Step 3: The First year of marriage…

(Warning… This post does cover our ENTIRE first year of marriage… It’s a long one!!  Consider yourself warned!)

Paul and I started our first year of marriage with some BIG news, he had gotten a job!!  Yay!!  Since he had officially been out of the military since August, it was wonderful to get the news that he had been hired by the FAA!  The news didn’t stop there… His new job would require him to attend 3 months of training in Oklahoma City, OK starting January 3rd 2008!  Once he completed the training, he would be employed at Memphis Air Route Traffic Control Center in Memphis, TN.  So, no he doesn’t work at the airport with the glow in the dark sticks, he talks to the planes while they are flying high in the sky!!  Sorry to disappoint!

We had been planning on going to Little Rock, AR for Thanksgiving two weeks after we got married, so we decided this would be the ideal time to start looking for a home in the greater Memphis area.  I decided that we also needed to treat ourselves to at least 3 days of relaxation!  We had decided from the beginning to not plan a big honeymoon because we knew there would be a chance we would be moving.  So, we planned a mini-honeymoon spending 2 nights and 3 days in the Smokey Mountains at a lovely bed and breakfast in Gatlinburg, TN! 

As we drove up to the Berry Springs Lodge  it was absolutely picturesque.  It had a long winding driveway up a mountain, but once you got to the top and the lodge it was breathtaking.  We had a wonderful bedroom, which had a 2 person hot tub on a private balcony overlooking the mountains!  They had hiking trails to fully stocked ponds, tons of games, and the most wonderful breakfasts in the mornings!!  The couple who owned the lodge were just wonderful and helped us make dinner plans to see the “Dixie Stampede”, which was soo much fun!  We did some shopping, some sightseeing (which included my sorority’s primary philanthropy and elementary school), and just enjoyed some quiet time together! 

The lodge as you come up the mountain

The lodge as you come up the mountain

View from our private balcony

View from our private balcony

Paul in his dream car, the Trans Am from Smokey and the Bandit (Burt Reynolds drove this car!)

Paul in his dream car, the Trans Am from Smokey and the Bandit (Burt Reynolds drove this car!)

In front of Arrowmont which was my sorority's first Philanthropy

In front of Arrowmont which was my sorority's first Philanthropy

 

After enjoying 3 days in Gatlinburg, we headed off to Memphis to meet with our realtor and start looking for a house.  We drove around a bit, and saw a couple of homes, but decided to wait until our drive through to Oklahoma City to take any serious action.  So, off we went to Little Rock to enjoy Thanksgiving!

Once back in Virginia Beach from our Thanksgiving travels, we had a major decision to make.  In order to easily qualify for a home loan, I needed to be gainfully employed, and so did Paul.  We knew Paul’s job required him to be in Oklahoma City, and at the time mine required me to stay in Virginia Beach.  We made the decision that I would travel with Paul to Oklahoma City and stay for a couple of days, and then I would return to Virginia Beach and continue working until it was time to buy our home! 

Being a member of the Navy, Paul was granted one final household move.  On December 27, the Navy packers came and boxed up our entire apartment.  On the 28th, the movers came, put all the boxes on the truck.  Shortly after, I returned home from work, we threw the last couple of items in the car, and we were on the road.  We stopped in Memphis again to hunt for a house, and found what we thought was a PERFECT home!  We put in an offer and it was accepted!!  We would be back in the middle of January for a final walk through and would be homeowners in the middle of February!  From there we went off to Little Rock to spend New Years with some of our best friends. 

New Years 2008 with Shane and Bethany

New Years 2008 with Shane and Bethany

 

We spent New Years Day with Paul’s family watching the Arkansas Bowl Game.  Bright and early on the 2nd we were off to Oklahoma City to get acquaintedwith Paul’s new digs for 3 months!  We did some grocery shopping and got ready for Paul’s first day of training.  He had a successful couple of days and before I knew it we were saying goodbye at the airport, with plans to meet back in Memphis in 2 weeks.

Back in Virginia Beach, I went back to work, andwas living with a very wonderful friend and her roommate, who became another great friend.  But, I missed my husband, and I know deep down he missed me too!  Mid January we headed back to Memphis to finalize our home!  Needless to say, things didn’t work out exactly how we planned them.  We ended up having to find another home!  In the end we found a nicer neighborhood and an even better home!  However, because of the delay, we couldn’t close on our home until the middle of March. 

In the middle of February, my boss gave me the okay to leave town.  He said I could work remotely from Oklahoma City and then from Memphis.  How fortunate was I?  I loved being able to live with my husband again, 2 months is a LONG time to go without the person you love!!  While we were in Oklahoma City we were able to take a long weekend trip to Dallas/Fort Worth.  It was such an exciting trip, and we had a GREAT time!

