Monday, July 30, 2012

A Surprise for Hubby

So during the summer Jon gets off at noon on Fridays.  However it hasn't been like that since May, since this is the busy time of year for him at work. :P  The weather has also been nasty hot and a prego woman wasn't about to go outside a lot.  However my hubby loves it when we take a walk, go to a park, or do SOMEthing outside!  And I could tell it was just bumming him out.  So with the storm last week and a random nice Friday afternoon weather, I had it planned to try to make it the park!  He had no idea!  He was so excited when he called me at 12:20pm, saying "hi" over and over again no matter what I said.  He was so giddy and excited he was getting off like he should on Fridays!  So I was so pumped my surprise for him was going to work out! :)  Unfortunately we were low on bread so I couldn't make our picnic lunch so I asked him to pick some up on his way home....and that's when he got a little idea that I was planning something (but I didn't find this out until later). ;)

But luckily he had no idea WHERE.

He got home and I finished getting ready, secretly packing a small bag filled with things he might need for more "hiking" like for the park we were going to.  Then I went in the kitchen to start packing a picnic meal.  He said, "Where's my flip flops?"

Bummer.  I packed those.  Thinking he would just put on tennis since he was wearing socks still.

"Ummm, I put them somewhere." I had to reply.

"Did you hide them?"

"No, not exactly...."

"Are we going somewhere?"

"Hey, how did you know?"

"Well, you asked me to pick up bread.  So I sensed a picnic."

"But I eat toast for breakfast every morning, so I figured you would think it was just for my Sunday morning breakfast."

"Oh, well, I didn't think that.  So, are we going to our neighborhood park?"


The conversation went on and I decided to just be honest and answer his questions.  Why not?  He already knew.  He had a skip in his step and he was so pumped and excited.  He helped me finish getting ready and he just kept hugging me and he was cleaning up the dishes before we left.  He asked me if he should pack some stuff for the picnic and I told him we already had those things in my car ready to go, since we had left it in there after the fourth of July (blankets, chairs, and a frisbee). :)

Then he asked if there was anything else that we needed and I said I had it all ready.  We got everything and went out to the car.  He drove us to the park and he had never been there.  I had driven by before and thought of him right away.  It was so similar to a park he LOVES near where we used to live, so I was so excited to show him this one!

We found the perfect picnic location.  Sorry I have no pictures of this wonderful adventure.  I did have my camera nearby but we just spent too much time enjoying ourselves that I didn't take the time to get it out.  The only one I do have is in the car on the way there of Jon and his happy giddy spirit! :)

We enjoyed our sandwiches, apples, chips, and chocolate cake (that Jon packed at the end).  Then we just chilled on the blanket and watched the birds and clouds.  We let the breeze just keep us relaxed.  It was too perfect and wonderful!

Then we put our stuff in the car and headed down towards the water.  Jon helped his prego wife walk through the path of rocks to make sure I wouldn't fall.  We had fun just being out and enjoying the breeze.  The scene was just too cool.  Jon said, "Even a picture wouldn't give this sight justice."

We walked back up to a bench near our car to relax.  Then it was time to get into the car and drive around and see what else the park had to offer and then we drove back home so we could enjoy the evening just chilling at home.  Jon was just so happy.  He was so thankful I was willing to get out and do something with him.  I was so thankful for the random change in weather so we could make it happen! :)

Thank you Lord for that random change in hubby really appreciates it.  And so did I.  So worth it to see your spouse in such a happy mood.  It helped knowing we still had the REST of the weekend when we got back to the apartment.  Jon was in high spirits and enjoying the fact that he was able to get off early on Friday, like he's supposed to.

Here's a couple pictures of the park that we went to that I found on google images.  However it looks a lot different now due to the drought.  The picture of the water is where we "hiked" but there wasn't nearly that much water so we were able to walk where some of the water used to be.

Up on a hill is where we had our picnic
Like I said a lot of this water was NOT there

Where you hike down the hill to get to the water area

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Our Love Story Part Three:: Dating!

