Tuesday, December 29, 2009

That's What Friends are For Part 3

It's been a couple of weeks since an installment about our amazing wedding party!  We have four married couples in our wedding party and I'm excited that tonight I get to introduce two of them at the same time...

Meet Jamie Leighann:

Jamie Leighann came in to my life with a BANG!  It was summer of 2000--Jamie had just graduated high school and I had just joined The Oaks and was at my first youth camp.  I was shy and quiet (I know hard to imagine).  Jamie was my bunkmate and when I asked her to 'toss' me my bible she attempted to fake a toss which resulted in my bible flying from the cover and smacking me in the face.  Although Jamie apologized profusely I just laughed, it was, in the end, what brought me out of my shell.  Jamie and I also quickly bonded over the situation and became good friends.  When Zach saw her picture on the refrigerator at our house and told me he would marry her, I said 'I don't think so.'  I had no idea what God had intended for my life and Jamie's.  Jamie has become one of my very dearest friends.  She has brought much joy to my life and provided me with constant friendship and love over the last nearly 10 years of life.  I could not imagine Jamie Leigh Ann not being in my life and my family's life and I'm thankful for the way God orchestrates things together.  Jamie is now my family--I was honored to stand with her on her wedding day and will be more than blessed and honored to have her standing with me in April.  :)

I bet you can't guess which groomsman I'm about to introduce:

Meet Zachary (fyi I don't have a pic of him and Chad so I figured I'd use the one of me, Zach, and Erick from Zach's rehearsal dinner):

Zach is one of my amazing big brothers.  He use to pick on me like crazy in high school but is now one of my best buds.  He is married to the lovely woman I spke of above!  Zach and Chad have really hit it off and share a lot of interests such as golf!  Chad was, at one time, very intimidated by Zach but has made mention several times of how grateful he is to have a good relationship with my brother!  I'm also thankful for this relationship and look forward to seeing how our friendships will continue to grow!

On the next installment of That's What Friends are For:  Erick (oldest bro) and Abby!

Love to all, I hope you are all excited about the new year ahead, I know I am!!

Monday, December 28, 2009

Full Steam Ahead...

After a very blessed week of Christmas, Chad and I spent most of Sunday working on our wedding.  We are so excited that the wedding day is so quickly approaching but are also beginning to feel the crunch.  Yesterday we did, however, accomplish the following tasks:

- purchased sparklers for our exit
- purchased spray paint and ribbon to assemble flower girl baskets
- completed flowergirl baskets
- started on favors
- addressed invitations (with the exception of those who we do not have addresses for yet)

After yesterdays events I'm feeling pretty accomplished today.  Around 2:30 today I also got news that my wedding dress is in!  I'm a bit nervous about going to pick it up.  Not that it really changes anything but it sorta starts making everything really real, not that it has been 'fake' real before! 

We have proposed a revision for our Mason Jar design; here are a couple of pictures of a completed jar:

Tammy, my future mother-in-law has also completed the flower girl dresses (aside from the hem), here are some pictures of dresses:

We also completed the flower girl baskets last night that were originally gold baskets, here is a picture:

I think that's all the wedding updating I'll do for now...

Hope you have all had a blessed day!

Friday, December 25, 2009

Thursday, December 24, 2009

I'm Dreaming of a White Christmas...

In my entire life I have NEVER experienced a White Christmas...it appears that may all change.  It's been snowing most the day here in DFW and the temp is now under freezing with approximately 4 hours of snow expected....here are a few pics of the white scenes outside right now...

I hope each of you have a very blessed and Merry Christmas!  What a wonderful time of year to reflect on the Glory of our Lord and Savior!

Monday, December 21, 2009

My Disappearance

So, I was so 'gun-ho' on this blogging adventure and then I disappeared!  So sorry for the disappearance.  Last week I caught a nasty case of the flu and strep!  Needless to say I had a very rough go at it and barely lifted my head off the bed much less think of a blog post.

Stay stuned for more installments of the 'That's What Friend are For' series!  We have more wonderful people from the wedding party to introduce!

This blog will be rather short, it is merely meant to provide a short update and let you (the few who read) know where I've been.

Another post to come soon with pictures!

Merry Christmas!

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

That What Friends are For Part 2

As a continuation of this series of posts I will introduce two of Chad's groomsmen and one of my lovely ladies to get us up to date:

Meet David:

David is the 'attractive pre-teen camp counselor' mentioned in the previous post as well as Kayla's husband.  Although David has only known Chad a short while his friendship has become invaluable to him.  It wasn't long after Chad met David that he told me if we were to get married one day he would want David to be a groomsmen.  This, of course, warmed my heart immediately as David has been like a brother to me throughout much of my life.  David is steady and strong and full of great wisdom.  Did I also mention that David loves to talk?

