Wednesday, September 5, 2012


...Also known as one of the best days

Let me just tell you the night before
I was up until 2am reading
Gone Girl
referred to me by
Ms. Mary Therese Schmidt
(soon to be MT Barkhausen! more on that later)
also, blogger of
hummingbird wallpaper
.that book.
If you haven't read it, go.
go read it, then get back at me, k?

Michael had already planned a little surprise for us
for Saturday, August 4th, 2012
And I truly did NOT think anything of it
for many reasons.
One, he usually tries to surprise me
with at least something little like
a reese's pb cup, or lunch/dinner somewhere...
and two, there was so much going on
that it just didn't phase me.
So Saturday morning rolls around
and he told me that we would leave
around 11am. ok, fine.
let me get back to my book until then!
I asked him what should I wear
and of course, like the guy he is
he didn't know..
so he said
gym shoes.
did I listen? No, and to be honest
sheesh, your going to propose and ya tell the girl
gym shoes
hahaha - needless to say, he thew me off!
His mom and dad and aunt were
'going to estate sales'
and his mom asked us if we'd be back for dinner
and mike said
he didn't know.
His mom asking us if we'd be back for dinner ??
threw me off
Plus, there were things keeping my mom busy back home
and I was talking to her on the phone the past week
and she didn't hint toward a thing.
If his mom wasn'tgoing to be 'there'
and my mom wasn't 'there'
it wasn't happening.

Welp, an hour goes by on our 'road trip'
and another hour goes by
and we see clouds rolling in.
I asked if it was going to ruin our plans
and he said maybe,
he didn't know
I was getting suspicious.
But, when would he have had time to get the ring?
His mom asked if we were going to be home for dinner?
clearly, she would know about this, right?
My mom had previous arrangements back home
so she wouldn't be in town for it?
I was convincing myself
that this just was not it.

Close to being two and a half hours
into the drive
I came to the conclusion that he was taking me to wineries.
I kept seeing signs for wineries
and it there were rolling green hills.
it had to be wineries.
We didn't have an eventful summer,
so I just figured he was doing something different.
The drive there was
despite the intimidating gray skies.

We pulled up to Galena Vineyards
and I could tell he was acting a bit fishy
but I figured he was just annoyed with the rain
Then, "he had to go to the bathroom."
No surprise there, because he has a bladder
the size of a pea.

we are there and walk up to a house.
this is basically the shop of the vineyard's property.
It has the wine and holds the tastings.
So we walk up on this cool wrap around porch
as it starts to drizzle rain
and I turn the corner of the porch
and there I see my sisters
and then my mom
and my brother
and his parents
and his aunt!!!
with their cameras and phone up to their faces
(hello 2012!)
and then
I knew
I am so glad my took video
because otherwise,
it would have all been a blur:

Now, it started to rain. And,
Mike began by quoting my dad,
(tears. streaming. down. the. face)
"A wise man once said surround yourself with good people
and do the right thing.
Here are the good people..."
cue the dropping down on one knee
(in front of our audience, mind you)
and asked
"Will you marry me?"

I then proceeded to shake his hand,
(shake his hand? yup. that would be awkward me)
told him to get off his knee
and nodded yes
and sobbed.

that our family
(missing his brothers!!!)
were right there so we could hug them
oh, so tight.

He planned a tasting and tour of the vineyards
for all of us ahead of time.
But, unfortunately
it stormed so we had a make shift tasting
I was
-and still am-
on cloud nine.

Later on, my future
told me that my future
mentioned that the timing of the rain
was like my dad crying
of joy.
I melt.
(have you grabbed a Kleenex, yet? or, is that just me?)
{see: Love & Laughter post
re: my angels}

I couldn't have planned a better proposal for myself.
I really couldn't have.
He knows me so well.
While this gives more detail
it doesn't explain the feeling of all of it.

We are still ecstatic.
So excited to plan
house hunting.
the big day.
and all the big days after...

love and laughter.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Love & Laughter

It has totally been a month since my last post.
While I wanted to make this post short,
I just couldn't.
Because it all goes hand in hand.

you ready?

Little did I know that TWO days after my most recent post I would be
can you hear me loud and clear, yet?


And, the crazy girl I am, I already had the
gown (yes, gown)
and photobooth

within two weeks.
WE are ready to rock for
APRIL 13TH, 2013
LOOK out folks!

Many people have wondered, how in the heck has she done that?
Besides the fact that I've been to near 40 weddings in my lifetime thus far,
(and, if you remember in past posts, I was semi-unemployed for the summer)
I had two weeks before I got back to work
and, boy, did I use those two weeks!

