Tag Archives: holidays

Are You There, Blog? It’s Me, Brittney.

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So it’s been almost a  year two years (math is hard) since the last time the ol’ blog was updated and nothing of any significance has happened. OH WAIT…we got another dog, went on our dream European vacation, started trying to have a baby, found out that my infertility issues meant we’d require IVF treatments, went on some fab vacations, miraculously got pregnant, AND SO MUCH MORE!

I realize it’s impossible to catch up on a year’s worth of life in just a few bullets (because really, who wants to read more than that?), but  here’s a best effort…or at least an effort. Note: I will save The Infertility Saga for another time.

  • Summer 2013 – We went to Michigan to surprise Chad’s stepdad, Brent, for his 50th birthday party! We also went to Florida for the first annual Family Feud Fantasy Football Draft!
  • Fall 2013 – We got Abby! Yes, we added a second corgi to our family and she’s obsessed with Chad. It works out nicely because Cooper is obsessed with me and now we each have our own furball :) Abby is now 8.5 and Cooper is just over 2; both weigh about 34 pounds :)
  • December 2013 – CHAD TURNED 30! I lied and told him we were going to Mexico, but we actually went to pick up his family and best friend at the airport for a long weekend of fun :) Although I know Chad was slightly disappointed in not going to Mexico, I know he was truly surprised and thrilled his family was in town. I also threw him a surprise party that weekend, so it was kind of a big deal (he has his work cut out for him when I turn 30 in 2016!)
  • February 2014 – I turned 28 and decided it was time to think about starting a family!
  • June 2014 – WE WENT ON OUR DREAM VACATION TO EUROPE! Two weeks in Rome, Paris and Barcelona. Hands down, our favorite spot was Paris. It was the most beautiful, romantic and tasty city EVER (and of course, the most expensive). We agree that if we ever win the lottery or come into a large sum of money, we’d have a house in Paris :)
  • October 2014 – We went to Chicago with Chad’s best friend Joe and his girlfriend Ali – IT WAS AWESOME. We did all of the big touristy things in 36 hours – Hancock Building, Sears Tower, museums, deep dish pizza, visited the bar from The League, Second City, architecture cruise, amazing food…it was a whirlwind!
  • December 2014 – Haley and Mike got married and we celebrated with a ton of folks I hadn’t seen in forever!
  • January 9-10, 2015 – I went on a work trip to Santa Fe, NM and didn’t feel well.
  • January 11, 2015 – WE FOUND OUT WE’RE PREGNANT!!! Go ahead and tell God something can’t be done – he’ll LOL at you.
  • March 2015 – We went to Michigan to visit Chad’s family and had a great time!  Yoga, games and all of the usual fun (minus the booze, for me).
  • April 27, 2015 – I felt the baby move (for sure) for the first time!
  • May 7, 2015 – Chad felt the baby move for the first time!
  • May 8, 2015 – OUR GENDER REVEAL IS TOMORROW, Y’ALL!!
  • May 9, 2015 – My first Mother’s Day :)

There are approximately 11 million photos I could post from the above adventures, but I know which one you really want :)

Baby G at 20 weeks!

Baby G at 20 weeks!

 

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A New Year, A New Chapter

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Well, 2013 is officially here! It’s shaping up to be quite the year for us – we have so many dreams for the year and know that it’s going to be one for the record books.

Ringing in the New Year TEXAS STYLE!

Ringing in the New Year TEXAS STYLE!

Of course, moving back to Houston on December 29, 2012, is the biggest change for 2012. Chad is changing careers and we’re saving up for our dream home in the Woodlands (God willing). And if a change of careers and locations isn’t enough, we hope to add one more to our family this year – a puppy! :)

We rang in the New Year with delicious Tex-Mex, Mexican beer (for Chad) and a margarita (for me), a movie (This is 40) and watching the ball drop from the comfort of the couch (I’m not feeling well, so we didn’t go out). It was so great to have just the two of us, spending time together and celebrating where life has brought us in the past year – and dreaming about where it will take us in 2013!

We hope everyone had a great time ringing in the New Year, and that 2013 brings you all the joy and prosperity you deserve!

Christmas 2012 – Snowpocalypse!

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First of all, Merry (belated) Christmas to everyone!!! Chad had Christmas Eve and Christmas Day off for the first time in FIVE YEARS this year, and I was so thankful to be able to spend this most precious holiday with him. We got to go to the candlelight Christmas Eve service together, sleep in, open our gifts and then spend the day enjoying our new toys…until the snow came.

