Seven Years Strong

scottsdale wedding

scottsdale wedding

Little did we know that this exit was just the beginning.

Today we celebrate 7 years of marriage! People always tell you life goes by so fast and I’m pretty sure they are right. We’re in Pinetop, Arizona this weekend spending our free time relaxing at the cabin and we managed to find the only restaurant in town that takes reservations (also see: kind of fancy) and doesn’t have a kids menu. We are sold! We’ll be going there tonight, sans kids, to celebrate.

Date Night Part I: RA Sushi Bar

sushi date night
Ryan and I were challenged by our church to go on a date once per week for the next four weeks. It’s part of our newest series on relationships. At first we both thought the same thing, This is kind of hard to do when you have little kids and you both work full-time, and then we turned to each other and realized that this was probably the point. Find the time. So, we put down the laptops, the iPhones and our in-laws watched the kids so we could embark on a Tuesday date night out.

sushi date night

We ran to our favorite sushi bar for a little wine and dining. We were done a lot faster than we anticipated (apparently no one goes to eat out at 5pm anymore? Anyone?) – so we ran home and watched one episode of The Killing before picking up the kids. We’ll be doing one formal date per week through the month of September. I could sure get used to this.

My brother’s engaged!

There’s really no other way to say it than to scream it from the rooftops. My brother is engaged! I am so happy for these two, I can’t even stand it. I’ll skip the engagement story, because it’s not my story to tell, but it was full of romance and – in true Shaun fashion – was planned out to a tee.

I was sitting around the dinner table with my family when we got the call. I screamed, jumped up and down, and cried. My kids were so confused. Colton was wondering what I was doing. Kelsey came over to the iPad and asked what was happening. When I told her that Shaun asked “Beena” to marry him and she said yes, she started to smile. In fact, it was the first thing Kelsey said this morning. She rolled out of bed and said, “Mommy. Shaun and Sabrina are going to have a wedding.” My heart melted.

You always dream that your brothers will grow up to be successful, smart, normal, healthy people and you never really know who they are going to marry. But with Sabrina … we all scored big. She’s the most loving, caring and beautiful girl and the best part is, she loves Shaun so much. I know she would do anything for him. And him for her. I am over the moon happy and apologize in advance because there are probably more emotional my-brother-is-getting-married-posts to come.

Congratulations you two. I can’t wait to celebrate your happily ever after!

brother engaged

Good Men. Good Wine. Good Sushi.

It’s the little things that he does that make my heart smile. He’s been doing them for years, he just doesn’t know it. Back when we started dating, Ryan would do things at dinner that assured me chivalry was not dead. Little things. Like, when we ordered a shared appetizer. He would reach across the table, grab my plate, dish me up the appetizer, and then get his own.

ra sushiAnd how he always seems to find that one open bar stool at the bar and pull it up just for me. Or, when the parking lot is full he offers to drop me off so I don’t have to walk while he circles and circles the parking lot for an open space.

Not to mention how he is with the kids. When the kids start screaming and he knows I’m getting frustrated, he’ll make up some excuse like, “Babe, I really want to put them down tonight.” Or, “Let me give them baths, you just relax and then meet us up in the room after.”

Tonight was no exception. We were at dinner (babysitters … score!) and as we were waiting for our table to be ready at our favorite neighborhood sushi joint, we decided to grab some drinks at the bar. For whatever reason (condensation?) every time I drank from my wine glass, I would get drips of water spilling out from the bottom of the glass.

Before this little leak had the chance to bother me, Ryan grabbed the glass, patted it dry with a napkin, checked to make sure that stopped the “leak” and then put it back in front of me. I know, I know. No biggie. But to me it was. There he was, in the middle of telling a story, and thinking about my well-being and comfort.

Sometimes it’s in these silly, little moments that I am reminded of how amazing he is. Thank goodness for good men, good wine, good sushi … and the weekend!

ra sushi

ra sushira sushira sushira sushi ra sushi

Six Years and Counting

Today, we have been married six years and one day! It feels like yesterday. It’s pretty cool because every six years your anniversary falls on the actual day of the week that you got married: ours was Friday, April 18, 2008. My in-laws graciously watched the kids while Ryan and I went to dinner at Lons at the Hermosa Inn.