And, thankfully, I did.
While we were, and still are, jumping for joy...
we lost a member of our family.
Grandpa Jack.
He has been mentioned a few times in this here ol' blog
(the man with the diet coke and m&ms)
He and his wife, Sis, were my roomies for nearly 2 years before I fled
and moved myself back up here to the Chi.
While his passing wasn't a complete surprise,
our family was of course emotional.
The man who left a legacy of
10 children
22 grandchildren
and 3 great grandchildren (and counting!)
would (physically) be gone.

One of my uncles gave the Eulogy.
While I haven't been to many funerals
(lucky me)
it was probably the best Eulogy I will ever hear.
I'm not sure if it's because of my uncle's delivery
or if it was because it was about one of the best men I will ever know.
(actually, I am sure - it was both)

Uncle Larry mentioned the Love that Grandpa Jack had
for his wife
and children
and grandchildren
his friends
his siblings
and God.
He also mentioned the Laughter he brought to a room-
with his quick wit and side jokes.
These seem like pretty generic examples of a Eulogy
but this was Grandpa Jack.
He was truly the definition of
Love and Laughter
He lead by example.
As Uncle Larry said, he showed his sons to be good husbands and fathers
and he showed his daughters what to expect from a good husband and father.
This couldn't have come at a better time,
I believe the same for my future husband...
The laughter he brings to a room
and the love he gives to those around him.

I have two angels who have guided me on how to 'pick' a good one
Grandpa Jack
my dad
and I honestly feel they have left me with my very own angel
right here on Earth.
(lucky me)
{clue: my FIANCE}

Call me a bit 'hoaky' in this post,
but Grandpa Jack's funeral services
being around family
and being around my supportive
have left my eyes wide open
with another new perspective on life:
Love and Laughter

Cheers to Grandpa Jack.
Cheers to Love and Laughter

p.s. can you tell I like the word fiance?
p.p.s I will give you more details on the engagement, soon

Thursday, August 2, 2012

dear summer

please don't go away.
i know we've battled the 100+ degree temps
but i love you
and flip flops

i have spent lots of my time this summer with little ones
and it just confirms how much i want to do it for the rest of my life.
so much so, that i spent loads of money on school supplies.
i am so excited to be a student come fall, 
and prepare myself for my

i've even started a little Ms. A bin
with stickers/posters/mini dry erase boards
walmart had 88 cent deals
and i was all over them!!!

DREADING going back to work at the high school in a few weeks
i'm sure i'll be a-o-k once i get back into the swing of things

until then i'll reminisce on the past few weeks...

(love love)

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

i'm sexy and i know it

or do i?
wiggle wiggle wiggle wiggle 

now, i know everyone has their own...
"self portrait"
i may see one thing
and someone else will see another
i realize i am not ginormous
i've gotten fairly "soft" these past few years.
working a 9-5er can really do some harm 
to your bod
especially when you

with a lil more time on my hands this summer
i have been trying to stay on track
cutting out soda
drinking more water
grilled chicken/not fried
no fast food
etc. etc.
not a diet, just better decisions.
{lifestyle seems to be the keyword around the blog.pinterest world}
and while i've been trending to do a bit better
i still fall off that wagon every so often

i want to be one of those people who likes to run
i'm getting there.
i think.
i've asked friends what kind of jams they listen to
i always thought i needed something with a beat
that keeps me pumped
but, if i want to last longer while running
and keep a consistent pace
i've realized that songs that i can sing-a-long to
are what's best for
i'm quite the "clicker." i tend to only listen to the first
45 seconds of a song
so i've been finding some
(mainly country)

have been leaning on a new
Couch to 5k

it's awesome!
i'm tempted to purchase the 1/2 marathon one
(baby steps ok?)
it's great because
i can run, and not have a timer!
--i've been told to do the whole 60 second run/90 second walk
but as terrible as it sounds
looking at the time every 20 seconds was
cutting it--
a lady's voice will chime in and
tell me when to
"start running"
"start walking"
"start your cool down"
i can play my playlist at the same time, too!

all things grand.
i swiped Just the Rules
by Tosca Reno
on Amazon for about $twelve

she recommended eating every 3 hours and
has all kinds of quick tips!

plain ol' oatmeal with fresh fruit
a dab of honey if you need it
(for breakfast)
so that's basically what i've been eating every morning
and it's not too shabby!
it keeps me full, and it's a great way to start the day

quite the wordy bird today, aren't i?

what's your lifestyle like?
do you have any jams that keep you going on a run?
what keeps you motivated??

