Monday, December 14, 2009

14 yards of bias tape and 3 yards of rick rack later...

This weekend I was in a sewing frenzy. I promised Nathan I would get my first quilt I made last year hand quilted before he came home and seeing as how I don't know when that's going to be and will only have very short notice before hand, I figured I better get crackin'. On Saturday night I stayed up until 12:57 am hand quilting and I finally finished it! The quilt top has been on my blog before but now it's all quilted and ready for snuggling. Yesterday I got home from church at around 2 and then spent the entire day, once again until midnight, sewing. This little apron is my nieces Christmas present, and since I'm pretty sure no one in that family reads my blog, I thought I'd post pictures of it. It turned out pretty cute, if you ignore some of the little oopsies, but took a lot of patience. Hopefully Gracie will enjoy it and be sure to cover it with lots of brownie batter and cookie dough. I am, however, proud to say that I am officially finished with all my Christmas shopping/sewing and finished it all last night. HOORAY!
PS. Of course I had to add pics of the pretty flowers Nathan sent me and and action shot of Butters.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

California, Cute Puppy, Christmas Tree and Cold Snow

The past couple weeks have been full of fun! We (Butters and I) went home for Thanksgiving, had a great time, and then my mom came up and spent the last week with me up here in WA. In that time we ate really great turkey, celebrated my birthday (twice), got and decorated a Christmas tree and had our first snow of the season and Butters' first snow ever. Here are the pics!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

I'm Thankful For Butters

i'm writing this entry sitting on the living room floor, leaning to my right side in order to type on my laptop because my 55 pound little big guy is sleeping on my lap. I know there are so many things I could write about that I'm thankful for, like my amazing husband, my family and my friends, but I would like to focus on Butters today. Nathan has now been gone for over a month and I'm doing pretty well. Sure, I miss him like crazy, but I'm overall pretty content. While a lot of that has to do with keeping busy with quite a bit of retail therapy, the prize for keeping me happy while Nathan is gone definitely goes to Butters. He is such an amazingly sweet little dog and always seems to know what I need. No matter how crappy I feel he can always bring a smile to my face. Whether it's the way he jumps straight up into the air when I get home and then runs as fast as he can into the house to wait for me to play, or the way he sits in the couch nook on the floor and rests his arms and head on the couch, he makes me happy. I honestly don't know what I'd do without him. He's always up for as many hugs as I want to give him and is always more than willing to give me kisses, whether I want them or not. I'm just so happy for the addition he is to our family, for the wonderful times we've already had and for the many we'll have in the future. He's the best little guy in the world and I love him!

