December 31, 2009

12.31.09 Farewell 2009

"For last year's words belong to last year's language. And next year's words await another voice. And to make an end is to make a beginning." - T.S. Eliot "Little Gidding"

Two-Thousand-Nine has been a year of unforgetable memories. From graduating college to getting married, it has been full of excitement and adventure to say the least.

Here are a few high-lights from 2009

Living with a couple of my child-hood best friends making priceless memories
Making new friends whom we absolutely ADORE (the Andersons)
Driving to Colorado for Spring Break
Graduating from Clemson
Having water in Lake Hartwell so we could actually enjoy it
Staying in Washington State for 10 days with Mere & DP
Getting Engaged to my Best Friend (7.20.09)
Marrying my Best Friend (10.3.09)
Spending a week in Costa Rica
Getting a Tattoo
Spending the holidays with both of our families

December 29, 2009

12.10 through 12.15

Okay...finally! More Pictures! (:

December 10
Bye-Bye BlackBird
(okay, it's not actually a black bird...but Mike & I just watched Public Enemies recently and that song comes to mind...)

December 11
This cute little guy loves to play on our porch. He does remind me a little of the squirrels at Clemson though ... look at how close I was able to get to him!

December 12
My BEST's first wedding shower -- a Christmas shower! (:
*Bridesmaids (minus Jenna and Allison)

December 13
Melbug's S'MORE hangin' on the Christmas tree!

Ornament Swap
Coffee Underground
Julie, Kristi, Carolyn, Melissa, Whitney, Elizabeth, Jenna, Ashleigh, Me

December 15
My ornament from the swap with the girls! (Thanks Julie, I LOVE it!)

December 28, 2009


Welp, now that the Holiday season is over I WILL post more pictures! Mike & I have just come through our *first* married Christmas (and Birthday) season (: We had a blast and fortunately were not too worn down at the end of it all.

Both of our families are amazing, so it was pretty easy for us to split our time between them (and it helps that they are only 10 minutes apart!) We spent the day on Christmas eve with my family...going through the usual "Christmas Eve Routine" (one side for lunch, the other for dinner). On Christmas morning Mike & I woke up and opened gifts with just the two of us. How nice it was! -- even though our Christmas morning was just a simple time with the two of us, we decided we'd make it a tradition now so when we have a family we'll be able to spend that time together in the midst of all the running around. Then, we (and I mean Mike ... he's the waffle maker) made waffles and hung around until about noon when we headed over to spend the day at the Martin house! Gram and Grandmother were there, so we got to spend a little Christmas time with them too! Around 8:30PM or so, we headed over to the McCraw household to see what Santa left for us there and to open family gifts.

My birthday is the 26th...and Oh, how I love My Birthday. We woke up around 9:00 and trecked over to Dunkin' Donuts in our PJs for Birthday Breakfast! (: YUUUMMM! (I think Dunkin' will be a family birthday tradition!) Oh yea, I opened my birthday gifts from Mike first NIKE running shorts & some "Smart-weezy" socks! We lazed about looking over Christmas gifts and pictures until lunch time when we met both of our families and a few friends for lunch at Sam's in Ft. Inn. After lunch, most of the lunch crowd came to my parents house to shoot shot guns / pistols with us. We shot for most of the afternoon & when it got too cold I took it to the house for a warm shower. Mike, being the sweet husband that he is let me sleep a little while he, my dad & brother cleaned the monster of a pile of guns we'd used. We finished the celebration with family dinner (both sides) at Honey's house. She cooked my favorites: meat loaf, Lima beans, fried okra, apple salad & pound cake with lemon icing!

December 23, 2009


New Obsession: Pioneer Woman. (Thank you MaryGene!) I love love love her blog & the Tasty Kitchen section from her web site! (: I can't wait to try some of her recipes...hmmm I'll probably start blowing our grocery budget so I can cook some of them!

Check it out!

Oh, PS: I will post pictures TODAY!! We've just been super busy with all of the holiday bustle....but I'll put them on the computer and upload them today! (:

December 14, 2009

11.30 through 12.9

Day after Thanksgiving Christmas decorations!

Welcome December, Welcome!


On a walk to pay our rent ... Looked like spring!


We Did It. And We Are In It To Win It.

Congratulations Ashleigh & Chase! I am so happy & honored to be a part of y'alls BIG DAY!
Love Love Love!

Gettin' in the Christmas Spirit with our holiday napkins (:

More Presents "under" (or should I say Around) the tree!

Happy Birthday Dad!
Makin' Fruit Cake with Mimi & Gram (dad loved it...said it was "Jam Up!")


