Easter 2015

Our visit with Josh’s family was wonderful. I was able to get off work early on Friday, so we arrived in time for dinner! Josh’s grandparents took us out for Mexican food (the way to our hearts), and we were so encouraged by the conversation and time we were able to spend with them. Saturday morning, Josh and I had a breakfast date at Cracker Barrel (the nearest one to our house is about 50 minutes away), played Ticket to Ride, and hung out with family. We celebrated birthdays (my father in law’s and Aaron’s) and enjoyed the best lasagna to ever grace this earth. Seriously, my mother in law nails it every time. (I spent most of my life thinking I didn’t like lasagna UNTIL I had hers!!!)

I must say, my March Madness bracket was not right (I had Kentucky vs Duke, with Kentucky winning) and I’m so happy about it. GO DUKE! While most of the family watched basketball, I learned how to crochet and it is so much fun. Now I keep it at work and I’m practicing when things are super dead (like today) and over my lunch breaks. Maybe it will help me stay occupied on the long drive to Florida! Not only has Aunt Katie now blessed me with a sewing machine and crochet lessons, but may have gotten me addicted to Sally Hanson Miracle Gel nail polish. (But seriously it looks like I just did my nails this morning, and I did them on Sunday… this is unheard of.)

This is the dress I was so excited about finding!


I love visiting friends and family, and I love taking trips… but honestly, being away for a weekend always throws me a little. The weekends are when I breathe, get some things done around the house, and prepare for a new week. Skip the breathing, getting anything done, and preparing… and it leaves me kind of exhausted. Add in a sweet husband who snores like a freight train because of allergy congestion, and the result is a night of 4.5 hours of very interrupted sleep, and a very emotional day to follow. (That was Tuesday). Last night I found myself extra exhausted, and my husband graciously offered to sleep on the couch so I could rest. (The result was 8 hours and 10 minutes of blissfully uninterrupted sleep. Thank you, honey.)

The Disney count is ON. [31 days til Mickey’s House.] The shopping list has been made, the car trip food planned, and the fast passes reserved. Tonight we’re doing some shopping for things on the list- like shorts for me, and pricing things like sunscreen so we can budget for them next month. Tonight is also date night so we are hitting Red Robin.


Dear Josh,

I am thankful that we have such loving, caring family on both sides (especially when they love us through leftovers– I had potato casserole and ham for lunch). I’m also thankful that you take such good care of me…. which in this specific case meant sleeping on the couch so I could get some quality rest.
Can’t wait for our date tonight! It has been a long past couple of days, and I’m ready for some time with my honey.


Busy and Rewarding.

Friday night Josh and I had dinner, hung out, and went on a Christmas light adventure. He planned out a route, based on tips from friends who have done this, and we found some real gems. Probably my favorite thing we saw was an inflated concrete roller truck, with a reindeer driving… on the roller, which actually rolled, was a picture of a grandma. I died laughing. Grandma got run over by a reindeer.  Driving around with Frank Sinatra’s Christmas album, a peppermint milkshake from Chick-fil-a and my husband was the perfect end to a busy work week, and a weekend of Christmas.

Saturday morning, Josh and I got up and went downstairs to turn on our little Christmas tree lights and the lights over the mantle. I made coffee, and we dove into our gifts. This year we decided to do categories of gifts; want, need, making a meal for each other, and planning a day together. Saturday morning we opened the “want” and “need” gifts. For my “need” gifts, Josh gave me a 4 qt crock pot (the one I have spews water and leaks all over the counter…) and wine bottle stoppers that also allow you to pour without taking the stoppers out. For my “want” I got pj pants, a tshirt (LION KING) and Despicable Me 2 (and a pack of gum but I really don’t feel like that counts because I put it on the grocery list).

I gave Josh a sophisticated tie as a “need” (if you saw his tie collection you would understand), and made a “Disney Preparation Package.” If you didn’t know, Disney owns Star Wars now… and we’re going to Disney World in May, which means we’re going to be there for Star Wars day. My husband is SO excited. So I made him a package that allows him to immerse himself in nerdy excitement, including a lightsaber toothbrush, a Star Wars tshirt and a countdown calendar AND a Harry Potter tshirt for our day at Universal.

After Christmas presents we made a big breakfast including roasted parmesan potatoes, sausage, eggs and cinnamon rolls. Then I made Josh watch Babes in Toyland with me. I hadn’t seen it since I was little, and frankly it was a little strange but I still like it. I don’t think Josh was sold on it. Also, on Friday night I made Josh watch Mr. Willoby’s Christmas Tree (google it) which involves a very young Robert Downey Jr. (aka IRON MAN) dancing and singing in a nightgown about the perfect Christmas tree.

