us II

More on what makes us tick!

  • We love music. Both of us. It is not unusual for Christian worship to be playing in the living room, 80’s rock-and-roll in my office and Christian hard-rock in Adam’s office. All at the same time. Throw in a little bit of Beatles, Bob Marley and IZ and we are happy, happy happy. We usually have spa-like music (think running water from a river-type of music) playing on pandora while reading before bed at night to wind down from the day.
  • Our nieces and nephews have been perhaps the biggest thing in our lives for well-over a decade. Aside from occasionally traveling by ourselves, our time has been spent going to football, basketball, and volleyball games, even a little track and a few plays here and there. Throw in a graduation or five and we have enjoyed watching these little people become big people.
  • There are perhaps two things that we are most proud of. First, how successful my baby brother (AKA Boy) is as we like to think that we played a (teeny) role in helping him become who he is. Secondly, we are very proud of the financial strides we have made in the past five years. This is big for us. Really big. We used to be credit-card people. That is a thing of the past and we are very proud of this.
  • We don’t have TV. Well, we have lots of TVs in the house (exercise room, living room, our bedroom) but do not have cable. This is something we started several years back after we realized that we would just sit and stare at the TV, doing nothing with ourselves. For a few years we would still get cable from August to February so we could watch football but this year we didn’t even do that. I WILL admit….it sucks not being able to watch football right now. We do watch shows or movies on netflix or vudu, though so we are unfortunately not completely disconnected!
  • We love to garden together. We never had a garden until we moved to our current home where we started above-ground square foot gardening and we have loved it! We mostly do it all together, including canning. We’ve canned peaches, stewed tomatoes, pizza sauce, spaghetti sauce and pickles. Every year we put up carrots, peas and corn and store our potatoes in the crawl space for the winter.
  • We love to work on our home. Whether it is completely repainting a room a different color together or making projects together. We are a good combo. Adam does the sewing and sawing, I do the putting-together of things.
  • We flirt. Adam more than me. With each other, of course!! Adam is very grabby and teases me relentlessly. I love that guy.
  • We sleep with a box fan. This is something Adam “brought” to the marriage but is a staple now. Whenever we travel (even in Mexico!) we have our taxi take us to a walmart or somewhere similar to get a box fan on the way to our hotel. We finally smartened up and now keep a box fan in our car for when we travel that way. I can’t tell you how many box fans we have bought over the years because we “forgot” to bring one. I think we have at least 5 or 6 of them in storage! Every night when I turn the fan on Adam says it’s “the best sound in the world!”.

 

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us

I’ve been thinking about the things that make Adam and I us. What has made our marriage be as strong and awesome as it is after over 18 years? What makes “us” tick.

Things you may or may not know about us:

