Tuesday, May 28, 2013


On Thursday, May 23, Charles and I decided to go to Sol Azteca for dinner.  If you've never been there, you need to know this (1) you should go, (2) you will eat a lot, and (3) it's the Charles/Caroline date night staple. Ever since the spring semester ended I'd been talking about going to Sibyl Temple or Vestavia Hills Baptist Church to watch the sun set.  We were quickly running out of days to go, so Thursday night was the perfect opportunity.  Plus, the weather was perfect.

We talked for a bit, and Charles gave me a letter.  It didn't say anything particularly out of the ordinary (100 miles apart = lots of letter opportunities), but it was labeled #1.  After a while, Charles asked me if I wanted the second letter.  {this is getting fishy - why write 2 letters when you can write one 1 longer one?}  Letter #2 was a copy of his job offer.  This is really exciting -- awe what a cute way for Charles to surprise me with such great news!

He wasn't finished with surprises.

Then Charles kept talking {sorry, blog-world, you don't get those details}, knelt on one knee, and asked me to marry him.  Very classic.  Oh, and I said yes.  Obviously.  And Charles explained all of the details behind the proposal.

Then things got weird.  I couldn't talk.  I don't remember exactly what came over me, but I definitely wasn't acting like myself.  Ex: when I was putting my stuff back in Charles's truck, I asked him if he had any soap.  And I kept repeating phrases like "you're crazy."  I was just so surprised that I really couldn't believe it had actually happened.  Thankfully I returned back to my normal self after about 30 minutes.  I can honestly say I've never been that speechless.  Happy -- but very speechless.

I also owe a big thank you to CW Newell for capturing on film what I can't really remember.  Haha.  And also a thank you also to Charles for the ring he gave me when he popped the question.

I really can't imagine Charles's scheming up a more perfect night.  I wish I could find words to describe how blessed I am.  I don't think any exist.

apparently I need a lesson in posing my hand

Saturday, May 25, 2013

Graduation, Moving, and Celebrations

First, if you haven't read Caroline's comprehensive post about college, go read it now. It may have been the best post on this little blog ever. I laughed, I cried... Okay, maybe I didn't cry, but I am starting to get emotional about not living with her next year. But really, just read it.
So, here's what's happened in the whirlwind of the last few weeks…
Graduated college

Moved all of our stuff to Arkansas in a 24-foot truck

And had our last two wedding parties before the wedding week!

Stay posted because exciting things are always happening around here!!

Thursday, May 9, 2013

College in One Post

Get ready for my most comprehensive list to date.  

Behold, highlights from my entire college experience in one {long} list.  

There really was no way to include all of my favorite memories, especially since I didn't have a very good camera (aka - I never took pictures) for my first year and a half of college.  But I have done my best.

August 2009

1.  Bid Day -- At the time, I wasn't too sold on the whole sorority thing.  Sometimes I'm still not, but I'm so very thankful for the many wonderful friends I made through AOII.

September 2009

2.  Concerts -- The above picture was taken when Charles picked me up for our very first concert together, Relient K in Atlanta.  Since then, we've gone to 20+ concerts together. 

October 2009

3.  The 2009 Auburn football season -- My first season as a student.  My family bought a mini season of tickets, but only made a few games since Julianne was still receiving treatments.  Sitting with Alex at the West Virginia game in the POURING rain will always be one of my favorite football memories.

4.  Living in Auburn -- Although sights such as the one above aren't exactly regular, they're not surprising either.  I definitely never saw a tractor at a traffic light in Vestavia.

Spring 2010

5.  Macie Champion -- Pictured is one of Macie's impeccable parking jobs.  She's very efficient, utilizing every inch of space.  I met Macie in a Bible study/ intro to Chemical Engineering class, and she's one of the reasons I survived freshman year.  From lunch at Lupton and our Naruto dates to bonding over long distance and distaste for the college lifestyle, I'm so thankful for my kindred spirit.

Shades DNow, January 2010

6.  Working DNows -- I worked at at least 7 church-related weekend retreats.  I'm thankful for the opportunity to serve in an area that so much shaped who I am.

February 2010

7.  Auburn snow -- See photo above.

8.  Double dates with Alex and Kevin -- We've been on too many to count!  I'm definitely going to miss hanging out with these two all the time.  Also, a large portion of our double dates were really me just 3rd wheeling.  But those were just as fun!

