Monday, September 5, 2011


Sorry once again to have not updated in forever. The truth is, life is busy, and blogging is about the only thing I can actually give up. But I'll try to update every now and then.

Of course the big news is that Isaac and I are married :) It feels so good--not just in a "I'm so happy!" way, but I have so much peace and joy that it really was meant to be. After wedding prep, wedding, honeymoon, moving, and going to another wedding in Seattle, we are finally settling into normal life. Isaac started his junior year at Gonzaga U, and I have a couple more weeks before my second year of grad school (which, aside from writing and seeing people, I'm unenthusiastic about).

I have two new photo albums on facebook:

~Our new apartment~

Until next time.

Monday, May 23, 2011

I'm a blogging failure.

Two more weeks and my first year of grad school will be over! I've learned a lot about balance this year...realizing that, in fact, getting my master's is not the most important thing in my life--it's just one of many things I am doing right now. Next year I look forward to doing fewer internships (but continuing my Writers' Center GSA), focusing on my thesis, and dedicating more time to friends and neighbors. Oh, and getting used to year #1 of marriage :)

Wedding planning is moving right along. I think it was about the 3-month marker (right after two wonderful friends, Martha and Austin, got married!) when it hit all of a sudden. I think part of the purpose of having a wedding is so that a couple can see how they respond to each other under pressure, and certainly Isaac and I have had times of conflict where we're discovering things about each other and our families. We are learning how to serve and love each other with grace...and often failing...and it has been really wonderful. I am so eager to see how God uses a lifetime of marriage to peel back all these layers of selfishness and disobedience and draw us closer to him. So excited to be married :) It's just recently sinking in.

A couple friends threw me a surprise wedding shower this past weekend--I was thoroughly surprised, and had a ton of fun. It was at Riverside state park at one of the picnic spots next to the hugely overflowing river, and a bunch of girls from school and church came. I felt very special :)

The weather here is awful. Rainy, cold. Every now and then small bursts of sun that just makes it worse when they vanish. There's no way summer is right around the corner.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Thoughts about marriage and death

I suppose a month is quite a while to have gone without posting. Life has been...busy. I've become disgustingly obsessed with time: constantly running through my checklists, figuring out how many hours I've been running around and how many minutes I had free each day, trying to decide what I can skip so I can have a break, being angry at everyone who doesn't understand. Lately it has been getting better, though, and spring break is starting this week.

Wedding planning is moving along. On our end, it has been incredibly slow but still moving. My parents have been wonderful in planning, making calls, coming up with and following through on ideas. If not for them, this wedding would probably not be ready to happen in August. It has been great learning how to plan for marriage, way more important than wedding. Talking to friends and family, meeting with our pastor, talking to each other, learning about conflict and communication and identity and expectations. What a crazy, huge, amazing adventure marriage is! I can't say that it seems any less scary and challenging as it gets closer, but it definitely seems more beautiful.

This past weekend we drove to Portland for Grandma Dorothy's funeral. A full, emotional couple of days. It was incredible to be with family (maybe 25 or so family members were there--more than I can remember ever being with at once) and to support and love each other in a way only we could understand. That connection in that way is something I've never experienced before. I realized how similar and yet how different our memories of Dorothy are, and we deeply enjoyed sharing those with each other.

It's odd to realize how out of control we are. We can't do anything about getting older. My own parents are going to keep getting older and will eventually die. My entire family is going to die. Isaac and I are going to get old (hopefully) and die. We are silly to work so hard to make perfect little brief lives for ourselves, when there is nothing we can do about dying.

Sunday, February 13, 2011


Friday night Isaac and I went to the launch party for Rock & Sling, a journal that Whitworth University recently took over after it stopped publication a while back. One of my poems was published in the first new issue, so that's one of the main reasons we went to the reading/reception event, but I write about it to talk about how Isaac and I are getting folded into this crazy interconnected small-world community.

So we walk into Auntie's Bookstore. First person we see is our pastor, sitting up on the top floor where the reading was going to be. As we're waving, we run into one of Isaac's professors from Spokane Community College. He was also one of Thom Caraway's professors before Thom got his MFA at Eastern. Upstairs, we say hi to Thom Caraway, editor of Rock & Sling, who also happens to go to our church (which we found out months after my poem was accepted). His friend sitting next to him, an English professor at Gonzaga University, also goes to our church and was also published in the issue. When we find a spot to sit, we bump into my cousin Natalie's roommate Katie, who's an intern with Rock & Sling. Then a couple from our church small group. After a few people read, my professor, Chris Howell, gets up and reads some of his poetry. He was also published in this issue (which I was delighted to find out when I picked the journal up at AWP last week). After the reading, we stop to talk to Kristina and Ann, friends from school. A few more friends from school say hi on our way out.

Now, Spokane is not a small town. Small city, maybe, but a city nonetheless. Isaac and I are astonished and overwhelmed by how tight-knit and interconnected the community is and how easy it has been to become a part of it. It's almost like God planned for us to be here ;)

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Catch up day

Ok, wow, lots to talk about.

