A Big Summer For the Cornelissens

Friends, the last few months have been packed full of crazy changes. I have been meaning to sit down and get back into blogging, but stuff just kept happening! So here’s a whirl-wind update on our summer. 🙂

May was a BIG month.
My parents celebrated their 30th wedding anniversary and went to Ireland for a few weeks, so we visited my brother Andrew in Columbia and celebrated his 18th birthday at Carowinds. What a blast! A week later, Josh graduated with his M-Div from Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary, and started a full-time job at CarMax! He is working as a sales consultant, and frankly crushing it.
Aaron moved out! He is adulting like a boss, working 2-3 jobs, paying his bills, making meals, and we are so excited with him and proud of him.
We bought a car for Josh, because Aaron is using the Explorer. 🙂 We got a Nissan Versa from a motivated seller on Craig’s List, in our price range, and with crazy low miles.
I researched and prayed and decided to sign up with LuLaRoe. At the time, I thought it would be good to have something to keep me busy in the evenings and the weekends, because Josh’s work schedule requires a lot of evening and weekend hours at work. I was working full-time in May, but Josh knew I couldn’t shake the idea of starting my own LuLaRoe business. So the day he graduated, I submitted my on boarding paperwork.
ALSO in May we bought our first brand-spanking-new major appliance, a dryer. This may not sound exciting, but I could not have been MORE excited. Long story short, we have paid ridiculous power bills this year because a bird made a nest in our exterior dryer vent, and our dryer was running for hours without drying the clothes. Once we fixed the bird issue, we realized the dryer was just dead and we could keep paying ridiculous bills or bite the bullet and buy a new dryer. Obviously we bought a new one, and we haven’t doubted the decision once! (Also our power bill is HUNDREDS of dollars lower each month. Isn’t that insane?!)
I think was in June… but it might have been May… we took a short trip to Charlotte and hit Ikea for some LuLaRoe supplies and ended up meeting my parents for dinner! It was a great time away, even though it was short.

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June was frankly a month of struggle. Josh and I were both working full-time, and I cried a lot. Our schedules completely collided and my love cup was completely dry. I was gone from 7-5:30 everyday, and Josh was working mostly from 12-9 every night. By the time he got home it was 9:30 or 10, and I had fallen asleep because I had to get up early the next day for work. We agonized over what to do, and finally decided that the best decision was for me to quit my full-time job.
Growing up, my mom would always ask “What’s the goal?” Josh and I had a lot of conversations, serious conversations, over g-chat while we were both at work, because there wasn’t time to actually sit down and have a conversation. I felt so strongly that the goal of this season- just being married without anyone living in our house and before we have kids- is to focus on our marriage and make sure we are the strongest we can be. Secondary goals are to pay off Josh’s student loans and to gain direction for future ministry… but if our marriage isn’t strong, we won’t be able to accomplish much. Ultimately, we decided that both of us working full time may accomplish paying off the loans at a faster rate, but we might accomplish it at the cost of quality time and the ability to strengthen our marriage.20160725_085847

July was a month of endings and beginnings. Josh finished training at CarMax, I concluded my employment at my office job, and I got the call from LuLaRoe to order my initial inventory! We got to spend a long weekend with the Gilmores, and the dream of me spending more time at home because a reality. august

August was a month of excitement. The first week I was home, not working full-time anymore, Andrew came to spend the week with us. We did a lot of fun stuff, but we spent the most time playing Pokemon Go. 🙂 In the middle of his visit, my initial inventory arrived! At the very end of his visit, he bought his first car. Josh was able to find the perfect vehicle, in Andrew’s budget. Isn’t that insane? When did he get old enough to buy a car?!?!?!
A week and a half later, I had my official business launch. It was what I hoped! I had several friends come to my in-home launch and fall in love with the clothes the same way I did. It was such a joy to see the giant smiles on their faces, and you could tell how amazing they felt about themselves.