In case you didn't catch part one and part two of our love story. :)

So after that wonderful night of Jon asking me to be his girlfriend I was floating on a cloud like any other girl... :)  The exact date was Sunday, July 26, 2009.  (Wait a second, that's TODAY's date!  Nice timing on this post, huh?  Happy three years since we started dating Jon!) :)  But back to three years ago, I ran inside and sat down at my parent's desktop computer.  I was so delighted that I quickly got on Facebook and changed my relationship status (it was about time!).  My mom heard noises and came out of her bedroom and asked if everything was okay, and I turned around.  Apparently the look on my face she knew.

"Jon asked you didn't he?"

"Yess!" :)

And that was that.  She was happy for me and I couldn't sleep!  So I played around on the internet for awhile and then went to bed.  I remember thinking that I wish there was something to call us that wasn't boyfriend/girlfriend.  When this culture here's that, most think of a "trial relationship."  Two people just seeing if they are compatible for one another.  However that wasn't us at all!  We knew we weren't going to break up.  I wasn't going to date someone until I knew most likely I would end up marrying the man, so I never dated....until Jon. :)

The next weekend we took our first "official" date by taking a walk.  We sat on a bench and talked for a very long time.  It was fun to look up at the stars and just chat about everything.  We both still talk about it.  I mention this part of our story because it will come in handy to be reminded of it later in our love story. :)

Shortly after becoming a couple, Jon took two different trips far away and not near a phone hardly at all.  It was awful!  Your so excited to finally start using new terms based on your relationship and you can hardly get a hold of one another.  But during that time I spent more time with the Lord and making plans for his birthday gift.  His birthday was September 20th and I was already starting it!  It started in June.  Almost every day I tried to write a journal entry to write down what I thought about him and how much I appreciated him.  I included some things that we were talking about that day or something special we did that day together to never forget. :)  His gift included a binder filled with the journal entries, writings that we wrote to one another, emails, and text messages.  I kept it all so we could have a keepsake.  Jon's love language is words and it was the best way I could think of that would show him how much I loved him.

I'm looking at that journal now to help add moments of our dating because it's hard to remember the details.  In mid-late August my friend Kate and I went up to Ames to help him and his cousins paint their new duplex.  That was the first time I met some of his extended family.  It went smoothly and I was so thankful Kate came along. :)

August 25, 2009 is called the unplanned day.  It was a Tuesday and Jon and I would have dates on as many Tuesdays as possible.  I worked in Ankeny so it was our halfway point for each of us.  He would meet me after work and take me out to eat, then we would window shop or hang out at a park.  Before heading home we were having a good chat and suddenly he just leans over and kisses me.
It was unplanned because we weren't planning to kiss yet. : /
He apologized and I couldn't say anything.  I prayed a silent prayer.  I told him I loved him but we needed to discuss it.  So we did.  His words were encouraging and by the end he walked me to my car and then right there in the dark night standing near a parking lot light he started to lead me in dancing.  Dancing?  Jon? And then we will never forget what happened next.  We crack up about it now, but then it kinda freaked us out.  A cop had pulled up and with his flashing lights asked us what we were doing.  We showed him our ID's and then he told us that he was just checking up on parking lots in the area.  Apparently there has been a lot of late night problems in the parking lots in the area and it was his job to check up on what was going on.
So, our first kiss and the day ended with the cops checking our ID's....something never forgotten!

September 1, 2009 we visited my sister in Ankeny and I got a chance to see him play with my nephews.  After the kids went to bed we stayed up talking.  They encouraged us to get married sooner rather than later.  If we knew we were going to get married, might as well not make the dating time last longer.  See, Jon was wanting to wait until he graduated from college (which ended up being this past May 2012).  My sister and her husband said, it's just going to get harder.  And they were so right!  It was getting hard!  After the chat we both went to get in our cars but Jon jumped in my back seat.  He told me it would be better that way. :)  We had a good discussion about timing and what we thought.  We decided getting married the next summer (2010) would probably be the best.  So that met getting engaged before Christmas. :)

September 6, 2009 was the first annual Tometich family reunion.  My dad's extended family decided to start a tradition where we all tried to get together the day before Labor Day each year and hang out by the lake (where a few family members have houses nearby).  This marks the first time Jon met my extended family.  It was a nice way to meet them the first time.  Everyone just having a picnic buffet and playing outdoor games.

