Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Our Story Part 3: Engaged

If you haven't read the previous posts on how we met or when we dated you can find those here:
We Met
We Dated

September 9, 2012 Kyle and I were headed to the first Tennessee Titans home game of the season vs the New England Patriots. It started out as a normal day and this game, unlike most, we made good time on the road so we could tailgate. As we neared the exit to the stadium we ran into the game day traffic. I could tell Kyle was starting to getting antsy as there was no ease or gracefulness to his gas and break peddle. Several times I thought we were going to rear end the car in front of us or be rear ended. Naturally I start nagging due to the anxiety attack that was about to take over me head on.

Finally we got to the game. Before we got out Kyle asked, "can we have a serious conversation?" With this I knew I was about to be lectured on "don't drink too much", "behave yourself", etc.

Me, "no because I know what you're going to say"
Kyle, "oh do you now?"
Me (in a mimicking voice) "don't drink too much...behave..."
Kyle, "well that's not exactly it but yeah that too..."
Me, "okay proceed..."
Kyle, "you know this was this same place we had our first date so I thought this would be the best place to ask you, will you marry me?"

Out of no where I look down and see him holding this shiny diamond ring, all I could think was "when did he get this out of his pocket?"

Of course I said yes and in the midst of the "oh my gosh", "how long have you been planning this", "are you sure" etc. I finally stopped in my ohh's and aww's and looked at him and asked,

"Wait...did you ask for my dads permission?"
Kyle, "of course!"

I then proceeded with the ooh's and aww's. I called my mom and told her and she was overwhelmed with happiness. She told me she knew he was going to ask because Kyle had come over to her house and with his face white as a ghost asked if he could speak to my dad alone.

I called and told my sister and after we got off the phone I realized oh my gosh, it's her birthday and I didn't even wish her to have a happy one...she still jokes with me about that.

Later in the stadium we told all of our friends that sit in our section and everyone was so happy for us. One of my friends and I headed out to the concessions and while standing there none other than the real Hayden Penettierre walked past us. My friend yelled out "Hayden!" And she turned around and walked over to us. I practically word vomited "I just got engaged today!!!" and with that she grabbed my hand and told me I had a killer rock and ohh'd and awed over it and then she went on her way.

Then I had to plan the wedding...

xoxo Haley

Monday, July 28, 2014

Fruit Salad

Finding a good summertime side item that Kyle will actually eat is hard to come by. He's not big into vegetables unless it's sweet potatoes so dinner time come summertime is normally a one-pot-meal. My grandmother use to always make this amazing fruit salad and, to be completely honest, I totally forgot all about it. For Kyle's birthday party, yep the big 3-0, my mom decided to bring the fruit salad dish which only reunited me with my love for fruit salad. With my new found intolerances it's going to be quite some time before I can have it again, and when it's time I won't be able to use the regular "fruit cocktail" due to my severe peach intolerance. So meanwhile, before I have to go on a 9 week clean out, I decided I would try to enjoy the fruity goodness in all it's glory. Saturday we went to T's house, Kyle's best friend, and his girlfriend made dinner and I guessed it... fruit salad. It was actually the first time I had ever made it and once I did I realized it was just too easy and too yummy not to share, with my mom's permission of course! Without further adieu:

Unfortunately my lighting source was not willing to work with me for this picture.


8oz Cool Whip (thawed)

1oz box of  sugar free vanilla jello pudding

15oz can of fruit cocktail* (in light syrup); drained

10.5oz can of mandarin oranges; drained

8oz can of pineapple tidbits** don't drain, you need the juice!


Mix together pudding, mandarin oranges, fruit cocktail, and pineapple. If you want to put an embellishment on top be sure to place 4-5 mandarin orange slices to the side. Once fruit and pudding is stirred up fold in your cool whip and mix. Once it's good and mixed together smooth out the surface and place your mandarin oranges on top.

