Friday, October 12, 2012

Mistakes from which to learn

I've never been married before. I have no idea what I'm doing. Each day, month and year brings a new experience that allows me to either succeed or fail grow as a wife. Following are some experiences I've had that have enlightened me and perhaps might help others, too. (Thank goodness for the sacrament of reconciliation!)

1. Comparing our marital journey to others' marital journeys. I know, it seems kind of ironic to say that this is a mistake in marriage when I'm writing a blog on the topic of marriage for others to read and potentially take some advice from, ha! We've already established I'm clueless when it comes to what it takes to have a long, healthy, holy and successful marriage. Regardless, it is not healthy to compare yourself to others in any way other than growing in holiness, really, and that might even be a stretch. One couple's journey is not your own, so putting yourself on any kind of timeline or checklist of perceived accomplishments sets you and your spouse up for a rocky road full of unnecessary rushing of things and potential envy or jealousy. No bueno.

2. Forgetting to let Mark relax and veg in his free time. So my husband works up to 10 hours a day, five days a week and sometimes on weekends, especially when he's traveling. There is no "comp time" in his company; they all work their tooshies off. To describe Mark as hardworking is probably an understatement. More often than I care to admit, I get annoyed or don't understand when all my husband wants to do after coming home from a long day at work or finding a few days' rest during the weekend is relax and rejuvenate himself. I have to remember that it is in my general nature to be a busybody; I have an extremely difficult time sitting down in front of the television and not doing anything but watching whatever's on. I have a hard time sitting still while I'm at home because my eyes eventually start wondering around and my mind is triggered by seeing things I need to work on. That's fine for me (though I need to learn to slow down, too!), but not everyone needs to be just like me. While my husband certainly enjoys being a handyman and working on projects around the house, every night or every weekend does not need to be project time, and he more than deserves time to just do nothing. Doesn't everyone from time to time? This is my opportunity to bless him by loving him, serving him and giving him the time he wants to not think. Thank you for all you do to support our family, honey!

3. Wanting to be recognized for every sacrifice or extra effort I put into blessing our marriage and home life. "I have never wished for human glory, contempt it was that had attraction for my heart; but having recognized that this again was too glorious for me, I ardently desire to be forgotten." ~ St. Thérèse de Lisieux. Oh, to be that holy! It is a mighty thing to swallow your pride (if that's what this is?) and do what needs to be done, or even giving that extra umph to make things special, without wanting Mark to notice. It's not that I even do this as much as I should, it's just those times when I long to receive praise for behaving or serving in a way that is really already expected as a woman trying to grow as a Godly wife.

What kind of mistakes do you keep making in your marriage? Are there any you have stopped making? How do you do that?

Oct. 25, 2008, Jessica and Jamon Copeland's wedding

Friday, September 21, 2012

Port Aransas vacation

Mark's parents planned a recent mini-vacation to Port Aransas, Texas, which was fabulous since I haven't been to the beach in two years! Whoa, I was overdue. This was supposed to be a Destin year for us (you know I generally go every other year), but we couldn't swing it this year. NEXT YEAR, we are going, come hell or high water. Seriously.

Ha, but our Port A Crowley trip was full of good times! We, unfortunately, just missed Katie, Paul and Kenna as we arrived a couple days after everyone had gotten there, and it was also when KPK needed to head back home for work. We were able to spend a few days with Veronica, David and the girls as well as Peter and Judy and Rich. I was having such a wonderful time soaking up the sun that I stayed a day past when Mark left and instead rode home with Judy and Rich. I fell asleep on the beach one day and was lucky Mark and his parents came out to find me before I completely roasted like a lobster. I don't remember ever having done that!

I'll be headed back to a beach in just a few weeks when I go on my sister's bachelorette cruise to Cozumel, Mexico ... yippee! Ah, how I adore the beach. Vacation is just good for the soul.

 Jen and Veronica

 Peter and Jen


 Violet and Olivia

 Mark and Jen

 Jen and Mark

 Mmmm....seafood boil

 Beautiful day!

Judy and Rich

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Date Night Recap 9/11/12: Sushi Night

I'm so excited that even though my husband's least favorite food is seafood, he'll still take me out for sushi! Last night was his night to plan Date Night, and he picked Mikado Ryotei, rated No. 3 on Trip Advisor's top sushi restaurants in Austin (after Uchi and Finn & Porter).

Tuesdays are great to go to Mikado Ryotei because they have discounted prices on Tuesday for their sushi, which was delish! We got two orders of sushi and four rolls (I think), edamame, a beer for Mark and sake for the both of us, and the total was only $37. Nice!! It's not too often we get away with a total price of Date Night under $40.

After sushi, we headed home to watch "Courageous." I really enjoyed the movie, which was about a group of small town law enforcement officers who realized how important the role of fatherhood plays, and they all make a resolution to strive to become holier fathers and husbands. A tear jerker at times with a meaningful message and reminder to everyone -- everyone because we all have a father.

I recommend both the restaurant and movie!

June 13, 2009. Cheers to us!

