Some Favorites♥

Oh, May... you have been seriously good to me. So good in fact that I'm actually going to be able to link-up with Ashley today because I planned ahead for this post ;) *SCORE!* 
1. Our Anniversary-- duh. I won't bore you any longer with our mushy-love-fest of celebrations, but seriously... being married just rocks.

2. Being in Caleb/Kayla's wedding! Again, hard to put into words how happy we were/are about this day but WE ARE OVERJOYED!! Now come home already so we can make human "M's" anytime we want!

3. Fresh manicures at a friend's house. I haven't had one in monthsssss, so it was nice to have a reason to get gel nails done for the wedding! (Thank you, Seka!)

4. The love and support from the blog community when I shared this post. Keep those prayers coming because let me tell you, I think they are working!!!

5. Setting goals with Jared. We kinda' bombed on a lot of ALL our to-do lists for this month.... but with so much celebrating going on, it was just too hard. So now that I admitted we failed and did nothing productive in May, just know that our June list is looking awesome and I'm excited to tackle them next month!

6. My new camera lens!! I've been using the kit lens that came with my camera for 4+ years and finally treated myself to a 50 mm f/1.8 by Canon. I'm obsessed! I mean, have you ever wanted a cold Mountain Dew more in your life?! ;)

7. Sponsors! Honestly, I meet some of THE best people from the awesome bloggers who choose to sponsor my blog. I am so grateful every time someone decides to hang out on that sidebar with me.... if you haven't checked out any of their blogs, I so encourage you to do so. I have got some genuine, hilarious, caring souls over there. 

Plus- blogging has given me a platform to spread the word about a 5k race I'll be running this weekend and to  help a friend's podcast get some extra exposure as well. Who knew blogging would be this rewarding?! :)
What have been some of YOUR favorite things this month?! :)

Anniversary Celebration(s)

You should know by now that when Jared and I celebrate, we celebrate big. And often. Shouldn't life just be one continuous celebration of SOMETHING?! I sure think so. Birthdays, anniversaries, new jobs, new cars, new babies, new friends.... why not?!

So our anniversary celebration really was three-days long. Sunday we kicked the afternoon off by visiting our local aquarium. Jared took me there on Valentine's Day many years ago, so we were excited to go back and spend a few hours there. The penguins are always a favorite of mine with sharks coming in at a close second. I even got to pet a shark while we were there.... or should I say, Jared had to talk me into petting a shark. They feel rubbery, in case you were wondering!

Then we wandered around and attempted a few pictures by the skyline. Some woman saw us struggling with the holding-out-our-own-camera and offered to snap one for us. I'm half blinking, but this is the best we got ;)

Soon it was time for our much-awaited dinner reservations at Ruth's Chris Steakhouse. We just got one downtown over the winter and had been dying to try it. Best steak and best service I've ever had at any restaurant!!!

Melt-in-your-mouth steaks, fresh asparagus with hollandaise sauce and sweet potato casserole. Plus they brought us a complimentary little dessert sampler for our anniversary. Every last bite at that restaurant was DELICIOUS.

We continued our celebrating on Monday but visiting the covered bridge where we did our first look on our wedding day. I have a personalized photo album that I plan to add an anniversary picture to each year. I think it'll be so fun to have them all in one place years from now. Here are a few of my favorites from this year.

I mean, is he handsome or what?! Whew!!!

And as if we hadn't eaten enough the night before, we finally got to eat at the Mellow Mushroom in town! Prepare to drool. Buffalo chicken ranch pizza on one half. 'Mellow'terranean style on the other.

Are you guys still with me?! I haven't even gotten to our actual anniversary yet! This might end up being the longest post in the history of blogging ;) Tuesday was our actual anniversary so after a crappy, long hard day back at the office- I came home to the cutest of surprises.

Jared had cooked up a yummy taco bar for us because 1. Mexican food is our fave and 2. We are missing our favorite restaurant at our honeymoon resort in Mexico right about now!