More pictures to come when the computer will let me upload them?
The last Sunday of November / first Sunday of December my dad's whole side of the family (whoever can make it) gathers at Honey's house for finger foods & good family fellowship (: This is a picture of Honey's snow village that literally takes up the whole back wall in her play room! (It grew about 15% from last year because after Christmas the houses in her collection were marked WA Y and she bought a LOT of them!) We LOVE it. It lights up (obviously) and even has different sounds that go with it!

December 8, 2009

In It To Win It

Oh man. Yesterday is definitely one for the books. I feel that I must keep track of it because it's already become something that Mike & I are laughing at. "Such is life" was most definitely the motto.

Here goes:

Sunday Mike cleaned his car over at OD & Cat's house. It was a little muddy from our latest off-roading adventure (although recent rains had smeared some of the mud around) -- and needed a little maintenance. The boys (being OD & Mike) drove the car up on the lifty-things and spent all day under the hood & cleaning. The car not only was sparkly clean when they finished but, it ran superbly! (: We made it all the way home with no trembling breaks and no "pulling" feeling (like the E-break was up). All is well, right?!

Monday morning Mike left for work as usual - in his newly polished Edmund & called about 15 minutes later asking if I could come pick him up. Being the new wife that I am, I was a bit concerned - although he didn't sound panicked at all (I'll admit, I thought he'd gotten in a wreck!) Anyway, he had pulled off into the first parking lot he came to because the "engine was coming out of the hood." So I leave the house & pick him up (on an empty tank of gas) -- we stop for gas & head on.

Moving on to after work - I head over to B2B to pick him up & we head to my parents house in Ft. Inn to help dad with the trailer that will be used to pick up Mike's car (still in the parking lot). Totally forgot about the Christmas parade being moved to last night because of the torrential downpour that occur ed last Wednesday! So we're truckin' through the traffic, minding our business when we GET HIT!!! Ugh! I pull the car over, put the flashers on & promptly jump out of the car to check for damage. Other than a few scratches we were okay. HOWEVER, the people that hit us PULLED AWAY. After checking their car, they saw us coming over to check on them and they jumped in and sped off!! Hahahah. Seriously!? Mike and I just laughed. The police car that rode in the parade happened to be coming down the street so we flagged them down & told them what happened So after that is all taken care of, we finally are back on the road to help out with the trailer.

Dinner proceeds without any hitches (which is a blessing in itself seeing how the rest of the day was going!) After dinner Mike, Cayden and dad head down to the shed at Honey's house to weld something onto the trailer. Mike was holding some kind of clamp for dad when a little BB sized pellet of volcanic molten lava hot metal shot over & stuck to his wedding band! (Which was also a blessing in disguise because I'm sure it would have melted straight through his finger.) So he hurriedly pulled off his wedding band to find a nice, large blister ): My poor Mikey. I didn't know about his finger until about 2 hours later because dad called to tell me to be sure to take care of it when Mike got home -- laughing all the while!

So here's to being In It To Win It with You Mike. (:

November 29, 2009

11-20 through 11-28

Goodbye November!

Friday, November 20
Flowers in bloom at the lake house (where we spent part of the weekend with Matt & Amanda Tingle -- good times!)

Saturday, November 21
Down on the dock...I love it there (especially when the lake is full!)

November 22
Curtains, a new way of life for us (thanks to my awesome Honey (my grandmother))

November twenty third
Gene!!!! The NUT - WREATH IS DONE!!!!!!! I am so proud of it .. I think it will definitely stay up year round (maybe I'll just get different colored / patterned ribbons!) hah!

November 24
(another) Pumpkin Cheesecake -- and it made me make a mess!! (This was also the first time I used the "mean green mixing machine" from Mike's mom -- I will use for everything from now on!)

Wednesday, November 25
Thanksgiving Gathering at Mike Hawkins' House in Greenville
Tag: Mike & Brock

Thanksgiving Day, 2009
This is our first Christmas tree (a gift from Mike's grandmother!) -- we LOVE it .. Charley Brown as it may be - it's ours!

Friday, November 27
A little off roading -- good for new scratches on the car, dings in the paint, mud on the engine & a crushed bumper ... priceless!

Camped Friday - Saturday with John & Elizabeth up in Gorges National Park -- GREAT weekend!

Saturday (11-28)
Just before we went our separate ways ... until camping / off - roading comes around again. (Hopefully soon!)

