Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Why growing up feels weird

Here I am, weeks away from being a first-time mom. While most of me is sooooo ready for it all, a part of me feels really weird that I am this grown up.

Here's a situation that happened today: We need to set up our pediatrician for our son before he arrives. As I was looking and reading about one that I need to call and talk to and figure everything out with, I thought to myself, "I wish my mom would just call them and do this for me".

Then it hit me... I AM THE MOM NOW.

I am the one that my son is going to need to call and set up doctors appointments. I am the one who will have to figure out the hard stuff for him till he's old enough.

After that strange realization then I checked my TimeHop app. Which happens to be one of my favorite apps, but it always makes me feel weird too.

This season of life 7 years ago I was a senior in high school wrapping up my last couple of weeks as a high school student. School was a joke, I don't know how but I had like 4 off periods and my friends and I seemed to always be going on some adventure. We were running off to the lake every warm day that existed, dying each others hair in the middle of the night, driving around our tiny town with music as loud as we could in our crappy high school cars.  All the while our moms were still making all our meals and doing all our laundry!!! Care. Free.

Then theres 6, 5, 4 years ago. College years. THE BEST. We were still doing spontaneous things all the time, we just had to care about school now a little bit more than in high school. We also had to do our own laundry and find our own food now. I lived with 6 girls and there was never a dull moment. There was always someone at the house to go eat with or run to target with, talk a walk around ACU with. Always fun to be had, always.


3 years ago I was getting ready to get married. What an exciting time!! I was planning my wedding and my life with Judson. We were on cloud 9 in love and daydreaming of our futures. 

2 years ago at this time we were married and getting ready for Judson to graduate. Our whole first year of marriage we were still in school, so it was basically just like playing house. It was AWESOME. We didn't know true adulthood or responsibility yet, we were just 23 year olds in love and married, trying to figure everything out. We would always be doing something - going golfing, running, fishing, walking, road tripping, shopping, ALWAYS doing something together. In the spring we started interviewing  for our first jobs, packing our house up, and having a garage sale to have some summer money. We were about to make our first big move together and really start our adulthood. 

1 year ago we were wrapping up our first year of teaching in a tiny town far away from everything and everyone we knew. It was definitely a year of growth, but we got to grow together. We worked down the hall from each other so we got to eat lunch together every day and we were all we had. Attached at the hip the whole year. I was always getting ready to run my second half marathon. We got offered new jobs so we also were preparing and packing our house up to move AGAIN. 

Now here I am today, weeks away from being a mom for the first time. I think a part of it feels weird because even though I'm years older now, I am still the girl who likes to run off to the lake whenever it's warm outside, and not stay indoors or get the laundry finished. I'm still the girl who likes spontaneous night time walks, and not 8:30-9:00 bedtimes. I'm still the girl who likes to go and do and see, and not be tied down by responsibilities and stuck in routine.

I think a part of us all feels that way, no matter how old you are. While change is good and new seasons always bring new blessings, you are still always that person somewhere down deep you were years ago. That's why adulthood can seem so suppressive. Somedays I want to just run down the street like a crazy person because I'm craving adventure so bad. 

Life is full of ebb and flow, though. In a couple of weeks my life will change in ways I can't even mentally prepare for. And even though I'm going to be the rock solid that my son relies on for needs and consistency and I will be the one who makes his doctor appointment calls, I think it's important he know that his momma is someone who likes to go and do and see and create and learn. I hope he is all those things as well. It's all about balance - and sometimes balancing feels weird. 

Thursday, November 5, 2015

Dear baby

Dear baby,

I’ve known about you for a couple of months but I’ve dreamt about you for years. Your dad and I have tried to imagine you since we were engaged. What will you look like? What will your personality be? We are so overjoyed that it won’t be too much longer till these questions are answered!

I have always wanted to be a mom, ever since I was a little girl. A mom and a wife. I have been a wife for over 2 years now and I’m so thrilled I get to take on my second dream role! Not just a mom, but your mom.

I have so many emotions about the kind of mom I want to be to you. About the things I want to teach you, the things I want to protect you from, the things I want you to grow up to be. I know I’m going to make mistakes, because this is my first time to do all this. You will watch me fail and worry, but I promise that you will see the joy you are to us way more. You are our first. For a while you will be our only. Someday I’ll watch you make your own friends, I’ll watch you forge your own paths, and I’ll watch you start your own future, but you will ALWAYS be our first baby.  

