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Saturday, July 27, 2013

Where We Live Now

Hi.  This is where we live now.

I'm totally kidding, but we did just spend 6 days away.  I'm super excited to spill the details of our amazing trip.  

I'm currently working on a "Vacation Update," so hold on tight.

Have a great weekend, we've missed you!

T., H., S., & N.

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Dream Dinners, An Anniversary Celebration

    I wanted to talk a little bit more about how we celebrated our anniversary because it was just really memorable and fun.

 Tim bought me a gift card to a place called Dream Dinners. I wasn't exactly sure what it was at the time, but it involved us and food and cooking so I was already on board.

     As it turns out, Dream Dinners involves attending a session at one of their locations,  fixing several meals at once, and freezing them for later use.

     We had a Saturday Morning wake-up call at about 8:15 (which is EARLY for us) so we could make it to our session by 9:00.  (sidenote: we jammed to MC Hammer's Can't Touch This on the way, that helped).  

Here's how it works: 

      You use their online form to select your meals. Once you arrive, they give you an apron and your set of "recipe" cards (we had 6). Each station is labeled with the meal and “recipe” or list of ingredients. Once you arrive at your station, you simply follow the instructions on the card to put your meal together. Once you've finished all the recipes, they package it all up nicely (with the baking instructions), and you place it all in the freezer.

      Even though this was super fun and convenient, we both agreed it is going to be something we reserve for birthdays/anniversaries/Christmas. We were able to use their introductory offer, but in the future it will cost about $150-$200 for 36 servings (12 meals of 3 servings). While I budget $100 a week for us, that also has to include cleaning supplies, toiletries, and other household items not to mention breakfast and lunch items (and produce)!

Plus I LOVE grocery shopping (it's weird, I know). I also love meal-planning so it just doesn't make sense for us to do it on a regular basis as a family.

     I could not believe the number of locations they have (7 in Ohio)! If you can find a Dream Dinners location near you, I'd definitely recommend this for a gift, girls outing, or fun date (if you've got money to spare)!

     We spent the rest of the day looking at estate/yard sales and working around the house. We finished the evening off with chicken sandwiches on yummy pretzel bread (from our Dream Dinners date)!  

Here's a really terrible recent photo of our shrimp with parmesan risotto.  On paper plates, cause we' fancy like that.

Love & they have you put garlic in everything,

Friday, July 19, 2013

It's Madness, Madness, I tell you!

  So.  Here's this.

     Someone stole my checkcard information, and made about $6,500  in charges.  What's almost hilarious about the whole thing is that they made several hundred dollars worth of  donations to various charities.   Were they trying to improve their karma?

With that being said, Tim and I are just in this really, really good place right now.

     The other day, I had a meeting at church.  There's a big window in the office, and I saw Tim's arrival (we had driven separately), and I just kept thinking, "Smile at me through the window...Smile at me through the window..."  And he did, and then I just know, watching to see if he would walk by again (and he did).  I don't know why, but I felt 15 again, and it was pretty much the cutest thing ever.

Right now, it is 1am.  Tim is (quietly) snoozing beside me, and I just get the distinct impression that everything is going to be okay.

There is enough grace and tenderness and mercy to go around.  

     As I was scrolling through "my" transactions, I noticed one from an "LA Nail Salon."  It could not have been me because when I got a manicure, I used a Groupon instead of my check card, thank you very much.  I was SO MAD thinking about how those jerks used my card to get their nails done.

Then I remembered I got a pedicure this week.  So...yea.

I hope you have a Good day.  We will.

Love, and (from looking at my account) apparently we're going to Spain?  Or Austria?  Wait, no we're not.   We're buying a boat?
H.  (it is still, H, right?)

Thinking about both of these helped SO much.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Influence Conference 2013

I just wanted to stop by and share some exciting news with you all.  I just purchased my ticket to The Influence Conference 2013 in Indianapolis!!!!!  I did not go last year, and I SO WISH I would have.  With more time to focus on blogging, and a call to do so, I'm so excited about what God's going to do at this conference!  The world needs more empowered, educated women using their INFLUENCE to reach the world for Jesus.  

