Thursday, December 31, 2009

Being a dog Aunt will have to do

I have talked several times here about how I would like to have a dog, see my collected works for the background story.  However, lately I have been thinking that for the time being "borrowing" a dog is a good option.  I love coming home to visit my childhood dog (and maybe my parents too) whenever I can.  Also, my sister (and MOH) got a beagle puppy a few months ago.  Even though he is a crazy little puppy with an extreme amount of enthusiasm for life (aka- running around like a psycho for long amounts of time) I think being his Aunt (favorite!) is great.  He makes me laugh hysterically and is a real lover when he's not being insane.  On Tuesday my sister and I took a drive to scout out some houses for Doug and I to look at (we're moving!) and we took Copper with us.  The whole way home he slept in my lap with his head nestled on my arm, while I was driving of course. :)  My heart majorly melted.

Here are some pictures I took of him while working on a Christmas project.  Hi, my name is Copper and look what a cutie I am.

I don't really understand why you are trying to make me sit still and nice with this stupid hat on, but since you're my favorite Aunt I will try to go with it.

You can only ask so much though woman, because I would much rather eat this hat than wear it.  This is the one that I framed for my sister because I think it is the most representative of the true Copper spirit.

I fully intend to make him my running partner when the weather isn't so yucky and when we have moved (!) closer to my family.  And because he is way too cool and important to be left out, here is a nice picture of the first love of my life, Rascals.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

I call this Mr. Ace's "I'm going to kill you in your sleep for ruining my life" look.  If a glare could kill, I would definitely be dead as many times as I have seen it.

Merry Christmas from everyone in our house except the aforementioned angry feline!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

funny pictures of dogs with captions
see more dog and puppy pictures

 This just made me smile after another very long day.  It reminds me very much of seeing my niece and nephew, the greyhounds, licking every last drop from the bottom of my sister or brother-in-law's ice cream cup.

A couple wedding developments this week to come this weekend when I actually have time to write!

Monday, December 7, 2009

There once was a girl

And she met a boy. And the boy was great and they liked each other very much.

But the boy had a cat. And the cat, he didn't much like the girl.And so he tried to hide from his feelings and from the growing affection between the boy and the girl.And he tried to use male bonding to drive the girl out.And he tried to have a heart to heart (or head to head) with the boy about the girl.But the boy's mind could not be changed and so they got engaged and then the next year the girl brought her things to the house of the boy and his cat. And the cat expressed his displeasure.But the girl did not leave. So, the cat laid in her freshly laundered towels.And he again expressed his displeasure. He said, "Why are you here and ruining my life?"But the girl did not leave. And eventually the boy and the girl decided that it was time to once again bring balance to the house. And so, in their most spontaneous and least thought about decision of the year, they adopted a girl kitten.
And she was happy and cuddly and wonderful.And they named her Halo after the boy's favorite video game at the time. And she kept the girl company through long nights of Xbox.And she served as a guard of the girl from the cat, albeit sometimes a sleepy one.And they all lived happily ever after. Except the cat who is suspected to be incapable of happiness. The end.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

A quick trip to Victoria's and now it is just left to deciding between...

matching our wedding colors
or something blue.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas

Well, no, I guess it really isn't here in the Midwest, but inside our house it is since we put up the tree on Monday. Yes, I know that today is Thanksgiving and I have a post about what I am thankful for in the works too, don't worry. Just a bit out of order. I love Christmas and I don't care for turkey, so deal with it. :)

Our tree is a hodgepodge of decorations from both before and since we have been together. It's definitely a random assortment of items, but it works. Here are some of my favorites:

