When Your Spouse Works Night Shift

My husband and I are on different work shifts – I work days and he works nights. I’m here to tell you that it isn’t always easy being on a different schedule than your spouse but here are a couple things I’ve learned along the way.

It Can Get Lonely 

As he leaves our house for his shift at work and I’m alone in our house it gets very quiet (we don’t have kids or pets yet). Sure, I appreciate some alone time but I do get lonely especially when it’s time for bed. Over the years it has gotten better than when we were newlyweds but I do miss snuggling up to him late at night. I’ve found that keeping myself occupied with blogging, binge watching my favorite show, or talking to my friends helps keep my mind off being alone.

It Can Get Scary 

Okay – story time. We have a shampoo holder suctioned cupped to our shower wall and it was late one night (he had already gone to work) and I was in bed when suddenly I hear this loud crashing noise. You talk about scared –  I was terrified so many thoughts ran through my mind of what it could’ve been. I laid there with my heart pounding and finally mustered up enough courage to get up and see what it was. Sure enough that dang shampoo holder came off the wall and bottles of soap were scattered all on the bottom of the tub – talk about a sigh of relief!

But all that being said it can be scary staying home alone at night. When he is home I have a sense of safeness I don’t get anywhere else. Don’t let me fool you guys, I do enjoy sleeping in the middle of our king sized bed and sprawling out like a star fish but I did marry the man and I want to sleep with him! lol

Let Them Sleep 

This is a big one! Just remember that it is hard on their body’s natural cycle being on an off shift. Be patient with them and let them wake up on their own time. Even on the weekends. Do not text, call, or try to disturb them in any way. I struggled with this because I want him to come do things with me but I have to remind myself not to be selfish and let him sleep. He always gets up and yes there is always time to do plenty of fun stuff.

You Will Eat Dinner Later

Sure you don’t have to eat when your husband eats but I’ve always enjoyed sharing a meal with him at the dinner table. When he wakes up he’s initially starving so he will eat what we call his ‘breakfast’ aka a late lunch and won’t be ready for dinner until later than most. So, I’ll snack if I’m starving until we eat dinner which is anywhere around 7:30-8:30. Now my body has gotten used to eating that late so I don’t mind it at all.

You Will Take Awesome Naps Together

I love a good nap and I don’t know many people who don’t. When my husband doesn’t sleep well or doesn’t get in 8 hours you guarantee there will be a nap before work. Most of the time I am home for these naps so I get to enjoy them with him!

You Will get into The Groove of Things

After a while and you may even start liking the opposite shift thing. Like I said it wasn’t always easy for me but it has gotten easier now that we are in a routine. Just remember to stay patient and communicate how you’re feeling to each other.

I would love to hear from other woman who have significant others on an opposite shift – did you have the some of the same feelings? Are there still certain things you dislike about it? Do you love it and couldn’t imagine any other way? Let me know in the comments! 

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What I’ve Learned Building Our House

A little insight for you my husband recently embarked on the journey of building our first home together. Note, I do not use the word journey lightly. We have been working on this process since September and we are just now getting to the fun stuff! The house is not finished yet but here is what I have learned thus far.

  1. Find a great contractor. I mean it. Do your research, check out recent houses they have built, get multiple quotes, and it’s totally okay just to base this off character or first impressions because you and the contractor are going to be in contact for the next months and it’s important that you not only like their work but them too.
  2. Have a vision. You are about to be bombarded with questions with everything between “what type of exterior do you want” to “where do you want this outlet placed”. Make a Pinterest board, find a house you like and take photos, read a magazine, whatever it is get inspired.
  3. Do not be afraid to speak up. I struggled with this throughout the whole process. If something is not exactly the way you want it, tell them. My husband constantly has to remind me that I am not inconveniencing them.
  4. Be patient. Did I mention we have been working on this since September? Haha. Seriously though take the move in date the contractor gives you and go ahead and add a couple of weeks to it so you’re not disappointed. There will be set backs, weather delays, holidays, you name it but do not get discouraged your house will get completed.
  5. Have fun. While this can be stressful process, remember to have fun. This season of life only last a little while and before you know it you will be in your house for 5 years. So sit back and buy some fun things for around the house and smile because you’re one step closer to move in day!