Meet Jeremy:

Chad and Jeremy go way back and their parents homes are right around the corner from each other.  Jeremy has been a good friend to Chad and always offered a word of encouragement and his friendship without any expectations.  Jeremy is patient and kind and we are blessed that he will be a part of our wedding party in April!

Meet Jamielynn:

What can I say?  Jamielynn has been one of my dearest and best friends throughout much of my life.  When I was in a time of my life where things were uncertain and I felt unloved, Jamie loved me just as she does now.  She took me in under her wing and became more that Erick's girlfirend--she became my sister long before a ring went on her finger or a wedding was held.  Jamielynn taught me so much about God's love and how to love people at such a young age.  I don't think I could possibly describe the impact she has had on my life in this short blog post.  Jamielynn brought out in me a deep love I had for music and never discouraged me even when I couldn't sing on pitch to save my life.  We attended countless concerts includinmg trips to the The Door and celebrate freedom.  We share many memories and have many memories to make.  It was such a pleasure and honor to be a bridesmaid in Jamielynn's wedding 10 years ago and I am thrilled that she, too, will be standing with me on that day! 

In just writing these posts the last two days I've realized that I have been more blessed than I deserve.  God is so good to provide us with friends and family who display His love to us so eloquently!

Monday, December 7, 2009

That's What Friends are For

Okay, so maybe I'm becoming a BIT addicted to this whole blog thing.  Being off work the past few days has probably assisted in the newly found addiction.  This will be installment 1.5 of the wedding party introductions!  Chad hasn't exactly signed up for this yet so I'll introduce his groomsmen for him.  :)

Growing up I never really thought I'd ever find a best friend.  I was always the 'third' friend.  You know the one that came along after.  Every time I thought I found a 'best' friends something would happen or they'd move away or you know it just never worked out.  In looking back I had probably tried too hard to find one person instead of letting God direct my steps even as a child and young adult.  That being said today, I have two best friends!  These ladies will both be honor attendants at my wedding and will be the subject of this blog!

Meet Kayla:

Kayla, or Kay-Baby, as my family affectionately calls her, came in to my life in third grade.  Our parents ALWAYS tried to force us in to being friends (they, of course, deny this).  Kayla and I played on a softball team together and also attended the same church.  We came to know each other better as the only two girls who wouldn't bang the walls and chant 'David David David' at the really attractive pre-teen camp counselor one year at camp.  Did I mention that Kayla is married to that same attractive pre-teen camp counselor?  Anyways, it wasn't until Jr. High our friendship started to blossom.  Towards the end of high school Kayla and I had become really good friends and her and David spent almost every Friday at my house.  When I went to college I was fearful of how our relationship may change but I had failed to recognize that Kayla and I both served a gracious God who knew that we needed one another in our lives.  God has used Kayla to bless my life in more ways than I can even express.  It was such an honor to be a part of her wedding day 7 years ago and to be at the hospital when her first child, Ava Joy, was born.  Kayla is a strong woman, she laughs at the future, she enjoys the present, loves her God, her husband, her precious daughter, her amazing family, and even the Ahlstedts!  I'm not quite certain what I'd do without Kayla by my side.  She has offered me sanity when life gets crazy and a place to cry when life gets hard but more than this, she has always directed me back to the truth which is the living God!  (On a side note she is also slightly responsible for me becoming a 'blogger')

Meet Staci:

Staci and I didn't meet until my Junrior year of college, however, I had certainly heard of 'the' Staci Thrasher!  A mutual friend of ours, Stephen, had always talked about the greatness of 'the Thrash' in reference to Staci.  I was so intimidatied to meet her based on the level of awesomeness she had clearly attained.  To my delight Staci lived up to every bit of the awesomeness I had heard of and then some.  Staci and I pretty instantly became friends but it took us a while to become roommates.  One day while laughing about something I'm sure was ridiculous Staci asked if I'd like to be her roommate I said 'yes' completely unaware of the friendship that was to blossom.  I had not had a lot of luck with pleasant roommate experiences throughout college but man did I have a GREAT experience my senior year.  Staci became not only a great roommate, but also one of my best friends.  As she was experiencing the newness of grad school and meeting Robert, I was experiencing the uneasiness of preparing for life after college.  We were able to spur one another on and encourage one another throughout our time as roommatess.  I am blessed and honored to have Staci as one of my dearest friends in this life.  She has supported me, encouraged me, triumphed with me and laughed with me through many ups and downs of life.  Her wisdom, intellect, self-discipline, faith and  love has always inspired me.  Throughout our friendship, Staci has always reminded me of the value that exists within me. I was blessed beyond measure to be her Maid of Honor, or as we put it MOH, on her wedding day in June 2008.  I cannot imagine Staci not being by my side on this special day.

