Wednesday, December 31, 2008

22 Christmases In My Life...This One's THE Best Yet!

In my 22 years of life, there have been many many memorable Christmases!

Memories like:
  • The times we drove from Texas to Missouri every other year to be with family. As kids we packed the suburban full of toy and coloring books to keep us busy. Sometimes we would lay all the seats down and lay blankets out like we were camping out!
  • The times something went wrong in the kitchen....burning things, forgetting to even make certain items, the year mom was so sick Dad had to do it ALL!
  • The other time mom was so sick after surgery that we just had Christmas with our immediate family in our PJ's and having Missouri family join us a day or two later.
  • The times Grandma Ellie complained that her stuffing just wasn't as good as it normally is, but really it tasted better to me every year!
  • The Christmases without certain family members due to deaths and remembering to count our blessings because of it.
  • Adding new babies and husbands through the years.
  • Getting a kick out of the funny things kids say and do. Or getting annoyed by the things kids say and do.
  • Decorating the house up and down to look like the North Pole.
  • Playing board games after supper and gifts!
  • Mom giving her mom a mink coat she won on stage with Mary Kay and seeing her face! So many memorable gifts given over the years that were so special to us. Mine in particular, a new car!
  • Me coining the phrase when I was about 6, "IT'S JUST WHAT I WANTED!!" when opening EVERY gift and meaning it with all my heart!
  • Lauren eating a Macadamia Nut cookie on Christmas Eve not knowing she was allergic to it. She woke up the next morning with her eyes swollen shut and her face as round as a balloon! Every picture of her she held her gift in front of her face. :-( Poor Lauren.
  • Shelley using a roll of tape per gift and everyone making sure they told her she used too much! Love ya Shell!
  • Dave being pissed at how messy the house was after opening gifts.
I could go on and on!!

But this year, adding another memory to all the above is something so special that I'll always remember. Looking back at the list and reading about adding people to our family excites me. It excites me because I've always looked forward to being the one responsible for adding on. Whether that being a husband or a child. This Christmas I excitedly added a fiancé to our family Christmas, and next Christmas, I so proudly will be adding a husband!

Here's the story!

We were spending Christmas Eve with Josh's immediate family and Grandma Nonnie in Shawnee, OK, opening up gifts and hanging out. I opened up a beautiful Willow Tree from Josh that was the "Sign of Love". A sweet figurine of a girl with her arms crossed in front of her in the sign of love. Then he said, the rest of your present is out there (pointing to one of the closed doors of the room). I said, "Well can't you just bring it in here?" That was a BIG no, so I got up and walked to the door. When he opened it I saw white yarn on the ground. He told me I had to follow it until it ended. We walked through the hallway and towards the front door. In his goofy voice he said, "Well lookie there, it goes outside!" So we walked, and walked, and walked! His parent's house is on Oklahoma Baptist University's campus and is across the street from the chapel...about 400 yards (we know that because the ball of yarn was almost used all up! haha).

I followed the yarn across the street, into the chapel (when I realized it went into the chapel, I thought maybe this was IT, but I still wasn't would be just like Josh to just be creative in how he gave me his gift!), and up the chapel stairs to see that it ended under the Christmas tree. He pulled the box out and opened up an EMPTY box! hehe Since he so persistently told me we WEREN'T getting engaged for the many weeks leading up to Christmas, I looked at the box still thinking, this could be an earring box!! But then he pulled my GORGEOUS ring out of his pocket and made the sweetest proposal! We both cried, I said yes, and the rest is history!
We walked out of the chapel to see that his brother Ryan was waiting to take our picture.

Then the security guard pulled in asking who we were, how we got in, what we were doing, etc. Once he found out Josh was the President's son and that we just got engaged, he offered to take us up into the steeple of the chapel!! Only three people at OBU have those keys, so it was pretty sweet!! It's the highest point in Shawnee and we could see everything! We walked back picking up yarn all the way. After meeting his family back at the house we circled up for prayer and of course showed off my ring! ;-)

How proud I am to wear this ring and show it off. How proud I am of Josh overcoming obstacles the past 4 months while in the Navy. How proud I am that Josh and I have followed God's will for our relationship. How proud I am to refer to Josh as my fiancé. How proud I am of him!!

I know some of you might be wondering when the wedding is! Well, due to his Navy schedule, we're not 100% sure (and may not be 100% sure until about a month or two before)! AH! I'll definitely keep you updated!


Shelley said...


Second...The year Lauren's face swelled, do you remember that was the year Jason and I got married? She was so afraid that she would still look swollen 3 days later at the wedding. She wasn't though. Whew!

Third...Once again, CONGRATULATIONS!!! I am so excited for you and Josh! It's YOUR year my dear! Enjoy every single second of it!

Brian and Erika Opperman said...

Congrats, sweet girl!!!


Alana said...

Again, I say, "Congratulations!" Truly happy for you!

Heather C said...

What a great way to propose! I can see many happy and FUN years in your future... and I don't even know you! :) God bless... your new year and your marriage. :)

michelle said...

Congratulations to both of you! I'm so excited and happy for this new chapter in your life! I'm sending a big hug your way! :)

Anonymous said...

Congratulations possible future bride of 417studios! You have a very sweet story! I'm looking forward to talking with you tomorrow at 2:45!!

Janelle said...

I still don't know how this info slipped me by. Anyway...CONGRATS!! How amazing and what a creative proposal. I love a good romance!

I think I am available May 2nd for your matron of honorness. hehe.