This time of year has become marked by a whirlwind of birthdays, graduations, holidays and anniversaries.
There is a lot in my life to celebrate… especially today.
Two years ago today, I woke up in a hotel room with one of my best friends. It was chilly and cloudy, and there were butterflies in my stomach. My friend drove us to Starbucks while I prayed it didn’t rain. The moment that we arrived at the church, time sped up and seemed to fly by until I was sitting with my father and some of my closest friends, with a church full of people upstairs. My father prayed for me, for the man who would be standing at the alter and for the marriage that we would have.
One year ago today, I woke up in a hotel room with my husband. It was sunny and warm, and we were amazed that
365 366 days (2012 was a Leap Year) had passed so quickly. We ate year-old cake and celebrated surviving and thriving through a very tough first year of marriage (tough in this sense) .
This morning, I woke up next to my husband, in our own bed. In the house that we bought together and I honestly couldn’t be happier.
After dating for 3 years, being engaged for nearly 2 and 2 years of marriage, it’s no surprise that we’ve have been through a lot of ups and downs together, but I can honestly say that year 2 of marriage was more ups than downs. We have a lot to celebrate from this past year!
Happy second anniversary Brad! I love you and I love being your wife.
I’m taking a break from D-Blog Week (possibly rounding out my participation since I don’t normally blog on the weekends) to talk about an adventure in home ownership.
One of the things that we loved about this house when we put our offer on it more than a year ago was that it was updated within the previous 5 years (new furnace, air conditioning, new water heater) and had current code wiring, which isn’t that common in houses built when ours was.
On Mother’s Day, about two minutes into my morning shower it felt like the hot water had dropped off so I turned the cold off completely and took a luke-warm shower. Brad hopped in the shower after me and scolded me for using up all of the hot water. When I told him I’d had barely any for mine, he went downstairs to check on the water heater.
What he found was the beginning of a new Great Lake forming in our basement. Our GE water heater, manufacture date of 12/2011, had burst. We could still hear water running into the tank when he shut off the valve to the heater. So Brad shut off water to our whole house. We spent the rest of the morning with a garden hose running from the heater to the utility sink to drain, mopping up the water (that thankfully hadn’t damaged anything) in the basement, Brad called the company then called a plumber. Read the rest of this entry
My mom asked us about how things were going with home ownership now that we’ve passed a year since having our offer on our house accepted. The best way to describe our current home situation is a utility circus.
In the course of one week, we received our new trash and recycling cans… which will probably never be completely full. We rarely filled up our old can before. Another odd thing is that the recycling can is green, but prior to the new service recycling had to be placed in blue bags. Since there’s no label or symbol on the green can, people seem to be using it for trash although the pamphlet explained which is which. (Nerd Alert: I read pamphlets.)
The water company replaced our meter and the gas company was less than thrilled that they couldn’t access our gas meter to inspect it and now we have to schedule yet another time during work hours for Brad to be home to let someone in to check out the meter.
The cans are part of city trash service that our taxes pay for and the utility providers aren’t “charging” us for the new meter or the inspection (seeing as how they’re required and all). But it’s just a little annoying that we have to make phone calls, read pamphlets and arrange to work at home to accommodate the schedules.
Obviously the benefits of home ownership win over the drawbacks of apartment-living but sometimes it’d be nice not to have to worry about it.
I’m back on the customer service, good communication, former car dealership employee platform.
In late December, I traded in my car for a newer model. It wasn’t a stellar experience, but it also wasn’t horrible. Our salesman and the mangers knew that we were buying the car for me. My name was in the computer already because I’d taken my old car there for maintenance. Me, me, me! (Do I sound whiney?)
The new car is in both of our names. My information was first on all of the paperwork. I drive the car every day. I keep the car clean. I will take the car in for scheduled maintenance.
So imagine my surprise, when thank you emails arrived in my inbox, at an email address that is my name, that were addressed to Brad. I got phone calls on my cell number for Brad from the dealership. The card in the mail, the calendar, the junk they send…. all addressed to Brad (and only Brad). When we picked up my plates and registration, Brad’s name was first. (And they called him to report that the plates were in.)
Then to add insult to injury, I got “Happy Birthday!” emails for Brad, all throughout February. I have no idea why I’m surprised that with my birthday in two days I haven’t received anything addressed to me for my own car.
It’s probably something alphabetical, but it feels pretty sexist. I made the buying decision for this vehicle. I’m also the one deciding whether or not to return to that auto group for future vehicle needs and frankly, it’s not looking good.
The bottom line: Read the rest of this entry
My husband is officially older than me for the next week and a half. We had a whirlwind couple of days in celebration.
On Friday, we unexpectedly received tickets to the Cleveland Auto Show preview night. So we got some Mexican food and margaritas (Did you know Friday was National Margarita Day?) with our friends before heading to the IX Center. We had a good time checking out the cars and I got to do the Jeep Experience.
Here’s Brad’s video from the 2012 Jeep Experience (it didn’t change much… just the years of the vehicles)
I also rode the IX Center Ferris wheel for the first (and last) time. The view of the airport at night is pretty cool, but the gondola-style seating freaked me out. We were up very high and there aren’t seat belts!
On Saturday (Brad’s actual birthday) the guys went back to the auto show to do the ride and drive events. They got to drive a Cadillac CTS-V, which was the main event as far as the guys were concerned. That evening we introduced my in-laws to the Great Lakes Brewing Company and their amazing food (and beer, but that’s a given).
