Tuesday, April 16, 2013

time away.

Last weekend, we were swept away...

Celebrations of the combined: 3 year anniversary, Roger's birthday, and my soon to be graduation from nursing school.

and the best part - it was ALL my husband's idea.
He planned this MONTHS ago.
A weekend in the great smoky mountains.
A log cabin.
Alone with my love.

Friday morning, I was in Orangeburg for our NCLEX-RN review at school.
Friday evening, we were sitting in a double rocking chair, on the side of a mountain, watching the sun set.

Of the 6 years that we have been together, we have not yet taken any sort of "road trip" together.
I'd hardly call it a long road trip - it only took 2 and a half hours to reach our destination.

we drove and drove and drove to the end of South Carolina, and low and behold, the mountains started coming into view...

Oh, that sight was just what we needed to propel us back to our childhood.
We giggled, and oohed, and ahhed, and took 20thousand pictures.

Then, my husband started to panic because my car isn't the best for climbing mountains {we found out}
But, then he remembered: my car is a stick-shift, and shifting into a lower gear makes a world of difference.

We got lost in Asheville {I don't know why he couldn't just follow my pointing finger toward the right exit}
I pointed to it.
He said, "Oh, that one?" and drove on by.
Thank you Jesus for GPS on the iPhone.
We named her Delilah because Siri just isn't personal enough.
She got us out of the city and back on track to Leicester {pronounced Lester}

And there was the sign, pointing us to Wildberry Lodge.
On Potato Branch Road.

We got to the driveway and noticed it was gravel, going straight UP.
My first thought: how is my car going to make it up THAT??!!

you cannot even imagine the "straight UP" this driveway was until you stand at the bottom of it.

Then, we rounded a bend in the driveway, and saw, THIS!!!

and we were in love.

It really was breathtaking, beautiful, so, so amazing.
And there were goats, 3 dogs, and 2 Scottish Highland cattle - thought they were buffalo at first.

walking up to the side to check in.

and from the big house, you could see our cabin...

The honeymoon suite is on the top, and the wineberry suite is on the bottom.

From our front door:

living room | kitchen


patio from the front doors.

above: morning coffee on patio, watching the sun creep up behind us.

the views were far more than we could even expect.
the peace and quiet was stilling.
the nights were dark. very dark.
the morning sun poured over the mountains, lighting the valley piece by piece.
the mornings and evenings were chilly - in the 40's.
the days were perfect - not quite into the 70's.
the hosts, Ken and Glenda, Pat and Bob, were fabulous.
the breakfasts were mouthwatering and ALL home made.
the other guests were friendly and up for conversation.
there were mountain trails behind the house and a fire pit half way up one mountain trail.

we cannot WAIT to go back.
and make this place a regular spot on our destination get aways.
we laughed, talked, and enjoyed each other.
But missed Hailee so much.

some of the livestock:

The Views:

walking the trails

overlooking the valley

tons of farms on the hilly mountain roads.
beautiful little flowers on this bush! 

walking from our cabin to the big house.

mountain roads: Newfound Rd.

Wildberry Lodge is at 2700 ft.
Our ears popped for a while adjusting to the altitude.
We spent a day in Maggie Valley, about 20 minutes away.

I could live in the mountains.
Maybe one day...

But for now, it's back to life, back to reality.
I had my last day of med-surg clinical yesterday.
Next week, I'll be in the ICU for 2 days.
Then, I will graduate!!!

It's hard to believe we're nearing the end of our journey through nursing school.
It's bittersweet.
We've spent SO MUCH time together over the last 2 years.
Developed relationships and lifetime friendships.
I'm going to genuinely miss everyone.
Our Pinning Ceremony is 16 days away.
{I just had to count that twice to make sure i was right...}

deep breaths, people.
deep breaths.

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

showing my real.

