Christmas '08


This was a Christmas of firsts; my first one as a wife, not a student, the proud owner of a crazy puppy, and I was actually able to contribute to the festivities with food! I mean, I'm sure I could have done that before, but it's easier when you're trying to finish up finals and whatnot. The Saturday before Christmas, Andrew and I went up to Wilkesboro to spend time with my grandparents and my mom's side of the family. It was great to see some family that I hadn't seen since our wedding. We ate some great food, opened presents and just spent some time together. Then on Christmas eve, we did some "last minute shopping" (for Sam) and just relaxed most of the day. We got ready and went to church at 4 for a beautiful Christmas service. For some reason, I was really emotional and could hardly make it through most of it without tears in my eyes. It was amazing how much you could feel the power of God that night. The longer we were there, the more peace I felt wash over me. One great thing about being older, is understanding the true meaning of Christmas and knowing just how powerful that is. After the church, we drove home, gathered the things we needed for his parents house (and Sam) and headed over there. That night was spent watching the kids open up all of their presents and eating some yummy food and just enjoying each others company.
Andrew's parents tree (and all the presents!)
My crazy haired niece and I!Hubby and I on Christmas eve (the cropped one wasn't working)

Andrew and I also got a few presents as did Sam. After we left, we opened up the presents from each other! That was exciting being able to sit in our apartment and do that (it's the little things). I believe that both of us did an excellent job with our selections. Christmas morning we drove back up to my grandparents and saw more family and ate more food. That was pretty much the trend of this Christmas season--eating.

Mom, Andrew and I on Christmas day

Overall, I would have to say that this was a pretty great Christmas. I loved my first one as a wife and having a husband. But the little changes were hard; not going to my parents on Christmas day and missing out on the little things that I was so used to doing over the years. However, I was okay with the new things that happened this year. I hope everyone had a merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas Eve!!!


I started getting really, really excited yesterday knowing that Christmas was just a mater of hours away. And then I started thinking about how funny it is how when you're little, pretty much from November 1st on is centered around Santa and exactly what presents you were getting. Now, I get excited about funny things like music, smells, food (especially the food) and other little traditions. I love knowing that tonight I will be attending the Christmas eve service with my husband for the first time. Celebrating our first Christmas together is a big deal for me and I'm excited for the ones to come. Another thing that used to not be such a big thing was being with family, whereas now, that is pretty much what our weeks are centered around. For example, tonight after church we'll be going to his parents for food, games and presents and tomorrow morning we'll go to my grandma's for a little bit. I love knowing that we have the opportunities to spend quality time with our families and enjoying their company during this wonderful season! AND another great part about this Christmas is celebrating with our puppy who was getting a little impatient with me last night as I tried to get her picture. Here is one example:She is still so wonderful! Hope everyone has a very merry Christmas eve!!!!



Describes my life these past few weeks. Between work, Christmas shopping and traveling, I am ready to sleep for about a week straight! Two weekends ago, Andrew and I went to Boone for the App playoff game, and needless to say, the outcome was not what we had hoped. But despite that, we had a great time seeing friends and going to Cornerstone Summit that Sunday morning (by far the best part). It made me realize just how much that church and town influenced both mine and Andrew's lives.
Then, not even a week later, Andrew and I left to visit the Briley's up in Baltimore. It was so great to go up there and see where they've lived and what they've been a part of for the past year. Andrew and I left Friday morning at 5a.m. and met Steffi and (her) Andrew in a town that's between Washington D.C. and Baltimore. From there we took the metro (i love saying that) to D.C. for the afternoon.

Fresh off the metro and into the cold!
Love this picture!
We were in D.C. long enough to do a little sight-seeing and go to the Holocaust Museum and one of the Smithsonian's. After that, we hopped back on the metro, got our cars and went to dinner at Cheesecake Factory (my favorite!). And that pretty much sums up Friday because after all was said and done, we were all exhausted! Saturday was spent eating yummy food, walking around the Harbor and finding pretty much the most interesting and amusing place in Baltimore to watch the Carolina basketball game.

Yes, that's Michael Phelps. He won some medals
Two greats under one roof!At Looney's for the game/best Santa's EVER!

Another great point of Saturday night is that Steffi and Andrew (B) were on the news! A cameraman was asking people to give their input for the Baltimore/Pittsburgh game (worst calls EVER) and they chose the the Briley's to be one of the people they showed during the 11 o'clock news! It was hilarious and made for the best ending of the night! Sunday, we went to church, and afterward went to the ESPNZone to watch the Raven's game and let me tell you, people up there are intense about their team. We left around halftime and finished watching at in the safety of the Briley home. Once the game was over, Steffi and I went and got ice cream and Wall-E from the Blockbuster. It was such a good movie! I highly reccomend it. Monday (the sad last day) we were able to visit Hopkins and see where Steffi spends the majority of her life.
So beautiful!

After our short tour (Steffi is a great guide) we went to Fells Pointe, which is a super cute area on the water with a ton of great stores. We (the girls) probably could've spent hours walking and shopping, but we decided to spare the boys. But it was a beautiful place!
We ate dinner at this amazing restaurant called "Mama's on the Half Shell"--gotta love the name--and we all probably weighed 5lbs more after we left. The food was incredible!
And unfortunately, that pretty much is all there is to tell. Andrew and I drove back to Charlotte Tuesday and the real world started back. Baltimore was amazing though and I loved being able to see 2 of my best friends for four uninterupted days! And I can't wait to do it again! Hope everyone is getting pumped for the days ahead! Yummy food and good times with family and friends!

P.S. 8 more days till Christmas!!!

no photos this weekend


So I'm in Boone...and i forgot my camera.

more to come.
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