We had planned to watch Christmas movies all afternoon… but the disorder of the house has been driving me insane so we made some progress on unpacking instead. Now, our room is almost completely set up- including our closet, my books are put away, all guest towels and sheets are clean, laundry is done and put away, we made some progress on the kitchen, and the extra bedrooom looks more like a bedroom than a dumping ground. We worked HARD. Since we had a big and late breakfast, we didn’t have lunch. And, since I was working so hard on the house, we didn’t end up making soup as I had planned. Around 4:30 Josh reminded me he was a human, and had hunger… and we decided to get Moes instead of making dinner. So we had burritos, queso, and enjoyed our comfy couch and The West Wing.

Sunday was our one-anniversary. I could talk about this year, the struggles, the joys, the lessons learned, but I think I’ve shared a lot of them already. It’s been a hard year… it’s been a year of growth… it’s been a year of thankfulness for each other.
It’s crazy to think that a whole year ago it was 80 degrees outside on the first day of winter… and I was meeting Josh at Riverfront park for wedding photos and our first kiss. Our wedding day was truly perfect, and so were the days following (except for the fact that Charleston was ridiculously hot and we had packed the wrong clothes, assuming it was going to feel like winter). One year ago, alarm clocks went off every couple of minutes until we got to the hotel. And, when we got to our super fancy hotel (a gift and surprise from Josh’s uncle), we got stuffed crust meat lovers pizza which we ate in bed and watched The Italian Job. I wouldn’t change a single thing.

This year, we learned about anniversary expectations and I think we had a productive conversation. We agreed to celebrate our anniversary next weekend, but I said I didn’t want our actual anniversary ignored, which was interpreted as “don’t forget to say happy anniversary”… I meant at least DO SOMETHING to acknowledge it. Yeah. We’ve both learned something- communicating exactly what I want, and learning to at least give a card or flowers… not just say “happy anniversary.” BUT-sign of growth- I was able to articulate my hurt without being hurtful, and Josh was not defensive. This is actually huge, and something we’ve been working on for a while. Next weekend we’re going to be super sappy and reminisce on the last year… but this past weekend we did a lot of unpacking.

After church on Sunday we went shopping for some house things, and had soup and grilled cheese for lunch. We enjoyed more of The West Wing, baked a cake, and tried to make some more progress on the kitchen. At the store, I bought a night guard… it just had to happen. Apparently I grind my teeth hard core, and man I’ve been feeling it in my jaw… so on our anniversary I bought a night guard. Haha we sure know how to celebrate.

We enjoyed an evening at home of one of our pastors with the other growth group leaders/ assistant growth group leaders he’s over. It was such a good time of fellowship, encouragement, and reflection on the past year. They knew it was our one year anniversary, and asked us to describe the past year of marriage in one word each. Josh said “busy” and I said “rewarding.” I think they’re both true. This year has been insanely busy, and rewarding in what it’s taught us.

This week, I am working for 13 hrs. Then it’s all about Christmas and our anniversary. Virginia Beach on Tuesday/Wednesday, Hertford on Wednesday/Thursday/Friday, and the Outer Banks on Friday/Saturday/Sunday. The library at SEBTS is closed this week, so Josh is working on unpacking at home, and is blessing me by doing the laundry.


Dear Josh,
HAPPY ONE YEAR ANNIVERSARY. Despite the struggles and challenges we’ve faced, this year has been FUN. I love how completely ridiculous we are. I love laughing until we feel like we’re going to die, and I love the jokes that only we get. You’re my best friend, and I am so blessed to be your wife. Thank you for serving me, putting me first, and never leaving me. Hopefully this year we won’t face unemployment, destructive deer, mono, or taking two ancient languages at the same time (seriously what were we thinking?!)… but if we do, we know we can handle it together.

I’m so excited to celebrate Christmas with your family, and then our anniversary at the beach.
Also, I can’t wait to come home to you tonight. Thanks for all you’re doing at home today!!

Love, Mrs. Cornelissen

Timesheets and Wisconsin

It has been a very long day, and blogging was not an option this morning. My boss is on vacation this week, and I have assumed some of his responsibilities… including time-sheets. Today, time-sheets have been the bane of my existence. It looked so easy when he explained how to do them, but then my program didn’t act like his did… the computer decided to call all office time “personal,” therefore not paying us… and all I have is office time so when I pulled my time sheet and it said “0” hours I almost screamed. THEN I realized what had happened, after I had approved everyone’s time-sheets, which had locked them so I couldn’t edit them. (That was a very short sentence that summarized about 3 hours of confusion, agony, and manual adding of each employee’s time.)

Friday. We were on the road by 6pm. The last time we went to see Josh’s family, we got hit by a deer. No, we did not hit the deer. The deer literally rammed the side of the car. Yes, the car was totaled. Yes, insurance covered half of our “new” car. Yes, I love my new car. Anyway…

On the way to see them, we saw at least two deer. One was just standing in the middle of the road. Josh honked, and after our hearts started beating again, he said at least it acted like a normal deer and ran away from us. 🙂
We got to hang out with Josh’s family, and slept very soundly.