One of the Longhorns in Fort Worth

One of the Longhorns in Fort Worth

In front of the book depository in Dallas

In front of the book depository in Dallas

 

In March, some of our best friends, Shane and Bethany tied the knot in Little Rock, and we were there to share in their special day, just as they came to Virginia Beach the previous November to share in ours.

Paul and Shane... Married Men!

Paul and Shane... Married Men!

 

Mid March we found out we got our house!!  It was time to move!  Paul also found out he would need to stay in Oklahoma City an additional 2 weeks for some extra training.  So, I was in charge of going to Memphis to close on our first home, ALONE!!  For those of you who have ever purchased a home, you know the stress that is included in this.  We purchased a new build, so on top of just the closing aspects, I had to schedule the Navy movers to deliver our furniture, and deliveries for my new appliances!  What a crazy moving week.  Thank goodness for my wonderful sister in law Susan who came and helped!!  Here is a picture of our beautiful home in a suburb of Memphis.

Our Home

Our Home

 

Over the next couple of months I spent a lot of time traveling for work, Paul started to get into a routine at work, and we started to settle into our new home.  We took advantage of being closer to Paul’s family, and having the chance to spend some “holiday’s” with them, such as Father’s Day and Fourth of July. 

Around 4th of July, Paul decided it was time for him to get a motorcycle.  So, as I went to the dealership (after he picked it out) and arranged all the paperwork!  One of Paul’s friends here in Memphis helped me surprise him at work with his new bike!

Paul's Bike

Paul's Bike

 

In August Paul became a Godfather to Shane and Bethany’s daughter, Sophie Jane.  Paul called in sick to work that day so that we could drive to Little Rock to be there to share in that moment!  It was so great to be there with Shane and Bethany and spend some time with their beautiful baby girl.  We loved her instantly!!

Paul and Sophie

Paul and Sophie

 

In September we made the trip to St. Louis to visit Paul’s sister Lara, who had recently relocated there for a new job!  Paul’s whole family went together, and it was great getting to see the sights of St. Louis.  We went to the top of the St. Louis Arch, Visited Grants Farm, and the Budweiser Brewery.  I was extremely excited because my sorority’s headquarters are right outside St. Louis and we were able to stop by and see the building! 

The goats at Grant's Farm were VERY excited about bottles!

The goats at Grant's Farm were VERY excited about bottles!

In the top of the Arch

In the top of the Arch

Enjoying a drink after our Brewery Tour

Enjoying a drink after our Brewery Tour

 

In front of Headquarters

In front of Headquarters

Halloween is one of my favorite holidays.  I love everything about it, the pumpkin patch, the cooler weather, carving pumpkins, handing out candy, dressing up, EVERYTHING!!  I couldn’t wait to decorate around the house, and carve pumpkins.  We waited a little too long to go get our pumpkins (not a mistake we will make again) so the pickings were slim.  We ended up with 2 pumpkins, carved them up, and placed them outside.  Our camera doesn’t exactly agree with us most of the time, and we couldn’t get any really good pictures of them all lit up.  Regardless, here is a picture of our pumpkins.  Paul’s is the one with the pirate face, mine with the (freehand) awareness ribbon! 

Our Pumpkins (this picture was taken at night!)

Our Pumpkins (this picture was taken at night!)

 

To celebrate our one year anniversary we went out to eat at the Melting Pot, how delicious!!  No pictures from that night… I know, very disappointing!

Well that sums up our first year of marriage, November 2007-November 2008.  We have had QUITE a few things happen since our anniversiary, some of which will come in the next post.  With background information in place, it is about time to explain why I started this blog in the first place…  But that will have to wait for the next post!!

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4 Responses to “Step 3: The First year of marriage…”

  1. Jennifer Says:

    I just have to say this blog is so neat!! REALLY I love it!! I just read it and wanted to keep reading, your a great story teller. And it helps that you guys have a fantastic story!!!

  2. Bethany Says:

    I’m very impressed!! Can’t wait for the next step!!!

  3. Robin Harper Says:

    I got your blog address from Paul and he said that you read mine also. Congrats on the pregnancy, can’t wait to hear all about it! I hope you’re feeling good and resting as much as you can. I’ve enjoyed reading your story so far, looking forward to hearing more!

  4. Brenda Says:

    I love it!!! I can’t wait to hear some more of the story!!! I agree with Jennifer, you are a great story teller. You will have to make a book out of this blog for your baby……..maybe some sort of book you can add to or a scrap book with the story from the blog in it!

    Hugs,
    Brenda

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