s stores for skirts or dresses because the styles are a little shorter and since I’m on the short side, they hit me at the right length on my legs.

Like Big Mama said, one advantage for shopping at Junior’s stores or departments is the price. The coral dress from Charlotte Russe was half of my budget. I used the rest to buy accessories to go with the dress and for some heels at Target for this dress and a black dress that I already had in my closet.

In the end, I ended up with two dresses: the coral one from CR and a black dress that was already in my closet that I spiffed up with new heels, earrings and belt. The black dress is more dressy, so I’ll wear it to the more formal wedding. I know, I know. Wearing a black dress to a wedding is iffy. I’m balancing it out with a cream shrug, gold accessories, coral belt, saucy high heels, and a cream clutch. I can wear the coral dress to the summer wedding, which will be a little less formal.

Oh, and now I must make visits to 2 malls to return the vetoed dresses.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Dress for Less

Be still my heart! Thank you, Kelly, for introducing me to Sam Moon. You mean to tell me that I can get a necklace and matching earrings for under $10? My husband will be forever ungrateful.

I know a little something about dress for less, cuz I do it all the time! My favorite places to hunt for deals are Ann Taylor Loft, JCPenney and New York and Company, which are my stops today for showing how I dress for less. For me, it all starts with a cute patterned shell or tank that I can use in the winter, spring and summer. Like this one, that I intend to buy when it goes on sale:

I have a similar patterned shell that I bought from ANL from their winter line that has similar colors. For winter or to wear to the office, I pair the shell with a purple or green cardigan and gray work pants. For casual and weekend get-togethers, I pair the shell and cardigan with dark denim jeans like the ones that I bought from New York and Company this winter on sale for $24.50.

Use the same shell that you wore in the winter and pair it in the spring/summer with a short-sleeved shrug and this cute, denim skirt that you can purchase if/when it goes on sale. The shrug will look adorable over any dress. Wear this ensemble to work and then take the shrug off when you're at a BBQ.

The key with the shell, shrug, denim skirt and cardigan is that you can mix and match for several different outfits. Pretty soon you've come up with 15 different outfits with only five staple items!

And here I am with my "winter" outfit. So comfortable that I can even "box" in it!

Saturday, February 28, 2009

Giving them a try

Oh - this taffeta dress at Target is my eye candy! Love it! Thank you, Big Mama, for posting this.

Skinny jeans. I am NOT the model size that can pull it off that easily. Yet, I'm really leaning towards getting some skinny jeans so I can tuck them in the Uggs that I do not have yet. I almost wrote them off, until I saw this post about "curvy girls" wearing skinny jeans, courtesy of The Budget Babe. Thank you, America and Kim, you look fab in them and I'm getting more bold by the day.

Today, I am going to purchase my first pair of black leggings to go under my red cotton tunic - the one I was wearing when my aunt asked if I was pregnant.

Friday, February 27, 2009

MHR #12 - Digging Out

They wouldn't call it the snowstorm of the century, but we still got 4 inches of heavy snow on Thursday. I pulled up into the driveway after work and I could see that Jason had shoveled the driveway. Jason didn't answer my "Honey, I'm home!" call when I stepped into the house entryway. I knew he had to leave in 20 minutes for his soccer game, so I wondered what was up. He wasn't in the house or the garage. I walked out onto the driveway, only to see Jason was working on the neighbor's driveway. I had driven right past the neighbor's house and didn't even see Jason through the blustery wind and swirling snow.

Our neighbors are the kind of parental neighbors every neighborhood should have. Not the meddling kind. The kind that are interested and want to watch out for you. They've had a tough year, with the husband having some health issues.

I got my boots out and went over to help finish shoveling their driveway. Yeah, it was still snowing out...but we like to think we got a head start on digging out. We finished it together so Jason could head out to his game.

An extra inch or two came over night, leaving more shoveling to do. Where was Jason as I was pulling out of the driveway for work on Friday? Shoveling the neighbor's driveway, right after he finished ours.

