Friday, August 24, 2012

4 years of wedded bliss

 Yesterday Mike and I celebrated our four year wedding anniversary. I feel the same way every time we celebrate an anniversary, "I can't believe it's been __ years!" Time continues to fly by and I continue to fall more in love with my husband every day. I love our marriage, we have really learned a lot about communication, trust and showing love for one another since we have been married.

I always look forward to celebrating our anniversary. I love thinking of creative ways to show Mike that I love him or plan a romantic dinner/date. This year was no different, the only problem was I was home sick with strep throat. Well I actually came down with strep on Saturday night and starting taking medicine Sunday. However, strep is not something that goes away in a day or two. It takes over a week to feel like you are back to normal again. So as our anniversary drew near I began to panic because I didn't have anything planned and I felt like just laying in bed with a good movie and box of tissues. But my love for Mike overcame and I searched the internet for some good ideas. I found one then set out to get everything I needed for it. This year I got Mike not one gift but 13! And I didn't spend a ton of money doing it either. I thought of things he mentioned he needed, or would eventually spend money to buy. On each gift I attached a note explaining why I got it for him. Then I wrapped all the gifts in pink and green (our wedding colors) and wrote a time at which he was to open that gift. Each time was on the 4's of the hour to commemorate our 4 years of marriage.

That morning before he left for work at 8:04 I gave him a card with a Robeks gift card in it (in the UK the traditional 4th year anniversary gift is fruit, so I figured Robeks smoothies counted as fruit.) It explained what he needed to do and told him the gifts were already in a box in his car. I was so excited each time he texted me telling me how much he liked his gift. 

 So what did I come up with for gifts, some were more creative than others, but I was pleased with them.
9:04 - Lent rollers because he hates getting to work and finding cat hair on him.
10:04 - His favorite granola bars, he can always use a mid morning snack.
11:04 - Message in a bottle. Mike and I were married at 10:30 so I thought I would give him a nice love letter around that time. I used an empty Martinelli bottle and put my love letter inside.
12:04 - Subway gift card, he works close to one and always goes there if he needs lunch.
1:04 - King size kit kat, his favorite candy bar for dessert
2:04 - Movie tickets that he can use to choose any movie he'd like to see, not hesitation from me.
3:04 -Tennis balls, all of his are loosing there bounce
4:04 - Toy football, he loves these and I figured he needed something at work he could toss around when he needed a quick break.
5:04 - Jar full of kit-kats - Who doesn't want a jar of their favorite treat at their desk?
6:04 - nail clippers, he is always asking me for mine so I got him his own pair.
7:04 - Tickets to the US Open. He opened these at dinner.

After work Mike picked me up and took me to a fancy dinner at Capitol Grill downtown. They even have valet parking which I love! I also loved that our table had confetti hearts on it and an anniversary card that all the servers had signed. The food was to die for, well I think it was at least. The big bummer is that my sinuses are so messed up from my strep that I have lost most of my sense of smell which also means me sense of taste. However, Mike really enjoyed his meal, especially the parmesan truffle french fries. Those were delish, even I could tell they were to die for.



 Mike also did a great job on his gift to me this year. He gave me this bag that said "I love you with all my senses." Inside there was a poem and then five gifts. Each gift had something to do with one of the 5 senses.

Taste the gift was wrapped up and said "My first "taste" of forever was when I married you" and inside was a gift card to my favorite lunch place, Panera bread.

Smell - "I love the smell of coming home after you have so lovingly made a great meal." Inside was some money and it said "enjoy the scent of the $$ before you spend it on the clothes of your choice"
Touch- "Your touch makes me feel warm and loved!" Gift of fuzzy socks!
Sound- "I love the sound of your voice and even more when you sing!" A coupon to listen to the subtle sound of him folding 4 loads of laundry of my choice.
Sight- "It was love at first sight in the Rexburg Temple." A nice necklace that he thought would look nice on me.

I LOVED it! He did such a good job. I love it when he puts thought into the things he does for me. It means the world and it makes me feel even more loved. Another great anniversary!

