February 4, 2014

I’m trying to blog more often for everyone back home, can you tell?? (Ha!) I guess it has been about 3 months since I’ve last written anything in here. Hopefully I can do a better job now that Eric and I have a new computer where I can finally keep ALL my pictures (instead of toting them around on an external hard drive) and that should motivate me to update this more often!

A lot has been going on in our lives, but I guess most things pale in comparison to the recent news that we are expecting a baby! Baby Fitzgerald is 14 weeks old (pre-birth) and is due on August 4 of this year. Eric and I are very excited and we are eagerly anticipating finding out whether it’s a boy or a girl in TWO WEEKS! I always wanted to have a cute gender reveal party, but that was a no-go with Eric so our plan right now is to have our ultrasound tech put the gender in an envelope, wisk it over to The Cheesecake Factory that weekend (hopefully my family will be in town for this, too!) and give the envelop to the waiter. The waiter will bring us strawberry cheesecake if it’s a girl and blueberry if it’s a boy. I think it’ll be a fun way to find out, especially if my family will be able to be in town! As far as I’m concerned, a healthy baby is perfect whether it’s a boy or a girl… but we all know what Eric would prefer!

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Other than baby news, we have just been spending time with family over the holidays (which has been wonderful) and enjoying time with our friends. We were able to go home for almost a week over Christmas break and loved spending time there.

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Back in Knoxville we have had fun celebrating birthdays, other pregnancy announcements with friends, and the Super Bowl (all of which I did not do a good job of documenting through pictures!)

We are enjoying life here in Tennessee and are eagerly anticipating warmer weather so that we can clean up our gross looking yard! I look forward most to planting our garden again (after going through this the first year, I have been planning what I definitely want again and what I want to add!) I hope to update this more often now that we have a little one on the way. We hope everyone is doing wonderfully and we hope to see you soon!

– Jess

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November 9, 2013

Well, I doubt that anyone reads this anymore because of my lack of posting! Life has been busy, of course, but I am finally sitting down to write about what’s been going on in our lives!

Let’s see… since February, a lot has happened! I will try to list the big things.

First, in May, my wonderful family took Eric and me on a Mediterranean cruise! We had so much fun on this once-in-a-lifetime trip and were able to see parts of Spain, Italy, Croatia, and France. We loved spending time with my family and were happy that the cruise was two weeks long, so we had a lengthy, relaxing vacation. I think my favorite parts were the food and Dubrovnik in Croatia, which is an incredibly gorgeous city.

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In July, we adopted a new family member, Rhea! She has been the sweetest puppy and is just so funny to watch. She is very lazy and walks around like she’s carrying too much weight. She’s been a great playmate for Samson and has quickly been catching up to him in size.

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For my 25th birthday, we were able to travel home and see some of our family. We had a wonderful time and we went with my family out to eat at Taste of Thai for my birthday and for Daddy’s birthday. Samson also celebrated his birthday (although I’ll get made fun of for actually celebrating his birthday and making a big deal out of it!) and so I made little doggy cupcakes for them (recipe found here). I was also able to see my best friend, Lauren, and her daughter, Evalee! I can’t believe how big little Ev is getting and I wish we had more time to spend with them each time we travel home. We were also able to see ERic’s family and spend time with our nephews and niece, which is always a blessing and so much fun!

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We have so much to look forward to here in the next couple months. We can’t wait to be home for the Holidays and spend time with friends and family. I will try to update this more often. We love and miss you all!

February 9, 2013

I can’t beleive how bad I have been at updating this! Our lives have been filled with so much between the last time I wrote and now and I’ll just hightlight the most exciting things.

First, we got a Yorkie! Eric surprised me by actaully offering to buy me one for Christmas. A family was trying to sell 3 dogs that were each 6 months old that they had not been able to sell previously. Eric came up with the idea one day and then picked up my new dog, Baylee, that night! She has been awful to housebreak, but she is a very sweet dog who loves to give kisses.

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We were able to come home for Christmas for almost 2 weeks! I LOVED being home for Christmas and spending time with family and seeing snow for the first time this season!

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The most exciting thing on our plates right now is that we are 6 days away from officially being homeowners! Our amazing realtor showed us a house that he was selling for a friend. We fell in love and ended up making an offer and getting a great deal on it. The closing process moved quickly and the closing day actually moved from February 20 to February 15! What a great Valentine’s Day gift to ourselves (there will definitely be no other Valentine’s Day purchases! Ha)! The Fitzgeralds were able to come and look at our house and Karin got some wonderful pictures for us.

ImageWe are SO excited but haven’t even started packing! Reality hasn’t set in that we will be moving in a week.

Other than that, our life is just routine by now! We are working like crazy and still trying to find fun things to do in Knoxville while we are here. We still love living in a somewhat larger city and even though we’re disappointed that we’ll be away from family a little while longer, we do love the city of Knoxville.

We hope all is well with everyone back home. We miss you all and please come visit now that we will have spare bedrooms! We would love to have anyone who wants to make that 5 hour trip!!

