Thursday, October 22, 2015

Weird things are happening...

I took this picture of Georgia the other day:
It shocked me- she just looks so "grown up" suddenly. I know, I know... I have these moments from time to time.

Then this morning I was fixing her hair and finally realized what's been "off" when I fix her hair recently. Standing behind her I can no longer look down and see the entire top of her head. The top of her head is probably about at my chin. 

I tried to carry her up the stairs the other night when she fell asleep in the car on the way home. I realized it was probably my last time to ever do that. She's just too "big" now...and that's why I never complained about carrying her everywhere. I knew this day would come- the day I wouldn't be able to. 8 1/2 years isn't a bad track record. 

She's eating off of "adult" plates now at dinner- (welcome to the struggle of your food running into each other). She is getting braces- already has the expander in. 

To make things worse I also just realized that come December we will be half way done with elementary school. 

How did this happen?

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Post Engagement...

Post Engagement- stick with me as I get all of this out. One day I will be glad I did. You see, when Georgia was born I began a blog to remember. Surely you think, "Oh, I'll remember all of those things" and you do...the thing is- what MAKES you remember them? I've spent countless hours sitting back and re-reading what I wrote about her growing up- some is "published" some is not. But it's her life story. I cherish this. Sure- I remember her birth- but to go back and re-read her "birth story" that I wrote as soon as I was able.... I'm glad that I did.

So piece by piece I want to write down and remember every little detail of how Lee and I became one. I skipped a lot- our meeting, dating, etc. and hopefully I will get to that one day, but for now our engagement and marriage is where we will begin...

So we were engaged!! The moment I had waited for. First up on the list- tell our children!!! Georgia came home that Sunday. She pranced in and plopped on the couch to begin chatting with me.... "Mom, wait, what's that?" as she grabbed my hand. "Oh...that's nice- did Lee give that to you?? WAIT! MOM IS THAT AN ENGAGEMENT RING??? ARE YOU GETTING MARRIED???" Yes Georgia, Lee proposed! "OH MY GOSH I'M SO EXCITED!!!!" She jumps up and runs to give Lee a giant hug then begins to ask the question a million others did "When are you getting married?" Well- we don't know yet. "Well, Where?" Georgia, I have no idea. little did I know, my daughter was a wedding planner as she whipped out a clip board and began to take notes on the 'best places to get married' see picture below...
1. Bayou Bend
2. Beach
3. Disney World (If only she knew....)
4. Horse Back Riding
5. Castle in California
6. Castle in Austin
7. The Alamo (that would be classic...)
8. Cruise Ship

So the question resounded from all...."When are you getting married?" , "What's the date??". I thought to myself, "Ummm we JUST got engaged!! We don't have a date!"- oh but I spoke too soon. These questions prompted us to look at a calendar.... many of you know Lee and I have opposite weekend schedules with the kids- meaning when I have Georgia, he doesn't have the boys and vice versa. Meaning we never have a weekend together with our children, a holiday, etc. EVER. Last year was bit different but from here on out- nothing. EXCEPT for summers. My schedule with Georgia changes, his does not- which enables us to about 4 weekends together with our kids, 3 weekends to ourselves and a few weekends split. As we looked at the calendar we realized after summer 2015 we would not have our children together on a weekend until June of 2016! Obviously the three of them being present was our main concern. That- coupled with the fact we still had separate households pushed us to the only possible date to wed- August 8, 2015. Lee didn't want to wait almost an entire year to be together as a family, nor did I. So after throwing around a few different ideas we settled on this date. 2 months and 8 days away.

First things first though- regardless of the date and location- I needed a dress!!! My wedding dress appointment was 3 days after our engagement. (Can you tell I've dreamed of trying on wedding dresses since the day I was born?!) My sweet friend Gina led me to a little boutique that sells off the rack custom and designer gowns that you don't have to wait 6-8 weeks to be shipped then altered. I cannot believe I found my "dream dress" in one day.... but I did. I knew the moment I tried it on, then after at the tailor- that it was perfect. I could envision my future husband's face when I walked down the aisle and I knew- he would love it. I can tell you now- I hit the nail on the head. ;) he was blown away and has told me almost every day since he has never seen me more beautiful.

After deciding on the date you think it would be easy! Not. We wanted a destination wedding but that fell through after Lee's work schedule played out. I thought a wedding in Houston would be "too much" considering we both had children and wanted something intimate with our closest friends and families present. After about a month of going back and forth we realized our only option was Houston. We went one day to look at venues and found the perfect place. I'm still in awe this happened.

Lee was off work and I "conned" him into going to look at a couple of places. We checked out The Bell Tower and last minute The Houston Club. Jeana (who ended up being our wedding coordinator) stayed a bit late to let us come by and see it. We were both blown away but tried to not let on. We knew *this* was the place. I signed the contract on July 7- that's right, one month and one day before our wedding. A month to go. Let's do this.

When people say things are "meant to be", "kismet", "fate", etc., never I have believed that more than with our wedding. If this wasn't the *right* thing so many forces would have never combined to make our day what it was.... too many things fell in the right place than was necessary. I know I was suppose to marry this man, and I'm so glad that I did.