The extended family 2009 (Jon and I on far left side)

The next day Jon joined my family and I to Adventureland.  It was a lot of fun!  Here's a couple pictures from our day. :)

Jon and I on skychairs

Britney (friend), Me (holding nephew Max), brother Ryan, and Jon
The weekend Jon had his birthday my family was planning on traveling to Kansas City.  My nieces first birthday party was that weekend.  Jon's birthday is the day before my niece.  He was so flexible and willing to go to KC for his birthday, and I appreciated it so much!  But he wasn't able to travel down until he was finished with a few things before the weekend so him and I traveled down separately.  So before we left I handed him his birthday gift.  He started to read it while I finished packing up and getting ready to leave.  It was a fun three-hour trip to KC with him--just Jon and I.  Here's some pics from our trip.

My niece, Evelyn on her birthday

Jon getting sung to on his birthday!  (Fudge sundae)

I stole a bite! :)  

Jon and I on his birthday
 October is kind of a blur of what we did as a couple.  I know Jon visited a lot and we had a lot of fun.  We enjoyed the weekends but I had to work on Saturdays.  That was always a bummer but sometimes he would visit me at work with my mom when she came to get gifts for the grandkids.

Thanksgiving is when I met his extended family.  It was a wonderful time of games and just hanging out getting to know them.

Jon and I (Thanksgiving 2009)

The Table (Jon's extended family)

Jon's immediate family (Jon's mom and his sister & her family)
December went by so quickly!  I worked retail and it was definitely a busy time! Plus Jon met with my dad to ask if he could marry his baby girl. :)  The moment he returned from going out to discuss things with my dad, I was doing laundry.  He walked into the room and I said, "So?"  And he told me, "Let's go look at rings!" :)  So we did.  It was a Wednesday and I had the day off (since I worked Saturdays) and he had the day off since school was out and he didn't have to work.  So went to Anglo and looked at rings.  It was SO SO SO surreal.

*Yes, I know.  I helped him pick out the ring.  He wanted to make sure if he spent money on it, I would REALLY like it! :)

So Christmas 2009 I was engaged....but that's for a new part of our Love Story.

Stay tuned for part four:: We're Engaged! :) <3 <3

Monday, July 23, 2012

Love Story: Part Two "Just Friends"

Go to part one of our love story before you read this part. :)

I don't know exactly when we went from getting to know each other to becoming "just friends."  There was no official moment where we switched it over.  We started 'really' talking (thanks to Facebook) in January 2009, but hung out in person a couple times in March.  I would probably say around April is when it switched over.  May came and he was busy with finals during my birthday week.  So he gave me my birthday gift after a family time Memorial Weekend.  It was a stuffed animal that he made for me of my childhood dog, Jake.  I used to have a stuffed animal of "Jake" but it got lost in the sheets at a hotel once.  So he wanted to surprise me.  And surprise me he did! :)  That weekend for Memorial Weekend is when he met my family for the first time.  We went to my sister's in law's lake house, and he had to go out on the boat and the poor guy had to do all sorts of things to see if he "measured up."

His future family isn't small.  I have two sisters who are married and my brother who all were ready to question him and get to know the guy who was ahem, "just friends" with their little sister.

John, Scott, & Jonathan tubing

Here's a picture of the two of us chillin' on the boat...

Cracks me up cus Jon never lets his hair get that long anymore!  My sister put these pics up on her facebook and the caption says, "Mary and her "friend". :)  Which is so true because I clearly didn't want them to call him my boyfriend.  I still hadn't met his mom yet!  I'm one of those people who can't date unless I know the person well enough to know them, and that includes knowing their mom.  I wanted to be able to tell my future children that their Daddy and I focused on our friendship before anything else.  Why rush things, right? ;)  Jon and I both had situations in the past where we didn't like how we "treated" relationship(s).  We wanted this one to be different.  Heck, I was falling in love, who was I kidding?

