Friday, July 20, 2007

Hello, dear readers. I am sorry I have left you so long without knowing the goings-on of my life. I hope that you can find it in your hearts to forgive me...

Life is good. Lots of coming and going. I feel as though much of my time is spent either A) working, B) in Arlington, or C) driving between Abilene and Arlington. That stretch of I-20 and I have become quite familiar with each other as of late. :)

I had to charge at work today. Not my favorite task, but one I am slowly becoming more comfortable with. It helps to have great coworkers who are supportive and willing to lend some knowledge and experience in areas where I am still lacking a bit.

I am still loving being engaged. :) As a matter of fact, I don't anticipate this being something I will ever feel any less excited about. I get more and more excited every day. Charles is pretty much amazing, and I smile every time I think about the fact that I get to spend my life with him. The people I work with tell me I start glowing every time his name is mentioned. I don't argue with them. I know it's true. I miss him. But I get to see him tomorrow, and this makes me happy.

I also miss my puppy. She stayed in Arlington with my parents when I came back to Abilene on Tuesday. I kind of think they might like her a little bit. She likes them too, so it works out pretty well. But I think she likes me too, and I hear she misses me. I am excited to see her tomorrow too.

I am tired. I think maybe I will go to bed soon. But I will leave you with a story:

When I got home on Tuesday night, I was exhausted. By the time I finally got home and settled and wound down for the night, it was probably around 11 or so. I was excited to sleep. Just before I drifted off to sleep, a very loud chirping noise jerked me back to life. A cricket had taken up residence in my bedroom. Not acceptable. I got out of bed and attempted to locate the thing. By following the chirps, I determined that it was hiding somewhere in the bookshelf by my bedroom door. I could not find it. But the noise I made while looking for it seemed to scare it into silence, so I gave up and went back to bed. About 5 minutes later, again, just as I was about to fall asleep, the chirping began again. Again, I made a fruitless attempt to locate the culprit. Again, it shut up and I went back to bed. This continued for quite some time. Probably an hour or more. Eventually, I stopped getting up to try to find the cricket, and resorted to tossing my pillow in its general direction to scare it into silence. The last time I remember looking at the clock, it was around 1:55. I'm not sure if it finally stopped chirping for good, or if I fell asleep to its screeching lullaby. Fast forward to Wednesday night. I went to bed fairly early, having not fully recovered from the previous night's activity. Again, about 5 minutes after I turned out the lights, the familiar chirping began. This night I was not having it. I was determined that this creature would not be responsible for 2 sleepless nights in a row. I got up, turned on the lights, and began my hunt. I finally located the stupid thing on one of the shelves in my bookcase behind some books. (And when I say "located," I mean it jumped up practically into my face and just about scared the life out of me.) The chase was on. I grabbed a nearby piece of paper and attempted to catch the little guy. Let me tell you, crickets are quite speedy, and are blessed with some impressive jumping skills. After a brief chase around the room, I was finally able to catch him with my paper trap. As soon as I had him, I immediately squished him without a second thought. No more cricket keeping me awake at night! I went back to bed feeling triumphant at first, but then surprisingly guilty. I actually felt bad for killing the nuisance that had kept me awake almost all of the preceding night. Charles told me I shouldn't feel bad because it probably didn't feel bad for keeping me awake. I understand his logic, but I still can't help but feel a pang of guilt whenever I think about it. But don't worry... I'm not losing any sleep over it. And I mean that quite literally... :)

Friday, July 06, 2007

Silly me. I forgot to include the picture of the ring. Here it is.

P.S. - We set the date today! June 14, 2008. Mark your calendars!! :)


Ok, here's how the whole getting engaged thing went down:

Charles came to Abilene to see me for the 4th of July. I had to work all day, so when he got to town around 5 or so, he came up to the hospital to see me. He met my coworkers and hung out for a bit, and then headed back to my house to wait for me to get off. He never acted weird or nervous or anything. I was clueless.

I got off work around 7:30ish and headed home, excited because Charles had promised to take me out to eat since we hadn't been on a real date in a while. I called him on the way home, as I always do, to see what he had been up to since I saw him last. He told me something about hanging out and watching TV or something. I told him I was on my way home and I'd see him in a few minutes, thinking that we'd hang up and I see him in about 3 minutes when I got to the house. But he wouldn't let me off the phone. I figured he just wanted to talk because he was bored, but I later learned he didn't want to take any chances on me calling my parents for any reason and having the surprise ruined. (It seems my parents have known for about 2 weeks now that this was all going to happen! I must say I am impressed with their secret keeping abilities!)