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Right now, I am loving the flexibility of my schedule. I’m establishing new routines and habits to take better care of myself and our home and enjoying the experience of owning my own business. Most of all, I’m thankful for Josh! He has been so supportive of my desire to spend more time at home, to pursue the dream of owning this business, and encouraged me to push outside of my comfort zone. I’m not sure what the next few months hold, but I am sure that we made a great decision putting our marriage first.

I have weekly LuLaRoe sales in my Facebook group (facebook.com/groups/lularoedeborahc) and THIS weekend I have an exciting multi-consultant sale! I’d love to see you there. It’s a great opportunity to try all the clothes on and get your sizes, as well as to see other styles I don’t carry yet. 🙂 Here are the details!
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Managing Expectations

Last night I looked down at the beverage I was holding and just kind of chuckled. Seminary life is a strange, strange time… full of things I never expected and the gender stereotypes have been reversed. For instance, I’m the one that comes home from a long day and wants a beer. I have rarely do dishes, grocery shopping, or clean the bathroom. In fact Josh does a lot of chores for me while I’m at work so that when we’re both home we can spend time together.

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It all feels backwards and it’s been hard for me to let go of all the things I’m supposed to do. I used to think that when I got married maybe I’d have a part time job, but that my main job would be taking care of our house… the floors would never be in dire need of mopping, the dust would not be out of control, the sink would be perpetually emptied of dirty dishes, and the counters ever clean and wiped down. Isn’t that a nice dream?
The reality is that I rise before the sun and I spend 10 1/2 hours out of the house each day… and in that time, there are other humans, with other standards of cleanliness, in my house. Yet, I still inwardly hold myself to that standard of cleanliness and when it’s not met, I feel like I’m not doing enough. WHY IS THAT? Am I comparing myself to other wives I know? Is it a fair comparison? (The answer is no, because it’s not fair to compare.)

I spoke some truth to a friend yesterday, and the truth is that I desperately needed to hear it for myself. The person you’re comparing yourself to isn’t perfect. In fact, they have sins that Jesus needed to die for… just like me.
Ironically, I’m finally learning to recognize the lists I make of things I should be doing just as we’re about to make more transitions out of seminary life, and into both of us working full time. I’m sure the amount of grace we’re giving each other will only need to be increased as Josh won’t have free days to get chores done. Just as I’m becoming aware of the unrealistic lists I’m making for myself, I need to be mindful of the list of “shoulds” I’m making for my husband. I can either be thankful for the things he is able to accomplish, or resent him for the things he can’t. I think the right choice is obvious, but often difficult to make. I pray I’m actively aware of this, and avoid hurting the one I love.

Last night, after a long day of work, a long walk by myself, and time spent in serving others, I didn’t list the things “I should be doing”… I rested and enjoyed that beer (and Grey’s Anatomy). Maybe the counters needed to be wiped, maybe I should have vacuumed our room- instead, I was grateful for the life we have, a husband that serves, and the freedom to say “this is all I can do today.”

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Seasons Change

This has been a crazy season for the Cornelissens. It feels like we keep getting put in impossible situations. It seems impossible to us, because it is… it is impossible without turning to God. I’m learning to recognize my sin in the ways I react to certain things, and I’m learning to turn to Him. The responsibilities that have been placed on me are tiring. I have spent countless nights crying because I am tired of the burdens… but I’m starting to see what God is doing, what He is teaching me, and how He is being glorified.

The past few days, we have been enjoying these sour cream enchiladas. LEGIT. Seriously, add a side of rice, corn, chips and salsa… it felt like we were eating out, but we had that meal at home, for a lot less money. 🙂 I highly recommend this recipe!

