U.S. History….The Constitution State.

As promised in my last post, I have some fun pictures to share of our evening with the Ericson family. Mr. Ericson (who I have been instructed to call Geof, but does anyone else find it really hard calling your former teachers by their first names?) taught me sophomore history which was U.S. History. For anyone that knows me, I really enjoy learning history, but I am really not that great at retaining it. Like I admitted to Mr. Ericson, really the only thing I remember is that Connecticut is the Constitution State.

I have tried to keep up with the teachers from my high school years that made a difference in my life, and Mr. Ericson and his wife are definitely some of those people. As a high schooler, and let’s face it, still to this day, I was a suck-up….or maybe rather, I just like helping people. I think it’s the latter, but those around me in highschool would definitely disagree. 🙂 Anyway, I would always alphabetize all of the test and quizzes for Mr. Ericson because I knew it would make life easier come time to enter grades (and it might be remembered when I finished the semester with an 89.4 or something like that). Or before mock trial practice would start (which was held in his classroom), I would enter grades into the computer. He jokingly referred to me as his secretary, and even the card his family gave me at our wedding indicated his sadness about losing his secretary to Jon.

As you can see from the pictures, it’s been a long time since I had Mr. Ericson as a teacher simply because there have been three additions to his family since I was in his class. We try to be creative when we get together with them, because I know taking kids to a restaurant can be difficult and stressful for the parents and boring for the kids, so we do fun things. One time we all went to Chuck E Cheeses, or another, we took dinner to their house and had some fun games of fooseball. This time we brought pizza to a park and played and then went to Brewsters for ice cream. Jon and their oldest son started throwing acorns at each other, and Ginger (the mom) quickly joined in. Their only daughter would collect “ammunition” for everyone, and she wasn’t really partial to either side when distributing that ammunition. I think the funniest part though was when Jon accidentally pelted some random girl with an acorn intended for their oldest son. OOPS. 🙂 The poor literally had no clue what hit her.

 

The youngest was content just chilling around. He had the greatest smile (well, all of them have super precious smiles). I love watching Jon interact with kids because sometimes I forget how great he is with them. Even that night, I was a bit worried Jon would feel like I was dragging him along or that I was going to have to encourage him to get involved with the kiddos, but he jumped right in and I think had a great time! He even took some time to swing with the youngest son. Although, that may have just been because he was tired, but either way, I really enjoyed getting to see the Ericsons and spend some time with them. I was extremely blessed that my dad made the decision to move to SC way back when so that I could go to Bob Jones. I know many have their opinions about the school, but there are truly people there that care about you. As with any institution, there are going to be “bad apples,” but thankfully, I didn’t run into any of them. I was left with great memories of many of my teachers, and I look forward to each interaction with them.

Well, I know many of you are looking for an update on the Europe trip. I will be working to organize the pictures and write-up some entries from my journal. I’ll share this little secret, IT WAS AMAZING!

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Falling behind….

I’m falling behind! I figure getting the memories down right now is more important than the pictures, but I PROMISE I will get back to the pictures. I do have a lot of great ones.

This week was a bit busy since I was in Atlanta for a few days, but the weekend was packed with many activities. Friday night we had all of the families over from the Bible Study that I host at our house. We had an ice cream social on the patio, and the kids got to play in the sprinkler. They were soaked, but had a great time, and I do believe that everyone enjoyed ice cream. Jon and I supplied the ice cream and everyone else brought the toppings. My chocolate ice cream with oreos, hot fudge, and gummy bears was delicious in case you were wondering. 🙂 The dogs even had a great time. The kids kept them on their toes, and they got a lot of exercise in.

Saturday morning, Jon had signed us up to serve for United Way. Originally, it was supposed to be a mile from the house and we were supposed to be gardening. If I were to be honest, I would have to tell you that I wasn’t really that interested in serving on a Saturday morning by weeding someone else’s garden when my own beds need to be weeded, but I begrudgingly went. Turns out the event was 25 miles from our house, and we would be gleaning. Yes, gleaning…like Ruth did. It was actually pretty awesome. We gleaned zucchini and squash that would be donated to local charities. In a little over an hour, we collected 1,000 pounds of vegetables that were donated to places like the Greer Soup Kitchen, Greenville Rescue Mission, Miracle Hill Children’s Home, and Shepherd’s Gate women’s shelter.

We attended a wedding of a girl that I used to play soccer with which was pretty fun. I always love weddings, because assuming it’s a Christian wedding, I take the charge to the bride and groom as a reminder for Jon and me. Satruday evening brought some much needed rest and relaxation with my awesome husband. He surprised me by making crab dip from scratch with no recipe. It was SO good.

