All About a Paper Anniversary

This past Sunday (Friday, August 19, 2012) Matt and I celebrated our first anniversary together! Just as any newly wedded couple would be, we had been looking forward to this special date all year long. To have been married for 365 days is no easy feat, and to be happily married is an even more difficult one. So naturally, we felt that a celebration was well deserved. The only issue was life. Life is demanding. Life is time constraining. Life is financially restricted, just to name a few. These (and much much more) all apply to our life right now since we are so young, married and ,simply put, just starting life together.
Honestly, up until a few days before our anniversary we had no clue what we were going to do to commemorate it. All we truly knew was that Matt had been able to request time off work so that we could be together the entire weekend. Which, in our eyes, is all you really need to remember and make an anniversary special. That being said, this was a big deal for us since he has essential just begun his career at UPS as well as just received his first promotion only a couple weeks prior. On top of that he has been working a second job since UPS is only giving him part time right now, and so that I can focus on school full time for the next year as my program will be very intense. Therefore, to be able to just spend some quality time together, even if that meant just staying home, was what we were both really looking forward to.
We had essentially decided that we were just going to hang around Lexington and do all the fun things that the tourist’s do, when we received an email from Livingsocial about a 2 night stay in a secluded cabin in the Smokey Mountains that included all the meals and a cooking class for two at a near by bed and breakfast, which owned the cabin rental company. The price was right (we actually ended up spending less going there then we would have if we stayed in town!!) and the distance was only a four hour drive from our home. So we called and booked the deal, packed up our bags, and headed for the mountain tops!
Everything from the time spent on the road together (side note: we love road trips!), to the lone cabin and mountain ridge we had all to ourselves, to the wonderful inn keeper, named Janice, who made us feel right at home each and every morning was straight out of a dream. We had such a peaceful and relaxing stay while we were there that we promised to come back next year, or whenever we needed a quick get away from the hustle and bustle of life. In our opinion, it was most definitely a God thing. It was not something that we could have seen coming on our own, but rather a situation where everything seemed to line up and therefore was huge blessing from our heavenly father.
Much Love

P.S. Here are a few pics from our trip:

Kicked off the trip with the traditional Kracker Barrel stop for lunch.
Matt playing the “Jump All but One” game. Probably his favorite thing to do when we go there.
Matt building a fire.
 He did it!!!
Cheesy heart shaped Jacuzzi tub lol
Playing a game we invented called “Taffy Roulette”
 Making S’mores!.. Yes, I eat my marshmallows burnt.
 Morning Coffee
 Smokey Mountain View
 The mountain stream that we followed on our trail
 We hiked Big Creek Trail
Found our own trail to a pretty part of a near by river
Taking a break by the stream
 Just finished cliff jumping at Midnight Hole!!
 Mouse Creek Falls
Toes dangling over the edge!
On the Gatlinburg Sky Lift
Gatlinburg view from the top
 We found our puppy Kirby!
 Bought more Taffy for our game!
 The Pepper Palace, a store dedicated to all things hot!
 Found some hot sauce named after me in the store!
 Miniature school house
 The journals that are left in each cabin for the couples who stay there to write a little departing note in. We had such a fun time reading all of the entries!
Our Cabin
 Mountain Berry
 Learning how to make apple pie from scratch
 Our apple pie!
 With Paul and Patricia, the other couple that we got to take the cooking class with. They were so much fun to meet and hang out with.
 Traditional Pomeroy D.Q stop! No family vacation is truly complete without it 🙂
 At our favorite restaurant back in Lexington called “El Rancho Tapatio” for our anniversary dinner
 Following in traditions footsteps, about to eat the top of our wedding cake!
 It was just as yummy (if not more so) as it was a whole year ago!

Beginning a Blog

To be quite honest, blogging has always been something that I have enjoyed as a spectator, but never as a participant. I love to read, especially when it’s based on a content that is going to teach me something (shout out to the nonfiction and self help books that frequent my library card).  And since I am an admitted people person this goes even further if it’s going to be written by, or about, someone that I find interesting, admire or is in my life. So blogs are kinda right up my ally as far as reading material goes, but I never really

considered writing one of my own until this past year when I found myself newly married to the man of my dream (big sigh!). As my husband, Matt, and I braved our way down a path that many have been down before us (marriage in general) but at the same time no one has taken except us (our own marriage) we quickly learned that support from other christian married couples is key. Having others travel that road with you to get advice from, listen to and share experiences with is something so crucial to both spouses well being, as a whole and as individuals.
 Newly married and living in Lexington, KY all by ourselves we began reaching out and getting active in our church.Maybe it’s also because of the stage of life that I find myself in, but the books that had been jumping out to me as well were about marriage, relationships and family. I also started browsing the web to begin looking up blogs and other resources about the same topics, and what I found was few and far between. The material that I did find though, has brought so much joy, hope and perspective to my own life and marriage that I resolved to begin my own blog, believing that maybe our stories could do the same for another young married couple out there. 
There was a tiny problem though… For as much as an extrovert as I am, I am also a considerably private and cautious person. Unless you are one of my very nearest and dearest, in terms of friends and family, I will not divulge the deepest inner workings of my life to you. Quite frankly, the only ones who ever truly hear about any issues I am having in my life, and how I am feeling about them, is my God, my husband and my diary. Basically, to start up this online link into my personal life was (and still is) a big deal for me. I don’t know how people will take what I have to say; if they will agree or disagree. The world can be such a critical place, and I am a very sensitive and fragile person. But I want to be a blessing to others just as others have been to me. And I know that through my God I can have the strength to stand for what I believe in, and share our tales of what we go through that someone else may be able relate; the beautiful and the ugly. 
So this is a personal step of faith. To my readers, I hope you find encouragement and realization that you are not alone. That whatever you might think is not normal in your life, your relationships, or your marriage is the exactly opposite.. completely 100% normal! 🙂 
Much love,