[#blessed]

#blessed

This past weekend was a wonderfully crazy one.

 

Short version:

-I met Peter’s kids.

-And spent Easter with his family.

 

Long version:

As I walked up to Peter’s house late Saturday morning, I started getting nervous again. I thought I had shaken all my jitters and worries, but apparently that wasn’t the case. What kind of questions are they going to ask me? How is this supposed to work with him if they don’t like me? What if I’m not ready to meet them? My hands were instantly sweaty as I knocked on the door, but within 30 seconds all the uneasiness went away. His daughter, who’s 4.5, told me she wanted me to sit with her in the recliner until we left. I think I was trying to prepare for meeting them by thinking of it as an interview with serious questions and such, when really, kids that age just want someone to play with and pay attention to them.

It probably helped that his kids are both really well behaved, respectful, and we had stuff planned. Kids are funny though, they don’t understand having a need to be accepted and liked, and therefor they just accept and like everyone. Peter says they really like me, and I’m not trying to be cynical, but I can’t help but think that they like everyone. He assures me though that they really like me. Before they went to bed, they asked, “Miss Stephanie, are we going to see you tomorrow?!” And that’s when I about died.

Honestly, in my perfectly planned out life plan I didn’t see any kids in my life until I was at least 30. I want them, but I didn’t think I’d have them until later on, but life has a funny way of throwing you curve balls that really end up being underhand pitches. (You like that baseball analogy?) Peter was an unexpected surprise that has turned into this wonderful thing I can’t imagine being without, and he just happens to come with two adorable, sweet humans. He told me before our second date, which was the day after the first, that he had two kids. At that point I already had such a strong connection with him that even though they were eminent, I didn’t have any worries or insecurities about the things that would go along with that in the future, which I saw with him before that second date. The heart is an amazing thing, just when you think it’s as full as you’d ever need it to be, it makes room for more, and I’m happy to fill it.

 

Sunday¬†morning started early, but I showed up with coffee, so everything was fine. The four of us drove to Everett, where Peter’s parents live, and went to church. Lunch was lovely, and I was appreciative of all the veg friendly foods available for me. (Peter’s mom even made the potato casserole without cream of chicken!) After lunch we just sat around visiting, talking about Jean’s book, my trip to Dubai, and a multitude of other things. I don’t think any of us really wanted to leave, but Peter had to get the kids back to their mom, so we had to go.

For me, it’s never been about the holiday, but more about the people you get to see and spend time with.¬†Holidays without my family have been somewhat emotional for me¬†the last year or so; I’m still figuring out how to come to terms with this, because, in the long run, I probably won’t be moving back to Syracuse. Family is one of the things that I hold dearest, and to be able to have found someone who understands that, and is the same way, is immeasurably amazing. It’s an¬†incredible feeling finally realizing that you’ve made yourself a new home.

 

– S

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[Field of Floral Dreams]

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Peter and I drove up to La Conner for the Tulip Festival. I give him props for agreeing to do that, but I also think he likes taking long drives, plus we ate really good food. AND it’s not like I dragged him into any antique shops or anything…oh wait…

It was a gloriously sunny day across the western half of Washington.¬†I’m sure you can relate to the feeling of the sun on your skin and face, even though your face is covered in skin, after a long, dreary winter. It’s like your whole body and soul is rejuvenated and reborn. That might be a slight exaggeration, but it’s a pretty good feeling regardless. We stopped at one of the many tulip fields and just walked around the rows and rows of yellow and red flowers basking in the sun.

If I haven’t told you already, then you should know, I’m a flower fiend. Between April and October you can almost always find fresh cut flowers or some other form of plant life in my apartment or office at work. They make everything better, and these fields of tulips in full bloom were no exception. I couldn’t go more than 30 seconds without smiling. Peter kept asking me what was up, and I just kept telling him I was happy. Happy to be there with him, happy to be surrounded by flowers, and happy the sun was out.

