Wednesday, November 13, 2013

40 Hours to Go, and I'm still standing...barely

Only two wake-ups to go...

WHAT a day!  Countdown is now at about 40 hours as of the time of this post.  We're both stressing and feeling overwhelmed and really excited to get this show on the road.  Delegation is in FULL FORCE! :)

The ladies had a great night last night eating, drinking and getting manicures, while the guys...well, all they're saying is "what happens on the mountain stays on the mountain." Go figure.

FULL day for Mom, Marcia and me today!  Mom and I started the day off with a T25 workout (Alpha Cardio) and she really liked it! :)  Then we took WAAAAAY too much time having coffee, Shakeology, blah-blah-blah before we got moving out the door.

If it wasn't for Marcia, I'd have gotten lost somewhere and unable to find my way home.  Seriously, I'm infected with BMB (Bridal Mush Brain) virus.  Why didn't anyone prepare/warn me about this week and how CRAZY it would be?!

Thanks to Marcia, and some assistance from Mom, we crossed a LOT of things off the list today!  And Matthew knocked off some things too, after the guys came down from the mountain!  Thanks everyone who contributed to "checks" in one way or another today!

Poor Sophie knows that something is going on but she just can't figure it out.  I tried delegating a dog walk to my Mom but Sophie wouldn't have it.  At least she's still happily taking bully sticks :)  After tonight, I get one more night to cuddle with my puppy before I become a Mrs and take off for our mini-honeymoon for a few days, and I hope I can get to sleep early enough Thursday night to enjoy it. :)

Aunt Bea (who is also my Godmother) arrived tonight!  And I felt a disturbance in the force about an hour ago...which means my little sister Christina has also found her way back home...

We're merely hours from that "let go and let God" point of things...and yet, it will all be over in a flash, and we'll be passed out on the floor unable to move for hours, perhaps days, and hopefully we'll be saying (IF we're able to utter words at all), "That was one heck of a party!"

Hang on, Honey. We're almost there!

Here's another oldie but goodie for today:  "Be still and know that I AM God."

We plan.  God laughs.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

A Week to Celebrate Life and Love

Monday started off with a T25 workout (What?!). We haven't worked out in a couple of weeks because of my cold, so this workout was both brutal and satisfying.

After coffee and Shakeology for breakfast, we attended a funeral for a neighbor.  It was a bittersweet way to begin the Wedding Week, and yet it also somehow made sense...

When we got back to my house, Matthew's best friend had just arrived, so we spent some time hanging out with him before he and Matthew took off to run some errands.  Later that night, we all went out for Sushi (with Marc) down the street, which Matthew hadn't enjoyed for a very long time!

Today (Tuesday) started with another T25 workout, only this time with Tane (pronounced Tah-nay), M's best friend.  We introduced this retired Marine to Shaun T's Beta Core Cardio, and at the end his response was, "That was great. What else ya got?"  Spoken like a true Marine, eh?

After some coffee, Shakeology, and more hang time, it was time for me to get moving.  I stopped in La Jolla for a pre-wedding wax, and then it was off to the airport to pick up my Mom!  I hadn't been to the airport since they upgraded the "new" terminal, so I was in for a nice surprise when I got there.  I was very impressed with what they did to the place!  Almost to the point that I wanted to start traveling again...almost.

Matthew let me drive "Kitty" so Mom was really impressed when she went for her first-ever ride in a BMW - and boy what a ride!  When I punched it going down Harbor on the way to PB, she said "WHOOOOAAA! This car's fast!" as the momentum pulled her head to the back of the headrest.  We had Chipotle for lunch, got some gas, and then headed home to give Matthew his car back so he could take it up the mountain with him this afternoon for his bachelor party.

After Scott & Marcia arrived, the guys left and now it's just us girls.  Mom's relaxing in my room reading a book, Marcia's downstairs taking the stickers off the centerpiece glass items, and I'm up in my office doing wedding stuff (well, I took a break to write this, obviously).

In a little bit, we will head to Danielle's house for a girls' night in with appetizers and, of course, wine, and my cousin Roselyn will be there to give a few of the girls mani/pedi's in preparation for the wedding.