This is an ornament with a picture of our first cat and from our first Christmas together. We actually got a kitten in late August, who I thought I had written about but I guess not. So now I need to work on a blog post about her in addition to getting her an ornament for the tree.This is a new ornament for this year and was a gift from my mom. Nothing can put me in the Christmas mood faster than watching the claymation Rudolph. Of course, this can also make me a tad homesick, as it reminds me of the long hours spent watching Christmas movie after Christmas movie with my mom pretty much every December that I can remember.
I couldn't resist purchasing this adorable cow angel ornament that I found at Target when Doug and I stopped by to pick up ornament hangers. I am considering it a tribute to my Aunt Sharon who married a dairy farmer.
Doug made a set of two Ninja Turtles when he was a kid and they have always found a place on our tree as a reminder of how one of the first things we bonded over when we met was our mutual admiration for the Turtles when we were younger. What can I say? - Barbie just didn't interest me. We also bonded over going to and disliking the same orthodontist but that hasn't warranted an ornament.
This ornament was a gift from Doug's mom from the Christmas we got engaged.
This sparkly pear is from the wedding of my sister Audra and brother-in-law Derrick. I'm not actually sure if it is in fact an ornament but I love sparkly things.
I majorly heart snowmen. When we move (hopefully before next Christmas) and have more room I fully intend to have two trees. One will be our hodgepodge tree. The other I hope to decorate in snowmen, silver garland and ribbon, and white lights. These are two of my snowmen from past years...

... and this is a new snowman for this year, also a gift from my mom.
And to top it off, our version of an angel- the angel bear! This is actually a small Boyds bear that was a gift from my mom's good friend forever ago. I have always loved it and when we were putting up the tree together for the first time and I discovered that Doug had no tree topper, I knew just the perfect one!
Anyone else have such a motley crew of ornaments on their tree?

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Like having a crystal ball

I no longer have to wonder all the time what my wedding will look like because today I saw it. Megan Thiele just happened to post a gorgeous wedding today that occurred at the chapel where Doug and I will get married almost exactly six months from today.I had been thinking about something for these doors for a while but now I have an official mental note to figure something out.

Spectacular light.If I were to have a must take photo list, this one with the ridiculous landscaping would top it.If we're making a list add one of these shots with the stairs too please.
And, of course, some on Lebanon's cute main street.
There's a ton more gorgeousness to be found over on Megan's blog so hop over there to enjoy and leave her some love! Oh, and ask her where the reception was because I have a sneaking suspicion it might be the same as our too.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

A Good Cry

It seems to me that lately the only thing that seems to be coming from the dwindling of days between now and wedding day (the official count is 189, by the way) is an increased frequency of wedding related drama and therefore, for me at least, a lot more crying. I can't even remember the last week that went by without me breaking down over something. So far I have chosen not to address these things here for fear of this blog being discovered by those causing the crying. For now I think I will keep it that way but let's just say there is a group of people who seem to find anything and everything we decide for the wedding to be wrong and bad. And they have to tell us. This explanatory/defensive post, for example stemmed from one of our encounters with these people. If you know me in real life, I would imagine that you have already heard one, two, or all of these stories but another one happened today so feel free to ask.

So obviously none of those are good cry's and the topic of this post is actually a good cry from a few weeks ago. I arrived home on a Friday afternoon (not usually a crying event) and had received a package in the mail (also, not a crying event). I opened it to find the bouquet charms I had ordered from Etsy seller DesignsbyTami. And I cried, but this was one really good wedding related cry. I sat there by my front door and cried and just remembered and thanked God for the blessing that both of my grandpas were to me and my families.I initially ordered these to adorn my bouquet, and they will. However, I know these will find a more permanent place in my life post-wedding. I miss and think of my grandpas often and these charms will be such a nice way to carry them with me always, not just on my wedding day.

"I thank my God upon every remembrance of you." Philippians 1:3

Thursday, November 12, 2009

I have a problem

Well, I have several actually, but most I don't think I can safely post about here and/or I can do nothing about. I may very well throw caution to the wind sometime this weekend, out of sheer exasperation with my drama filled life, so check back for a more interesting post soon.

So anyway...

