Tuesday, June 30, 2009

For Women Only

Okay, so I'm still reading "The Power of a Praying Wife." It's taking me awhile, because I keep reading other books at the same time! For example, I bought the couple's pack of the books "For Women Only" and "For Men Only" at a Barnes and Noble in Columbus last Friday. I started the book on the way home from Columbus, and finished it on Sunday night. I've already had 3 or 4 people ask if they could borrow it, and my sister is currently reading my copy.

The book is about MEN. And why they are so weird. Just kidding. But why they sometimes seem weird to US. Shaunti Feldhahn, the author of "For Women Only" did a survey of thousands of men for a novel she was writing. And the results were so shocking to her, she decided to write a book on her findings. I was shocked as well by some of the things I learned from reading this book. And the way I look at Luke and other males has changed completely as well.

Just some examples of some things I learned from reading this book are:
1. Men would rather be respected than loved
2. Men are very insecure almost all the time, but try to hide it!
3. Men don't just need sex. They need us to WANT them. And not just do it out of duty.
4. Men are visual. Okay, we all know this, but the way the author describes it makes it so much clearer. It really made me feel simpathetic.
5. Men love it when we try to look good for them.

If you want to know more, read the book. It's very short, and could probably even be read in one sitting. I highly recommend it for any woman. I feel like I understand Luke so much more now, and I've learned to treat him differently.

Shaunti Feldhahn has a "For Women Only" section on her website if you want to check it out. I spent awhile there after I read the book. And honestly, I'm reading "For Men Only" now, just because I'm curious! I usually read it while Luke is watching TV and I tell him about interesting or funny things in the book, because I know he probably won't read it himself! (ESPN Magazine is probably the most reading he likes to do!)
On another note, who is excited about the 4th of July??! I seriously didn't realize it was this weekend. Where is the time going this summer?! I'm spending the 4th at our friend Michael's house (Also, Max's house...the little Maltese I puppy-sat a few weeks ago :-)). There's going to be swimming and illegal fireworks and lots and lots of good food!! I'm excited, and trying to figure out what to make. I might make my Clark bars again, which I have since learned are ALSO called Buckeye Bars. I like that name better!

So next weekend is the 4th, the weekend after that is my anniversary...yay!!! I plan on spending part of the afternoon looking up fun ideas for our date night. And the weekend after that, we have planned a camping trip with some of our "married couple" friends. Luke has so many bachelor friends that we hang out with, sometimes it's fun to go out with couples too :-) So I'm excited! Especially since it will be our first chance to use our new tent that my parents got us as a wedding gift last year!

Have a great Tuesday! What are your plans for the 4th??

Monday, June 29, 2009

The Talk

A few weeks ago I wrote about my dream of being a stay-at-home-mom someday. I wrote that the only problem was that I was scared to approach Luke about the issue.

Well last night I couldn't stand it any longer. I HAD to get his input. For some reason, I was extremely nervous about telling him! But I sucked it up, and we had "the talk" at about 10:00 last night. I was very honest with Luke. I told him that I don't want to teach. And I really haven't come out and told anyone except my mom that I have decided that teaching is not for me. And I'm embarrassed and ashamed that I don't like it, and don't feel naturally good at it. But God has given me such a desire to serve at home. I told Luke all of this. And you know guys....he just kind of nodded and didn't say much, which made me nervous!

I then told him that my absolute dream would be to be a stay at home mom. But I also said that when we have kids I wouldn't mind working part-time or from home either. His mom, for example, is a medical transcriptionist, and works from home. Also, I am interested in closed captioning or broadcast captioning. Those are both jobs that I could do from home. I'm trying to look for an area where I could work at home that wouldn't cost too much as far as schooling goes! I'm going to do lots of research and crunch lots of numbers today to try to find out where I want to go with this.