July 1, 2012

It’s been a while since I have blogged so I thought I should write a little something about the past couple months of our lives!

The biggest thing that has happend with us is that we moved! We said goodbye to our very first home together and moved into an apartment about a half a mile away in order to save some money. The one-bedroom apartment we’re living in now is a lot smaller but we still love it (we especially love the cheaper rent)! The move went smoothly since Eric’s brother, Todd, helped him move all the big things in – which we appreciated so much! We are now settled and even the animals are all settled into our new home.

We were able to go home for Emily’s graduation in June and had a wonderful time with our families. We were especially glad to get to see our niece & nephews – Eric was excited to meet Levi (Brian & Jenny’s newest addition) for the first time! And although we couldn’t stay for the whole thing, we were happy to be able to see Emily walk for graduation and receive her high school diploma.

Em’s Graduation Day!

The next week, Eric and I woke up to find that our cat, Guen, had had her kittens! There are five in all and we have had so much fun watching them and holding them. Their eyes opened this past week and they are so adorable! I’ll have to post a picture from my phone when I get them uploaded to my computer.

We were so excited when Eric’s sister, Stephanie, gave birth to a healthy baby boy on June 21. Judah is adorable and we can’t wait to be able to meet him. Hopefully during the holidays Steph & Drew will be home to visit and we will meet our newest nephew!

Baby Judah

Well, we are trying to make the best of these ridiculously hot days. We are glad for a practically deserted pool in our apartment complex! And our AC has been running like crazy. Samson isn’t the biggest fan of the heat either and you can find him sleeping on the tile for most of the day.

We are so excited for the month of July as it holds multiple weddings, small trips, and our anniversary! We are hoping to celebrate in Pigeon Forge at Dollywood’s Splash Country and maybe in a cabin up in the Smokies. And after that, the first week in August means our family vacation at the beach! So we are really looking forward to the next month or so.

We hope everyone is surviving the heat and that everyone back home has survived after the huge storm hit! You are all in our thoughts and prayers!

May 12, 2012

Since I last wrote, our lives have been very busy but we’ve enjoyed the past couple of months!

For Easter, my family came down to spend the weekend with us! I was so happy that they were able to come and we had a lot of fun with them. We did some sight-seeing, had a pic-nic, got to show them my church, do a big Easter meal, and dye eggs on Easter Sunday. I had so much fun and so appreciate them coming down to Knoxville since Eric and I weren’t able to go home!

The Sunsphere in Knoxville

Our pic-nic lunch on Saturday

All ready for church

A week or two after my family came to visit, Eric and I were able to travel home for a weekend! We had been antsy to visit home for a while and were so glad to be home for a few days. Eric got to meet his newest nephew (I had already met Levi when I had to come home to take a test) and we got to spend a lot of time with friends and family. We always appreciate that time so much! During this trip home, we decided to bring Samson. He traveled pretty well and had fun playing with his new friend, Ransom (the Fitzgerald’s dog).

Our traveling puppy!

Oh, did I mention that Samson is FINALLY housebroken?? He always did pretty well with going outside, but still had the occasional accident and wouldn’t beg up until about a month ago… now he has no accidents and begs every time he wants to go out! I just about sang the hallelujah chorous when he started begging.

Last weekend Eric and I attended a marriage retreat for members of our community group at church. The retreat was at a lodge in Pigeon Forge. The lodge was very nice and the view of the mountains was incredible! We had a lot of fun spending time with our small group and also with each other! We had different sessions that we sat through and also a “date day” where we went away from the lodge just to spend time with each other. Eric and I ended up at a Mexican restaurant and then we layed out in the sun for a while since it was such a beautiful day. It was a nice, relaxing weekend!

The view from Tanasi Lodge

This weekend we went mini golfing and to get frozen yogurt. There’s a new place in the mall that just opened up and the owner is a client of Eric’s boss, so we thought we would go support him on opening weekend. Eric is off at a concert now and I am spending some quality time with Samson! He currently is annoying me by begging to go out every 10 minutes.

Mini golf!

I hope everyone is having a wonderful weekend! We are enjoying the warmer weather but I am wishing it wasn’t so humid down here! I keep telling Eric we need to move north (New York?? Boston??) but I just can’t get him to agree 🙂

Until next time!

March 23, 2012

We have had a couple really fun weekends in a row and I just thought I’d share about some of our adventures! Not to mention that the spring weather is just motivating us to get out and actually DO some fun things! We are loving it.

Last weekend was packed but so much fun. Eric and I were honored to be able to go along with a group of people on a hike up the Smokies (the Chimney Tops hike) to watch one of our friends get engaged! The hike was about 2 miles and parts of it were very steep – I have to admit that I really underestimated how hard it would be and found myself dripping with sweat toward the end. Once at the top, though, the view was gorgeous. There were these huge rocks you could climb up to get even higher that we ended up climbing – I have never been more scared in my life when it was time to go back down the rocks. It was fun to do once, but I swore I’d never do it again!

