Category Archives: relationships

Fast forward a year…

Hi guys,

Welp, it’s really been a year. Over a year, in fact. In that time, it’s entirely possible I’ve lost every. single. reader. I had. Hopefully a few of you have hung on to me in your RSS feeds, allowing my little link to wallow away to nothing, hardly even noticeable in your daily blog skimming. Perhaps, when you saw the link light up again, you forgot who I was — I know I do that fairly frequently with infrequent posters.

No blame if you’ve forgotten who I am. I’m just thankful you’ve kept me around all this time. It’s been a busy year to say the least. And at the same time, not all that busy at all. I spend most weeknights vegging out with my husband. (Last time I wrote, he was just a fiance.) Our weekends are often busy, but just as often not-so-busy.

Between planning a wedding, working the 9 to 5, and simply living life, you’d think I would have forgotten about this little corner of the Interwebs. Instead, I think about it nearly every day. Usually in that 25ish mile commute, as my hands grip the wheel but my mind wanders above the Interstate, I think about it over here. I think about how I genuinely miss getting everything out on “paper”. And even more so, how I miss interacting with the people who used to read my jumbled thoughts. I think about potential blog posts, rarely crafting an entire post in my head like I used to, but just thinking about wisps of posts that’ll likely never get written. A topic, a sentence, it all flows in and out again as easily as it comes to me.

And so I often think about coming back. “Next week,” I say. Or, “this weekend, I’ll do it.” For just about 386 days now. Today, it finally happened. And that’s about all I’ve got for now. No major revelations, but hoping that it’s not another 386 days and that the wisps keep coming and maybe starting knocking around enough to put to “paper”.

In the meantime, here’s a little peek at one of my favorite days of the past 386.

Husband and I, happy and newly married, in the park outside our first home (the tall white building behind us).

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Filed under blogging rocks!, DD (aka My Man), Detroit, glass half full, relationships, Wedding

After “that” happened

It’s just like me to announce an engagement and then disappear for weeks, isn’t it? For all the inquiring minds, here’s an update. For those who couldn’t give a shit, I do promise that this won’t become a total wedding blog. Notice the word “total”…I can’t promise it won’t come up again.

Basics
We’ve got the church and we’ve got the “hall”, which means we’ve also got the date next April. I really hate that word, hall. I wanted to do something different from the typical hotel ballroom or neighborhood hall, and I think we found it in one of the local yacht clubs. Their ballroom is lovely, their costs aren’t outrageous – though between all the liquor and snack upgrades DD wants, it’s definitely a bit more than I’d hoped to spend. Thank goodness we have parents who are helping and who loved the venue as well.

We looked at three places and there’s a small part of me that thinks we should have expanded the search to find something even more cost effective, but that would have meant looking at even more non-traditional locales that would have required us to bring in our own food, liquor, linens, etc. As much as I wanted to be different, I also didn’t want the hassle. Though I have experience planning events and my day job is as a project manager, I didn’t want my wedding to get so detailed that it becomes that heinous project I don’t want to manage.

The Budget
Though the wedding is 12 months out, I’m already having dreams and mild panic attacks. At first, it was about the location. Was I looking everywhere? Had I exhausted my options? Was I making the right decision?

Now, it’s about the budget. First, our current budget is much more than I thought I’d be spending on my wedding. The expense frustrates me, and the majority of it isn’t even my money! Second, there will be lots of hands in the pot; DD and I, his aunt, and my parents – who are picking up most of the tab. I’m trying to walk a fine line between involving our families and also making it clear that we (read: I) have certain ideas about our wedding. Thus far, they’ve been great. Fingers crossed. 

Though, I don’t think I will ever full get over the awkwardness that is the money. My parents and I have never really discussed money and in their minds I’m still their little girl so they shouldn’t discuss money. When I sat down with them to try to get a handle on how they were interested in helping (read: how much they were willing to give), it was nothing less than awkward. At almost 30, it’s hard for me to ask my parents to just shell out tens of thousands of dollars, but it’s also hard for me to drain my own savings account that could go toward the future for DD and me.

