Tag Archives: Marriage

Marriage Preparations – Part 1

7 Jan

As I sit here on the couch, there is a Labradoodle-Irish setter (Teddi) resting on the floor to my right.  There is a Yorkie/westie (Molly) sitting to my left.  Both of the dogs are staying at my house for doggy-sitting (Teddi will be here the whole month, while Molly will be staying here until tomorrow.)  My kitchen is *mostly* clean.  There is a fresh pile of laundry sitting on my bed waiting to be put away.  The furnace is quietly rumbling while outside it’s about 20 degrees.  What a welcome presence this peaceful time is.  This is a welcome break from hustle and bustle of the Christmas season.

It’s 133 Days until our wedding!!!  Engagement – how do I describe it?  It’s brings with it so many emotions.  It’s a beautiful, busy, stressful, lovely and hopeful time.  My wonderful fiancé B. and I have been planning our wedding (soo many details!)  We have been house-hunting, praying together, growing together as a couple, and learning how to soak it all in in the meantime.  It’s wonderful.  It’s beautiful.  It’s a lot of hard work.  (And yes, I’ve shed tears.)  Our engagement has been a good opportunity to work on character building (which is a nice way to say we are far from being a perfect couple, which I know being a perfect couple isn’t realistic, which is a post for another day…I digress.)

Engagement is a good time to cleanse ourselves of rust that’s accumulated in our hearts and minds and to cultivate the Spirit of God who has brought us together and who wishes us to grow together in love, joy and wisdom.

As of late, I’ve been working on patience.  Marriage planning is pretty much guaranteed to test any couple’s virtues.  For example, I thought I was pretty patient, but you know, not so much.  Case in point: B. and I have been house-hunting.  As we look at houses both online and in person, I tend to get my hopes up for each house.  “We could paint this room, put new carpet here, add a porch there” etc.  But each house is either out of our budget, too far from town, doesn’t have the open floor plan that we both like, needs an overhaul, or just doesn’t quite fit the bill overall.  I had these grandiose plans in my head that after we got engaged, we would find our first house, fix it up and have it ready to move into by the time we’re married.  *Reality check*  Realistically we may not have a house by then and probably won’t have one that’s ready to move into.  Being patient through the house-hunting process has been very challenging for me.  I can’t wait to have a house to call “ours” and to have a place of our own to decorate and to call “home.”  I’m learning to let it go and pray “Thy will, not mine” and to TRUST in God’s timing. 

B. and I are asking our family and friends to pray for us as we prepare for marriage, that we grow in virtue, and that all the house-hunting, scheduling and coordinating goes smoothly and stress-free.  Will you join us in prayer?  Thank you!  We appreciate all the prayers!

 

 

 

 

Running to Bethlehem

12 Dec

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The clock read “4:40pm.”  I was at work, working off-the-clock, closing out a full and busy day at work.  After closing down my laptop, I packed it securely into my backpack, slid into my coat, and hurried outside into the chilly air.  After gathering my workout closes from my car, I went back inside to the workout room where I walked, ran and stretched.  That felt really good!

This Advent I’ve been running a lot and in many ways.  From the moment my alarm clock goes off – to the moment my head hits the pillow at the end of the day, my mind is running in a thousand directions.  The reason?  Work and WEDDING PLANNING!!!!   It’s so amazing, crazy and awesome to think that at this time next year, I will be married to my dearest love, the man of my dreams.  With all that goes into planning a wedding, it’s no wonder that some people go into careers as wedding planners – it’s a lot of work!  But a lot of glorious work.  My world as of the past couple months has been full of meetings with the church wedding coordinator, the priest at the church, potential wedding photographers, dress shops, etc.  What colors to have, shoes to wear, flowers to carry, cake to eat, and guests to invite, not to mention house-hunting – what a wonderful time of life.  And yes, I’m also back into working out and running!

Oftentimes as I think of all the details that need planned for our wedding day, I reflect on God watching me go through my day, watching over me with his Fatherly care, and I remind myself not to get too busy to pray and to grow in holiness.  I think of Mother Mary and her betrothal to Joseph.  How her mind and feet must have been running everywhere, but how she kept peace in her heart and love in her speech.  When Mary said “yes” to God’s will for her to be the Mother of Our Savior, she never once complained about how worried she was to travel to Bethlehem for the census.  She didn’t complain about riding on the back of a donkey, and didn’t complain about sleeping on a bed of hay when her husband Joseph found no room in the inn.  Mary was kind and loving in all ways.