Saturday morning, Josh and I had a great morning date. We went to a yard sale at the seminary (I found an awesome lamp and a bread maker), got free donuts from Krispy Kreme (pirate day!), and hit Walmart for some crafting supplies. Other than our morning date, making enchiladas and stuffing our faces, we spent a good amount of time cleaning. I finally finished decorating the kitchen and living room, which means our room is still the only room that needs some serious help. A large part of the afternoon was spent sewing while Josh did some homework. We rounded off the evening spending time all together with the legendary enchiladas and watching The West Wing.

Tonight is FINALLY the Aladdins (and maybe Sweet Frog) date. I’m so excited! We’ll probably go home and watch Once Upon a Time afterwords.

This weekend, Josh has a conference on campus… and I have my normal cleaning and laundry chores, plus my sewing projects. I also need to try out some breakfast recipes… I am REALLY bad at eating breakfast in the morning, so I’m going to try making some breakfast sandwiches, muffins, and breakfast burritos to freeze and warm up in the mornings. Unfortunately I have a feeling I have more goals than I can possibly accomplish this weekend… but I’m going to give it my best shot!

Since it’s starting to feel like Fall, I think my friends and I are going to arrange a Fall crafting evening…. and my Pumpkin Cheesecake has been requested. Seriously who am I to refuse that request?!

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Dear Josh,

I love you so much. I am thankful for the ways we have been encouraged by our church family this week, and thankful for the community we have invested in. I’m thankful for the home we’ve made, the meals we make, and the intentional time together we’re learning to create and protect. I am SUPER stoked about our date tonight… especially since the next few days are going to be so busy and you’re going to be gone.

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Labor Day Weekend 2015 (and other happenings)

Last week, Josh and I had planned was to celebrate his birthday on date night. I felt terrible because I really didn’t do anything for his birthday this year. So… the plan was try a new-to-us Mediterranean restaurant (highly recommended by our friends), Aladdin’s, and get Sweet Frog frozen yogurt for dessert. The reality was that I wasn’t feeling well (no, I am not pregnant… let’s get that out of the way); I was feeling extremely nauseous and I had a horrible headache so we opted for an evening in. We got CFA for dinner and spent the evening watching Once Upon a Time. We had decided to do Aladdin’s and Sweet Frog this week instead, but low and behold I’m like super sick… so that didn’t happen. Instead, we opted for another night in with Moe’s and Once Upon a Time. Then we ended up reading and falling asleep like old people.

MAJOR victory the last two weeks, I organized my closet. Granted, Josh has been pushed way over in the closet (he volunteered!)… but I have all seasons of clothes unpacked, and ready to transition. My sweaters are on a SHELF instead of in a plastic tub in the bottom of my closet (first time for everything), my boots are under the edge of the bed, and my scarves are begging the weather to cool off so they can be used. Suddenly… all my outfits seem like they would be better with a scarf.

I’m trying to decide if I want to sign up for this year’s craft and bake sale at the seminary. If you remember, last year I signed up and was diagnosed with Mono in the midst of prepping/right around the actual sale. I felt like CRAP the actual day of the sale, didn’t sell all my stuff, and came out just breaking even. I have a bit of stuff left over, so anything I sell would be a profit… but my confidence has been a little shot. I thought about trying to get into the baking part of the sale this year and making samples of cheesecake or pumpkin bread, and taking orders… but I’m afraid of getting overwhelmed filling the orders, especially since November/December is usually so busy for us.

Labor Day weekend was full of celebrating Josh’s birthday in Columbia with my family! It was a pretty monumental weekend for my family… they upgraded to smart phones, and they have texting for the first time ever. While they were getting phones, I went shopping! I finally found a pencil skirt and pair of jeans- and they were on SUPER sale. YAY! On Monday, I went shopping again and scored a bunch of fabric on mega sale. If I hadn’t hit sales, it would have cost me almost $65… I think I spent around $25. Other highlights of the weekend: I got to see my BFF and her new house and I got to spend time with my mom.