I think we’ve finally come to an understanding on who will be pitching in and with how much. I hope we have. Frankly, that’s the other thing about the budget that has me stressed. While we have a general idea of how much we have available to spend on each thing, I really have no idea if those estimates are doable in today’s Wedding Business. Yes, that deserves capital letters.

In addition, DD and I have very different ideas on where we want to spend money and where we don’t. For instance, I could give a shit about the late night snack, but I really want to rent fancier chairs. He’s the opposite – oh, and throw in the premium liquor, too!

Perhaps that’s why God made weddings in the first place. To offer the happy couple a little test on compromise and financial planning.

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Filed under DD (aka My Man), Detroit, family values, relationships, Wedding

So that happened

Last Saturday, after a nice little date night, DD and I walked home and stopped in Campus Martius Park. To my shock and awe, he got down on one knee, and showed me this:

Obviously (since it’s on my finger), I said yes.

For now, that’s about all I can muster up for a blog post. It’s been a long week, and has only been made longer by my sudden and immediate interest in planning a wedding. I’ve gone into full-on project manager mode and much to my friends’ surprise, already have a guest list and several potential venue choices, even though we’re not looking at getting married until April 2012.I keep telling DD that I’ll calm down once we’ve got the location and date locked in, but somehow I doubt that will be the case.

But, with all of that planning, there hasn’t been much time to sit and write a blog post. So, I’ll be back. In the meantime, gaze at the pretty bling. It’s what I like to do in my spare time. That, and think about how adult I suddenly feel.

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Filed under DD (aka My Man), Detroit, glass half full, relationships, Wedding

The one with diamonds…and smarm

A couple weeks ago, I made dinner for DD and I. As he was dishing up his pulled pork, he casually said

You know what we need to do next weekend?

I assumed he was talking about the massage gift certificates we needed to use, or the family we needed to see, or some other trivial task. Instead, he said:

We need to go ring shopping.

Without missing a beat (though, to be sure, my heart missed at least one), I replied that we could easily do that this weekend since we’d be out in the suburbs and could just stop at a jewelry store in the mall. See, while we’ve talked about marriage, it’s always been a “someday” conversation. In fact, just recently we’d had a rather massive miscommunication about the timeline I thought we were working against. So for him to be ready to look at rings…well…it was surprising.

That Saturday, after his nephew’s basketball game and before we went to dinner at my parents, we stopped by the mall and moseyed into a certain chain jewelry store that shall remain nameless. While I’m not a fan of buying engagement rings from chain jewelers, I figured it would be a good place to start browsing.

Apparently, we walked in the same day they were having THE BIGGEST SALE OF THE YEAR OMG!

Maybe it won’t be such a casual experience after all?

I explained that we were just looking to get an idea of what I liked. That we weren’t buying.

I began trying on rings and we began talking the 4Cs. I mentioned to her that I’m a princess cut, solitaire kinda girl, and would probably prefer a Tiffany Setting, or perhaps a Compass Setting. You know, something like this:

 

Or this:

 

I asked the saleswoman if she had either of these settings to try on. She didn’t. But of course, she said they could “do anything” so my setting of choice wouldn’t be a problem – and that if I didn’t like it, they had a 60 day, money-back guarantee. Which is great and all, but why would I buy something that I wasn’t totally sure about – money-back guarantee or not.

As we continued trying things on, another saleswoman joined us. It wouldn’t be until later that we’d realize we were moving up the chain of command. Even so, I felt like we were keeping things casual and were avoiding the hard sell. I mean, who buys an engagement ring in front of their bride-to-be anyway?

Then DD pointed to a ring off in the corner. The saleswoman took it out and quietly said “this one’s $17,000.” Until now, she hadn’t said the price of one.single.ring. I tried it on, politely ooooed and ahhhed and gave it back, just as the District Manager walked up.

Ding ding ding. Apparently, we’d hit the jackpot. I like to think that ring was attached to some secret alarm that, when picked up, tells the District Manager that there’s a live one on the hook.  

District Manager dismissed my notions of being surprised and gave the hard sell. TODAY ONLY! BEST PRICE! Blah. Blah. Finally, he just pulled DD off to the side to “give him some pricing”. As they talked, the saleswoman sized my finger, “just so I’d know it”.

And here’s why I’ve told you this very long story. For the sole purpose of what happened next.

