Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Life after "I Do"

I will admit... before the wedding I was the very first person to say that the thing I would love most about being married, was not having to plan the wedding anymore. As it turned out, that was only one of the things I love most about being married. While we have been together for 5 and a half years, our relationship has a renewed energy that has been so fun. I love seeing Jeff wearing his wedding ring, or calling himself a house-husband when he cooks dinner and cleans the dishes, or even better, when I hear him refer to me as his wife. :) I love looking through our wedding pictures and hearing from other people how much fun that they had at our wedding. As much as I despised wedding planning, I'm almost sad that it's over. The wedding, that is. :)

We didn't go on our honeymoon right after the wedding and it was definitely a little weird to go back to work afterwards and just jump right into real life. I took off two days before the wedding weekend and one day after and then went right back to work on Tuesday. My students continued to call me by my maiden name, because it was just easier, and my classroom was in shambles because there was a substitute in there for three days. The first day back to real life, I started my day with bootcamp, had a crazy-busy day at school, then had a presentation to do for the second to last day of the semester for grad school. It was as if the whole world hadn't stopped spinning to revel over our love as we thought it did. Since then, it's been hectic!

In two days (2 days!!!!!!) we are heading to Punta Cana in the Dominican Republic for our honeymoon. Excited isn't even the right word. Jeff planned the whole trip and after three jam-packed grad school semesters, two back-to-back baseball seasons, a busy school-year, and a whole lotta wedding planning, we will finally be able to relax. I can already feel the cold drink in my hand and sand between my toes...

Since we have been Mr. & Mrs., here is what we've been up to....

We go to church and wistfully think back to how our beautiful wedding ceremony is already a beautiful memory and no longer an anticipated event.

We celebrated our first two weddings as Mr. & Mrs. and we didn't have to plan a thing! Oh, how fun it was to just enjoy ourselves! Two down, five to go!

{centerpiece dollar dance.. typical}

We spruced up the front yard because our house has been seriously neglected the past few months and I am so happy that we are not going to be kicked out of the Homeowners Association any time soon. :)



We spent Memorial Day weekend up at the lake. It was so amazing to have a whole weekend dedicated to doing nothing but eating, drinking, boating, sunbathing, laughing, and roasting marshmallows.

We've done lots of partying, too. Two bridal showers, a baby shower, Jeff's birthday, my brother's birthday, and some cookouts. We are certainly loving life! :)

Sleepovers & pool parties are a must this summer, too! Love. this. girl.


We said 'goodbye for now' to a dear friend from our small group, who we were blessed to meet while she studied abroad in the US. Our sweet friend, Fanny, returned home to Switzerland, but only after a great send-off! Love these people! :)

And the most important thing we've done since the wedding? We became first-time puppy parents to the most adorable pup on the planet! Meet Rocky, our super sweet, sometimes crazy, purebread Boxer puppy! We are so in love with this little monster!


I just love, love, love being a newlywed and I can't wait to see what other experiences we will share that will be that much more special, just because we are married.

Next up, Punta Cana! :)

Friday, July 13, 2012

Friday Letters

Happy Friday! Some may say that for a teacher on summer vacation, every day is Friday, but not me. I definitely don't say that. Being home this summer, for the first time, is not what it is cracked up to be. Most of my friends, especially those local, are not teachers, and therefore are at work while I'm home. Boo! Friday means that there are only hours until the hubby is home with me for the weekend. At this point, 6 hours stand between a weekend of plans with friends, dinner dates, sleeping in, yummy breakfast, and church. LOVE the weekends! On that note, I am linking up with Ashley for one of my new fave link-ups. Time to break this blogging funk I'm in! (more on that later)


Dear Friday, you seem to get here quicker and quicker each week, which I'm not sure is a good thing or a bad thing, yet. Regardless, it's nice to see you.

Dear Hubby, you literally saved my sanity by installing an AC in the bedroom last night. I know it's no fair to come home to a cranky wife but two days into living with a broken central air unit, and trying to run around after a puppy that is the tazmanian devil after 5 cups of coffee, will get anyone a one-way ticket to CrazyVille. Thank you for putting up with me. You are so good to me.