The weekend was wonderful, but I came home exhausted and have been really sick this week. Hopefully a quiet movie night and a good night of sleep will make me feel better. My goals for the weekend are very few: wash new fabric, start a blanket, watch at least one movie, make enchiladas, eat enchiladas. Oh, and read. I am still in the Hunger Games series, and still loving it!

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The only other thing worth noting is that I decided to decorate for Fall. So, here’s our new mantle (and boxes that need to be unpacked). Our living room has super high ceilings, but such a cozy feel. Y’all, I seriously love how our house is coming together. It’s far from finished, but I am loving it. ESPECIALLY my kitchen… it’s so big that we can all visit while I’m making food. I have so enjoyed cooking for friends, and having many game nights around our table.  (Plus let’s give three cheers for an awesome landlord and the absence of neighbors!)

Dear Josh,
I am really looking forward to our movie night tonight! Leftover pasta and a night on the couch never sounded so nice. I’m excited to be home and do home things this weekend. I’m excited about the sewing projects I get to start, and I’m excited you’re excited about them too.
See you soon!
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Ever-growing To-Do Lists

I took an unintentional blogging break… I guess partially because life is super busy and partially because I don’t have a super strong desire to blog.
This semester, Josh is taking a Biblical Counseling class and I am going to try to read the material so we can talk about it. I have my Bachelors in Psychology, and I believe in a balanced, holistic, integrated approach. I think there are good, beneficial Biblical Counselors, but I don’t believe the Bible-only approach is the most effective. I am super interested to see where Josh’s professor comes down on the scale, and to be able to discuss the course with him.

So… it’s been two weeks. How did my to-do list work out?

-Bake something.
I wanted to make Carrot Cake Cheesecake, but I need to buy some cake pans and I already used up the “Household” budget this month with curtains and such. So instead I made Monster Cookies! Obviously there were no complaints in the house… and I made extra to take to our friend’s “welcome back” party since he was unexpectedly gone for like the entire summer. I also made rolls! I’m not sure what happened, but I had to add a TON of flour. I was so sure they were going to be a flop…. but they were delicious. I also made an Apple Cake this weekend.

-Have someone over for dinner.
In the past two weeks, we have had a lot of people over! We had Joe Tom over one night, and my long-lost Capernwray friend Derek over the next. It was so fun catching up with both of them, and so nice for Josh to finally meet Derek. This past week, we did breakfast for dinner with other friends. THAT WAS SO FUN. We don’t usually have people over for breakfast food… but it was awesome- and a combined effort! We made pancakes and had strawberries and our friends brought sausage and orange juice.

-Unpack a few boxes.
I still have more to do, but I made a ton of progress! The kitchen stuff is unpacked, the pictures are getting hung up, things are finding homes.

-Hang some pictures/brainstorm where pictures will go.
On Monday night, Josh and I decorated the study! I have been telling Josh that “when he has an office” he could hang up the stuff he has from his trips, and his Redskins pictures. So, true to my promise, I helped him hang up stuff from his trips and created the study he’s been wanting. I have my desk in the room as well, so I have my own wall! It’s fun to have our own spaces in the same room… they are so distinct and unique.

-Read for fun.
I have been reading the second Hunger Games book! I am reading a few “serious” books, so it’s nice to have one that I am able to use as an escape and just enjoy.

-Family time, maybe a movie night?
Both weekends since I last blogged we have watched The West Wing and The Office together. Ahh what good shows. 🙂

Update on my purchases, I got my dress and it’s perfect! I feel like it’s a great dress to transition through seasons… it’s classic by itself but will also look so cute with boots, a cardigan and tights moving into Fall. I say, $14 well spent.
The curtains arrived, and finished off our office space! Here’s some pictures of our almost-finished office space below… we’re so excited about it.
I also got my Lilly Pulitzer planner. I’ve already filled it with our life happenings… it is so fun to write things down. I have sticky notes of to-do lists, and all my thoughts go in one place. Plus it’s beautiful. 🙂

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Welcome to the study! This is Josh’s desk…
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This is my desk and craft corner…
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The reading chair (her name is Badonk-adonk Belinda because she is serious HUGE.)

