Wednesday, December 18, 2013

That one time I only had one semester left of college.

If I told you this semester was easy, it would be a boldfaced lie.  This was probably the most challenging semester yet.  
The papers for my Comn class were annoying, the exams and articles for my french class seemed pointless, but I know the work that I did: the art pieces I finished, the debates I conquered did well in, the resumes and portfolios I produced, are all extremely beneficial for my life in the future!  

6:45-9:45 pm finals however...keep em. I don't want em.

I feel free!
I have 31 days to spend at home, reading, crafting, baking, cleaning, working out etc. Oh and did I mention that Taylor's coming to visit in 10 days? No? oh. well he is!

That brings us to my goal-setting portion of this blog post! I've realized that setting goals is like a little mini personal self-challenge to complete them! 

That's all! Now I'm gonna go work on completing all those things! Hopefully you'll hear from me more often from now on...


Friday, November 29, 2013

Just Poppin in.

Hello all!!
Happy Thanksgiving! Yesterday my family celebrated with two of our geographically closest Uncles, and my sweet Nanny.  We were missing my older brother, and my fiance, but we managed to survive without them.....but with much sorrow.
Anyway! I had a fun time decorating with my mom! and by that I mean.... She put on the tablecloth and I did the rest! It was fun family bonding time, and the food was delicious as always. Moist turkey has still been an unreachable target for my mom's 3rd ever Thanksgiving, but I'm optimistic about the future!

but Thanksgiving ended.... so now it's time for CHRISTMAS!!!
and happy Christmas music time!
You know those people who just HAVE to wait until after Thanksgiving to be able to play Christmas music with a clear conscience? yeah? well I'm not one of them... I have been singing, and secretly listening to Christmas music since October.  Christmas movies? yeah those too.   However one of my house mates is not such a fan of Christmas music before Thanksgiving, so I've been holding back.

But not anymore.  No.  Now is the time for those happy violin-bell-and-suave-voice-filled songs about snow, love, joy, and Jesus!  It will be magnificent!  

To continue start the season off right, I'm having friends over tonight to cut paper snowflakes and drink delicious hot chocolate! In honor of those two festive ideas, I wanna show you some great pinterest ideas that I will fully be taking advantage of tonight.  I was thinking about trying to pawn them off as my own ideas... but I didn't think anyone would believe me...

So, Ladies and Gents,
 Happy Holidays, happy festivities, Merry Christmas time, happy Christmas music time, God is good, and God bless America.


Monday, October 7, 2013

Good news and Bad news...and Juggling

Man, guys.
Life is busy!!!! With a capital B....

It seems as though every single priority that I'm really supposed to have just gets pushed to the back-burner of life for some other priority which, for that day, seems more important.

Good news: We're putting a deposit down on a venue on Tuesday!! Cross your fingers that this is THE ONE. [p.s. do you realize how often we use that phrase?? We expect women to find "the one" man, "the one" dress, and "the one" wedding venue..]
The "best advice" that someone could give me while picking out a venue was "when you walk in... you'll know that it's the one"
.......... oh, really lady?

Bad news: I'm bringing back my wedding dress, because it's not the one.  I bought it in a fit of hunger, and desperate-times.  [when in reality I wasn't all that desperate, and was putting unnecessary pressure on myself to find the one that day]

Good news: both the grades I've gotten back so far have been A's!!!
Bad news: I haven't gotten my psych test, comn. paper, or either of my presentation grades back yet... they won't be A's.

Sleep and Shower Deprivation:
An actual picture I sent to Taylor to prove that I didn't need to shower. gross.
Good news: I get to go to bed soon!
Bad news: I really should be studying for my French exam tomorrow.
...also? did I mention my shower schedule? no? good.

The weeks in this semester have been FLYING by:
Good news: I'm graduating and getting married sooner!!!
Bad news: All my papers and exams are happening sooner.
...also everything for our wedding has to be planned sooner.

Also, Taylor surprise-visited me two weeks ago!!! More on that next time.

Anyway guys, as a conclusion..... I'll ask you one question.  
Do you want to learn how to juggle?? 
Because if you do...
Don't ask me.
I'm sucking at it.


Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Iktsuarpok. [its a real word]

We all know there are some words in different languages that just don't translate well into our [ever-so-elegant] english language.  Communication theorists believe and have proof that not only does culture effect language, but language effects culture.
Take the Hopi Indian for example.  They have very few personal pronouns [those words like: my, mine, yours, hers, his].  But that's not the interesting part.... the interesting part comes after when you look at their culture.  Their culture is very communal, and they view everything in their village as belonging to the village......Isn't it funny then, how their language doesn't have any personal pronouns? Coincidence? I THINK NOT.

Anyway... that's a little background information about language, and how it influences culture.
We have some pretty boring words in English, and I think we miss some important feelings. Like this word in inuit.