*the grocery was out of just regular ol' fruit cocktail so I used extra cherry mixed fruit instead-basically the same thing with...extra cherries

**the grocery was actually out of the tidbits at the time that I made this so I just substituted it with crushed.

As always, let me know if you try it out and what you think!

this post was a part of Mama Kat's Writer Workshop

Friday, July 25, 2014

Sleepless in the south

I've recently got into this horrible routine at night. I go to bed but instead of going to sleep I get on Pinterest. If I try to go straight to sleep I lie there pondering about a thousand plus one things. Just random things, never of any significance. So I peruse Pinterest until my brain unwinds and my eye lids get heavy. Sometimes my eyes get so heavy they threaten to close with the view of one more pin. So at this point I put my phone on charge and try to drift off to sleep.

My eyes are now wide open. My brain screams out, "suprise! You thought you could sleep but here's a list of everything you need to do tomorrow and well...for the rest of the year".

So I lie there. Tossing and turning. Sleep deprivation knocking at my door. Before you know it my 4:30AM alarm starts screaming out in the silence of the early morning. When did I fall asleep? Why do I feel drunk? What was in that list to do today?

11:00 AM rolls around and I need a nap. My day is all screwed up now. My sleep is all over the map. The other day I was watching the afternoon news and before you know it Kyle is shaking me awake at 4:00pm. What the crap just happened? Am I narcoleptic now?

After much thought into why this is going on my only answer, in which I can't even guarantee is correct, is stress. I need to de-stress myself...and maybe drink a gallon of whiskey. Wait perhaps that's a bad idea, a hangover isn't going to do me any good.

How do you de-stress yourself? Any remedies for an amazing night of sleep?

xoxo Haley

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Taking a chance

Mama’s Losin’ It

5.) Talk about a time you took a chance.

I don't know if I can honestly say I'm a "risk taker" and that I like to take chances on a day to day basis. I would like to describe myself as fearless yet I'm an over thinker and I don't think the two can belong parallel.

Right before Kyle and I got married I had this nagging feeling in the pit of my stomach but I couldn't pin point what it was. As time went on it started to hint at my job. I had gone to college for two years when taking on one of my dads barbecue restaurants fell in my lap. I embraced this opportunity and more often than not I loved my job. As overwhelming as it could sometimes be I found happiness in what I was doing, helping carrying out my dads dream. After several months of that nagging feeling digging deeper in the pit of my stomach I realized just that, it's my dads dream not mine.

I mentioned the idea of changing careers to Kyle in which he responded by telling me that he would support me in whatever decision I made. I just couldn't bring myself to do it though. Leaving the barbecue world didn't just mean I wouldn't be smelling like pork everyday it meant I would be giving up the opportunity to one day own it. The thought of losing that opportunity weighed heavy on me. It could mean a huge sacrifice for my future children, owning a restaurant would have been a nice monetary cushion for them in which I could provide more.

As weeks went by I slowly started realizing that maybe I wasn't so happy with my job. It was the same routines everyday, other than caterings I literally did the same thing Being in charge of a whole crew started to feel like being a babysitter to a bunch of rowdy toddlers, not to say I didn't absolutely love my crew because seriously they were the best of the best, but it started to just become repetitive. The customers started getting on my nerves, believe it or not this didn't happen frequently for me, and somedays I would swear that if one more person complained about our bottled water being $1 I would absolutely lose my cool.

I still couldn't take the chance on throwing my future away.

I started feeling guilty because everyday I would come home in a bad mood which, to say the least, was not fair to Kyle.

Finally after all the signs God threw my way the chance finally came to leave the barbecue world, kind of, behind me. Our lease was coming up and my dad started talking about renewing it. Mind you that my particular store on my side of town was not in the best location which at times was very unfortunate. I had already made my mind up that I was going to be making a career change but I couldn't find the words to tell my dad. I literally would start to sweat bullets even thinking about the conversation.