Here are some photos of our process thus far – if you have any questions of anything seen below in my photos feel free to comment below.

House PlansOur plans from architecturaldesigns.com plan #11777HZ // featuring a sample house which I really liked seeing actual photos of houses from the plans.

Footers

FoundationSnowy footers and beginning of the foundation // the boring stuff haha

Floor Mapped OutThe rooms all laid out // Don’t panic if you’re in this stage of building it will feel much smaller than it does by the end of it all, trust me.

FramingTyvek is UpRoofing ProcessFraming/Windows/Exterior doors/Roofing – Roof Color is ‘Weathered Wood’ // This process goes by quick the rest after this takes a little longer, like I said previously stay patient! 🙂

Front of House Siding Process Siding and Windows‘This is ex-siding’ – see what I did there? haha

We chose a wider vinyl siding (6 inches) to resemble baton board. This siding also has a beveled edge to it. I was inspired by the Sherwin Williams color: Backdrop and the contractor found this siding color called PUEBLO and it was almost identical.

We also added windows to this side of the house. Previously it would have just been the tiny window above the shower in the guest bathroom. We are so happy with the decision to add the windows. They really opened up the bedrooms and brought in a lot of natural light, which we love.

Damaged Window

Mistakes happen // We noticed this chipped window and told our contractor immediately and he fixed it no charge because one of the sub-contractors broke it while working.

Stone Exterior

The Stone by Horizon Stone  // this stone color is ‘Pinehurst Blend’ applied in ‘Olde World Series’ which basically means it combines different shapes and sizes of stone.

FireplaceFront Porch

More Stone Accents // again this stone color is ‘Pinehurst Blend’ applied in ‘Olde World Series’ which basically means it combines different shapes and sizes of stone.

Dry WallWe have dry wall // also look at the mess! 🙂 Master Closet

Standing in my favorite room of the house aka my walk in closet // Storage was big for us and this house delivered with a total of 8 closets! Paint SamplesPicking out paint color// This is such an important yet simple thing to do. Buy samples of the paint you like and paint them on the wall. Paint a sample in a spot that will be in the sun and then in the shade later you’d be amazed at how different paint looks on the wall then on the paint chip and in different lighting.

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RSVP Cards A Thing Of The Past?

It’s a typical day you get off work, pick up the kids, maybe run to the grocery store you come home and before pulling into your driveway you check the mail- Junk, junk, bill, oh wedding invite! You quickly pull into the driveway and put the mail you’ve collected in your designated mail pile on the counter. Then your evening turns into your daily afternoon routine and the next thing you know weeks have passed before finally opening and actually reading the invite you received. You put it on the fridge and go about your life. Next thing  you know its 2 weeks before the wedding and you haven’t filled out that RSVP card saying you’re coming. Surely the bride and groom know you’re coming right? I mean after-all you’re family or close co-workers and you’ve spoken to them about the wedding, you’ve talked to them on the phone about details, but you forgot that one thing – mailing the dang RSVP card back!

The point of that story is – Life gets in the way and yes maybe we as humans shouldn’t be THAT busy where we can’t even get to the mailbox but it happens, it happens all the time. There has to be a better way right? I know I’m not the inventor of the alternative RSVP card but I’m here to bring awareness that there are other options.

Ideas that make the process easier for you and them:

  • Set up an email specifically for RSVPs – quick and easy set up and you’ll still have a ‘paper trail’ of everyone who said they were or weren’t coming.
  • Add your phone number with a simple line that says text or call us if you’re coming!
  • Add your wedding planner or designated person’s phone number to the invite – this way it’s one less thing you have to worry about while still getting your headcount.

Not only will this make it easier for your guest to say their coming but this will also save you time and money since you don’t have to buy postage, another envelope, and address another card for them to maybe send back.

So, are RSVP cards going to be a thing of the past? I would love to hear your opinion on this, leave comments below!

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Themed Engagement Photos

Hey guys! I just wanted to share some ideas and tips when taking engagement photos. My husband and I over the years of dating had many photos taken together so I knew I wanted my engagement photos to be something fun and different. I looked all over Pinterest and decided to do this “Old-Timey” “Retro” if you will- themed photo shoot. So I got together my ideas and went shopping. The end result turned out better than I could’ve hope, to me the theme has a whole ‘The Notebook’ feel to it.