I've been finding myself checking my e-mail as well as a certain blog or two several times an hour. I'm waiting (somewhat) patiently for several important e-mails and an even more anticipated blog post of our engagement pictures. This would probably be extremely detracting from my getting work done if I actually had enough work to fill my time. Unfortunately though I don't have enough to do and this is probably only adding to my problem!

Suggestions, please, because this girl is going crazy.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

This has got to be a first

I have a wedding venue that not only won't respond to numerous phone messages, but also has ignored a tweet from my fab planner! Now, I'm just not sure this is something I can support.

In other news, I need some feedback here. If our ceremony site's rules state : "The following activities are not allowed on University property: ..... 3. Posting of signs on trees, lampposts, fences, buildings, street signs, etc." That still means I can get Doug to make us a cute sign like this and be perfectly legal, right?Source

In other, other news, my sister and I had a nice chat tonight about possibilities for my bridal shower and I am really excited! We don't always get along, as with most siblings I think, but I am so happy that she agreed to be my maid of honor. Love you K!

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Words of wisdom

Wedding guest list advice straight from the awesome Clary: Don't invite anyone who you wouldn't have over to your house for dinner, because that's what a wedding is, really, just a big dinner party.

A girl after my own heart, for sure. :)

So what else does this mean? Engagement pictures can be checked off of our list! And the weather was gorgeous, and we had a great time, and Doug really likes Clary (extra yay!), and my feelings that I booked the perfect photographer are only reaffirmed/strengthened! All in all, a good night, wouldn't you say?

Monday, October 5, 2009


I spent today home sick and pinned to our couch by two cats who with a human present to nap on could find no piece of furniture suitable to them. Therefore, while I should have used this extra time to study for my upcoming cpa exam or graduate class, I was hardly in a physical (by both definitions) position to do so. Instead I spent the day cuddling with my kitties and having a bit of a long overdue conversation with myself.

Lately I have been in a very "Hey world, I see you passing me by, but there's nothing I can do about it because I'm too busy" kind of mood. My daily routine begins with getting up for work after not getting enough sleep, working, and then coming home and either studying or falling asleep on the couch because I'm too tired to do the studying I need to be doing. I feel like I am never catching up on things that need to be done. I feel guilty when I fall asleep and should be studying or when I choose not to study and instead do something I want to do. And I'm tired of it. I've decided that I need to prioritize and simplify.

While it's still a work in progress, I think these are what I've decided to focus on:
1) Work - pretty obvious
2) The remainder of my CPA exam sections - Credit for my first passed one will only last so long, but I'm not going to rush myself either
3) Wedding planning - our countdown stands at 229 days and there are so many things left to take care of
4) Getting healthy - I haven't worked out in at least a month and let me tell you it does not feel good. My eating habits are in a similar state of disarray. I'm not necessarily concerned with losing weight but definitely getting toned and just overly more healthy.
5) And certainly not last, Doug, family and friends - I'm sick of not having enough time for them and/or feeling guilty for spending time with them instead of other commitments. There are also some people who I haven't been making time for at all and that's going to change.

And what's going to go:
1) My master's degree - The class I am currently in ends the end of this month. I will definitely be taking time off until the middle of February and am considering waiting until May or later to begin another class. I just don't feel that I need to immediately get this degree. It certainly isn't immediately necessary in my current position and it will be a while before it will be needed for me to move up. I definitely want to pursue it and I don't want to wait forever to do so, but I think a break is justified. So it's going for now.
2) The lack of a positive schedule - My current routine sucks. I want to wake up well rested. Go to work. Come home, work out and eat dinner. Followed by an hour or two of studying comprised of a specific study plan. Not studying all night and not studying whatever I can tolerate that night. Then I want to do stuff I want to do- recreational reading, tv, time with friends and family, blogging!, and working on wedding stuff. And I don't want to study and catch up on household chores all weekend either.
3) Dealing with other people's random drama that seems to be forcing itself into my life and wasting precious time that could be devoted to other things

So, what do we think? Anyone have to do something similar to get their life back under control? Anyone see something I'm missing or not thinking properly about? Thoughts, please!