Finally one morning he brought up renewing the lease and I completely word vomited. I knew this was my chance to tell him and if not now then it would be never. So I told him if he renewed I would no longer be there to run it. He looked at me completely confused and asked why and then that's when I explained it to him. Previously when I imagined this conversation I visualized darts being thrown at me, instead he told me he completely supported my decision and that he understood I had to do what was best for my family. I may have had to pick my jaw up off the floor, just saying.

Needless to say my dad ended up closing that location. After a vigorous job search in the banking world Kyle and I decided it would be best for me to be a SAHW and focus on myself and maintaining our home. I now work two days a week, two hours a day just to help out my dad by pulling the meat and marinating it. Though it's not my top choice waking up at 4:30 AM for two hours of work I'm happy with where I am at and wouldn't take back the decision if I could.

I took a chance and if there was ever a chance worth taking, this was it.

xoxo Haley

Tuesday, July 22, 2014


For quite some time now I just haven't felt good. Not the "I have a cold", "my belly hurts", etc. feel good but more of the I'm fatigue, I'm dizzy, frequent headaches, I could fall asleep any second, I rather crap my pants than walk to the bathroom...okay, you get it. I just feel like crap no pun intended. I had gone to the doctor months ago to figure out what was wrong and why I was randomly getting so dizzy I couldn't make it through a full work day. After stealing multiple tubes of blood from my body and making me pay a ridiculous co-pay, a week later I received my test results.

"Everything's fine. Your test results had no abnormalities."
...and they sent me on my way, no further testing, nothing...

'Scuse my french but are you EFFING kidding me?! Last time I checked it is not normal to be dizzy and lethargic on a day to day basis. You can take your PhD and ram it so far up your hiney that it will never see a day of sunlight. Needless to say I refuse to ever visit that doctor's office again and should have took the note down when my friend told me they almost killed him when wrongly diagnosing him.

I left it alone though. I abandoned my health concerns in hopes that they would sort themselves out, it will go away...I'll be just fine... After seeing me slowly deteriorate my mom, metaphorically speaking, came knocking on my door telling me I wasn't in this alone and we would figure this out together. So she set me up an appointment to have more blood drawn. This time we would be checking for my food allergies.

Who knew you could be allergic to something and never have a fat clue!?

I finally got my test results back and I'm allergic to many things that I consume on a daily basis, one being gluten. Bye bye beer. Grapes, so long wine. You can only imagine the big ball of pity I'm rolling around in over here...not to say that I'm an alcoholic but I like to consume about two beers a week, three if I get wild, and an occasional glass of Riesling. Do I even need to speak my love for an all-american burger? Well, hello turkey burgers...we may need to get acquainted quite sooner than later. Oh and remember that coffee addiction I was talking about? Yeah, I always use vanilla creamer, as seen above in my yellow intolerance list... I won't lie, I'm crying a little river on this side of the blogosphere.

So what's there to do now? Go through countless recipes and try to figure out what I can and cannot have. Within those recipes that are gluten-free I have to find substitutes for the things I can't have such as white wine or soy, etc. Throw away all of the knowledge I've gained throughout my journey of becoming more domesticated in order to prepare Kyle delicious dinners, because quite frankly those dinners were on the road to killing me and I'm pretty sure he would rather eat poop for dinner than to not have his wife, or maybe I'm flattering myself. On top of all of this I pretty much have to change my entire lifestyle. Kyle and I attend small group every Wednesday and each time is rotated between houses and who to cook, it's not fair to them to have to abide by my weird diet because my body is pissed at me and doesn't want to digest anything therefore it's just floating around like, "hey strawberry, how long have you been here?". Therefore when attending our bible study I will either have to eat prior or pack my dinner. Same with our Sunday brunches at Kyle's Nanny's house. Yeah, my head is still trying to wrap around all of this.