  • We both know every (I mean EVERY) line to National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation and we often use it casually in our everyday discussions. “I don’t knoooow, Margo” or “bend over and I’ll show ya” are both classics.
  • We own a sign-repair company (the kind of digital signs you see at gas stations, malls, schools etc). We were blessed with a tremendous opportunity almost two years ago and purchased EDS/SignCo-a company Adam had worked for off and on for many years. This is (for the most part) Adam’s baby but I have learned more and more the past year and now help with much of the billing, paper-work, ordering, etc.
  • We sleep in our own beds. Ha! I am a horrible sleeper and there are nights that Adam is very busy in his sleep (not too long ago he dreamed he was running on ice…literally). Did you know that two twin XL mattresses=king? Well, they do.
  • Adam proposed to me in 1994 at Dumb and Dumber. Well, not literally. He took me to a nice dinner and proposed at the restaurant and after we went to the movie. The lines from this movie are also commonly used in our home day-to-day. And, yes we did see the sequel a couple of months ago and boy was it disappointing!
  • Our first date was on March 10, 1992.
  • SHMILY: For one of our first anniversaries we received the book Night Light: A Devotional for Couples by James Dobson as a gift and SHMILY (See How Much I Love You) was mentioned. We embraced it and it has been “our thing” ever since. From emails, love-letters or chicken-scratched notes, almost everything we have ever given one another says SHMILY. (Last year I found an artist on Etsy that made me the SHMILY art you can see in the upper right corner on this wall in our happy room).IMG_5447
  • We are healthy wanna-be’s. We eat only organic, free-range, hormone free meat, milk and eggs and try to purchase all of our other food organically also. We don’t buy canned goods with BPA in the lining and do not drink out of plastic containers, nor have anything plastic in our kitchen actually. On the flip-side, we are both overweight and love to eat out! Go figure.
  • We are huge animal lovers. We would do anything for our fur babies and we have. We’ve done CPR on a cat on the way to the Hospital (and did revive him for a brief time) and tried to save our first love, Hastings (a border collie that we got when we first were married). Hastings had a pulmonary embolus and we sped the 60 miles to the nearest Animal ER/Hospital before we lost her. We watched while they did CPR and did labs, EKGs, etc on her but were unable to save her. We both remember seeing her eyes right before they closed for the last time. Years ago we paid for our kitty Corona (Miss Corona Barona!) to have a root canal (I’m serious). She was our 20-year old that we had to put down last spring for cancer in her airway. Boy, we loved that old gal. We once had a beautiful orange cat that had renal failure from getting into some lillies that we literally gave IV fluids to for days at home trying to save his little kidneys. Mr. Pepper, our 18 year-old siamese had an over-active thyroid about ten years ago and we sent him to K-State for radioactive treatment. Again, I am serious. Ha! He had to stay there for several weeks under quarantine before we were allowed to go pick him up. We have cared for this same old guy since May when he suffered a stroke. He is blind and deaf and loving life now but it has and still is hard-work for us to care for him. We love him so. Two of our cats are buried on my Father’s property in Montana (both with their own headstones!) and our beautiful Hastings and other cats are buried on Adam’s parent’s property in Mississippi-all in oak boxes lined with velvet that Adam made for them. Yes, we are well-experienced at shipping our animals on dry-ice. Weird, we know. I work with a woman who often says that when she dies she wants to come back as one of  our pets. Not a bad idea at all.

Check back tomorrow for more!

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feeling fault

We had barely turned 20 years old when we were married in 1996. We had to sneak a bottle of champagne in our luggage to take on our honeymoon…..our honeymoon at Disneyland, that is! Adam wanted to start a family right away. The guy loves children. I’d like to think that I am special to all of our nieces and nephews but I KNOW he is. He plays with them, gets down at their level. And, he has the patience of a saint! To this day when I see a niece or nephew one of their first questions is ALWAYS “Is Uncle Adam here?”.

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I wanted to go to school. In high school my goals were not terribly steep, although they always included some college at least. I thought I would go to a local community college and be an LPN. I had a phenomenal English teacher in one of my AP classes that showed me I could go further. She encouraged me to go to a larger school and maybe be an RN. I would say I caught the “bug” of wanting to go way further in my education when I was awarded a Presidential Scholarship for MSU. It was AH-MAZING. My bachelor’s degree was going to be completely paid for! We married just before my third year of college. I was not about to mess up my plans with a baby! My OCDism would NOT allow it! As my family knows, I have always been a “planner”, and I mean I plan EVERY. LITTLE. THING. Having a baby was simply not yet in my plans.

Another “bug” hit me right after we got married, though and that was my love for babies. I saw my very first vaginal birth while in nursing school and was in absolute awe of the entire process. Working on our adoption profile, we have been digging through old photo albums and look what we found! The first baby I had ever seen born. Look at how young (and skinny!) I was. Wow.

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When I started working on my Master’s degree I was the youngest person ever to enroll in the Family Nurse Practitioner program at Creighton University. Back than (gah-that sounds eons ago!), it was unheard of for a young RN to become an NP as it was mostly women in their 40s and 50s going back to school. I thrived. I loved it. I graduated 2nd in my class. Again, Adam was ready for a baby. You’d think that then would have been the perfect time, right? Not so. I still wasn’t ready. My gosh, I had just spent seven years in school and I was loving my newly-found freedom. I had (way too much) fun for about 18 months-I actually went to parties and traveled, things that most “normal college” kids do but I never allowed myself to do as I was too busy with “my plans” of go, go go!

In 2003, the beauty of being a Family Nurse Practitioner came to reality for me. I joined a busy family practice and was offered the opportunity to start obstetrics. Shortly after joining this practice, the MD I worked with didn’t make it to the hospital in time and I delivered my first baby in November, 2003 (someone had to catch it, amIright?!). I remember shaking afterwards. It was terrifying and wonderful at the same time. Later, I was given an envelope with this Polaroid photo that the nurse’s had taken for me.