We talked hours on end over the phone.  He was living 45 minutes away and he was busy working and so was I.  We tried to get together as often as possible and we have silly memories like whenever saying goodbye to each other the other person always said, "Hi" to hope to keep the conversation going.  However the next morning we would pay the price.  We were walking zombies but hopelessly loving the moments we could chat...and even better get together in person!  Weekends Jon did a lot of the traveling since I was living with my parents and he could crash overnight in their guest room.  I think it was sometime in late June that we were having a great conversation on the phone and was about to hang up and allow each other some hours of needed sleep.  However Jon just blurted out all the reasons he loved me.  See, we had talked before about not saying "I love you" until we could fully state the reasons why.  He wouldn't stop talking and telling me over and over he loved me and added more reasons why.  Then he finally gave me my chance.  I wished I had written it all down but I didn't.  I wasn't expecting it!  We weren't dating yet, but I knew he deeply cared for me.  Yeah, it might be weird that it wasn't official that we were dating yet but I feel it was the most purest thing.  It came from the heart and it was over the phone.  He didn't allow it to go to physical things.  He was sweet and sincere.

Then we hit July.

Something I didn't say before but now adding....
To celebrate the fourth of July Jon helped my family in the Urbandale parade for Two Men and a Truck.  Poor guy, never worked there and didn't know ANYONE but was willing to walk the hot parade.  That evening we went to see the Urbandale fireworks with our friends.  I remember when we found our "spot" and before we put down the blanket I turned and there was Jon up in a tree!  Jon is quite the climber, which I already knew from past conversations.  All I could think about was our kids, but luckily as a kid I was the one climbing the trees. :)  Before the fireworks I remember having a good chat with him and it was like no one else was around.  We were able to chat and it wasn't awkward or weird.  It was like a chat we would have over the phone, but awww now it's in person.  (ahem, "just friends" remember?) ;)

Later in July.....

One Sunday morning I was on the worship team and Jon was coming with his mom.  Afterwards we were going to go out for lunch and give me a chance to meet his mom.  After the service we went to El Rodeo and had a wonderful lunch.  I heard some funny stories about Jon and his family.  His dad past away when he was eleven so his family consisted of his mom and sister and his sister's family.  However I already knew his sister and her family!  After lunch we said our good-byes but Jon came back with me to my parent's house.  We hung out with my friend Kate and she could tell that we were definitely ready for dating by then! ;)  haha!

I walked them to their cars while we were talking....but then Jon and I continued to chat.  He was sitting in his car and I was standing outside of his car.  By the end of our conversation he said, "Mary I want to learn to serve you more and I would love it if you would be my girlfriend!"  Wait, what? :)

I replied with, "Of course I will be your girl friend!"

Stay tuned for Part Three:: Dating (finally official!) :)

Thursday, July 19, 2012

My parents own a business.....

My parents own a business called Two Men and a Truck, the franchise in Des Moines, Iowa...maybe you have heard of it? :)

I've learned a lot about owning a business and some good tips on great customer service.  I've also learned to be patient when unexpected things happen, because humans are not perfect and things will happen.  Unfortunately, mistakes happen.  It's nice to have a customer not get "all up in your face" about it too.  I also have experienced customer service myself.  I've worked in a store before, where I probably didn't always give the customer what they wanted nor responded the best way possible.  Some people are just not born quick thinkers.  I am one of those.  I like to analyze and think through my thoughts.  I tried my best, but sometimes you just can't make someone's day.

So I try to use those learning tools towards my every day life.

Times that I receive "interesting" customer service, I try not to get overly upset or worked up about it.  If I were in their shoes, would I want someone upset at me?  When I was working at the store did I appreciate people staying calm and not getting a tone just because I couldn't give them all the answers?  Hearing stories from my parents and since I worked in the office from time to time, is it not nice hearing customers being helpful and patient rather than upset over little things?  Things that the business just can't control.  Seriously, some things you just can't control.  

About a month ago Jon and I were planned to receive our bedroom furniture.  However they called ahead of time letting us know half of it wasn't able to come yet.  Yes, we were devastated but we knew it wasn't in our control, nor was it the lady on the phone's fault.  Why get mad at the lady on the phone that her job was just to tell us what was going to be able to be delivered?  It's not her fault.  How would her day be different if we would have acted as if it was her fault?