We capped off a wonderful evening with birthday cheesecake.
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When given my Pinterest board of recipes last year, Brad decided that he’d like the Bailey’s Irish Cream Cheesecake. This year he requested it again and I’ve gotten the recipe tweaked to where I like it finally!
Rachel’s Coffee Bailey’s Cheesecake (adapted from this recipe)
Ingredients: Read the rest of this entry
Happy Valentine’s Day dear readers!
I’m loving Valentine’s Day this year! It started off not so great but definitely improved. I have to say that I’m a completely spoiled little wife. Last year on our first married Valentine’s Day, Brad delivered roses to me at work. This year, I wasn’t expecting anything and in a strange repeat of last year, I was in my boss’ office when he shows up with roses again and Starbucks! He knows me so well.
I’m really excited about our dinner this evening, the menu is:
- Grilled filet
- Roasted asparagus
- Baby red potato bites with garlic sour cream
- Red wine
- Peanut butter hearts that I made last night
Being married to the love of my life means that I have a valentine on Valentine’s Day, which is great. But I think the holiday is getting to be over inflated.
I enjoy hearts, pink and roses possibly as much, but probably less, than the next girl. I do however like romance as much, if not more, than the next girl.
Last year, Brad and I started a bit of a Valentine’s Day tradition that I think has staying power because we agreed to do it again this year. Instead of trying to get a reservation for an over-priced meal for two last Valentine’s day, we hit the grocery store and picked out two filets and cooked up a tasty meal together of bacon-wrapped filet, roasted asparagus and rosemary smashed red potatoes, complimented by a bottle of red wine. We dimmed the lights in our apartment, lit some candles and enjoyed each others company. We chose not to exchange gifts.
Valentine’s day is a good reminder to keep romance in your relationship, but Valentine’s day and your anniversary can’t be the only days when you make romantic gestures during the year.
It’s a Day Read the rest of this entry
It all started when Brad complained about our oven… then the home improvement bug hit.
One of the things I love about homeownership is that we can do whatever we want with our house (so long as it doesn’t break city ordinances or tick off our insurance company… which is why we have handrails on our front steps).
Last fall, Brad mentioned how annoying it was that our oven didn’t have a preheat feature, you just put it on the temperature you want and wait awhile (it’s gas so it heats very quickly). That’s how we ended up with a kitchen appliance Christmas present. All of our kitchen appliances came with the house, although none of them are terribly old, none of them are really all that new and are pretty basic. We went back and forth on replacing the stove or replacing the dishwasher. But then, the kitchen made its own decision when our refrigerator started peeing on the floor. Since our fridge doesn’t have an ice or water dispenser, this was a problem. [After pulling out the fridge and checking the tag on the back we discovered that Brad and I are barely older than it. Barely.] Prompting us to fridge shop over the weekend.
Say hello to the newest member of the K-Kitchen:
Our fridge ended up being an awesome deal (more than half off)! It gets delivered tonight… I can’t say I’ve been this excited for a kitchen appliance since we unwrapped my KitchenAid mixer the day after our wedding. Read the rest of this entry
The other night we got a call from the animal shelter to see how things were going with our cats. I can’t believe it’s already been five months since we brought Holmes and Watson home with us (in fact, I can’t believe we’ve lived in our house for five months already!).
Brad spoke with the shelter for a few minutes and mentioned that after the little scare we had when we first brought them home, everything was going well. Even though the shelter took care of the vet stay, the lady on the phone wasn’t aware of what happened. Brad briefly summarized that the day after we brought them home, the cats would not move from their carrier. They weren’t eating, drinking, using the litter box or purring. They also flopped over when we stood them up on their feet. There was obviously something wrong so we called the shelter and took them to the vet that works with the shelter.
Our kittens had to be kept there for two days and given IV fluids and medication. They had calicivirus. Something that they’d been vaccinated for, but much like the flu there are different strains and the stress of moving to a new environment made their immune systems unable to fight it off without some help.
It was sad to have them for one night. Then have them “hospitalized” for the next two, be allowed to bring one home, then have to wait a day for the other to come home.
The shelter volunteer who called was happy to hear that Holmes and Watson were active, affectionate cats and that we enjoy having them around. When Brad got off the phone I asked him, “Can you imagine what it would be like to be her if our cats hadn’t made it?” It would have to be the worst feeling to check-in on adopted animals to find that some form of tragedy had struck.
It made me thankful for our healthy little guys.
[and now is the part where I post cute kitty pictures]
It happened last night. It was one of those moments when your heart stops and you want to close your eyes so you can open them to find out it didn’t actually happen.
But it did.
Brad and I were baking yesterday evening and had placed our wedding rings in their little bowl that lives in the kitchen, specifically meant to protect them from goopy food stuff or harsh dish-washing. I reached over the sink to grab the ring bowl and mine flew out of the bowl straight into the sink drain.
I froze for a second and then did the only thing I could think of. I yelled. “BRAD!“
He came rushing to my aid. It had fallen into the garbage disposal side of the sink. Which ended up being basically the best situation. Once he knew where my ring had gone, he threw open the cabinet and unplugged the disposal, snagged a flashlight and was eventually able to lift my ring to safety with his grilling tongs.
Sink drains are not surprisingly high on the Top 10 Places Women Lose Rings. Yesterday’s ring drama was very upsetting and thankfully the solution was quick.
Will I be more careful in the future? Absolutely. The bowl will be my farther from the sink next time as well.
Wedding band rebellion
Things my husband says