Tuesday, August 31, 2010

family weekend

Two thursdays ago Steve's mom came into town to finish getting the house ready for closing and also to celebrate Grandma Robinson's 80th birthday!

We had a most excellent dinner of steak, salt potatoes and asparagus... I could live on this meal for quite a while. Soooo tasty. In fact, now that I think about it, I've had steak an awful lot in the last week and a half. This girl's gone back to being a carnivore I guess :P


Here's Mom at dinner, her first one in our house!

The next night was friday, Grandma's official birthday and she wanted to go to Bill Gray's for a fish fry. Two nights of tastiness? Ok, who am I kidding, we eat good food almost every night :) There was about a year that went by for me of eating a lot of pizza and fast food or hardly anything at all, and now that we've settled it's easier to cook.

After the fish fry we went back to Grandma's house and had some delicious carrot cake... {yum}


Saturday Steve and I headed over to the old house to pick up a few things and he wanted to wash his car. *sniff sniff* last car washing there :(


Then Sunday we went to Macaroni Grill! That place is such fantastically amazing food I just can't even express how I feel about this place. This is Grandma and Uncle Dan (her twin brother) just after dinner.


We returned to her house for birthday cake after that


The whole weekend was a little deja vous for me. I was reminded of my Grandma Boss's 80th birthday TWENTY years ago! She would have been 100 this March. And then again, the whole day flashed me back to Grandma Boss's 88th birthday... not sure why, but it did. I also can't get over the fact that I have a grandma again :)

cut some cake

It's a terrific feeling... and I am constantly reminded just how much I miss my first grandparents... but makes me appreciate the ones I have now all the more :)


Wednesday, August 25, 2010


I began writing this post over 4 months ago and didn't have the ability to finish it well... sometimes this kind of thing just has to sit and marinate for awhile... but here it is now :)


I've been so blessed by the comments received on my wedding invitations. I can tell you with much sincerity that our hearts are written out in those invitations. Steve and I are so amazed at what God has given us in these past few months as we've moved from meeting, to dating, to engagement and now soon to marriage. Our relationship has bloomed from hesitant hellos to loving embraces and I stand in complete awe at how gracious God is to show me such true and honest love.

What I want to write about though is more of a rabbit trail off this topic. Though it very much relates to my relationship with Steve and the promises of God. I may go on a couple tangents here but if you care to see this through to the end I hope to wrap up in a way that brings hope to the hurting.

So I begin...

I had always believed from the bottom of my heart that my Grandma Boss would be alive to see my first baby. And in preparation for that she made a baby blanket for that day.

I never saw that blanket, but I know it's there... even though Grandma isn't anymore. When the day comes for me to receive that blanket I know I'll totally lose it as it will be the way that Grandma shares that day with me. I loved all of my grandparents, but I had a very special bond with my Grandma Boss.

She and my Grandpa moved into live with my family in 1996. Grandpa passed away in the summer of '98 but Grandma stayed with us. She was a constant in our home. A quiet woman, with words that would throw you off every now and again. She kept us on our toes determined to retain her identity even with weakening bones from osteoporosis and several bouts with breast cancer. She was always cleaning her apartment, having her friends over and cooking her own meals... climbing on counters to reach the top shelf (until my mom would catch her and beg her to ask someone to help her do those things!) She was fiesty but you would never know it to look at her. She prayed daily. We knew that if Grandma Boss was praying for it, it would happen. She knew the Lord and He knew her. My mom has spent many mornings in the chair she used to pray in waiting on the Lord knowing he had met Grandma there so many times before.

When she passed away in February 2006, through tears, we celebrated knowing she was once again with her love and safe in the arms of Jesus. At her funeral we did everything we knew she would want but never ask for.

OK, now, that was not all irrelevant, but mostly I said all that to tell you about her favorite song. An old hymn, His Eye Is On The Sparrow.

In April of this year Steve and I went to a marriage conference that my parents had given us tickets to as a Christmas gift. I was skeptical at first because quite honestly the fact that we weren't married yet and my pre-conceived notions about marriage conferences being for people who had problems in their marriage ran around in my head. I had no idea what to expect, but what we experienced that weekend was truly inspiring. I saw that yes, people who have problems in their marriage could very well benefit from a conference such as the one we attended, but at the same time, if more couples attended them while not having problems they may be able to head them off before they start!

It was full of fun stories from the speakers and great resources and activities that we did together. It wasn't awkward at all... except when the one couple we knew there that was from our church started making comments about our future sex life... however, NOT the conference's problem ;)

During one of the sessions the speaker told a moving story about how he was able to connect with the amazing grace and love that God pours over us and it was through a song. I realized as the first note passed over his lips that it was His Eye is on the Sparrow, and tears began to roll from my eyes. It wasn't the person singing the song but what he said about it... and the message the song brings.

