One Step at a Time

Too many nights this week I laid awake… in pain. Last week Josh and I went on two very long walks. I enjoyed being outside, exercising, and not being drenched in sweat. This is my absolute favorite time of year. A few days later, my feet hurt so bad I could barely walk. Each step felt like someone was stabbing me in the foot. After spending WAY too much time on the internet, and scaring myself to death, I realized that there was a glaring obvious reason my feet are in pain: bunions.

I eventually realized that my feet have always had issues, and pretty much always been shaped in a bunion-eque way. On top of that, it is hereditary. Unfortunately my shoes have done me no favors, especially considering I have been wearing one pair of shoes to work every day. Wow. You’d think I would have realized that wasn’t good before I was in crippling pain, but nope. That is how the hunt for comfortable shoes began.

Y’all. It doesn’t make any sense. Shopping is fun until you HAVE to find something very specific. This week has been a pain in the… well, foot. The good news is now I have some shoes with arch support, cushion, and room for my toesies. The other good news is that we had extra money this month, which came exactly when we needed it.

That has been the biggest thing happening in my life this week. It may sound trite or trivial, but it has been a huge deal. I have been in intense pain, frustration, and felt like a money pit. Not saying great things to myself, obviously…

I felt like Superwoman on Saturday, you guys. I did the laundry, made two casseroles for the growth group meal, breakfasts for November, two loaves of bread (Oatmeal), finished a blanket, watched Star Wars episode 2, caught up on my tv shows, vacuumed, fixed a pair of boots, did a lot of shoe shopping, made Josh’s favorite soup, and cleaned our room.

I don’t feel ready for the craft sale at ALL. I know I am a lot more prepared than I feel, but I feel about two months behind. 🙂 This week is quite packed! I have some baking to do tonight, some shower planning, some sewing, and a few short hours. Please pray that I don’t burn out this month, but that I am given the strength, rest, and ability to do everything I need to. And… pray for my self-esteem issues. Being a vendor in a craft sale is SO scary, and I have really struggled with my feet issues and what that means for being able to exercise.

 

Dear Josh,

I am so thankful for the way you meet my needs. Thank you for doing some laundry for me on Friday, to save me some work. Thanks for going shoe shopping with me, because I didn’t want to do it alone. Thanks for giving me some space on Saturday so I could knock out so much of my to-do list! I am so thankful for you, and the ways you take care of me. I love you.

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This Past Weekend

This past weekend, we had a blast with my family.

This past weekend, we went to the drive in movie theater and saw Minions and Jurassic World.

This past weekend, we played a lot of board games.

This past weekend, I soaked up time with my mom- thrifting, cooking, talking, drinking margaritas.

This past weekend, we processed a lot of thoughts, feelings, decisions.

This past weekend, our plans were changed.

This past weekend, we were asked to move out.

Honestly, it doesn’t make any sense. It was a surprise to us, and it was handled very poorly by our landlords. The bottom line, is that they “offered” us the opportunity to terminate our lease and pursue a new housing option that would be more “suitable.”
Bottom line, we were asked to move out.
The only thing we know for sure is that our neighbors have complained about noise (stomping?!), and it has been bothering them since we moved in. Since we received a phone call from our landlord that ended with “It’s not a big deal, don’t worry about it,” which was followed up with an email less than an hour later asking us to leave, we’re done.
When it comes to conflict, we believe a direct approach is best: deal with it, work through it, and move on. Ignoring conflict does not make it go away. We truly wish that our neighbors had come over to tell us that they were being inconvenienced or disturbed, since we had no idea. We wish our landlords had respected us enough to give us an opportunity to address the issue. That all went down on Saturday night.

Obviously, we’re angry. We signed a lease through December. We feel wronged, we feel discriminated against (long story), and we could fight this. The truth is, no matter how much I loved this house, I now hate it. I hate living next to nasty neighbors, and I don’t want to give one more cent to this landlord than I have to.

Over the weekend, we left messages with several people concerning rental properties. On Monday night, we went to see one. On Tuesday morning, we dropped off the application. On Tuesday night, our potential landlord called and said she is checking out our references. As of right now, we’re fairly confident we’re going to get this place… but if not, I know there will be another.

So, that’s where we are. Honestly, this has been the stinkiest summer. I’m ready for a new season.

