August 29, 2011

For Tradition's Sake...

Every year on the Tuesday after Labor Day, my mom would religiously line the three of us up on our front porch: shoulder to shoulder, backpacks on our backs, and lunchboxes in hand.  Standing in the middle of our front lawn, she would snap the obligatory “First Day of School” picture and pretend to ignore our eye-rolls.  This happened year after year until graduation.  We even did it the year that Mom bravely decided to homeschool us.

As we grew older, we’d groan, wince, and try to talk Mom out of another silly picture.  But she’d insist – all in the name of tradition.

In case you haven’t noticed, I carry with me a smidgen of the sentimentality that was so beautifully modeled by my sweet mother.  So today, as the weather turned appropriately cooler and the Mr. slung his backpack over his shoulder to face his 2nd year of Optometry school, I turned to my purse to pull out my camera.  Instinctively, he groaned, “You’re not going to take another first day of school picture are you?” 

I grinned.

So here is my *uber* handsome and cooperative husband.  Smiling on command and rolling his eyes – just a little bit. All in the name of tradition.
What a hunk!
This is how he feels about starting school.
And about me taking his picture.
Happy First Day of School, my love!  I'm so very proud of you and so very honored to be your wife!  You amaze me.

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August 27, 2011

1000 Days

I adore my husband. I absolutely do.  I happily cheer him on in everything he does and support his bravest endeavor to undertake 4 long and challenging years of Optometry school.

In all honesty, however, it does get taxing at times - this whole grad school thing. And (more often than I'd like to admit) I find myself wishing to fast-forward past this time to his graduation and the start of our 'real-life'.  BIG MISTAKE.  By wishing away this time, I'm missing out on the Gift. The relationships to be built, the memories to be made... you get the point.

Well, today marks 1000 days until my beloved Mr. graduates from Optometry school. (but who's counting?) Inspired by this project - and instead of wishing away this precious time - I will spend the next 1000 days identifying specific ways that we see God's gifts, faithfulness, and blessing in our lives.  1000 gifts in 1000 days.

Here we go!

August 24, 2011

A Family Affair

I know you've missed me.  *eyeroll* And I know you've really missed our weekend updates. *double eyeroll*
My apologies.

This last weekend, we had the honor of spending 4 (count that - FOUR) days with my parents and little sister.  It was divine.  It was so nice to have a longer-ish weekend with them - and perfect weather to boot!

Words fail me; so, here are some pictures.
Cooking with my bestie

The 2 Most Important Men in My Life

Aren't they adorable?!
BBQ on the Beach!

Is there sand?  Let's bring our Sand Wedges!

Dinner at Pumpkin Ridge after watching the LPGA Tournament.
So there you have it!  We had an amazing time; and it was so incredibly difficult to say goodbye.  After we bid them farewell, we collapsed on the couch and marveled at the indescribable blessing that we have been given in our family. Wow and wow.

Happy Wednesday, dear readers!  The weekend is nigh!

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August 18, 2011

on worry...

I'm a worrier.  I have always been a worrier.  I worry that my family will die before I do, I worry that the future won't turn out the way I think it should, I worry that I will be a horrible parent, I worry that a snake will come up from the abyss and bite me when I'm using a Port-a-Potty.  Rational or irrational, I worry.

I'm a planner.  I have always been a planner.  I meticulously attempt to plan my next day, week, month, year, lifetime.  I plan hypothetical situations, I plan real situations.  I like to be in control. (or at least think that I am)
For as long as I can remember, I have excused my worrying and over-planning as a quirky character trait.  By simply assuming the title of "worrier" and "planner," I excuse away the root of those issues:

My lack of trust in the One who created the Universe.
My lack of trust in the One who holds me in the palm of His hand.

Over the last few days, (and for no apparent reason) I have been overly wracked with both worry and the need to plan (to be in control of the situation should my irrational worries come to fruition).  Lying in bed at night, my mind has a tendency to spin out of control... horribilizing(totally a word) hypothetical situations that may very well never come true.  I guess that I figure, if I can anticipate it, it won't be so bad when if it happens.

Tuesday night, it was pretty bad.  I felt like I had come to the end of myself and had nothing to cling to but the One who is actually in control.  Through some divinely placed sermons and discussions with friends, the Lord has made it ridiculously evident that I am not in control of this life. And no amount of worrying or planning can change that.  And yet...

How can I not place every bit of trust in the One who holds all things together.  In the One who always has my good in mind.  After all, who, by worrying, can add a single hour to his life?   Slowly, oh-ever-so-slowly, I am learning to unfurl this grasping hand of mine, holding more dearly my Savior and holding more loosely the things (and even the people) of this world.

