Promises We Make – Valentine’s Edition

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It may have taken 42 years to meet this guy, but man oh man… was the wait worth it.

Happy Valentine’s Day to the absolute love of my life – Tim Kirksey.

It’s funny to think it was only a little over 3 1/2 years ago that we even met. According to our wedding website, it went a little something like this:

How did you meet?

We met through eHarmony. Yes, it actually works.

When did you first communicate?

October 31st, 2014

When & Where was your first date? We met on Saturday, November 8, 2014 in Macon at The Rookery. He ordered a burger and beer. She ordered chicken tenders and beer. He asked the waitress if she could bring a coloring book & crayons for his date.

And that’s what sealed the deal.

When did you first say I Love You?

February 13th, 2015. He wrote a love letter to her and handed her his grandmother’s topaz & gold necklace. In the letter, he expressed his love. She was over the moon!

When did you move in together?

May 13th, 2016. Nicole got a job with the City of Americus as the Director of Tourism. Tim invited her to move in with him.

When did you get engaged?

Saturday, August 27th, 2016. He surprised her with a 5 hour North Georgia Winery tour. Later that night, they were taking photos in a vintage western photo shop. There dressed in a cowboy hat & spurs, he asked her to marry him. (She was wearing a feature boa & bustier.) How could you possibly go wrong?

And yes, we eventually got married.

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Here are the actual vows I recited to my husband on our wedding day:

 

Tim,
When I think of everything we have ahead of us – it makes standing here in front of our friends and family and making a promise easy. I know with you by my side that we’ve got this. For better or for worse, because we are not quitters.

We plan. We prepare. And we make promises that we mean to keep.

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With that being said..
Tim, I promise as your wife I will do the following:
At the end of the day, I will always have your back. I’m fiercely loyal and will never make a decision or enter any agreement that does not have our best interests at heart. And with each decision I make, I promise to work toward a compromise with you, if the need arises.

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I will be that safe haven for you when the day is hard. I promise to be strong, make wise choices, and speak up if we ever find ourselves in a situation where it would be necessary. You don’t always have to carry the burdens of our home. Just know, I’ve got your back. Through thick & thin.

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I will contribute and help us build our future together. You know I was never looking for someone to take care of me or someone to carry the load. I was looking for my equal. And though I know I am capable and strong enough to make it on my own, I am also aware that I need someone else to rely on.

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I recognize you as the head of our family, and want you to know that I respect you and will honor you as my husband. I choose you not necessarily because I need you, but because I want you. 

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I promise to take my role as the step mother of your children very seriously. I will take care of them as if they were my own, and I promise to love them, cherish them, and be a role model and confidante that they can count on. I want us to provide a stable and nurturing environment where they are exposed to a life of art, music, theatre, dance, international cultures, and have all the tools they need to be successful, independent women.

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We don’t know what God is going to allow to enter our lives. Whether it is sickness, financial loss, or some other tragedy – just know that we’ve got this. I promise to help you make home that is a sacred refuge for us, to put our little family unit first.

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I promise to always be the eternal optimist that you fell in love with. I’ll always, always help shine the light on the good. I’ll point out the beauty you may have missed. And more than anything else, my one goal, each day, is bring more joy into our lives. And know that a lot of that joy comes from finding ways to serve you as a steady partner.

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Just know:
I’d choose you:
In a hundred lifetimes, in a hundred worlds, in any version of reality, I’d find you and I’d choose you.

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In other words… You will never have to walk through this world alone.

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And in the words of Winnie the Pooh – If I live to be a hundred, I want to live to a hundred minus one day, So I never have to live without you.

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To the man that made our dream a reality and who continues to surprise me and love me in ways I never knew could happen – thank you and I love you.

Happy Valentine’s Day! May our first Valentine’s as Kirkseys be just the beginning of incredible adventures!

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Fantasy Birthday

It is officially the week of my birthday! I spent the entire weekend relaxing and enjoying myself! Saturday, I kicked things off with a little Starbucks Double Shot Espresso with Cream and watched 4 episodes of the Real Housewives of Beverly Hills.

Seriously.

That’s what I do when I can do what I want.

Then I took a long, hot bath in sweet orange bath bomb/oil and read several chapters of the second book to the Savannah Coven Series.

Again, seriously.

I am such a girl.

Followed by an Avocado mud mask & coloring in my adult coloring books. I finished the morning off with a strawberry cupcake my mom baked me for my birthday week.

Life was pretty grand.

Tim & I had dinner that night with my MIL and SIL at the new restaurant in our little town: Silo Restaurant & Bakery. I had the Prime Rib, baked potato, green beans, mac & cheese, & roll for $18.95. I just can’t make this up. What a steal for all of that food!