As the Weatherman, Chad knew (and therefore I knew) about the snowpocalypse that was going to hit us on Christmas night. Others did not heed our warnings – in fact, we should have heeded them more ourselves! Alas, we did not.

It began sleeting early in the day and right around dinner time the big flakes began to fall. After just a few hours, several inches had accumulated and we could hear tree limbs snapping and crashing to the ground regularly. Around 9 p.m., we ventured outside to frolic and play the eskimo way – Chad did manly things while I built a snowman with some neighbor kids and took pictures :) A few minutes later, transformers lit up the sky with bright flashes of light – and then we were surrounded by complete darkness.

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At the same time, a car tried to make it up the hill near our apartment building. Chad, being the helpful Michigander that he is, ran up to help the poor fella (who did not understand the concept of letting the car rock back and forth for momentum and then PUNCHING IT to get up the hill). They eventually decided to coast down to the bottom of the hill and start anew – and then a huge tree limb fell in front of the car. The driver then made his girlfriend and their 2 year old daughter get out of the car (out of fear that a limb would fall on the car and injure them) and I invited them into our dark, but still warm house. The ladies chatted it up while the boys put the car somewhere safe for the evening. How’s that for southern hospitality?

When it was all said and done, we had 10.3 inches of snow. TEN POINT THREE INCHES!!!

The power going out around bedtime isn’t that big of a deal. But when you wake up and it’s freezing and you have no food (and the food you DO have requires cooking), it’s a far worse situation. We scavenged for what we could, and then I cried because I felt overwhelmed by all the things I need to get done in the next few days, the fact that I was hungry, and the fact that I was cold and it was only going to get colder. I even called around to some pizza a

I LOVE LAMP!

I LOVE LAMP!

nd Chinese delivery places to see if they’d bring me food – they said our road was too dangerous because of the hill. And Chad had to leave me to go to work (he had to walk half a mile to a place where a big news truck could pick him up – THAT IS HOW SNOWED IN WE WERE!) So I did what any normal person would do – I took a nap and prayed that when I woke up, this would all be a terrible nightmare! Well, it almost worked – I woke up and the fan was lightly spinning – the power had blinked on! But it only lasted about 30 seconds :( So I headed to my car to read my book in the warmth and charge up my phone. About an hour and a half into that – BOOM! I saw the neighbor’s porch light was on! (I couldn’t see ours because the tree that used to be near our door now covers our walkway and you have to crouch really low to get to our door.) Sure enough, I got in our house and immediat

ely blasted the heat and turned on the lights – HOORAY FOR POWER!!! And then I texted the universe to let them know my perils had ended.

In the immortal roads of Brick Tamland – I LOVE LAMP!!!

A Month of Thanksgiving

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Everyone seems to have done the “Month of Thanksgiving” posts on Facebook/Twitter this year – you know, where every day you say one thing you’re thankful for. Well, for half of this month, I was in Peru…and the internet is shotty AT BEST there. So here is my list of 30 things I’m thankful for :)

