Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Wedding number 3!

Here's an iphone snapshot of BL and I at the wedding two weeks ago. Don't know why I didn't use my camera, the resolution is awful... The wedding was fun. It was one of BL's college friends. I liked getting me meet more of his friends. We also took a detour and stopped at IKEA! BL's first time, and he liked it. This is similar to what I wore to the wedding:
Wedding #3

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Wedding number 4!

 This weekend's wedding was a dear friend of mine from our Bible Study group.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Watching the planes come in

A week or so ago BL and I took a picnic to watch the planes at the airport. There were storms on either side of us and we got to see lightning and clouds forming and changing too. Feels like summer!

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Getting organized to walk down the aisle...

When I first thought engagement was getting close, I started to collect ideas on Pinterest for our wedding. But I didn't allow myself to do anything else. I knew that if I started to plan and get organized that I would get waaay ahead of myself. I didn't want to plan for things that I couldn't actually make decisions on. Plus, I was afraid I would get too emotionally ready to start the process and be disappointed if BL wasn't ready to pop the question just yet. 

As an aside, we had talked for a long time about getting engaged, but I pretty much told him that I wanted him to take the lead as far as when it happened... I lived to regret that a few times- near the end I was really impatient to be engaged! But God's ways are best, and I learned a lot about patience and trust. Trust in God, and trust in my future husband. I later learned just how sure BL was that he wanted to marry me, because I found out that he had purchased the ring and kept it a secret for months. Seriously guys, that made my heart skip a beat, I had no idea. but anyways... back to getting organized.

 Bookstores carry so many different options for wedding planners. It was so tempting to go out and buy the prettiest one. However, I'm such a do-it-yourself-er that I knew I needed to start from scratch and make my wedding binder my own. 

I started with a binder in a pretty blue and filled it with some helpful things like pocket dividers, reinforced filler paper, and page protectors. (If the Martha Stewart line was available at Staples when I put together my binder, I might have done some different things.)

Then I divided the paper and dividers into sections that made sense to me:
The Bride- everything pertaining to my dress, hair, and accessories
Wedding party- all about the bridesmaids and groomsmen and their attire
Ceremony- the details for the ceremony itself and on down to the decor and seating arrangement
Reception- This is the biggest section. It has everything from table centerpiece ideas, places to buy paper lanterns, lists of possible song choices, and on and on.
Photographer- lists of possible photographers and pros and cons of each. Now that we've chosen our photographer it will hold our contract, and a list of photo shots we don't want to miss.
Flowers- inspiration pics and ideas for bouquets, centerpieces, ceremony decor...
Honeymoon- BL did the planning for this, but I'll put our travel itinerary and packing lists here

I also have a bunch of documents going on Google docs that both BL and I can see:

Master To Do List- with everything that pops into my head, big or small.
Day of to do list- categorized and with a column to assign to people
Budget- including a tab for keeping track of spending
Guest List- with names, addresses, RSVP codes, and checklists for save the dates, invites and RSVPs
Wedding Day Timeline (long version)- to plan from the moment I wake up until our send off at the end of the night
Wedding Day Timeline (short version)- to keep everyone who is involved informed but not fill them in on alllll of the details
Wedding Shopping List- top of the list? vintage toy airplanes and world globes...
Wedding Contact List- with names and numbers for the wedding party, family and vendors.

Some of these things will stay digital and some will get printed out for giving to people the day of the wedding or sticking in my binder for reference.

 Resources I've used:

*All books pictured above were found on

Friday, May 11, 2012

Mornings With Addison's Disease

This is going to be a long post, but I think it's so important to share some of these things for others in my situation. If it gets long for you, no worries, I'll see you tomorrow for a style or decor post.

From Garnet Hill
 I will never admit to being an early-bird, but once I'm up and out of bed I'm alert and ready to start the day. I don't need coffee, a shower to wake me up, or an hour of don't-talk-to-me-time. In the past, my roommates would get annoyed by my cheerful chattering in the mornings. However, when I got sick with Addison's, mornings became a whole new experience for me.

A typical morning right after diagnosis was brutal. Waking up to an alarm is never fun, but it became very difficult to pull myself out of sleep. Once I was awake, my body was achy, unsteady, weak and I was very nauseous. After being out of the office while in the hospital I was trying so hard to make it to work on-time every morning, but it took twice as long to get ready.

I would walk to the bathroom, sit down to rest for a few minutes. Start the shower and undress, and sit down to catch my breath. Next I would stand in the shower until I couldn't stand up any more. Then get out, sit down and catch my breath and wait until I wasn't dizzy anymore.