After that detour we headed into “downtown” La Conner, which is really just a “Main St.” There were a handful of shops, lots of food options, and a bountiful amount of sexy cars which kept Peter’s head turning every couple of feet. We walked up and down the streets for a while and then headed to a restaurant that Peter’s mom had suggested. If I can avoid veggie burgers at restaurants I usually do because 9 times out of 10 it’s a frozen patty that really isn’t that good. There was plenty for me to choose from, but something was telling me to get a veggie burger, so I did, with caramelized onions and Tillamook cheddar cheese. No joke, best veggie burger I have ever had in my entire life, including ones that I’ve made from scratch. It was crunchy on the outside and flavorful and soft on the inside, but it didn’t fall apart, which is the problem I had with the ones I’ve tried to make. Every bite made me close my eyes with pleasure. If I was turned on by food, this veggie burger wouldn’t have had to try very hard to get me to go home with it. I mean, seriously.

We left after my affair with the veggie burger and walked back to the car to head home. Besides the traffic we hit, it was a pretty flawless day. I’d be happy with a couple of days like that a year, but I’ve been lucky to have far more a couple so far this year. 2014 is shaping up to be pretty amazing.

 

– S

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[Playing Catch-up]

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It’s been awhile since I last posted, and for that, I apologize.

Here’s the short version of what’s been going on:

  • I turned 25.
  • My mom came to visit.
  • I fell in love.

 

Here’s the long version:

You know when you say you love someone for the first time it feels weird coming out of your mouth even if you wholeheartedly believe it? Yeah, that happened. After Mr. Sullivan and I exchanged those words Valentine’s Day weekend (a touch cliche, but it felt right) for a week afterwards it felt a little strange. I have never, ever, ever, ever felt this way about someone and I think we might be in it for the long haul…but stay tuned to find out.

I turned 25, but my last couple birthdays have been kind of depressing. Last year it was the first one I spent away from my mom, dad, and sister so to say it was weird, is an understatement. It was so nice having my aunt, uncle, and cousin to celebrate with, but it wasn’t the same; I didn’t really have any friends and I was in this new, unfamiliar place far away from everything I’d ever known. (I’m sorry that was so dramatic.)

This year it was totally different; I have friends, and a wonderful boyfriend who went above and beyond what I was expecting. I had a lovely morning and got flowers delivered to me at work (bravo) and also received an orchid from Sara, who is the sweetest. My work day was easy and lots of people said ‘Happy Birthday.’ (Last year basically nobody at work knew who I was, and my birthday was on a Sunday.) As soon as I got home, which was early, I hopped in the shower and got ready for dinner. My handsome man picked me up curb side and even showed up with more gifts, which I was not expecting; flowers and dinner would have been more than enough. BUT, he got me a lovely Kiehl’s set of lotions, facial cleanser, and soaps, AND a very generous gift card to Aritzia. Then on top of all that, we went to Palisade, which is tres nice.¬†I felt so special, loved and like I was the luckiest girl in the world.

Three days later, my mom came to visit me! There were some flying issues, but she managed to make it to Seattle only 12 hours late. I felt like we went non-stop for four days straight; we went to the Space Needle, Chihuly exhibit, took the monorail downtown and explored Pike Place Market, visited the Seattle Art Museum, had dinner with Mr. Sullivan (that’s right, Mama Liz met the boyfriend), spent an entire day at the Salish Lodge and Spa getting massages and mani-pedis, we had dinner next to Snoqualmie Falls, ate a late breakfast at Toulouse Petit, drove up to the casino and outlet mall in Tulalip, and then finally met up with my aunt and uncle for a late lunch Sunday afternoon. My mom spent a couple of days with my cousin and we reunited Wednesday night when I brought her home with me. She was able to venture around city center and visited the EMP museum Thursday. When I got home from work we went to see the Ballard locks and got dinner at Red Mill. Obviously it was a tearful goodbye, but she’s my mama and I’m gonna miss her…until the next time.

So that’s that. Hope it was worth the wait!

 

– S

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[273] Putting in Some Hours

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Fridays have a soft spot in my heart, as they probably do for most people. A small group of us went out for a bittersweet celebratory lunch. I decided that after my disaster of a letterpress class on Tuesday, I’d give studio hours a shot and start working on some Christmas/holiday cards. I was there for a couple hours getting a bunch done and then went and got dinner and drinks with a friend. Overall I’d say it was a pretty good day!

