Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Reception or bust....

After our first outing looking for a reception venue, I'm about ready to hand over the reigns to someone else.  Who would have ever thought looking for a place to host a party could be so dang stressful??  After getting my hopes up a little too much about the Stonegate Mansion only to have them dashed by the outrageously expensive cost of it all, I was thrown into a pre-migraine state.  Not good.  After a quick nap in front of the fire and bundled up under 2 blankets, I was ready to get back out on the prowl.  Luckily I remembered that when we went to visit Marty Leonard, the lady there gave us a packet of reception venues.  I found some possibilities on that list.  Here's to hoping one of them works out.  One of them looks really promising- I emailed them last night and had a response this morning.  They're kind of an all inclusive type reception place.  Think Sandals resort type of all inclusive and that's what this place is.  The only thing they don't provide is the cake.  Seriously.  They've got everything.  Hopefully we can go look at this place on Saturday.  If not, I'll go look on my own early next week.  Cross your fingers....

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Wedding Shopping!!!!

So, as promised, we went shopping yesterday for the wedding.  The morning began by getting up at 6:00 to leave by 6:30 to be at Target before they opened at 7.  Mission accomplished.  Jacob and I left before mom and dad to secure our spot in line- 2nd in line to be exact.  I felt like that lady in that old Mervyn's commercial standing outside the doors of the store with her hands waving saying, "Open open open...".  Let me tell you, I had my mind and heart set on those silver and purple ornaments and I was not above throwing elbows if needed.  The lady at the first of the line decided to take her sweet time sauntering through the entry way and I just mall walked right past her.  I got to the Christmas section and started grabbing stuff off the shelves as I passed them.  Truly a talent.  Before we knew it, we had filled 2 buggies with merchandise.  I mean FILLED them.  We had to stop and do inventory and put back various things that we didn't need but grabbed anyway because they were the right colors.  This is the final purchase:

After Target, we ventured out to Garden Ridge because of a rumor about lots of purple and silver Christmas decorations.  That's pretty much what it was- just a rumor.  Not a lot of purple stuff.  Jacob saved the day however- he found glass ball ornaments in packages of 24 in the exact color we needed on the back of a huge display.  Well, all of the reachable ornaments were either the wrong color or they were broken.  So, being the shopping engineer that I am, I decided to crawl back into the shelves that back up to the display and sit in the middle of the display and go through the packages.  It was quite a sight.  I'm pretty sure I scared a little kid pretty bad who was putting something back for his mom and saw me.  We ended up getting some cases of broken and not broken ornaments and combining them into complete unbroken sets.  Quite smart if you ask me.  Sorry to whoever is left with the cases of completely broken ornaments.  We needed them for the wedding- sorry.

The good news about this shopping trip was that we got the majority of the decorations.  Actually, that's really good news.  And- because we're going to have an overabundance of silver and purple ornaments, I'm thinking about attaching little thank you notes to them and having people take one as they leave the reception as part of the party favors.  Thoughts?

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Just A Little Bit Different Christmas...

So this Christmas has been a little different.  Not in a bad way, just not the same Christmas I'm used to.  No one expects one of their family members to have a stroke.  No one really expects to spend day after day in the hospital wishing there was something more you could do but in the back of your mind knowing that just being there is enough.  Normally this time of year there's lot's of shopping to do, Christmas lights to look at, and holiday goodies baking away in the oven.  Not this year.  This year priorities got checked.  I needed a good priority check.

Tomorrow we'll wake up early and head up to the hospital to be with DeDe.  Mom bought him a miniature Christmas tree to put in his room at the hospital.  Hopefully he'll like it.  He hasn't been much of a Christmas person since MeMe died.  She loved everything about Christmas.  That's where I get my love for the season from.  She would have every room in her house decorated- even the bathrooms.  Since she's been gone, he hasn't decorated because it makes him miss her more than he already does.  Hopefully the tree will do him some good.  It's really drab at the hospital....although, one of his walls is painted a spiffy sage green color.  After we spend some time at the hospital, we'll go over to my aunt and uncle's house and have lunch and such.  It's kind of sad to me to know that DeDe won't be there.  It's hard to not have someone there when every memory you've got of a holiday has them involved.

On a lighter note...a "whiter" note: it snowed today!!!  It snowed!!!!!!!  Not just that wimpy Texas 1/4 of an inch so we shut the state down snow- I'm talking 3 inches!!  3 whole inches!!  That's enough to almost make a legit snow angel!  It's not supposed to get above freezing all night so it'll definitely be a white Christmas tomorrow morning!  I'm pretty sure that'll be the first one of my entire life- and it only took 23 years to make it happen.  :)

Merry Christmas to all and to all a good night!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

A Double Dose of Good News....