Love and now I need a room mate, 


Saturday, July 13, 2013

Tom + Chee, could you call this a Restaurant Review?

     Every year, my friend Courtney comes to visit from Kansas.  This year, I had the chance to sneak away to a yet-to-be-discovered part of town.  Per her recommendation, we ate at a cute little place called Tom  + Chee.  Bringing fame to this side of the Ohio River, Tom + Chee is a "gourmet grilled cheese" joint that actually started in a little tent on Fountain Square and expanded after having been featured on the show Shark Tank (one of Courtney's favorites)!

Or did they expand first and then become famous?  Answers please, Courtney! 

If I tell you that this place was "the bomb,"  will you still continue reading?

Probably?  Ok.

This place was the bomb!  ;)

     I ordered the Pep. & Chee (pepperoni, tomato sauce, and cheese on sourdough) and a cup of cheeseburger soup. It was fantastic. However, I do wish I would have ordered a tomato-based soup so I could dip my sandwich in it (rookie mistake, we'll get em' next time)!

We also split a grilled cheese donut. That's right. A donut. It looked like this...

(That's right.  I took that wonderful, oddly-colored photo).  

and it was super delicious, and it's okay if you don't believe me because that just means more for us.

Yum. Yum. Double Yum. I would totally eat here again.

 This is Courtney with Corey Ward, one of the restaurant's founders! (and super nice guy)! 

I just love finding new little joints, and supporting local businesses.

Love and where to next?


Special thanks to my BFF  for letting me steal some of her iphone photos...
Oh the technology we have at our hands these days!  

Friday, July 12, 2013

Ushed & Gushed: An Anniversary Post

I have ushed and gushed about our Anniversary for almost a solid week, now.

Honestly, the past several months have been cloudy with a side of mild depression.  If you've been there, you is hard to sincerely feel anything.

So, with that being said, I think one of the reasons why I have just loved anticipating this anniversary is because... 

it feels so good to actually be excited about something again!!!  

     I have never before in my life had so many questions (BABIES?  HEALTH INSURANCE?  JOBS?), but I am equally as confused  intrigued as I am happy, and that's mostly because of Tim.

     Sometimes, the call to write is so strong, I can feel it in my teeth.  It keeps me up at night.  I am a hoarder of words, and a lot of those words get all jumbled together.

The other day, I had this quote rolling around in my head.  I just couldn't put it all together.

And then we had dinner with friends, and I mentioned the book Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close...

and there it was...and I just thought it was so fitting.

Love, and my new world has a red front door,

Happy Anniversary, Timothius G. Young.  You're my guy.

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Yet ANOTHER Anniversary Post

Well folks, tomorrow is our 5 year anniversary, and I've come to realize that in all the years I've been blogging, I've near really talked about our wedding.  I mean, come on...seriously!?!?  I started out with a huge post about our wedding. I ended up pulling out our entire album, and spending like, an hour sorting through photos. It was super fun, but way more time-consuming than it needed to be.

I wanted to post approximately 843 more pictures, and but will settle for 700 instead.  I'm kidding.  Gotta save some for year six, kids.


The Wedding

     We had our wedding at the same church Tim's mother/grandmother attended. My parents have been regular attenders for about 40 years. Tim and I met at this church and had our first kiss in the parking lot (now THAT'S a story for another time). My sister and her family are regular attenders as well.

 I just love this church, and I hope I'm 89 years old and still attending.

     I actually saw Tim before the wedding.  I just knew I would be too anxious to get to the reception, and wouldn't really enjoy the photo session after the ceremony.  He waited at the front of the sanctuary, and I walked in to meet him while the photographer snapped a few shots.
     Thinking back, I sort of wish it would have been just the two of us.  All the candid shots are really awkward looking.  It's a fun memory, but such an intimate moment to share with strangers holding cameras-haha.

I am SO glad I saw him beforehand, though.  I was just more relaxed that way.