Dear Rocky, you are a madman but I absolutely adore you! I had not a clue in the world just how crazy life would get with a new puppy, but we are learning so much about each other. You test my patience in ways I didn't know were possible but you are stealing my heart, too.

Dear Princess, I know that a new puppy has been a really big transition for you, but I hope you still know how loved and precious you are to me. You are my first baby and will always hold the most special place in my heart. Hopefully spending time away from your new little brother next week will be a nice break for you and a good excuse to be loved on constantly from your grandparents.

Dear Punta Cana, I will see you in less than a week. I cannot wait to be on the beach with a drink in my hands for 11 days. Heaven!

Dear Bootcamp Trainer, I don't think you'll be happy until I'm on the floor gasping for my last breath, but I LOVE the workouts. Keep em' coming!

Dear Zumba Instructor, Holy Moly! This was only my second week but I can't believe how much I have been missing out before I discovered Zumba. So. much. fun.

Dear HVAC guy, I may give you a huge kiss when I see you tomorrow morning. I will never, ever take the central air for granted again.

Dear Jillian Michaels, I always love you & hang on your every word, but... you recently said (on Facebook) that being in a warm house in the summer and cold house in the winter, helps to burn more calories. Ok, great, my AC is broken this is good. Except you also said that being in a warm house without an AC will help people to eat less. Why is this not applying to me? Please get back to me. Thanks! :)


Now I'm excited to go find other blogs while the little devil sleeps! :)

Friday, May 18, 2012

Happy Friday!


Dear Husband, I just love being married to you!! I also love that last night you decided that we should get married again because it was so much fun. The best is yet to come, my love.

Dear USPS, What's up with your business hours? Closing at 3:00, or even worse, at 2:00, doesn't really help anyone out. Especially people who need to get their Passports in a certain time frame!

Dear personal trainer, I'm pretty sure my quad is going to fall off of the bone. On both legs. Actually, all of my muscles, all over my body. Thank you.

Dear Domino's, thank you for bringing normal back to our house! Gluten-free pizza delivered on a Friday night? Don't mind if I do!

Dear Friday, thank you for being you. I wish every day were Friday.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

It's Wednesday!

It's another dreary Wednesday and I'm linking up with Jamie for What I'm Loving Wednesday.

Here's what I'm loving today..

I'm loving that we're back to spring weather tomorrow! We've been having these rain spells that last all week long and I'm tired of it! Bring on the sunshine!!

*Update: By the time I posted this, the rain stopped & now it is muggy & feels like July. We can't win!

I'm loving that my fridge looks like this...

2012 is a busy year for us and I love looking at all the Save-the-Dates, baby & bridal shower invites, and wedding invitiations. Oh, and some of our pics have been updated recently and that makes me happy. :)

I'm loving that we are puppy shopping! I want a dog SO bad & I am just in love with these sweet pups! How can I resist these faces??

I'm loving that I almost emptied out the entire DVR today! I've had a head cold since last Thursday (and I'm pretty sure my voice will be totally gone by tomorrow) and I finally took a day off today to just rest and try to get over it. I got to catch up on some Bethenny Ever After, Sister Wives, RHONJ, and 16 & Pregnant. Nothing wrong with that lineup! Hah! I also may start watching The Bachelorette after all the Emily hype everywhere.  I may need another day off if I add any more shows!

I'm always loving my sweet husband and that he always cleans up from dinner, even when he cooks. :)

I'm also linking up with Michelle at The Vintage Apple for Oh, So Pinteresting!

Obviously a day on the couch unloading the DVR also means a day on Pinterest!

Here are some of my fave finds today...

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This is the best one...

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I love Wednesdays! :)

Friday, May 11, 2012

Friday's Letters

I'm linking up with Ashley at Adventures of a Newlywed for Friday's Letters. I have seen other bloggers writing these letters on Fridays and I think they're too cute.


Dear Friday, you really took your sweet time getting here after a long week of state testing, but I am just thrilled you are here. I literally cried out, "Thank God it's Friday!" when my alarm went off this morning. Now if you could only speed up a tad so that I can be on the couch with my hubby watching our wedding video for the first time.