Yesterday we were supposed to receive the rest of the furniture.  We didn't.  I called the guy that was there to help us purchase it, and he told me it was all there just not sent to us yet.  He felt bad and I could tell in his voice he wasn't happy about it.  He said he would get it straightened out, and call us back.  The rest is supposed to come back in one week (this coming Wednesday).  Hallelujah!

In some circumstances, not known exactly why, some deliveries can take a month for you to get everything you purchased.  But how do you respond?

My response was to call the original guy to help us pick it out and "knew us" rather than some random person at the delivery phone desk.  Yes, it would've been nice to receive everything all at once.  My response was sad, frustration, but I never got "in their face" over the phone or made complaints.  I just stated the facts to find out how soon we could get what we needed.

And why can I respond this way?

Yes, because my God is bigger than any human mistake.
But also because.....
My parent's own a business....

Ready for 4th of July parade (2008)

Monday, July 16, 2012

Internet, Budgeting, and Thanking the Lord

Jon and I are so thankful for our "random neighbors" right now.  They don't have their internet secured and we are able to use it for free until...well, there's stop working.  Last week it decided to not work, so Jon tried to fix it for them (my hubby can do things I never thought possible!), but unfortunately couldn't make it happen.  So I was thinking it was time to start paying for our own internet.  However we returned from a night of celebrating nephew's birthday to find it working again!  Hooray!  We don't have to put more money aside for bills, for at least awhile longer, right?

Now that we're more settled in to our new apartment and his pay check automatically goes into our account and now we won't be paying for two apartments starting in August, we decided it was best to sit down and talk budget.  (My dad is probably clapping with glee right about now!  He is an accountant!)  But ugg, looking at our budget made us pretty depressed.  Our new living arrangement costs double where we used to, and it leaves us with nothing to put in our savings account with what Jon makes as of right now.  I can't lower our "spending money" (groceries, etc) because I know as soon as the baby comes we'll be adding a lot more items that will need to be purchased (diapers, wipes, etc).  For two SAVERS this is a hard concept to be okay with.  We would like to set money aside for future, higher cost items (furniture, a house, a family vehicle, etc).    So right now the prayers begin.  We give to the Lord and pray He will provide and we know trusting in Him is better than doubting and worrying.  Our God is an awesome God, and His unconditional love is all we need.  But lets allow Him to speak,

Malachi 3:10

New International Version (NIV)
10 Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. Test me in this,” says the Lord Almighty, “and see if I will not throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that there will not be room enough to store it.

2 Corinthians 9:7

New International Version (NIV)
Each of you should give what you have decided in your heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.

And that is where we begin to just trust and know God will provide our needs.  

Another thing that got brought up was the fact that we need to find our prenatal care and decide on a doctor/hospital.  We waited until Jon's insurance came through from his employer, and now we are starting the joy of exploring the care for our little Baby Kaisand! :)  Tried to do some calling last week, but with out internet, it was tough to find numbers and search the web.  What did we do before we had internet?  Yeah, for internet again!  I got tours set up to look at the two hospitals here in Cedar Rapids for next Saturday and looking forward to getting things figured out and planned.  This poor baby will have quite the story of events from when it was growing inside me!  So much highs/lows of searching for prenatal care, hospital decisions, moving, new jobs, new town, etc.  I just thank the Lord and praise Him for I know He has it all in His hands.  It's really allowed me to sit back and know it's going to be okay.

The Lord will give us a sweet baby no matter when or who helps bring it into this world! :)  

This weekend we travel back to Ames to start the check out process of our first apartment.  I'm okay to see it go, but sad to know it means we're farther away from family and friends.  I sometimes forget how far we are from everyone until it's time to travel to visit them!  Our new apartment is so spacious, bright, and nice that it's not depressing at all.  I'm so thankful for that!

Jon and I have so many things to be thankful for this year, and the year is only half over!  We can't imagine how much more when the year comes to an end!  We're so excited to meet our Little Kaisand and looking forward to the day we can have you meet him/her. ;)

Hope everyone is having a wonderful summer!  I know I am, but I would like to ask for the heat to go away some.  Just sitting in air condition I'm sweating!!!  Even after eating bowls and bowls of watermelon!  mmmmm! :)

Monday, July 9, 2012

KC visit to meet newest family member!