We enjoy our neighbors. We want to be the same kind neighborly kindess that we see our parents have with their neighbors. I don't call Bob and Fran as often as I should. I forget to look up and wave as a car passes by. Sometimes I'm too concerned about meddling, than just making the first neighborly move. I think of great ideas to reach out to the neighbors in the middle of the night, but can never seem to remember them when I'm just being lazy and have the time to actually do something.

But I'm glad Jason is my husband and we're in this together, because he reminds me and little by little, maybe we'll follow through. I'm glad he cares about others. Jason helps me be a little less selfish.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Ready to get buried

Yay! A snowstorm is coming our way. Not just an inch or two. We're talking 4-8 inches. I'm not sure if this snowstorm really qualifies as a typical March "lion" characteristic. You know - March comes "in like a lion and out like a lamb". It's still February. March can give us 31 days of possible "lion" weather patterns.

Friday, February 20, 2009

MHR - #11 - Seattle Surprise

This favorite married moment tops my list. On the morning of V-Day, Jason surprised me by taking me to the airport and whisking me away to a weekend away in Seattle! Holy Space Needle, I was NOT expecting this at all! I didn't know where we were going until we got to the check-in counter and the agent said, "Going to Seattle?" I squealed and couldn't stop smiling the whole weekend.

Jason arranged the surprise getaway with my cousin Jamie's husband, Paul, to meet in Seattle and spend the whole weekend with them. Jamie had no idea where they were going either, so it was surprise for both of us. They flew in from Denver just minutes after our flight came in to Seattle. I was pretty naive when Jason had to make two "pit-stops" before getting to baggage claim. He was texting with Paul on their status to making it to the baggage claim for our surprise run-in with each other. Jason and I were at baggage claim picking up brochures. Someone walked up behind us and said, "Hi guys!". I turned to the familiar voice. It registered in my mind at the same moment that I was looking at Jamie and Paul! Jamie and I screamed.

The weekend was full of walking around DT Seattle, the Public Market, dinners, the Underground Tour, Experience Music Project and just plain hanging out. The guys treated us to a chick flick on V-Day evening - Confessions of a Shopaholic.

My heart was ready to burst the whole weekend. After being so busy this month and with having part-time jobs every Saturday, Jason and I just needed to have the whole weekend together. I knew something was up and that Jason was planning something, but I didn't know we'd be flying to our destination! Jason told me in advance to take V-day off and Monday off. I thought maybe we'd be going to our honeymoon hotel or Duluth. Jason also told me how to pack, so I was well-equipped. We came back re-freshed. I relished the carefree weekend, because upon getting back, I didn't realize how much my mood had been affected by our current events and I had purposefully stayed away from keeping up to date on those things while we were gone.

I read all articles from Katy Lin's MHR #11 post and loved them all. Let's just say, I'm a little ashamed that my husband said one of the things he'd like for me to do more often is....pick up my clutter and my clothes. Oh - and maybe I should check to see if they have clear zit-cream instead of the white kind that is plastered to my face at bedtime.

My dear husband, if you're reading this post, do you know how much I admire you for your hard work? It was a tough day at work for you today. Your clients appreciate the heart you put into the work you do for them.

Somebody deserves the VIP treatment this weekend.:)

Thursday, February 12, 2009

MHR #10

Okay, I have to admit that I like Valentine's Day. After four years of being head over heels in love with Jason, I still get giddy butterflies buying Jason a Valentine's Card in the "husband" card section!

Jason is surprising me with a weekend full of activities! He's keeping it a surprise. I know that we're not staying at our house for the weekend. I don't think we're flying anywhere. But I'm supposed to bring my swimsuit and a nice dress. Wohoo!! I love that we get to do these surprises now that we're married.

I actually hosted our first Valentine's at my place. I made dessert for Jason and we played our favorite card games. It was very sweet and we were so careful not let romantic feelings lead us to anyplace we didn't want to go that would violate our convictions about physical expression. Jason took me out to a fun restaurant called Louis XIII and we sat in one of the kissing booths. It was very special!!

Reading the "Secrets" article made me realize again (and again) that Jason and I are not married for the purpose of always making each other happy, but rather to make each other holy. I most often fail in the happiness department, because too often I display my emotions over not getting my way. I assume that getting my way will make me happy. Ha! I so, so, so desire to change. Jason is a mirror for me - showing areas that I need to be refined in.

