America, Celebration, Family, Health, Summer, Travel

Bare Necessities

Leave it to my brother to come over to our house and make homemade mayonnaise. It’s a running joke for him that Chris and I never have what he deems that we “need”. Given, we were having a burger night and we didn’t have mayonnaise, so I guess he could make that point. However, neither Chris nor I like mayonnaise, so I can just as easily make the point that it isn’t something we need. Regardless, Jake made homemade mayo for those guests who required it and no one had a dry burger.

(Personal note: the good bulk of this post was written while on our honeymoon, so enjoy the warm, sunny photos while most of us are probably frozen in for the winter)

As a new couple, we’ve heard communication is key. Our communication is pretty good, but adding a second language to the mix while traveling for our honeymoon didn’t help. Our flight was routed through Panama City, and on our flight from Panama to Costa Rica, we were assigned to boarding group E. Chris, realizing that they would call all announcements in Spanish, asked me if they would say E or if it would sound different. I was absorbed in trying to read the signs in Spanish around us and thought he was asking me about the Spanish “y”, which is pronounced like the letter E and means “and” in Spanish. So, I said, “yes, ‘and’ is pronounced E”, which totally confused him. After a few more seconds, we finally got on the same page, and luckily on the same flight.

So, let me give you a brief overview of our honeymoon. It was beautiful. Tiers of natural thermal springs, running through the rainforest, like our own little personal hot tubs. We had an excellent time, this part of Costa Rica is one of my favorite places in the world.

The only slight downside to our trip was that the airline lost our luggage. Not like lost it, like it was delayed a few hours in getting delivered to our hotel. Lost it like we arrived on Sunday and our bag didn’t arrive until Thursday night.

At first, I was fine with it, then I became frustrated. But, such is life. My ever-prepared Chris made us pack an extra set of clothes and one bathing suit each in our carry-on bag, so we were pretty set for our first day of lounging in the hot springs. However, our zip lining and water rafting excursions required shoes that wouldn’t fall off, so our resort graciously gave us free transportation to the nearest town, which is how I ended up with these sweet $6 water shoes.

I also only had one t-shirt with us, which if you know me at all, is basically a state of emergency. So, on our trip into town, Chris was forced to go to about 10 souvenir shops with me as I scoured for a shirt I liked.

Shopping with me can be a painful experience of indecisiveness, but Chris was a trooper. When I finally found a shirt I liked, a blue tee with an cool zip-lining iguana on it wearing sunglasses, I asked Chris what he thought of it. His response was “it’s very you”, which shows just how well he knows me, because it is very me.

After I got my water shoes, iguana tee, and Chris got some hair gel, I felt much more settled. Maybe we didn’t need all of our stuff after all. Maybe we way over-packed. I definitely didn’t need all those t-shirts I packed. I had one with an iguana on it now. What more could I need? We both had shoes, dry clothes, a bathing suit, a towel.

But on a bigger scale, we had made it safely. We were well taken care of. We were healthy. And we had each other.

That’s really all we need.

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America, Celebration, Culture, Family, Farm, Funny, Summer, Travel, Uncategorized

Thoughts from an MOH

My best friend is on her honeymoon right now. I didn’t text her to check in to see if they’d made it safely to their destination but she sent me a message once she arrived. Not a message to necessarily tell me that they’d made it. She sent me her thoughts from a plane. 

I’m not sure who started doing thoughts from a plane. I want to credit her with it because I feel like she was the first one who came up with it. But, it may have been me. I’ll have to confer and get back with you on that one. 

Anyway, thoughts from a plane are literally just that: your thoughts about what is going on around you while on a plane. Maybe we started doing it because it can get terribly boring being cooped up in an airplane for a long time. Or, it could’ve been because you’re in such tight quarters that you can hear and see everything that everyone is doing. Either way, it’s funny to us to share our thoughts from a plane with each other. I wrote about it one time, if you want to read about it here

As I was saying, Jordan got married last weekend and part of my Maid of Honor duties were to write a speech, which I then relayed at her rehearsal dinner. 

I’m not a great public speaker, but I’m generally not terrible. I don’t think I did very well with this speech for two reasons

1. I wasn’t quite sure what emotions were going to be going on, so I was a little apprehensive about being overly emotional. I made it through just fine though.

2. I wasn’t sure what crowd size I’d be speaking to, so I’d made my speech more for a little bit more intimate of a gathering and there were quite a few people there. 

I feel like I’m generally better when I’m conveying thoughts through writing rather than speaking. It just comes more naturally. Even though I tend to write exactly as I would think/speak a thought. 

So, since I’d written the speech anyway, I thought I’d memorialize it in blog form. Because this seems like an official place to memorialize something of magnitude, right? 

Here they are: my thoughts for my best friend on the evening before her wedding: 

When Jordan told me that I would need to make a speech tonight, I wasn’t really sure what a Maid of Honor speech should be like, so I just wrote what came to mind. 

Jordan and I have been friends for a long time. Our families have been friends for over 100 years, so we technically have a long history together. But, I didn’t grow up with her, so I never really officially met her until we were around 14 or 15 years old. 

I remember the first time I heard about Jordan. I had just switched schools and some of my friends were hanging out by my locker, talking about this girl and her shoes. I have never cared too much for fashion and as an 8th grader, I cared even less. But, there was apparently a girl walking around in pink stilettos. And it was Jordan. 

It’s ironic that my first memory of hearing about Jordan has to do with shoes, because I swear, the girl currently owns about 500 pairs. 

I really got to know Jordan in high school. We had a class together and the first day I walked into class, there she was, seated in front of my desk, crocheting. She had her yarn spread out and could care less what anyone thought about it. I thought maybe during the lecture, she would take notes, but she continued to crochet. 

We did our classwork together, probably mostly because I was the one with the notes, and also because we were two of the only girls in that class. I’ll not bore everyone with stories of our youth, that most likely only the two of us would find funny. But, we began a friendship that has personally enriched my life a lot over the years. 

We are pretty much opposites when it comes to most things, so I think we both stretched each other in different directions in a way that causes so much growth as people.

Jordan wouldn’t let me have a slide show, but immediately, when I first started thinking about this speech, there was one picture of us that immediately came to mind. It was a picture of the two of us, on our last day of high school, right before we graduated. 

I had tried like everything to convince her to go to the University of Arkansas with me and she had likewise tried to convince me to go to OSU with her. But, both of us knew that the other place wasn’t where we were meant to be. So, we were going to be parting ways and on the last day of high school, that reality was sinking in a little bit more. 

You can tell in the picture that we had been teary eyed saying bye to all our friends. And, I know it seems a little bit childish now, but it was a big deal to us then. We were, in a tiny way, embarking into the unknown. We weren’t going to be full fledged adults by any means, because what 18 year old can really be considered an adult? But, we were striking it out on our own. 

We had no idea the people we’d meet or the new friends we’d gain, most of whom for Jordan are seated here tonight. We had no idea if we’d still be friends after it was all said and done. And, we had no idea the lives we’d eventually lead. So, the tears were understandable. 

But had we known then what we know now, how even though this step from high school into adulthood was a bit daunting at first, how it lead to so many great things, we may have still been teary eyed, but not because we were sad for moving on, but because we were overwhelmed and happy for the new things to come. 

And, as I’m writing this, I’m expecting that there will be some tears as Jordan and Jade now prepare to enter into a new, exciting phase of their lives together. But now we know that if we get a little teary eyed, it’s not for sadness of what Jade and Jordan are leaving behind, but for joy for the life that they’re about to walk into. Congratulations Jordan and Jade! I am so happy for both of you and can’t wait to see what blessings marriage brings to your lives!

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