Spring 2010 -- our first double date

December  2010 -- obligatory awkward picture

9.  Family vacation to NYC -- Broadway shows can't be beat.

Summer 2010

10.  Braves game -- The day before classes started sophomore year.  My first time to a Braves game since I was little.

August 2010

11.  Going to Bama games -- I'll be the first Auburn fan to admit that Bama games are fun, too!  The game day atmospheres are pretty similar, but tailgating on Bama's quad is insanely picturesque.  The picture below is from a day with THE most unexpectedly perfect football weather -- the first weekend in September, brilliant sunshine, no humidity, and a high of 70ish.  

September 2010

12.  The 2010 Auburn football season -- Obviously.  This picture is from the Arkansas game.  Charles and I sat with my parents, and got to witness all the touchdowns up close!  (65-43, in case you don't remember)  This season, I watched the BCS polls come out on Sunday nights on our terrible dorm couch with Alex and sat with Kevin for nearly every home game.

October 2010

13.  Meeting (aka posing for a picture) with Justin Bieber -- I can't decide if I'm embarrassed that this picture made the list.  But he's definitely the most famous person I've been photographed with.

December 2010

14.  The Arizona trip -- Alex and I, along with our dads (separate dads, our dads aren't together -- just to clarify), flew to Arizona for the National Championship game.  We were so close to the Grand Canyon, we couldn't help but swing by.  I would LOVE to hike through the canyon one day.  The month we went, the canyon was experiencing record lows.  Thankfully, we didn't let Daddy convince us to try to hike down into it.  I'm not sure we would have made it out alive.  This trip was definitely the highlight of sophomore year.  (PS - Auburn won)

January 2011

January 2011

Selfie-alert: Daddy and I just moments after Auburn secured the win for the National Championship!

January 2011

15.  Cheaha -- Alabama's highest point is in Cheaha State Park.  Charles and I took a quick day trip on a random Saturday.  I love hiking, and the gorgeous views weren't too bad either!

April 2011

16.  Getting Teddy -- While Julianne was on treatment, she requested a puppy.  Over a year later, we got one!  Teddy is sometimes wary of strangers, but he is one of the most affectionate dogs you will ever meet.  He's pretty cute, too.

April 2011

December 2011

17.  Orlando trip -- For Julianne's Magic Moments trip she requested Disney World.  We hadn't been to Disney as a family since 2004, so the trip was a fun treat!  I will admit Space Mountain is a lot more uncomfortable at 20 than at 14.

May 2011

18.  I got an iPhone. --  The picture below is one of the very first I ever took on my iPhone.

June 2011

19.  Random outings around Auburn -- This is Alex singing with Elvis.  At a put-put place in Opelika.  A really poorly made, indoor, tacky put-put place.  Clearly, we made the most of the situation.

Fall 2011

20.  Lofted beds -- For Magnolia Hall, round 2 (junior year), Alex and I both lofted our beds.  I also built my shelving complex under my bed, which was quite a feat to assemble.  This was by far my favorite desk-setup I had during college.  I was a little afraid I would get annoyed with sleeping so high, but we both never regretted the decision.

20.  Ross Hall --  This lovely little building housed all of my Chemical Engineering classes.  Starting junior year, nearly all my classes were in Ross.  I spent SO MUCH time in that building.

21.  Aarika Boggs -- Although this picture was taken at graduation, now is an appropriate time to mention Aarika.  We technically met on bid day (she was an AOII, too), but became friends in Engineering Physics 1 our second semester at Auburn.  After that, we scheduled all of our classes together.  She is one of the smartest people I know, and one of the big reasons I survived Chem E.

May 2013

22.  Socials -- Actually, I went to very few socials, but I'm just lumping them together with hanging out with the girls in general.  So thankful for my sweet group of friends.

September 2011

23.  More Bama football games -- I think I've already covered this topic thoroughly enough.  Enjoy the awkward picture.

September 2011

24.  Ben Rector concerts -- I think I've seen Ben Rector 9 times now, so... yeah I'm a big fan of his.  This picture was taken the night David Gray got towed from Workplay. While he found his car, everyone else sat around for so long all of the musicians had gone home.  That did leave time for a photo-op with Ben!

September 2011

25.  The 2011 Auburn football season --  Not nearly as exciting after the 2010 season.  Charles and I did sit together at the Iron Bowl in the Auburn student section.  I wasn't very popular for bringing in a bama fan, but we both had fun.