Are you ready?  Can you handle it??  I hope so.  Buckle your seat we go.

Dose numero uno:
The lady at the Marty Leonard Chapel called and told me today that our preferred date had just become our actual wedding date!!!  December 4, 2010 is ours!!!!  I knew that other bride would choose the October date.  Smart choice girl.  Smart choice.  Mom, Dad, Jacob, and I have an appointment to view the Stonegate Mansion a week from today so hopefully that will get booked soon too!!!

Dose numero dos:
DeDe got moved to the rehabilitation floor at the hospital and intensive therapy begins tomorrow morning!  Yay!!!  Also- they did the modified barium swallow study (MBSS) on him this morning and he was silently aspiration just as I had expected.  I guess that means I know some stuff in the realm of speech path.  :)

Monday, December 21, 2009

An update on DeDe and planning...

Well, I'm sitting in the hospital room with DeDe.  Through some stubborn persistence on my part, he's supposed to get a swallow study this morning and I thought I needed to be here to make sure it was done correctly.  :)  I noticed that he was coughing after he ate and that's a signature sign of silent aspiration (it's silent because he's lost sensation on that side of the face and mouth so the food doesn't trigger the swallow reflex as quick as it needs to be triggered and portions of what he eats could be entering his airway).

As far as planning goes, I'm still waiting on the chapel to call me back about to nail down the date.  We found a possible reception venue as well....The Stonegate Mansion.  It's literally 5 minutes from the chapel and it's pretty much the coolest thing you've ever seen.  No joke.  Hopefully the prices work in our favor and Mom, Dad, Jacob, and I can go see it soon.  Cross your fingers.

**A few pictures of Stonegate Mansion**

Saturday, December 19, 2009


As of this morning, DeDe still hasn't slept.  That makes about 48 hours without sleep.  Here's a run-down of what happened:

He woke up Thursday night around midnight to go to the bathroom and realized that he wasn't stable while he walked.  He decided to make some coffee and stay up.  He finally called my Aunt Denise around 5:15 and told her something was wrong.  She and my Uncle Jerry took him to the emergency room in Irving.  Apparently his symptoms got worse while in the waiting room.  His mouth began to start to droop on the right side and he began to lose more use of his right arm and leg.  They did an initial CT scan and couldn't see the clot.  (That's not abnormal- clots tend to travel).  His speech began to slur (for all my SLP friends, it's very ataxic).  However, cognitively, he's still there.  He remembers going to watch my cousin coach a basketball game the previous day, even remembers the score.  After another CT scan and an MRI, the results are still waiting to be read by the neurologist.

I'll be sure and keep ya'll posted whenever I know something.  Prayers are appreciated!

**At my graduation last year**
According to the neurologist, the stroke is ongoing.  Meaning, most strokes are short and sweet, this one is not.  She also told us that it is located in the brainstem, not in the brain itself.  My speech path friends know the severity of that.  As of right now, he's lost feeling and most sensation in his right arm and can no longer lift his right leg.  They are expecting him to remain in the hospital beyond Christmas.  The rehab doctor will come and do his initial evaluation on Monday and give us a better time line until then.  Guaranteed stay until at Christmas at least.  Some of you may not know, but DeDe isn't a Christmas person anymore.  He hasn't been since MeMe died a few years ago.  So, I'm not sure how this Christmas is going to look.  However it looks, it'll be the way it's supposed to.  None of this was a surprise to God.  He knew this was going to happen and that we were going to have to endure it.  I've got to keep telling myself that.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Bittersweet Day....

Today has been a little.....strike that.....very bittersweet.

Jacob, Mom, and I went to Marty Leonard this morning to view the place.  Loved it.  Booked it.  That's the sweet part.  The bitter part is that my DeDe had a stroke this morning and is still in the hospital.  I was talking with Staci earlier today and she made the comment of how she wasn't sure if it was better or worse that I know so much concerning strokes.  I completely agree.  I'm not sure if it's better or worse that I know what all is involved in this.

Enough bitter- let's get back to the sweet.  Marty Leonard had someone tentatively scheduled for the 4th of December, however: that is the other bride's second choice.  We're praying that she goes ahead and goes her gut feeling and take her first choice in October.  She likes October.  She should get married in October.  It's a good wedding month- for her.  :)

I should know by early next week what date for sure the wedding will be at.  We've got our name down for 3 consecutive weekends starting with the Saturday after Thanksgiving.  Maybe our save the dates should say something like, "Save the Date!  Set aside 3 whole weekends!".  No, that's tacky.  :)

I'll keep you posted on DeDe.  I'm not sure how long he'll be in here.  We'll just have to wait it out.