This Advent in the midst of all the running and planning, I need to make sure I run to Bethlehem.  I need to learn from the Holy Family who exemplified every good and beautiful virtue.  I’m planning a beautiful wedding and often remind myself that our wedding day is not just all about us – it’s about our lives that we are committing to each other for GOD’S greater honor and glory.  I need to make sure that my spiritual life is growing this season and that I share the fruit of my faith with those around me.

 

The Holy Family lived in a busy time, but they never got too busy to pray and they were never too busy to grow in their spiritual lives.  Let’s run to Bethlehem and learn from the Holy Family there!

 

 

(photo op this summer at my oldest brother’s house – this is me with all my siblings (except one who hadn’t arrived to the cookout yet) plus extended family.  (I’m in the center holding the Frisbee.  B. had to work that weekend, so he wasn’t able to make the trip.)

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           One of my favorite engagement photos of B. and I

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Worthy Of A Beautiful Marriage

27 Sep

It is 1:03 AM.  I can’t sleep.  So, I got up and put my laundry away, put my room in order, and decided to blog.

Life has been amazing.  Amazingly good, amazingly stressful, and amazingly blessed.  Everything to becoming an insurance agent over the summer, to answering phone calls about insurance questions and claims (EEEK!) to dating the man of my dreams and growing as a couple, to planning our future together.  This summer has been incredibly wonderful.  There are so many things I could write about at this wee hour of the morning.  I could write about my job, or I could write about the presidential debate, or I could write about my new hair-do.  But, I have something far more important I want to write about right now.  I want to write about marriage.

Although I am not yet married, I love talking about marriage.  I see it as an opportunity, a journey, a cross, a blessing and a GIFT.  I hope to always see marriage in this way.

Marriage is a journey whereby a man and a woman commit their lives to each other to grow in holiness and share in the joys and struggles together – to help each other carry their crosses and rejoice in their blessings – to help each other get to Heaven.

In my opinion, there are far too many people who see marriage as a day where the couple signs up for long-term misery.  In the past several years, I’ve had co-workers tell me not to get married because “life is much easier when you’re not married.”  That is so sad to hear because that gives marriage a bad rap.  I’m not denying the fact that marriage is hard.  That is a given.  Any noble cause such as marriage is hard.  It takes a lot of work and a lot of selflessness.  I just had it on my heart to write about marriage and remind you that it’s good, and imperfect, and even though it’s hard, it. is. beautiful.

Once a very wise man told me that marriage is not 50/50.  It is 100/100.  We give everything for the sake of the other person.  We withhold no generosity, kindness, charity or patience even when we are tired and feel like we have nothing left to give.  If life were more about giving of ourselves as much as we could, can you imagine what an amazing world this would be?  It would be simply amazing!

My boyfriend B. and I pray for each other every day.  Even though he lives out of town, we still find ways to have date nights on a regular basis.  We love each other through the good and the bad, the laughs and the misunderstandings.  We carry each other’s crosses and work stresses, and we share each others joys and blessings.  We pray together and ask God’s blessings on our lives and our future together (and we pray for our forthcoming engagement this year!  I’m so excited I can hardly wait!!!!)

I have been praying for my future marriage for years.  I have dreamed of my wedding day over and over again, and have dreamed of having my own children. I want it so badly that it sometimes makes me cry.  I pray that I may be a good and holy wife and mother, and an obedient daughter of God.  I pray for married couples and for couples who hope to be married someday.  Marriage is good, beautiful and holy.  It is hard and it is difficult.  It is all a GIFT from GOD.

I pray that you may find peace, love and joy in your marriage.  God is there with you through the good and the bad.  Because He loves you.

You are worthy of a beautiful marriage. 

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Cherry blossoms in Washington, DC, photo taken spring 2016

Not Alone Series: Adult Life and Staying Connected

6 Oct

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Somehow Tuesdays sneak up on me so quickly that I end up scrambling to put my thoughts together either late the night before our discussions or the day of the discussion.  Today I’m writing on my breaks at work, and finishing up at home – thankful for a flexible workspace!

Before I begin writing on today’s topic….

