January 29, 2008

Happy Anniversary to Us

Three years ago, on a perfect winter day, I married the love of my life. We had a beautiful ceremony in our church, filled with family and friends, new and old. One of my favorite parts was when my dear friend, Erica, sang the “Lord’s Prayer” a-capella from the balcony of the sanctuary after we recited our own vows. She has a beautiful and powerful voice and it filled the space and my heart.

We held a small reception at the church with everyone who attended the ceremony, and then later in the evening our family and closest friends joined us at a restaurant in Lincoln Park for dinner and dancing. It was all perfect.

Marriage is an amazing and curious thing. It is the best feeling to live life with your best friend and just when you think you know everything there is to know about them, you learn something new. I don’t love being married just because; I love being married because I get to be married to Jason.

So, Happy Anniversary to us!

P.S. Today is also my Uncle Pierre's 21st birthday....so, Happy Birthday to him!

January 27, 2008

Another Business Update

I thought I would share that in the past couple of weeks I have gotten my cards into three more stores and lined up three clients for wedding invitations. If you are keeping track, that means that I now have my cards in 5 stores and have 5 more to go to meet my goal of 10 by the end of winter!

I met with a bride-to-be this afternoon to discuss her wedding invitations, which I am very excited to report will feature the color green, one of my favorite colors! She is a hoot, this bride-to-be, and I feel very fortunate that as of yet, all of my brides have been such fun to work with!

I am looking to plan another card open house in the next several weeks and those are always so much fun because it is not very often that we have 10 or so people in our house at one time. Another reason why I love card open houses.......I get to bake! Yummmmmmmmmy!

If you would like to host a card party at your home, give me a call. As a thank you for hosting, I'll give you a "thank you" gift and 10% of the total sales from your party in free cards/note card sets. I know a card party sounds a little weird, but trust me, people love coming to them because 1) they need to buy cards somewhere 2) they get to socialize and 3) they get to eat yummy treats!

January 25, 2008

All By Myself

Jason is in Minnesota for a little over 24 hours for Alumni Council meetings at Northwestern- I took him to the airport at 11:30 this morning and will pick him up tomorrow night. It’s a short trip, but I just hate it when we’re apart. I know, I know……you want to gag!

So I’m living the wild life of a bachelorette until tomorrow night. So far today I got a latte at Starbucks; visited a new store and sold some cards; priced all of my cards using my new pricing system; and did some inventory paperwork. Tonight, my mom is picking me up and we are going to take out Taylor, my 8 year-old niece for a bit. As for tomorrow, well, I’m not quite sure what I am going to do, but it will involve doing some laundry and prepping for a meeting I have on Sunday with a new client.

Ah yes, I am one wild and crazy house wife!

January 23, 2008

Our Home

I thought it would be fun to post some pictures of our place, especially since some of you have not had the chance to come out and see it.

Here is our bedroom- we tried to make it calm and soothing to the senses.

This particular piece Jason commissioned from our friend, Melissa, as a wedding present to me. The night of our wedding, I walked into what had become “our place” and there it was hanging on the wall. It is a rendering of he and I embracing.

This is our living/dining room. The art pieces on the walls were done by local artists- we are big fans of original art here at the Pucker house.

See those green boxes? Those are the boxes I keep some of my cards in. We would like to get a larger piece of furniture to go on the wall where the skinny console is because it needs a more substantial piece of funriture. Ah yes, there are always things we want!

The small chair against the wall belonged to Grandma and Grandpa Palm (Jason’s maternal grandparents); we had it reupholstered because the turquoise color it was originally did not exactly go with the rest of what we had going on in this room. And my orange Wellies each have an orange chair to sit on when they are not on my feet!

We purchased everything in this room, expect for the dining table; that came from my mom. It is the table I grew up with- my dad designed it and had it custom built out of butcher block in the 70’s.

Here is the kitchen- where all the magic happens!

This is where I beat my head against the stainless steel countertops trying to figure out what to make for dinner because (surprise, surprise) I’ve only a sweet potato, some pea pods, and a half eaten can of soup to offer tonight to my famished husband! Ah yes, the kitchen, where determined (and sometimes hesitant) chef meets semi-stocked refrigerator and cupboards. Some of my most famous creations have been homemade mac n’ cheese; herbed turkey burgers; “fancy” salad (field greens, goat cheese, dried cranberries, pears, and walnuts with olive oil and balsamic vinegar drizzled on top); and anything that is baked, like chocolate chip cookies, brownies and carrot cake- all from scratch, of course!

And this is our den, the room I wrote about a few blogs ago because it is our favorite place to be.

The couch was purchased by Jason when he was a swingin’ bachelor; it was his first major purchase upon moving to Chicago. That is where I spend most of my time on my computer. See the storage trunk? That’s where half of my business supplies are kept- I like to call it my business center.

