Sunday, June 28, 2009

Well... we did it!

Well we got married! It was a fairytale come true and I have the most wonderful husband and best friend I could ever imagine!
We had a great time in Greece and Italy and now it's back to the real world of work and life's many challenges (which at the moment seem a bit overwhelming). We still don't know where we will be in the next year. For now though Brodie and I are settling into life in LaJolla for what we hope will be permanent. It's the only place that feels like home to me anymore and where we are honestly the happiest.

Round two of weddings this summer is in full swing and I think Jess's is more stressful than my own was. I think her's is taking a bigger toll on everyone than mine (for reasons I won't go into here). However, I at least now have my Brodie and the beach and Disneyland and The Grove not to far away to make my days brighter-- and of course the California sun! If I make it through the next few months without another major blow-up I'll be happy. (Somehow I find this somewhat doubtful.) But to end on a happier note: I have the absolute best husband in the world!

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Just an update

It's been a long couple of weeks for Brodie and me. We had a great time in both Nashville and Texas. However, we really would prefer to be moving back to Southern California. I would even take NorCal right now compared to the middle of TN or TX. (And I mean really northern California, like north of the Bay area or even Fresno compared to the alternatives-- hey, at least it'd still be CA.. right?)

Anyway, that's my whining and complaining for the night. All in all we did have a great time and met a number of great people. There are worse things than having to live in the Texas hill country or on the border of Kentucky and Tennessee. This is actually a lesson and reality we are being hit with on top of everything else. One of my best friends is currently deployed in Qatar through the fall and another good friend has been in Afghanistan for the past four months. Having close friends on deployment always stresses and worries me some. We don't think Brodie will be redeployed, but there's always that chance if he stays on enlisted active duty and I'd be lying if I said it doesn't freak me out some.

I'm not so secretly praying that Brodie decides to leave active duty when the army finally is willing to let him go. This was the plan all along, but things change and I suppose nothing is ever for certain. Right now he's wanting to stay in the reserves probably and taking a job working with INSCOM that would be based out of Fort Sam Houston in San Antonio. In other news Brodie was supposed to be done with his current assignment this last February and it was extended to May; well now, we're looking at August. They've yet to find a suitable replacement for Brode and I think the army dragging their feet some on purpose. We know they'd like for Brodie to resign his contract and stay enlisted, but we're really leaning the other way. At least they've been pretty flexible with time off and schedules. We are of course going to Europe in June for our honeymoon :) After we return it looks like we'll spending the summer in Kansas and Brode will be hopefully training his replacement and transitioning out of active duty-- so much for our perfect SoCal beach summer :(

Given the current state of the world and Obama's stupid plan to deal with Afghanistan and pull out of Iraq, I believe we're looking at an even bigger mess and wars. This whole scenario pretty much totally freaks me out and is why Brodie and I are anxious and increasingly ready for him to be done with his military obligations.

In other news, we will actually be going out to Breckenridge in Colorado for a mini-vacation/long weekend in a couple weeks to just relax and enjoy the very end of ski season. That's it for now. When we get back from CO we're flying out to Ari and Kevin's wedding in Georgia and then back to Seattle for a few days. After that it's home to SoCal for Pepperdine's law school graduation and then to Santa Barbara for our wedding! There's just a little over a month-- Crazy!!

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Job interviews and house shopping

I decided I very much dislike job interviews and house hunting. Well, I actually don't mind house hunting as much as the first thing. Brodie's been of course interviewing with the army at Fort Campbell and we've been in the greater Nashville area the last few days. Next Monday we're going to be back in San Antonio doing the same.

We also looked at some houses in Clarksville (an "army town" halfway between Nashville and the base). I have to say it's a nice enough area, but really not for me. I'm still hoping we end up either in La Jolla or at least what I've dubbed "middle of nowhere Texas between Austin and San Antonio". Brode and I both feel that Tennessee really isn't for us. It's too far from our families and friends and just not where we want to be in the end.

Anyway, here are the highlights from our time in Nashville:
  • Stock-Yard- It's supposed to be one of the top 10 steakhouses in the US and also home to the oldest bottle of wine known to exist in the US. Of course this claim to fame meant Brode had to check it out. We think they definitely are one of the best steakhouses and can keep their title.
  • Nashville also has some other great restaurants too that we got to check out.
  • Shopping is ok- but there is no Nordstrom or other places I frequent. There is a Tiffany's, and yes, I do have the best fiance ever! Brodie just calls it doing his part to stimulate the economy- works for me :)
  • Country music hall of fame and all the Nashville music stuff. If you're here you have to check it all out. So we did.

And now for the Texas portion update. We've had an amazing time in Texas so far and I really like it much better than Nashville. I'm hoping we end up here if it has to be anywhere other than SoCal. Interviews today went well and we looked at a few houses in San Antonio. Ideally we'd want to be somewhere between Austin and San Antonio. Whatever work I would want to do with politics would be based more out of Austin of course.

I love the river walk in San Antonio. Mix great shopping and restaurants with a gorgeous setting and I'm as good as home. Like I said I could live here. We'll be here one more day then we're driving up to spend a couple days in Austin.

Brode and I both really like staying in hotels that are both luxurious but not too big and more unique than your average Hyatt or Hilton. We also look for ones that aren't in the center of the crazy downtown districts. Brodie is also somewhat obsessed with antiques and unique furniture. Both hotel's we're staying at meet our requirements for decor with an extensive collection of unique furniture and art.

If you're ever in San Antonio and need a good place to stay we love the La Mansion del Rio. It's on the River Walk and the perfect combination of Texas style and luxury. This is my third time staying here and I love it. If you stay here try to get a room over looking the river walk-- it is so pretty :) The historic building also is part of San Antonio's story and beauty.