Great stuff to think about!

Friday, January 30, 2009


Just like Katy Lin, Jason and I am reading through The Love Dare and we had a lot of fun with one of the dares that evaluates your unconditional love for your spouse. Your love has to be no strings attached. "I love you. Period."

I knew Jason was The One as a result of seeing his heart over and over again - who he is as a man, in the way he treated others and how he walked his faith in God on a daily basis. It wasn't a "bam!" hit you over the head moment. I remember from our first date thinking, "This guy is different than other Christian guys I've dated". We were going on a double-date with friends to an outdoor concert of some Christian artists, which was way on the other side of town. I was pushing to meet Jason someplace in-between, so he could save gas and didn't have to drive all the way to the other side of town to pick me up. Jason was insistent on picking me up, because we were, after all, going on a date and he said it would give us a chance to talk since we would spend most of our time listening to music.

What this showed me was that Jason was willing to go out of his way to spend time with me. He was appreciative of my consideration about saving gas, but he was more interested in getting to know each other rather than saving a few bucks. It spoke chivalrous volumes to me, because in the past, I had dated Christian gentleman that didn't quite get that.

The sweet thing that Jason did in our courtship was drive 30 miles out of his way each Sunday to pick me up and drop me off from church. His chivalry really got me! And it hasn't stopped!

Thursday, January 15, 2009

My husband rocks!

What a convicting article that Katy Lin posted for this week's MHR.

Jason and I decided this past Sunday that I would take care of getting the oil changed on my car this week, while he would handle the bumper issue as a result of my - ahem - accident at a Holiday gas station. I called Jason on Monday afternoon just to check in like we usually do each day. He went and changed the oil in my car. Bless my man's heart!!!

He took care of this manly chore....I didn't even beg. I didn't even hint. It's these moments that happen so often that remind me of Jason's servant heart...and how much I want to be more like him.

My best friend and I made a pact a few weeks ago to not insinuate, hint or say anything to our husbands that would elude to us comparing our lives or situations with anyone else's. Sometimes it's hard not to let the comparative thoughts come into your mind. But you can decide if you'll let those thoughts build a nest in your hair and spew it out to your husband. So, the thing I (work hard to) do to show respect to Jason is to resist the temptation to say anything that would elude to me comparing us to another.

Going cold turkey

I got the package last week. It sat on the floor for three days, until I was ready to open it. Better just get it started and over with.

It's the McComb's Plan supplements for the body detoxification plan I foolishly decided to start....and this time finish.

This detox is no gimmick. I don't fall for those. Really. This just plain makes sense. Get rid of the bad bacteria in your body. The bad bacteria just builds a colony in your body, causing it not to work properly. In my case, my digestive system apparently does not work properly....as a result of my poor choice of foods. Ahem.

Flush it out! Help your skin and other organs push the bad toxins out of our body. Yep! That's right - get those suckers!

Then, you build up the good bacteria. Seize the bad bacteria colony. Take it over with the good.

My cousin's wife told me about the McCombs Plan. Year after year, she's battled the same symptoms that I have. She gave it a go. She feels great and found out how her body reacts to certain foods, so she can learn to avoid those things. I became hooked to check it out.

Here I am. Therefore, I pledge:
- to drink a lot of water
- to not eat sugar, soy sauce, vinegar, yeast, wheat....a HUGE list of etc items that includes everything you can think of
- to take long, luxurious hot baths with my favorite bubble bath so I sweat those toxins out
- to eat plenty of veggies, fruits, brown rice, olive oil, meat (except pork because it's a dirty meat)and...and...and....that's all I am supposed to eat.
- to faithfully take my supplements and vitamins

Monday was my first official day of the plan. I'm feeling good. A few headaches now and then, but I know it's just my brain saying, "SUGAR!! I need it. Now!!". Awww...be quiet. I keep telling myself that it will be good for me. It will! It is GOOD to feel good! It is BAD to feel bloated all the time! Eight weeks of this hard-core-military-boot-camp-like-regimen. 15 weeks of no sugar. Oh, mercy!