Snow Day

It snowed ALL night Wednesday night. I woke up, very early, to 8 inches of fluffy snow. I got a text from my boss that the office was closed, and I was instantly wide awake. (WHY is it that if I don’t have to go to work, I’m wired at 6 am but if I DO have to go to work it’s like torture?) I woke Josh up… sorry, honey… and we came up with a very rough snow plan. Josh went downstairs to get some homework done, and I did very important things like surfing Pinterest, and catch up on American Idol. Around 10/10:30, we decided to go play in the snow and made Aaron come with us. (He growled at us like a bear at first, and I thought he was going to eat me… but that’s probably because we were singing “Do you wanna build a snowman?”)

We had SO much fun. We build a “snowman,” who we realized really looked like a goblin. The boys had a snow ball fight/competition, I build a snow woman, who ended up looking like a snow puppy, we went on a short walk, we shook snow off tree branches so it fell on our heads (sounds dumb but it was a ton of fun), we laughed at a couple of stupid guys trying to sled down a (non) hill in a plastic tub, and headed inside.
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wpid-20150226_101411.jpg The snow goblin…

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The snow puppy!
Once inside, I made pancakes, Josh made sausage, and we had a feast. The only way to respond to a feast is relaxation, so we watched a couple of episodes of 24 (by relaxation I mean sitting on the couch… watching 24 isn’t exactly “relaxing”).
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The snowplow caused some heartache at my house. It took the snow from the neighborhood and plowed it right into our driveway. :/  Josh and Aaron spent at LEAST an hour outside shoveling, so we would be able to get out this morning. Well, this morning we found our driveway blocked… again. Thanks a lot, snowplow.
While the guys were shoveling, I made a batch of homemade rolls. My mom taught me, and gave me a recipe, over Thanksgiving… and yesterday was the first time I made them by myself! They turned out so perfect that I made a second batch. At one point, I was making dessert, our dinner (mac and cheese from scratch and asparagus) as well as Shepherds Pie (mashed potatoes and the meat filling). BASICALLY, I was Wonder Woman.
In just a little bit, Josh and I are hitting the road and heading for the Gilmores. I can’t wait to see our dear friends, and love on their sweet baby. Happy weekend!
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I LOVE SNOW.
Dear Josh,
I loved our snow day. I love that we made the most of it- doing things together, and that I was able to do so much cooking! Thanks for spending the day with us, being goofy with me, and for giving me freedom to enjoy the day instead of trying to get some work hours in, by checking email and such. The snow day was SO refreshing for me, even though I was absolutely exhausted by the end!
Can’t wait to see you loving on Joseph. It is always so sweet to see you with kids!
Love, Mrs. Cornelissen

The Snow Wedge

Oh snow… I thought we were friends. I have spent my life praying for and anticipating your arrival. I have cancelled plans for you. I have embraced movies about you (White Christmas, Frozen, etc). Have I not been your biggest fan?

[The correct answer is yes… yes, I have been.]

Then why, WHY, oh snow, have you tried to become a wedge? Not that I’m not happy you’re here… but could you please stop ruining date night with my husband?

Yesterday it snowed all day long. Without fail, and without rest. It was really bad on my way to work… the roads got icy so fast, and I (remember the Southern girl?) slid all over the road, encountered locked brakes for the first time, and almost got in about 3-10 accidents. (Definitely 3, maybe as many as 10.)

As a result of the snow/ice, Growth Group was cut short. We gathered for the meal, and dispersed. So… the Cornelissens enjoyed some wine (ok that was just me) and 24. The guys are seeing why I love Senator Palmer… he is the bomb.

When it snows, I hate being a grown up. I hate that snowflakes make me feel stressed… I think about the roads, the hours I’ll miss, the PTO I don’t have, the lack of my skill in cooking without electricity, and whether or not we have enough blankets in the case of a power outage. Yes, obviously I am struggling with worry, and also struggling with surrendering it.

So, we have looked at the budget, we have brainstormed things to eat, and now I will attempt to surrender my worry, and trust in Josh’s leadership of our family, and God’s provision and peace. If I don’t get 40 hours in at work, that’s ok.

Over the course of the night, we’re expecting somewhere between 4 and 12 inches. Obviously I’m not planning on working tomorrow… lots of opportunities to worry, but I will choose not to. Josh and I have been planning to go see the Gilmores this weekend, and that is still the plan… of course if it’s INSANE we’ll stay home, because we want to be safe… but we are also pretty desperate to see our best friends and meet our godson. 🙂 Life IS an adventure, isn’t it?