Two Wednesdays ago, Josh and I went to Chipotle for date night and he went to the fabric store with me after. Our friends in growth group are having a baby, so naturally I went to JoAnn fabric. 🙂  I am SO excited about this project. It feels really good to have another project… and I love making baby things. I feel like I get to be part of the joy and excitement, and it’s a way for me to take my thoughts off myself. As I pick out fabric, sew the pieces together, and admire the finished product, I’m praying for my friends as they are entrusted with this precious soul. I’m praying for the baby, that they will grow up to honor and love Jesus with their whole heart. I pray for people to encourage my friends in each season of parenting. I love doing this way more than picking out the fabric (though I picked this fabric out because I feel it has real meaning)… for me it’s a way to love and serve. And, like each child, every blanket I make is unique.

Life is full. I feel like there isn’t enough time to rest, get all the chores done, make all the meals, and be a good friend. I feel like no matter what I do, something is going to suffer. This week, it’s the chores… but they needed to be ignored. I need to make sure I’m making time to do things that will refresh me (like baking a cake or buying fabric or making this place a home and spending time with the Lord), or it won’t matter how much time I’m spending with others… I won’t have anything to give.

This week’s date night is going to be a Josh’s birthday celebration! 🙂 His birthday is actually Friday, and we’re going to celebrate with my family this weekend. Gosh, have I mentioned how happy it makes me that my family LOVES Josh? It’s seriously the best. It makes me so happy to see the people I love loving the person I love most.

Dear Josh,
I am excited our house is starting to come together… I love our study! I’m so excited you finally have your space to do homework. Thanks for all you’ve done to pick up my slack the last few weeks. I’ve been thrown for such a loop and I’m so thankful for you starting crock pot meals, going on walks with me, and doing laundry.
I’m looking forward to celebrating your birthday tomorrow and this weekend!

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French Bread? No, it’s called Lembas Bread

I am bursting-at-the-seams-excited about today…. because MY MOM IS COMING TODAY. We have big plans: the drive in movie theater (Minions and Jurassic World), board games, mango margaritas, and thrifting.

This week has been so so so much fun. My house is packed full of people I love, and I wouldn’t have it any other way. I think this is one of my favorite things about summer. In so many ways, I have been spoiled by summer. We have been able to spend time with so many people, we have enjoyed sleeping later (it takes less time to drive into work without the school traffic), and I have enjoyed extra time in the evenings with Josh (un-distracted by school!).

Wednesday night, Josh and I had our date at Chick-fil-a. We went straight after work, so that we could have a date but also spend time with Andrew and Aaron. We had lots of deep conversation, and processing time- which I desperately needed. I take a lot of time to process things… my thoughts, emotions, etc… I have to write about it, think about it, and talk about it. I’m so thankful that my husband is someone that listens and also helps me think through things.

When we got home we played a few games of 7 Wonders all together. I feel bad (but honestly not TOO bad) because I keep winning… every single game. The thing is that it’s Josh’s favorite game. I mean… y’all. I have beat him every time, even if it’s by one point. Anyway.

Last night was a lot busier than I expected. I got home, started my french bread, started laundry, made bacon, made salsa, prepped meals for the weekend, cut up cantaloupes, cleaned out the kitchen, watched the Office with the guys, and feasted on BLTs. By the time I finished all that… it was 9pm. I got so much done- I saved time from the rest of the weekend, but I was disappointed that it took so long. I SO wanted to hang out with them and kick their butts in board games! We ended up only playing one round of Kingdom Builder– but Josh beat me by a few points. 🙂

One note- I made the same french bread as last time but this time I put the garlic powder and Italian seasoning straight up into the dough. OH MY STARS. Andrew calls it lembas bread (Lord of the Rings) because he had one sandwich and was full. I think he is onto something. The guys had one sandwich each, and no one complained of being hungry. Major score.

