Tag Archives: cruise

37 Weeks!


I’m 37 weeks pregnant today, which is a milestone – if Luke is born, a stay in the NICU is no longer required! That doesn’t mean it won’t happen (though we pray it doesn’t!), but it’s not a certainty – and I like that.

Luke is head down (not breech – yay!) and I have no idea if he has “dropped” yet. How do I tell? The list of things I don’t know grows by the day.

However, the list of things that need to be done before Luke arrives is getting shorter (yes, there is a literal list hanging on the fridge). Once I cross everything off, feel free to come out and play, Little Guy!

We will have a final growth scan next Thursday, so please keep praying that Luke is getting bigger and that my fluid levels are rising (or are at least above 5). Now that I’m drinking at least 100 ounces of water per day, I feel his kicks a lot more! I think he’s swimming in all of the extra fluid :)

Finally, Mom, Chris, Kourt and the kids are on a cruise to Mexico, Belize and Honduras until Sunday – and of course mom is freaking out about Luke coming while she’s at sea. I don’t see it happening, and I’m happy to report that we are now half way through their vacation with no signs of labor (knock on wood)! Let’s keep Luke cooking until Nana and Company return :)

Happy (Belated) Birthday, Weatherman!


That’s right! Yesterday was Chad’s 29th birthday, and it was a great one :)

Happy birthday, baby!

Happy birthday, baby!

Because he had to work, we did most of the celebrating on Friday night. We had dinner and drinks at Flying Saucer, then headed over to Willy D’s (a dueling piano bar) for some entertainment. We were definitely entertained…but mostly bythe other patrons! There were a lot of interesting characters and questionable decisions made around us, but all in all it was a good night. When the drunk people started recognizing Chad and spreading the word to one another, we decided it was best we head home for the night :) As luck would have it, we got home right at midnight, so I sang him Happy Birthday (not like Marilyn Monroe) and we ate his birthday ice cream cake while watching The League. A perfect ending to the night!



On Saturday, his ACTUAL birthday, we slept in (GLORIOUS) and then had brunch at B-Side, a local hole-in-the-wall. I had some AMAZING blueberry pancakes, and Chad had the biscuit mountain – two

homemade biscuits topped with hash browns, sausage cream gravy and eggs over easy. It was super Southern, y’all! We came home to play Chad’s new Xbox Kinect (thanks, family-in-love!), and I got sweaty and

sore. Which, in hindsight, wasn’t the best of ideas – since I ran a 5k a few hours later! But I made it home in time to make one of Chad’s favorite meals for his birthday dinner – stromboli. And of course, more birthday ice cream cake! In case you’re wondering, it was chocolate cake, mint chocolate chip ice cream, white icing and fudge decorations on top. DELISH!!

One of the funniest things that happened this weekend was when Chad said “This is the first birthday you’ve spent with me in a long time. Definitely the first one since we moved to Arkansas.” (Last year I was in Cary, North Carolina, for a work conference at SAS.) That seemed off to me, but I couldn’t pinpoint where I was for his birthday in 2010, so I let it go. In the middle of my shower, it hit me: IN 2010 WE WERE ON A CRUISE, GETTING ENGAGED, FOR HIS BIRTHDAY! Point: Weather Wife :)

So happy birthday to my amazing, wonderful, loving and kind husband – I am so blessed to be your wife, and I look forward to a lifetime of birthdays to celebrate together. I love you!!



Yesterday was the one year anniversary of our engagement. It’s amazing how one little word – yes – can change your life forever! It was an amazing day, and it will always be fun to look back and remember the flood of emotions that happened in just a few minutes. From Chad trying to propose 4-5 times before I actually went along with it, to turning around mid-sentence and seeing him on bended knee, to hearing him say the most beautiful speech and ask “Will you marry me?”, to crying, to heart racing, to hugging, to saying YES! (twice!), putting on the ring and then a lot more crying. It was such a magical moment!

For anyone who hasn’t seen the photo progression of the proposal in action, or if you just want to relive it with me, here it is :)

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365 Days


One year ago today, I packed up all of my earthly belongings and drove away from my childhood home, where my entire family lives on a single street in a city with a population of 291, en route to Little Rock, Arkansas. Chad and I had been dating for just over three years, living 6.5 hours apart the entire time. I’d secured myself a job and a place to live, and had it on good authority that Chad would propose before the year was up (read: I made him promise he would propose before the year was up before I agreed to move out of state).

So many things have happened in the past 365 days – it’s almost unreal. I started a new job. I moved – twice. We joined our first church together. I got engaged! Chad and I took our first vacation together (the engagement cruise). I planned a wedding. I made approximately 16 round-trip flights to Houston for family, holiday and wedding-related things (both my wedding and others). WE GOT MARRIED. We honeymooned in Mexico for the most amazing week of my life. I made significant accomplishments at work. The list goes on and on…

When I look back on it, there is a huge mixture of emotions that I can recall. Lots of nerves when I first moved here. Joy from seeing Chad several times a week, rather than once every 8 weeks. Pure elation and shock when Chad proposed. Stress when it came to wedding planning. A complete surrealism as I walked down the aisle. Total relaxation on the pristine beaches of Playa del Carmen – and so much more.

Yes, it has been quite a year for me/us. It’s amazing how so much can change in such a short time. Let’s all just make sure we’re taking the time to ENJOY life!