Thursday, December 17, 2009


Well, the past few days have been full of fun and such.  I found out on Tuesday that I passed my state Praxis exam which means I can be licensed by the state in Speech Language Pathology!  Finals began and ended this week for me as well.  I passed all of them with flying colors and concluded my campus grad school work with a nice and shiny 3.5 under my belt.  That feels pretty good too.  :)

Jacob and I are headed to Dallas on Friday morning to go look at places for the wedding.  Here's the list of where we're going:
1.  Marty Leonard Chapel in Ft. Worth

(Just in case you forgot what it looked like....)  :)
2.  Fielder Road Baptist Church
3.  First Baptist Dallas (time permitting)

Hopefully we can find one we like.  If not, that's ok.  That just means more looking is needed.

I've already made my plan of attack for the day after Christmas.  Mom, Dad, Jacob, and I will be hitting the store waaay early that morning to get every thing silver related to Christmas decorating in the store.  Silver ornaments, silver Christmas trees (not the tacky 80's aluminum trees....the cool ones made from ball ornaments), silver table runners, silver this, and silver that.  You get the picture.  That'll be the first big wedding purchase being made!  How exciting!  I'll be sure and take a lot of pictures to show you just how hardcore we (and by we, I mostly mean I) am about this decorating business.  :)

Blessings today ya'll!

UPDATE:  Swing and a miss on 2 of the 3 choices.  First Baptist Colleyville requires that you be a member.  Scratch that one off the list.  First Baptist Dallas doesn't do December weddings.  Period.  I feel like you could be the queen and they would still tell you no.  Scratch that one off the list too.  Vegas anyone?

Sunday, December 13, 2009


I know it's a tad bit too early to be thinking about the cake, but I just saw this design on TV and then found a picture of it on the internet.  Instead of the pink ribbon, it would be the dark purple color.  The broaches on the bows would more resemble silver of course.  :)

Let me know what you think!

Friday, December 11, 2009

Pictures from the big night...oh and we've picked a date!

Just in case come of you haven't seen the pictures from our engagement night, here's a little sample of the 150+ pictures taken.

**Right after it happened.  Jacob was so sweet!  I was obviously in shock by the look on my face and he just sat there and told me he loved me and rubbed my back.  Good grief I love him.**

**Can't you tell we're excited?!?!**

**Probably one of my favorite pictures from the night**

**Hanging to ornament that Jacob gave me the ring in.  I'll cherish that ornament forever.**

**My beeeeeee-utiful ring!**

And now the moment you've all been waiting for:  the date.
Drum rolllllll please:

December 4th, 2010!

We thought it would be sweet to get married exactly one year after we got engaged.  I had always said that I didn't want to be engaged more than a year and it looks like I'll get my way about that!  My roommate, Ashley, told me a funny fact a few days ago.  She said, "Do you realize that he proposed exactly a year after we went down to Austin and went bowling with him?  Did you realize that??"  The story behind that is that I begged her to go down to Austin with me that night because I really wanted to see Jacob again.  I hadn't seen him since the night we met but had talked on the phone with him some.  Nothing beats a phone conversation more than a face to face conversation.  Being the safety minded person I am, I wanted someone to go with me for insurance purposes.  Someone to fake illness in case it wasn't going well.  :)  No need for that- bowling was more fun that I've had in a long time.  After the proposal, Staci brought to my attention that December 4th fell on a Saturday next year and that we could get married exactly one year after we got engaged.  How precious!  So, it looks like December 4th plays a huge part in our relationship: our first semi-date; our engagement; and next year, our wedding!  Thanks to Ashley and Staci for bringing that date to our attention!

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Cleaning the ring...

Anyone know the best way to clean an engagement ring?

Just curious.

I can't concentrate....

As many of you know, it's finals week.  Too bad my mind isn't on finals- it's on wedding planning!  Luckily I get the advantage of having 2 of the 3 finals open note and book.  I feel like that should make up for my lack of studying.

Even though the wedding is a year away, I can't help but want everything planned and ready to go right now.  Hopefully over Christmas break we can get some of the big stuff the venue.  I've already made a list of some places that we need to go visit.  Here's some pictures from them....let me know what you think!

1.  Marty Leonard Chapel

2.  Prestonwood Baptist Church

3.  First Baptist Dallas

These are the 3 big choices as of now.  I'm sure more will follow.  Let me know what you think about them and/or if you've been to a wedding at any of these places.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Let the planning begin!

Welcome to my wedding planning blog!

Stay tuned for updates on the process!

First up on the list: the venue.