Wednesday, January 28, 2009

The Day I (Eventually) Said Yes

Saturday, January 24. Jared picked me up at about 7:30 AM to go on a trip. He told me to expect about a 4 hour drive, but left the location a surprise. Eventually, I figured out that we were going to the Outer Banks. We had put that location on our to-do list, but didn't really plan on going there anytime soon. It had been really cold the past week and was supposed to be warmer Saturday, so we were ready for some outside fun.

The first thing we did when we got to the Outer Banks was visit the Bodie Lighthouse and visitor's center. Basically, we walked through the small visitor's center, walked around the lighthouse, took a few pictures, and that was it. Next, we were off to Kitty Hawk, the home of flight, to visit the Wright Brothers National Memorial. This place was cool. They have monuments marking where the plane took off (the monorail they used to slide the plan on is still there) and the 3 locations where it landed. Ok, moving on. Next, we went to the Currituck Lighthouse. This lighthouse was closed for the winter, but we were able to sneak in (well...there wasn't much sneaking involved since the gate was unlocked) and walk around the grounds. The groundskeeper or whoever he was that lives there told us about a wildlife center just a short walk from the lighthouse, so we went there next. The woman working there told us that we should come back at sunset because you can sit right on the water in a gazebo and watch the sunset over the sound. (Remember, we're on the east coast, so the sun doesn't set over the ocean.) We thought that sounded pretty fun. We had about an hour before the sun would start setting, so we drove a short way to the beach on the ocean side and walked around for a bit. Jared didn't mind the brisk temperature, but I was freezing so we didn't stay very long. We went back to the sound and took a seat at a gazebo on the water. But first, I snagged this awesome picture of the bridge/walkway.

It was beautiful. It was a cloudy day, so we kept waiting for the sun to peek out from behind the clouds. It was pretty close to disappearing when I finally got up and told Jared I was going to take a picture. So I walked to the edge of the gazebo closest to the horizon and took a few pictures. When I turned around, I saw Jared just a couple feet behind me, on one knee. Jared says I did a double take from his face to the ring and back to his face. I just stood there in absolute shock/surprise/confusion. And then we had a conversation that went like this:

Jared: "Jenn, will you marry me?"
Jenn: "Are you serious?"
Jared: "Yes."
Jenn: "Are you serious?"
Jared: "Yes!"
Jenn: "Are you serious?"
Jared: "YES! I wouldn't joke about this!"
Jenn: "Yes!"

Then we hugged. But rather than soaking in the moment, my mind just kept spinning. 'Was this for real? I feel like I'm being pranked. He's such a jokester, but would he joke about this? Maybe he is joking. Maybe he just wanted to see what I would say so he would be more confident asking me later. Oh gosh, I can't believe I said yes to a fake question. I feel so dumb.' So then we had another conversation that went like this:

Jenn: "Are you serious?"
Jared: "Yes, I'm serious."
Jenn: "Are you serious?"
Jared: "I don't know how else to tell you that I am serious."

Finally, I believed him (sort of) and we took some pictures to commemorate the moment.

Then, we starting our drive back to Raleigh, looking for a place to eat on the way. The Outer Banks thrives with tourists in the summer, but it's pretty dead in the winter, so lots of the restaurants were closed. We finally found a seafood restaurant called Mako Mike's and ate there. While the decor was...odd (think cruise ship/children's play area/80s interior decorating), it had a comfy, vacationy (touristy) feel to it and the crab legs were delicious.

So...we're getting married June 6 in Dallas. And now you are all up to date and in the know.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Calling all dream interpreters

I had a strange dream last night. I was at a ski resort with Jared, Jeff, Renae, Kyle, Lynn, and two girls I don't know in real life, but I knew in my dream, with funky names like Timber and Ash. This ski resort was odd in so many ways. First, it was not on a mountain. It was more like a waterpark, where you walk up 8 flights of stairs and slide down. Except here you had to carry your skis up 8 awkward, narrow flights of stairs and then ski down, which probably lasted .2 seconds. The good thing was that the stairs were mostly indoor, so you were at least protected from the elements on your journey up. So at one point, I was taking the "lift" up to a "run," when I realized I had to pee really badly. For some reason, I felt embarassed to tell Timber that I need to go to the bathroom, so I started to consider peeing my pants. How obvious could it be? I had big thick snow pants, people would probably just think I fell on my butt in the now. But suddenly, I looked down and realized I forgot to put on ANY of my ski clothes OR my boots. (I also didn't have my skis, but that did not seem to concern me.) I was just wearing shorts and a t-shirt. No socks or shoes, no hat, no gloves. Luckily, since the lift was not really a lift, I easily walked down the stairs and across the street to our stinky motel room (could this nightmare be related to a real-life nightmare?) to use the bathroom and put on my ski clothes.