Saturday. After a big breakfast, we went up to Virginia Beach, spent some time at Grandma and Grandpa’s house, and went to the parents weekend events at Regent (with an actual Regent parent, my mother in law). That included bounce houses, face painting, and animals! I got to hang out with Lucy, she’s 1 and 1/2 and sooo cute. She loved the bunnies, scared the goat, and wanted everyone’s food. I know she probably likes me because I look kind of like her mom, but I’ll take it. She wanted to be held a lot, and I loved it. After the Regent festivities, we had lunch at Chick-fil-a.
In the evening we had a birthday celebration for Grace (12) and Kaity (21)! Birthday Celebrations= mom’s lasagna, cake and ice cream, and presents.
Late Saturday night, Josh’s parents and sister decided to go up to Wisconsin to see Josh’s grandpa, who is in the hospital and not doing well. Lots could be said, but it boils down to this: everyone is worried about him. This weekend was filled with indecision, pros and cons, and lots of opinions. In the end, they decided to go, and I think that’s what they needed to do.

Sunday. The night was especially short, as we went to bed late and got up early. Josh and I got our stuff packed up so we could help everyone else get packed and ready to go. Josh and I ran errands- bank, Walmart, loaded vehicles, and went back to Virginia Beach. Around 4:30, mom, dad and Kaity headed to Wisconsin, and Josh and I headed to Wake Forest.

Yes, this weekend was hard, but I’m glad it’s the weekend Josh and I had planned to spend with his family. Sometimes it’s hard being a couple of hours away from family, because we want to be there for them. This weekend we were. I’m so glad I got to play with Lucy, run errands, give rides, and help people process and make decisions. We’re in constant prayer for the family in Wisconsin.

Monday. As I mentioned, today has been a challenge. My “to-do” list has been insanely long, and I barely put a dent in it today. No, I haven’t been bored, but I sure am tired. Also, it’s been a WEIRD day. Just a few minutes ago, someone came in a told me that they locked their keys in their car and wanted to use my phone because his cell phone died. Of course I did, and then also told him not to park in our parking lot again because he would be towed. Anyway the guys friend couldn’t help, so he called the police.
At least I got my file folders, highlighters, sticky notes, etc today! I ordered a box of office supplies last Thursday, and on Friday I received 15 20-oz containers of sugar instead. Whooops. Now we have a ton of sugar AND office supplies. (And I have a bunch of moving boxes!)


Dear Josh,

I’m so proud to be your wife. Even though it was a hard weekend, it was such a blessing to me to see you loving on your family this weekend and serve them alongside you, whether that meant making Lucy laugh, working on the car with your dad, or buying your mom’s favorite candy. I am proud of you for bringing up the hard conversations and grateful that you value my opinion so highly.
Tough situations always reveal character, and we’ve had a lot of tough situations lately. I’m blessed to have a husband with such high character- I’m proud of you and glad I stalked you after class until you asked me out. 😀

See you tonight for some of that leftover lasagna! It’s been a LONG day without you!!!!
Love, Mrs. Cornelissen

Virginia (is for lovers)

Happy Monday! That was a little enthusiastic for this sleepy day. Good morning. Lest you think I am bright-eyed and bushy-tailed today, I think my eyes are going to be squinty all day, and I chose my outfit to permit wearing leggings, for optimum comfort. It’s not even cold outside. I just wanted the comfort.


Let’s recap. Friday I turned off my computer, wrote myself a note for Monday morning, and closed the door on work. (When I leave for the weekend, I LEAVE. That’s why I have to write myself notes. If I didn’t, I wouldn’t remember where I left off.) I went home and was delightfully surprised that my husband had done most of the things I had on my “before we leave” list, including changing the sheets on the bed, and was able to quickly get the last of my things together. I’ve been listening to old cds on my morning commutes because I feel happier starting my day singing to Jesus with Rebecca St. James than I do flipping around the radio trying to avoid Katy Perry and Iggy Azalea. So Josh and I thought it would be fun to visit some classics and gathered my WOW! cds together for the road trip.

We arrived at Grandma & Grandpa Sims house and it bustling with noise and excitement. (It was 9:30 and I was ready for bed, haha!) Grandma & Grandpa were at a football game, so we stayed up to see them (since they were leaving in the middle of the night to catch a flight to Canada), and then I went to bed. Sweet slumber.


Saturday we got to hang out with Josh’s Aunt, Uncle and cousins in the morning.  We were spoiled by my mother-in-law cooking for us, played games -including 7 Wonders, which Josh got for Christmas, and ended the day going to Kaity’s play, Pride and Prejudice. Kaity played Charlotte Lucas wonderfully, and I spent much of the play explaining the plot to Josh. The 8 hour movie is in our future. (The Keira Knightly version butchered one of my favorite love stories!!!!)