Chad has one honor attendant so ladies and gentlemen (if any ready this), meet Joey:

Chad and Joey are more like brothers as they've told me!  Joey has also become one of my dear friends and his wife, Ashley, will also be a bridesmaid in our wedding.  Chad is delighted and honored that Joey will be standing by his side on April 17, 2010!

I think that's all I've got today!  You guys should thank Tarrant County for not selecting me to jury duty because that is the reason I'm getting this post done! 

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Going to the Chapel

Things I've discovered since August (okay, let's be honest since April):

Planning a wedding is:

More than anything, planning a wedding is full of little blessings along the way.  It is a time in your life when you realize you are more loved than you ever thought possible (and I'm not just speaking of the love between the groom and bride-to-be).  Above all, the love that I have been amazed by the most, is the love of the Father, my Heavenly Father.   "And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love. Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow—not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love.  No power in the sky above or in the earth below—indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord." Romans 8:38-39.

Wedding planning has been an adventure!  The church and reception site were selected and reserved prior to the ring going on my finger!  We'll be getting married at Mayfield Road Baptist Church and will be having the reception at the Shearton in the Plaza on the Hill (pictured below):

We are very excited that my AWESOME parents agreed to this location as it was our favorite site in the area!  Our colors are going to be ivory, black, and some green accents! Here are some of my picture inspirations:

The next two pictures are from TheKnot.com:

For my Bouquet

For Centerpieces at the Reception (we will be using Ivory Flower stock, Green Coffee Berries, and Stars of Bethlehem)

We worked on some mock up centerpieces a couple of months ago but I do not have those pictures on this computer so I will save those pics for another post!  I think this has sufficiently updated the world on wedding planning.  We are currently working on ordering invitations, finishing up bridesmaids gifts, finishing flower girl dresses (being made by my future mother-in-law) and still asking people to be a part of our special day!

Coming soon:  I think I'm going to be introducing my wedding party through a series of posts with reasons why they are each so important to us!  We are blessed to have so many friends and family that care so much!

I'll leave you with another AMAZING engagement picture:

Thursday, December 3, 2009

New Beginnings

Change.  It's something that isn't easy for me and something I avoid, ridiculously, at times.  When I was 18 I sobbed at my best friend's wedding because she was gettin' hitched and I was goin' to college.  Little did I know all that God had in store.  I think about the tears I've cried resisting change and the triumph felt on the other end when God's work has been accomplish.  I remember feeling ridiuclous and yet completely and utterly blessed. 

"The LORD your God is with you,
He is mighty to save.
He will take great delight in you,
He will quiet you with his love,
He will rejoice over you with singing."

Zephaniah 3:17

That being said, change is a coming, and already happening in many ways.  Although most who will see this blog know what I'm about to say, others may not and what's better on an introductory blog than a 'life update?'

In August 2008 Chad threw a softball at me.  In October 2008 he got my number.  In November 2008 we began dating and by February 2009 we knew God had brought us together for marriage.  On August 14, 2009 Chad asked me to be his wife and I happily said yes!  Here is a picture from the night we got engaged:

Two weeks after we got engaged we put in an offer on a home and on October 1, 2009 we closed on a precious first home in central Arlington.  Here's a picture of the outside of our home (prior to us owning it):


Since we bought this home we've taken joint custody of the home and our precious baby belle (that would be a dog, pictured below with her pups which generated the money for the down payment on the house!):

A few weeks ago we had the distinct blessing of spending some time in Bryan/College Station with some dear friends of ours!  Lynsey (Captured By Lyns Photography) took some beautiful engagement pictures and I am happy to share with you two of my favorites from the bunch:

With all this 'change' that is coming it is easy to become fearful but God's word is clear.  "For God did not give us a spirit of timidity, but a spirit of power, of love and of self-discipline." 2 Timothy 1:17  So, what do you do from here?  You stand, you walk, you listen, you ask, you seek, and your trust that the God of this universe holds you tightly and securely in His arms. 

With all the excitement in store over the next few months, I ask that you just pray God keeps our feet on the ground and our lives centered on Him.