– Stephanie

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[258] Anti-Monotony

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Today was actually really nice for a Thursday. Besides the typical work day, a couple of us went out to lunch to break up the monotony of the day, and I left early because it was slow, and I stayed late a couple other days this week. I wasn’t supposed to get to hang out with this really cool guy until way later, but he magically became available 4 hours earlier so we grabbed us some happy hour drinks, he helped me do my grocery shopping, and in return I made dinner. We watched the¬†Bills lose, and then just hung out on the couch by the fire. I totally didn’t hate it at all.

– Stephanie

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[252] Hallelujah!

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Besides the fact that it’s Friday, something else amazing happened. A bunch of us ladies went to The Commons for lunch to celebrate someone’s last day. Lunch was normal; we ate food, chatted, and were generally merry. When we hopped on a shuttle back to our building, everything changed, but for the better. Our shuttle driver was an absolute pleasure to be around. His laugh was infectious, and his words, kind and from the heart. We asked why there was a small, lonely shoe in his console, and he said, “Where I’m from in the Philippines, when you find a child’s shoe, as a cab driver,¬†you put it in your vehicle to remember your children or grandchildren so that you drive safely for whoever is in your car.” Naturally we all melted, and then asked what his name was. Everyone calls him¬†Hallelujah Tony because there are, like, 5 Tonys: there’s the tall one, the short one, the fat one, the skinny one, and then him. I feel like there’s so much more I wanted to say about Hallelujah Tony, but it was such a short shuttle ride, and now I wish I knew more about him. Service with a smile!

– Stephanie

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[249] Bite Me, Tuesday.

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Today ended up being pretty neutral, but only because the good and the bad canceled each other out. In true Stephanie fashion I’ll make a list for you.

Good:

  1. I had an off-site for work in Seattle. It was just my team, so 6 of us, it was a lot of fun, plus we talked about some pretty exciting work things.
  2. I got a new pair of pants.
  3. I had a fantastic lunch from this little Mexican place in Queen Anne.
  4. I had a really great letterpress class, and I’m super excited for the project I’m working on.
  5. I have a heated mattress pad on my bed.

Bad:

  1. It took me over an hour to get to the off-site in Seattle.
  2. My pants ripped up the ass, and I didn’t realize until I sat down on a cold wood chair, so that’s why I got a new pair of pants.
  3. Lunch was great, but I walked there in my ripped pants.
  4. I was mouth breathing my entire letterpress class, and I was so doped up on sick people drugs my brain wasn’t functioning so I hardly got anything done.
  5. I didn’t get home until 10:30pm and I had heels on all day so I wanted to saw my feet off.

So, yeah…that was my Tuesday.

– Stephanie

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[235] Laughing Cures All Ailments

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Lunch with the girls from work is hardly ever dull. I look forward to it every day actually, except the days I’m slammed and have to eat alone at my desk. It’s not usually everyone, every day, but today Corina made a guest appearance. It started off like a regular lunch: we got our food, or nuked it in the microwave, grabbed a drink, and headed outside to a table. I made a comment about Amber’s laugh and how guttural and unfakeable it is so naturally Corina said, “I’m gonna try and mimic your laugh, Amber.” So Amber laughed, and Corina tried to copy it, except it wasn’t very close, which made Amber and I laugh harder, and louder, and then Corina tried again, and even though it was closer, it still wasn’t it. By this point Amber and I are actually laughing so hard we’re both crying. Even after Corina left, we laughed for another solid 5-10 minutes.

I’m still giggling now just thinking about it.

 

– Stephanie

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[230] Emotional Gymnastics

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Today started out great; I heard thunder before even getting out of bed, and another round of it before I left for work. See, out here, at least in the Seattle area, thunder and lightning are a rare occurrence and people freak out over it. I cherish it. Work was good; plenty to do, but not enough to stress over. Then lunchtime rolled around and I started feeling dizzy and lightheaded. If I hadn’t been drinking water all morning and had just eaten an apple, I probably would have figured it was one of those things. I ate lunch anyways hoping it would help but instead, I started experiencing waves of hot and cold. After a co-worker felt my forehead and said I felt a little warm, I decided to head home and hopefully sweat it out. So I’m curled up on the couch with lots of blankets, soup, water, and football. Now if I only had someone to rub my back…

UPDATE: It is actually thunder and lightninging outside right now. So happy.

 

– Stephanie

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