It's a process. I'm learning. I'm growing. And sometimes, growth kinda sucks.

“Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more important than food, and the body more important than clothes? Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life?"  - Matthew 6:25-27

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August 12, 2011

on heartache...

*Warning: What you are about to read contains far too much dramatic flair, mushy-gushy love stuff, and overall gushing about the Mr...  Don't say I didn't warn you*
Photo Credit: ericaannphotography
It was 11:17pm. Seventeen minutes after our mutually agreed upon curfew; because, after all, nothing good happens after 11pm.  We had stretched it out long enough, and it was time to say goodbye.  The evening had been wonderful.  Our standard: cook dinner together, finish up some final wedding details, and cuddle on the couch watching reruns of “That 70’s Show.”  It was this part that I hated.

He got up from the couch, and reluctantly, I followed.  He led me to the door where he gave me a tender hug followed by a gentle kiss on my forehead that sent butterflies to my stomach and turned my knees to Jello. The “I love you”s, “sleep well”s, and “goodnight”s were repeated in an effort to delay his departure.  But he had to go. We both knew it.  I pled for one more kiss, and then he was out the door. It took everything within my power not to fling the door open and chase him down the stairs for one more chance to hold him and breathe in his sweet scent.

Instead, I closed the door behind him and – with my all weight bearing against the door – sank to the ground, drew my knees to my chest, and wept. I hated saying goodbye to this man. Hated it.  Every time, it felt as though my heart was being torn from my chest.

It was 3½ months until our wedding. Every day the excitement grew stronger; and every night our goodbyes grew increasingly more difficult.  I longed for the day when our “goodnight” no longer meant “goodbye”.  Then, I would never have to feel that aching in my heart again.

I was wrong.

Nearly 1½ years later, I have been surprised to find that this heartache only increases with time.  Not the kind of heartache that arises amidst frustration, strife, or dissention.  It's the kind of heartache that makes me miss him when I’m away on business and I can’t fall asleep without him beside me. The kind of heartache that makes me miss him even when we’re in the same room. It’s the kind of heartache that throbs when I lay next to my devastatingly handsome husband as he sleeps. The kind of heartache that is unbearable at the thought of ever losing him. I can’t describe it, I can only wonder at it.  

Nearly 1½ years later, I still revel in the fact that I no longer have to say goodnight, close the door, and meander to my bed alone.  I revel in the fact that – every night – I get to fall asleep to the rhythmic sound of his breathing. I revel in the fact that I - a most blessed woman - get to spend the rest of my life with my very best friend.  I marvel at the way that, with a single look, he melts me.  Simply, melts me. I marvel at God’s incredible grace in giving me him and at His grace to cause our love to grow with each passing day.

Thank you, Jesus, for this gift.  I'll take it: heartache and all.

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August 8, 2011

on paying it forward...

Dear Kind Man in Front of Me at Starbucks,
You can imagine how surprised I was to step up to the counter this morning, only to find that my coffee had already been paid for.  Thank you.  You made my day, and made up for the fact that they were playing Jojo's "Too Little, Too Late" in a Starbucks.... and that it is now stuck in my head.

My coffee tasted extra good today. I hope your Monday was wonderful!

I'm off to go make some homemade pizza for dinner and figure out how to make a *fixed* car magically appear in my driveway!

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August 7, 2011

Never Too Old to Play Dress-Up

Do you ever have those moments?  The ones where you feel like you're living in someone else's body, someone else's life. Over the last few months, I seem to have had a number of "those moments."  Times when it hits me: Am I really 23?  Am I really married?! Hard to believe it a lot of the time.

So often, I just feel like a 10 or 12 year-old version of myself stuck in a grown-up's body.  I drive a car, I have a full-time job, I cook!  My inner 12-year-old self can hardly believe it.

Growing up, my little sister and I played millions of make-believe games that were set either in a hotel, an office, or a grocery store.  We dressed up in costumes.  We answered phones and took messages like professionals.  We even made up our own currency and business cards.
Yes, my hat says "Kiss the Cook"

Now, I have business cards.  Real ones.  Weird.   Now, I have my own office.  With a window, a desk, a door, even a *gasp* phone... everything that my little 12-year-old self dreamed of.  Now, I actually drive a car. (!)  And yet, from time to time, I still feel like I'm back in our old basement playing dress-up and pretending to be someone important going about very important business.  I just cannot believe that I'm old enough to be doing this.