Anyway, I closed by asking Luke whether he'd want me to make more money as a teacher, but have more school loans and not be there for our kids as much. Or if he'd want me to make a little bit less money, have less school loans, and be there for our kids more. And he looked me in the eye, and said "Whatever you want. It's your life, and if you don't want to teach, then I don't want you to teach." He basically said he would be happy with whatever I chose. It made me feel so good to know that he supports me no matter what. (But at the same time I was hoping he could give more input to help make my decision!) But I think he really respects the fact that I want to put our home and our children first. I think all men have an innate need to provide for the family, and women have an innate need to nurture. And I think that's why we're both so happy with this plan!

Okay, so where does that leave us? Well I have to make some decisions quickly. I will definitely be substitute teaching this coming fall. Also, I will probably either be going to a local college for broadcast captioning (I could do that online!) or training at home to become a medical transcriptionist. And as soon as I'm certified in one of those things, I will pursue a job in that area instead of subbing. Mostly because I could make more money as a transcriptionist or broadcast captioner than sub. teaching.

If I go the med. transcriptionist route, I can do what my mother-in-law did and order all the study materials and teach myself at home. It is a self-paced program, but I believe you have a maximum of 18 months to complete the program. And if I go the broadcast captioning route, I would have to go back to school for an associates degree, which would take 2 years. Since Luke and I have decided to start "trying" in 3 years, I better hurry and decide and get signed up for classes!

And finally, on a side note, I have some advice for anyone that's interested! Luke and I are so lucky that the opportunity to own apartments just fell into our laps. Can I just say that it's a great investment! The rent money pretty much covers our mortgage payment and insurance every month (as long as both apartments are filled). Because of the money we make from that, it takes a little bit of the financial burden off of me so that I'll be able to do a part-time job or take some time off when our kids are very young. It's a big responsibility, and it's definitely important to have a lot of money saved up in case of emergencies. But if you do it responsibly, it is SUCH a great investment in your future! When Luke and I are retired and our rental house is paid off, we will own a house which we could sell at any time (we will be living somewhere else by then, hopefully!) and we will still be getting the rent money every month as long as we don't sell it. I would highly recommend buying a rental property if you are able. Especially if you are able to live in one of the units. If you have any questions about the process of buying, owning, or taking care of a rental, please feel free to write me a comment or send an email my way! Not sure why I felt compelled to write that, but I just felt like sharing :-)

Okay, now I must get to work! This week is project:landscaping at the Wallace household, and I'm kicking off the project today. So have a fabulous Monday!

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Gone Fishin'

After spending the entire day at my parents' pool yesterday, here's how we spent our evening after cooking hot dogs over a fire at my aunt and uncle's house/pond:

(Please don't be fooled and think that I actually touched a worm, minnow or a big fish. I don't fish. I can't even force myself to touch the gross stuff...I know, I'm a wuss :-P I just sat around the fire talking and watching others fish while snapping pictures all evening :-))

[sigh] sweet, sweet summertime :-)
Me and LukeMy sister and JC
CousinsSo it was a fun night. And today Luke and I are going to a picnic with some family & friends, and then he has two softball games this evening. But I'm thinking it looks like rain, so we may be hanging out at home instead of going to the softball games. Which is fine with me...I wouldn't mind being at home and having some time to catch up on things since we've been gone all weekend!

And I'm sorry that you're probably pictured-out with my posts lately! I just can't resist. Summer is too much fun! But things should slow down a little bit this week, and I'm excited because my house is a DISASTER AREA right now!!

Friday, June 26, 2009


Today was our Columbus trip. Luke took the day off work (he was able to because of his comp. time). We just headed down this morning and spent the day together. I think it is so important for couples to escape their every day routine and get out every once in awhile. Even if it is just for the day. I feel like we reconnected today, and it was nice :-)

Columbus is about 2.5 hours from us, and we had a little bit of an inconvenience on the way. Luke's side view mirror on the passenger side just kind of fell off on the way so that it was hanging by some wires. We pulled off on an exit and luckily found a hardware store right away. Luke bought some "Gorilla Tape" and we rocked it hillbilly for the rest of the day. lol...it did look pretty funny taped on there. And he had to reattach it 3 or 4 times. But we had to do what we had to do!

Other than the mirror issue, it was a perfect day! We spent the entire day at Easton, a huge, ritzy shopping complex. The IMAX theater was even inside of Easton.