Friday, November 20, 2009

Life Update

Well, it has been quite a while since I've added anything to my blog so I decided to compose one of those grand sweep blog entries that discuss the bulk of what is going on in my life in a fairly brief manner. Let's begin. As many of you know that read my blog, if anyone actually reads my blog, Nathan is under water and has been for about a month. It's been tough, but honestly it isn't as bad as I'd feared and we both seem to be getting along pretty well! Normally while on patrol they don't get a chance to call, even when they pull into Hawaii for supplies, but the patrol Nathan is on had some special circumstances and most people were allowed to text their loved ones from Hawaii and some even got to call! Nathan was one such lucky individual who received permission to give me a call and it was wonderful! We were able to talk for nearly 30 minutes!!! Let me emphasize that wives never get phone calls from husbands on boomers (the type of sub Nathan is on), and even in this situation where several were allowed to phone home, most only got 5 minutes. Nathan must be on someone's good side. Along with the phone call and copious texting, they were able to send out paper mail which I just received! Nathan wrote me 34 page letter that he has worked on a bit every day since they've been gone. It covered a variety of topics from the super romantic, to jackass crewmembers, from the depressing to the down right absurd. Needless to say, there was nothing quite like my evening of huddling under a blanket while reading Nathan's letter and listening to Butters chew on his disgusting bone.
Butters is doing great, by the way. He's around 55lbs, super fit, and super ridiculous! He wakes me up every morning by scratching, which jingles his collar and then trotting over to my side of the bed and sticking his wet nose in my face. It's pretty endearing, at least it is when it's time for me to get up as well. He's definitely been a good companion. I think that maybe I'll try and get him to go out on Nathan's next patrol so he can be their sub dog and keep everyone company. That's a thing, right? A couple of days ago I bought Butters an amazing collar. If you can't tell in the pictures, it's argyle with skull and crossbones. The name of the design is Arrrrrgyle. He's being so good and I even let him have a super gross bone on the carpet (placed on a towel of course) and he amazingly stayed on the towel, well, at least for the most part.
As for things I've been doing, I'll start by what I haven't been doing, and that's laundry. I don't know why, but that is the one chore since Nathan has been gone that I absolutely hate doing! Once I get home from work laundry seems like the absolute most draining thing to do. Once I throw a load in, it's usually another couple of days before I fold it and then another day or so before I put it away. It's completely pathetic! Fortunately, the rest of my household chores haven't fallen by the wayside nearly as badly and the house still looks okay. Phew!
One thing I have been doing is organizing my sewing room. I'd call it a craft room, but I'm pretty sure my scrapbooking stuff is going to stay in its crate forever. Anyway, I folded all my fabric up, organized it in baskets, organized my patterns, etc, and it's finally coming together! I also finished the quilt top I've been working on and now just have to pony up and buy batting and backing. Well enough about sewing.
I'm spending quite a bit of time with some of the ladies on the Nevada and am loving it. We really lucked out with the group of people on Nathan's boat! Spending time with the ladies generally means spending more money than I should by going out to dinner, shows and shopping, but hey, my husband is under water! Whatever gets me through the day, right?
As for Washington, I really love it. The past couple weeks have been rough due to the fact that we've had half a day of sunshine during that span, but those glimpses of sun really do make up for how dreary it is in the rain.
I'm still planning on beginning a teaching program most likely in January or February, but am steering more toward a Montessori program which I'm really excited about. I finally feel like I've found the right fit for school and I am at peace over the whole education conundrum for the first time since I began searching for the right program.
To summarize, life is good. Of course it's difficult to not have my favorite person and love of my life by my side, but I know we'll be able to start right where we left off when he gets back and the distance helps us grow stronger. The rest of my life is going really well! I have great friends, a wonderful job and I think I finally know where I want to go next with my life, education and career wise. What more could I ask for?

Now for some pictures.
The following Pictures are in a pretty random order but I'm too lazy to rearrange them.

My 34 page letter from Nathan.

A sampling of the post its with sweet little notes hidden all over the house from Nathan, including on about 6 out of 12 cans of diet pepsi in a box that he opened and sneakily resealed.

My beautiful washer and dryer that are being utilized from the looks of it by a hobo

Flowers I received last week from Nathan

A close up of Butters' Arrrrrgyle collar. Pretty snazzy, right?

Butters being an idiot.

A sampling of my organized fabric.

And finally, my quilt top.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Curtains, Pillows, Kitchen and a New Quilt

Moving in has been fun and busy! We're finally to the point with no boxes and most everything in its place. Right now what we have to work on is the style. We've painted the whole lower level and it looks great! Turns out, Nathan is really good at putting those final touches on the painting so it turns out well. Here are a few of the things I've been working on for the house, a picture of the kitchen and my newest quilt beginning.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Monday, June 29, 2009

It's Hot up in Here!

The last few days have been miserably hot! It's even been hard on the dogs. I put Butters outside for about half an hour the on Saturday and heard him yelping at the door. I left him out because there was plenty of shade and water, but he was so persistent that I finally decided to bring him inside. Nathan and I did what we call Puppy chat, which is ichat with Butters, since he hasn't met him in person, and the whole time Butters was panting like crazy. Even when he fell asleep about 10 minutes later he was panting in his sleep. Poor little guy. I guess you have to be a little careful with puppies in the heat. Needless to say, we've all been trying to find ways to keep cool, but it seems like Butters has got it all figured out.