The Reception

     We had the reception at a (somewhat newly renovated) local middle school, and the menu included typical “cook-out” food. Pulled pork and all the fixin's. Our favors were Pez dispensers, and Tim and his family provided much of the live music.

Instead of the father/daughter dance, I sat with my dad while he played Louis Armstrong's, “What a Wonderful World” on the piano.

     I attached Star Wars pins to my garter as a surprise for Tim. We also attached Starbucks Gift Cards to the bouquet and garter and opened “the toss” up to everyone under 40. Many of our friends were married at the time, and we wanted to avoid the awkwardness that I KNOW many people feel standing in a crowd full of 5 year olds waiting to catch the garter/bouquet. Plus, we liked the idea of including all our friends. In the end, a set of TWINS actually ended up catching the garter/bouquet.

One of my favorite memories from the reception was actually just staying until everything was being “torn down.” I always said I wanted to leave before everything was cleaned up to avoid seeing “the end," you know. It was actually nice because I just felt such a sense of relief that it was over (I know that sounds terrible, but you know what I mean),  and by the end- it was only our true “die hard” friends and family leftover. It was all very casual.  We snapped some silly photos (NONE of which I can find), and called it a day.

     We had so much love, help and support during our big day.  I only hope I can pay it forward when all of our children are grown!  

The Honeymoon

     Tim and I spent the night at a hotel and finished the trip up to Mackinac Island, Michigan the next day. We rented a little condo there, and basically just “played house” for an entire week. We took a carriage tour of the island, bought lots of fudge, went putt-putting, road our bikes around the whole island, and slept in until our hearts content.

Love and it's all I can do to stop from planning a "vow renewal ceremony,"

*All Wedding Photos courtesy of Dunaway Photography (I know some of them are blurry, I can assure you they aren't this way in real life.  I think I have "manipulated" some of them too much.  You the five years we've been married...resizing them...taking screenshots of screenshots and such.  Let's be honest, some of these I snatched right off of Facebook.  Of course, the digital ones are tucked away somewhere but after all the sorting and looking I did beforehand well, ain't nobody got time for that).

Sunday, July 7, 2013

An Anniversary Post!!!

     This week, Tim and I will celebrate our 5 year anniversary. Hooray for us!

      I'm really excited about this one. Five years of marriage just sounds awesome. We've got a fun vacation planned, and we're going to start partnering together on some business ventures in the future. Needless to say, I'm pretty stinking excited about Year Six.

     I wanted to write a list of 5 Things I Love About Tim, but I felt a little cheesy. Instead, I wanted to make the list a little more broad. As in, “If you are not married yet, these are qualities you need to look for in a man.” I just happened to be married to a man who embodies them because I am just that lucky and just that smart. ;)

     I also want to add that I was terrified of getting married. I was so afraid that all our little habits and quirks would come out in full force once we were living together 24/7, and we'd be at each other's throats. 

      Tim was level-headed enough to explain that we “might” actually discover even more things we liked about each other. 

I'm happy to tell you that it's totally true. 

 Maybe I “knew” all these qualities were there...I just didn't appreciate them until later.

 (Read: #'s 2, 4, & 5)

1~ He's a really good cook. It's okay to marry a man who can't/doesn't cook. I just wanted to throw that one in. Although, it must be noted that you need to marry “ a helper.” It is just that simple. Marry someone who helps.  

2 ~ He is a navigational genius. I am convinced that you could give him a 1957 chevy, a bloodhound, a ham sandwich, and a street address in Alaska, and he would be there by dinnertime. It's not even about “knowing where to go” or “being too proud to ask for directions.”

I think what I'm getting at is that he is a talented problem-solver. Traffic on the highway? He'll find a way around. Accident on the interstate? Back roads.

     When we went to Hawaii, he found a snorkeling excursion that was not part of our cruise line (more fun, so much cheaper)! We took the public bus. He had us criss-crossing all over that island, but I'll be darned if we didn't make it, and it ended up being one of the best days of my entire life.

3 ~ He is like Jesus in the sense that he is “tough & tender.”