Before I go, we received our engagement proofs from our engagement shoot down in Coronado, and they look awesome!  You can see them for yourself here:  LnM's Engagement Pics

Less than THREE DAYS to go!  I'm having fun, especially now that everyone is showing up, and I'm trying not to stress about some of the things that need to get done.  I've got backup now, so it will all workout!  I just know it will.  (Speaking of working out, I can't wait to introduce my Mom and Marcia to T25 tomorrow morning! hee hee)

Today's quote for you is one I've used before, but it's one I will keep at the forefront of my mind over the next 24 hours:

"I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me." Phil 4:13

Monday, November 11, 2013

Wedding Week Begins

Bachelorette Party, Vineyard Style

My last "single" weekend was a lot of fun.  It started on Saturday morning with my Bachelorette Party.  Yes, you read that correctly - Saturday morning.  Everyone met at my place at 9 AM for (a yummy cup of Kona and then) a day trip to Temecula for some wine-tasting/"Vine Crawl." :)  I should mention the girls were very patient with the bride being late to start the party - oops!  Sorry ladies!  :\
The Bachelorette and her Trusty MOH
Donning my very special Minnie Mouse ears veil, we started at Wilson Creek.  I immediately loved this place when Danielle told me about the doggies that are usually wandering around the tasting room...and the wine was really good too!  I wanted to buy a bottle of everything I tasted!  Instead, I settled on one and somehow ended up with two!  I'd love to go back to this place!  The atmosphere was great, the service was great, and they're dog why wouldn't I wanna go back?
My special "Bachelorette" wine glass
Next stop was South Coast.  This place was a-rockin'!  The tasting room had a great vibe to it - it was like being in a bar in PB except with a more mature crowd ;)  The service was also great, and I was equally impressed with their wines.  Another place to visit again!
The Bachelorette and her Vine-crawling Friends
By this time, our tanks were, um, full, you might say...and we were all ready for lunch.  So we headed over to Callaway and ate in their vine-side restaurant for some tapas and yummy watermelon sangria.  Great South American-influenced food, and our waiter was fun too.
Bachelorette Lunch
The tasting room was a bit of a disappointment, however.  I was not very impressed with the service.  They had signs everywhere telling you NOT to leave with a tasting glass because they "aren't included in the tasting price."  (Tacky?)  The wine was O-K...a little too dry for my taste, but I would've been okay with that if the service was better.  I think I was so used to great treatment we received at the other two places that I was quickly disappointed in the lack of attention we got at this place.  Needless to say, I won't be bringing Matthew back to this one.  The tasting room was buzzing just like South Coast's tasting room, but the service we got was dismal at best.  (Sorry to seem like I'm complaining or ranting, but I guess I was quite surprised because of the difference in service between this winery and the others we visited.)

Overall, it was such a FUN day with my friends drinking good wine and sharing fun memories.  One of the especially fun parts of this day was when someone would approach me, say congratulations and ask "When is your wedding?"  I got to say "Friday!"  :)
Giddy Bachelorette next to a cork replica of the Leaning Tower of Pisa
We arrived back at my place to a very happy puppy who greeted us wiggling her butt and folding herself in two (like a taco or cashew) competing for attention with Matthew...Guess who won in the end? ;)

Last "Date Night" as an Engaged Couple

We had planned to have a special date night on Saturday night since guests were due to start arriving (we thought) on Sunday.  So we sipped yummy Almond Champagne (from Wilson Creek - thanks Danielle!), had a nice, romantic candlelit dinner, and exchanged gifts with classical Christian music playing in the background (David Nevue channel on Pandora, in case anyone's interested) and a nice, warm fire in the fireplace.  The exchange of gifts was fun, and my favorite part was the after-dinner cuddle on the couch in front of the fire :)

The engagement period of a relationship is such a fleeting moment, merely a slice of the relationship as a whole...I'm really happy Matthew challenged me in the beginning to keep from planning right away.

Sunday Funday

We received a surprise Sunday morning - we thought Matthew's best friend was arriving, but it turned out he arrived this morning (Monday) instead, so we got an extra day to ourselves, and of course we spend some of that time doing wedding stuff ;)  Although, I think the highlight of Sunday for me was when we took Sophie over to Fiesta Island.  This dog is so incredibly fun to watch on the beach, I can't even believe it!  I really do have a beach dog!  And I just think that is so cool!!  SDBeachGirl has a beach-loving dog! How cool is that?!
Sophie in Doggie Paradise
If I lived closer to the beach and took her there more often, I'm pretty sure it would not have taken me almost 3 years to discover this, but now that I know, we will have to make more frequent visits to the beach!  Sophie happily (no, exuberantly) ran up and down the beach, running in the water, barking at the waves...running up and down, up and down, barking at the waves...and not paying any attention to the other dogs!  I've never seen her have this much fun without other dogs.  It was quite a sight to behold.