Here I’ve compiled a list of themed photo shoots you could do:

Vintage Themed (20’s, 60’s, 80’s, whatever era fits you guys)

Movie Themed (Masterminds, The Notebook, Mr. & Mrs. Smith)

Sports Themed (Jerseys, football, golf, baseball, stadiums)

Disney Themed  (UP, Cinderella, Beauty & the Beast,)

Carnival Themed (Ferris wheels, cotton candy, stuffed animals, candy apples)

Music Themed (Guitars, banjos, pianos, music sheets, dancing)

Country Themed (Camo, hunting, fishing, boots, fields)

Big City Themed (Classy, tall buildings, taxis)

Star Wars Themed (Jedi masks, lightsabers)

Woodland Themed (Trees, suspenders, plaid, blankets, fire pit)

Lifestyle Themed (At home, in the car, everyday life happenings)

Whatever you choose to do it make it yours and have fun with it! If you’re still not sure what to do but still want to do something unique for your engagement photos, ask your photographer. Likely chances they have some ideas that they have been wanting to do for a while just haven’t had the chance or the models to do it yet.

My dress: Goodwill (tied with a red hair ribbon around waist)

My Shoes: Goodwill

His Suspenders: Belk

His Hat: Belk

Location: This is in my hometown – this sweet older couple ‘general store’ / gas station / and cars all next to their house. They do allow photos to be taken there but mainly use their space for when their car club gets together.

Photos Taken by: Storyteller Photography (http://yourstorytellerphotography.com/#!/HOME)

Note: These photos were scanned so quality is low.

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Tips for Planning A Short Engagement

A little backstory for you guys. I got engaged on June 4, 2015 and was happily married by October 16, 2015… Yes you read that right only FOUR MONTHS! Here are a couple tips I learned along the way.

Download Printable Version HERE: PrintableChecklist

6 Months

  • Announce Engagement- Whether it’s a clever social media post or a phone call, let the people know you’re engaged!
  • Choose Venue & Date- Venues are usually booked months in advanced so this is important to get done as soon as possible. With a short engagement it’s good to keep an open mind when picking a date. I got married on a Friday!

*Note the venue I chose was a life saver for my short engagement- a stock room full of decor, speakers, silverware, drink ware, plates, chairs, lights, you name it they had it. May have been a little more pricey but totally worth it.

  • Book Photographer- Much like the Venue photographers are booked months in advanced so do your research and call them asap.
  • Book Caterer- Again caterers are booked months in advanced so it’s a good idea to get ahead here. The great thing is on the first phone call you don’t have to know exactly how many people just a rough estimation.
  • Choose Wedding Party- Get your gals and guys together! Ask them in a cute way or just talk to them over dinner more than likely they knew the moment you were engaged they were going to be a part of your big day #BFFS

5 Months

  • Buy Wedding Gown- Who knew a dress could take months to arrive and when it does arrive a couple of more weeks to alter it. So get your group together and try on some dresses!
  • Order Bridesmaid Gowns- Much like the wedding dress these things take time to order and alter. It’s not a bad idea to just go ahead and pick these out the day you purchase your wedding dress.
  • Book Florist- You may be “DIY-ing” this one – but either way get an idea of what flowers will be in season and what you want your bouquets, boutonnieres, center pieces, etc to look like.
  • Book Wedding Cake- Find a local baker or bakery and show them samples of what you want your cake to look like, if they offer different flavors be sure to take the time to taste test them. Don’t forget your wedding cake topper!

4 Months

  • Start Guest List- Figure out who you want to invite to your wedding day. I had a rule that if I haven’t spoke to them in the past 4 months they weren’t invited.
  • Find Addresses for Guest- This comes a long with starting your guest list. It’s harder than you think finding addresses for people – some I googled, some I just messaged and said ‘Hey what’s your address”, and others I just handed out.
  • Figure Out Any DIY Projects- Saw a cute centerpiece on Pinterest that you fell in love with? Get to work on it. Buy your supplies or get one of your bridesmaids to help you out on this. The sooner the better!
  • Plan Rehearsal Dinner- If your into traditions this would be the Mother of the Grooms job but you still have to help the lady out. Tell her what type of food, if you want it casual, formal, etc.