Dearest Husband, I am so happy, so blessed, so fortunate that you chose me to be your wife. Our relationship has grown more just in the past couple of months that I ever thought was possible. You picked the perfect wedding song... "I thought I loved you then..."

Dear Social Security office, you may want to have more than just a security guard standing in the lobby. I would suggest a metal detector and drug tests at the door, as well as looking into the possibility of a reality TV show deal. I could not believe my eyes. Or ears.

Dear Turkeys fighting in front of my driveway this morning, please take your shenanigans elsewhere. I am a city girl and the thought of even one turkey that is still alive and within walking distance of me, is enough to send me over the edge. Eight turkeys is too much for my city self to handle. My stomach literally flips when I think back to it.

Dear Princess, you need to work on staying in one spot when you get to sleep in the bed. Getting up in the middle of the night and jumping on Jeff's chest is really not helping my case that you are a lovebug that only wants to snuggle.

Dear Sunshine, thank you for coming out! I have been waiting for you and I am so glad you will spend the weekend with us. You will be especially lovely at the outdoor wedding by the ocean we are attending this weekend.

Dear Bloggers, I have been on the hunt without success... where can I find a good blog designer? I need a makeover!

Go link up to play along!

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

What I'm Loving Wednesday

On this dreary Wednesday, I'm linking up with Jamie for What I'm Loving Wednesday. Here's what I'm loving today...

I'm loving MY HUSBAND!!! That's right! We've been newlyweds for a week and a half and I could not be happier!!


I'm loving  that my sweet hubby revealed our surprise honeymoon (that he planned completely on his own!) on our wedding day. We are going to Punta Cana in July!! Ahhh!!! We will be ziplining, exotic snorkeling, and on a catamaran day cruise. Not to mention spending 10 days on the beach with a drink in our hands. Perfection.

I'm loving that state testing at school is halfway over! Only two more days! Can I get an amen?

I'm loving my girlfriends and the amazing things they did for me leading up to our wedding. I am so blessed to have these girls in my life!

All 10 of us at the cocktail shower they threw for me!

I'm loving that my sweet friend Erin asked me to be a bridesmaid in her wedding this September! We just adore her and her fiance and I am so honored that she asked me to share in such a special day with her!

Are they not the cutest?

I am loving our wedding video preview and that my videographer already dropped our completely edited video in the mail! 11 days after the wedding!!!

I am on Cloud 9 right now and could seriously go on for days, so I'm going to stop! Go link up with Jamie to play along!

Monday, May 7, 2012

Officially a Mrs!

Well.. it's official! We're married!! I feel like time is moving at lightning speed because somehow my wedding already happened and I am settling nicely into life as a newlywed. We had the most perfect day... the sun was out, the sky was blue, everything went smoothly, and everyone had a blast. I have truly never been happier in my life than I was that day. Everyone kept commenting on how calm I was but my heart was most definitely fluttering like mad. As soon as I was at the church, my heart settled and I was just ready to walk down the aisle to my husband. The love in the room was overwhelming and I just can't get over that all those people were there to celebrate us. We have the very best friends and family and are just so blessed to have such wonderful people in our lives. I can't wait until the photographer gives us our CD so that I can share the pictures. Until then, here's a sneak peak at our wedding video.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

What I'm Loving Wednesday!

It's been a while since I've linked up with Jamie for What I'm Loving Wednesday but I'm baaaaackkkk! Here's what I'm loving this week...

I'm loving this spring summer weather we're having. 70's & 80's in BOSTON in MARCH! Say what?! We grilled & ate on the patio tonight & were chewed alive by mosquitoes. In March! It won't last long in New England, so I'm enjoying every second of it.

I'm loving that the trees are budding & flowers are blooming. I was thinking that trees would be bare on our wedding day. Not so sure of that anymore! :)

I'm loving that our wedding is in 39 days!! 39 DAYS!!!


I'm loving that my bridal shower is this weekend!! All I know is that it is an evening affair & I need to wear a cocktail dress. So FAB!! I'm LOVING my outfit for it, too! Take a look at those shoes! They're Baby Phat! What has the world come to?!


I'm loving that I got to see BOTH of my brothers this week!! :) :)

I'm seriously loving this sweet baby.

And I am ALWAYS loving this man. I will never figure out what it is that I did to deserve him!