Here's a video of the SDBeachBoxer in action:

This was probably one of the nicest Sundays we have had together in a long time, and I think it was partly because we didn't have any of the "Sunday blues" involving thoughts like "Ugh, we have to work tomorrow."  Nope, not this time!  Cuz it's "Wedding Week!" :)

Saturday night at dinner, Matthew said "We're gonna have fun this week."  I think it was then that I realized how excited I am for this week.  We really are going to have a fun week, spending it with our girls/guys, with friends coming into town and family we don't see often enough.

I'm glad the weather forecast is looking so promising so far, but I'm even happier to be able to see friends and family who are coming into town to share and celebrate our special day with us!

I gave Matthew a card with a fun picture that had this caption:  The simplest joys are the best...

...and I realized...the simplest joy of them all is Love - to love and be loved.

"And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love."
-1 Corinthians 13:13

Friday, November 8, 2013

One Week from Today...

..."the two shall become one..."
(Yesterday I sent Matthew a meeting request for next Friday at 3:00 with this subject and it made us both smile.)

Okay, this will be another short update because I'm late chilling wine for my beloved who is on his way here after a long, stressful day himself.  Plus...I'm not done yet!  I've still got a few days before everything needs to get done!  (Pray that everything gets

Busy, stressful day yesterday and a bit more of the same today except it was more "fun" for some reason.  A late afternoon phone call from my boss (gulp) turned into a fun conversation about "make sure you eat!" and "don't stress about the little things because they don't matter."  Felt pretty good.  Plus back-to-back phone conversations with deacons that also warmed my heart.

So I took a break:  I played with the dog and took her for a little walk...and when I got back to my computer, which was around 5:00, I realized I had a couple more hours of work to do before I "shut off" for a couple of weeks.  Yikes!

I spent most of today feeling like a kid at school on the last day before Christmas break or Summer vacation...or as a high school senior on the day before graduation.  And my behavior reflected that feeling, which is why I just finished scrambling to get everything done so I could finally turn on that "out of office" assistant.

We checked off a few items from the list today, which was very good.  And added a couple of things I'd forgotten about...oops!

It's all good.

You know why?

Because God is good...and in control of it all.

And the only thing that matters is that I'm marrying my best friend in a week, and we are about to go for the ride of our lives! And we plan on taking lots of people with us!

A little "7 days to the altar" reflection:  Throughout the day, this thought kept running through my mind: "We're getting married a week from today! A week from TODAY!!  In SEVEN DAYS!!!"  And you know what?  Through all the stress, it finally hit me:  I'm finally REALLY (and I mean REALLY!) getting excited about this whole thing!  (Yeah, I can be a little slow

Matthew showed me our wedding bands last night and I almost cried.  At their beauty, at what they (will) symbolize, at their mere existence in our lives.  It's really happening.

What an amazing feeling to have yet another dream come true...

And now I leave you with a quote from one of my favorite New Testament books, Paul's letter to the Ephesians:

“For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh.” -- Ephesians 5:31

Thursday, November 7, 2013

A week 'n A Day

I thought I'd try posting an update everyday leading up to the big day now that there are only a few days left (yikes!).

This one will be short.  Why?  Because the word of the day has been STRESS.  Yes, a little bit of wedding stress, but it's been mostly work stress today.  I nearly had a panic attack midday when I realized I had less than 2 days to get everything done on my "list" (emailed from my manager)...

And then the migraine came...I think it was a migraine anyway.  42 years and I've never had one that I can remember.  I started getting this headache that got increasingly worse. So I took some ibuprofen to help alleviate it.  I took 2-200 mg capsules and the thing didn't budge. At all.  So I ate.  Still nothing.  And all the water I'd been chugging - still nothing.  In fact, it got so bad I got to a point where I had trouble concentrating, especially during a meeting with my Intern.  Add that to the near-panic attack stress I was already feeling and I was not doing so hot.  I complained to Matthew about it, and he suggested I go lie down and rest for a bit.  So I did...and I even took a short nap...and now it's gone!

That man is a, I think I'll marry him.  Hey Mr. Prince Charming, what are you up to next week?  Are you free around 3:00 on Friday? :)

Life is good...and God is good.  Things are getting done, balances are being paid, and we're gonna have one heck of a party next Friday night!