So we sign the contract July 7 and I'm handed a list of "preferred vendors" of which I stare at for a week. The next week I go back to The Houston Club for our tasting. Jeana asks me who my florist, DJ, Officiant, etc is. I have no answers. She and Michelle (her assistant) look at me quizzically? Worriedly? I am three weeks from my wedding and have nothing. Jeana tells me to go home and call the preferred vendor list. I do.... and this is where the magic started...

Call number 1: DJ
I call the DJ- we get on the phone and he gives me a deal better than I could have imagined. I was skeptical- why? Turns out The Houston Club was holding their very first Bridal Open House earlier int he day.... this DJ was going to set up for the open house, for him to stay for my wedding was easy- and naturally he could upgrade everything! Sold!

We pushed through everything else- bridesmaid dresses- worked out uncannily well, all the mother's  and grandmother's dresses- found them and they were gorgeous! The flower girl dress, the boy's outfits. I hacked out invitations, we set a room block at the hotel. RSVP's were coming in...we even decided to use my mom's pastor- met with him and LOVED him. Things were really falling into place. All done. The one last thing was the flowers.... I had my heart set on something and couldn't let it go.....

Sunday, October 4, 2015

Never have I ever...

Been so FAR BEHIND on this!!! For the record the photo above is when Lee asked me to marry him. One of the best days of my life. I am totally backtracking now that I have had a chance to catch my breath (lucky for you!). As we quickly approach our 2 month wedding anniversary I realize that I have YET to give a run down of everything that has occurred.

My apologies for not getting this in prior. It has been the most fantastic whirlwind of my life. I suppose we should start from the beginning- our engagement....May the fairy tale begin!

Once upon a time.... on a rainy Saturday in May Lee and I had plans to celebrate the end of school and the end of an EXTREMELY long sports season. Since the kids are on opposite schedules it isn't often we get a weekend alone. In fact, it only happens twice a year. This particular weekend was our first weekend alone of the year. The weekend before Lee took me shopping (this has quickly become his favorite past time..) to buy a new dress to wear out the upcoming weekend all under the ruse of our "end of season celebration". We found the perfect one and he set about to "surprise" me with where we were to eat. We ended up lucking out when the boy's mom couldn't keep them and we were able to have them through Saturday. :) Slight change of plans but we took them to Westside to swim that day and then dropped them off in the afternoon. We went to the gym after this and this is where things turned interesting.. While at the gym the sky turned black and it began to DOWNPOUR rain. I literally could not see out the windows. We became nervous thinking of another recent time it had down poured and flooded the streets...and my car. We knew we better make a run for it to get home without flooding out yet another vehicle.

We made our way home in Lee's porsche, which by the way- is NOT a good car to navigate flooded streets in. We were able to make it about 4 blocks away when we realized the car would not make it through the quickly rising water. We parked it and did what we have done before- made a run for it. 2 hours before we were to go to dinner we are running in thigh high water through the streets to get back to his house. Classic!

Once we got home we realized the power was out. I am still thinking we are going to dinner just to celebrate "end of the season" so I say, "We can just cancel...Let's do this another night." To which Lee replies, "No, go ahead and take a bath. I'll bring candles in so you can see. Hopefully the power will be on by the time you are finished and we can get dressed, go get the car and go to dinner." umm... okay. Sure enough- he was right. I bathed and began to get ready, the power magically was restored in perfect time. He called and pushed back our reservations from 7pm to 9pm and we were off!

When we pulled up to TABLE I began to wonder. TABLE is where we officially decided to become exclusive the year before on May 25. Here we were back again just slightly over a year later. I'll never forget Lee coming back from the bathroom during our first visit and nervously asking me if I wanted to be his "girlfriend". ;)

The restaurant was pretty empty due to the downpour earlier but a few tables were seated around us. We ate dinner then turned down dessert. Lee went to the restroom and I began to think, "Maybe I was wrong and he ISN'T proposing tonight..." He returned, sat down and then he turned to me and took my hands in his. He told me how much he loved me and what I meant to him in his life. Tears began to fill his eyes, and mine as well. What I meant to his boys and what Georgia meant to him. That he never thought he would ever find anyone that he wanted to commit his life to in this way but after being with me there wasn't a question or hesitation in his mind. He wanted me to be "his" and to be "mine". He said he loved me more every day- that there was something about me that he could never place that drove him crazy and made him so in love with me. Then he pulled out a ring- he got down on one knee, "Melanie, Will you marry me and be my wife and spend forever with me?"

Of course I said "Yes!"

He put the most gorgeous cushion cut diamond in the most perfect setting on my finger and kissed me. We wiped a few tears off our faces and I couldn't stop smiling. A few of the tables had noticed what had just happened and congratulated us. The manager came by with Champagne and we toasted to our engagement. :)

Little did I know from this moment on I would plan a whirlwind wedding and be "Mrs. Loyd" by the end of summer.

Stay tuned for the rest.... If you are a true believer in things that are "meant to be" in the next few posts you will see, as I did, almost everything about our wedding and Lee and I together is "meant to be" there just isn't another explanation. You'll see.... ;)