  1.  Jesus – Without him, I would have no life.
  2. Chad – He’s the best gift God could have given me! He’s so loving, patient and kind. He’s a truly genuine person – something that’s hard to come by these days. He’s never fake, never spiteful, never arrogant. He’s humble, a great leader, and my best friend. I could go on forever!
  3. Toilets and toilet seats – I told you I’d been in Peru for half the month! I peed in a hole and toilet seats were very hard to come by. I’m telling you, it’s the little things!
  4. Family – Between me and Chad, we seriously have some of the coolest relatives EVER. Of course, I love my own mother and sister to death, but I feel the same way about Chad’s mom, sister, brother and stepdad! And of course Payton and Lilly have special places in my heart :) Not to mention our amazing aunts, uncles and grandparents!
  5. Southwest Rapid Rewards Credit Card – Not that we need a credit card, but we put our monthly gas, groceries and some other expenses on this bad boy in order to earn frequent flyer miles. We went to Vegas for free in August, and we’ve earned two more round trip flights already!
  6. The gym – It always makes you feel better, even if you didn’t feel like going!
  7. Homemade meals – I love to cook, and I really love trying out new things. I’m glad Chad is open to eating what I make! And it makes me feel really good to cook delicious, healthy meals for us :)
  8. Pictures of corgis and dachshunds – We WILL be getting these dogs when we get our first home. Mark my words!
  9. Christmas decorations and music – Christmas is my favorite time of year, and seeing all the sights, hearing all the sounds, smelling all the smells and tasting all the foods of the season makes me SO HAPPY!
  10. Laughing – Chad and I are ALWAYS laughing – and if you ask me, there isn’t enough of that in the world! We’re even able to laugh when the times are tough, which is always great.
  11. Fleece-lined tights – Seriously. These things are great! They keep me warm in winter (they wouldn’t cut it in Chicago or somewhere with a REAL winter), and allow me to wear something besides pants every.single.day.
  12. Mexican food – I really don’t think this needs an explanation.
  13. Cuddle time – There is really nothing better than curling up on the couch with your husband, in your PJs or sweatpants and fuzzy socks, and watching TV. Promise.
  14. Football – How about the Texans this year?! AWESOME. And the Longhorns did better than last year…that’s about all I can say about that. But YAY TEXANS!!!
  15. Employment – In a time where so many are jobless, I’m very thankful to have a job that allows me to use my degree, talents and passion. The paycheck is nice too :)
  16. My charity/cause-loving friends – Every time I turn around, someone is raising money for a cause that is near and dear to their heart. That is so great. THANK YOU, friends, for dedicating yourselves to such worthy causes!
  17. G-chat – Because I live in another state, G-chat enables me to talk to some of my best friends almost every day. Whether they’re in Texas, New York or somewhere in between, it enables me to stay connected to their lives, despite the distance.
  18. White sand beaches with turquoise waters – Sadly, we did not make it to the beach this year. But that does not take the beach out of my list of loves! There is nothing like sitting under an umbrella with your toes in the sand, the wind  in your hair, and the waves crashing around you.
  19. All things pumpkin and gingerbread – Are there better cold weather/holiday season flavors? I think not. My first attempt at pumpkin bread went AMAZINGLY WELL, so that is going to be a new tradition. Gingerbread lattes are like Christmas in a cup, and how could you not like that??
  20. The Walking Dead – I know, a silly thing to be thankful for. But we really do look forward to it Sunday nights! Plus, it gives us cuddle time, since it’s filled with scary and cringe-worthy moments. See #13.
  21. Elf – My sister and I watch this together EVERY YEAR. We can quote the entire thing, and sometimes do so via text. Until I got married, when I’d go home for Christmas, Kourt and I would share her room/bed (because the kids are in my old room) on Christmas Eve night. We would always watch that movie and then wake up together just like when we were little kids. TMI? Get over it – this is my blog!
  22. Coffee – It’s delicious. It’s a great way to start my day. And it’s always made and given to me by my amazing husband – BONUS!
  23. Your prayers – We’ve had so many people praying for us this year, through some really tough times. I cannot tell you how much this means to us, and how much it has lifted our spirits. There aren’t enough words to say how much we appreciate all of you and your prayers!
  24. Blake Shelton – He’s hilarious. He’s attractive. He can sing. Need I say more? The bromance between him and Adam Levine is hilarious on The Voice, and I’ve been a fan of his long before he became the megastar he is today.
  25. Our church family and friends – We’ve been so blessed to meet so many great people here in Little Rock, who have really taken us in as their own. These are some really genuine, loving people with servant’s hearts – and I’m so glad we’ve gotten to know them over the years! From inviting us over on a random Tuesday to letting us spend major holidays with you, we REALLY appreciate it!
  26. Immanuel Baptist Church – Our church is amazing. We unapologetically stand for what the Bible says and Jesus. My faith has been strengthened and I have spiritually grown so much, thanks to the teachings of Pastor Gary and the other leaders in the church.
  27. Loganberry Frozen Yogurt – It’s Chad’s favorite place, and I can always convince him that we need to go there for a guilt-free treat :)
  28. Old school Christmas movies – I love them all! Charlie Brown, The Grinch, Rudolph, Frosty…you name it! And I’ve scheduled them ALL to record this year. JOY!
  29. Pastor Victor and Pastor Roger in Peru – These are two extremely hard working men, who face incredible hardships in their work every day. It was a pleasure to get to know them while on my mission trip, and I pray that God continues to use them to further His kingdom!
  30. YOU! – I have so many amazing friends, who fill my life with laughter, pride and joy every day. Thank you for always being there for me – whether I needed a sounding board, a shoulder to cry/freak out on, or a room to stay in while in town :)

Where to Start?!

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After 20 days out of the office (Peru and Thanksgiving), my head is spinning a little. Don’t get me wrong, I’m glad to be back in the office – I’m a creature of habit who loves a routine schedule…and being off just promotes being lazy, eating and spending. All of that must stop!

But I’m staring at my inbox right now, feeling overwhelmed. Where to start?! I guess I’ll follow the advice I give when managing a big project/announcement and other people look at me with a distressed look that says “WHAT DO WE DO?! THERE IS SO MUCH TO DO!” And that is to just pick something – one thing – and do it. Do it well. And then move on to the next.