Now, I could write you a book about the dad you are getting. Man, did I pick him right. You are the luckiest child in the world to have a dad like him. He will play with you even when he’s exhausted. He will do all he can to give you the best life experiences. He’s going to be an amazing example to you of what a God-seeking man is. He will make mistakes too, but when he does he will never be too proud to apologize. I can’t wait to take you to all of his games he coaches and let you see for yourself the hard-working, leader he is. He’s going to be strict with you sometimes, but I promise it’s because he wants you to have everything that’s good in this world.  He talks to you all the time already in my tummy and is praying for you constantly. You will have a role model for life in the man that your father is.

We are so excited for you, baby. We are nervous too. 

But no matter what comes our way - you are ours. And we are yours.

Tuesday, October 13, 2015




We are so excited! Overjoyed! Exhausted! 
I found out on Labor Day. Judson was gone to football practice. Did you just read that? I was home ALONE when I found out. 

I've taken probably 50 pregnancy tests in the 2 years I've been married because every little thing that was weird I would be like "Maybe I'm pregnant?!" and all 50 of those tests have been negative. So, taking this pregnancy test wasn't a big deal initially. We had been trying and I was a week late so randomly I woke up and just thought maybe I should go take a test. I forgot about it while it was loading and then went back in there later to see PREGNANT. 

About 1 billion things go through your mind when you find out your pregnant but one of the first was I HAVE TO TELL JUDSON. I used to have a really cute plan of how to tell him I was pregnant for the first time, but that all went to heck when it really happened. I immediately called him and he was so so happy and excited! 

A few weeks ago we had our first sonogram. EMOTIONS. I can’t even begin to explain what it feels like to be next to the man you are in love with and walk through life with and see the baby that y’all created together. It’s… incredible. Everyone needs to get married and have babies so you can understand. 

little tiny punkin seed

I haven’t had morning sickness (HALLELUJAH) I have been soooo tired though. I also definitely have pregnancy brain already. I cannot think straight or clear for the life of me. And concentrating on something? Forget about it. Wait, what was I saying? 

A word of advice: Don’t teach kindergarten for the first time in your life AND get pregnant for the first time in your life all at the same time. IT’S HARD. Also, it's football season; Judson's busiest time of year. I've never been so worn out in my whole life. Please don't tell me I will eat those words whenever the baby gets here. 

Anyway, to sum up – We are parents! We are so happy! We are so tired! We are so ready for thanksgiving break so we can have a moment to soak in all this life changing stuff! 

Saturday, September 26, 2015

In the beginning... part 3

In case you missed what's going on here, I'm telling my favorite story. The story of my Judson and I and where it all began. In case you missed part 1 and 2 you can find them here:

We left off with me in Germany and Judson back in Abilene, Texas. Still unclear of what we officially are except that we know we like each other a lot.

I'm gallivanting through Europe with my best friend and having a great time though! Obviously we are talking about boys and I'm filling her in on Judson. I haven't told her just how serious my feelings are for him... yet. (in one year from that moment she will be my maid of honor helping me get ready for my wedding in a couple of weeks!)
One night towards the end of our trip I remember we are sleeping in a hostile, which is like a weird, cheap, dorm-like hotel. We are laying on bunk beds and I just start crying. She asks me what's wrong, I tell her I think I love Judson and I know that's crazy because we aren't even boyfriend and girlfriend but I do, I love him. It felt SO good to say it. I just knew I couldn't say it TO HIM.

It was towards the end of July and I was headed back to Texas, exhausted and jet-lagged but excited to finally see that boy again. I came up with a plan to surprise him when I got to Abilene, he thought I wouldn't be there for a few more days. So I texted his best friend and said "You have to get Judson to go to Guitars tonight! YOU HAVE TO!" later he said "He doesn't want to go because you aren't in town but I think I can get him to"

I secretly got to Abilene and got all dolled up with my friends to go surprise him! I had so many butterflies! I also had just gotten my haircut after my trip, 7 inches cut off, that's important in a minute.

I got to Guitars and started searching all over. I couldn't see him.  I went to the bathroom and when I came out THERE HE WAS! I think... We both stood there and starred at each other because HE CUT ALL HIS HAIR OFF TOO! We could barely recognize each other with our new hair cuts! Finally he runs over and we have a long awaited hug with hundreds of people around! He tells me he doesn't want to be here at all right now so we left to our favorite place - a nighttime walk around ACU. On this walk he asks me to officially be his girlfriend and of course I say YES. I couldn't believe I had pushed this away for months now. Absence made the heart grow smarter.