 

Dear Josh,

Thank you for coming to rescue me last night, and for talking me through the budget. I am bummed that we still can’t go out for our date, but I’m happy with Chickfila drive thru meal tonight… just as long as I get to spend time with you. 🙂
I have to admit, because I am usually hatin’ on it, I’m glad you have that Explorer. It has been such a blessing not to worry about getting places.
I love you. I’m glad Ethics is over, so you can spend time with me if we get snowed in! 😀

See you tonight for a mini-date.
Love, Mrs. Cornelissen

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

Ch-ch-changes

This weekend was a mixed bag of emotions. It was a weekend fun, challenges, laughter, hurt, tears, and joy. A lot is changing in our house, and with change come a lot of emotions.
This coming Saturday my brother-in-law is moving in with us. I’m excited… I’m scared… I’m sad… and I’m ready; all at once. It is something that Josh and I feel God has called us to do, so I have peace and I’m ready. It is a sacrifice, so I am scared and sad. Aaron is moving in for a purpose, and that is to accomplish some goals and work towards independence. I am so proud of him, and so humbled that we get to help him accomplish these goals. Please pray for us. Pray that Josh and I learn how to make our marriage a priority with another person sharing our house. Pray that Josh and I are full of patience, that we have grace to serve selflessly, and that we are able to communicate well.

Part of this weekend was spent together, in realization that soon we will not have this house to ourselves. We will have to share all the space. Part of it was preparing Aaron’s room, and preparing ourselves for his arrival. The other part of this weekend was the last of our Christmas celebration.

“Josh’s day,” the date day I planned for Josh as part of his Christmas present, happened on Saturday. It was a “choose your own adventure”- like the books Josh enjoyed from his childhood. I found a website that let me write a story and Josh could choose the next part as we went along. Naturally, he did not have total control as I was the writer and forced him to a few places. Josh’s adventure day included breakfast at home (cinnamon rolls and egg burritos), a trip to the used bookstore where he got to pick out some books, and then we went to Duke University! Duke was a good idea; the campus is gorgeous (see some pictures below), but the weather was SO cold. We looked like penguins! After we shuffled around, we headed to lunch in Wake Forest. The original plan was to get Mediterranean food, but he had done that the day before… so we went to Five Guys instead. After that, he had two choices: Home or Surprise. Unsurprisingly, he picked Surprise, and we went to see The Hobbit. Honestly, I wasn’t a huge fan of the Hobbit trilogy and I’m a huge Lord of the Rings movie fan… but I was pleasantly surprised by the last movie.

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In recent life: I’ve been insanely motivated by the Fitbit to walk. I walk in place over my lunch break now, and have started walking at home in the evenings if we watch a tv show. I’ve been drinking more water, I added some exercises into my morning routine, and I’m more conscious about what I’m eating. Those may be small changes, but they’re huge changes for me.

Tonight we’re helping our friends load up their life in Wake Forest and move to Texas. We’re so sad to see them go, but we’re thankful for the blessing they’ve been to us and the way they welcomed us into the group. Love you, Longos!

Tomorrow is my birthday! I’m making pasta, Josh let me get an ice cream cake (that gem of a man drove to like 5 stores until I found the kind I wanted), and I’m looking forward to a quiet evening with a nice dinner, a glass of wine, a movie, and my best friend.

 

Dear Josh,
Life is about to change, and I’m glad you’ll be here through it all. I’m so thankful that we’ve listened to the Lord and responded to him- together. Please forgive me when I’m nasty… when I need alone time I haven’t taken, when I feel like my “rights” are violated, and when I don’t even have a reason.
I’m looking forward to celebrating another year of life– and I am very excited about my ice cream cake. Thanks for getting into the search with me, and setting me free to get one.
I love you. And I am pretty excited that I might have a delayed start at work tomorrow so I get to spend more time with you!
Love, Mrs. Cornelissen

Living Out of Boxes

Friday evening was overwhelming. We packed most of the stuff that was left (which felt like every single thing we owned), had Chick-fil-a for dinner, and shed lots of tears.

Saturday morning started early, with more packing. Josh got the moving truck, our wonderful friends came to help, and we packed up Josh’s car and then started loading the moving truck and my car. Seriously, our friends are the best. Thank you all for coming, bringing us breakfast, cleaning, making small trips to the house for us, and for doing SUCH heavy lifting. We were so blessed and felt so loved by your help.

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So thankful for our free room!