When I pulled into the driveway, Charles was waiting for me at the front door, dressed all nice in a button-down shirt and jeans. I thought this was a little unusual, since both of us generally dress pretty casually when we go anywhere, but I figured maybe he just wanted to look nice for our date. Once I got inside, he told me he had something for me and led me into my room, where there was a vase of red roses waiting for me on my dresser. At this point I still didn't really suspect anything, because he has been known to bring me flowers for no reason on more than one occasion in the past. He seemed really anxious to get going on our date, but I told him I at least wanted to change out of my scrubs first because I felt all hospitaly. When I got done changing and came to tell him I was ready to go, he was outside. I asked him what he was doing and he said something about having to put some bag in his car. I had no clue what he was talking about, but really didn't think anything of it.

Charles had already informed me that he wasn't going to tell me where we were going to eat until we got there. Again, I didn't think there was anything unusual about this because he has loved surprising me from the very beginning of our relationship. (I think maybe it has something to do with his love of being in control of situations, but that's a different subject entirely...) But I love surprises almost as much as I hate making decisions, so I had no complaints. We got in the car and left. When we pulled out of my neighborhood, he turned the opposite direction from the way we would go to get to 99% of the eating establishments in Abilene. This struck me as a little odd, but there was a Chili's in the direction we were headed, so I figured maybe that's where we were going. Until he pulled into the main entrance of the ACU campus.

As we drove up the driveway toward ACU, I kept asking him what in the world we were doing there, and all he would say was, "Just trust me!" We drove around and parked in front of the new Jacob's Ladder sculpture in front of campus. As we got out, he pulled a book out of the back seat of his car. Again I asked what we were doing there, and again he told me to trust him. Then he made up some story about needing to return a book to the library, which was an obvious lie since I doubt he even knows how to get to the ACU library. I called him on that immediately and he made no efforts to cover that one up. He led me up to the statue and had me sit on one of the giant rocks next to the little pool with a waterfall that is part of the sculpture. He sat down next to me and handed me the book, which was a scrapbook of all the things we have done together from the first day we met until now.

I opened the book and was attempting to actually look at it and read the various things written in it, but Charles kept making me flip the pages. He told me that he was hungry and I could read it all later. I thought this was a little weird. If he was so hungry, why did we have to stop here first? And why give me a scrapbook if I can't look at it? But we continued flipping through the pages and remembering various dates we had been on and things we had done. I had already started developing suspicions at this point, but they were heightened even more when I turned to a page that had pictures of both of our families on it. I kept turning pages until I came to the very last page, which said "Will you marry me?" At just about the same time I was turning the page and processing what it said, I realized that Charles was no longer sitting next to me, but was on his knee in front of me holding a ring! He said some very nice things that I remember thinking were very sweet, and I noticed he was crying, but I really only halfway heard everything up until I heard the words "will you marry me?"

At this point, I pretty much lost all control of speech. I am 99% certain that the first thing I said was "Yes," but it was quickly followed by a string of word vomit, which probably included something along the lines of "Are you kidding me? Is this for real? Holy cow! Are you serious? Oh my gosh! This is not in the window!" (Sidenote: We had been talking about getting married for a while, and Charles had given me this "window" of when he was actually going to pop the question. The supposed time frame was from the beginning of August until the end of September. July 4 definitely was not in this window!) Anyway, when I finally ran out of air and was forced to pause for a second, Charles said, "Was there a 'yes' somewhere in there?" I immediately assured him that yes, there was absolutely a yes, and he put the ring on my finger and gave me a big hug and a kiss. For approximately the next 10 minutes I was in a state of complete and total shock, which involved a lot of smiles and hugs and kisses intermixed with multiple reminders that this day was "not in the window!" We were both so excited, and trying so hard to realize that what had just happened actually had happened!

I called my parents as soon as we got back in the car, and of course they knew exactly why I was calling and were so excited for us. Charles called his parents too, who also already knew what was going on, and they were thrilled as well. From ACU we went to Johnny Carino's, which is where we were eating the very first time we had an actual conversation, but neither one of us was really able to eat. We spent the whole time either on the phone or smiling and laughing and being giddy. We would occasionally take bites of our dinner, but I really don't think I even tasted my food.

The rest of the night was kind of a blur. We drove out to Hawley to watch fireworks with Megan and Stan and Pat and Gwyn, but by the time we got out there the show was almost over. I don't think either one of us cared. There were lots of calls made and congratulatory text messages received. It was such a perfect night. I can't believe I have found such a great guy, and that I get to spend the rest of my life with him!! I am so excited!!

Wednesday, July 04, 2007


That's right. Charles popped the big question tonight, and I said yes!! (Followed by a stream of chatter so extensive that Charles had to ask me if there was a 'yes' somewhere in there!) I will post a more detailed account of the evening's events and a picture of the bling tomorrow or so, but for now this is all you get. I am going to hang out with my FIANCE!!! :)