3 years ago today. ♥
3 years ago today. ♥
Ten years ago today, I waited nervously in my parents’ kitchen as you pulled up outside in your green Acura Integra. You got out of the car and you had gotten a haircut and weren’t wearing those awful tennis shoes you wouldn’t take off all through first quarter. You walked up to the door, all tall, cool and confident. You were funny and personable with my parents, and then we headed out for the day. I walked next to you at Santana Row and my hand accidentally brushed yours — you jokingly said, “Jeez, fine you can hold my hand!” and reached out and grabbed mine. And that was it — I was hooked. Later that day you tickled me until I shrieked and then kissed me. I thought my heart would burst I was so full and smitten with you.
A few months later, we were back in the Bay Area for Spring Break and you invited me to spend the day with you in San Francisco. We met at your parents’ house and headed to BART (my very first time riding it). You bought my ticket and informed me of the all-important rules like “stand on the right, walk on the left” as we made our way up to the platform. We boarded the train and sat down next to each other in two of the four seats that face each other. A few stops in, two kids boarded — one sat across from me, the other across the aisle. As the train moved forward, the kid across the aisle started taunting the younger kid sitting across from me. The younger one remained silent, but the kid across the aisle was relentless. At one point, the older kid got agitated that the younger one wasn’t reacting, and stood up, threatening to hit the boy. You stood up, put your hand on the older kid’s shoulder, looked him square in the eye and said, “Sit down.” The kid sneered at you, “Don’t worry about it, man.” But you stayed right where you were and said again, “Sit. Down.” The bully sat down and exited the train shortly after. The younger kid stayed on and started crying quietly. You said, “Hey, was that your stop? It’s ok if it was, you just have to get on a train going the other way.” He mumbled that his stop was next, and exited the train when it came up.
I remember that BART ride so clearly because as soon as you stood up and told that kid to sit down I knew — I knew I loved you. It was so clear in that moment, and I felt it so surely and squarely. I had been falling for you for months, but in those few seconds it happened all at once, like falling off a cliff, knowing so certainly that you were it for me.
Over these last ten years together, that feeling hasn’t changed. Even through the more tumultuous parts of our twenties, the days/months where we were still working on “figuring it out,” and even through the days where my pregnancy hormones get the best of me and I feel overwhelmed and like everything is an unsolved problem, I’ve still always known — you’re the one.
You’re the first person I want to talk to when I’m feeling down, the first person I want to work through a problem with, the first person I want to retell a funny story to, and the only person I want to lay next to at night and wake up with in the morning.
You’re my person.
There’s a lot that has happened over the past ten years. Sometimes it feels entirely inconceivable that we’ve been together so long (a third of my whole life!) But then, it also feels like I can’t remember my life without you. Despite the fact that dating someone throughout the entirety of your twenties comes with a bit of baggage (people are really stupid when they’re 23, 24, etc. It’s like science or something.) — bad decisions were made, we were immature, you acted out, I would withdraw and then lash out; despite that, there’s also something pretty amazing about the fact that we grew up together. All those big life moments — we were both there.
I was the first person to hear that you’d gotten an internship at PwC (heck, I was there listening when you got the phone call with the offer). You knew every law school I got accepted to. I went with you to buy your very first suit (when the salesman asked, “How does he look?” my reply was, “Like a grown-up.” We were 21 and 22 at the time.) We got to graduate from college together. You were there to pep-talk me through my first semester of law school (God, it was so hard). I talked you down when working in the “real world” was just… A LOT. You held my hand as I got my BAR results. I screamed and jumped up and down every single time you informed me that you’d passed yet another part of the CPA exam. You were there when my dad got sick (really sick). I was there when you found out your grandpa had passed. You were there when mine went not long after.
I have to say, the past ten years haven’t been easy, but they’ve been the best ten years of my life by far. I can’t wait to share so many more decades with you. And there’s certainly no one else I would want to start a family with, and no one else I’d be prouder to call my husband and my kids’ dad. (Kids — plural! Getting a little ahead of myself here.)
You’re my favorite person in the whole-wide world, and I can’t wait to tackle parenthood and another 7+ decades with you. Happy Anniversary, Kace. I sure do love you.
As much as I hate the word “babymoon” (like, what does that even mean?) I’m totally not against the idea of a babymoon (which, in case you’re not familiar, is a little trip you take with your spouse before the tiny babe comes and upends your whole life. — It’s a positive upending, just to be clear.)
We’ve decided to jump on the bandwagon and take a little trip to New Orleans before I’m officially on the no-fly list. KC and I had some money to Southwest, courtesy of giving up our seats on one of our flights over Memorial Day weekend (we made almost $900!) which was set to expire basically on my due date. Plus, we have a credit card which earns us United miles (it’s amazing — we’ve both flown to Europe twice in the last 2 years alone just on miles!) We figured we’re a ways away from heading back overseas now that I’m incubating a tiny human, so we opted to use our points to book our hotel stay in NOLA. Overall, it’s turning out to be quite the affordable adventure, which is awesome because now we can spend all our hard-earned money on important things like beignets, fancy dinners, and beignets. Even though I can’t really partake in the fun nightlife in NOLA, I’m really excited to have some time to just relax and soak up a new city (I’ve actually been once before, but it was a very short trip for a work conference, so I didn’t really get to experience much of the city).
KC and I have made traveling a priority in our life together. I caught the travel bug the first time I headed to Europe in 2003 (I’ve been overseas 6 times in the last 11 years as a result) and worked hard to convince KC to scrimp and save up for a big trip that we finally took together in late 2012. Since that 2012 trip, KC has been fully on board with my travel addiction, and is always quick to support the argument of, “That isn’t that expensive for a flight/hotel/trip/whatever,” or “We’ve got this many miles on our card — where are we going and when?”
