Thursday, August 19, 2010

10 and Counting

Our 10 year anniversary is tomorrow!! I can hardly believe it. It’s so hard to believe that we'll be passing the 10 mile marker already. I’ve had the best husband (at least in my opinion—I realize that you're thinking yours is the best and that's okay) to spend the time with. I thought about what to post since this is kind of a momentous day. In the end, I just decided to post pictures from the day and 1 from every year since. I think it’s fun to see the years added to people and how they have changed.

In this picture, I'm 15 an Kai is 18. No, we weren't dating yet, but we did flirt the entire summer and after the next summer of working together we would start dating.

This was after we had been dating almost a year. Taken at Pictured Rocks, in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan.

Our wedding day--just making sure you were aware of that little detail ;-)

My dad giving me away

The wedding party

Finally Mr. and Mrs.

Year 0: Seattle
On our honeymoon. Taken from the top of the Seattle Space Needle. We spent most of the week in Victoria, Vancouver, British Columbia which was gorgeous, but we spent some time here too.

Year 1--in Florence, Italy
Kai planned the entire trip from home in Michigan, by planning our route, calling each place and making reservations, crossing our fingers that they saved the reservations until we arrived, and battling language barriers over the phone (French, Italian, and Swiss languages). Internet travel was not widely used yet. This was our first big solo adventure outside the U.S. It was a little scary at first, but obviously it started something in us.

Year 2: Michigan and the beautiful fall colors

Year 3: En route to Thailand to train for teaching in Korea.
One of the other teachers took this picture when we weren't aware and if you look closely, we are praying because we're getting ready to get on the next plane. Though Kai loves to fly, and we've been all over the globe in the last 10 years, I have a huge fear of flying, so we/I do this before, during, during, during, and after every flight to help ease my nerves a little. This was after 24 hours of traveling already with about 8 more ahead of us. We were so exhausted. We actually got bumped to business class on this flight (think: seats recline flat) and I was so tired, I slept the entire way and didn't even get to enjoy it!

Year 4: Christmas Underwear Tradition
Kai's family has a tradition of giving a pair of nice, new underwear each year at Christmas and as the tradition goes, you have to wear it on your head. It's such a fun tradition and we have several years of pictures like this. We will be sure to continue this one in our own house. I'm sporting a pair of Victoria's Secret panties and Kai is in Tommy Hilfiger boxers.

Year 5: Toronto, Canada
This was probably our poorest year ever! We were living in Michigan as Kai was taking a few classes needed for dental school. We had just purchased a house and were living on my income as a first year teacher while paying for Kai's school tuition and books, dental school applications, and acceptance fees from my income so we could avoid loans. We saved and saved and saved for this anniversary trip and went somewhere within driving distance. It was a great trip and a great year.

Year 6: Puerto Vallarta, Mexico
Just before dental school started, we took a last minute trip to try and hold us over for 4 years since we were sure we wouldn't be able to afford traveling as poor students. We lived it up and did everything--four wheeling, zip lining, swimming with dolphins, taking a mini cruise to an all inclusive island, and enjoying the local flavor. Little did we know we were just getting started again.

Year 7: 9 Peaks Challenge
Never in my life have I been this close to death. We were hiking 26 miles in 1 day and bagging 9 peaks. Halfway through the adventure (at the 5th peak), we got caught on the top of a mountain in a raging hail and lightning storm that literally came from nowhere. We weren't prepared for it in the least (as you can tell from our clothes--that was all we had). We seriously almost froze to death and were literally dodging lightning strikes to get back off the mountain. Trees around us were getting zapped and as you can imagine, we were in constant prayer. Learned a few things on that adventure!

Year 8: San Fransisco
We had just found out we were expecting Kasen and made a trip to San Fransisco. This was actually taken about 2 months before our 8 year anniversary, but I included it in year 8 since most of year 8 revolved around getting ready for Kasen's arrival. It was one of the most memorable and fun trips we've had because no one knew we were pregnant yet and it was so fun to have such an exciting secret. We were literally bubbling the entire trip.

Year 9: San Fransisco (again)
Kasen was growing. I could have included pictures from Madagascar or graduation, or... but I figured you've seen all those before, so I would include one that I don't think I've posted. I love this one because I have a fascination with the talent of these street artists. Such a fun time.

Year 10: ???
I’m sure I could try to overinflate and paint our life to be all roses and fairy tales, but I won’t, because it’s not perfect. Honestly though, I consider our life even with the tough times to be worth every second. I wouldn’t change a thing. (Okay, well maybe I would have scraped every cent together and invested it all in the stock market and taken it out just before the big crash, but since I can’t predict the future…) But seriously, at the end of the day, when the errands are done, the house is clean, Kai's come home from a day at the office, my patience has been tried by our little angel, and we have tucked him for the night, I can say that I am truly happy.
10 years ago I gave Kai a ring inscribed with, “Love never fails” taken from one of my favorite Biblical passages in 1st Corinthians describing love. I love (no pun intended) the description of love found there and realize that I fall so ridiculously short of that mark, but the bottom line is that I don’t give up, and hope that one day it’s more like the description. I hope that 40 years from now, if I am still blogging ;-) , I will have an even better post telling the memorable story of a love that has lasted through the years.

Thursday, August 12, 2010


Was it planned? Nope. Not a chance. And you can be sure that we were more than shocked to read positive on the pregnancy test.
Would I have planned to be pregnant while:
  • I packed up the entire house solo while trying to keep Kasen occupied because the 2 weeks before we moved out and the week and a half after, Kai’s brother was in the ICU, so Kai was there pretty much 24/7
  • Moving from coast to coast on the bench seat of a Penske truck
  • Staying in hotels for almost a month straight
  • Unpacking seemingly endless boxes into a new home
  • Trying to get used to and accustomed to our new area including Kai starting a new job, buying another car, and all the paperwork that comes from moving to another state
  • Being extremely nauseous, dead tired, and chasing after a very active toddler
  • Not to mention leaving all of our close friends and family for a completely new place.
It was probably the worst timing possible for my 1st trimester. However, now that most of the trauma is behind us, we are very thankful to be expecting another baby which will put the two kids exactly 2 years apart. Originally we had wanted them 2 years apart, but foreseeing all the surmounting stress lying ahead, we decided to wait for a better time. Apparently God had other plans. Now we are just praying for another healthy, happy baby and I am also really looking forward to the passing of morning sickness. By the way “morning”? Ahem, WHO named it that??? It’s sooooo misleading. I think a more fitting term is: “alldaymakeyouwishyouweredead sickness”. Yup. Much more fitting.
Thankful to have all that behind us, and hoping to never again see the inside of another hotel room, we are settled, unpacked, and enjoying a much slower pace for right now. I saw the doctor this week and plan to have an ultrasound next week, so I’ll share more then. And, I am fully aware that I promised pictures of our house, so here are a few. (They were taken before we hung pictures.)

The fully loaded truck

In the backyard

Master bathroom

No, the chocolate carpet was not our first pick, but we're working with it...

We eat a lot of meals here

The river behind the house

Back view of the house