In all seriousness, even if you do not have an intolerance to gluten I would strongly suggest to try to eliminate it from your diet. If you ever do research on what it actually does to the body you, much like I, will want to sue the FDA for allowing such in the American diet. Selfish assholes. To sum it up we might as well let the FDA approve rat poison in our Lucky Charms.

Monday, July 21, 2014

Our story: We dated

Today I'm going to continue Our Love Story. If you missed Part One: We Met you can find that here.

Part Two: We Dated
After meeting December 5th we continued texting and random phone chats, we also hung out a time or two. Five days into dating Kyle I decided I was going to prove everyone wrong. I was going to make a record to show everyone just how long I knew he was the one. Really it was more for him than anyone. I started a journal. My goal was to write him a love note at least once a week and I would give it to him on our wedding night.

Our second official date was on my birthday, December 16th. I knew without a doubt that everything about him was so much different than what I was use to. I treated our unofficial relationship like a delicate flower. When Kyle came to pick me up from my parents house, where I lived, I explained to my parents that I wasn't ready for them to meet him so he would not be ringing the doorbell. My family is extremely southern traditional. Before you take a man's daughter on a date you come to the door and you shake that man's hand, that's just how it goes in the south. With my feelings so intense for him right off the bat, emotionally I could not handle them meeting him yet. Once he text me that he was in the driveway I headed out to his truck where he was standing by the passenger door ready to open it. A true southern gentleman. He took me to dinner to one of our favorite hibachi grills and the night went wonderfully.

I remember being so amazed at how smooth our conversations would flow. Never any awkward moments or twittling of thumbs, just smooth sailing. I quickly realized I could be myself with him, I could laugh, I could chat, I could be a dork. For the first time since high school I felt comfortable in a relationship. There was no pressure, no trying, it just happened.

Kyle waited almost two months of dating before he asked me to be his girlfriend. Being the jokester that he is he asked, "so do you want to be Facebook official?" Heck yes!

We went on many adventures while dating. We went on canoe trips, out of state motorcycle rides, travelled to see tractor pulls, and much more. He was the first guy I dated with an actual career and did well for himself, being that I was only 22 years old it was a pretty big deal...then again he is almost five years older.

A year and a half in to our relationship, April 12th, we decided to take our relationship to the next step. For most that would mean an engagement, but our timeline was a little backwards so instead we bought a house! With mortgage rates low it was in our best interest to buy because they would soon be going up. After six months of being together I basically lived with him and his best friend and it finally became time to start our own nest.

The old saying is once you move in together your relationship gets harder, however that wasn't the case for us. Before we had a bedroom to escape to and a roommate that we had to be conscious of. Once we had our own place we had rooms where we could get away from one another and breathe a little, not that this happened often. Kyle became my best friend. When we would argue over something the first thing I wanted to do was run and talk to my best friend, making it hard because he was the one I was arguing with.

I remember the exact moment I fell completely head over heels for him. I knew I loved him after day one but I wasn't in love with him yet. One day we decided we were going to take a nap and then get up and get ready to meet some friends at the bar. We took our showers and when we started to get ready we just looked at each other and knew we didn't want to go out. At 10pm we went on a road trip to Wendy's and got some burgers and frosty's then stopped by Redbox to get a movie. On our way back we were just goofing off the whole way home. In that moment I realized, without a shadow of doubt, I wanted to marry this man and spend the rest of my life doing just this.

Then September came...
xoxo Haley

Friday, July 18, 2014

Our Story: The Meeting

Forever ago I said I would tell the fabulous story of how Kyle and I met, I've yet to do that. So with Mr. Writer's Block knocking at my door and me trying to ignore him I'll take the time now to give you our little love story! Enjoy!

I started out as a little girl from Hendersonville, TN. Kyle started out as a little boy from Dover, TN. We were approximately 84.5 miles apart growing up. I went to college in Chattanooga, TN, he went to Murray, KY. Approximately 249.2 miles apart. 