At another point in my dream, I was inside a room at the resort with Ash when an albino alligator (with a hard shell on top, like a turtle) started attacking us! (Imagine this crossed with this, which I think was inspired when I saw this on Planet Earth.) We couldn't get out of the room because it was blocking our exit, so we tried defending ourselves, but it was really hard to fight off because of its hard shell. We tried jumping on it, throwing things at it, kicking it underneath its shell. But all of these things made the alligator more vicious (imagine that) and more intent on making us dinner. I don't know how it happened, but eventually I looked around the room and noticed it wasn't there anymore. So we left.

Saturday, January 10, 2009


I'm not a big fan of using text speak like LOL, mostly because it's usually not true. People use LOL as a filler, not as an abbreviation to describe what is really happening. But I am using it now because the following blogs did in reality leave me laughing out loud. Enjoy.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

The Big House

Seems like the place I live has been affectionately dubbed "The Big House." Which, you is. Everyone that comes over gets a tour. Seriously, everyone. I think it happens about twice a day. Anyway, I have decided to give all of you a tour. But if you want the real deal, you have to come visit.

We'll start with the outside. First, I live in a great little neighborhood. It is very, very small - probably only 20 houses or less. The main road outside my neighborhood is pretty and quaint and lined with pine trees. On this road, you have the pleasure of passing a small lake and a bunch of cows. Sometimes I feel like I'm in the "country" when I'm driving on this road, but I am still very close (5-10 minutes) to everything (grocery store, bank, NC State campus).

Imagine you have just arrived at my house. This is what you would see:

You could pull into the driveway (or garage) on the right side:

Or, you could pull into the driveway (or garage) on the left side:

If you decide to use the front entrance, you would see this:

Before going inside, you could walk around to the backyard and you would see this:

Then, you could walk up the stone steps onto the deck and take a closer look at our grill and screened deck:

Now, let's walk back around to the front of the house and enter through the front door. You will now be privileged to see this:

For a different view of the front room, we can walk up the staircase to the top level and look down. It will look like this:

We are not going to tour the top level because it basically contains: 2 bedrooms, 1 bathroom, and a messy craft room.

We will now go to the living room. It looks like this:

Next to the living room is the kitchen:

Here is the breakfast area, which is where we do all our eating, not just breakfast. Because it's the only table we have.

Oh, and when we hire a butler, here is his pantry, complete with a wine cooler (where we store 2-liters of soda):

Now, let's head downstairs to the basement, which is at least three times as big as my last apartment. Here is a big room with pretty much nothing in it:

Oh, but what is through those open doors? That's our media room! Check it out:

It even has movie theatre lighting:

Also in the basement: a really large bedroom, bathroom, LOTS of closets, a bar with sink and (another) wine cooler.

Going back upstairs to the main floor, we can find: the master bedroom with a closet pretty much as big as my last bedroom, a bathroom that could fit a queen size bed, a seriously large bathtub, and a high-tech shower. I have not taken any pictures of this bedroom because it is (unfortunately) not mine.

BUT, my bedroom is also on this floor. Here is what it looks like:

Please do not make fun of my bedding. In my last apartment, the (twin) bed was furnished, so I have a couple sets of twin bedding. When I moved here, I had no bed, but was blessed by the wonderful generosity of a girl at church who gave me her old full-size bed (and dresser!). And I haven't bought new bedding yet, because...that's just not at the top of my necessity list when I don't have an income.

Anyway, if you promise not to gag at how many pictures you can see of Jared and me, you may now look at this view of my room (and private bathroom!):

Oh, whose jetted tub is that? Mine! And the best part is I only have to share it with me.

This did not come with the house, but for those of you that have not seen it, this is my awesome (and soap-scummy) world map shower curtain:

Ok, so my house is pretty awesome, right? Right. But there are a few quirks that I have to point out.
  • There are 16 electrical outlets in my room. Sixteen. I cannot imagine a scenario in which I would need to plug in 16 electronics at the same time.
  • My closet is pretty awesome, especially since it's big enough to camp in. Also, it has 2 rows of bars to hang clothes on. Cool, right? Except for the fact that neither of them are tall enough to hang dresses. All I have to say is this was OBVIOUSLY built by a man:
  • In the living room, there are these nice white cabinets, where we could store all these games so the shelves did not look like this. BUT, the cabinets don't open. And there is NOTHING behind them. There is no reason why they shouldn't be used to store things except that they are mysteriously bolted shut.
  • Oh, so I know I said I wasn't going to take you on a tour of the top floor, but I do have to point out this strange feature, for which I have no explanation:

Thanks for coming on the tour!