Wednesday, August 31, 2011

the first day, of the last days

i'm just being theatrical with that title! IS important - it's the first day of mike's last semester.

i'm so very proud of him, and just think he's amazing in how he's persevered through changing majors and dreams, "incomplete" advice from his adviser, and the days and days and days of mundane work to finish each class.

i love you so much, baby!!!!  i praise God for letting you get here, and honor you for your hard work!!  here's to the beginning of your last school chapter.....i'm so excited for you.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

zombie engagement pictures

busy life right now!!  mike's wrapping up his booz allen internship, and i'm swimming in a sea of state tax returns.

as my highlight of the day, eli sent these engagement pics - a couple after mike's and my hearts!  i wish we'd thought of this!!!  ;-)  j/ grateful for mike's planning and our own engagement pictures, but aren't those fabulous????

Monday, August 15, 2011

Happy 40th Anniversary to Mom and Pop!!!

mom and pop celebrated their 40th anniversary august 7th!!!!

any "deep" relationship takes work (duh, kati).  friendships, family.....we're familiar with the "get back up again" phase that comes when the rougher seasons hit.  and marriage - the closest of relationships, which the Bible defines as becoming one flesh - i'm just a marriage-rookie, so i don't want to sound presumptuous, or knowledgeable.......but i know my relationship with mike is already the hardest and most rewarding i've ever known.

and so, to see a couple that we respect mark their 40th anniversary is such happiness!!!!  we feel respect for the marriages around us that persevere, and pursue being in love with each other - we aim to do the same, and watching you gives us hope and excitement to follow you!

so we wish mom and pop a happy 40th anniversary!!!  it is such a huge marker, and testimony to God's grace, and an example to this baby marriage that's watching - thank you for loving each other, and for the mentoring you've already given to us!

a picture from the decarlo family brunch this past saturday, to celebrate mom and pop's anniversary, of some of the cousins:

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Night at home!

A game of othello (mike's win this round!!!), some favorite beers, and a little flame!

Thursday, August 11, 2011

entering the deal-finding world

it is probably already obvious from this blog - i'm interested in all things money-saving these days!  our "wants" list is relatively short - owning a house, going on vacations together, having babies (though this week, i've started to propose to mike that we dote on our nieces/nephews forever and just travel the world!!!) - but adds up to thousands of dollars.  so our "savings" list is constantly being added to.

and may i say, it's a tricky business!  because as i look for ways to save us money, i also get convinced that we need this, or should do that.  admittedly, i'm a marketers dream - you show me a picture and write a description with exclamation points, and i'm sold!  there's a reason mike and i do all our shopping together!

but apart from that, i am finding that there are soooooooo many good deals out there, and trying to learn the art of saying no to a gorgeous deal if it isn't one that i'd originally set out to find.  any tips??

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

cow time!

we have a date for our cow!!!  well, 1/8 of a cow......we're set to go and pick our portion up october 18!!!

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

we sang the song "o wondrous love" at redeemer on sunday......and i teleported back to driving through an intersection in annapolis 9-10 years ago, listening to this exact song and tearing up.  smells are usually what most strongly take people back to memories - i suppose because i have minimal sense of smell, it's songs rather than smells that can jerk me back to a very specific moment.

and it made me tear up again on sunday, to remember feeling overwhelmed by God's love all those years ago.  i'm tearing up again, rereading the lyrics - i understand better today than i did all those years ago, how undeserving i am of this love.  my hold HAS failed, and He has not let me go!

"O wondrous love that will not let me go
I cling to You with all my strength and soul
Yet if my hold should ever fail
This wondrous love will never let me go

"O wondrous love that’s come to dwell in me
Lord who am I that I should come to know
Your tender voice assuring me
This wondrous love will never let me go

"I’m resting in the everlasting arms
In the ever faithful heart
The Shepherd of my life
You’ll carry me on Your mighty wings of grace
Keeping me until the day
I look into Your eyes

"O wondrous love that sings of Calvary
The sweetest sound this sinner’s ever known
The song of Your redeeming Son
Whose wondrous love will never let me go

"O wondrous love that rushes over me
I can’t escape this river’s glorious flow
You overwhelm my days with good
Your wondrous love will never let me go."
(lyrics courtesy of sovereign grace ministries)

Monday, August 1, 2011

noms, please?

so, food has been on my mind a lot's always on my mind, actually.  but recently, there has been additional reason to dwell on the gift of eats!  mike is a wonderfully supportive husband and always building me up as i learn how to cook and meal-plan.....but i have often joked in the past two weeks that i would understand if the recent feasting would turn him discontent with my own cooking!

(please stop reading if you are a fellow food-lover, and don't have something to munch after these pics make you hungry....)

to start, mom decarlo makes the.most.amazing's fabulous!  i've been wanting to make it, but it takes a bit of planning, and i haven't quite gotten to it yet.  two weeks ago, mom emailed me the recipe, and i made the mistake of mentioning this to mike.  poor man, he thought that i would be making in the NEAR future, which i couldn't because we were gearing up to be gone a lot (time to eat left-overs!).  he understood, but it really made me sad to compare other dishes back to what we could be's chili!  something to look forward to!!!!

also, we went to the klears (jaime's parents') a little over a week ago, for a seafood feast!!!  unsurprisingly, i was too busy scarfing down all kinds of goodness to take any pictures......and in true klear fashion, they even sent us home with left overs!  it was phenomenal.  pics before the feasting:

and then the picture i took as we were pulling away, after i realized i hadn't snapped any of the fabulous nom'ing! 

and, ohhh my......went went to muv and dad's this past friday, to enjoy time with just them.  muv made a truly gourmet 4-course meal......i "helped" a wee bit, mostly chatting with her while she cooked.  we were all wow'd.....view these pics at your own risk of becoming ravenous!

Vicychoisse (a cold potato soup, with cream swirled on top, sprinkled with onion grass that mike and i contributed)....i don't remember having cold soup before, and i don't know that i would risk having it again if prepared by someone else - muv's was AMAZING.

tomato slices w mozzarella and fresh basil (we ran out and cut the basil from muv's garden a few minutes before dinner, truly fresh!)

grilled strip steaks, grilled potatoes & red onions (wrapped into a foil packet with an assortment of herbs from muv's garden, then grilled), and honey-seared green beans (my contribution to the meal!)

mint ice cream w chocolate shavings & whipped cream (whipped cream whipped was whipped by hand prior to dinner, and the chocolate was also shaved right before we sat down).

told you!  enough to make anyone feel starved!!!!  a fabulous meal.....muv, thank you for your work to design and prepare it for us!

lastly, we went to the wedding of our wonderful friends, barbara and eric, on saturday.  was such a fun affair! some shots of us before heading into the chapel (where, a few shorts weeks ago, we were ourselves married!!!):