Once ready for work, I was golden, but some days it seemed like I would never make it. Some mornings I didn't. The anxiety I dealt with during this time was especially overwhelming in the mornings. Feeling sick and weak made me feel even more anxious, and being anxious made me more nauseous. I felt hopeless at times.

Here I was, several months after being diagnosed with a chronic illness and I wasn't sure if the rest of my life was going to look this way. Well, I'm here to say that it has been 2 years and 7 months since I was diagnosed with Addison's disease, and my mornings do look different (most days).

When I was first diagnosed, I was treated with the steroid Prednisone. Many people with Addison's take it. It's an accepted treatment option, but it just wasn't right for me. Prednisone is a long-lasting steroid that takes up to 2 hours to become active in your body. My dosing schedule was 5mg at 6 am and 2.5 mg in the afternoon. My afternoon dose was wearing off long before 6:30 AM when I got up in the morning, and it was too soon for my 6 AM dose to be working.

In February of 2010 I couldn't take it any longer. With some help from my Mom, I did some research and found out that most people with Addison's take another steroid for cortisol replacement. I read that Hydrocortisone is much more quickly metabolized and is easier on your body. Desperate to feel better, I decided I wanted to switch. Talking to my doctor about this was scary, I wasn't sure if he would agree to it. (My mistrust of doctors is a whole different story.) But I have a great Endocrinologist, who is very willing to discuss any questions I have about my treatment. I was happy to find out that Hydrocortisone was another drug he was willing to prescribe. He prescribed Prednisone first because it offers longer-lasting coverage, and you have to take it less than HC (Hydrocorisone), but he was more than willing to let me try something else if I wanted to.

My new dosing schedule with HC went like this: 10 mg at 6 AM, 5mg at 12 noon, and 5mg at 3
PM. I felt better within days. Mornings were bright and sunny again. I started to feel alert and less nauseous, and overtime I built up more and more stamina. In my opinion, HC is a much better option than Prednisone. It's so much more flexible. It only takes 30 minutes to kick in, it's easy to stress dose with HC because the dose is smaller and if you take too much it doesn't give you ill effects for as long. HC also has mineralcorticoid properties just like Fludrocortisone (the other steroid I take), which means that it help keep my electrolytes in balance.

Today I feel like mornings are the best part of my day energy-wise. I take my thyroid medicine at 5 AM, 10 mg of HC at 5:45 AM, then get up around 6:15 or 6:30. I feel strong and ready to face the day. When I take my medicine on schedule, don't have a rough night, and am feeling healthy-I can now expect to have good mornings. I've even started to take Brody on long walks in the morning. The air feels fresh and new, and I feel so far away from 2 years ago.

I am not a doctor, and all of what I write about Addison's disease is learned from experience or is my own opinion. Please make sure to be under a doctor's care if you believe you might have a chronic health condition. 

Monday, May 7, 2012

Why I wish I was best friends with Robin Jones Gunn

found here

I just finished reading "Finally and Forever" by Robin Jones Gunn. It's like the finale to a series you've watched for years on tv... long anticipated, but bittersweet. It all started with the Christy Miller series I read in middle school. This last book was a continuation of the stories started in that series. Robin Jones Gunn has written over 80 books and I think I've read more than half of them. She is my favorite author and I'd recommend anything she's written. Let me tell you why.

Her writing is down to earth. The characters in her novels aren't perfect, and they remind you of yourself. And by the end of many of the books, the characters remind you of the kind of person you want to be. Inspiring things happen to her characters and changes happen in their hearts that make you want to learn and grow in faith.

There are also moments in all of her books that make me stop and read sentences over again- nuggets of truth that I can't help but want to remember. Robin must be a wise woman in person, because the things her characters say are such amazing mini life lessons. I've learned about handling life with more grace from each Robin Jones Gunn book I've read. In many ways I've identified with the different characters she's created, and she writes about how they overcome challenges differently than expected. Her writing about these fictional characters almost gives her readers permission to do the same.

I'd love to have Robin as my best friend, sharing insightful advice to my problems and her opinions about what I should do. If I'm going to be really honest though, I do have some wonderful Robins in my life. Women who care, and are willing to speak into my life. Reading "Finally and Forever" and the Sisterchicks books inspire me to work harder to be caring and involved friend. We need people in our lives that lift us up, bring us along, and point us to God. I'd love to be best friends with Robin, but you know, I think I'd like to be Robin to my friends too. 

Friday, May 4, 2012

A weekend in Columbus

Pictures from last weeks wedding...
The beaming bride, my cousin M. So excited to be getting married the same year!