Even Ulee, who doesn't like being inside with the puppy, came inside to beat the heat.

Butters started by trying out the air conditioning vents.

Pretty Successful!

But finally settled on the cool marble hearth.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

The first few days

Having Butters as an addition to our family has been nothing but fun. He is the sweetest little guy anyone could ever meet! He's energetic, cuddly, playful and even brave. Ulee hasn't completely warmed up to Butters and little guy has been barked at and snapped at several times. Butters, however, remains unfazed by any of Ulee's grumpiness and continues to follow him everywhere and try and get him to play. As with any baby thing, the lack of sleep is a little challenging but he's so sweet I don't even care that I have to get up with him every two to three hours. On a side note, he is doing incredibly well as far as housebreaking! He still cries a little at night, but barely any and he goes straight out to the grass when he has to get it done. I'm so proud of that little guy and so happy Nathan and I now have him in our family. I know he's always going to be a great companion!

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Thursday, June 18, 2009


Today mom and I picked up the newest member of Nathan and my family, Butters! He's a six and a half week old yellow lab. Nathan and I have wanted a dog since before we were married and the time has finally come! We have orders (Washington State, hooray!) and that means a somewhat permanent location. Nathan will be in sub school for the next two months in CT while I stay in CA with my parents. Deciding it would ease the pain of separation and that Santa Rosa would be a good place to train a puppy, we decided to get one today. We found the ad for his litter online and as luck would have it, today was the day the puppies were ready,today is my first day without Nathan, and today is the day I was driving back from LA which drive crossed the path of where the puppies were from, Modesto. All in all, it was pretty perfect.
Once we got to the puppies, it was pretty obvious which one was mean for Nathan and me. I stepped into the kennel, and butters looked at me from the corner, peed and then climbed on my lap and started kissing my face. It was love at first sight. Since then he's been nothing but the sweetest. After trying to chew everything he shouldn't in the car he fell asleep on the floor, then he woke up and played on my lap where he once again fell asleep for the rest of the 2 and 1/2 hour drive from Modesto to Santa Rosa. Once at home he quickly started exploring. He was particularly fond of an overgrown rosemary bush outside the garage, both to climb in and to eat. Whenever he got scared, like when our 110 lb. yellow lab Ulee met him or when his metal name tag clinked his water bowl, he backed as fast as he could all the way under my car and stayed until he could see Dad or me to whom he quickly ran. He even went to sleep in his crate without any far. I'm so excited to have Butters in our life and am especially excited for Nathan to meet him!

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Happy Anniversary to Us!

Today is our second anniversary! It's wonderful to think that we've been married for two whole years. In some ways our wedding seems like yesterday, but when I think back on everything that has happened in the past two years it seems crazy that it's only been two years. I'm just so thankful that we're still happy and our love is still strong. Sorry to gush a little bit, but I love Nathan so much and every day he surprises me with how amazingly sweet, smart and handsome he is. I'm also so thankful that he's willing to put up with me no matter how many Amanda meltdowns I might have and no matter what trials we might face. After two years of marriage I'm looking forward to many happy anniversary's to come. I love you Sweetheart!
For our anniversary we went to Disneyland yesterday and will be going two more days next week and then tonight we went to a fun and more importantly, a delicious restaurant called the Orange County Mining Co. While fancy restaurants with dress codes and dance floors are fun, we're definitely more into the laid back with great food scene which is exactly what this was. Now we're back at the hotel and are going to relax for a while and maybe hit the hot tub later, who knows? Anyway, here are some pics of our anniversary dinner tonight, Disneyland yesterday, and a picture of my two favorite guys.

My three sister in laws and a super scared nephew on big thunder mountain

The whole Voelker clan

It's hard to tell from the picture the extent of my soaking, but this is us after a head to toe drenching from splash mountain

Ulee and Nathan