Therefore, I am officially working on item #21 (detox #1) and item #32 (eat no sweets for a week). Well, #32 is going to turn into 15 long weeks. Hey - can I use those fifteen to count towards 1 week/month for the 1,001 days???

My poor husband.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Sitting down

...to write out what meals I'm making for the week. I would like to congratulate myself for having the intuition NOT to write out in #63 that I would actually prepare all of the meals I planned for the week. Let's see....last week I made two of the four stated meals. Two for two!

I suppose most people don't care what I'm planning for our family of two to eat this week. It just feels good to say that I'm trying to get in the habit of planning it out ahead of time instead of while I'm driving home from work that day. Whether or not the meals come to fruition is another habit waiting to start. Someday in the next year or two I'll have this meal-making task down like our mothers used to growing up. Hopefully before the kids come along. On the list for this week:

1) Slow-cooker pot roast (Ah, yes. The one on last week's list that didn't make it.)
2) Spaghetti and Parmesan flatbread
3) Soup/Salad/Sandwiches
4) Caribbean Chicken with Pineapple Salsa
5) Enchilada Casserole

Bon appetit!

Thursday, January 8, 2009

My Husband Rocks

Don't you love stumbling upon great things? MHR - my husband rocks! - did that for me. I fell for it hook, line and sinker. Katy Lin started this MHR thing. Every Friday she posts a prompt, encouraging you to write a post proclaiming to the world why your husband rocks! It's just a neat way to encourage, build up, appreciate that man of yours.

I'm going to be bold and do this, because I love and appreciate my husband SO MUCH. Jason rocked my world this week (when doesn't he?). But, most specifically, because he excitedly grabbed my hands yesterday, did a little dance-jig and said that we made significant progress in our financial situation this week. We give a shout out to the Lord for this progress and His provision. I also give a shout out to Jason for being diligent and a good manager. You rock, honey!

1. Where did you meet? Almost 5 years ago, my new co-worker at the time (and now very good friend!), Kay, told me about her fiancĂ©, Brian’s, best friend, Jason….a very nice, Christian guy. Ears perked up. The three of them, along with some other co-workers, all played on a volleyball team, so Kay suggested I come watch them play and stay after for the pizza gathering so I could be introduced to Jason. Well, this old-fashioned girl said, “Un-uh! I’m not going by myself and I will not throw myself out there like that. He needs to pursue me first”. I grabbed 3 other co-workers, called it a “team-event”, made everyone pinky-swear that they wouldn’t say anything to Jason about who/why I was there and went to the game. Jason and I talked at length over pizza. No numbers exchanged, except a small little thing called chemistry and God’s appointment. Turns out that we both went to the same Christian liberal arts college, Bethel University, years ago and our roommates even went on a date or two. But we never met. A few months later, we fell in love and as they say, “the rest is history”!

2. Who long did you date before you were married? 2 years

3. What does he do that surprises you? Jason surprises me often – with little gifts (and big ones too!) and his helpfulness around the house. I remember early on in our marriage, I was surprised at how much Jason is a clean and picked-up person. I always thought his bachelor-pad was clean because he was trying to impress me. Then after we were married, I found out that my bachelorette-pad was always clean because I was trying to impress him.

4. What is your favorite quality of his? He is a good, loyal friend and a great listener.

5. What is your favorite feature of his? I love his smile and his laugh. He has strong, muscular soccer legs. And his skin is so soft.:)

6. Does he have a nickname for you? Sweetie

7. What is his favorite food? Pizza, chicken parmigian, pizza casserole, among other things!

8. What is his favorite sport? Which sport ISN’T his favorite? Jason loves to play soccer – and he still does with his buddies each week! He loves to watch NFL football, basketball, and hockey.

9. When and where was your first kiss? At my front door on our third date.:)

10. What do you like to do together? We love to play games like Skip-Bo, Phase Ten, etc. We like to play tennis, go for walks, work on the yard (well, maybe “like” isn’t the word, but we’re good teammates), watching movies, and getting together with family and friends

11. Do you have any children? Not yet!

12. Does he have a hidden talent? Yes – he’s a groovy dancer. “Hey – watch this!”

13. Who said "I love you" first? Jason, also at my apartment about five months after we officially started dating.

14. What is his favorite type of music? Jason likes all different kinds of music – except country - but he usually listens to the sports channel, talk radio or the Christian radio station.