This time, yes, I will "Be still and know that I AM God."


Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Number 9...

Holy cow we've hit single digits in our countdown!!

As I shared on Facebook earlier this week, and as I've said to Matthew a couple of times already...we're getting married NEXT WEEK!!  I know I've said it before, but the time seems to be FLYING by these days.

People have started asking me some um...interestingly obvious questions like "Wow, it's coming up fast; are you getting excited?" Um, no.  I've been dreaming (okay, fantacising) about this day all my life, why would I be excited?  Especially after I tried on my gown last week!  OMG...Oh no, I'm not excited...not at all.  Hee hee

And then there's "You're getting married next week - are you getting nervous?"  Hmm...nervous - yes. About the wedding itself, not at all...about the details of the wedding, a little. However, if things go awry in any way, the most important thing about that day is that I will be marrying my best friend, and really, that's ALL that matters :)

Checks are a-flyin'!

The time has arrived - final payments are due!  So let the Credit Card Juggling Act commence!  It hasn't been all that bad, really.  And it's actually kinda nice to have that "paid in full" feeling.  Earning all those miles are awesome, but getting that credit card bill after the honeymoon...ugh.  (And just so you know, I never carry a balance on my's all good...because God is good!)

And we've been checking stuff off the list left and right!  Thank you Matthew!! xoxo  The loose ends are getting all tied up so nicely :)

Good news:  St Anthony helped me find my bridal shower gift list!  I hope no one minds if they get sent out after the wedding :\  I'm a little busy right now, but I will try to get them out soon...(Who's that etiquette lady?  Whoever she is, I apologize for getting my thank-you's out late!)

Deliveries and Arrivals

The UPS guy and the mailman have been wearing paths from the sidewalk to the front door with all the deliveries I've had this week.  It's kinda crazy, kinda fun...kinda like this big fancy party we're having in 9 days!

Family arrivals begin on Sunday with Matthew's best man.  My Mom and a couple of our NE friends arrive on Tuesday, and then it's all downhill from there...or something like that.  It will be nice to spend a little time with my Mom next week before all the craziness begins!

Okay, that's enough for today.  If you're joining in on our festivities, please be sure to check out our wedding website for the latest details.  I only have two more days of working as a single gal and then it's off to see the wizard...oh wait, no.  I'm going to the chapel...and I'm gonna GET MARRIED! Yeah! That's it! The wizard will have to wait until after the honeymoon ;)

Today's quote:
"Be still and know that I am God." STILL?! Who can be still at a time like this?!?!  Okay, let's try this again.

Here's an awesome quote from our awesome Pope Francis:

"Love shares everything it has and reveals itself in communication. There is no true faith that is not manifested in love." Pope Francis

Friday, November 1, 2013

As Shakespeare would say, We have but a Fortnight...

Seriously, Mr Time...could you please slow it down a little?  

"To some, a fortnight can feel like a a bride, it feels like tomorrow."
- Laticia W.

For the last week or so, I feel like the clock has been accelerating, and it's had me a tad nervous.  Add the fact that I'm just getting over my second cold in less than a month, and you might say I've been quite stressed.  I can't believe our wedding is the week after next!! Where has the time gone?  (shrug) Well, as they say, time flies when you're having fun...and if you've been following along this whole time, you should know how much fun I've been having planning this big celebration!  I'm super excited for this day, and while I really can't wait for it all to come together...well..., I kinda can.  I don't want it to come too quickly, ya know?  It's almost like waiting for Christmas...there's so much build up (especially if you just KNOW Santa is going to bring you that puppy or bike) and then all of a sudden it's HERE!...and then it's GONE!  And you look back thinking, "What the heck? Where did Christmas go?!" lol

And the sparks are a-flyin'...and it's not what you think!

sparky has definitely been getting his little digs in, and it only makes Matthew and me more excited to see what God has in store for our wedding day and our marriage.  The devil only attacks when something GOOD is on your horizon; it's his feeble attempt to distract you or get you to doubt yourself and reconsider your decisions.  It happens every time leading up to a Cursillo weekend, so why wouldn't it happen leading up to our wedding, the day we celebrate the greatest, once-in-a-lifetime Sacrament a man and woman can share together?

Well, that was weird...