Here’s the past 365 days in a slideshow (just the highlights!):

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Recapping the Cruise


Well, you all already know mine and Chad’s favorite part of the cruise – ENGAGEMENT! However, some other stuff did go down during those 4 magical days on the Carnival Elation – so in case you care, here are the highlights:

Wednesday, December¬†8 – The Day Before We Leave: Chad’s birthday! Except he had to work late :( Originally, he was going to get off at 6…then 7…then 8…and finally he showed up at 8:40. While waiting, I managed to get my nails done (that came in handy!), buy some new makeup, pace back and forth in his apartment (the ring was in the SAME ROOM and I had no idea!) and take out my frustration via Twitter. We had a romantic dinner of sandwiches in the car as we drove to Jackson, MS, to spend the night. All was well until we got to Pine Bluff, AR, where we encoungetered the thickest, scariest fog ever. I put my big girl pants on and forged ahead, keeping the end goal in mind, but inside I was terrified – it was like a horror movie! Speaking of horror movies, at one point while driving I suddenly came up on some bright lights RIGHT IN MY FACE. I screamed HOLY CRAP! and my heart was RACING. What was it, you ask? A cross covered in Christmas lights. Yeah, I know. Embarrassing.

Thursday, December 9 – Day 1: Hooray! The day is finally here! We had an icky hotel breakfast and quickly got back on the road. Across the street from the hotel was a Dunkin’ Donuts (too bad we hadn’t seen it at 2 a.m. when we arrived or we could have skipped the icky hotel breakfast!), and you bet your bottom dollar I hit that up! We made the 3-hour trek down to Mobile, AL, and boarded our home for the next 4 days – the Carnival Elation. We ate and explored our way around the ship before finally making it to the casino after dinner. A few hours later, we were up $300 and called it quits – SUCCESS!

Friday, December 10 – Day 2: We started the day laying out by the pool and in the hot tub, enjoyed some trivia and a show, headed to dinner, GOT ENGAGED, and then hit up a comedy show. Obviously the best part of this was when we got engaged – which you can read more about in my last post. (Have tissues handy!)

Saturday, December 11 – Day 3: Our first day as an engaged couple! We spent it on a gorgeous Mexican beach, on the secluded southern tip of Cozumel. It was perfect – 80 degrees, sunny, two beach chairs, an umbrella, adult beverages, the best fajitas ever, magazines and FIANCES! Seriously, I could not have imagined a more perfect day in my life.

Sunday, December 12 – Day 4: This day…not so good. From perfection the day before, this day brought 65 MPH winds, 10 foot waves and a ship that rocked back and forth violently ALL DAY. Of course, it made me nauseus all day, so I didn’t get out of bed. Chad and I watched football and every ship event was cancelled :(

Monday, December 13 – We’re home: We got back into Mobile, got off the ship and got on the phone – calling every person we’d ever met in our lives :) Chad drove the 8 hours back home while I told our engagement story over and over again – and he didn’t complain once :) We even rocked out to the wedding playlists he’d made – grouped by ceremony, dinner and reception. This is why I love him!

All in all, it was the most amazing vacation of my life, with the love of my life!

The Proposal!


First of all, THANK YOU to all of my wonderful friends and family who have congratulated us and sent their well wishes upon our engagement! We are SO excited and SO blessed in SO many ways!!!

I know I’ve told a lot of you already, but here’s the proposal story :) And if you read this and hear me telling it again (and again, and again), just go with it :) It’s a good story!

It was the second night of the cruise – the night of formal dinner on the ship. Chad and I got all dressed up in our best outfits and headed to the first of Carnival’s onboard dance shows. During the show, I sat as I always do – with my hand on Chad’s leg. Little did I know that it was a mere inches away from the box that held my gorgeous engagement ring! After the show, we met up with some of the ship friends we’d made and Chad suggested they take pictures of us in the big atrium. I shot him down, saying we needed to go pick up our fancy bottle of expensive wine I won at a museum benefit a while back and then head straight to dinner. At dinner, I once again sat on Chad’s left – the side of the ring box pocket – which made him nervous. We made it through dinner (and the bottle of wine) and Chad suggested we leave with the other couple from our table. I shot him down, saying I wanted to relax and finish my wine. Finally, I said I was ready to go and that I wanted to take a picture by the Christmas tree in the front of the dining room – Chad eagerly agreed :)

I handed the camera to the hostess (who, unbeknownst to me, was an accomplice to Chad’s plan) and was about to turn around for the picture. Behind me, I hear Chad say, “Are you ready for this?” and as I turn to say “Well yeah, it’s just a picture,” there he was, down on one knee! I said “Oh. My. God.” and immediately began crying as he said “I knew from the moment I met you that I wanted to spend the rest of my life with you. Will you marry me?” I immediately said YES! and he stood up to give me a big hug and put the ring on my finger :) I said yes again – just to make sure he heard me :) The whole time, the hostess was taking pictures of us, so we have THE most perfect pictures from the engagement that are absolutely priceless to me.

The ring is an emerald cut diamond set on a white gold band of smaller diamonds – and it’s better than anything I’ve ever dreamed of. Later I found out Chad has had it for MONTHS – clearly he is more patient than I am :) All in all, it was the perfect engagement, the perfect ring, and the perfect man – I could not be happier!

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And Then There Were Two…


Yes, TWO days til the cruise! I cannot begin to tell you how excited I am :) However, there are still about 9 million things I need to do between now and 6 p.m. tomorrow, so there’s always the last minute stress that comes with that. Am I alone here?

Does anyone else wait until the last minute to do things, or is that just me? Sure, I planned out and packed all of my cute outfits last night, but you can’t be 100% packed because of the necessities that require waiting until the last minute. Plus I have to make sure that Chad has everything he needs too – heaven forbit we forget an essential, like a passport, bathing suit, etc. And then there’s work, which is actually really busy right now! SIGH.

Woo-sah. Two days. Just two more days.