November 2011

26.  Living with Alex -- I really can't imagine what Auburn would have been like if I hadn't lived with Alex.  Basically, if I was doing something fun at any point over my four years at AU, I was most likely with Alex {and usually Kevin, too}.  Alex inspired me to make more crafts and to buy a DSLR camera.  Big shout out for patiently putting up with me for the last 3 years!  

December 2011

27.  Running into friends at concerts -- I think I've established that I go to concerts often, but going with friends is even better!  Kelsey and Rachel are two of my concert-loving friends; this picture was taken at a Dave Barnes concert last May.

April 2012

28.  Talladega Superspeedway -- Mr. Phillips got a handful of free tickets to the race last May, and Charles and I invited anyone and everyone who would go.  It turned out to be SO much fun.  Definitely a cultural experience.  Nothing like being covered in rubber shreds!

May 2012

29.  When Charles and I got our picture made with a crawfish -- This picture is right up there with Justin Bieber.  Kidding.  We went to the crawfish boil (an outdoor concert in downtown Bham) last May and snagged this silly photo.  

May 2012

30.  Hiking at Oak Mtn -- I already mentioned that I love hiking.  Oak Mtn is so close to home, and I don't go there enough.

June 2012

31.  Austria -- See my 25 blog posts on Europe to see a full recap.  If you ever get a chance to hike in the Alps, do it.

July 2012

32.  Pi Chi -- Instead of "regular" rush, I got to lead a group of freshmen through the recruitment process.  Despite moving into a hotel 36 hours after returning from Europe, being a Pi Chi was even more fun than I anticipated.

August 2012

33.  Road trips with Alex and Liz -- This picture is from the weekend we went to Atlanta for the Clemson game.  Aka when we thought Auburn's football team would be decent.   

September 2012

34.  When Kevin proposed to Alex -- I'm not sure I've ever been this happy/ excited.  Also, filming your friends' engagement from behind a trashcan is very romantic.

September 2012

35.  Alex's candlelight -- see #34.  I love surprises!

September 2012

36.  The 2012 Auburn football season -- Actually, this season was pretty terrible.  But my family had a tailgate setup for the first time, so I actually tailgated!  Hooray for something new!  #wareagleanyway

September 2012

September 2012

37.  Fall formals -- I actually didn't go to many formals.  But they were fun when I did!  Kevin and Charles had a little trouble with their jackets at the formal pictured below; thankfully, we got all of that mess sorted out.

September 2012

38.  Having friends visit Birmingham -- Liz stayed with me the weekend of Alex and Kevin's engagement party.  We blared a LOT of Les Miz music that weekend.

December 2012

39.  Alex & Kevin's parties -- It's like getting to go to a birthday party 6 times in one year!

February 2013

40.  The camping trip -- After talking about camping for almost two years, Alex, Kevin, and I picked out a weekend in November to go camping in February.  It actually happened!  We packed 2.5 girls in the tent pictured below.  (Kali slept half the night in the car.)

February 2013

41.   Spring Break 2013: The cruise -- The whole trip was just so much fun.  Liz discovered she really loves roll away beds; Kevin forced us to eat Hibachi; and I ate meals consisting of only fried food.

March 2013

42.  Spring formal -- This year was AOII's "Red Rose Ball" where all of us girls were to wear white dresses.  I've always thought it was kind of funny that guys always matched (tuxes) but girls didn't (can wear all styles of dresses), but this formal made everyone match!

April 2013

43.  The final roll -- After the A-Day game, Auburn closed off downtown to traffic, and held one final rolling of the Toomer's trees before they were removed.  The trees looked terrible, and I personally think they should have been removed about a year ago.  But no one asked me.

April 2013

44.  Living with Liz Conn -- Liz lived with me and Alex for our senior year, and she was such a fun addition to our living arrangements.  Liz kept me up to date with all things politics, even inspiring me to make CNN my homepage.  She also graduated with a double major AND a 4.0 -- so she's basically brilliant.

May 2013

45.  Graduation -- The whole concept of walking across the stage is very odd to me.  I didn't even get my diploma.  I guess the ceremony is more for closure than anything else.

May 2013

That's it!

I would like to say "I can't believe I'm a college graduate," but I can.  Hopefully, reading this post didn't take you 4 years like my degree took me.