My sister and her hubby recently adopted the newest addition the family! :)  His name is Abraham Christopher Behrens and he was born on June 20th.  My parents, brother, my hubby and I went to Kansas City this last weekend to surprise them to meet the little guy.  It was so nice to see everyone and have time to cuddle with the little peanut before they come up in August to visit.  Babies grow up so fast!  The first time I held him, it kinda hit me all over again....soon I will be doing this with my baby.  They start out so tiny and fragile.

first time cuddling the little guy

He was such a sweet baby.  He makes such sweet noises when he sleeps.  His cry is also sweet (maybe it's different in the middle of the night though?).  :)  He loves to cuddle and I am certainly okay with that!  Liz and Scott did a great job hosting a lot of people and made us great food Saturday night.  Kept pregnant woman happy that's for sure! :)

On Sunday we visited the Behren's church and then went out to lunch and oh good food again! :)  Then back at the house enjoyed more time with the kids and watching sweet Abraham have time cuddling with everyone. :)

My mom had the idea of a photo shoot while he was alert before we left.

Big sister wants in on it too!

My parent's and the KC grandkids!

The trip was a great success and fun time! :)  I got some helpful tips from my sister on having a newborn, since it was fresh on her mind.  And I am certainly excited to see what the future holds for our big extended family!  Time goes by so fast and so in the mean time....I'm kicking up my swollen ankles and enjoying the pictures from the weekend. :)

Hope everyone had a fun fourth of July and wonderful weekend.

Reveal Party: telling family the gender

Friday evening was the Reveal Party where we told family the gender of Baby Kaisand!  It was so fun to gather with family and eat and eat and eat and enjoy hearing what people were guessing.

I made a list of "tales" that might help people guess if they were having a hard time to decide.  My brother in law, John, of course had to read each one with me beside him to figure out what he thought....

checking how my leg hair is growing...
After every one got a chance to guess they put on a name tag (I guess boy/girl).  Then we had a yummy meal of cheeseburgers (toppings from my mom's garden), homemade potato salad, baked beans, watermelon, chips, and lemonade.

thanks mom for capturing us with food in our mouth!

my brother

Kid Table, all the kids wondering what gender is next for the cousins!
(My parents are going to need a bigger kid table!)

After eating, Jon couldn't wait any longer to hold on to the secret!  Time for cupcakes.  We handed the kid's there cupcakes (so they wouldn't have to wait any longer) and then gave each of the adults one.  Only one adult cupcake had the gender color inside. :)

"We are guessing boy!"

"We are guessing girl!"

On the count of three they all got to start eating.  My sister had the one cupcake with the color inside, and once my hubby gives me the okay I will share the rest of the pictures of the reveal. :)  After the cupcakes were eaten, I made sure I had plenty of dessert that wasn't gender specific and enjoyable. :)  Brownies and peanut butter blondies (both of Jon's favorite desserts that I have made).

What do you think Baby Kaisand will be?

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Our Love Story::Part 1 We Meet

The best way to start the story is to go way back to the beginning.  Now remember this is from my point of view, so maybe you could elbow Jon a little bit and get him interested in adding his input at some point. :)

My family changed churches right after I finished 8th grade...and let me tell you it wasn't easy for me.  Just ask my parents.  When it gets brought up they sort of give that huge moan or sigh when asked how I did with that transition.  I wasn't too excited about it.  However that summer was when I heard the Gospel and asked Jesus into my you can only imagine my human mind trying to figure everything out.  I'm pretty sure I have my testimony on this blog somewhere so maybe I can search for it and link you to it.  Until then just know that it was a day my two big sisters let me in on "super duper big girl conversation" and I was delighted I finally got to be in the bedroom to hear all those behind closed doors things my sisters shared with each other after all these years (my sisters and I are 5 and 7 years apart).  Anyways, back to attending the church.  It was a hard transition because I wanted to be a part of the cool youth group where I knew everyone in it, instead I was going to start attending a church where I hardly knew anyone...pretty much just one in the youth group.  (Who later becomes my best friend, hmmm God works in super duper awesome ways!) :)