I realized after my last post that I forgot to include the experience Matthew and I had when we picked up our marriage license, so I thought I'd take a moment to share it with you.  Matthew and I walked out of that office in the city building that sunny day and immediately said "Well, that was weird."  It felt very clinical and...just odd.  We gave them the marriage license application, and were given a number and told to go sit down and wait to be called upon.  When our number was called, we sat at a cubicle desk with a lady who reviewed our application, took my check, entered everything in the computer and had us review it and make sure everything was spelled correctly, etc...., we signed the application, and she gave us an envelope with the paperwork to give to the church, and off we went.  All with minimal conversation.  I honestly don't know what we expected, but it was kind of a strange experience for us, possibly because there has been so much excitement and emotion around this event up until that point, and then we go to this office and to these people, it's just a part of their daily job. lol

Ultreya! Onward and Upward...

Matthew and I attended the October Cursillo weekends and I think we both enjoyed the time with God and our brothers and sisters in Christ.  For me personally, I thought it was an excellent addition to our marriage prep.  I met some amazing women who I look forward to getting to know better as time goes on.  And I even got some ladies to participate in my "30 Days to the Altar" exercises with me everyday!

Busy, busy, busy...when do we get to rest?!

I know...AFTER the wedding, right?!  Well, I'm happy to say that a lot of things have gotten done since my last post, and some of that is due to Matthew taking on a few tasks in hopes of getting everything finalized in time for us to be able to sit back and actually enjoy a few days before the wedding.  (Yes, we really are hopeful about this!)  Here are some of the things checked off the list:

  • We had a great dinner meeting with our DJ Peter K and our Emcee Scottay.  I especially enjoyed giving Peter our "do not play under any circumstances" song list hee hee
  • We ordered/purchased the wine for the reception...finally!
  • We ordered a Ketubah!  (This is actually something we are very excited about and will explain in more detail a little later)
  • We met with Deacon Dennis and Colleen for dinner one more time before the wedding to review our ceremony details
  • We had our linens consultation and discussed some final details with our caterer, which was fun
  • AND, we had our engagement session with our photographer last Friday down on the beach at the Hotel del Coronado - with Sophie, of course!  We had a lot more fun than we thought we would have!  It kinda surprised us both!  And Sophie went NUTS when I took off her leash and let her run around the beach.  She even ran right into the water and raced down the beach in the shallow waves.  She was so full of joy! I didn't realize until then how much she loves the beach...just like her Mama ;)
Here's the picture that truly captured us as a family on so many levels...

I immediately ordered a 24x36 of this image and it arrived yesterday!  We can't wait to see what this amazing lady does with our wedding day photos!!  In fact, she was so impressed with this shot (with absolutely no ego in it at all - nobody could have orchestrated this incredible shot except for God, and she's humble enough to know that!), she ordered a studio sample to display in her studio AND she plans on submitting it for a photo competition!  How honored are we that we are the lucky subjects of a potentially prize-winning shot!?!

What fun would a wedding be without a "visit" from The Doctor? (Who!)

I recently surprised Matthew with something fun for our wedding...our very own Tardis!  About a month ago, I came across instructions to make a Tardis card box for your wedding, so I got this crazy idea to make one!  Since I'm not too crafty and don't really have the extra time to make one myself, I approached my retired cousin Grace, who just finished doing a bunch of DIY projects for her daughter's wedding.  The funny thing is her husband ended up making it instead and it came out looking amazing!!  Matthew was thrilled to see it :)  Here's a pic of it:

Lastly, as I mentioned earlier, Matthew has been helping me with some tasks, including chasing down the last of the RSVPs and securing the caterer for our rehearsal dinner, and he has been very helpful!  Thanks honey! :)

With only 2 weeks to go, I still feel like there is a LOT that needs to be done and I'm hoping I can knock out a lot of them over the next couple of finding my bridal shower gift list so I can send my thank you notes!! (Yeah, I really did lose

Goodbye, Madre...until we meet again in God's Kingdom

Sadly, one of our wedding guests will be unable to attend our special day after all.  Our friend and prayer partner, Mother Antonia was called Home recently, so we figure Jesus simply wanted her as His special guest for our wedding, and now she'll have an even better seat at the ceremony than she would have had.  We will miss this Saint dearly, though we know she will live on in our hearts and in the hearts of the many, many lives she touched, and we pray her legacy will continue to live on through her Sisters of the Eudist Servants of the 11th Hour.  Meanwhile, we will celebrate her life today in the Feast of All Saints and hope to be reunited with her one day (many, many, many years from now, please!).

Until next's another one of our favorite Bible verses for you:

"For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." (Jer 29:11)