We don't have a word for it in English, but we should.

The kind of feeling that makes you look at the door every time it opens, in hopes that your favorite person in the world might be coming to surprise you that day.

The kind of feeling that makes you suspicious every time he all of a sudden stops responding to your text messages, and you automatically think it's because he MUST be on a plane coming to visit you, and not that he just ran into an old friend.

That's all I have to say about that.


Sunday, September 1, 2013

One year ago.

A year ago today, I could never have guessed where this year would take me. 
One year ago today, I was a junior at Geneseo, I had just spent my summer with hundreds of children at a summer camp, and I was getting ready to fly out to Oregon to meet Taylor for the first time, after having spoken to him online (through whatever mode of communication we could use) for a year.  
This year I've changed.  Yes, it's expected, but it's still so surprising and awe-inspiring when all those changes are piled up together in one blog post.  
This year, I actually got engaged to that guy with the really cute freckles that I finally met in person last year.  I spent my summer in Oregon, with the love of my life, building our relationship together.  I joined a sorority that will change the way Greek life is viewed on this campus, and God has revealed himself to me in so many special ways.  

I left Oregon on August 20th, and it has been 11 days so far.  Being apart sucks.  I've spent numerous nights since I left, crying myself to sleep, because I knew that when I woke up in the morning, Taylor wouldn't be on his way to pick me up, and I wouldn't be able to hug him, and just talk to him on our way to work.  

I flew home, and arrived at 5:30 am.  Then I slept for a couple hours, then later that day I had to go wedding venue shopping... because shopping for a venue from 3000 miles away never works out the way we all want it to.  I saw 4 venues that day, and got home that night extremely discouraged.  The next day I researched close to 80 different venues online, and went to bed with a list of venues to visit the next day.  I visited the next day, and fell in love.  I called Taylor, and sent him a couple pictures saying "we found our venue!!!!!" Call off the search dogs, we did it!

Then I celebrated my best friend's birthday, and the next morning, packed and left for school.  Got to school, said so many thank you's, and "ohmygosh I KNOW"s and even more explaining about our relationship in general.  But the good thing was that I had an answer when people asked about the date, and the venue, because THAT PART- the venue and date- the most important planning item ever, was decided.

But no.
Because: service charges
Thank you very much.

Point being: we are still in the market for a venue, and it's sad.

Notice this blog/journal/Ijustwanttowritesomething says absolutely nothing about school, classes, InterVarsity, AST, or any of my OTHER really important responsibilities... so take a moment of silence for those things' priorities on my life list.

That's it. I have things to do!


Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Last Thursday

Some nights are just perfect for funny pictures, fingers stained purple from blackberry picking, accidental mimosas, and blackberry pancakes with just a little more syrup than normal. And when those nights happen, we just wanna grab em and hug em, snuggle with em and thank them for extra time to spend with our loved ones...
That's the kind of night we had last Thursday. It was AWESOME, and totally didn't feel like a Thursday.

Champagne! To celebrate Taylor's sister's birthday (Dani) This champagne was of asian descent, made from rice........... it had a unique taste, so we improvised.

a glass of champagne and orange juice, and a tall drink of water.

Taylor's dad began planting wine grapes on the property 4 years ago, and this is the first year that their Noble Knob vineyard will produce wine!

Some Pinot Noir grapes going through veraison (when they change color)

we decided to abandon the walk-about and just pick blackberries because they were just perfect for picking and eating.

Phoenix learned that when he forgets to put his shoes on for the daily evening walk through the property....he gets a piggy back ride from his favorite uncle ever. rough life.

By the way... I'm in love with those faces. 

 This was taken by mister artsy-fartsy himself while I was busy teaching Phoenix about hot things...

 You can try to tell me that those don't look delicious... but I know you'll be lying.

Blackberry stains... the best kind of stains.

Friday, August 16, 2013

A date night

It's tough sometimes, pulling and tugging at time in our schedule, trying to stretch it and make time for ourselves. 
Between work, Taylor's classes, school work, and our drive to and from work, we barely have time for anything, least of all each other.  

But its ok.....Because when those times do happen, they're magical! Filled with deep conversation and jokes and so much laughing.... with a sprinkling of hugs and kisses on top.  That's what we got last weekend. 

We spent the day getting sweaty and saw-dusty while cleaning out the garage. 

That night we went to a movie 2 hours later than we planned to around 10 pm, after we showered and prettied-up.  We saw Elysium! 
[opinion on the movie: the plot was a little underdeveloped, and there was way too many exploding bodies for my taste -5-, but the message was pretty good, and it was certainly suspenseful!]