Last night I had a late night at the dance studio where I take ballroom dance lessons.  I had my group formation lesson followed by my individual lesson.  After the second lesson I had a really good, deep conversation with my dance instructor and his assistant.  We talked about good versus evil, being good stewards of charity in a world that is topsey-turvey, and how we are called to witness with joy, even in the midst of the chaos and evil.  More on that later….

Now on to today’s topic!

Today we are talking about Lindsay’s new word: Adulting (definition below 🙂 )

How are you still connected to your family of origin (that’s the one you grew up in: parents, siblings, and extended family) even as you are adulting (a.k.a. living as an independent adult, at home or on your own)? How has your relationship with your parents changed as you’ve grown up? How connected are you with your extended family? What aspects of these relationships do you think are affected by your being single? How do you think your family relationships would change after marriage or entering religious life? (Thanks for the topic suggestion, Bek!)

 

Where to start?  My immediate family and I have pretty much always been really close.  We have gone through our fair share of ups and downs, but all in all, we have always been tight-knit.  I share a house with three of my sisters and we live about ten minutes from our parent’s house.  I visit my parents on a weekly/bi-weekly basis.  Quite frequently we have Sunday brunches at my parent’s house after Mass.  We enjoy long conversations, taking walks, and just being together.  Spending time together comes fairly easily for me and my sisters.  (And I say fairly easily because our work schedules are so varied, that there is an almost constant coming and going from our house.)

Post-college, I went from being a semi-independent adult to a completely independent adult.  I found a job a state away from where I grew up, and where most of my mom’s siblings live.  When I moved from home, I was suddenly responsible for not only meals, but also paying the water and electric bills (thankfully my sisters and I share the cost 😉 ), working on the yard, mowing the grass, and doing projects on the house (like the room we re-modeled last year.  I had to find new friends in a new city, find my new niche, and find a parish to call home.

A lot of my relatives live in the same city as me, but I see them mostly at holidays and a few times throughout the year.  I’m pretty close to a couple cousins my age, but other than that, I’m not very close with the relatives who are not my age.  Except my grandpa.  He and I are really close and I visit him almost every week.

My parents.  We’ve almost always been close.  They are my guiding force.  But their guiding force is much different now than it was before and during college. You know, when I was growing up, I made my decisions and choices based, in large part, on their advice.  Post-college, I still seek their guidance, but just not as often or for the same types of things.  I now ask for guidance in things such as finances, car choices, relationships, and job selections.  I deeply value my parents’ wisdom.  So that aspect hasn’t changed much.

My relatives spring on the holiday season as a chance to drill into my personal life.  Ever since high school or thereabouts, the holiday season has been a hard time in regard to my vocation/relationship status.  My relatives, especially one of my good-intentioned uncles, will ask “So are you seeing anyone????” OR “I’m just so surprised that a nice girl like you isn’t taken yet!” OR “How is your love life?”  To which I smile and say, “Time will tell, and it sucks in the meantime, but thanks for asking!” (*Dodge away to go chase the little cousins*)  It is very natural to feel sort of “left behind” when so many of my cousins both my age and younger are engaged or married.

When I get married, the dynamics of my family relationships will change both a lot and a little.  It will change a little insofar as a shift in conversation, which won’t be revolved as much around relationship talk or advice, but more so around growing in marriage and raising a family, and a lot insofar as my sisters and I won’t have each other in such close proximity (since we now share a house 😉 )  I think that will be one of the hardest changes.  We’ve talked about that and how the dynamics will change so much, and we know that it will be hard.  We won’t have late nights, long chats and spontaneous snacking or dance parties like we do now.  There will be a difference in scheduling visits, and perhaps less time with my extended and immediate family with more focus on my husband and growing our domestic church.  I don’t know the details.  I feel very scatter-brained talking about it.  It’s hard to say how the shift in conversation will change in the future.  But one thing I do know.  I love my family and I wouldn’t exchange them for the world.

What are your thoughts on “Adulting”?  Link up with Lindsay to join the conversation.  Don’t forget to leave us some comment love!  We love hearing your thoughts!!!!!

Join me here next week for talking about: Conversation Starters

And last but not least, we are working on the schedule for the rest of October – stay tuned!!

 

 

Quote of the Day

8 May

“One of things I’ve learned about marriage is that it is 100% give.  Or more like 110% give. You’ll be happier if you focus on giving instead of receiving.”  – My Grandpa

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