Cedar Point

 As a teenager I grew up going to cedar point at least once a summer and riding some seriously fast, tall and scary roller coasters!  I didn't mind waiting in a line for 2 hours (or longer) in the hot sun to ride a 30 second ride. I haven't been in 6 years I think and I figured it was time I went back. So we drove up the night before and stayed at a hotel so that we would be at the park right when it opened. When we woke up and looked at the forecast it was suppose to be rainy all day. We debated even going with the bad weather, but decided to push on. We got into the park an hour early (because we stayed the night before on property) so we got to just walk on a few rides before the park opened to the public. Then it started raining and my positive attitude about being at the park started to waver. So we said a little prayer for better weather and what do you know.... the sun came out and we had the perfect weather for the rest of the day and since it was suppose to storm (but never did) it scared the crowds away so the lines were super short and we basically just walked on any ride we wanted to.

It was my sisters first time there and the first big roller coasters either one of them had ever ridden. They both liked them a lot. However, in my old age they made me kind of sick so I picked and choose very carefully the rides I would ride. That afternoon we went over to the water park next door for a few hours. We played in the wave pool, lazy river, laid out and rode a few water slides. It was pretty nice to be able to take a break (and a nap) in the middle of a long day.

After the water park we went and had dinner at a buffet in the park. Not the best meal I have ever had, but it worked. Then we set out to ride the biggest ride in the whole park - The Top Thrill Dragster. It was the tallest, fastest roller coaster in the world  till the 6 flags in New Jersey built a roller coaster identical to it but a few feet taller a few years ago. It goes from 0 -120mph in something like 3 seconds. It is pretty fast. The whole ride last about 30 seconds so you don't really even have time to be scared. It was Katie's first time riding it and she was pretty nervous sitting in the coaster ready for take off. Afterwards she wanted to do it again. It is a pretty fun ride if you like that sort of thing! 




After a few more roller coasters we went and rode a few rides that my mom wanted to ride 9she doesn't do roller coasters.) We rode these giant swing that take you up at least 100 ft in the are and swing you around. It offered some pretty good views of Lake Erie and cedar point. Then we rode the giant fairs wheel to end the night. On our way out of the park we had to get some dip n dots for the rode. They are my favorite summer treat and can only be found at certain places so I always take advantage when I see them. My favorite is banana split. Yum... I wish I had some now! It was a fun trip. It was more fun to spent that kind of time with my dad. He is pretty busy with work so it isn't very often that he can take a day off from work and spend the day with us. The only thing that would have made it better? The brothers and Mike... but they were all working. Booo!!

Ohio is where my heart is!

 After the long 8 hour drive home our first stop in Ohio was a frozen yogurt place called Menchies. So Good!! It was quick the welcome home and I decided we had to go back a few time while I was in town. It is always fun to drive into town after being gone for a while. For all the old familiar places to stick out and the memories to come back. I love pulling into the driveway and seeing my house, then walking inside and smelling my house, after all the years we have lived there it still smells the same to me. Then my fuzzy family dog Abby gets so excited to me I think she is going to have a stroke. I LOVE coming home! It was great to see my dad and brothers. I love the men in my life.

That night we did a scavenger hunt around town with my sibling and some significant others. Elizabeth and I were on a team together and had the best time. We did a lot of laughing, most of it when I tried to pet a real duck, she tried to chew 6 pieces of bubble gum and blow a bubble with it, when I did the chicken dance in front of Lee's Famous Chicken and when I tried to explain to a Claire's employee how much my little sister loved pigs and we would be so sad if they didn't carry any pig items (Elizabeth does not actually like pigs, but we were on the hunt.) We also had to play on the playground at the park, try on mismatched shoes, find some cannon balls and ride in a shopping cart. After the hunt we went to Applebees as is McKnight tradition, it is so nostalgic for me to go there late on a weekend night. It brings back TONS of memories I have made there over the years (obviously it is one of the only restaurants in town.)

Sunday we all went to church together which we don't get to do very often. After church we had lunch and long family conversations. Seriously my favorite thing about Sundays. They neighbors brought over their new pet bunny which was a huge hit. I tried to get Mike to let me bring it home but he was pretty firm in him resounding NO!

While I was at home we spent a lot of time at the local pool. It was the theme of the later part of my summer... boy do I miss it!  After our long days at the pool we went home and... bottled peaches! Seriously it was exhausting. My mom go 2 bushels (100 lbs) of peaches while I was home. Since they were already ripe we had to act quick before they started to rot. I do have to admit it was fun to learn how to do. I had never bottled anything before but it felt pretty good to see this box of peaches turn into this counter full of beautiful peach filled bottles. I just wish I could have gotten a few bottles home for myself. I wanted to make some of my own when I got home to CT but the peaches in CT are to expensive to make all that work worth it. We also made peach jam which was a lot easier than canning them. I wanted to make some of that as well but Mike doesn't like Peach jam and I don't really eat jam so that idea got tossed out as well.