3 Months

  • Order Extras- Want a cute personalized guest book? Wedding Favors? Bride and Groom signs? Order them now. I found everything I wanted via Etsy.com
  • Plan Honeymoon- Book that honeymoon! Do your research find the perfect get-away destination and book that baby!

*We ended up going on a totally unplanned road-trip which was a total blast!

  • Order Groomsmen Attire- The men’s tuxes or whatever you end up doing is a little more laid back than the women’s. So get those men styling and profilin!

*I rented tuxes from menswarehouse.com supereasy for our groomsmen that lived out of town.

  • Register for Gifts- Get that wedding registry together! No you don’t have to walk around aimlessly in a store with a scanner. Most retail stores have the option where you can do it online! (target.com, walmart.com, bedbathandbeyond.com)

*I did all mine from the comfort of my couch which made it seem less of a hassle because I could take my time and change my mind as many times as I wanted.

2 Months

  • Send out Invitations- Get those bad boys in the mailbox. I live in a small town so I handed a lot of mine out which saved on postage.
  • Book Hair Dresser- Book your hair dresser for your wedding date. Let her know whose hair she will be doing that day and what time the wedding is.

*I’ve gone to the same hairdresser for years.. she did my hair, my mothers, and mother-in-laws. I let all my bridesmaids do their own hair. As far as make up I did my own as well as everyone else did. (Saved money)

  • Final Dress Fitting- By now your dress has arrived and will need to be fitted again after alterations. Don’t forget your shoes!
  • Attend Wedding Shower- Sit back and enjoy your event. Wedding showers can happen anytime but 2 months is a good timeline for these festivities.
  • Start DIY Projects- You know those supplies and ideas you gathered a couple of months ago? Start and finish those bad boys!

1 Month

  • Figure Final Guest Count- Hopefully you have gotten your RSVP’s by now and can start getting a final count of the number of guest that will be attending. Let your caterer and venue know the final count.

*Seriously who sends those pesky RSVP cards back? I had an email account set up and on my invitations had printed “Email us if you’re coming” so much easier than mailing back a card!

  • Confirm Time and Date with Vendors- Make sure your vendors know what time they need to be there and where.
  • Get Marriage License- Go to your local courthouse with your birth certificate, driver’s license, social security number, and proof of residence in hand.
  • Pick Out Music- Whoa what? Yes pick out the songs you want during the whole sha-bang! That means the music your wedding the parents walk down to, the wedding party walks down the aisle to, the song you want to walk down to, the exit song, your first dance song, father/daughter dance, mother/son dance, and any music you want playing at your reception!

2 Weeks

  • Figure Out Hair and Make Up Style- Pinterest is a great resource. Send your hairdresser some pics before the big day of some of the styles you like.
  • Cut/Color Hair- Speaking of hair, get those roots covered up, get your grooms hair cut, your hair cut, whatever else hair situations you have now is the time to get them taken care of.
  • Pick up Groomsmen Attire- If you’re like me and rented your tuxes now is the time to pick them up. Remind your groomsmen to run by the store or pick them up for them.
  • Whiten Teeth- Photos, photos everywhere in every direction. Make sure that smile is pearly white and ready to shine. I’ve always just used Crest White Strips.
  • Steam Dress- Your dress at this point has been in a bag for a little while hiding from your groom in some closet. Get it out and make sure it’s wrinkle free.

1 Day

  • Manicure/Pedicure- TREAT YO’SELF. Seriously relax and get your nails done because you know those ring pictures are coming.
  • Enjoy Rehearsal Dinner- Go through the motions of the big day, eat some food, and enjoy time spent with friends and family.
  • Get Packed for The Big Day- Spend your evening making sure you have what you want for tomorrow. (Rings, accessories, dress, shoes, make-up, etc)
  • RELAX- You’ve made it tomorrow is the day, enjoy the evening whatever you end up doing.

Wedding Day

  • Drink Water- Stay hydrated!
  • Eat Something- This is easier said then done. You’re feeling all these emotions and the last thing you want to do is eat but EAT!
  • Hair/Makeup- Get glammed up!
  • Finalize Decorations- Before slipping into your dress walk to your ceremony area/reception area and make sure everything is where you want it.
  • Enjoy the Day- Take time to enjoy it. It flies by so quickly, slow down, and really enjoy the moments happening.
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