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Following this was a seven-year whirlwind of family practice. I saw everything. I took care of pregnant women, labored with them and helped with or delivered many babies. I saw my share of babes with problems but thrived on researching the best way to care for these kids and finding out the best specialists for them to see. I watched these kids grow up, doing their kindergarten physicals and so on. My time here was full. I worked many hours and honestly did not have time to even really think about slowing down to have a baby….yet. By this time, we had been married for well over a decade and had our routine. We had pets but otherwise, came and go as we wanted. We traveled, spent money when we wanted to, loved on my baby brother (aka boy) and spoiled our nieces and nephews to pieces. To this day, I am so thankful for the time I spent in this community. Every Mama that ever came to me gave me a gift. Her trust; and I loved her and her family for that.

In 2010 I needed to slow down. Simply work less; no longer cover the ER, etc so we moved to a community closer to my Sister and her six kids. What a blessing to be closer to them! Working normal hours, Monday through Friday allowed me to actually envision having a baby. We bought an awesome home and set aside a room as a nursery, fondly calling it “the baby’s room” for the next 4 years. And, we filled that room with every single little thing a baby could ever need. Friends and my Sister were amazing to us, giving us their “gently-used” baby items knowing we were gearing up and getting’ ready! A crib, car seat, stroller, swings, bouncers, breast-pumps, exersaucers, you name it….we probably had at least two!

We were ready.

In hindsight, I have questioned myself every day since I lost my first baby. I question my decision to wait. If I had agreed to start a family in the beginning years of our marriage as my amazing Husband wanted, would it have worked. Did I wait too long? Are my eggs too old? Maybe I did this. I caused this. My gosh, my Husband….this man that I love more than any earthly thing, deserves to be a Daddy and I messed it up for him. He could be with any other woman and have a baby. It’s me. My body is the one that isn’t working. The guilt is suffocating.

But.

I know better. I know that my Husband loves me more than anything also and that I am who he wants. I also know that my God knew these last three years were going to be exactly the way they were all along. He knew I would be typing this exact blog post. Perhaps we would have had a successful pregnancy but also perhaps our child may have been ill, I may have not made it through the pregnancy (this happens), or maybe my depression would have gotten out of control. I actually wasn’t diagnosed with depression until when my Mom was very sick in 2003 but looking back, I likely had it off and on for years. Depression during pregnancy and postpartum depression is the most common complication of pregnancy. A fact, many do not realize. I could have become suicidal, for all I know.

I simply know that God has and always has had a plan for Adam and I.

 

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distraction

We have filled our weekend with distractions and are glad for it. We went to our 15th (!) Cirque Du Soleil show yesterday, Dralion. While the travel shows are not as exciting as the resident shows we have seen in NYC, Orlando and Vegas we are still always amazed at the talent and music. And, we are so thankful to have something like this to go to in rural America!

IMG_20141207_132601 1206141554We are still riding the high from being able to actually successfully use these!

Usually EVERYthing in the store is listed in the fine print and these coupons are useless!

Usually EVERYthing in the store is listed in the fine print and these coupons are useless!

Sometimes I just stop and stare at this old dude. At 18, he sure is awesome, considering he is blind and deaf from a stroke in May. I love how he still walks along the walls to find his way and always seems to find the perfect place to sunbathe….

IMG_20141207_144743Occasionally if we have a distance to drive when we fill up on gas we’ll get a few lottery tickets to pass the time in the car. This was a nice treat!

IMG_20141207_151704We love Hy-Vee and each time we go we do two things. We pick out a new (to us) cheese to try (word to the wise….always check the exp dates; they aren’t the best about pulling them when expired) and we pick out a fruit we have never tried. Oh, and the BEST part of our trip to Hy-Vee this week is our 63 cents off of each gallon of gas the next time we fill up-now, that is like winning the lottery.

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Buddha's Hand. From Asia, it is a citrus fruit and it kind of sounds like it is used for it's smell and to look at mostly. It actually smells like a lemon....

Buddha’s Hand. From Asia, it is a citrus fruit and it kind of sounds like it is used for it’s smell and to look at mostly. It actually smells like a lemon….

Our happy room. We refer to this (my office/craft/project room) as our happy room. Our home is full of oak and beautiful….but sometimes you like bright and white and that is here. Sometimes we’ll just sit and visit in here with the dogs.

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I am thankful we laughed a little yesterday and loved on one another during our “date day” and that just 5 days after losing our babe we are somehow able to still see some beauty around us.

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