I know this picture is not flattering but it make me laugh. I was sooo tired from canning that I had to sit down, but in my half away state I just sat on the floor then Abby came over and knocked me down on the ground and I just submitted to her. I didn't go to bed till 1am that night. It was well worth it though
 While I was at home I also played tennis for the first time. My sister is on the school tennis team and awnted to get some practice in so I went over to the courts with her. My brother and his friend Nate ended up joining us for a game of doubles. I had a lot of fun, I'm not great by any means but I had a lot of fun. I am hoping Mike will play with me sometime. He is pretty good at tennis so I don't know if it would be as much fun to play with me rather than another guy but we'll see.
 We had to get a few family pictures before I left home. Grandma and Grandpa came up from Columbus to visit with me and grandma is great about taking pictures. Andrew was sick so he missed out little photo shoot but we did have one dinner where is was all 9 of us, just like the good old days. I love that when we sit down to dinner at the table everyone just naturally assumes the old spot they sat in when we all lived at home. I like that so much can change, but some things still stay the same. I love my family so much and had a really great visit. I always do. We aren't perfect and we have our moments but at the end of the day we love each other and there isn't anything better than that. My mom and sisters took me to the airport at 4am on Sunday morning. I was glad I was to tired to process the fact that I was leaving them till probably Christmas, or I would have cried like a baby, like I am now. I love living in CT and I know there is no way I will ever be able to get Mike to move to Ohio but I wish I lived closer to my mom. It is kind of funny now that I am home again I will go to target or the the grocery store and think "I remember when my mom was here with me last time, I wish she was still here." Maybe that just means I need to get back to work and that I have to much time on my hands but I don't care, I just miss my mom. So my plan is to convince my parents and sisters to move to Utah one day, which is where we hope to live on day as well. Then we can live on the same street as my parents, Mikes parents, his siblings and mine. That is the dream.... and it will happen one day. Although I think it will be called the Celestial Kingdom and not Utah.

Sister/Mom moments

My mom and sisters stayed for 10 days. We had a blast together there was a lot of laughing and a lot of fighting. The fighting happened when my sisters played games together for to long. It was actually really funny to listen to them because they were so ridiculous. I am proud to announce that although I am still very competitive I am learning how to not let it bother me so much when I loose, so I was proud to say I didn't get caught in their cat fights.

We went to Pinkberry for the first time while they were here. I loved it. However my mom and sisters were pretty disappointed. They had a self serve frozen yogurt place at home that have tones of flavors and a lot of toppings and you get to put your own treat together. After going to a place like that I can now say I will not being going back to Pinkberry, although it is good I have found something better. It is called 16 handles and lucky (or unlucky) for me it is less than 6 blocks from my house. While driving around town we saw something very funny. A man on a motorcycle with a sidecar and a dog inside of it!! We about died. So what do you think we did? We turned the car around and followed the man and dog until we could get a picture of it.

One day that they were here we went to get out nails done. It was my moms first time getting a pedicure (she doesn't like people touching her feet.) Everyone loved being pampered a little bit (who doesn't) and we decided that it would become a yearly tradition every time they came. We all picked out pink polish for our fingers, so girly. 

We also spent quite a bit of time at the pool. It was by far the favorite activity. I have decided than one day, when we own a home, we WILL have a pool. It was so relaxing to fall asleep on a floaty listening to some good country music. We took another trip to the mall to pick up a few things. We saw the store "As seen on TV" and about died. My mom is notorious for watching HSN and QVS and buying half the things she sees so we were nervous to seen her into a store filled with things she had seen on TV. Luckily she didn't go to overboard :)


 And what would a visit from my sisters be without a lot of late night pillow talk. We had some really good conversations. They are starting to get old enough that the 9 and 13 year age difference doesn't seem so big anymore. We has one incident where we were all covered up in my bed when we saw a furry little earwig crawling on the sheets. GROSS! We all screamed what can only be described as Shawn and Guss screams hoping that's someone would come rescue us. Did anyone? NO! So being the oldest I had to be brave and take charge and kill the disgusting insect. I am now a local hero!

 I had so much fun with my mom and sisters and was really glad that when they left on Saturday that I didn't have to say goodbye to them. I was right there with them in the car on the way to Ohio for a week!! Yay for not working in the summer!