The next couple of days brought giddy and constant calling each other "boyfriend" and "girlfriend". It felt so good to be his. Just 5 days later we went on a date to play putt-putt and then a walk around this lake/park by the zoo in Abilene. We were sitting and talking at the park for a long time and he kept saying "I want to tell you something so bad but I just don't know" and then "I really want to tell you something" but he just wouldn't say it! Finally after hours of talking like we always do, we were looking at each other and I just said, "I love you, too".

His reaction was priceless! His face lit up and he said "Oh my gosh! How did you know? I've loved you for so long. I've wanted to tell you for so long that I love you. And I do, Elizabeth! I love you!"

Game over. Never did I ever ever ever want to say those words to someone else. Never had I ever felt it or meant like I did now.
The next couple of months of dating was everything I could have ever dreamed that having someone pursue me would be like. And 9 months down the road on February 9th, 2013 he got down on one knee in that special place of ours. The place where we had talked for hours and hours getting to know each other, the place where he grabbed my hand and made my heart jump out of my chest, and the place where he asked me to officially be his girlfriend. On a walk around ACU, Judson asked me to be his bride.
And THAT is the story of how it all began.

My favorite story in the world. I feel so blessed to have the love that we have because the older I get the more I realize how much of a rare and precious gift it is. We have grown up together but most importantly we've grown closer through it all. We fell in love as 21 year old college kids, got married at the ripe old age of 22 still not real adults yet, and have learned how to do this thing called life together over the past 2+ years. Sometimes I could just cry when I look at him because I'm so deeply in love with the man he continues to be to me.
My best friend.

In the beginning.. part 2

In case you missed the first part of my favorite story ever you can read it here:

Now we left off at Judson and I having our first kiss. I had been trying really hard to NOT fall for this guy. I feel like it's necessary that I give the world a visual of what Judson looked like back then. I'm not exaggerating when I say LONG HAIRED AND CRAZY.
but still cute.

But again, where we left off... Judson and I had been walking and talking EVERY night for almost two weeks now and that in itself has made him become one of my best friends. We just clicked. We were able to talk and talk about EVERYTHING and it just worked and it made us both happy.
Now WHY did I screen shot these kinds of things and JOURNAL THEM!? I don't know. I just don't know what's wrong with me. But I am so thankful I did because as years pass you forget little things said here or there and now I don't ever have to forget.

So we kissed. And I really liked it. I really liked him but I didn't want to. So now I was working on convincing myself that this was just going to be a really fun summer fling. I could admittedly like him because it's a summer fling! No big deal. NO BIG DEAL.
And here's the thing too I was going places this summer! Literally. I was going to Seattle to run a half marathon and then I was going to Germany for a mission trip for 3 weeks. So nothing "REAL" could come of this. We were having fun and it was fun.

The thing was is that Judson's intentions were not just to have a summer fling with me. If I was being honest at all about what my heart was telling me I would tell you mine weren't either but I just wouldn't let myself be vulnerable to all that yet. Flings don't have consequences if they don't work out (I was telling myself).

So that's how the whole month of May went, we having a lot of fun and were pretty much inseparable. Which if you know us at all you could agree that's basically still how we are now - inseparable. Then June came and my heart just kept falling more and more and more which was making me try to deny that fact more and more.
See that little heart up in the corner there? That's because on June 8th I knew I loved Judson. Not like, oh he's so cute and fun and I love ya bro kind of love. I mean I knew I LOVED him and he was it. Of course I was not going to speak those words at all to anyone! And didn't for a long time!
Then on June 14th we had our first fight.

I was about to start all my traveling and be away from basically a month from Abilene/Judson. I didn't know where we stood and that made me uneasy about leaving. I wasn't his girlfriend so he could talk to/dance with/go on walks with whoever he wanted to while I was gone but the thought of that made my stomach get in knots. Of course, being the stubborn person I am, I wanted the upper hand though. I didn't want him to know that I was insecure about leaving! So when we were hanging out my house that day I said something to him like "You're the best summer fling I've ever had so far" and the look on his face I'll never forget. I knew what I said hurt him and I immediately wanted to take it back. He just kind of blew it off and then shortly left after that. Ugh! Why do I do these things!?