On Sunday, we continued our Tour de Churches of Sumter County. This time we visited Plains United Methodist Church. After church, we ate at the Quality Inn restaurant (seriously – they have a mega lunch bar and it is really good,) and then did our weekly shopping. Another great afternoon. That evening, we ate the homemade chili I whipped up in the crock pot and watched several old episodes of the Tudors. Not a bad weekend at all.

Now here are – Monday! Tick-toc… the clock is ticking and it is almost time to turn 45.

Holy mother of God. It’s happening.

Today, for fun, I thought I would share my fantasy birthday gift list. Why not? Play a little with the “How Cool Would This Be?” and see what comes out of it.

Here is my fantasy birthday wish list:

First of all – I am throwing a party Saturday night. And at this party (in my fantasy,) I am wearing the perfect little party dress:

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Next up – are the things I would like:
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Like this beautiful Chanel bag. Be still my beating heart – it is the perfect color of blue!

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And this adorable unicorn. I collect odd toys in my office and this one would be a perfect addition!

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And some blue velvet boots! I have been eyeballing different ones all season.

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And these fantastic Viking Horns to toast with!

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And I love tacos & I love recipe books – why not give me a taco recipe book?

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And some beautiful rose gold bose stereo headphones!

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And a rolex.. with a blueish – grey face… covered in diamonds. Duh!

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And this adorable coloring book!

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My signature scent of perfume!

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A fun mug!

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These fantastic Tiffany & Co sunglasses!

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This beautiful brown leather carry-all.

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And finally – a delicious French cook book!

 

What would you have as your fantasy birthday wish list?

At The Top Of The Hill

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Here I am: Sitting at the top of the hill.

What hill is that?

The one that basically says I am halfway into the game.

I turn 45 in exactly 2 weeks. Fourteen days  and yes, according to science and society, I will be middle-aged.

This doesn’t scare me so much as the pending time that begins to tick in the opposite direction. For example, this coming Monday, Tim & I will close our loan on the house. We are changing from a Construction Loan to a Mortgage and we opted for the 15 year loan.

Why?

Because in 15 years I will be 60 years old. We want to retire without a mortgage over our heads.

FIFTEEN YEARS.

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Me at 5 – 40 years ago

A lot can happen in 15 years, but it also flies by oh-so-fast. I do realize 15 years ago I was 30. I still lived in Macon, was still married to my first husband, and yet at this point in time, I had not experienced a lot of big stuff: The Big C, meningitis, lay offs, big moves to bigger cities, divorce, new relationships, a whole new life, and some of the darkest days of my life. The 30s were equally exciting & empowering, as well as devastating & humbling. When I turned 40, I got divorced, moved home, rebuilt my life and everything… I mean EVERYTHING changed.

Now… here I am staring at the future. Looking it smack dab in the eye. I have my arms on my waist and I am taking a deep breath. Time will eventually run out. Most people barely make it through their 70s. I realize I could make it past the 80s.. but none of that is guaranteed. Hell, a 45th birthday is not guaranteed.

But here we are. Middle age.

Nice to meet you. I knew you were coming, I just didn’t expect it so soon.

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My 40th Birthday party – 5 years ago!

I’m starting to see some lines, and they are not so fine anymore. They are deeper and more pronounced. I’ve toyed with the idea of Botox, but then again, I am so much into authenticity, I find it hard to cross over. My hair has been graying since my early 20s. It started with a few around my face, but now, if I didn’t get my hair colored, I would be completely silver. THAT is hard to believe. Plus, I used to color my hair every 8 weeks, now we are at 5 weeks. At some point in the next 15 – 20 years, I might make that transition. But not now. I still have time.

But not much.

I started to experience fatigue in my 30s and by my 40s I really understood what it meant to be tired. Not just physically tired, but mentally, emotionally, and spiritually. I can now comfortably take a nap and I can also comfortably say NO. I am more selfish with my time and more protective of my personal space. Time keeps on ticking… and I need to savor every moment.

Thankfully some bad stuff happened during my 30s. Things that shook me to my core. Nothing earth shattering, but enough to change me into a better me. I worked and fought hard for the life I lead now (be it as humble and flawed as it is,) and I am eternally grateful for this transition.

 

The abuse I put on my body in my twenties & 30s has caught up with me in my 40s. I am much heavier and less active, and I have aches and pains you can’t imagine. I go through phases of doing better, then I fall off the health-wagon, only to start back at zero.

But it wasn’t always that way.

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About 30 years ago!

Maybe year 45 can be the five-year count down to something amazing. Maybe I will flourish in my 50s in ways I never could have imagined. Maybe…

…. and time keeps on ticking.

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Last birthday – Turning 44!

Here’s to the future! Lets us savor the special moments, schedule our hair appointments a few weeks sooner, and invest in a little more Ben Gay!

45 – I see you and I am ready.

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August 2016 at the top of the hill, in a vineyard in North Georgia