When we're in Austin we'll be staying at the Mansion at Judge's Hill. It's similar in style to the del Rio and is also a historic building loaded with Texas style and antiques. And yes they both used to be old mansions build in the late 19th/early 20th century. I got to stay at the Mansion during the campaign and and of course I love it. It's close the capitol and UT.

We hope you're all doing well and we are really starting to look forward to and get excited about our wedding which is a matter of weeks away!! :)

Monday, April 20, 2009

I love 24 and Jack :)

If you know me you probably know I love the show "24". Jack is like the absolute best all time hero. Well I've made Brode become almost just as addicted to 24 as I am. I made him watch all the seasons he missed :) After suffering through the last two rather mediocre seasons (which were still some of the best hours on tv!) it's nice to finally be back to a season I can get excited about.

However, I do have to say I'm disappointed with Tony going bad and what's with Chloe's PR announcement about going green?

Monday, April 13, 2009

We hope you had a great Easter!

We hope you all had a wonderful Easter weekend. I love this time of year and all it stands for. Praise be to God for all he's blessed us with and given to us! This was the first Easter Brodie and I spent together so that of course made it extra special.

We spent Easter with his parents and grandmother in La Jolla. It was the first time I got to meet his maternal grandmother. Nana Janet is such an amazing woman and I look forward to spending much more time with her! We had a wonderful weekend at the beach, church, and enjoyed Easter brunch at the Hotel Del.

Later this week Brode and I will be flying out to Nashville to interview for a job. I'm trying to resist the urge to say "stupid job" right because it's actually a really good opportunity, but I just wish it wasn't in Nashville. He'd be running tact and some training excercises, but it's more of an administrative position--- which I'm 100% fond of and it would at least keep us in the states. The alternatives were going overseas some with the army or foreign service.

For now, I've been researching Nashville and reasons to either live there or not. One of the countries 10 best steak houses is in Nashville and houses the oldest bottle of wine. I'm making Brode take me to it :) Anyway, we'll be letting you know what happens.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Less than two months

The countdown is beginning! Less than two months until Brode and I will be married. Between now and then we have lots to do. Invitations were sent out and you all should have yours by now so you know the details :)

Between now and the wedding we'll be on the road a lot actually. Brode's interviewing later this month with each potential job in San Antonio and yes, Nashville. I'm going with him to both to check out each city again. We also have a wedding for my friend Ari in May in Savannah and from there we'll be flying back to Santa Barbara to get ready for our own!

We are hoping to have a final answer on the job question by mid May about where we will be living come this fall. We will be spending part of the summer in La Jolla at least. Both jobs would start at the end of August. Which means we'll get some SoCal summertime this year at least- no where near enough though.

Monday, April 6, 2009

La Jolla, Austin, or Nashville

I really do hate moving. I think I've moved enough in the last couple years for a long time to come. Maybe it's the fact that I feel like I've spent the last few months living out of a suitcase as well. I've decided I really do hate moving and packing and all that.

Brode and I still haven't decided where we will be living and it's starting to seriously stress me out some. Originally Brodie wasn't going to renew his contract with the US Army, however we're considering it now. They've offered us some deals that we kinda have to consider. Here are the the choices:
  • We move back to La Jolla and take jobs doing something tbd. This means Brode leaves active duty with the military as originally planned. Brodie was looking at joining the Foreign Service and this is still a strong option. This was intially the first choice for us because we wanted to be back in SoCal and Brode's parents are down there. Besides it's the land of sunny beaches, Disneyland, and In N Out, doesn't get much better than that! The major con is neither of us really have job ideas in San Diego right now, but oh well-- I miss the homeland. Besides, if Brode did go the FSO route SoCal would be just temporary because we'd end up in Wash. DC for a year of training and then wherever the state department sent us.
  • Next choice and option is to move to Texas. You read that right Texas... not the first choice, but actually would be a decent place to be for awhile. I've been talking with some people at the GOP offices in Austin and Brode's been talking with the army about relocating to Fort Houston in San Antonio and running some stuff down there. This is actually not a bad option for us. Only problem is we'd have to live between the two cities which means in the freakin' middle of nowhere Texas! I don't mind Austin or San Antonio, but an hour away from both would kinda suck which is what we're looking at if we move here; not to mention a somewhat long commute for one or both of us.
  • The latest one that was proposed this last week was moving to Nashville. And yes, you read that right too- I could be living in Tennesse. (Yeah, I'm just as shocked to read the words too.) Brode has been in talks to take over a post at Fort Campbell. I'm really not liking this option much at all. Did I mention Fort Campbell is on the TN-KY border and there is a slight chance we'd end up living in Kentucky? Writing "Kentucky" or "Tennesee" as my address is pretty much just as bad as Arkansas, Alabama, or New Mexico. Seriously, though what am I going to do in Nashville or Kentucky? I really want to veto this one big time, but can't yet.
  • Final option I guess would be we stay in Kansas. Well I'd still have to move there, but Kansas is sounding better than Nashville. We already have good friends in the area, a house, and know and like the area enough to make it home for awhile.
Right now it's looking like it's between middle of nowhere Texas and stupid Nashville. I'm really not sure how this happened and I wish La Jolla would win out. However, I'm also well aware that there are things that could be worse- like redeployment. Anyway, least this latest move would keep us out of that arena and I feel kinda selfish saying that. So say a prayer with us for the men and women serving overseas in combat zones and for their families at home.

(*I have to say this, President Obama's plan for Afghanistan is a disaster waiting to happen! It will just escalate the war and if anyone thought the Iraq war was ill planned-- get ready for another Vietnam situation.)