Kate and Mary

So this wonderful church my family started to attend, my friend helps me get involved with the children's ministry (VBS) and I get really involved in the youth group and enjoying friendships.  Through my high school years I become home schooled (middle of sophomore year) and my life forever changed then too!  I was able to focus hours in the Bible and learning more about God.  Because the couple years prior to that (right after that summer I asked Jesus into my heart) I went through a hard core depression and it wasn't pretty.  It was just awful!  The LORD really brought me out of the mud and into His arms!  I was so delighted with how much I now knew about the Bible that it became easier to get involved in helping out in the youth and with the children's ministry.  During this time I met another homeschool gal who now her and I are best of friends and pretty much like sisters. We did ministry together with kids and we were both known as the typical "babysitters on call" since we were available and not busy with school or other activities.  (Like I said, I mention all these details to help in the rest of the love story so keep on reading...hope I haven't lost you yet.)

Mary and Britney

After I graduated I stayed living with my parents and attended DMACC (Community College not far away) for one semester.  Missing homeschool schedule and knowing I wanted to be a stay at home mom made me really want to just start working full time where I could be putting money into a savings account.  At church I wasn't really finding my "place" anymore now that all the college-aged/singles were gone and I was starting to search what ministry I should be involved in.  There was a singles/college group that met on Sunday mornings, really small, but there.  I attended it....and let me tell you....sometimes we would have ten people in the class and that was exciting!  So if you are new or just visiting the class you are very well noticed.  One Sunday I happened to walk in and notice three guys sitting next to each other.

Each week we say our name and a random fact about us so when it got to the guys I was interested in hearing who they were...where did they come from?
All Mary remembers from that morning: First guy introduces himself, "I'm Mark...." and the next guy, "I'm Luke...." and the last new guy, "I'm Jon..."
Wait, what? Did I just hear it correctly or does it sound like the Gospel boys just came by our class today???
And that's all I remember from them that morning. :P
All Jon remembers from that morning: He notices a cute girl in the class, but doesn't say anything to her.  He remembers her brother mentioning how he was in a commercial when he was little and thought that was really interesting.

And why was Jon attending that church that morning?
Because his sister and her family attends there.  His brother in law is a Pastor there, and Jon was visiting his sister.  Which explains why they were pointing me out in the church service (after that Sunday School class) and asking if he saw anyone in class that he might be interested in.

Jon and I are both not ones to confront someone when we "like them" if we don't even know them.  So both of us just nod at this part of the story and know it's nothing to big of a deal.  However his family (knowing mine real well) is telling him to talk to me, even ask me he makes the promise he will the next time he visits.

Did he ask me?

The funny thing is the next time he visits, he has told me he prayed I wouldn't be there so he wouldn't have to ask me out.  His prayers were answered.  I wasn't there.  Why not?  Because remember that friend I made at church where we babysat a lot together?  Well, her dad started a church plant that I was really interested in.  So I had changed churches and Jon's prayers were answered.

However there is this youth group mission's trip that the youth goes every year and I was able to go even after not being in high school anymore.  Thank the Lord!  So I had to come back to the church for a leaders meeting with the youth leader, and who stops me on the way to the office?  Not only but Jon's sister.  She was asking me if I remembered that Sunday way back when her brother was visiting.  His name is Jonathan....(I gave a weird look).  So right away she gets the impression I wasn't interested.  Why the strange look?  Because do I dare get interested in a Jon?  My family already has enough of that!  My grandpa's name was John.  My dad's name is John and my oldest sister married a John.  That would just be too confusing!!  But the look I made to his sister didn't mean I wasn't interested in learning more about this Jon.... ;)

So I go on the mission's trip and the summer (2008) goes on not hearing anything again about this Jon.  That fall his sister starts talking to me on facebook about her brother.  I make sure I let her know that the look on my face was because of the "John issue" and she totally understood! (She knows my family remember?)  Which is crazy....knowing your future sister in law and her family before you knew your hubby? :)  But then of course I had no idea.....  So she gives me a request to add her brother as a friend on facebook.  So I did.

