Today, I Sat In My Office and Cried

Today, I Sat In My Office and Cried

{Photo credit: Alisha Rudd Photography}

As you read this, please take away these two things:

1.
Be kind to every person you meet. Everyone is fighting a battle no one else knows about.

2.
Please, please, please never ask a couple when they’re going to have a baby. That is one of the most personal and intimate questions you can ask, and you probably have no clue whether or not they’re dealing with infertility or other issues preventing them from getting pregnant. If someone offers up that information freely to you, so be it. But, please, never pry.


It is no secret that Justin and I have wanted children for quite some time now. I even wrote about it in 2015 after returning from Disney World.

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My Advice to You: Take the Trip

My Advice to You: Take the Trip

As my husband and I prepare to travel to California for our big vacation of the year, I can’t help but feel anxious about the cost of the trip at this exact time in our life.

I truly can’t help it. I am naturally a worrier, and traveling across the country while we are also in the process of buying our first home has my “worry-wart” instincts working overtime. This is despite the fact that we have been budgeting for this trip since late last year.

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Favorite Moments From Our Walt Disney World Honeymoon

Favorite Moments From Our Walt Disney World Honeymoon

We just got back from Walt Disney World, where we spent seven days celebrating our honeymoon in the most magical way possible.

Spending Christmas at Disney and being in Magic Kingdom on Christmas Day has always been a top bucket list item for me (and Justin by default), and I am so happy we did it now before we start growing our family. No, I am not pregnant, but this trip was definitely the one big thing we wanted to do before we have children.

Despite the crowds and me coming down with a cold, we had so much fun.

Now that we’re home and settled back in to our normal routine, I am ready to share our favorite memories from the trip.

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Not Your Average Marriage Proposal

Not Your Average Marriage Proposal

“We’re all a little weird. And life is a little weird.
And when we find someone whose weirdness is compatible with ours, we join up with them and fall into mutually satisfying weirdness — and call it love — true love.”
— Robert Fulghum, “True Love”

Justin and I are weird.

OK, perhaps weird is a strong word to use to describe us. But, we do like to think of ourselves as not average and different from the majority of couples our age in that we have done life a little backward and out-of-order.

And our engagement story is representative of our weird life together.

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Planning Our Walt Disney World Honeymoon with Tips & Secrets

Planning Our Walt Disney World Honeymoon with Tips & Secrets

Truth be told, I did not want a Disney World honeymoon.

Because we visit the house of mouse every other year (on average) I wrinkled my nose and shook my head from side to side whenever someone asked if we were planning to do Disney for our honeymoon.

“We want to do something different, something we have never done together before,” I would say to anyone willing to believe me.

For several months I researched cruises, Sandals destinations, and numerous other tropical getaways. I pitched idea after idea to my fella, but I never truly felt excited about any of the options I presented.

Finally, one day, we reached a decision. We were going to go as far south as we could in the United States. We were going to Key West.

We picked out our hotel, started a list of restaurants to grub at and bars to stumble out of, and we even saved ideas for fun excursions.

Then, we totaled it all up and our jaws hit the floor.

“We could take three Disney vacations for the cost of this one,”
were my exact words to Justin.

And that was that — that is the story of how we decided on Disney World for our honeymoon.

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Wedding Registry Tips for Couples Who Already Live Together

Wedding Registry Tips for Couples Who Already Live Together

Four years. That is how long my fiancé and I will have lived together when we tie the knot this September.

As soon as we announced our engagement, one of the first questions folks asked us — after the who, what, where, when, and how — was whether or not we would have a wedding registry.

In my mind I thought, “Well, yeah, why wouldn’t I? Just because we live together does not make me any less of a bride. I want a traditional bridal shower just like anyone else.” Super defensive.

They were asking because Justin and I have already begun to make a home together and in their eyes, we have everything we could possibly need. What they don’t see, though, is that nearly all of our furniture, kitchen tools, decor, etc. are hand-me-downs that don’t necessarily fit our style and much of what we bought ourselves is cheap and not of good quality because that’s what we could afford.

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Merry Christmas from our family to yours

Merry Christmas from our family to yours

This year has been full. We are abundantly thankful for the blessings we have received and for the time spent enjoying life with family and friends.

As we look ahead to the excitement next year is sure to bring, Justin and I want to take some time to reflect on the moments that made 2016 special.

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Stocking stuffers for him

Stockings are possibly my most favorite part of Christmas morning. It doesn’t matter how old I get, I look forward to rummaging through that oversized sock more than anything else — slowly reaching my hand all the way to the bottom to reveal all sorts of prized knickknacks I probably do not need.

I don’t just love getting a stocking, though, I cherish stuffing Justin’s stocking, too. And yes, the 13-year-old that lives inside of me is fighting the urge to make an inappropriate joke out of that statement. I’ll spare you, though.

Even during the Christmases that Justin and I were already struggling to put food on the table each day, we still managed to fill our stockings with small trinkets in an attempt to keep this holiday tradition alive.

So, believe me when I say that Christmas stockings are my thing and I believe that I have mastered the fine art of filling them — sometimes even over filling them — with goodies. I take the time each year to find a variety of items for my fella’s stocking — from toys and games to candy and coffees and CDs and socks and beyond.

stock-stuffers-for-him-01

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A house divided: Democrat vs. Republican

A house divided: Democrat vs. Republican

One of my favorite questions that Justin, being the proud Republican that he is, gets asked by his family and friends is “How can you be with a Democrat?”

First off, that question is disgraceful and appalling, but the answer always is simple. Justin tells them that I am not just my political views; I am not just a Democrat. I am a strong, intelligent woman who has shaped my opinions based on my own experiences, and he is proud to have found someone who challenges him on many levels, but particularly in the political arena.

As election day creeps closer (Early Voting begins today in North Carolina) and heated political conversations are ending friendships left and right, I want to take a moment to discuss how our divided house has gotten through this volatile election season without calling it quits on our impending marriage.

One word: Respect. I’m not talking about Aretha Franklin’s R-E-S-P-E-C-T, find out what it means to me. No, I mean that each day I wake up I make the conscious decision to listen and take into consideration my partner’s political views and he does the same for me. I respect him as a human, therefore I respect his opinions even when I don’t agree with them. Yes, that means it is possible to disagree with someone but still respect them.

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