Go link up with Jamie to play along!

Monday, March 19, 2012

Resolution update!

With 2012 in full swing, I wanted to post an update on the status of my resolutions. They're actually happening!

Personal Goals

1. Get healthy. (Check!) Weight Watchers is working for me, when I put my mind to it. My weight is definitely going up and down but something changed in me recently and it's been consistently going down. Bootcamp didn't work out because it conflicted with grad school but I recently started the Couch to 5K program and so far, I like it!

2. Develop a deep and meaningful relationship with Jesus. (In progress!) I am loving our small group and I am learning how to develop a stronger relationship with God, while we build incredible relationships with the other couples in our small group.

3. Finish wedding planning and have a stress-free wedding! (Hah! In progress!) Still lots to do but I'm cashing in my massage gift cards that I received for Christmas and praying more often.

4. More blogging! (Double Hah! Not happening) I am glued to my computer but it's mostly for wedding stuff & grad school research. However, we have SO many awesome things coming up that I can't wait to share!

Professional Goals

1. Be more positive at work. (Trying) I'm really, really trying.

2. Complete 4 graduate courses. (In progress) My first grad class of 2012 is half over and it really hasn't been too bad. It's a math course focusing on differentiating instruction and curriculum assessment and I've enjoyed it. The professor is down to earth and understands that we are also teaching full-time jobs, so it has been incredibly manageable. I also switched the courses around so that I have a course to take in June & July. I am right on track for 4 courses by the end of the year.

3. Work smarter, not harder. (Trying) Unfortunately, I have more papers to grade and piles are popping up faster than ever before. I guess I didn't take into consideration that with the wedding and grad school, I wouldn't be bringing as much work home with me. My preps just aren't long enough for me to feel accomplished. I'm hoping that May & June will be about catching up and getting organized.

Not bad, huh? :)

Friday, March 16, 2012

6 weeks!

Apparently this is the year for... not blogging! Typical of me to post a resolution that included "blog more" and then literally not touch my blog for over three months. Woops!

Life is passing by at an unbelievable speed and while I really want to document more of it on my blog, I need more hours in the day and more days in the week. Ironically, I am GLUED to my computer but have not had a chance to update. Really, I have no idea what I used to do before I had a wedding to plan & grad school.

Our wedding is in 6 weeks. SIX WEEKS!! How in the world did that happen?!?! Most of the big stuff is done & now there are lots of little things to plan. Who knew there were so many choices?? Linens, paper, ink, stamps, music, transportation, jewelry, the list goes on. I have never been a huge fan of wedding planning but my current favorite thing to do is check things off the list and get RSVP's back. It all feels so much more real knowing that people are actually attending the wedding. My second dress fitting is tomorrow and then I have 104 things to cross off the list this weekend. This 6 week mark is making me nervous!

I am so grateful for this time and cannot wait to be married to my very best friend in 6 weeks!

Thursday, January 5, 2012

This is the year.

We're 5 days into 2012 and I know that if I am going to post my resolutions, I better do it soon! I'm not usually a resolution posting kinda person but if there is ever a year that I need a resolution, it's this year. And if there is ever a way to get me to stick to something, it's by declaring it publicly.

2012 is a big year for me. First of all, we are getting married this year. April 28, 2012! I have been waiting for this day for 2 years. Or at least that's how long we've been engaged. I didn't want a long engagement and somehow I got one, so it feels even more special that the big day is only months away. I've watched friends who got engaged after us, get married before us and it made it feel like our time was even further away than it really was. When the ball dropped at midnight, I looked over at Jeff and we just smiled. This is our year.

To keep myself accountable... I am listing (for the first time ever) my resolutions for 2012.
(To clarify, this is the first year of making resolutions and sharing them for all the world to see. If you read my teaching blog, you have already seen a condensed version of this.)