I got ready for a night of dancing with my friends and he was going to Guitars too. He texted me before saying something like "Just so you know, I'm not comfortable kissing in public." KNIFE TO THE HEART. So I said "Who said I want to kiss you in public?" and then we saw each other at Guitars. It was kind of uncomfortable, we tried to just act like nothing was bothering either one of us. We were at a table of people and he said something like, "We're just friends, right Elizabeth?" and my heart sunk. That's what I wanted wasn't it!? Him saying it was the worst thing I'd ever heard. So I was so rude to him and ignored him the rest of the night. He finally pulled me aside and he showed where he had put in his notes a month ago "I know she's the one" and said "Do you think I would write that if I thought we were just friends?" I could not BELIEVE he wrote that about me! And there was no lying that he did it a month ago the date was on there! Then, in front of everyone (after he told me he's not comfortable kissing in public), he picked me up and kissed me! So we stopped fighting. :)

I went off to Seattle and ran my half marathon but we didn't talk a whole lot. Long story short I broke my foot running and Taylor, my roommate, wanted to come stay in Graham with me and then she had tickets to the Rangers game. WELL, GUESS WHO TAGGED ALONG WITH HER!? Judson! He met my parents for the first time, long hair and all, then stayed the night at my parents house! While my best friend and I are in the other room. Brave guy.
Pretty much right after that I left for my 3 weeks in Germany with a 12 hour time difference. I was again nervous about it because Judson and I still hadn't declared that we were exclusive per my request. I went to Abilene for one night before I left and he wrote me an adorable acrostic poem.
He assured me that he wasn't going anywhere while I was going to be gone and that we could pick up right where we left off when I got back. If we can't talk a lot, it's no big deal, he'll be there when I get back. Which sounds nice, but when you have met the person you love and you aren't even really his girlfriend yet and you're leaving the country - it's really hard on the heart.

I wrote him letters to open for everyday I was gone and we facebook messaged every day, he would wake up in the middle of the night to message me across the world. They almost always ended with "I like you so much".

"I hope you're still my friend then" haha meaning I HOPE WE'RE STILL TOGETHER THEN. Oh, and that song he told me to listen to at the end, is now the song playing in our wedding video preview. :) which you should go watch here:

Now when I got BACK from Germany is another part of the story... To be continued...

In the beginning.. part 1

Last night I had a dream about the first couple of dates that Judson and I went on then all of the sudden BARK BARK BARK! My dogs needed to go out and woke me up.

You know when you woke up too early from a good dream and you just lay there and try to force yourself to fall back asleep and start dreaming again at the same moment you woke up from? Well, I was doing that. Then I realized, how about I just lay here and actually just use my memory about the beginning of Judson and I. I can't remember the last time I thought about these times, it's been a loooong time. Maybe it was because yesterday my sister in law posted about her and Koby in the beginning of their marriage or maybe it's because I had a picture from when we were dating 4 years ago on my timehop yesterday morning, or because last night was bid night and crazzzzzy things happen on EOX bid night - but regardless, here I am looking back to the beginning of when my Judson came into the picture.

The year 2011 wasn't a great year for me. First of all, I was fat and hadn't had a haircut in months so I constantly LOOKED like it wasn't a great year for me (so much for faking it till you make it). But overall, it was just a hard year of hard lessons I needed to learn but it sucked learning them. Therefore I declared 2012 THE YEAR OF ME. I lost some weight, got a cute haircut and some new clothes, and I was ready to finish my junior year of college and start my senior year with a bang! So, since it was THE YEAR OF ME I decided to journal things that happened everyday because everyday was going to be GREAT. Now journaling a sentence or two about what happened that day either makes me really lame or a real genius because now I have this awesome keepsake from a really special time in my life. SO since I journaled I will be cross referencing that with my actual memory. This is my favorite story EVER so sit back and prepare yourself.

Here's where it all started. Junior year of college ended and I had kind of come to terms with the fact I'm not going to meet my future husband at ACU. I talked to God and came to an agreement that it was okay and I needed to stop forcing it to happen. So I ended my junior year with this mindset. The next day pretty much all of ACU went out to a place called Guitars which is basically a bar with lots of country dancing and then to a Josh Abbott concert down the road at another place. Judson was kind of just following me around when we were at Guitars. Whatever group of people I was standing with talking to he just popped up in there. He asked me to dance a couple of times and of course I did. I had known Judson for a couple of years we had classes together and studied together before so he wasn't a stranger to me, but I was like dude what are you doing? I even asked one of our good mutual friends "Why is Judson following me around all night?" (who later I found out he texted this friend the night before and said "You need to help get Elizabeth and I together, she's hot" ROMANTIC)