Tim has an “animal voice.” He loves animals. It is a voice he only uses when he is speaking to animals. Even just this past weekend, he spent several minutes loving on his mom's cat and going, “Hey, Kitty-Kitty. Be my friend, Kitty-Kitty.”

It was the cutest thing ever.

Speaking of tough/tender...check out this adorable (albeit blurry)  pic. of my husband playing with the little kids at church. Holy-my-biological-clock-is-ticking, Batman!

     On the other hand, I remember one time, someone knocked on our door at like, 10pm, and I was like, “Holy Smokes. It's a murderer!!!” I was pretty much huddled in the corner whereas Tim was the door...all broad, “WHAT DO YOU WANT?” But he didn't yell. He was like...all quiet and calm and intimidating.

Tim Young is not happy when you startle his wife at 10 o'clock at night, and I love that about him.

Let's be honest. It was hot. Ladies. Don't act like you don't know what I'm talking about.

 4 ~ He is one of the hardest working men I know, rivaled only by my dad and both my grandfather's, and even then- it's a four-way tie for first place. I always knew he was the kind of guy who could “hold down a job,” but I did not realize he was the kind of guy who would dig a job up from under the ground until several years into our marriage. It takes a determined man to find a job, but it takes an incredibly special man to create one.

5 ~ He never complains about spending time with my family. Let me say that one again. He never complains about spending time with my family. Even if it means helping move a piece of furniture or putting the cab back on my dad's truck. He never looks at his watch. He never asks, “When are we leaving?” He never whines, “...but we were just over there last week....” He never complains.

With that being said, thank you so much for reading as I gush about my husband.

If you are married, I encourage you to make your own list. It's super fun and helpful on those, “I'm ready to put you in a headlock” days. Come on. We all have them.

If you are not yet married, I encourage you to stick to your guns, ladies. Remember: Has Job. Loves Jesus.

Love and just...hooray!

Holly & Tim

Other Anniversary Posts here and here.  

Happy Wives Club

Thursday, July 4, 2013

The Day we Celebrate

Wishing a Happy Fourth of July to You & Yours! 

I'm taking a long weekend to spend with family.  Will be back to blogging next week!  
Lots of love, and we're hunting down some fireworks! 

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

July = More to Love

Need more to love this July?

Here's an idea.  Old Navy Vintage Tees.

I maybe have...9....?

     They are so comfy, and you can get them to match ANYTHING.  I am curvy/large busted (yowza, am I right)?  ;)   So, I'm learning that I MUCH prefer shirts/tanks that have a long/tunic-type fit.  I'm 5'4, and I'm very pleased with how these fit...just so you know.

Here's the color I'd like to get next because....SUMMER!!!

Is there a better reason?

Here's how I like to wear my coral colored one...

Here's a SMALL sampling of what it looks like in real life.  Get a load of my little friend, there!!!

So, what color are you going to get?  

Love, and I was not compensated for this post.  I've just been back for 3 days, and I'm already out of ideas...



Monday, July 1, 2013

Hello, Cuteness

Since we're just getting back up and running...I'm trying to ease us all back into this whole "blogging thing."

Easy. Easy.

I thought it might be fun to do a few posts on things I'm really loving right now.

(This is also code for, "I'm blogging again, and the other day, I freaked out because of the pressure," i.e. what if I don't have anything worthwhile to SAY!?!?!)

You know.  Typical.  ;)

Without further ado.

Happy First Day of July!  If you're looking for an adorable way to get organized this month, you need to head on over to Hello, Cuteness and check out their free calendars.
What? I have a dentist appointment on Thursday?  That's ok. Because I have Adorable Lemons on my calendar, and those Adorable Lemons are giving me courage.   Thank you, Adorable Lemons! 

(I just read that 2013 is the last year that calendars will be get up on it)!

      They also have lots of other cute freebies (the packing list, anyone?) and some other printables at reasonable prices.

So get to printing!

Love, and more ink cartridges,

*Thanks be to Heather Jess for first sharing this discovery with me!