Monday, October 27, 2014


I'll save all of my sentimental thoughts and just share some adorable photos from Nathan's sixth birthday weekend.  
Yes, we all can agree with the fact that he is pretty darn cute.  

We had a few friends over for lunch after church.  When I say a few, I mean about 50.  As of Saturday at noon, there was only six people coming.  I panicked because Nathan was expecting lots of friends, and once again, I didn't plan ahead very well (such is the story of my life!).  So I invited a few more, and then people who said they couldn't come at first texted and said they could come.  We had a Chipotle inspired lunch and cupcakes.  It was easy and fun.  
But most importantly, this guy felt very loved.

The singing was LOUD!

Nathan with a couple of his favorite girls.

Presents!  He did ask me to tell everyone to bring him a present.  I didn't, of course, but I thought it was very cute (and rude) that he thought it was appropriate to ask.

The boys with Grandpa… fun to have him here to celebrate.

His actual birthday was the next day.  He requested oatmeal (????) for breakfast.

He ate outside in his new birthday costume.

I'll be sad when Lego building isn't a part of birthdays around here.

We ate at Cracker Barrel for dinner.

Pancakes and eggs and sausage for the kids.  Chris and I shared the grilled chicken tenderloin.  Graham always gets the shrimp.  A little known fact, I used to work at Cracker Barrel.  I worked every Friday and Saturday night during nursing school.  What an exciting life I led!

Anyway, sweet Nathan, you are a JOY to our family.  I don't want to talk about how I feel about you being six.  But even when you are THIRTY SIX, you'll always be my baby.
Love you, Cry Cry.

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

The Story of Us {Part Three}

In honor of our 14th anniversary today, I'm attempting to finish up our story!
(So I guess we know how the story ends… :)

So I called his house and left a message with what sounded like his mom.  It seems strange to even say that because I don't think people really do that anymore, especially young people.  We had to do awkward things back then, like leave messages with peoples' roommates and parents.  Chris says when he got the message, he thought it was his buddy, Aaron, messing with him.  He never expected me to call.  He had driven away from that Sonic with the impression that I never wanted to see him again.  

He decided to give it the benefit of the doubt and called me back.  I have a distinct memory, laying on my bedroom floor in my sleeping bag in the dark (because the room didn't have any lights and my moving truck had already left with my lamps), talking with Chris for a couple of hours.  I can't remember what we talked about, but I hung up thinking that this just might go somewhere.

The next day I moved to Minnesota.  I got a job at the University of Minnesota Children's Hospital and started my new position rather quickly.  I convinced some of my favorite people in the world to be my roommates.  We moved into an apartment complex literally in the parking lot of my church, the church that has always felt like coming home for me.  My life became the polar opposite of my life in Indianapolis.  It was full of friends, a church I loved, ministry I loved, and on any given night, my roommates and I just might break into spontaneous crafting and laughter.  AND, strangely enough I had a boy that seemed to be interested in me.  It was like I was living somebody else's life.  And it was such a refreshing change from the prior year.  

Roommates :)

Thus began our phone relationship.  We talked on the phone.  A lot.  I think I did actually own a cell phone then, but for emergencies only.  So phone talking was only when you were home (sigh, I miss those days).  We talked long into the night most nights and even in the middle of the night when I would work night shift.  He invited me to come to Texas to visit him.  It worked out that way because I could get a longer chunk of time off then he could.  He bought me a plane ticket.  I was going to Texas for five days.  It seemed like a good idea at the time we worked out the details of the ticket, but as the day came closer, I started to inwardly panic.  FIVE DAYS!  What was I thinking?  Five days was a long time, especially if the first day happened to flop… what if conversation was hard after the first couple of hours?  What would we then do for the next 4 1/2 days?  The normal girl would just be super excited, but I started doing my awkward Sarah thing and began to mega worry, not eating much, and playing out in my mind everything that could go wrong.  

So I got off the plane (I think I was wearing overalls). He greeted me at the gate.  This was pre-9/11 so people could do that.  We hugged, and it was only sort of strange.  The car ride was fine.  He cleaned up his car for me.  I remember it having that clean-car smell.  We arrived at the place where we would be staying (he lived with a family in Dallas) and I opened the door to the guest room and screamed (really, I did) with delight.  Niki and Shane were there, with baby Cole.  I was immediately at ease.  Nervousness completely gone.  Chris gets lots of points for this one.  We often talk about how those five days would have gone without Shane and Niki there.  I think this decision/idea of Chris's may have saved our relationship.  
I think this is our second picture together.  Blurry, but worth the memory.

We spent the next three days with Shane and Niki doing various fun things around Dallas.  It was wonderfully comfortable.  Having a baby to distract us a bit was nice too.  We met some of Chris's friends.  We went to the State Fair.  We ate lots and lots (and I was able to eat!… no nervous stomach). Then Shane and Niki left and we had a day and a half to ourselves.  It was great, a continuation of the fun we had been having.  I got on the plane to return home feeling peaceful.  Chris was wonderful, good-looking, smart, Godly, and somehow, he seemed to like ME???  And then I closed my eyes and fell asleep, waking up in Minnesota.

Meeting friends.  I was very nervous about gaining the approval of Corbin and TJ whom I had heard so many things about.  It helped smooth things over when Cole projectile vomited minestrone soup all over the table.

After Shane and Niki left, we went running one afternoon.

We spent an evening in downtown Fort Worth. 

The next months were much of the same.  We talked on the phone.  We wrote letters.  We flew back and forth between Texas and Minnesota multiple times.  We emailed.  We met each other's parents and friends.  We got approval from those that we both loved and respected.  We even started to use the "M" word… which is crazy, right?  To consider marrying someone that you've spent a grand total of about 12 days with?  There were decisions to be made and things to consider.
We look a little more comfortable together in this picture, yes?

For our first Christmas together, I made him a flannel blanket.  It's still my favorite napping blanket :)

To be continued… 

Part One here.
Part Two here.