Personal Goals

1. Get healthy. Seriously. It's no secret that I've been slowly putting weight on since college and it's time to get rid of it. While I didn't consider myself to be very active in college, looking back now, I really was. I walked to all my classes and all over campus, everyday. There was a salad bar at our dining hall and I always made myself make a salad. I drank skim milk with almost every meal and ate three reasonably healthy meals a day. Now that I'm teaching, I can hardly find time to pee during the day, never mind eat. My lunch ends up being about 20 minutes and whatever doesn't get inhaled, usually gets thrown away. The only thing less appealing than a salad every day, is a salad that is warm and wilting at my desk. By the time I get home from work, I eat whatever I can and have no energy to work out. I normally cannot even stomach the thought of being on my feet for another minute, never mind for another hour, while sweating! That's about to change. This year, I will make more time for myself to be healthy. That includes... joining Weight Watchers (done!), finding a local gym with affordable classes/bootcamp (in progress), and using the elyptical at home three days a week. Jeff will appreciate that last one since he was so excited to buy it and I've used it twice. Yes, I want to lose weight. More importantly, I want to feel good about myself again.

2. Develop a deep and meaningful relationship with Jesus. I never thought I would find myself saying this and meaning it, though I always dreamed about it. After growing up without any direction in faith, I can honestly say that I have found my faith, my church home, and church family. Part of that is due to the courses we have taken to learn more about Christianity and part of it is because the people of my church have embraced me so openly and whole heartedly. I am looking forward to our small group that is starting up and pray that it will bring me the understanding of and relationship with God, that I am seeking.

3. Finish wedding planning and have a stress-free wedding! Ok, I know that weddings end up being stressful because so much goes into planning them. However, I want to know that I've done everything I can do and that whatever happens, happens. I don't want to feel stressed two weeks before the wedding because I haven't picked the right tablecloth color, the flower I want isn't in season, or the "do not play" list hasn't been created for the DJ yet. I have a hefty list to finish up for January and that should bring me closer to my goal. I have a plan for each month until the wedding (four months to go) and hopefully that should do it. The ultimate reward is getting to marry my best friend and I won't let anything take away from how special that really is.

4. More blogging! I have LOVED blogging and "meeting" people through the blog world and I need to keep up! While my blog isn't brand new, I haven't really spent any time developing it. I enjoyed looking back to read some of what I wrote a couple of months ago and wished that more of our memories were written down on here. Maybe someday I can turn this into a scrapbook of sorts and look back and remember this time in our lives fondly. I also really enjoy having some "me" time at the end of the day to read blogs and update mine. Here's to more of that in 2012!

Professional Goals

1. Be more positive at work. I love my job and I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE my students. It's the adults that get to me! I need to focus more on MY job and what I do for the KIDS. If someone isn't doing what they're supposed to, shame on them. We're all adults and I need to try not to fix everyone and everything. I am so blessed to be able to be a strong role model for so many students in such a trying time for them, (remember middle school? Ugh!) and the way that I respond to everything around me is what they will see and remember.

2. Complete 4 graduate courses. Starting last summer, I completed my first three classes towards my Master's degree in Special Education. While I came close to dying under a text book, I still plan on taking more courses. I want to take one in the spring, two in the summer, and one in the fall. I tried two during the fall semester and it was too much, so this plan should work better. I would like to have my Master's degree completed before we start a family.

3. Work smarter, not harder. Prep time is more precious than diamonds to teachers and unfortunately, (in my opinion) it is not being used effectively in many schools. While I appreciate the "team meeting", meeting with parents, and analyzing data that will help my students grow, it really shouldn't take up so much of my prep period that I don't have time to use the bathroom or I don't know, actually plan for my classes. It should not take me two weeks to get 100 tests back, or enter grades online, or return phone calls. I should be able to use my prep period for some of that. I know what I signed up for when I started teaching. I get it. But waiting until 5:00 to pee and dropping food on my papers because I don't have any other time to grade than when I'm eating dinner, is unacceptable. It's also unacceptable to sit in data driven meetings and then not have the opportunity to ever look at or use the the data to help my students achieve their potential. I think it's a matter of me speaking up more and not letting a single minute of my planning period be used for anything other than planning, prepping, or grading. Furthermore, as much as I love my students, they move on at the end of the year. Jeff, my family, and friends will still be there. They deserve more of my time.