That's Jason's desk- it does not always look that neat. Sorry honey, but I have to be honest!

I hope you enjoyed the tour!

It's Been A While, I Know

The primary reason I chose to begin this blog is because I want to become more reflective and less reactive. In other words, I want to spend more time reflecting on the people I love and the things I am learning and less time simply reacting to what gets thrown in my lap each day. I have tried to journal many times in the past, but it never seemed to stick. I’m not sure how long I’ll keep up this blog either, but for now, it’s my preferred way to journal. And lucky you- you get to read it!

So here are a few things that have popped up in my mind recently:

· I have often wondered what it must feel like to be a mom: to carry a life inside of you; to meet your child for the first time after they take their first breath; to learn a new way of living when they come home from the hospital with you; to wonder; to worry; to be so in love with someone you just met; to see a sweet little baby transition into a curious toddler, an eager student, and then into a young adult. But the part I most wonder about is what does it feel like to sit across the table from the person you gave life to, watching them as they turn off their cell phone and put it away, order something off the menu, and listen to them talk about taking their car into the shop and needing to go grocery shopping. Does the wonderment and excitement for this sweet-little-baby-turned-adult stay with you all those years? Or do your children become just other human beings you share the earth with and you lose that wonderment?

· Where should I be looking for a part-time job? I am going to look for a part-time job to start in March and I am not sure what I should do. Today, I am leaning towards something in the area of event planning. I am most comfortable calling the shots (no surprise there!) and do like the fast-paced and challenging experiences that even planning brings. Hmmmmm….any ideas?

· Community. That is such a buzz word these days. We talked a lot about community when I was at Trinity- always looking for ways to foster community for the students. And we talk about community a lot at church- always looking for ways to foster community for those who attend our church. But I have always wanted to follow the declaration of “We need to build community” with “But for the sake of what? Community for the sake of what?” Meaningful community- community the way God intended it to be- cannot be merely for the sake of having people around to do social activities with or form groups with. Community is meant to build up the body of Christ, so it cannot always be “fun” or comfortable, but rather, should stretch us and provide opportunities for us to speak Truth into one another’s lives and to have Truth spoken into our lives. Community for the sake of building God’s kingdom and community for the sake of knowing Truth and living it out- that’s the kind of community I long for.

January 12, 2008

Business Update

I am excited to report that I have meetings to show my cards to four more stores in Chicago! Two are baby boutiques and one is a specialty gift shop- looks like my promo packets that I mailed out several weeks ago are now reaping some benefits. I'll keep you posted if they agree to sell my cards.

In the mean time, I just sent out more promo packets to stores in Lake Geneva and another one in Fond du Lac, and am still scouting out shops in Chicago and may be looking at Door County next. I have set a lofty goal for myself to get 10 stores selling my cards by the end of winter. So far I have two currently selling my cards, four meetings to show my cards, and am waiting to hear back from 7 other stores to see if I can get a meeting.

If you know of a business near you that you think would be a good place for me to sell my cards, please let me know....I'd love to send a "thank you" gift to you if your suggestion becomes my next client!

January 5, 2008

Boots and Bread

I am now the proud owner of a pair of Hunter Wellies (www.hunterboots.com)- the same boots worn by the Royal Family when they go hunting and galavanting in the English hills. I received my Pumpkin Wellies in the mail on Thursday and immediately put them on and took them out to dinner- Jason came, too. Aren’t they great? Gosh, I love my orange Wellies!

And today I ate the last piece of the most delicious whole wheat bread that Gabe (Naomi’s younger sister) baked and sent with Naomi from North Dakota. Ever since last Saturday, I have been enjoying a slice drizzled with honey each morning, so it is with culinary sadness that I post this picture of the last slice of the award-winning bread that Gabe made for us.

Thanks for the bread Gabe! I sure do wish I could pick up another loaf at my local grocer’s….perhaps you should begin on-line ordering!

January 4, 2008

Feeling Sad Today

Our dear friend Naomi went back to North Dakota yesterday and ever since I dropped her off at the train station I have been feeling sad. It was so nice to have her here and it is so sad to not have her here anymore. But as Grandma always says, "You have to leave in order to come back." While those words are little consolation for the gloominess of an empty den, it's nice to know that someday (hopefully soon!) we will see each other again.

Here are some pictures that Naomi took on her new camera and sent to me from her time here in Chicago.

We went shopping one afternoon and Jason and Naomi looked for shoes

I baked cookies and Nome took this very artisitic photo of them cooling off

Naomi took some pictures off our living/dining room- isn't she good at taking pictures?

Here is a picture of Jason and then me and Naomi after our last dinner on the eve before Nome's departure

Jason took this picture of Naomi and I outside in a winter snowfall- do you think we look like sisters?
We had a great time with you, Nome! Come back soon....or we'll see you somewhere between here and NoDakia!