I realized in that same moment that on our wedding invitations was the small symbol in the form of a sparrow... and my heart felt light.

When I began the process of working on a design for our invitations, I told Maureen (my friend who made them) that my desire was to be able to incorporate something about my grandma that noone would really catch on to but that I would always know was there. I wanted her to be a part of our day...

And as I received comments from my lovely readers saying that they loved the sparrow it still had not clicked. When I heard the speaker sing that song it all hit at once.

I found that His eye really is on the sparrow looking after my deepest thoughts, hopes and desires. And I knew in my heart that on our wedding day my Grandma was able to be right there with us in spirit.

So although it was an unintentional detail, I was so unbelievably reminded of God's supernatural love and ability to watch over even the smallest things. Here are the words to the wonderful hymn...

  1. Why should I feel discouraged, why should the shadows come,
    Why should my heart be lonely, and long for heav’n and home,
    When Jesus is my portion? My constant Friend is He:
    His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me;
    His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me.
    • Refrain:
      I sing because I’m happy, I sing because I’m free,
      For His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me.
  2. “Let not your heart be troubled,” His tender word I hear,
    And resting on His goodness, I lose my doubts and fears;
    Though by the path He leadeth, but one step I may see;
    His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me;
    His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me.
  3. Whenever I am tempted, whenever clouds arise,
    When songs give place to sighing, when hope within me dies,
    I draw the closer to Him, from care He sets me free;
    His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me;
    His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me.


Tuesday, August 24, 2010

freakhogstupendousnessfest 2010

July 2009
phone call with my bff Alicia
pining away about going to the beach
a decision was made.

we were beach-bound:
North Carolina

as little as possible

Trip name:

Because we can


And we did. Here we are actually on Myrtle Beach in SC but most of the week was spent at a sandy campground in Wilmington, NC on Carolina Beach.

While we would love to be able to repeat trips to the beach every summer, that's just not realistic. So this year's fest looked a little different:


We decided to make a weekend trip down to Accord, NY near Poughkeepsie (because I'm sure noone, not even an upstater would know where Accord is) to visit our college friend Dave.

I drove first to Alicia's place of employment to pick her up... and while waiting for her to get done I did some recon.



But soon enough it was over and we headed back to the site to store section where she clocked out and we were headed on our way.


What's documentary of a wal-mart worker without pictures of said worker with random other workers?


This is the point I was not allowed to go past. So I stood outside the door with my very large camera and lens (which looks so much bigger with a lens hood on) and got stared at by the marties walking in.


still waiting to get on with freakhogstupendousnessfest 2010!!!


Another question: what's a road trip without appropriate window paint detailing the event?!

(word of caution: even though car window paint is made for *ahem* car windows it may still take hours to scrape it all off)






It's a long drive without a lot of places to stop... capiche?

Once we arrived at Dave's we toured his house and talked of making a bonfire... but to woods were too dry to do that. We reminisced about the *old* days and played dutch blitz until it was time for bed. The next day we went to church in Kingston and had a picnic after, returned home for another rousing game of blitz and then headed on our way home. It was a short trip, but great to be with good friends nonetheless.

In putting this post together, I felt it was appropriate to gather the other pictures we have taken over the past few years of our get-togethers...


This was our first trip to see eachother in Syracuse which is where Dave went to college at ESF. We were at a high school musical of the Sound of Music in this pic.


Among other things we did that weekend, this is possibly my favorite memory and most definitely my favorite picture of the trip. No explanation really needed, you'll either see the humor or you will not ;)

three of us

Then a few months later we had another splendiforousnessfest where we learned some ninja skills and trained my kitten to be an assassin (see below)




Most recently, we all got together back in October when Dave's brother got married and we travelled to Troy to photograph the wedding.

Good times...

So from now on, freakhogstupendousnessfest will refer to any one summer event had with Alicia. Any others may join but two will remain the same. I'm accepting applications for next summer where the plan is the Outer Banks in September!


vacation summer 2010

Last year around the same time I met Steve, his family was going through a huge life change. His dad got laid off from his job of 20+ years but thankfully was able to find another job very similar to the one he was laid off from quickly. However, it was 5 hours away in Allentown, PA. His parents put the house up for sale and Dad moved to PA to live in essentially a bachelor pad so that Mom could stay here and sell the house.

Along with all those changes there was a death in the family, an engagement, marriage and various moves. Just a lot going on in the Robinson family... Consequently, as a result of new jobs, moves and all other factors weighing in, the Robinson family vacation was a little different than years past.