How am I going to hold myself accountable?? I haven't really gotten that far, yet. I'm thinking of maybe a monthly update. Just writing them out makes me feel more serious about them. This list wasn't just thrown together, either. I spent a long time thinking about what I really wanted to accomplish this year. I think that these goals are flexible enough to include some changes but firm enough to make a positive difference in my life. Of course, there are a million things that could use improvement, but I didn't want to get too carried away! I am SO looking forward to seeing where 2012 takes me! Hoping that this year holds just as much promise for you!

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Bling Bling Linkup & Engagement Story

In an effort to blog more in 2012, I could not pass up this opportunity. C Mae is having a Bling Bling Linkup and since we just celebrated our engagement-versary, I am all in! We've been searching for wedding bands and I can't wait to browse through all of the gorgeous engagement rings and bands and get some ideas.

Our engagement story

Jeff and I were engaged on December 26, 2009. I swore I knew it was coming and since Jeff is such a Christmas-lover, I was sure that it would happen by the Christmas tree. I was wrong. Christmas came and went with no sign of a ring. It was Christmas night and we were opening our gifts with his family. I was already over the potential engagement because I figured if it were going to happen, it would have been done already and privately. Jeff handed me my Christmas card and said it was the last one. Inside were tickets to see Blue Man Group for the following night. I was SO excited because every year we go to a Broadway show but I have been dying to see Blue Man. I really put any hopes of a proposal behind me because he had already spoiled me at Christmas.

The next night, we went out to dinner at a local Italian restaurant. At dinner, we talked about how much our lives have changed and that all of our friends were starting to get married and how strange it all felt. We started talking about our own wedding dreams and I said I wanted an October wedding and he said he wanted April. When I told him how many bridesmaids I was thinking of, he nearly fell out of his chair. He seemed relieved that we were not engaged and wouldn't have to worry about any of that yet.

After dinner we went to the show and had such a blast. I would go back again and again. Thinking back now, he was adamant about me sitting on his right side but I didn't think much of it then. When the show finished, Jeff asked if I wanted to take a walk in the Boston Common. Since I love the city and Jeff doesn't, I'll take any opportunity I get to enjoy it, even on a cold December night. Jeff didn't have a jacket with him and said it wasn't a big deal if we went for a walk or went back to my apartment and got a movie. We decided on the walk and held hands through the park as we admired the Christmas lights and talked about how we should go into the city more. Again, as we walked, Jeff made sure to keep me on his right side. Jeff started looking back constantly and for a minute, I thought we were being followed. I started looking back, too, and getting a bit nervous. All of a sudden, he said... "April and October, huh?... 9 bridesmaids??" My heart literally dropped out of my chest. I was suddenly aware of what was going on. My usually cool, calm, and collected boyfriend was checking over his shoulder and saying random wedding-related things out of the blue. He stopped walking and said, "I have a question for you... will you marry me?" I was 99% sure this was a cruel joke because he wasn't down on one knee (his excuse was that it had just rained!) and I was totally blindsighted. All of a sudden, he pulled out a ring and was holding it out to me.

I don't remember too much else besides lots of crying and saying "Are you serious?" over and over. He started to put the ring on and asked if this (the crying and smiling) meant yes. I said, "Yes! Yes! I will!" He put the ring on and I didn't even look at it. All I could do was smile and cry and kiss him and hug him. It was all so surreal. I came back to reality when he said, "Do you want to call your parents? Because my parents are probably sitting by the phone going crazy!" We called our parents and then headed over to my parents' house where they had champagne waiting for us. It was such a fun night! My roommate had left wine out for us with a message and we celebrated again and again. I do wish we had spent more time just the two of us before telling people but I was afraid it would leak out on Facebook and I didn't want my best friends or family to hear the news over the internet. The best thing was that my family Christmas party was the next day and we got to announce it to everyone in person. It such a fond memory for us and I will cherish that time forever.

{ps. he was keeping the ring box in his left pocket, which was why he was apparently trying to keep me on his right side!}

He picked out the ring himself and we had never gone ring shopping. I did tell him that I wanted a princess cut diamond solitaire. He decided to go with the three-stone ring but with princess cut diamonds on a platinum band. I love that he chose the ring and was so proud of the clarity and quality of the band and diamond. I really have no clue what any of it means but the ring is gorgeous and I love it!! I am SO looking forward to our wedding on April 28, 2012!! Four months to go!