When we got to Columbus we immediately ate lunch at Max and Ermas. I got the tortilla burger and it was absolutely delicious. Unfortunately I was unable to eat much more than half of my meal. Can I just say that portion sizes are a little out of control at restaurants these days?!

After lunch we shopped a lot. There are lots of fun places to shop at Easton, but most of them are pretty expensive! The only things Luke bought were OSU swimming trunks and a money clip at Buckeye Corner, his favorite store. And I found a book I've been wanting at Barnes and Noble: "For Women Only" by Shaunti Feldhahn. It's all about how men think and why they do the things that they do. I read half of it on the way home, and feel like I've learned so much already! But that's a whole other post for another time :-)

At 5:00 it was finally time for Transformers 2 at the IMAX theater. I had never been to an IMAX theater for a regular movie before, and it was awesome! The surround sound was amazing, and the picture was so clear! It reached from the floor to the ceiling. It was so much fun, and I told Luke it will be hard to watch a movie at a regular theater after today. If you've never seen a movie in IMAX, you should really go sometime!

After the movie we headed home, and got some ice cream on the way. It was such a fun day. I'm glad we took a time out from our routine to spend the day together :-)

Here are some pictures from our little day trip:
Luke's dream would be to own this TV. Too bad we don't have an extra $20,000 laying around. Seriously. That's how much it really cost. CRAZY! It was HUGE, thoughHow sweet is this car??

At Max and Ermas. Yes, he's making a weird face on purpose. He doesn't like my obsession with taking picturesThis is his "stop taking pictures!" face. In Buckeye Corner. His shirt is almost like camouflage in this store ;-)
The movie theater at Easton was very nice! I definitely want to go back again sometime
Tried to take a picture without a flash in the theater before the movie. It didn't work, so I edited it to try to make the blurriness look like it was on purpose :-PGoodnight! I'm headed to bed. I've got a long day out by the pool with my family planned for tomorrow ;-)


Thursday, June 25, 2009

Summer Fun

I had to post a few pictures that I took yesterday, because I just thought they were too cute. It's been creeping past 90 degrees the past two days. Yesterday, I took advantage of my parents' pool. While I was there, we had a few visitors. My best friend Rachel and her husband Jared came. And Lexie, their Golden Retriever. Yes, my mom said Lexie could cool down in the pool. Gross? Maybe. But what are chemicals and a filter for?? lol...just thought these were too cute :-)

Top Five

Today was my last day of helping at VBS. I won't be able to go tomorrow, because Luke and I are taking a day trip to Columbus. Which I'm super excited about!!

When you're working with a group of 40-50 preschoolers all week, fun things happen. So here is a list of my favorite things that happened this year

Top Five 2009 VBS Memories
5. Seeing the smiling faces of so many adorable kids every day!
4. Having a classroom in THE ONLY wing of the church with no air conditioning. On a week with high 80s, low 90s temperatures.
3. Breaking up a fight that ensued during snack time over whether chocolate or white chocolate chips are better. It got pretty heated.
2. Raegan's smiling face and crazy laughter....read more about him here:
1. The games were held outside of my classroom, and I could see and hear everything out there. Today a little boy stood in the sandbox where they were playing a game, looked around, and just started peeing. And that would have to be the most memorable moment from this year!

So it's been fun, but exhausting! I'm ready to head out tomorrow. Luke and I are shopping all morning and hopefully eating at a nice restaurant, and then going to see Transformers at an IMAX theater. Luke is a little more excited about that last part than I am :-P

AND it's almost official that we are going on vacation to Virginia Beach in August. So yay for a somewhat last minute (for us, anyway) trip to the ocean during a summer that I did not think I would be able to go :-D

Have a fabulous Thursday, and I hope you can beat the heat!! I refuse to complain about it though. If you read ANY of my posts in the winter, I'm sure you know how much I loathe the cold temperatures. I would take 90 degrees over 10 degrees any day!

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Wedding Wednesday: The Details

I think the little details are what makes a wedding or reception special. I'm lucky to have a mother who was a florist, and a very creative family! And almost 100% of the details were partially or completely homemade or handmade. It was a money saver, but certainly took a lot more hands-on work!