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Date Night Recap 3/27/12: Andiamo's Wine Dinner

What a fun date the other night for Date Night -- the idea courtesy of my father-in-law, Rich Crowley! Mark and I went to a Wine Dinner at Andiamo Ristorante, where I had rabbit for the first time! I enjoyed it, but I don't think Mark was a big fan (of the rabbit). The four-course dinner was led by an Italian gentleman who was a wine sommelier, so that was neat, too. He gave some good background and explanations of the wines. I believe these wine dinners are monthly, so you should definitely check them out! At $45 pp, it wasn't as expensive as most wine dinners normally are, but it is more than we usually like to spend on Date Night. Regardless, what a fun date. When it involves wine (and it usually does), it always is! :)

Oct. 10, 2008; Dad's and Debbie's wedding

Monday, March 26, 2012

Date Night recap 3/20/12

So last week's Date Night was Mark's, and here were the evening's events:

1. Hemingway Restaurant & Bar, 500 Cypress Creek Road, Suite 170, Cedar Park, Texas 78613
We headed out a little bit later than usual as Mark was getting ready to go out of town for work, so he worked late. We grabbed dinner at this new place, which is just down the road from us. Try their squash with dill -- delish! I also had their mussels, which were pretty good but there weren't enough to fill me up. I ordered the squash for dessert, ha! So healthy of me. Cheap bottles of wine here!

2. The Dig Pub, 401 Cypress Creek Road, Suite 600, Cedar Park, TX 78613
We headed across the street from where we had dinner to this bar, which is always pretty swinging every time we pass by. After having been Cedar Park residents for about three years now, we figured we should finally check it out! I thought it was going to have the atmosphere of a dive bar inside, but it was much different than I expected. I was pleasantly surprised! It was pretty nice and spacy inside. It had a nice bar area then another area that had a stage where some amateur comedians were taking the stage. I ordered a glass of rosé and we played a game of darts while we listened to the comedians. We eventually grabbed a seat near the front of the room close to the stage. While we didn't exactly have the same sense of humor as some of the gentlemen who were showcasing their talent, it was entertaining, and I had a good time. I definitely think we'll be back!

June 13, 2009

Monday, March 19, 2012

Litany of St. Joseph

On today, the Solemnity of Saint Joseph, husband of the Blessed Virgin Mary, let us ask for St. Joseph's intercession in asking for blessings upon our marriages, for husbands and wives everywhere, that we may all be given the grace to continually grow together in holiness and ever more reflect the love of Christ for His Church ...

Litany of St. Joseph
Taken from Catholic Household Blessings & Prayers

Lord, have mercy...Lord, have mercy
Christ, have mercy...Christ, have mercy
Lord, have mercy...Lord, have mercy

God our Father in heaven...have mercy on us
God the Son, Redeemer of the world...have mercy on us
God the Holy Spirit...have mercy on us
Holy Trinity, one God...have mercy on us

Holy Mary...pray for us
St. Joseph...pray for us
Noble son of the House of David...pray for us
Light of patriarchs...pray for us
Husband of the Mother of God...pray for us
Guardian of the Virgin...pray for us
Foster father of the Son of God...pray for us
Faithful guardian of Christ...pray for us
Head of the Holy Family...pray for us
Joseph, chaste and just...pray for us
Joseph, prudent and brave...pray for us
Joseph, obedient and loyal...pray for us
Pattern of patience...pray for us
Lover of poverty...pray for us
Model of workers...pray for us
Example to parents...pray for us
Guardian of virgins...pray for us
Pillar of family life...pray for us
Comfort of the troubled...pray for us
Hope of the sick...pray for us
Patron of the dying...pray for us
Terror of evil spirits...pray for us
Protector of the Church...pray for us

Lamb of God, you take away the sins of the world...have mercy on us
Lamb of God, you take away the sins of the world...have mercy on us
Lamb of God, you take away the sins of the world...have mercy on us

God made him master of his household.
And put him in charge of all that he owned.

Let us pray. Almighty God, in your infinite wisdom and love you chose Joseph to be the husband of Mary, the mother of your Son. As we enjoy his protection on earth may we have the help of his prayers in heaven. We ask this through Christ our Lord. Amen.

August 2008

Thursday, January 12, 2012

What I loved in 2011

30 days of gifts | babies | Bahamas | beaches | big yellow sun hat | blessings | blogs | Blondie | brunch | cappuccinos | Coach purse | cookbook club | cooking | cruising | dancing | date nights | encouragement | engagements | entertaining | family | feeding exotic animals | fireplaces | friends | Ft. Lauderdale | gardening | God | godchildren | happy hours | hot tub | hubby | hugs | kisses | Lady Gaga concert | laughs | littleness | long hair | love | Mark | marriage | mother and daughters weekend retreat | movie nights | mussels | neighbors | needing to go to sleep | New York at Christmastime | nieces | parties | patio | podcasts | prayers | rooftop bars | Sarah's Hope | sequin dresses | smiles | St. Maarten | St. Thomas | scuba diving | support | tiredness | travels | Vegas | vino | weddings | working out

Cruise, July 2011
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