Sunday was relatively normal with church, small group and of course, our spaghetti lunch. I left to go to Switcharoos which is a big children’s consignment sale. As usual, I had so much fun and got lots of great deals! I can’t wait to send the stuff off to the respective parents. I think buying the stuff is probably more fun than them getting it. Not sure if that’s fair to them or not, but it makes me happy. 🙂

I promise to get some pictures up this week from the last two. I know you must be faithful readers to read with no pictures. It will get better!

HOLD FAST….it’s coming

Due to the amazing ladies retreat I was on this weekend, our weekly update will be a day late. Please come back tomorrow for a full-write up on the Sutters of the south and to hear a bit about the wonderful and tiring weekend.

To wet your appetite, here’s a picture of Jon after work one day last week.

Happy 4th of July!!!

Wow, this week was busy. At first, I didn’t think it was too busy, but we crammed it full of a lot of stuff. Some fun, some not so fun. To start, I cleaned the garage…that fell in the not so fun, but it was such a big project that I took a picture. In case you can’t tell, the before pictures are on the left, and the after pictures are on the right. I’m pretty happy with the results. I think my dad would be too since the OCD of it reminds me of how he kept track of things. I still consider it an accomplishment that we can park in the garage after four years. Praying that it continues.

On Tuesday, my work took us to a baseball game as our firm Summer Celebration. Each year, we get together with our Charlotte office to have a fun activity. Due to some people dropping out, we had extra tickets, so I got to bring my nephew. He was SO good, and we had a blast. My favorite part was while trying to park. It was far busier than I had anticipated, and I did not want to pay for parking, so while I was on the hunt for free parking, Ethan pipes up from the back and says, “Aunt Ashleigh, I hate to break it to you, but I don’t like to walk very far.” Poor kid. Aunt Ashleigh disappointed him, and we had to walk a ways to get to the park, but he was so cute when he said it that I later rewarded him with some Chick-fil-A ice cream. He also was sweet enough to get his sister a ball and a cookie even though she couldn’t join us.

This weekend, Jon and I spent a lot of time together which has been MARVELOUS, especially since his travel schedule at work has picked up a bit, and mine is about to get a bit crazy over the next couple of months…like two trips to Piscataway, NJ…what?  So excited though since I will get to meet my new niece and see some family. The joke at Jon’s work is that his travel has begun to increase….back to Greenville (i.e. he has been spending most of his time in Atlanta). Thankfully, it has not been as bad as this past spring or even last summer, so I’m holding out hope for a slow summer.

Anyway, on Friday, my girlfriend was having her studio’s grand opening, so Jon and I headed downtown for dinner and to see her studio. We had a marvelous time, and of course I took pictures of our food. We have been getting some amazing coupons lately, so we were pretty proud to say that our entire meal was only $14 for a pretty fancy restaurant. My mom’s church was also hosting a patriotic concert, and she was running the first aid station, so we stopped by and Jon pretended to be some injured old person. She offered him ice cream…I like that kind of nurse’s station. 🙂

Date night continued on Saturday, but this time it was at home. Jon put on the works. I had TWO appetizers and some amazing supper. He even set the table up by the firepit which was pretty awesome. He tried this new recipe for grilling corn which was amazing. A little cilantro mix made them so delicious. How would it be 4th of July without grilling out too? I didn’t get any pictures of it, but we had our neighbors over this evening for a great time of fellowship and of course hamburgers and potato salad. We hope to take my mom and the girls hiking tomorrow at Dupont State Park. It has some pretty incredible waterfalls, so here’s to hoping that I’ll be here next week to update you on our lives….that is assuming you’re here….

Hiatus ended…hopefully.

Yes, I have had a long hiatus on writing, but I will hopefully get better. My sister-in-law is so good about updating their blog weekly, and I am hoping to get in the same routine. I won’t bore you with too many details because I’m sure many of my readers don’t particularly care what I ate for breakfast (cereal sample that I received at Old Navy). Since I have been gone so long, I will also not try to catch you up. Rather, since I hope we are friends, I will do what I would do if I saw you…pick up as if we never were apart.

Last week was the week of all weeks. Our family from PA came to visit to celebrate three graduations, Mother’s Day, and a Sweet Sixteen. Jon’s sister graduated with her doctorate, Jon’s brother (and our housemate) with his undergraduate degree, and me with my masters. I loved how our house was bursting at the seams at meals and how we had family all around to celebrate. I have never cooked for that many people, so the weeks leading up to the visit and the weekend was an eye-opening experience. We were all very anxious and excited to hear of the arrival of another baby in our family. Colette Elisse Sutter was born on Friday to Sam & Ashley in NY. She is perfect, and we love looking at pictures of her. I’m hoping to visit with her when I go to NJ for a business trip in July.