After stuffing our faces, we exchanged gifts. We wanted to stay with the traditional 2-year anniversary theme of "cotton" and also didn't want to spend much since our gifts had really been an awesome vacation last month and a fancy dinner out already.

So I was boring and renewed Jared's Sports Illustrated subscription that he had planned on letting expire to save some extra money; and for the cotton gift I got him one of the brand new Bengals tee's for the upcoming season... 100% cotton, right there! ;)

And you guys... Jared was SO creative! (Oh and sidenote- I had not showered in these pictures... I apologize to all of blogland for what you're about to witness)

My very first job was working a tiny, local amusement park in the concession stand. We served all your typical junky fair-type food, but I've always bragged to Jared about my cotton candy swirling expertise. We only live about an hour from the amusement park and I talk about taking Jared there all the time. It's cheap, a little run down and only open to the public a handful of days each summer but I've always wanted Jared and I to have a date there. Well......
Jared MADE "admission tickets" to the amusement park for us, attached money for snacks and rides and of course included some extras with the cotton candy and the CandyLand board game! I mean seriously, how did I marry the sweetest, most creative guy on the planet?!

I've obviously got to step-up my anniversary gifts for next year. Leather, it is!

So Much Love!

I'll attempt to start recapping my actual weekend now... on a Wednesday. That's always acceptable coming off a holiday weekend, right?!

Friday night was the rehearsal/dinner for Caleb & Kayla's wedding! If I've ever seen a bride with that "glow" about her, it was Kayla. She was grinning from ear-to-ear all night, despite that fact that she didn't know where her passport was and hadn't packed yet ;)

Friday night I ended up going back to Kayla's place with her and her family. No other bridesmaids, just me... and I was honored to be there. It was seriously such a special night, even with the the chaos of downloading ceremony music and figuring out how Kayla would wear her hair the next day. She tried her dress on for me, just like I did with her the night before my wedding. It just brought back such great memories, and I was so thrilled to be hanging out with one of my best friends just a few hours before the big day.

Saturday was obviously a whirlwind of FUN. I want to share every single little detail, but I'll leave some of that for Kayla to share when she gets back from Mexico :)

I made myself in charge of feeding Kayla all day ;)

Her gorgeous dress, on the hanger SHE gave ME for my wedding :) 
Bridesmaid bouquets

I don't have ANY ceremony pictures seeing as how Jared and I were both in it- but I cannot wait to see the ones their photographers captured!! :) It was such a beautiful, personal ceremony. Watching Caleb's face as he saw Kayla for the first time was enough to make anyone bawl their eyes out.... so much love!!!

I was totally creeping around and stalking with my own camera after the ceremony :)

Me creeping again while the photographers did their thing ;)
Jared and our good friend Alex--- We'll be going to his wedding in Memphis this August :)

And this family? Loves. To. Dance.

Plus- you know Kayla and I had to recreate a photo from my wedding. I think we did pretty good ;)

Truly an amazing, fun, special day. I couldn't be happier for the two of them-- they deserve the world! Now if they would just get back from their honeymoon already..... we miss our friends!! ;)

Coming tomorrow: Our second anniversary celebrations and gifts!

2 years♥

This weekend has been THE best. I know I'm probably guilty of saying that every weekend is better than the last, but this one..... hand's down, one for the record books. We got to celebrate our best friends gorgeous, perfect wedding and then celebrate our own 2-year anniversary!

It may take me all week to share all the fun photos and moments from this weekend. It was truly a weekend full of love. Wow, I love love! :)

Jared and I have started the tradition of visiting the church we got married at each year on our anniversary. We're going to do our best to make it there each year, and take a picture (or 10) under the covered bridge where we did our "first look" on May 28, 2011.

There are many more pictures and memories and celebrations to come, but for now, I just want to wish my husband a Happy Anniversary. Two entire years since we said "I do" .... it doesn't seem possible!! It's amazing to see how much has changed in our relationship is such a short amount of time. How much we've grown as a couple and how much we've learned. It excites me to know that things just keep getting better. If things can be this great after two years... imagine how they'll be in 5? or 25? I love you Jared- thank you for truly being my absolute best friend.