I am truly trying to enjoy every minute, because I know tears are waiting on Sunday when my family leaves. 😦

 

 

Dear Josh,

I can’t believe it is already the weekend… this week has absolutely flown by! I have been thinking how much the two of us have grown in the last year. This time last year, it seemed absolutely daunting having someone live with us for a week- especially someone with allergies. Obviously, our living quarters have grown since then and so have my cooking skills, confidence, our budget, and experience. I can’t wait to introduce everyone to our drive in movie theater, to feed them all weekend, and to break out the grill. It’s so easy to focus on all the things we have sacrificed in this season of life, and difficult to focus on the blessings… but this week the blessings have been so evident. I’m grateful.
Can’t wait to come home and start this crazy awesome weekend!
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Fourth of July 2015

I am so happy to report I am feeling better! Now, don’t get me wrong- I’m still exhausted. Life has been full, we have been busy, and that is good… but I’m tired. Our 4th of July was not full of fireworks… but we did have burgers three days in a row. I don’t know if that is something to brag about, but it was good. How did you spend your 4th?

Friday, we went to Ikea. We had good conversation on the way, which I feel like we’ve been missing a little bit lately. Between being sick and being insanely busy, we have just been making life happen. Sometimes it is a challenge to slow down and make sure we’re connecting in meaningful conversation. It’s also difficult to have meaningful conversation when you feel like crap… so I am not pointing fingers, I’m just stating facts. Anyway, we had fun walking around Ikea. Last time we went, we were on a mission to obtain furniture for the new place… this time was a little more relaxed approach. We compared our styles, decorated fictional homes, and made lots of “that would be so nice to have, but we don’t need it so we’re not going to get it” decisions. One thing we DID get was a french press! I figured a cheap one would work for my cold brew? We’ll see.

After Ikea, we headed to the Gilmore’s house. We seriously had such a great weekend with our friends. Driving away, we commented how blessed and encouraged we have always been observing their marriage, and now there’s an added blessing of seeing them as parents. Obviously our weekends look a little different since they’re parents… playing board games isn’t as easy with a 6 month old. 🙂 BUT it’s so GOOD. Friends, thanks for letting us love on your son. I’m glad I taught him how to smack his lips like a fish because it is literally the cutest thing I’ve ever seen. Thanks for showing us that parenthood is hard, but also a joy. Thanks for being a physical picture of how Christ delights in His children… as you delight in yours. Anyway, that’s the important stuff from the visit! I’m so thankful for these pause and play friends.

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Last minute, we arranged for my youngest brother to come stay with us for the week! He just got his first job (WOOT WOOT), so that means he won’t be free to take a week later in the summer. We ended up going through Columbia on the way home to get Andrew, and we have basically had non-stop fun ever since. Obviously, I am still working every day… but going home is so much fun. We’ve been going on walks, playing games, and obviously eating. My mom will be coming up this weekend, and Andrew will go back with her then. It has been so so fun to see my brothers (Andrew and Aaron) and my husband enjoying time together. Naturally, I’m jealous that Josh’s schedule is more flexible and he gets to spend more time with Andrew. However, I’m thankful that Andrew wants to- and gets to- spend so much time with Josh. Today they’re at the Zoo, but tonight we’re spending time together. (I cannot tell you how badly I wanted to call in sick today.)

Like I said, life has been busy… but there are so so many things to be thankful for.
I’m thankful for friends that we’re so close to, we call them family…
I’m thankful for friends that show me how much JOY motherhood holds…
I’m thankful for positive family relationship we get to foster this week…
I’m thankful that we have the resources and space to open up our home….
I’m thankful for a job where I get to learn, grow, make mistakes, and ask questions…
The list goes on. What’s on your list today?