Sure, with the internet, it's easy to make things look "normal" or even "picture perfect".
But, in real life, not so much.
Especially with blogging, you only "see" what everyone else wants you to see.
No where is it said that you have to be honest about your life, or your family, or your {everything else in between}.

on my little blog feed today i saw a post "Showing my real" by Jami Nato, and it stopped me in my tracks.
now, i feel the need to show you guys my real ;)

what's real?
i like writing in lowercase. i know it doesn't look professional, but i like it.
i do not wear make-up {most of the time} but can never be without lip gloss.
i have more pens and markers than i even know what to do with.

my marriage is not perfect.
my husband and i are polar opposites. he tends to be extreme, and i'm pretty laid back.
he takes things to the next level and i'm good with dismissing them.
i'm disciplined when it comes to spending money. my husband is not.
he has much more patience with our child than i do.
we both love her more than we ever thought was humanly possible.
my mothering is a style all of it's own {and often clashes with my husband's view of parenting}.
my house has stuff shoved in corners and under things, and in closets - we're pretty much bursting out of our seams.
my car can get messy fast because i spend at least 10 hours in it during the week {commuting to and from school}.
my relationship with God is most definitely NOT in a place where i'm happy with it. {i need more time}
sometimes i yell.
sometimes i "shut down" when my husband talks to me because he tends to be lengthy in the conversations we have. i'm not that much of a talker.
my husband likes to save things. i have no problem throwing things away.

sometimes i spend too much time on my iPhone.
sometimes i refuse to do the dishes after making dinner because i'm tired and it's not fair that i have to clean up after preparing the meal my family eats, even though i prepared it {life isn't always fair}.
sometimes my husband and i {try to} compare our days and who has had the roughest day - when really, how can you honestly compare electrical work to nursing {student who will graduate in 4 weeks... EEEK!!!}?

i lost my birth control pack 2 nights ago and had to buy another one on my way home today... tore mah house apart trying to find it.
i brought the wrong book to school today.
i lost my child's shot records which i will need for her 4 year old well check with a new doctor on friday.
i cannot find my jacket after thoroughly cleaning the house this weekend for my 4 year old's birthday get together. there was a gift card in the pocket.
i've gained so much weight since being in nursing school that i do not even like being in pictures anymore.
right now, 4 weeks away from finishing nursing school, i'm not interested in changing anything in my life because if i can just finish these last 4 weeks, then things will eventually start drifting back toward normal.

i don't like driving if i don't have to.
i will not go outside if the huge bumble bee that hangs out around our front shrubbery is flying around. i think it's a wood bee and it wouldn't hurt me, but it's HUGE. for seriously.
bugs will be my undoing. it is the one thing holding me back when i think about doing any foreign missionary work. if i can't handle these bugs, how am i going to handle the bugs in a foreign place - even a tropical place where the bugs are bigger and creepier??!!

i love reading {good} blogs.
so often, blogs can be self-centered {to the max} and just recently, i've stopped reading some of the blogs i used to because they were all selfishly written and it just started wearing on me.
i like to be inspired by blogs, and pictures.
i like to be challenged when i read people's blogs, encouraged even.
i don't want to see how amazingly darling and perfect your life is or how your children spend every day running through meadows, then come home and take perfect 2 hour naps, then eat all their vegetables at dinner.

i like real.
because real is honest.
this is who i am.
i struggle. we all do.
i need people to love me and pray for me. we all do.
being a mom is hard. i don't always make the best decisions.
and i don't accept criticism well.
i get defensive.
and walls go up.
sometimes, the hardest thing to do is ask for help.
or admit defeat.
i thank God that He meets us where we are.
He finds us and welcomes us back into His arms, like the good shepherd He is.
and loves us unconditionally.
and shows us how to love others, because that is something i need a healthy lesson in quite often.
and i thank God for my husband, and the sweet gift He has entrusted me with, my 4 year old, Hailee.
only God could have orchestrated our small family the way He has, knowing our hearts better than we know them ourselves.
only God could have brought me my husband whom i know and love more than anyone else on this earth, through the good times and the bad.

i need to spend more time with my husband.
and next weekend, we will be going away for our anniversary to a bed and breakfast near Asheville, NC.
in the mountains!! i will miss my child fiercely, but will appreciate the precious time it allows for my husband.
i need to treasure him more.
i NEED to hurry up and finish nursing school so it won't be anywhere on my priority list any more.

pinning is in 4 weeks.
THAT is real.
then, i will be a REAL nurse.
after i pass the NCLEX-RN.

i enjoy reading about your real lives.
really ;)

cupcakes i made for hailee's 4th birthday. i iced the white ones, roger iced the pink. 

me and hailee 

 our bathroom cabinet. not cleaned.

 MY area.

 taking care of my sick child last week.

these are sprinkled through out our house because i get up a good bit at night. 

out at grammi and poopa's 

making lists and plans for the wildberry lodge.
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