Detail #1: The Invitations
We ordered my invitation paper online, but we spent an ENTIRE Sunday after church designing them and figuring out the wording. Then it probably took a total of 8 or 10 hours to print them, stuff them, tie the bows, and write the addresses on the envelopes. With lots of people working different "shifts." I was very proud of them, though, and got so many compliments! All the hard work was well worth it.Detail #2: The Flowers
My mom did all of my flowers for the wedding. My colors were pink and brown. I used lots of pink lilies. My mom made me a cascading bouquet. I'm not joking when I say it was so heavy I could barely hold it up. But all the flowers were beautiful, and she spent lots of time on them!! She had a little help from my Aunt Beth and grandpa.
My ginormous Bouquet :-P (and shoes)
Bridal Party Bouquets
She also did the flowers on stage and the unity candle bouquet
And ALL the flowers at the reception. These are the centerpieces.
Detail #3: The Cake
Luke's grandma made our cake. It was her gift to us. It turned out beautiful! It was pretty simple, and we just decorated it with flowers. I actually was so full and nervous that I didn't get to try a piece! But the top layer is waiting for us in my mom's freezer. We get to eat it in a few weeks on our 1 year anniversary!Also, we made a groom's cake! I baked the cake, and Julie decorated. It was her special little gift to Luke. Unfortunately, somebody just dumped it at the reception because they thought we wouldn't want it. Luke was disappointed that he didn't get to eat it :-P
Detail #4: The card box
It was a joint effort between my mom and Julie to make the card box. I just wanted it to look pink, brown and pretty. And here's what they came up with. Too cute! It's still sitting in my closet, and I wish I had a need for it. I think my mom should charge people to rent it out.
Detail #5: The Reception Decor My reception hall was chosen because it was big enough to hold all of my guests with room to spare, there was a huge dance floor, and the food was phenomenal. It was not the prettiest place in the world, however. My mom kept telling me that it really doesn't matter what a place looks like...with the right touches ANY hall could be beautiful. I have to admit that I was nervous at first, and didn't really believe her. I was proven wrong, though! It ended up being so beautiful! The head chef asked my mom for her card so he could refer her to people. He said he had never seen the place looking so nice before! My mom just laughed and said she did NOT have a card, and that she'd been in the wedding business for a long time when she was a florist, and had no desire to go back. lol. But I'm glad she did my wedding! Here are some random pictures of the hall. When I walked in at the reception, it literally took my breath away. I wish I could relive that night!!

Rachel is standing by the cake table back there. The hall just had that thing hanging from the ceiling, with no tulle or lights hanging down from the corners. Mom did that, and put lights hanging down behind the sheer table cloth. The people that worked there thought it looked great, and asked Mom if they could keep it up :-)
Card/gift tableHead Table it looked so awesome when all the lights were dim at the reception!!
Head Table DetailsClose up of a table
Okay, story time. I paid a lot extra for the chair covers in the hall, because their chairs were so ugly!!! I also wanted to put a simple bow made out of brown tulle one each chair. Well that ended up being a pain. Me, Julie, and JC got that job on Thursday. Julie and JC were quickly throwing the bows together. I was maticulously making sure each bow was exactly the same, and PERFECT. I went around and fixed all of Julie and JC's bows as well as tying half of them myself. My awesome father went out and bought some Diet Coke and mini Reese's Cups (my 2 favorite things!) for me that day, because he could tell I was stressed! lol...the funny thing is, I finally got them all perfect after working alllll day. But by the time the wedding party got to the hall on Saturday after pictures, the guests had been there for awhile and all the bows were crooked and even falling off of the chairs. I would skip the brown bows next time!!!!I tried to sneakily go behind them and fix them when they weren't looking. But I think Julie caught on pretty quickly and took a picture of me in the act :-P
They turned out pretty perftect, though!
I guess all of our hard work paid off...it looks like everyone had a pretty good time!
Join me next week for "Wedding Wednesday: The Catastrophes!"