We heard great things about Lons and were not disappointed. The food was okay but the patio was heaven. It was beautiful weather, we had a great spot near the fountain, under this huge tree and near the live music. They greeted us with a ‘Happy Anniversary’ and had rose pedals on our table (how cute is that?). We laugh because for our first anniversary we went to Elements at The Sanctuary and received the WORST service to-date so this place not only trumps them, but it’s a place we will recommend and come back to.

Ryan and I were finished with dinner and just about to order desert when Ryan pulled a blue box from his pant pocket and set it in front of me. I got you a little something, he said. A little something? It was a Tiffany’s box which equates to waterworks after two glasses of wine and an already perfect evening. I think I cried for 10 minutes. Finally, he said, “Aren’t you going to open it?”

He bought me an infinity ring to symbolize how long we’ll be married. All of our lives. I  love it. I love him. I loved celebrating six years with a man who I look up to. I think I pinched myself seven times last night, just thinking of all the great things we have been able to do in six years. Together, I feel like we are better versions of ourselves. Marriage is a true blessing and for that I’m forever thankful.

anniversary at lons at hermosa inn

Postinos and Paid Time Off

You know lunch is going well when it involves a pitcher of beer for him and a glass of wine for her. That was our Friday. Ryan I took personal time off and spent it at Postinos. We had a long lunch, went shopping, and just talked. We caught the winning UofA game, courtesy of the ESPN app on our phones and that was that. A wonderful Friday, built for two.

date 2

date 1date 4 date 5 date 6A sign of a good date: the off-center, head-chop selfie.


date 10

Listen outside of your comfort zone

The saying goes, “The magic happens outside of your comfort zone.” Well, let’s just say I went to a metal concert. Yep. A metal concert. Why? I was being the nice wife and taking my accountant, straight laced husband to see his favorite band play at a local venue.

“They used to be a heavy metal band, but now they are just rock. You’ll like it,” he repeated over and over for the past two months. I knew that I would hate it, but it was a great excuse to hang out with my man sans kids. As I was getting dressed my husband looked at my bright blue skirt and said, “Um. You might not want to wear that.” “Why not?” I asked. “I just don’t think it’s that kind of concert” he replied.

Now, you tell me – what kind of concert doesn’t welcome a beautiful, flowy colored skirt. Rude! Needless to say, I put on dark denim, a black top and a black, leather bomber jacket. And flats. Apparently it’s “not a heels place either”.

Off we went. We drove up to the parking lot at 7pm. Our ticket stubs said 6:30pm so we thought we were being fashionably late. Let’s just say we haven’t been to a concert together since … well, since Kelsey was born. A lot has changed in three years. Or, rather – we have changed in three years.

We stroll up to the ticket counter. “We are here to see Anathema”, we said in our coolest voices. “Sure thing. Here’s your tickets. They won’t go on until 10pm or so.” TEN PM!!! What are we going to do for 3 hours? And what band starts at 10pm? After those words came out of our mouths, we looked at each other in shock. When did we get so boring?

We’ll show them, we thought. Not really knowing who ‘them’ was. Maybe we just wanted to prove to ourselves that we still had it. It being the cool, young, carefree part of ourselves that we’ve been suppressing since we became the parents of two young children.

We took off to Mill Avenue (the college part of town). We soon found ourselves at two bar stools, sitting in the middle of a busy sushi bar. We caught the end of a college football game. Threw back a beer (and glass of wine). Ate some sushi. And the best part? Our concert hadn’t even started yet. We had time. Time to catch up. Time to talk uninterrupted. Time to ourselves.

Then, we checked the time. Time to go to the concert! And, to my surprise, this rock band from Liverpool was surprisingly good! And calm. The instruments were amazing. You could really hear the emotion in their songs. There was a moment when the lead singer said, “Now we’re going to dig in the Archives and play …” and I about lost it. What if there is a mosh pit? What if they start screaming and I have to throw a grown up tantrum and leave? My poor husband. This is his night.

And then they played – and again, no yelling. No hard core metal. Just cool, cool music. I think music just does that to you. Concerts too. They take you to a different world. You really get wrapped up in the moment and overwhelmed (in a good way) in the stories they tell with their voices. I liked it. Here’s a little snip it of one of their songs. You might like it too.