{So sparkly!}

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Looking back at 2011

While I haven't been blogging very much, I have had a wildly busy, crazy fun 2011. One of my resolutions is to blog more in 2012. I'm getting started with a look back at some of the highlights of 2011.


We were snowed in more than a few times, which left me lots of time to try new recipes and enjoy the Nook I received for Christmas.

We celebrated Dylan's Senior Night as a family. We had about 30 seconds to get on the ice and get in the picture and somehow we were all looking at the same camera at the same time.

Jeff was finally given an answer for his mystery skin condition and diagnosed with a gluten-allergy in late December. We went gluten-free on January 1st. We had so much to learn but we are much healthier, happier people now.


During the school break, my friend Nicole & I took the babes to an indoor petting zoo. It was a blast and it was hilarious trying to get the two kids to look at the camera at the same time. I was busy snapping away while the kids were practically jumping into the goat pen. LOVE these kids!

{Look how brave this boy is! Just like his mama!}

Anytime there's a vacation week, you can bet I'm having a sleepover with this little girl.

{This was definitely the year of the "pretty toes".}


We partied for DG DK's bachelorette party in Newport, RI. It was a great weekend with wine tasting, good food, a night out on the town, and ginormous sleepover.There were lots of obnoxious pictures, but this is the only one I'm posting.

We had a great time celebrating my mom's 50th and we actually surprised her!

My sweet girl turned two!! She is too funny; she had us lighting the candles and singing over and over, all while she snuck bits of frosting.

Jeff started a company with two dear friends and became the co-owner of what is looking to be a very successful commercial roofing business.


This cutie pie turned one! I could just kiss that face all day!


I started my blog with hopes of documenting our lives but did a pretty good job neglecting it instead. 


Donna & James got hitched! You can read about it here, here, and here.


Dylan's Senior Prom!

My baby brother graduated from high school! (Still can't believe it!)

We celebrated Jeff's 26th birthday.

Dylan turned 18!

We replaced the shrubs in front of the house! What a difference it made!


We had lots of summer fun and more sleepovers!

My sweet baby had surgery. This was a tough time for both of us but she did really well!


Nicole & I visited the splash park with the kiddos. We had SO. MUCH. FUN. I have way too many pictures but this is one of my favorites.

We were able to spend lots of time at the lake with great friends & family this summer. We always have such a great time there. The highlight of this trip was easily watching the boys  try to get on the jetski & playing the Real Housewives of NJ game!

{waiting patiently for the "word"}

We celebrated the last of KDubs KG's time as a single gal by spending the weekend on the Cape. We went to the beach, made lots of sangria, and had the best time going out to the beach bars & dancing outside!

I made some changes in my classroom & started my teaching blog.

We had more sleepovers! These two crack me up! They're the best of friends.

My Princess came to live with us forever! :)


Kristin & Scott got married! It was beautiful and we had such a great time!

I began my first semester of grad school!


We completed our pre-marriage courses required for our church & took our engagement pics on the Boston Common & Frog Pond, where we were engaged. :)

We hosted two Halloween parties and loved getting to dress up! Halloween is right up there with Christmas for us.

{Melissa & Joe Gorga from Real Housewives of NJ}

{Popeye & Olive}

We had another sleepover, filled with lots of dress-up, baking, reading, and playing.

Apple picking is our fall favorite. Every year we pick a different orchard and this year it was pretty quiet. It was so nice to just pick apples and enjoy the season.

Of course, when we got back we carved pumpkins. Another favorite activity.

{How precious is Jeff's carving of Princess??}

I turned 26 and had the most amazing birthday!

We began taking the Alpha course at our church, which was a wonderful experience. We also were able to go on a retreat with our group to Lake Winnipesaukee. We had an awesome time!


More sleepovers! I have treasured every moment with this little love! She is too much fun!


We celebrated for the entire month of December, had a beautiful Christmas, and hosted our first Christmas dinner.

This is the Christmas card we sent out, courtesy of Shutterfly. We also used Shutterfly for our Save the Date and the quality of the cards can't be beat. This was another engagement picture.

Stationery card
View the entire collection of cards.
Hope your year was just as filled with all things wonderful and that 2012 is even better! Happy New Year!