After that night he was texting me a lot the next day which was graduation day. We both had roommates graduating and we would talk about that. I also learned this day that we actually lived down the street from each other in our college houses. WHO KNEW?! So after Farren's graduation party at our house he and some mutual friends came and picked me up to go to his house for his roommates graduation party, but it was basically all stupid college boys and I was not impressed. So I said something along the lines of "I think I'm just going to walk back home" and clearly disappointed this didn't turn out how he wanted it to, he said "I'll walk you! You don't need to walk alone down the street to your house" I kept on insisting I would be fine but NO this chivalry would not DIE! So he walked me home and we sat outside on the porch swing and talked for a while. Then we decided to walk over to ACU which was like 50 ft away from my house and walk around the Lunsford trail. We talked and talked - nothing flirting or romantic - I was NOT interested in that nor with this crazy, long haired, college boy. In fact I kind of told him that we both suck at relationships because we force things to be there that isn't there (talking about our pasts). So, for me, sparks weren't flying yet. But we continued to walk and talk every night around ACU for the next couple of days.
 Then one night he asked me to walk and I said sorry I can't I have to study for a test tomorrow in summer school and he said something along the lines of, "Well you know, I'm going to be a teacher too so I'm really good at helping people study." HA! So he came over and literally I just made him quiz me with my flash cards - poor guy. After studying for probably an hour and a half or so I gave in and we went on our daily evening walk around ACU. BUT I BROUGHT MY FLASH CARDS. See, I stick to my guns.

On this day he invited me to trespass to an apartment complex pool and swim with a bunch of his guy friends - so of course I forced my friend HP to go with me! I wasn't doing that alone!! I think at this point I started being more drawn to the idea of having a crush on him because I straightened my hair before I went to the pool... and he DUNKED me under water. UGH! Also, the song by Eric Church starting playing "I love your love the most" and he was kind of singing it so I said COMPLETELY JOKING "Is this song about me?" thinking he would laugh and be like NO YOU HILARIOUS PERSON! but instead he said "Not yet." and winked at me. Um.. yeah. I had a crush now. Dang it.
We went on a walk that night like we had every night for a week and this time while I was talking he just reached over and grabbed my hand. AHWIWTYOWIYRUSEHJ!!!!! Oh my gosh. I felt like a junior high girl at the movies all over again! HE HELD MY HAND! AND KEPT HOLDING IT. in my head I kept trying to convince myself "it's fine. friends hold hands. this doesn't mean anything. oh my gosh he's cute. NO. he's not! he's my friend. my good friend. AHHH!!!" So he walked me back home STILL HOLDING MY HAND and we side hugged goodnight and I ran up the stairs to my room as giddy as could be! He also really liked this night because he put this in the notes of his phone after our walk

The next day he texted me in the morning and said "Good morning pretty girl" WHAT!? Now my good friend is calling me PRETTY GIRL!!??! But I like it.. so.. okay. He can call me that. I GUESS. I went about my day business as usual and then he CALLED me, not texted where I could have done a better job of denying him, and he said "Can I take you on a date today? Like in 15 minutes? I'll walk to your house and pick you up. You just need to wear something comfortable, I'm not going to take you on your typical first date." My heart was POUNDING and I said, um.. Sure! Okay. I'll see you in 15 minutes.

I wore Nike shorts, a T-Shirt, and Chacos on that first date and he showed up wearing pretty much the same thing except a boy version of Nike shorts. hehehe. He had on a backpack and said "Alright, are you ready? We're going on a hike!" So off we went to "hike" the backwoods behind one of ACU's dorms. Oh, and he HELD MY HAND while we were walking. There is a tree house back there and we climbed to the top and he had water for us to drink because it was summer in Abilene and I'm sweating like a pig on this "first date". He also brought a sharpie for us to write on the tree house our names.
We sat up there and talked like we had for 100+ hours already lately. I would be talking and looking at him and he would start shaking his head and I would say "WHAT?" and he said "I'm not going to kiss you on our first date. I'm not going to be THAT guy." And I would just completely blow off that he just said anything about kissing me and kept on talking. That same scenario happened 3 or 4 times during that talk. We finally climbed down and started heading home, holding hands and all... we were on this really pretty, tree covered path and he stopped me and looked at me for what felt like 30 minutes without saying anything and then he leaned in to kiss me!!! And I? Well.. I turned my head away hahaha. But he made it happen anyways! And there it was - we had our first kiss. And I think both of us knew that we would never kiss anyone else again for the rest of our lives after it happened but we wouldn't dare say that to each other.

Eventually we took some engagement pictures at that special spot.
Now I get to kiss him anytime I want. :)

Well this beginning story is far from being over, we did NOT just hit the ground running being boyfriend and girlfriend after this moment. To be continued...