District Manager (clad in a full business suit) and DD walked back toward us. As I watched them out of the corner of my eye, I saw District Manager spray something in the general direction of his face and then slide the offending item back in his pocket, all smooth-like

Dude. He totally sprayed Binaca in his mouth. BINACA!

Hey, I totally get wanting to be fresh and minty. But I thought breathe spray went out of style sometime in 1995. Aren’t there enough mints and gums on the market these days that you can keep your breathe fresh without looking like a completely smarmy salesman? Or at least could you wait until we leave the premises?

Somehow, we successfully made it out of their alive, with DD’s credit card untouched, and with only a little slime left on our clothes.

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Filed under DD (aka My Man), glass half full, rambling nature, relationships

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Filed under crazy crazy, Detroit, glass half empty, Hmm, loft style living, rambling nature, relationships

House Hunting

The thought of buying a home has always scared me.

The idea of being settled and committed to any one place for any length of time isn’t something I typically get behind. In the three years DD and I have been dating, I’ve moved twice. And then there was the one time before that. And then the nine times in college (not counting any time I moved home).

I’m someone who needs to change things up.

But lately, I find myself obsessed with homes. With thinking about where DD and I might go when we’re married. Would we buy in Detroit and truly commit to the city and all that comes with it? Would we head to the old money suburb just outside the city limits? Or would we choose the trendy suburb with the yuppie downtown? Or what about the far-reaching new money suburb full of McMansions?

I drive through each of these neighborhoods on a weekly basis. And as I cruise the tree lined streets, I watch for For Sale signs and mentally nix the homes I don’t like. Back at home, my reader has become increasingly home/design inspired.

DD and I aren’t anywhere near making a decision about a home and I don’t plan to make any purchases on my own. And I really do love my loft. But, I know it’s temporary and that sooner, rather than later, I’ll be in need of something more permanent. As I see cute rooms and paint colors and built-in bookshelves in my reader, it just gets me a bit more excited about the prospect.

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Filed under DD (aka My Man), Detroit, glass half full, Hmm, loft style living, relationships

How I spent my summer vacation: The birthday

As a final nail in the recap posts, I figured I’d touch on my birthday, way back in June.

It passed earlier this summer without much fanfare. On the Monday before, I found myself at a Marine’s funeral. Then came the work meetings and the book club and the catch up and the general things that life brings.

When the weekend arrived, it didn’t seem to warrant much celebration. Frankly, after two weekends of dealing with death and family, we probably would have preferred to collapse in bed and sleep for a weekend. But, DD and I had long before booked a little jaunt to Windsor, Ontario, for dinner.

I can practically see Canada from my apartment, but I hadn’t been since I was 19 and it was the only place I could legally drink. So, I was excited to go for dinner and we found a great little place in Little Italy. DD got me a new and much improved yoga mat and other gear. Low-key, but just what we  both needed to get back into the swing of life.

What IS noteworthy is that it was the last birthday of my 20s. The next time June 13 comes around, I’ll be celebrating the big 3-0. While I’m not one to be all whoa is me about the impending end of my 20s, I am one to give it pause.

After a brief conversation with DD last spring, I’m relatively confident I’ll be engaged by the time I’m 30. So there’s that.

More recently, I’ve been thinking that the next decade may mean lots of changes. Changes in career. Changes in my status as a non-mother. Maybe even health changes. I can’t help but think that all of these things are inevitable. Isn’t that the way life works?

My 20s were pretty stable. The love life was rocky, but I found my compliment. The career was a rock. Through thick and thin, I’ve been there since I graduated college. Aside from a kidney transplant, the health was pretty stable as well.

It was good. But I’m probably due for something different. Will my career demand a new direction? Will my health take a turn? These transplanted kidneys don’t last forever, you know.

I think I’m ready for a new decade and all the changes that come with it. There may be a few I’m a bit terrified of — hello, motherhood! hello, second transplant! — but overall, I’m excited. (Except for that second transplant. That can hold off forever if I have my way.)

30 has a good ring to it. Now, let’s just see if I’m wearing a ring when it comes along!

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Filed under DD (aka My Man), decisions, foodie, glass half full, loft style living, rambling nature, relationships, transplant, Y is for Yoga