First, on the whole marriage thing. Isaac and I have been through quite the journey over the past 2 years since we first met, as everyone reading this probably knows. Throughout our whole relationship, I've been waiting for some miraculous "aha" moment where I suddenly knew he was "the one" for me. Honestly, it never happened. We have struggled a ton with my doubt issues, we broke up over the summer, we analyzed everything from every angle, we talked everything to death, we've prayed and prayed and prayed. Really, we've been through the wringer. Since moving to Spokane and giving our relationship another serious go, God has been working in really amazing ways, reshaping my idealism and expectations for marriage and a "soul mate," teaching us what His plan really is for marriage, how it's so much bigger than just finding happiness in each other. We've been overwhelmingly blessed by community--from our families and friends who've known us for years to our new church family in Spokane to counselors with an objective and godly perspective of marriage. Will I ever really be "sure" the way I thought I'd be? Will I be totally free of fear about marriage? I don't think so. But do I know that Isaac is an incredible man of God, that he challenges and supports me, that I love Christ more because of him, that our life vision fits together, that we have fun together, that we can make it through anything? Yes. It's still scary and overwhelming sometimes to think about spending the rest of my life with one person, but I'm becoming more and more ready--and, miraculously, even excited--to make that commitment. It's a huge lesson in trust and hard work.

Second, on the proposal. Because everyone asks me about it and apparently it's pretty important ;) I told Isaac that I was finally ready, that if he proposed I would say yes, and that weekend (since he wasn't going to waste any time!), he made lunch for us at his apartment. He said he had a video to show me, and it was a song he had written and then sang and played on the guitar (which I posted a few days ago). After we watched it and he sang along with it, he got down on one knee and asked if I would marry him. I said yes and cried (it was fairly nerve-racking for me), and he gave me a toy "engagement elephant" (we had decided to pick out rings together). Emotionally, it was different than I'd always imagined. So many crazy emotions. I was instantly overwhelmed and not excited about calling everyone to tell them. It took me a couple days to just let it sink in before I even got excited and was ready to talk about it. Now I'm pretty excited :) and only sometimes overwhelmed by the idea of planning.

Third, on doing things differently. Our friends Erica and Aaron agree that Isaac and I are and will be a couple who do things in a unique way, and I love that idea, as difficult as it is at times. Our relationship for me has been marked by a painful stripping away of all my expectations: What, dating is not about finding someone who fulfills me? He's not perfect? It's ok that I still fight anxiety? We don't have to look or feel like other couples? Love isn't a consistent feeling but a continual commitment? Engagement isn't mainly to plan a wedding but to prepare for a new life? Nothing has looked like I thought, but I know God has unique plans for us that are so much deeper than I could have imagined.

I'm having an interesting battle with American culture right now, a little frustrated that a wedding is supposed to look a certain way. Part of me wants to get swept up in planning--and after all, a healthy dose of excitement is a great thing--but mostly we're really thinking through wedding traditions, from diamond rings to $500 dresses to bridal showers, and trying to figure out which parts we shouldn't just pitch out the window. Our conclusion is that a wedding is not about me looking great in a dress but about inviting our loved ones into a celebration of what God has done and is going to do in us together for the rest of our lives. That's a pretty big reason to have a party.

Fourth, on the rest of life. Insane. Like 7:30 am-10:30 pm every weekday with maybe an hour break. Which is why I haven't really blogged since school started up again. My new GSA job in the Writers' Center is going well, though a little difficult because I don't have much instruction and have to basically make up my own projects. The Getlit! internship is as busy as usual, with my big deadline coming up at the end of January. My other internship with Willow Springs Books is pretty slow right now. Workshop is exhausting. Yoga's good. Rock climbing's good. Church is great. Zumba is fun. Friends are wonderful. Wedding planning is sort of just there, simmering.

Friday, January 21, 2011


I have plenty of things stored up to say about proposal, engagement, emotions, plans, wedding, marriage, craziness, etc etc etc...but no time. For now I'd love some input... Isaac and I trying to decide what ring route to go. We both really like these awesome socially/environmentally "friendly" wood rings--as well as the fabulous couple who makes them--but I'm a bit nervous because, well, they're wood.

Then there's the more traditional route. I'd want a wedding band with diamonds/sapphires in it (no engagement ring); Isaac would get a standard (tungsten?) band. The diamonds and sapphires in these ones also have ethical origins (Canada, haha).

Here are pics. What do you think??

wood with eilat stone (on the right)
wood with lapis lazuli stone

diamonds and sapphires


Thursday, January 6, 2011

Old, Old House

As much as I like the charm of living in a super old house, I'm over all the winter issues it's having. My pipes have broken once and frozen twice; my hot water has stopped; the washing machine is out of order due to flooding. I've had water less often than I haven't, it seems.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Bipolar Winter

You'd think I could stop talking about weather, but I can't. It sounds like everyone across the country is having an insane winter, though. We had a wonderful time in Minnesota.... It was mostly relaxed--a warm, spacious house; plenty of cookies; nightly movie-watching--but we also went snowshoeing a couple times and hung out with a few of my friends (sledding, exploring downtown's miles of skyways). Minnesota has had record-breaking snow (usually it's cold but not super snowy).

We returned yesterday to a frigid (and also very snowy) Spokane--the high was 9 degrees in the middle of the day. My apartment was literally freezing, and even with both my tiny heaters on full blast for 24 hours, it's still not warm. The roads are lethal skating rinks (oh, for the clean roads of Minnesota!); as I write this, I hear car after car spinning out at the intersection with a shrieking sound.

I'm trying to be positive, but I'm not thrilled for this next year. I'm fed up with winter, I'm anxious about school, I'm already starting this quarter behind in my work, I'm cramming too much into my schedule. Happy 2011.