 

Josh and I arranged some furniture after our friends left, and headed to take the Uhaul back around 4… or something like that. It was all a sore, exhausted blur to be honest. We got to the Sheraton downtown around 5:10, checked in and got up to our swanky complimentary room around 5:20. We took speedy showers, got dressed up, and we got to the Christmas party right at 6. We looked NICE too.

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Dressed Up

Thus began a busy evening beginning with cocktail hour and mingling. As the evening unfolded, so did issues. I met the DJ and tried to find the lady in charge. When dinner didn’t start on time, and was 30 minutes late, I started asking the wait staff where she was AND THEY DID NOT KNOW WHO SHE WAS. When I finally found her and asked why dinner had not been served-and found out she decided not to follow our schedule… and had been “watching the crowd” and no one was eating their salads… to which I responded “No one announced it was time to begin! Well… it’s time to begin. Dinner’s already 45 minutes late and I have been looking for you.”  Dinner was served within 10 minutes… and I’m pretty sure I was the first to be served.

The rest of the evening was enjoyable. Josh and I sat with fellow Seminary students, and SO enjoyed their company. Josh and I won 2 giftcards to nice restaurants (free date nights!), and when the “party” started we headed upstairs to our room. We caught “Santa Claus is Coming to Town” (classic)-and Josh said it was weird (poor confused man)- and were sound asleep by 11pm.

Sunday morning, we slept in and went to breakfast before church. We went to a cute little place called Courtney’s. It was perfect. Old couples sitting with the paper and their coffee, young families with children cooing for more food, and couples like us. We both got breakfast platters- eggs, breakfast potatoes, blueberry pancakes for me and waffles for him, bacon for me and sausage for him. It was simply wonderful.

After breakfast we headed to church. After church we went to our new home, and had a meal of sandwiches, chips & salsa. After that, we went to the apartment and worked on cleaning. That is, until I couldn’t stand anymore. See, here’s the thing: I really haven’t done much in 3 months between mono and being sick after that. This weekend knocked me out. So we called it and went back home to rest… which I’m not very good at. I sat down for maybe 30 minutes and then made the bed and started other stuff. After dinner I went back to the apartment to clean and Josh stayed at home to study for his Greek exam. I made MAJOR progress on the apartment- it’s all clean!- and Josh is picking up the rest of our stuff today.

The main thing is that the move is done. And, in about an hour, the semester will be done as well. Then we get to have our 2nd married Christmas, settle into our home, and enjoy some much needed time together.

 

Dear Josh,

I am so blessed to be your wife. Thank you for calming me down during all the freakouts, for being my social butterfly at the Christmas party, for taking me on spontaneous breakfast dates, and digging through boxes to help me find stuff. 🙂 I’m so proud of you for all the work you’ve put in this semester, and for taking care of me so well.

Love, Mrs. Cornelissen

“Sit In” Movie

Friday evening I picked up Josh after work and we went to our new place to look at the dining set! It is gorgeous. I’m so excited to finally have a real dining room table… eating at the coffee table is just not fun anymore. Our new table is solid, and has plenty of character. Check out this beauty:

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We headed home, and I was met by the sweetest date night surprise. I mentioned that we had planned to go to the drive in movie, but with me being sick, and it being so cold outside, we decided it wasn’t the wisest thing to do. I was greeted with admission tickets stuck to the front door, and Josh had created a “Sit In” movie in our living room! It was super cute… he had a reel of vintage commercials going, like they do at the drive in, a concession stand, a menu, and Redbox movies. It was SO fun to do something fun- and also be able to be at home since I felt like crap. We watched Peabody and Sherman (pun CITY- so funny!), and Edge of Tomorrow (which was pretty weird).

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wpid-20141121_181433.jpgSaturday, I was up for a lot of the night. My husband ran out and got me Chickfila for breakfast (our food is seriously lacking since we’ve barely been home this month), and we headed to see his family around 11:30. He and his dad changed the oil, and it was so good to hang out with the family, and talk (though I did sound like a teenage boy. Thankfully today my voice is mostly back.).

Sunday we spent time with the fam jam and headed back home mid-afternoon. It was a good weekend, but I felt so yucky. Hopefully I am better by Thanksgiving!

Today, work is pretty slow– and I’m not complaining. Tonight Josh is going to put in some extra hours at work, I’m making pumpkin cheesecake to take to Columbia, and hopefully getting more sleep than I did last night! There are so many things to be thankful for (despite being sick) including family- both mine, and the family I’ve been blessed with through marriage, a thoughtful husband who finds joy in doing things for me, and all the things we’ve needed for the new home.

