My blog dress and header has changed! As a newlywed, I am excited to present a whole new theme.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Spiritual Sundays/Brides/Announcement

This week, I am participating in Spritual Sundays and am sharing an eDevotion, plus making a very big announcement!

It's been a long time since I last posted, a really long time. I think the last I posted was in January or February, and here it is May already!

So very, very much has happened during that time.

My sweetie Mike and I have been dating for just over a year now.

It was a long, cold, harsh winter.

But spring finally arrived.

I even got a new (to me) car!

Mike wrote another excellent eDevotion, this one about an interesting subject. He titled it:

My Day as a Bride

"“I saw the Holy City, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride beautifully dressed for her husband.” Revelation 21:2

Recently a big bridal show came to town and I was there. (It’s too hard to explain why.) They had a huge room full of booths where people sold the kinds of things that brides like. You could browse dresses, flowers, jewelry, cakes, crystal. There were photographers, disk jockeys, travel agents, and hotel managers. One lady would take your ordinary folding chairs and wrap them up in satin sheets which seemed like a bad idea to me because I couldn’t see what would keep old folks from sliding out of there. Caterers had toothpicked samples of their finest grub. A harpist would sit you down and pick a little for you.

But more than anything there were lots of excited young girls. They shot from table to table with no signs of waning enthusiasm. They giggled with their friends or their mothers and tasted cakes and tried on crowns. You could tell this was not work for them. There were a few grooms there too. They didn’t look so good. Most of them had the same expressions that I see on a lot of guys in church on Mother’s Day – like they were there against their will.

Like I said, the young ladies were the highlight of the day. They were so excited about becoming brides – and why not? I am too. According to scripture the Church will be the bride of Christ, and I owe it to those girls for reminding me what a big deal that is. It’s something to squeal about.

It seems to me that lent, if you care anything about it, is a time to prepare ourselves to be the bride. Lent can seem pretty gruesome, with all its thorns and ashes and fish dinners. But this is also a time for excitement. It’s a time to get ready for the Biggest Day of Your Life – and then to live happily ever after."

Maybe some of you have already guessed the reason why he was at a bridal show. In late February, Mike asked me to be his wife!!!

His church was very excited to learn that he was going to have a wife. Rumor got out ahead of time, so our big announcement came as no surprise. They were ready for us, with signs declaring their congratulations!

This is as close as we are going to get to an official engagement portrait.

Mike was pretty happy when I told him he didn't have to buy me a ring, as it has been my heart's desire to wear the ring that belonged to my grandmother. She became a bride in 1920, I believe!

The very first thing I did was buy a wedding dress! I was hoping for a proposal, so had already been searching eBay for a dress. I was very lucky and found one that I loved for only $111, and it was brand new with tags!

I found lovely earrings on sale for $10. The aqua and lime green are going to be my colors.

I'm making my own bouquets. Mine will be somewhat similar to the one pictured. I love hydrangeas and roses! Hydrangeas grew in my grandmother's garden.

This is the style of dress my bridesmaids and I selected, except it will be a lighter blue called "pool."

My future step-daughter Corinne will be a bridesmaid, and my daughter Tara is going to be my matron-of-honor.

A young woman that I knew from church since she was a little girl is starting a cake business and offered to do the cake at cost! This is a picture that she is using for inspiration.

Hopefully, I will be posting more pictures as I prepare for my wedding day, which is rapidly approaching: June 18, 2011! And if any of you reading this are pastor's wives, I would really love some input on what I can expect in that role. In three weeks, I'll be a preacher's wife!

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Celebrating November and December

Well it has been almost two months since I last posted. Oops! I really think that I will be doing well if I manage to post once or twice a month. I have a very full life these days, and time spent with my honey and in going to church, along with working some overtime and spending time with my kids, has really kept me busy.

Oh! My boyfriend, Pastor Mike, has just begun his own blog Soul Nachos. Please visit him. He will be doing eDevotions and sometimes sermon snippets. He is just getting started and only has one post so far, but I love his little nuggets of wisdom. He has a very folksy, relatable way of getting his story across that I just love. It's one of the things that attracted me to him before we actually met in person. If you do visit, please leave a comment and let him know I sent you. Pretty please!

The fall season began with me finally getting around to decorating my porch for autumn. Since money is especially tight right now, I used only things that I already had.

We had a fairly warm autumn, so I was still able to sit out on my porch occasionally.

Next thing you know, it was Thanksgiving. I worked third shift the night before and went straight to work cleaning house and preparing for dinner. My table setting was not too different from last years, but in a different home.

This year the centerpiece was my wreath from outside, and a cornucopia shaped planter.

Family started to arrive!

My sweetie Mike carved the turkey.

My son Jared's girlfriend Kylie, of the pretty gray-blue eyes, was able to join us and took her place beside him at the table. My older son Sean and my brother Dave were there too.

Here are all three of my children and my little brother.

On the other side of the table were my brother Dave again, daughter Tara, and sweetie Mike. Not sure why my son-in-law Mike S. is missing from that empty chair. He was there, I swear!

Even my dummy dog Jake got in on the action, scavenging for goodies underneath the table. He didn't have to go far. I found out a couple years ago that the kids were slipping him scraps!

Soon enough, it was time to decorate the porch for Christmas! Again, I used things that I already had around the house. My poor Santa was so much worse the wear since he was always being blown over at the last couple places we lived. I had to use Gorilla Glue to put him back together. Almost good as new!

I loved how my lit tree looked through the window. The metal blinds inside the window panes made it look like lights were streaming down.

My honey, Pastor Mike, decided to do an advent series on The Christmas Carol and donned Ebenezer Scrooge-type jammies for a couple Sundays. Then he dressed as the Ghost of Christmas Future, complete with a Scrooge's headstone that he had crafted.

All three of my children and my son-in-law were here Christmas morning. I love that they are all adults now. They didn't even try to wake me until 10 in the morning. Later in the day, my brother Dave and my sweetie Mike joined us all for dinner.

I had it all set for Christmas with special plates, placemats and candles.

Here is the centerpiece that I found at Goodwill last year for only $3. I added a trio of candles that I purchased at a deep discount during post-season sales last year.

Yummy food! Candied yams, green bean casserole, and ham were among the goodies served.

Everyone looked ready to eat, including my brother Dave,my son Jared, and my sweetheart Mike.

My daughter Tara and her hubby Mike S. took their places at the table.

Dinner was good! Wow, I really love that empty box decoration in the background filled with stuff that was thrown in hastily after Christmas morning.

I had a home party in November, and got this cool beverage server. I put it in the freezer before so that it would keep the apple cider cold.

Mike's favorite gift EVER was this camera I bought him for Christmas! I'm so glad he liked it.

As you can see, he had a lot of fun with it.

So no pics of me? Okay, here is one from November on a day that Mike was visiting. He did a pretty good job as my photographer!

Hope that all of you had a great holiday season too, and a very Merry Christmas! I'll be visiting when I can.