After that we were exhausted, but we went to a 24 hr. diner and had some dinner.  [dinner at the diner. heh.]
Honestly... this was the best time we've spent together in a while.  Our schedule is always so busy, that one night of just US time was like a breath of fresh air.  

Now that all sounds wonderful, right? But the outtakes [or bloopers] look like this: 
-Erika crying all the way to the movie because she realized that she won't be able to watch her friends' kids grow up, because she's moving to Oregon in a year...
-Erika crying during the movie because she realized that she's leaving Oregon in a week...
-Erika crying during dinner because she's having trouble communicating all her emotions
-Taylor has no idea what's going on, and is just trying his best to fix all the emotional breakdowns.
Hormonal emotions. Let's blame them.

But let's also see what we learned from all of this:
1. Crying is not a problem... it does not need fixing.
2. Moving away from home is going to be more difficult than expected
3. The expression of real emotion...real, RAW emotion... is sometimes more life-giving and bonding than if I had just dismissed it.
4. I just needed to be understood.

You don't have to be afraid of possibly causing conflict [like bawling the entire time for a bit during the first date you've had in a while]... because conflict isn't a bad thing.  Conflict can be beneficial! It all depends on how the conflict is perceived by both sides.
Taylor and I weren't arguing about anything, we didn't disagree about anything...he just didn't know what I needed from him! His manly instincts told him to fix it, because crying is ALWAYS a bad thing in men's brains....  But my "don't even..." when he tried, told him exactly the opposite.  He was stuck trying to make it better, but trying to do it the RIGHT way.
 I finally realized that what I needed, rather than 10 solutions, was just for Taylor to understand and empathize with my feelings, and tell me that it's ok.

That's the beauty of the way God created men and women.  He created men to be a strong, protector, leader, provider, 'fix-er'... and women as an emotional, loving, nurturing, yet still strong and passionate caretaker.  And THAT is the beauty of marriage.  Two people coming together to be ONE, and bring all their strengths, weaknesses, talents, fears, hopes, and dreams together, to fill in where the other lacks, and work as a team...

I'm glad I get to be on his team.


Monday, August 12, 2013

Wanna laugh?

don't look at my legs for too long. they start looking scary.


Thursday, August 8, 2013

Oregon Coast

Taylor and I drove out to Florence, OR this weekend for our engagement pictures, and drove up to Depoe Bay afterwards.  After numerous games of Monopoly Deal with the family, I fell asleep  we all went to bed.  Monopoly Deal is one of those games that you just have to GET. The strategy is somewhat complex, and the vultures (read: Jordan and Taylor) will take you DOWN if you leave yourself vulnerable.
I didn't win that night. 

One engagement picture :)
However the next morning I did win, and it was a wonderful, joyous morning!! Everyone was sulking, competetive, and jealous so happy for me that I finally won! [they weren't really sulking... they're good sports!]
After we got back from the tiny local coffee shop, where I had a spicy wench!!! [..... it was just a dirty chai, relax people], Jordan decided to take us on an adventure.

Although I like to believe and claim that I'm a pretty good hiker, and I can keep up, that "adventure" proved that I most certainly am not the former, and cannot do the latter.  But despite my protests and quiet complaints to Taylor [Shout-out to him for being patient and loving, and a TROOPER all during my tantrum bad attitude] I still had fun.  Taylor and I built a sand castle on the beach [our destination] and it was just a wonderful time.  [There was also this one point in the journey-adventure-torture, when we had to slide down a 70 degree hill, covered in small stones, on our butts, because there was no way we could hike down it without falling on our faces.  That happened too.]

You know those really feel-good times, when you're tired, warm, and absolutely have no care in the world if you get yourself or your clothes dirty and sweaty? Yeah. That was one of those times, and it was fantastic.  My legs were getting torn up by small bushes and vines, my hands got cut up by the rocks we had to slide down, and I got so much sand, dirt, and gravel in my shoes, but it was still fantastic.

Taylor's a lucky guy, no? 
Later we had a semi-potluck dinner, and showers.  I still don't know which I enjoyed better.  Then we had a fire on the beach, and somehow God provided enough wood for us to have a fire until past midnight.  We only brought like 5 small-ish logs, and quickly realized that our fire would be more short and sweet, than roaring and crackling.  Taylor found some abandoned logs from other fires, and we used them to start ours! 

Anyway. That's much more detail than you need.  The next day we played some more games, had some more food, Taylor got to snuggle with his two favorite cousins, more people showed up than were expected [but with the Boustead family, that's always expected], Taylor and I read the Bible together on Sunday morning, then we drove home! It was a lovely weekend.  

Coming up next: I've realized that being with Taylor is like trying to fit a large square peg in a round hole.... It shaves off all the rough uncomfortable corners, and helps me to become the woman that I know I can, and I will be.  It's kinda crazy, but I kinda like it... and want to talk about it, so stay tuned!