It would be funny to hear Jon's point of view here, but since I don't have him sitting here while writing this all I can say was he was pretty shocked to get online and see that I asked to be friends on facebook.  He was interested in getting to know me, but didn't think I thought anything of him.  This gave him one glimpse of that! :)

So in my facebook stuff it helps me see that this was around October/November when we started emailing back and forth on facebook.  However Jon doesn't facebook very much so I remember sending him a note and not hearing back for a couple weeks so I thought he didn't think much of me.  In yet, that wasn't the case at all!  Luckily January 2009 came around he got more on top of things and realized, "I better focus on getting back to this girl or else she won't think I like her or want to get to know her!"

He gave me the sweetest couple sentences message that was so encouraging.  I sent it to my sisters and close friends if they asked me about Jon.  The response I got made me act like a giddy little girl! :)

One week night in February my small group went up to Ames to Cornerstone Church to visit their college ministry.  Since Jon was attending ISU (in Ames) and attended that church I had mentioned we were going....maybe we could meet up there.  Our first time seeing one another in person since that Sunday School class, but this time knowing we were interested in one another. :)  Ohh boy!

We met up and it was quite awkward at first since I didn't tell my small group who he was, so it felt like a "tag a long" for him.  ooops.  But luckily most of them knew who his sister was so that helped, some what.  Afterwards we just separated ourselves from everyone else while they went off to chat with others, we took that time to discuss person.  Can you believe it?  No more trying to read and understand text (from being online).  We were able to see body language.  The next day we made plans to see other (with tagging our friends along), but I got the stomach flu. :P

The next couple weekends he traveled down to come visit me (with my friends around).  I wanted him to see me with my friends and see who I was with out the weird awkward pauses. :)  And during those times we felt bad that both times that got planned to hangout my parents were out of town and that was certainly NOT planned!  He informed me that he wanted to have a good chat with them so they knew who their daughter was talking to for all those hours in the night online....and on the phone. :)

Stay tuned for Our Love Story part two:: "Just Friends" :)

Monday, July 2, 2012

Moments before our baby....

Jon and I are spending as much time together as possible before this baby comes.  We know our time is limited before we come official forever parents.  Unfortunately I can't do everything I would like to do, thanks to the heat and everything else that comes along with pregnancy.  But I am fortunate to have a hubby willing to kick back and chill on the couch and kill bugs for me. :)

I'm working on learning the area and where everything we could ever want, so when I'm hauling a baby around it will be a lot less chaotic.

Friday afternoon we spent the time shopping the mall nearest to our apartment and enjoying each other's company.  Younkers was having a huge sale so we were delighted to get quality stuff at a decent amount. :)  We like to watch our money and love to save it for future spending.  However we're learning it is important to enjoy the blessings God provides for us.  That includes making our apartment both welcoming and inviting.

We're getting a new bedroom set so we needed to get new bedding.  I've learned that a huge comforter is just not the way to go, and dry cleaning only isn't as handy as it used to be (my dad owns one) since we're not as close to family anymore.  So I decided to go the direction of getting a quilt.  Jon and I picked one out that is a solid color and we can dress it up with pillows.  I'm quite excited to make the bed and see how it all looks.  Now we just have to wait for it to get here.
Here's a picture of our nice, new bedding that we got quality but on sale. :)  Hallelujah for yellow dot sale at Younkers!

Won't that bright green look great with some accent pillows and fun lamps?  I just CAN'T wait to finally start decorating this apartment!  We still have lots of organizing and unpacking to do since we are waiting for the rest of our furniture to get here.  I have kept my birthday money aside to decorate and have fun with the decorating!  I just can't wait!

But until then I will stay living in this nice 3-bedroom apartment with no bedroom furniture and my socks and underwear in a clean basket of clothes in the closet.  But I know until then I can stay cuddling with hubby and feeling baby kicks, knowing our sweet little one is growing and being quite silly I think!

Oh yeah, and that full sink of clean dishes my hubby was willing to wash yesterday. :)  Happy 4th of July week!  Looking forward to it!  Jon gets both Wednesday and Thursday off and we're so excited!!