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Dear Josh,

This week has been so fully of blessings. Quality time and encouragement with friends, so much fun with family, and deep conversation together. I’m so thankful that you’re my partner in life. I love that I can share everything with you- the joys like giggling with our godson, the sorrows- as I process losses, the uncertainty- as we look at the future, and our faith- as we challenge each other and work through things. Today, I hope you guys are having SO much fun at the zoo. You three share such a love for God’s creation, and it’s cool to watch you guys enjoy it.
See you for date night! Meanwhile, I’m missing you (and thinking about the 401-K plan we need to sign up for… we’re old!).

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Catching Up

Our date at Chili’s last week was quite nice. I compared their mango margarita to Red Robin’s… and Red Robin wins. We just had FUN being together. We didn’t talk about anything super important, we just enjoyed being out, and we enjoyed each others company.

We needed to go to Walmart I wanted to go to Walmart to get some nail polish (the gel polish I mentioned), so I checked out some Walmart coupons earlier in the day. GUYS. I was flabbergasted to find coupons for our my razor blades, my deodorant, Josh’s deodorant, and Aaron’s body wash. Since these are things we are always going to have to buy, and we are running low on most of them, it made sense to go ahead and get them and we saved $9 in the process. So… that was awesome.

Since that was almost a week ago, some summaries….

We’ve been making…

. A disappointing- but easy- alfredo sauce with shrimp. Definitely not my favorite (the chicken alfredo from a few weeks back was better), but it fed the guys and I heard no complaints. [Find the recipe here.]

. My mom gave me a cake decorating kit for Christmas, but because of my fitness kick I haven’t wanted to make baked goods… because we will consume them in massive quantities and wave good-bye to progress. I used this recipe for Vanilla Cupcakes and Icing this past weekend to celebrate my in-laws 25th wedding anniversary! First, decorating was so fun, and second the cupcakes were just so good.

. Egg casserole, which I need to make again and tweak some. It’s my mom’s recipe, it just took longer to bake than I anticipated.

. Zero progress on my crochet. Well, that’s not true… I made a lot of progress and realized that it looked like a trapezoid so I destroyed it. That was a serious blow… but I will rebuild..

. Plans for Disney. I submitted my vacation request at work (I still can’t believe they are paying me to go on vacation), we have a packing list going, and we’re ready.

. A rather intimidating pile of laundry. Guests= bedding to be washed. A small price to pay!

Been busy…

. Hosting Josh’s family this weekend! We had 8 people in our little house, and it was fun! I was worried about feeding that many people and finding places for them all to sleep… but it went very well!

. At work. Monday morning, I got recognized in our little meeting because a customer remarked to my boss about how helpful I was. It was a huge encouragement to me because I didn’t treat this customer any differently… so it spoke to me that I am doing a good job. I am also seriously on top of our billings– and I’m doing a lot independently which is huge. AIA documents don’t scare me anymore… I even think they are fun.

. Making plans for the next few weeks… between Growth Group, nursery, a blogger get-together, babysitting, providing the GG meal, traveling, packing for Disney… I’m a little overwhelmed but also excited.

. Trying to get rid of ants. Since the torrential downpours this weekend, we have had an ant problem. Thankfully (?) the ants are only going to the trash can. I guess I said “thankfully” because I don’t feel like my house is a dirty dump… trashcans are literally dirty dumps so it makes sense ants would flock there. HOWEVER, I HATE THEM AND WOULD LIKE THEM DEAD. Yeah, so working on that.

. Paying off those student loans. We are making some serious dents, and I know we won’t be able to every month… but right now we are so encouraged by the progress.

Looking forward to…

. Date night tomorrow.

. Date night round 2 on Thursday, my first blogger meet up!

. Seeing my family this weekend.

. Going to Mickey’s house (obviously).

. A house without ants.

. Babysitting, nursery, and all those other things packed into our schedule in the next few weeks. Life is busy and full, and full of serving, and potential exhaustion. But… I’m already exhausted. Praying- daily- that I will be refilled.