Sunday, October 4, 2009

A nice reminder

While shopping with my wonderful mom (who now reads my blog- Hi Mom!) yesterday, we of course talked about Doug a lot. But, kind of out of the blue she said, "You know Jamie, you really got a good one." While I obviously know this and thank God every day for the great gift he has given me, it is always nice to get a little reminder/confirmation.

I am also so thankful that my parents love Doug. I think this line from the Edwin McCain song my dad and I will dance to illustrates how they feel: "And I can't help thinking that I'm the lucky one, You're still my baby daughter and now I've gained a son." Coming from a few past relationships where my parents were, let's say, less than thrilled with my choices this is completely refreshing. It's so nice to be able to spend time with both Doug and my parents at the same time and to really enjoy each others' company. Most weeks this is comprised of at least one weekly dinner and sometimes more and I love it.

I have a couple of other posts swirling around in this head of mine but for now they must wait as I fight with my camera to get decent pictures of some of the recently developed "small" wedding details.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Ain't that the truth

While listening to Pandora just now I heard an ad that went something like : "Marriage: It is the only family member you get to choose and it gives you a second sane person at the dinner table."

Given our recent experiences with a couple family members, I would have to say this is a fairly accurate statement.

Anyone have any terrible inlaw related stories to share, because they would sure make me feel better.

Friday, October 2, 2009

Progress and Anti-progress

One lunch break trip to the Post Office and our save the dates are officially in the mail! The USPS lady did not seem to appreciate my request for stamps that were not ugly forever stamps and I was not entirely thrilled with any of the other options, but they are in the mail either way. So now, as if the approx. $4,000 dollars in deposits and other related expenses we have already put out weren't enough, we are definitely committed to do this wedding thing!

Unfortunately, due to a counting error on my part, my parents and my maid of honor as well as a couple other random people won't be getting theirs in this round. Enough labels and envelopes but not enough actual save the dates printed = mini save the date disaster for this girl. When you consider the fact that I'm accountant this becomes especially comical, at least I think so. :)

I will post more detailed pictures of the official finished products once I give the ol' postman a few days to get them delivered to our guests. In the meantime, let's talk about the attire of someone who I followed back into the building after my successful USPS adventure. When did a 2004 Cardinals World Series t-shirt become appropriate to wear to work? I am all about supporting the boys (as you have seen here and here) but isn't this taking the idea of casual Friday a bit far?

Monday, September 28, 2009

Cubs Suck

I don't think kneeling is part of the United Methodist wedding tradition. However, if it was we would so be copying this gesture made by one of Seelen Photography's grooms.

A nice contrast

What I should have been working on tonight & what I actually did.

Save the dates ready to mail! More details on this fab paper product I've worked so hard on to come. Not promising when though because I am finding it very hard to let my beautiful babies go!

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Why we want a small wedding

Now I know small is a relative thing, but I consider our hope for the guest list to be as little over 115 as possible to be small. Especially considering we have 75+ in family between the two of us.

And yes, it's partially a budget thing but for the most part it's not because there are so many other good reasons!

1. We want to spend this incredibly important day with those that are most important to us. Our families and close friends are both incredibly important to us and we want to share our wedding with those we love and who love us. Random people that aren't actively in our lives could only detract from that experience.

2. Less random extra people = less anxiety. Both in the planning and execution stages as well as the actual events. Being immersed in a day spent celebrating with good friends and family, where everyone (and us especially) is completely comfortable. We want our day to be a joyful celebration of our marriage, not some sort of big show or spectator event. A small group promotes a closeness where emotions can flow naturally and comfortably.