A few things we’ve learned over the years are to take advantage of vacation time and PTO through work. While many people let their days build and build and only take a few hours here and there for sick days, appointments, etc., we opt to take a chunk of time at least once every year or two and get away. We also make sure to be flexible in the dates and months we travel (did you know it’s cheapest to fly in the middle of the week?), so we’ll often take two weeks for Europe going Tuesday-Tuesday or Wednesday-Wednesday. And the two times we’ve gone to Europe have been during the off-season in November and May. (PS: Christmastime in Europe is magical. I can’t wait to do it again someday.)
We’re also pretty savvy in our spending, in the name of future travel. When I was traveling a lot for work, I decided to sign up for a United credit card to take advantage of all the awards miles I was racking up. While the card does have a yearly fee (I think it’s $50 or $100), we use the card for almost all of our regular purchases, and have racked up enough miles for two round-trip tickets to Europe each year (which is worth wayyyy more than the $100 fee to us!) And even though we’re not using our miles to head off on a European vacation in 2015, we got 5 nights at a 4-star hotel in downtown New Orleans for free with our points. Not bad considering we just jetted off to Amsterdam/Scotland/Ireland in May.
Do you make travel a priority? What are the tips and tricks you’ve picked up over the years?
And I’d love to hear if you took a babymoon — was the getaway nice before your whole life changed? I’m kind of freaking out a little. (Just a little.) 😉
We polished off a few more dates over last week and last weekend. We completed date 6 by heading to The Star for dinner on Wednesday night. It was the eve of the giant storm, so we sat by the window in the restaurant and waited for mother nature to unleash her fury while dining on meatballs, salad, and pesto chicken pizza. I’m beginning to feel the little twinge of “missing out” on the adult beverages of the season (I have taken to smelling anything KC drinks these days), but the housemade lemonade at The Star almost made me forget about the fact that I can’t imbibe like everyone else this season.
Date 7 was, I have to say, pretty special. On Saturday night we went out for a fancy meal at Michel Bistro with KC’s siblings and their significant others (we opted to all go out to dinner together in lieu of getting each other gifts this year). That wasn’t really part of the date though — that came after dinner, when rather than driving straight home, KC drove me through Piedmont (where the rich people live) so we could see all the Christmas lights. There were some pretty awesome displays, but there were also a lot of houses lacking in Christmas cheer. (Um, what’s the point in having a bunch of money if you’re not going to spend it on amazing Christmas lights? Clearly we have different values.) The best display by far was this giant house that had a glassed-in sunroom visible from the street. They had strung lights down the beams between the glass panels and had a giant Christmas tree right in the middle — so festive! And of course, I love that KC knows me well enough to know that I’ll get kid-on-Christmas excited over just driving around and looking and lights. (I love him. Just wait for the mushy post coming up next week on our 10 year anniversary!)
Our 8th date happened on Sunday night. We had spent the day at a family Christmas party, and I was pretty tired by the time we got home (and had zero interest in cooking dinner). We decided to head out to Boot and Shoe Service for dinner, which was delicious (as usual). We shared ricotta and toast, a salad of arugula, frisee, almonds and feta, the classic margherita pizza (my go-to) and a linzertorte for dessert. They had some delicious-looking cocktails on the menu, which I was a little bummed I couldn’t partake in, but the housemade ginger-mint soda was a nice second place.
It’s crazy that Christmas is next week already (I guess I should probably get my shopping done…) Good thing we’ve only got 4 dates to go!
We’re on a roll with the 12 dates of Christmas over here — I dare say we might even exceed 12 this year! (And good thing too, as I suspect our date nights are going to be a little fewer and farther between once the bambino arrives next year.)
We started off strong by hitting up Camino on Friday night for dinner. Camino is one of my favorite restaurants, and it happens to be just blocks away from our place, which is a nice bonus. I had been bugging KC to go to Camino for awhile, since it’s now crab season. Camino always does crab in the fireplace during this time of year and it’s sooo delicious. KC and I went to Camino for the first time for our 6 year anniversary (almost 4 years ago now!) and I had the crab — I’ve been hooked ever since. Their cocktails are amazing too, but sadly I wasn’t able to partake this time around. 😉
We had a nice long meal — sharing some cheese and bread, a salad of bitter lettuce, puntarelle, and lentils, I had the crab with farro, KC got quail, and we shared persimmon pudding and some almond/chocolate cookies for dessert. It was perfect.
We talked about the baby (how it’s weird to be pregnant — in a good way), plans for the future, our upcoming anniversary, and all other sorts of things. It was so nice to get away and connect, and it really reminded me that we will definitely need to make an effort to find time for just the two of us once the baby comes.
Our second date was on Saturday night, which was KC’s office’s annual holiday party. It’s a huge event — everyone gets dressed up and the company goes all out, with multiple open bars and food stations. Luckily, an H&M dress I’ve had for a couple years still zips over my bump, so I was able to get all dolled up for the evening (maternity tights and all). The party was fun — a bit of a whirlwind. And dang my legs were tired by the end — pregnancy + heels is not a joke.
Our third date was going out for brunch on Sunday morning. After teaching Saturday morning and then attending two (!) holiday parties that same day, I was pretty tired for most of Sunday. KC and I slept in and then rolled out of bed and made our way back to Camino for brunch. I could barely function, being so tired from the day before, but it was a nice way to spend the morning nonetheless.
We capped off Sunday night by having dinner at home and watching The Family Stone together. I made a big pot of soup and whipped up some Christmas candy for a work event. Honestly, there’s not much else I enjoy more than just hanging out at home with KC, especially during the holidays. It feels so nice to just slooow down a little and take some time together.
I hope you all are enjoying the holiday season. Only 7 dates left! Merry merry.