15. What do you admire most about him? He relates well to people and he is a good manager. He handles difficult people-situations well. There are so many things that I admire about him – his faith in God, selflessness, ability to look at both sides of the situation objectively, motivation, dedication, entrepreneurship, sensitivity, and his fun-loving nature.

16. Do you think he will read this? Hopefully!

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

A Christian Woman's Reading List

Maybe I should have read through this before I put it on my 101 things list. Some of the books don't apply to me. But I was pleasantly surprised to see on the list a book by Wendy Shalit that I read years ago about women and modesty in the twenty-first century. I would highly recommend this book to get an interesting perspective on how many problems young women are up against are directly related to lack of modesty.

Girls watching football

This past Sunday was kind of unexpected for me. I dropped my friend, Jenna, at her parent's house, who live close to my mother-in-law, Joyce, on the other side of town. Being so close, I thought it would be a good time to see if I could spend time with her. There we were....two gals just watching the Minnesota Vikings! Yep, we got all comfy in the family room, chatted some, and then cheered on the Vikings. I'm glad we got to spend some time together! What I loved about the random-ness was that I forgot that I had specifically put spending time with Joyce on my list.

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Feeling Sunday

Oh, boy. I'll need to memorize my list. I nearly forgot that there were several key items on my list that I am supposed to do on a regular basis. It's 9:30pm on Sunday evening. I committed to spending time each Sunday putting together a meal plan for the next week (#63). I "got her done" this week, so Jason and I should be eating good. On the menu this week: butternut squash lasagna, orange chicken and brown rice, soup & sandwich/salad night, and a slow-cooker pot roast. Bon appetit!

Friday, January 2, 2009

In the beginning

It is my desire to make the most of my days on earth that has inspired me to take the challenge of creating a "101 Things in 1001 days" list. With my recent graduation in December 2008, I have been bombarded with thoughts, ideas, and visions of how I could spend my new freedom from homework and papers.

After a few weeks of envisioning - "I can do this, I can do that..." - I stumbled across
Day Zero, "a unique meme that challenges and inspires you to set and complete realistic goals in life". It helped me reign in these ideas that are near to my heart. It goes a little like this (taken straight from the Day Zero site):

The Mission:
Complete 101 preset tasks in a period of 1001 days.

The Criteria:
Tasks must be specific (ie. no ambiguity in the wording) with a result that is either measurable or clearly defined. Tasks must also be realistic and stretching (ie. represent some amount of work on my part). Why 1001 Days? Many people have created lists in the past - frequently simple goals such as New Year's resolutions. The key to beating procrastination is to set a deadline that is realistic. 1001 Days (about 2.75 years) is a better period of time than a year, because it allows you several seasons to complete the tasks, which is better for organising and timing some tasks such as overseas trips or outdoor activities.

Some common goal setting tips:

1. Be decisive. Know exactly what you want, why you want it, and how you plan to achieve it.
2. Stay Focussed. Any goal requires sustained focus from beginning to end. Constantly evaluate your progress.
3. Welcome Failure. Frequently, very little is learned from a venture that did not experience failure in some form. Failure presents the opportunity to learn and makes the success more worthy.
4. Write down your goals. It clarifies your thinking and reinforces your commitment.
5. Keep your goals in sight. Review them frequently, and ensure that they are always at the forefront of your thinking.

That being said, this is the beginning of the rest of my 1001 days (Lord-willing). Consider it a journal of my reflections as I aim to nurture my relationships, keep my body healthy, enjoy activities, make my home, grow my faith, and help my community. I am sheepish and humbled to even ask that my friends, family and acquaintances would walk alongside me in this fun journey. But I am bold to ask if you would consider making your own 101 things list so I can walk alongside you in your journey!

I begin this with a lound "Cheers!" to all that could (and hopefully, should) happen in the next 1,001 days!