November 24, 2009

11-15 through 11-19

Sunday, November 15
This tree grows through our back porch

Monday, November 16
Dinner (: 

Tuesday, November 17 
Pumpkin Cheesecake! (my first [pumpkin one] ever)

Wednesday, November 18

Nut Wreath! (check it out on Martha Stewart's web site! Thanks MG!) -- LOVED the craft -- & I had so much fun doing it! ... finished product soon to come! 
(1 Styrofoam wreath, hot glue gun (lots of sticks), 3 lbs of mixed (shelled) nuts, 2 yards of ribbon)

Thursday, November 19
*Happy Birthday Meredith!*
Slowly making progress!!! (Melissa, Carolyn, & Melanie I have missed doing crafts with y'all!)

November 15, 2009

11-9 through 11-14

As I sit here to upload the pictures for last week, I'm listening to Christmas music on the radio (this weekend preview has rocked) & it's about 70 outside. Absurd!

November 9
Dusk from our back porch

November 10
Spices for Steak .. YUM

November 11
Veterans Day. Thank you Veterans for all you do.

November 12
Mike & I walked downtown for ice cream (:

November 13
Our first lake trip since we've been married .. Mike LOVES Clancy.

November 14
Flowers. Flash turned down.

November 13, 2009

Christmas is in the air!!!!

AHHH!!!! It's November 13 (Friday the thirteenth, actually) - and I heard Christmas MUSIC on the radio last night!! Oh what a glorious, glorious sound! (: I squealed like a little girl when my friend Ben called me to tell me to switch the station because it was on! My heart lit up! I ab-so-lute-ly LOVE Christmas. Everything about it...the lights, the smells, the music, family time (lots of it), everything red & green, carriage rides, all of the lights, Christmas trees, wrapping and giving gifts, and of course that it is my Savior's birthday (I am also a HUGE fan of birthdays).

I also love traditions...Mike and I have an annual Christmas Date. In years past we've done it alone and with other couples, but this being our first year married I've requested that it be just us. I'm not sure what we're doing or where we're going yet - but I can't wait! I grew up loving to wake up around 4:30 AM and then waking my sister up to peak at all of the goodies that Santa left for us -- even in my last few years at home I woke up in the middle of the night, however I had been threatened by both my brother & sister to not wake them I had to force myself to go back to sleep until later in the morning (such party poopers!). [Mike is going to have his hands full keeping me asleep until after 4:30 AM... hahahahah!] From dating Mike so long we sort of have our Christmas schedule - but we've been able to split up as needed to make it where we needed to be -- this year we get to stick together (: I'm not quite sure where we'll be or when .. or who we'll end up celebrating with and at what times, but I know that it'll work out. I think it'll be neat to start our own sort of schedule -- making the rounds, but also making time for ourselves. We've already decided that Christmas morning is for us...and since it'll just be us - we're going to open gifts from "Santa" and then head to Simpsonville / Ft. Inn to see the fam!

I've already been begging Mike to take me to pick out a Christmas tree the day after Thanksgiving. I love decorating and I'm so excited to decorate our first house! a few things I'm really looking forward to: hanging our stockings (hand made by Meredith!), putting up lights, decorating our hypothetical tree, baking lots of goodies .. ahh - the list could go on forever! I just love it all! I think I'm also going to try my hand at making a few decorations for us this year!

November 10, 2009

11-1 through 11-8

November is here -- and so our first month of marriage was gone. Just like that! I can't believe how quickly it flew by. I also can't believe how awesome it was. (:

November 1
rod iron fence
not mine, but i wish it was!

November 2
More fall colors -- beautiful

November 3
Clancy came to visit while the Martins are out of town for a few days

November 4
On a walk around the block with Clancy

November 5
Another walk around the block
The Poinsett Club is one of mine & Mike's favorite places for a date!

November 6
Lazy Friday evening (:
(before a walk downtown for my first Sushi dinner & a photography studio Grand Opening!)

November 7
Trip to Gorges State Park
Off-Roading (: with Mike & Kayla

November 8
Paris Mountain, SC
While Mike washed all the mud from the off-roading trip off the car, I walked around & got some pictures of Paris Mt. in the fall!

November 5, 2009

10-24 through 10-31

the end of October
We are making it. We are loving it.

October 24
fall leaves

October 25
steps leading down (to our back yard)

october 26
pizza dinner + The Road to Perdition with OD = a perfect way to spend Monday night
(loved the flowers from Pier 1)

October 27
trip to Mike's house to pick up some the pouring rain led to pictures
of course..why not?!

October 28
Halloween Cookies

October 29
A little late carving "Pumpky" the pumpkin this year.
We got it done none-the-less.

October 30
Happy Shower Elizabeth! (:

HaPpY HaLlOwEeEn
October 31
This is my pregnant husband and our food baby.