This week is a return to normalcy for us…I still am not entirely sure what that word means. I started summer school on Monday which has definitely been a major challenge for me. I didn’t rest much on the weekend, so the new work/school schedule has really taken its toll. I’m hoping to catch up on rest this weekend and get my mid-term and mid-term paper completed…wishful thinking? I’m trying to keep my eyes on the prize….the Outer Banks in 23 days. I’m so excited to get to spend some quality time with my husband and family…my sister from Virginia is even coming!

Sorry there are no pictures on this post…I don’t have any pictures on my work computer anymore now that we have a snazzy home computer (so thankful for that)! Hopefully, in the weeks to come as I develop a system to my posts, I will be able to include pictures from the past week. Well, I don’t want to push it. Getting you back to reading my posts is an accomplishment in it of itself, come visit each Monday and see if there is something else happening in our exiting lives. J

Long time no see!

It has been far too long since I have had a blog update. Life just seems to get busier. Something will end, and I will say “life will slow down now.”  That has NOT been the case! For the last three weeks, Jon or I have been in Atlanta, GA for work. While that may sound glamorous, it’s not. I miss Jon, I miss my pups, and I miss my home. I will go home for one week…which we will actually leave TOGETHER and go on vacation. When we return, I will go to Atlanta again for two days, then we will be together for 15 days, and then Jon will return to Atlanta for three straight weeks. Thankfully, he gets to come home on the weekends, but it’s still a long-time apart. While I’m not supposed to envy anything, I envy the day when we don’t have jobs that keep us apart so often or when I could accompany him on his trips.

Since our last post, we expanded the Sutter family, added a CPA, and began a house project. We brought Mocha Sutter home at the end of May. She’s a chocolate Lab, a wondferul sister to Lexi, and a warm spot in our heart. I can’t wait to see her this evening when I get home! I will have to wait to post a picture until I get home since I had to remove all pictures from my computer. I FINALLY got my CPA certification. I learned back in December that I had passed the last section, but I still had some classes to take and some red tape to cut through. I still have two classes to complete for my Master of Accountancy degree, but all-in-all, things are moving along. And finally, we are in the midst of a crazy patio project. Jon got the urge (that’s right, it wasn’t even my idea or urging) to build a patio out of paver stone at the bottom of our steps in the backyard. The patio will allow us to get a fire pit, move our grill off our screened porch, and have some more areas to relax in. Since temps are in the 100’s, work hasn’t been moving very quickly, but we hope to have it completed before our son comes home (that’s Joe for those who don’t know). 😉

Well, I must sign off. I need to pack up my hotel room and get ready to conquer another day. I can’t wait to see Jon. This week has been long. Made longer by being sick, but somehow seeing him makes all of that melt into a memory.

Newlywed

I feel like a newlywed again. My reason will be a silly one to you, but while playing the card game Spoons with a couple of our friends, I must have gotten too excited. I hit my wedding band on the table two times. I didn’t think anything of it, but the next morning in church, I noticed that my rings had separated (they were soldered together). Now it’s back to the days where I played with my rings all of the time. Each time I would touch them, I would think of Jon, wonder how his day was going, and take a minute to thank God for giving me a man such as him. The wedding band and engagement ring are such small pieces, but they stand for so much more. I look forward to getting them put back together more for peace of mind than anything, but it was a sweet reminder of lovestruck days of yesteryear.

That’s not to say we’re not madly in love, but now days, after being together 5 years and being married 2.5, small things get me excited and little things remind me we are still in love just as we were that cold evening in February back in 2005. When I say little, I mean they may be unimportant to you, the reader, but to me they mean the world. A small example, Jon and I both had to travel this week for work. He was headed to Columbia, SC, and I was headed to Gastonia, NC. He had to leave at 6:30ish in order to pick up his co-worker on time. I, thankfully, was able to sleep an extra 30 minutes. The rain was coming down hard when I left, and as I pulled out, I thought to myself, I really need to get my wipers replaced. As I started to leave our subdivision, I noticed the water rolling off the windshield without any assistance from my wipers. My sweet husband (in his dress clothes) had gone down early to put RainX on my windows…something I would have never thought to ask or do prior to leaving. So, as I said, it’s the small sweet acts of love that make my days, and I wouldn’t trade them for anything.

Busy season has passed the halfway point. Jon’s may go a bit longer than mine due to his clientele, but we are halfway through mine, and I am very excited…and tired.  😉 I have two weeks left of the class I’m currently taking, then there will be a one week break before I start up again, and I will be in classes either at BJU or Liberty for the next 12+ weeks.  This weekend we got a wonderful taste of spring, and I can’t wait to get out and enjoy God’s creation. It was perfect timing too. My sisters and mom had bought me a patio set for my birthday. It was delivered on Saturday, so I put it together and did my homework out there on Sunday. How beautiful! Until next time. I must get out for my evening run….the hotel room seems to get smaller if I stay in here too long, and of course, after that more work calls.