Tuesday, July 12, 2011

More Anniv & Birthday Stuff

Hopefully you guys won't get tired of hearing me talk about our anniversary & my birthday from the week before last... er, two weeks ago now... {wow, losing track of time}! It's just so much better than talking about Fibro all the time, blech. And quite frankly, it's been a really rough, exhausting, overwhelming couple of weeks. So for more interesting things....

Hubster surprised me with an early birthday present back a few weeks ago with PhotoShop Elements. It is something I'm still trying to figure out, so if you know any tips or tricks, please share!

Several days prior to my birthday, my dear friend Annemarie took me to lunch at my favorite Chinese restaurant on the planet {seriously, this place is amazing, no one I ever take there has been disappointed!!}

Tim & I had agreed to no gifts, and yet he surprised me {because he's SO sweet!} around midnight on Thursday 6/23 & Friday 6/24 as the clock rolled over into our anniversary with this beauty:

Sorry for the poor picture quality {taken with my phone}, but let me tell you... this Samsung fit-in-your-pocket camera is exactly what I needed! I really love it!! And besides, right now the best part is it has a working flash, yay!!!! :) Oh how I have missed having a camera with a flash for the past 6 months.

Then, as if that wasn't enough, he also got me a nifty iHome unit for my birthday. Which quite frankly, stunk, and we returned it. My mom & stepdad also got me one but a different brand, so I'm using that one instead! I had first run across them in our Santa Barbara, CA, hotel room. It was a true delight of an alarm clock. It plays from and charges your iPhone or iPod, and has all sorts of neat features. Unfortunately, we learned the hard way since then that they don't sell those specific ones to consumers, only to hotel chains. Muh-huh?!?! Seriously, frustrating. But we've come to at least mostly love this one, despite two days of it not waking me up on time {thankfully over the weekend!} because pausing the iPhone means it won't work, and because it has a supposedly-neat-that-just-drives-me-batty feature of a Mon-Fri alarm and Sat & Sun alarm. After we've finally played around with it, I think we have it mostly figured out, and I really am thankful for it. We have yet to figure out what else we're going to purchase from Amazon with the credit we have from returning the other unit we didn't like at all, but for now, I am enjoying this baby:

Our weekend getaway for our anniversary & my birthday was really nice. We went to my hometown and took the drive slowly so we could enjoy it and not be stressed out about getting there.

11 years ago on June 24th, we met at Subway to eat breakfast, read Scripture, and pray over our wedding day together {so yeah, you can tell we aren't into all that superstitious stuff...we even took pictures together before the ceremony--gasp!}. So what better way to help celebrate on the road, than to grab breakfast at the oasis Subway?! Here I am still learning my new camera and cutting my face off:

We began our trip with some interesting clouds...

...which thankfully never turned into anything {not even rain} and the latter part of the trip was gorgeous & sunny!

When we arrived, we were greeted by an oddly empty house since my mom & stepdad were traveling for our first 24 hours or so there - it was soooo nice & relaxing! They live on a little lake surrounded by trees, and such beautiful peace & quiet!!

I was so exhausted from a stressful week at work, but wasn't able to fall asleep in the car. I immediately crashed on the couch once we arrived and slept for an hour and a half! After that, we brought some KFC over to my brother's house where his family & my dad were anxiously awaiting the food's our arrival.

Isn't that onesie just the cutest?!! ;)

We really enjoyed our time Friday night just hanging out, playing in the yard, the girls climbing on Tim or the trees, while we awaited their mom returning from work {she's a nurse and works 12 hour days 2 days a week, and this was her first week back after Joshua was born}.

My brother sets up traps around his property to catch the chipmunks that are trying to get into everything around his house, and loads them up on his Jimmy and takes them away so they're free somewhere else.

And if you know my brother at all, you know that's not quite the entire story....

My brother's newest love. He says this thing is absolutely amazing. I'm glad he enjoys it and it can help save them money on Starbucks runs. I don't care to ever find out - coffee is disgusting.

Our anniversary night ice cream treat with family:

Saturday was full of our cousin reunion - which was such a blessing and I'm so thankful we got to do that!! Despite all the hard work Tim, dad, & I put into it, it was so completely & utterly rewarding!

I'm kind of sorry I didn't get pictures of Tim running back & forth in the rain as he unloaded & then reloaded things when we thought we might still be able to have it in the park shelter house. It was sad, but also kinda funny. He gently but firmly insisted I stay in the car {and I'm really thankful he did} - it was pouring rain & storming hard when he was loading the car back up. I felt so, so, so badly for him! He was soaked the rest of the afternoon, poor guy.

Tim & Tim - oh how I love seeing these two guys just hanging out!!
everyone looking at a great slideshow of childhood pics my dad put together

first cousins who were there: L to R - Amber, me, Gerry, Stephanie {plus daughter Mellie}, Aimee, Tim - missing Michael, Randy, Alicia, David, & Matthew

Joshua was the hit of the event with the teenagers!! :)

Saturday night my cousin Aimee & her family invited us to join them for dinner. We went to Ruby Tuesday's and had a really nice, relaxing time getting to know them all better.

Sunday was really a delight. I got to hear my brother preach one of my favorite sermons of his ever. He'd emailed me the week prior to make sure it was okay with me for him to use an illustration from a traumatic event in my life as part of his sermon. I'm trying to get a copy of the recording so that I can tell you even more about it. I was so enthralled and emotional while he was preaching that I'd do a terrible job of relaying it all. So for now, just trust me, it left a big impact on me!

It was followed by a birthday lunch with many of my favorite people!

After that, just before heading back out of town, we met up with Aimee and her family in the hotel parking lot to say goodbye. Little Alyvia was asleep and sick in the car, so we did the best we could to include her in the pic! :) Of course... I'm not at all shy about such things so after them briefly commenting on how it was too bad she couldn't be in the picture, I posed like this, and they followed along! :)

After that we finished the trip by eating dinner at Cracker Barrel, yummo!

The day after my birthday, I was back at work going about business as usual when I got a few unexpected guests {Brian, Monica, & Parker} and a nice birthday surprise!

My coworker Sarah, who is an amazing cook even though I don't particularly like much of it myself, and she made this incredible chocolate cake and it was totally vegan! I couldn't believe it. Amazing.

Thanks again for tolerating all my pictures, and for sharing in the delights & blessings of my special weekend with me. :) It's not every year I get to do these types of things, and it was really, truly special for me.

1 comment:

Rachel Jones said...

looks like you had a fantastic time with all your family and looks like some fun meals and treats too!!