When I was in college I was always the single friend, and I didn't mind this. I'm pretty sure my friends minded more than I did because I was just wanting to have fun and have dating flings. As a joke they set me up on a dating website. I actually went on a date with one of the guys from Chattanooga but it was never serious. 

Once I left college I returned back home to Clarksville. As mentioned here I didn't have many friends in Clarksville. I worked with all girls, had only girl friends, the church I attended was mainly younger married couples, how was one suppose to meet a guy? The bar? Um, no! So I decided I would actually look into the whole online dating trend that was rapidly becoming more popular around me. I dated two guys that I had met online and neither were lasting relationships so I decided to call it quits. I continued being single for an entire year, going on casual dates, none of which were met online, before I decided I needed to delete my online dating profile. The night I went to delete my profile I finally decided I would take a look at my number one match, I hadn't prior to this because he has a child in the picture. (Shout out to the girls who have the sanity to date men with children, after one relationship of dating a guy with a child I knew it just wasn't for me). 

And there he was. Hellllooo, handsome! Come to find out the little girl in the picture was his niece. His sister had told him to put up the picture cause in his words, "Chicks love kids". We messaged back and forth and eventually exchanged phone numbers which led to many texts back and forth. One thing that reeled me in on his profile it said something along the lines of, "I spend my Sunday's going to church with my grandfather," and "family is extremely important to me," um, what's up winner!

And then it came time to finally meet. I'm a pretty die-hard Tennessee Titans fan. My parents have had season seats since the first game and I've always enjoyed attending the games. On December 5, 2010 my friend was suppose to go to the game with me to see the Titans vs Jacksonville Jaguars however she dropped at the last second, the day before the game. She told me I should just take Kyle, the guy I had met online. After looking at her and exclaiming she was crazy I finally realized hey, maybe that's not such a bad idea. The stadium may be an hour away from where we live but I have friends there and if all else fails I'll just hang out with them. I shot him a text and asked him if he wanted to go, to which he replied he couldn't because it was his cousins birthday. I told him I understood but I sat there feeling completely shot down. While pitying myself for five minutes I got another text from him, "Nevermind, I'll be there. My roommate told me I'm a douche if I don't go." Blink, blink. SCORE! We set up the plans: I would pick him up from his house I clearly did not want a stranger knowing where I lived and have the beer ready for us in the back seat.

And then it was the morning I met him. I pulled into the cul-de-sac where he lived and notice and big trailer with the company name of my best friends brother in laws concrete business. Hm, maybe it's a sign? I called him to tell him I was outside his house, the first time I had ever heard his voice and vice versa. Oh boy, I have a country bumpkin on my hands. He walked out with a blanket in his hands, it was a December game, and it was nice to see he put some thought into our date. Once he got into my car I pulled off and we start the nervous chatter which was quickly put to rest.

Me: Hey my best friends brother in law owns that concrete company. (on said trailer)

Him: Oh really? Brittny or Lani?

Me: blink, blink. Um, Lani...

Him: Yeah that's my roommates truck and trailer, he's Josh's the owner/brother in law brother which is my best friend.

Could there be more of a sign?

We laughed about how small the world is and then continued to another topic of conversation:

Him: So what do you find attractive in guys?

Me: I don't know what it is but I love a bald head. Maybe it's the southern in me but I also love a guy who dips.

*now you may see in the picture of him above, he has a hat on. I had yet to see a picture of him without a hat and when he got into my car for the date he was also wearing a hat.

Him: oh really? Removes hat and exposes bald head.

Me: immediately blushing I give out a giggle.

We got to the game and he was a complete gentlemen. He shared his blanket with me to keep me warm and put his arm around me. I was seriously stunned at how wonderful the date was. Best first date ever.

The next day I told my sister, "I'm going to marry him" to which she quickly replied, "get real, Haley, you never put up with a guy past two months". She had a point.

Part Two: We Dated