You probably think I’m crazy, but I’m really glad to be back in the office. I love what I do, and I love working. Granted, if I had some kiddos to attend to while at home, I’d probably like staying home a lot more (not that it’s not great…it just gets old after a while!). But for now – and probably for the future as well – it’s time to get some work done!

Happy Leap Day!

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It’s February 29, that special day that comes around once every four years. Except really, it’s nothing special – it’s just like any other day – but hey, I’m always down for a reason to “celebrate.”

Yesterday I thought Leap Day was going to postpone our paychecks by a day – so I was not a fan. But today I discovered that we had, in fact, been paid – Leap Day, you’re back in my good graces!

Admittedly, we’re not doing anything special tonight. I’ll rush home after work, scarf down some dinner and then head to church like I do every Wednesday night. I’ll get home around 7:30 and curl up on the couch with The Hubs to chat about our day and watch Modern Family. Sounds like a pretty good Leap Day to me.

And if you’re one of the few people who read the above paragraph and said to yourself “But The Weatherman isn’t off on Wednesdays, he’s off Thursdays and Fridays??” first of all, wow. You’re good. Second of all – there will be severe weather/tornadoes in Arkansas on Friday, so he’s going to have to go to work then :( Which is sad, but it means our steak, baked potato and asparagus dinner is getting bumped up to Thursday, when he’ll be home all day and have plenty of time to marinate/grill over the coals :) HEY! I just realized that’s tomorrow! YAY!!! I love me a good steak.

Clearly I am very, very random.

First Married Valentine’s Day

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Yesterday was our first “married” Valentine’s Day, and it was one for the books. In the past, celebrating Valentine’s Day on the ACTUAL day has been a very rare occasion, considering it often fell on a weekday and we lived 7 hours apart. But, now that we’re married, that distance thing is no longer an issue (knock on wood).

The day started with me going to the gym (I know, you’re shocked). When I came back, The Hubs had set out my gift and card on the kitchen counter, as we are like children on Christmas morning and can’t wait till the evening to open presents :) I got a super sweet card and a blooming flower in a vase from Hallmark (at my request, the budget was slim). I got Chad a card that I found in Michigan in January (I really liked it, so I scooped it up at their Target, in fear of not being able to find it in Little Rock), a House Divided Texas-OU flag (We’ve literally talked about this since we very first started dating. Our then non-existent home office would be Texas-OU themed with various forms of collegiate collateral everywhere. Now, said office exists, and it was time to purchase the coveted flag.) and a couple’s massage (hence why I requested he spend virtually nothing on me – I’d taken care of us!).

After work, it was time for a glass of wine and good conversation on the couch (actually, I made Chad sit with me on the LOVE seat, since it was Valentine’s Day and all) before heading off to our dinner reservation.

Side note – I was really excited to get a dinner reservation on Valentine’s Day at 6:30 p.m. when I didn’t even request said reservation until the day before. Chad was supposed to work on Tuesday, but Monday’s snow meant he had to go to work at 4:30 a.m. and as a reward, he got Tuesday and Wednesday off. Thus, we were actually able to go out for Valentine’s Day!

First MARRIED Valentine's Day!!

We arrived at Papa Sushi for a hibachi dinner (we love hibachi). The sushi bar side of the restaurant was PACKED – not an open seat, and very loud and chaotic, with waiters running around like chickens with their heads cut off. The hibachi side, however, was completely empty! What I thought would be a “group date” style outing turned into a VIP-style dinner, as Chad and I were the only people at the hibachi table. We were also seated near a live piano player, so it felt very romantic – it was a nice surprise! We had great service (being the only people on that side of the restaurant) and walked out with a very modest Valentine’s Day tab – exactly $50 for steak, shrimp and dessert, and including a very generous tip for our awesome waiter. As an added bonus, I was given a single long-stem red rose after dinner, just like on our first date!

So romantic :)

Then it was back home for some couch snuggling and movie watching. You’d think we’d watch a romantic comedy or love story of some sort – NOPE! We opted for our favorite movie, “Liar, Liar,” and quoted along with every word throughout the flick. It’s a favorite past time – don’t judge!

All in all, it was a GREAT Valentine’s Day – and today marks 7 months of being married! I know, 7 months is a random thing to get excited about, but we met 07/07/07, so 7’s are kind of our “thing.” We’ve already said that for our 7th wedding anniversary, we’re going to go/do something very nice – while most people would celebrate the 5th or 10th year milestone, we like to shake it up :)