Sunday, I slept in so late that the family thought I had either died or snuck out of the house (I slept until 9:45, but that is insane for me). I needed that rest. We were spoiled with another big breakfast, and played MORE games! 🙂 Josh and I finished our laundry and left around 4:30, and enjoyed more of our walk through the Christian hits of the early 2000’s.


This morning, my alarm went off and it felt like the middle of the night. We stumbled to get ready for our walk, and it was raining. Like troopers, we walked anyway. A good life decision, but a really hard thing to make yourself do at 6:15 in the morning after a weekend away. Saying that I’m dragging today is a vast understatement.


Tonight we’re making our default “we don’t know what to make” meal (for the 3 evenings we’ll be at home this week), and trying to rest up for another weekend away. And, like we always do during the last week of the month, we’ll be going over the budget. Hopefully I’ll have some money to do some crafting for the upcoming sale!


Other life happenings:

-There are some impending changes at work that I am choosing to pray about instead of stress about.

-It has been 5 years since I went to Capernwray. What?! The Facebook group has been a buzz this weekend, with people posting “where are you now?” updates. So cool.

-I’m trying to strike a balance between productivity and rest at home. Yesterday I told Josh, “I don’t know why I’m so tired, all I do is work!” How ridiculous does that sound? Yes, I work and that doesn’t stop when I get home. But I need to remind myself that Josh didn’t marry some perfect version of me, he married the real life human Deborah who can’t do it all.

-Josh has fall break next week which is super weird. I’m a grown up. The closest I get is paid holidays.

-Currently, all our clothes are clean. Our towels are clean. Our bedding is clean. That just makes me happy.


Dear Josh,

Thanks for serving me by helping me on Friday. It was SO nice that I didn’t have to worry about making the bed, or cleaning the coffee pot, or driving to Virginia. I’m so glad we got to talk on the way, and to have fun listening to the tunes of our childhoods. Also, thanks for losing so gracefully in every game of 7 Wonders. That was pretty fun.

I’m glad I don’t have to do things alone. I don’t have to pack alone, go on early morning exercise walks alone, or make meals alone. (PS don’t forget to stick dinner in the crock pot!)

Praying you do well on your Matthew exam today, and I’m looking forward to some snuggles tonight. I love you. Mondays always seem SO long and horrendous after weekends with you.

Love, Mrs. Cornelissen

Fall Break- Sunday

We didn’t go to church this morning. Instead, we took pictures with your family and then hung out at their house and played games and ate a big breakfast. Your dad didn’t know what to refer to me as. It was pretty hilarious.

In the afternoon (after playing Ticket to Ride), you and I went shopping with your parents. You found so many pairs of shoes that you wanted! It was a huge blessing! And your mom & dad bought me a set of purple silverware (which I really needed) and a floral travel mug. Then they took us to get Frozen Yogurt… and your mom said “thank you for loving our son” and got teared up. We talked about our wedding ideas with them, and it was SO happy and SO… easy.
Your parents told me they loved me as I said goodbye, and it really left me feeling so blessed and so overwhelmed. I love your family. And they are such an answer to my prayers.

Look how cute you guys are!!

On the ride home, we talked the entire time. We got home really late (like 12:30 or something), but ahh what quality conversation we had! We started going through the book “101 questions to ask before you get engaged.” Super awesome.

Fall Break- Saturday

Your parents were in favor of our plan. That makes my heart burst with excitement. Today you spent the day with your grandparents and Chris & Katie at an ODU game [y’all lost and it was sad. You returned like a bunch of kids that just got their bikes stolen.] I spent the day with your mom, Kaity, Sophie, Grace and Bella (and Aaron but he doesn’t talk to me). We went to Chick-fil-a for lunch, and spent the afternoon talking and cooking.
I am always blown away by the way your family recieves me. They are soo loving to me, it overwhelmes me and usually makes me cry. I spent a long time at the dinner table with your mom and dad talking about my future plans– NC State– and they listened so carefully. I felt SO loved and cared about.
It is such a blessing to me that your family loves and accepts me. And that they are excited for us.

Fall Break- Friday

Today we talked about naming our future kids while we walked on the boardwalk at Virginia Beach. We also took a kissy picture. (Got to admit, we are adorable…)

I am so excited about our future together, and stoked to raise Autumn and Caleb with you. You are going to be SUCH an awesome dad.

We had lunch with your friends– Catherine & Rachel– and spent the day playing games and hanging out with your family. Your grandpa wants to know our future plans.
In the evening, I babysat Grace & Bella. We had so much fun!! We played horses for HOURS. Seriously. Anyway, I babysat the girls so you could go out to dinner with your parents and tell them we’re planning TO GET MARRIED! I prayed for that conversation non-stop.