3. We want to be able to spend time with our guests! The smaller the group, the more time per guest. We don't want one of those weddings where the bride and groom can't even remember who they saw or talked to. I want our guest book to remind me of the good time we had with each individual, not whether they were there or not! Also, we want to spend time with people who we are actually interested in spending time with. No use wasting precious time making conversation with people out of some forced obligation when we could be enjoying the most important day of our life so far with those most important to us.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

I just picked up the fabric swatch I ordered for the bridesmaid dresses and the color is exactly what I imagined! :)

While this pales in comparison to the major wedding related drama occurring right now, it's a little thing that made my day a bit better. Maybe it only went from terrible to bad, but I'll take it.

Sunday, September 20, 2009


suggestions for perfect fall-ish (maybe?) outfits for one guy and one girl to wear during their engagement pictures with the fab Clary which are occurring in 2 1/2 weeks.

I literally have no inspiration and too many other things going on to figure this out.

There is $20 in gift cards to here in it for whoever makes the suggestion we decide to use. Or another place of your choice, which I can only imagine would be if you don't live in the STL.

And yes, my favorite wedding planner and photographer (i.e. those who introduced me to this amazing place) are certainly eligible.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Save the date hesitation

So? What do we think? Worthy of being the official save the date? Anything to change? Remember my inspiration. I can't figure out what, but something is keeping me from making an official commitment to it.

Also, if we do go with it, does anyone think that some may view it as Doug being somewhat slighted by being upside down? For some reason I am wondering that may be the reaction of some.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

"Oh, you got to learn to roll with the changes"

While I heart REO Speedwagon and their many songs, change I do not heart. I could regale you with stories about my adverse reactions to all the various changes that have previously occurred in my life. However, I think I can summarize my feelings quite nicely. I just did a mental happy dance when I confirmed that all of my current doctors are covered by the insurance I will have with my new job! How sad is that?

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Wraparound Labels? Yeah, we've got them. :)

Thanks to a combo of lack of sleep and my fabulous design talents, I just whipped up this baby a few minutes ago. Good timing too, as we hope to send out save the dates this week. More on that to come.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

My boy is so handy

I big puffy heart having a fiance who is wickedly mechanically inclined. I never have to worry about car maintenance or house maintenance. He has now single-handedly saved my various family members from spending many many dollars to fix things that need not cost so much to fix if he does it himself. Just yesterday my car got new rotors and a few weeks ago he saved my dad from spending the money both to tow a car and fix it.

While in many aspects the fact that Doug got laid off in April has been an inconvenience, there is one area it hasn't: finishing all of the random house projects we had talked about. Since he has been off we have gotten: a new back porch (and soon to be front too), new steel entry doors, "revised" landscaping, new siding, a redone bathroom, and a redone dining room.

So, speaking of that dining room. It used to be purple. I kid you not, it was a lavender-faux finished delight that could only come from the previous owners using it as a little girl's bedroom and not a dining room. I am so sorry to say that the before pictures looked gray when uploaded to blogger, for I know you all would revel in getting to see the lavender amazing-ness. We (sort of) use it as an office, so we decided to paint it gray.And then one night we were talking about how we needed more storage and the next day I came home from work to this masterpiece:Seriously, how lucky am I? Doug's handiness and work ethic are only two of the many reasons that I love him as much as I do. I am actually a little sad that I will have to leave it when Doug gets another job and we are able to move.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Wall hanging and diploma fail.

According to the level, the picture hangers on this wall are in a completely straight line.Crooked early 1900's wall fail.

Oh, and those two frames on the bottom you ask? Yep those are the inserts that came in the frame. They will eventually hold my two diplomas. But you graduated in May, right? Yes, I did, but I still do not have my diplomas! Talk about efficiency.

Gorgeous glass vases hand blown in Poland for more than 60% off?Yes, dear Target, I think I will.We can use these on wedding day, right Stephanie? Either way $200+ in glass for less than $60!

About This Blog

Random thoughts as I plan our wedding, study for the CPA exam, and live life.


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