Friday, September 24, 2010

Are you ready to RUMBLE?!

Nolan's parents came to visit us last weekend, and we had such a great time with them!  It was their first trip to Wake Forest, and so when they got here, Nolan and I were waiting for them on the balcony of our apartment which overlooks the road.  The anticipation of seeing them drive by was FUN and we could not stop waving and hollering!  I've decided that this should be our new tradition whenever anyone comes to visit :) Here's a re-cap of our Rumble weekend:

FRIDAY: After giving them the tour of our cozy apartment and visiting for a little bit, we went out to eat at Las Palmas Mexican Restaurant. Then, we went and saw this movie: 


Do I even have to say that the boys picked this movie? The freaky nun masks the bank robbers wore almost gave me nightmares.  It was soooo intense, and I'm pretty sure that I had teared away all of my fingernails by the time the credits were rolling!  After the movie, Mama Jackie requested some icecream.  I think she had some of that "soft and creamy goodness" I've referenced in an earlier post on her mind :)

Man, that "Carolina Concrete" is delish! Once we had finished our ice-cold treats, we returned home to our apartment and called it a night (only after a few Glee episodes, of course!)

SATURDAY:  Everyone had their morning coffee on the balcony and enjoyed some time of sweet conversation.  Mama J and I made eggs and bacon for breakfast.  After eating, we got dressed and were ready to hit the town for a tour of Southeastern.  Here's some of my favorite pics from the morning:   
Once we were finished at SEBTS, we walked around downtown Wake Forest, stopping for coffee and checking out the Farmers Market and several quaint little shops.  The Old Magnolia Trading Company on the downtown strip is my NEW favorite place where I found this pretty frame for my "beachy" bedroom (more pictures to come!) 

After walking and shopping around downtown, we decided to go on an adventure to find one of the lakes in the Wake Forest area.  One short drive and a mini-hike later, we were on the edge of Falls Lake, looking out over the water and watching boats go by.  It was so relaxing and beautiful.  Here's a couple pics we took there:

We decided to head back to the apartment for some down-time after hanging out at Falls Lake for a bit.  Once we got home, we watched the UT/Florida Gators game on the computer (no cable!) and then ate dinner at our most favorite restaurant in Wake Forest: Shuckers.  This oyster bar and grill has some killer seafood and hush puppies that are to die for... seriously.  Let's just say none of us had any room for desert!  After dinner, we made it back to the apartment and watched ONE MORE Glee episode before heading to bed! :)

SUNDAY: We woke up and got ready for the early service at North Wake.  After church, we grabbed some lunch at Red Robin before Mom and Dad had to hit the road to make their way back home to Cleveland.  I started missing them the minute we waved good-bye from our balcony.  It was such a wonderful time with them, though, and a weekend I will always cherish.  Thank you both for going out of your way to visit and be a part of our lives and new home here.  We love you with all our hearts and are so grateful for every minute of our time together.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Can a girl have TWO homes?

I made my very first "on my own" road trip home to Cleveland for Labor Day weekend, and I was OH SO happy to see my family and some very dear friends of mine! After just a few days though, I was already thinking about my new home in North Carolina, mainly, getting back to my man and my kitty-child :)  So many people have encouraged me to start viewing Wake Forest as my "home," and have said that doing so will make the transition easier on me.  But the more I think about it, the more I feel like I have two homes. 

Cleveland will always be home because it holds so many of our most precious memories.  It's where Nolan and I were raised for the majority of our lives.  It's where we found one another in the hallway of our middle school and where we exchanged wedding vows.  It's where we received salvation.  It's where we will take children of our own some day.  But now, Wake Forest is our home away from home.  It's where the Lord has called us.  It's where we will begin a family.  It's where we will make new friends.  It's where we will grow in our love for Christ and one another.  It's where we have found God's peace.  

I was thinking about all of this during my 7 1/2 hour drive home on Tuesday, and couldn't help but thank the Lord for how he has blessed us and provided the foundation for a home here in Wake Forest.  Here's some things that we are absolutely LOVING about our new home in North Carolina:

#1)  North Wake.  We've really enjoyed having the freedom to visit churches and experience worship in our community over the last month and a half.  Although we have visited some really wonderful churches, we have felt the Lord drawing us to North Wake.  Every time we have visited here, the Lord has made it more and more clear that this is where He wants us to serve.  We had the opportunity to visit one of North Wake's small groups- what a blessing it was to connect with other men and women who have followed God to Wake Forest in faith and obedience to God.  This church is such an answer to our prayers.

#2) One word: Goodberry's.  Now, a lot of you are thinking, "What in the world is Goodberry's?"  That was our thought, too, until we put the "soft and creamy goodness" (Nolan's words- not mine) in our mouths.  It's definitely the best ice cream we've ever tasted! If you ever come to visit, Goodberry's will be a mandatory stop during your Wake Forest tour. :) YUMMY!

#3) Our NEW CAR! My dad thought it would be best for us to trade in Nolan's old white Accord for a car that's a little more dependable for long-distance road trips.  He found us a silver Mazda Tribute, and we love it!  It's a great car and it will always remind us of our years in North Carolina!

#4) The beach.  A two-hour drive to the beach is NOTHING when you are used to traveling seven to eight hours to make your way to the closest coast!  We have claimed Wrightsville Beach near Wilmington as "our beach." :) It's such a beautiful area and is known for having great surf waves during certain parts of the year.  Let's just say a surf board may be on Nolan's Christmas list this year! :) We love it there and will be making many trips during our years in North Carolina. 

5)  Super Target! I cannot even begin to tell you how excited I was when I found out I have a Target in Wake Forest, but a SUPER-Target, nonetheless.  I can always think of something I need or could use from this awesome store. :)  Not only is the Super-Target a convenient 5 to 10 minutes from our apartment, but so is everything else like Wal-Mart, Harris Teeter, Walgreens, Goodberry's, the post office, our bank, and lots of other places!

I'm sure there will be much more that I grow to love about our new home over the next few years.  If the saying "Home is where your Heart is" is true, then Wake Forest, North Carolina and Cleveland, Tennessee will both forever be a home to me.