 

Dear Josh,
We are preparing for the last leg of the semester, and I’m exhausted. I’m ready for a break! I know that Disney won’t exactly be rest… but it will be FUN. And it will be refreshing to have a break from the daily grind. Plus, it’s an adventure. I love our adventures. 🙂 This rainy weekend was so fun. I loved sharing two of my favorite movies- An Affair to Remember and The Shop Around the Corner- with you, and I’m so glad you enjoyed them. I am also thankful for giftcards and a simple meal plan this week… not cooking this week was the best plan I could have ever made!
I love you so much. See you tonight!

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Kids and Downton Abbey

This weekend was wonderful, exhausting, and different.

Friday night I was planning on babysitting, since Josh had to concentrate intently on finishing his class. So, when Charissa asked if she could plan an overnight escape surprise with Tom I was elated- both to be part of the surprise, and to have something to do. Otherwise, I would have been at home, depressed, because Josh would be home but preoccupied. FRIDAY WAS THE LONGEST DAY EVER. I was so excited that Charissa was so excited that Tom would be so excited when he found out. Yes, lots of excitement.
I raced home, packed an overnight bag and grabbed my dinner, and headed to our friends house. Charissa and I had everything so sneakily planned that Tom had not idea. (He did not believe her when she told him!) Not going to lie, I really liked being “mom” for a night. I watched American Idol for the first time because I’ve never had the time/someone to watch with/ ability… and I cut to Hollywood week because I want to see the people that are actually going to make it. I got to scoop up that sweet little girl in the morning and feed her breakfast, read books, play with blocks… oh my gosh I had so much fun. And, as spending time with Evie tends to do, it made having kids look a lot less scary. We have lots of time yet before we have our own, but it’s always good to be reminded that it’s not all scary.

When I got home, Aaron and I enjoyed a Downton Abbey marathon. And by marathon, I mean we watched Season 1 without a break. WHAT. Oh my gosh, so much fun. Aaron has seen later seasons, but not the first season… I thought I was going to have to punch him because he kept saying things like “I don’t remember seeing THIS character later…” “Oh, so that’s what the story is… the later seasons have legends of this moment.” Not cool.

We decided to do pizza for dinner… and hung out with Josh, who had finished a long, grueling day in the library cranking out a paper.

Sunday, we had nursery duty at church. We were in the baby room, and only had 2 kids… so it was a pretty sweet deal. After church, we polished off those burritos and created a chore chart. That was SO important to me, and I think it’s going to really help. Before, I felt like I was responsible for all the cleaning. That is just not realistic. I am not home long enough to do all the cleaning! So, we sat down together and made a list of daily chores, weekly chores, and chores that are done every other week/monthly. Then we broke out the highlighters and dispersed the chores, and assigned the “weekly” chores to a specific day. Then we did our chores. Hopefully this system takes some stress of me and proves to be effective. I think that knowing what our jobs are will help us hold each other accountable to accomplish the tasks.
For the rest of the day, we hung out together. Josh and I had some really good conversation, which needed to happen, and we finished off the leftovers, I made a strawberry daiquiri, we watched a couple of episodes of 24, and a West Wing because I tend to have REALLY intense dreams if I go to bed right after watching 24. 🙂

Back at work this morning and I think everyone needs to go back to bed… and I mean everyone.

 

Dear Josh,

This weekend was lacking in “us” time. I know you’re working to fix that, and I know it will get better since Ethics is done. I’m glad I could spend time with Evie and Aaron while you were busy, since those were things I wanted to do but didn’t want to miss out on that much time with you if you were available.
THANK YOU FOR MAKING THE CHORE CHART WITH ME. It is seriously such a relief to me that everyone has their jobs, and that I don’t have to worry about it.
Also, I’m excited about having kids… one day.
I can’t wait for this work day to end.

Love, Mrs. Cornelissen