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Monday, July 30, 2012

no bakes

(i've decided to not even apologize anymore. 
please just consider it understood.
that i will not be consistent with this blog. 
at least not in the very near future.)

i don't know about you, but when people say 'no bake' cookies
i think to myself

no way in heck can these no bake, magic, wonders be good
i have yet to come across a 'no bake' concoction that is in fact

BUT, most recently on one of my pinterest obsessive sprees i came across this blogger's

i'm not sure what drew me to it. maybe it was the white sandwich cookies?
maybe cause there are only a handful of ingredients?

welp, while my 'no bakers' are firming, 
i decided to keep you informed.

i stopped by walmart
picked up just under $ten worth of ingredients 
and got to
(no) baking:

i went for the $one golden oreo knock offs
i may step up my game next time, BUT

to make up for it,
i fudged her recipe a little.
i went for ghirardelli white chocolate chips instead of choppin
up a white chocolate bar
(that lazy? yes.)
(getting confused between almond bark vanilla and white chocolate bars?
hell to the yes.)
i have NO shame, i am FAR from an experienced

talk about fudging a recipe.
there was absolutely no hint, nothing similar to even slightly mentioning 
peanut butter in that recipe
but who 
peanut butter?
so, yeah, you see that on the left side of that photo above?
now, look below.

just couldn't help myself, k?

approx. four minutes left of 'firming!'

then, i'll be off to do my couch to 5k.
that calls for a completely different post.

Thursday, July 12, 2012

aunt marge

I went home
to st. louis
for a quick trip to visit
and my friends & family
and to celebrate my nephew (& godson)
Frankie's birthday

i know i have had plenty of posts about little kids
and about being aunt marge
but, to me, it will 
love love all the babies, toddlers, and kids in my life!

so blessed.

dontcha just LOVE lil girls in swimsuits.

the little paleontologist/archaelogist

he's seven!

sis and charlie

handsome boy (i deserve braggin' rights, right?!)

little nanners makin her sundae!
chocolate cake my SIL made 

my buddy forever.
i told him i will give him ONE more year of kisses
"you'll never stop kissing me aunt marge."

slime project at 8:30 in the morning!!

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

it's a girl!

little miss kennedy. 
what a doll. 
one of my greatest friends from high school/college had her first baby on July 5th. 
poor mom arrived at the hospital on tuesday,
and little miss kennedy just had to make a grand entrance
and wait until
thursday, july 5th
to arrive

but, i'm pretty sure her mother would agree she has been well worth the wait.
congrats to my friend meghan, her husband bob, and their dog griz

she is a peach:

Sunday, July 8, 2012

the past month, or so

going home and celebrating Sis' Bday.
Visiting with Mary Grace.
Spending time with Michael.
Michael's grandparents. *adore*

forgive me?

yikes! over a month! no excuses, really.
but, been getting back into the swing of things.
i miss taking photographs of the little ones - but hopefully that will change this week.
Until then, check out the snapshots from Mike and I's recent baking

Friday, June 1, 2012

glad text friday?

meh. totally been bailin on the glad text business
not that i'm not glad
better late than never.

I have only known one set of grandparents -
My mom's parents.
My dad's parents passed away by the time HE was 6
(I know, right?)
well, anywho...
my mom and her siblings are having a shindig
for my grandma's 80th (!) bday
but, the modest lady she is,
she doesn't really, totally, want it to be all about her birthday

Wellll, one of my aunts came up with a great idea to document
80 Reasons to Love Sis
after many emails, texts, and fb messages we are just about there!
It has been fabulous to recall fond memories of grandma sis
which therefore leads to funny ones about grandpa jack, too.
I have the GREATEST grandparents a girl could ask for
they open their home to their 10 children, their spouses
and their grandchildren,
who they absolutely adore.
I am very excited that Mike is able to drive me down to the Lou
to celebrate
even if it is only from Saturday - Sunday
I can't wait to take pics of my family and share them with you!

a recent glad text post mentioned music
i love it. all kinds of it.
especially listening to it in my car
on CDs.
I still LOVE CDs.
I do not have an iPod
although, I do have music on my phone
(If I read this 10 years ago, I'd be like what? music on the phone?)
but I just love the tangible part
about playing music via CDs.
one of my friends from college
teased me a few years ago about my insane amount of disks
that I have piled up in a case,
in the console,
underneath the player itself,
on the floor,
in thr trunk,
and most of them look like the one below.
random mix CDs.
friends would burn them in high school and college
and say this song reminds me of you
and this song reminds me of that time when we did this
and that time we went there...

I am in awe of the talented kids I have seen just since October
when I began working at this school.
the seniors have already had their last day
and I'm a bit sad, cause it was my first senior class.
not that I teach them,
but I do interact with plenty of them on a day-to-day basis
they had their AP Art Show, where they display their art
fashion, paintings, drawings, designs
and I just
this display.
I am so happy for these kids
and that they are able to showcase their talent