Our friend’s (Nicole) fiance had a professional photographer lined up to hike up with us and then take some pictures of him proposing. He got some wonderful shots and I had to download a shot that he got of Eric and me on the way down the mountain.

Photo taken by Mile Marker Images

Photo taken by Mile Marker Images

The trip down was much more relaxed & enjoyable than the trip up!

The next day (Sunday) another friend (Ellen) was in town who is a photographer. Eric and I were never able to get engagement pictures done before our wedding, so we asked Ellen if she would do them now (although even though I call them “engagement pictures” they really aren’t, ha)! We had a lot of fun with her and she sent us 5 that she already has done – I am so happy with them, she is an incredible photographer! I’ll post one but when Ellen sends us a CD, we will put all of the pictures up on facebook and get some printed! I am so excited. Samson came along with us and even though he didn’t cooperate very well, Ellen managed to get some really good pictures of us with him.

Photo by Ellen Magnolia Photography

This weekend we have been able to spend some time outside and we got to go watch the movie The Hunger Games (a book turned into a movie). I read the book trilogy and LOVED them so we had to watch the movie. Eric really liked the movie so he has started (and almost finished) the book this weekend.

I started this new book called a “smashbook” which has become popular lately. It’s like a scrapbook but much messier and on-the-go. I LOVE it and have already finished a couple of the pages. I wish I had started this book right when we got married and I wish I had kept a lot of little pointless things to put in the book (it’s easy to paste receipts, brochures, pictures, movie ticket stubs, etc. in it) but starting now will still be just as fun. I would highly recommend it for anyone that likes scrapbooking but doesn’t have much time to do it! Here is my first page a little bit before it was complete.

My Smashbook!

Other than that, Eric and I have just been enjoying evening walks with Samson, watching Netflix, and reading. I am loving the spring weather although some of these days have just been a liiiittle bit too hot for me. That’s okay, though, because it’s nice to have some weather where I don’t have to layer on jackets just to take our dog out!

Hope all is well with everyone! We miss you all and can’t wait to come home next (although it may not be for Easter because Eric doesn’t get Good Friday off) :(. I leave you with a picture of our spoiled baby! 🙂 Have a wonderful end of the weekend!

March 4, 2012

Well, my mom reminded me that my last blog entry is getting a little bit old, so I thought I’d pull out my external hard drive to find some pictures to put in here and update this thing – finally!

I’ve been enjoying the winter months – although they haven’t actually felt like winter at all! Usually I enjoy cold weather, but I’ve gotten used to the temps being in the 60s and 70s and I think a 70 degree day might be the most perfect day. I’ve had fun going on walks with Samson, being outside to play with the kids at the daycare, and even the occasional park date with Eric & Sams.

We are still LOVING our little puppy – he is so much fun and has been doing really well with housebreaking, although he still won’t beg at the door. Eric’s mom sent us this bell kit that we hung up. Samson is supposed to ring the bell when he needs to go out. We’ve been trying to train him to use it, but he’s only used it a couple times (and I’m pretty sure they were accidents!)

Lazy Sams

In February Eric and I got to spend our first Valentine’s Day as a married couple and we really enjoyed celebrating! On the actual holiday, we both had work so we didn’t have much time to go out & celebrate, so I decided that on that day, we’d start a fun tradition – I decided that we should do acts of service for one another. I made Eric breakfast in bed (he has this new healthy pancake recipe that he loves) and he gave me a 15 minute massage! I think that tradition may be one that we keep! 🙂

The weekend after Valentine’s Day, we used some of our tax refund money to go shopping, buy gifts, and eat at our favorite restaurant. We were supposed to try a new place we’d heard about, but it’s hard to resist the Japanese Steakhouse that we ALWAYS go to. It was such a great weekend together and it went by way too fast!

My Valentine's Day gifts!

Last weekend I finally got a chance to go home. I got to hang out with my family and lots of my friends. It was so much fun and I was happy to hang out with Lauren & Evalee again, as well as Mike & Bia and Caitlin! It’s so nice being in a place where there are tons of friends to hang out with! 🙂

Little Evalee!

Other than that, we are just enjoying our time here and with each other. Samson, Guen, & Ghost keep us busy and entertained, I try and come up with a date night at least once a week (lately there has been breakfast for dinner night, game night, bowling, and some other fun ones), and we are still really enjoying Knoxville.

As much as we LOVE the city, Eric recently sent his resume to some connections he has at home to try and find a job – so we are praying that something might come up that would give us the chance to move home some day soon! We’ll see. We love and miss you all at home and hope to be closer.

Well, as spring approaches, I’m looking forward to more park dates, pic-nics, going to the sunsphere with Eric, going to a marriage retreat with our community group at church, trips home, and hopefully a vacation in the near future! I am also hoping to train for/run a 10k (I’m working up to a half marathon – SOMEDAY in the future!) so hopefully I will be motivated enough for that to happen! We hope everyone stays in touch and we hope to see you all at home soon!

– Jessica