There is a small cabin set in the Adirondack mountains that Steve's family has travelled to every year since he was about 2. They missed the year his baby sister was born but other than that have been every year. And sadly this year we were missing some of the family, but we still managed to make it into a very memorable time.


Usually it's mom and dad robinson along, obviously, but since they couldn't make it we invited my mom and dad. And my daddy brought me flowies :) sunflowies :D


This is the view from the cabin looking down the short trail to the waterfront.


At the waterfront there is a little dock and some sand... so it's kind of a beach!



my Dad :)





Funny story. Steve forgot the charger to his electric razor... which we discovered on the first day up there as he was about half done shaving his head... lol. So he turned into a mountain man the rest of the week ;)


Another funny story. There were ducks everywhere and they came to visit often... in hopes of food obviously :P One day in particular though we didn't have any ducks around, so we went out in the rowboat looking for some. We found these guys and fed them some stale chips and bread.

Then on the way back we ran into a gaggle of little ducklings and as we fed them they followed us back all the way to our dock. They were literally eating out of my hand and long story short, I ended up catching one. I'm almost afraid to post the pictures of my duck catch and the consequential mama duck attacking me, but if I get enough comments saying you want to see how it went down, then I guess I'll have to oblige.


We rented a 100mm f/2.8 macro lens for the wedding I did at the end of July, but when picking the dates to have it accidentally got it a week early. Which was actually kind of nice because we both got a chance to play with it. I really loved using this lens and in all reality did not get as much use out of it at the wedding as I would like... but it was still a lot of fun and definitely on my wish list. This moss picture is one of the ones I took with it... along with the sunflower picture.


A fallen tree we saw on our rowboat ride to lure in some duckies...


and my face after capturing one of said ducks!

It was a fantastic vacation and I can't wait for next summer to do it all over but this time I hope everyone can be there together!


Monday, August 23, 2010

the honeymoon

This post along with a couple others I realized I've left in draft form the last couple months, so I'm revising and getting them up! Hence the weeks/months strike-off ;)

It should really be called the honeymoon vacation, because really, the honeymoon isn't over! Being married the last 3 weeks months has been amazing, and while we've already run into challenges, I am more convinced today than the day we took our vows that we were brought together by God.

norwegian sky

This is the first view of our ship from the terminal, as we walked down the hallway to board we noticed they were touching up the paint. I thought it was just so cool that even though we were cruising in the Caribbean that our ship was decorated Hawaiian... I love Hawaii. I've been there twice when my brother was stationed in Pearl, it was so amazing. Steve and I most definitely want to go there and share that experience together! This ship was decorated Hawaiian because before it became the Norwegian Sky, it was actually the Pride of Aloha.

gettin on the boat

This was our stateroom. Totally tiny, but we didn't need a whole lot of room. There was plenty to do on the ship and lots of food to eat :)

in our stateroom


This is the breakwater in the channel out of Miami... there were some kids out fishing on it.


The boat that made this wake in the channel was a 40-50 foot thrill ride that's goal was to get its passengers soaked ;) I think they were using the cruise ship's wake to do so.

hand and sea

Yes, the water really was that blue.

sunset over miami

We chose to get a balcony room and it just so happened that every evening when the ship sailed, we were on the side with a sunset. That was just so cool! On our way out of the Miami port I took the most pictures... possibly because I felt like I was in an episode of CSI Miami?


Whenever I go on vacation, I like to get/do something that will mark the time and make a memory... This time I decided to get my hair braided. While my braids were complimented and totally "in" down there, when I got home I felt a little out of place ;) I was definitely praised by the locals though for being a blondie white girl with my whole head in braids... they called me Bahama Mama {ha!}

braids 2

rum cake

All braided up in Nassau, the whole ordeal only took about an hour. Plus the time it took to go find more money after my head was only half done ;) We then toured about on the island of Nassau and took pictures of ourselves with random pirates around. Steve in his classic Captain Morgan pose...

gorgeous hibiscus

What's a trip to the bahamas (or anywhere tropical) without pictures of the beautiful hibiscus flower?

before and after

The first of these two was taken as we got off the ship (which is in the background there) and the second when we got back on


Gotta document the braids while they were still fresh! They got so frizzy after only a few days...

towel friends

When we would come back to our room after dinner there would be little towel animal friends waiting for us. The ship gave lessons on how to make the lol, the only one we remember how to make really was the monkey ;)



It was a beautiful vacation! We had a lot of fun and when we got home we really got to having some fun! Somehow, I almost feel like real life is more fun than playing all the time :) Makes you appreciate the down time more maybe? I am loving married life, my husband and all the changes that this past year has brought :)


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