I really felt it when the Mr. and I got dressed up for our anniversary dinner.  It was the kind of date that my preteen self could have only dreamed of.  The amazing food, the beautiful dress, the handsome prince....  part of me wishes that I could let her in on what her future had in store.  She'd be pretty stoked to see the man who ultimately won her heart.  I know I already wrote all about it over here, but a girl can wish, can't she?!

Oh well... I have a feeling that - as time continues to utterly fly by - this is not the last time that my inner 12-year-old self will poke her nose out and wonder, "Wait, what's going on? And what am I doing here?! Am I old enough to be driving?!"

What I do know is this: I don't have to grow up completely; and no matter how old I get, I will never stop playing dress-up.
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Camping with the Fam-Bam

I don't know about you, but as I get older, my punctuality has begun to selectively slip away.  It's bad.  My 16-year-old self would be embarrassed.  By "selectively", I mean that I show up nearly 30 minutes before I'm expected to be at work, yet I feel like I'm always running late when meeting a friend for coffee... or posting a blog in a timely, relevant manner.  If you have a problem with the latter, please refer to this chart.

Anywho, we went camping last weekend with my in-laws; and it was glorious.  The sun, the food, the company, the excessive Settlers (of which I won 3 in a row)... perfect weekend.  This was the first camping trip of the summer for us... finally.
We pretended to be ninjas.
Roasted Marshmallows for Breakfast.
We saw pretty things.

It was so relaxing to spend a weekend away, enjoying God's creation... even if I did find a snake in the river in which we were swimming.  Yikes.  Oh, and then, the Mr. went all trackstar on us and turned his ninja sword into a javelin.  We have no fun at all.

We had lots of fun, and I have the tan-lines to prove it.

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August 2, 2011

Who IS this Man??!!

And what has he done with my husband??!!

First, you must know, I made burgers for dinner tonight... I mixed, the Mr. grilled. He is truly the Grill-Master. The burgers were absolutely fantastic. (See recipe below)  Seriously, this recipe is a keeper. As is the Grill-Master.
Second, you must know, when the Mr. and I started dating, he liked his burgers with only cheese and ketchup.  And - with all due respect - in my husband's world, bleu cheese was not only unheard of; it was repulsive.  That was before I came along.

He looked at me like I was crazy as I added clove upon clove of garlic to dishes; and he picked nervously at the pasta that I had topped with goat cheese.  "Cheese should only come from cows..."  Needless to say, (and I must take the credit *wink*) slowly, but surely his palate was diversified.

All of that brings us to tonight... Burgers were on the menu at the Boboth household. All-American Burgers.  My sweet man graciously asked if he could cook up some bacon and sauté some onions. Oh, and maybe, just maybe, top it off with some bleu cheese. Wait. Hold the phones.  MY HUSBAND is asking to add ONIONS to a dish??!!   And he wants to sauté them himself?!   Holy moly, will someone please resuscitate me?

All week, though... he's been adding garlic to this and sprinkling sundried tomatoes and feta over that... wow. It's heavenly in this here kitchen!   Sounds like I'm rubbing off on him.....

Let's just not talk about my increasing love of Eminem..........  he may be rubbing off on me too.

Oh, the recipe!!  It's from Giada... I love her.

2 cloves garlic, peeled
1/2 cup packed fresh flat-leaf parsley
2 pounds ground chuck
3/4 cup (1 1/2 ounces) grated Parmesan
3 tablespoons tomato paste
1 1/2 teaspoons sea salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
9 small french bread rolls, sliced in 1/2
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil

Cole's additions:  1/4 cup bleu cheese
White onion - sauteed
4 strips of bacon

Place a grill pan over medium-high heat or preheat a gas or charcoal grill.

Chop the garlic and parsley. Add the ground chuck, Parmesan cheese, tomato paste, salt, and pepper to a bowl. Hand mix until combined. Form the mixture into patties. Place the burgers on the grill and cook for 4 to 5 minutes each side.

Brush the cut side of each roll with the olive oil and toast on the grill pan for 1 to 2 minutes until slightly golden.

To serve, place 1 mini burger on the bottom half of each of the rolls. Place bacon, onions, and crumble of cheese on top of the burgers. Cover with the top half. Serve.

Sure do love this man I married...   ;)

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Just Us

We will also remind you that this is just a BLOG…just the highlights. We don’t sit around happily smiling for pictures all day long. Our life is far from perfect: we are imperfect people serving a perfect God. We do strive to glorify God, but we fail miserably and find comfort in knowing that our debts have been paid and we have been set free.

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