20 hours of work left until Thanksgiving!

Dear Josh,
I’m glad I have a blog where I get to brag about all the ways you show me you love me. Thanks for planning an alternate date night on Friday- it was so fun, special, and creative. Thanks for taking care of the car, making sure it’s safe, and saving us money. Thanks for making my sandwiches so I can get a couple more minutes of sleep. You are my biggest encouragement, and I love you so much. I have to get better soon so I can take care of you during all the craziness of the next couple weeks! I love you. Thanks for making life so fun.

Love, Mrs. Cornelissen

Weekend Victories

I am taking a sanity break at work. Today has been insane. I’m dealing with a lot of conflict, which I hate, and they really chewed me out last week. If there’s one thing I can’t stand, it’s being yelled at. It is completely unnecessary. So, I am taking a sanity break to remind myself why I am here. WHY I am working this job. It’s for my family.

(Disclaimer: the people I work with did not chew me out. Vendors and Customers. I love the people I work with and they are SO nice to me.)

This weekend was great, so let’s talk about that instead, ok?

 

Friday

I got home after a crazy day, and wanted to do something exciting. You know what I came up with? Going to Walmart to buy Josh something he needed, to look for a chair cover for my desk chair, and to get RedBox movies. Great plan. 6 RedBoxes, and 2.5 hours later, we got home and ate dinner. (At 8:30.) Maybe we should have eaten and then gone shopping. Maybe we had a completely irrational fight in the middle of Lowes Foods. But we got over it and had a wonderful night with leftover spaghetti and The Muppets 2.

Saturday

We made a huge breakfast of Pancakes (plain, blueberry, and chocolate), hash browns (Josh learned that you shouldn’t put that much oil into a pan on high… I cried because I thought he burned himself), and sausage. Seriously my blueberry pancakes… I’d pay money for them. In the afternoon, Josh went to the library and did homework all afternoon while I planted myself on the couch and watched a mwpid-img_20140811_174649.jpgovie and worked on a project.

A little while ago, I found the most beautiful desk at a garage sale, but didn’t want  to spend the money on it. Josh- sneaky man- bought it for me and surprised me. He put our desks next to each other, because that’s where the desk fit, but I wanted to put it in our bedroom. Usually if Josh is watching football or doing homework, I want to be in a separate room so I can do my own thing. Well… having a desk, “my own space” didn’t really work being in between HIS desk and the TV. So Josh got home and I suggested moving around the furniture. We made it work- and now I have my own space and he has a big bookshelf by his desk. Everyone is happy.

We had a gourmet dinner of frozen pizza… and spent the evening with friends eating apple pie and playing games.

 

Sunday

Sunday morning we ate leftover pancakes and went to church. We’re starting a new series, on evangelism, and it’s really challenging. Maybe I’ll write more on it later.

We had another gourmet dinner… mac and cheese… and spent a couple of hours in our respective “spaces.” Josh watched football- it was a great day of victory… the Redskins AND the Browns won!- and I worked on a craft for my kitchen. There is a super ugly breaker box in our kitchen, and I’ve been wanting to cover it up… and concluded I didn’t have money to spend on such a project. THEN I found a frame in my craft stuff that is exactly the right size… and used my time, thank you football, and craft station, thank you Josh, to create this beauty. I’m pretty happy with it (even though my writing is off-center).wpid-20140914_163912.jpg

Before we left for church, I got that pot roast… well… roasting. I don’t know why I was scared. It was delicious. No one got sick. No one hated it. It was perfect. And we’re eating leftovers tonight. I thought about putting a picture of it here but let’s be honest it doesn’t look as good as it was. So I will refrain.

We had a little bit of an Alias marathon and then folded and put away our laundry (all credit goes to Josh for this one… I voted for staying on the couch, even for sleeping there since I was so tired).

 

Josh,

I love weekends with you. They are so refreshing, and I am so thankful we get to have fun together. Thanks for surprising me with the most awesome desk, and for helping me create a space for me. I love being with you, but I also love doing my crafts and having me time. And thanks for making us put away our clean clothes. Basically, thanks for loving me and all my craziness. I’m glad we’re a team, and that we have so much fun together. Thank you for being all my happy thoughts during this frustrating day.

Love, Mrs. Cornelissen