Monday, December 31, 2007

New Years at Stephanie's

Tim & I are spending the night ringing in the new year with our friends Janel, Mark, & Stephanie. We had a yummy meal of Thai curry and fresh crab from Steph's father-in-law. Her boys (EJ and Cullen) are playing at the beach, so Steph's hosting our little get-together tonight.
We're about to play some racey game called Spicey Farkle, which Steph thought had something to do with farts, but turns out it's a game with di, and we certainly hope no one will be passing gas during the game!
I am mostly just showing Janel and Steph how to blog (and since I just started today, I'm an expert!).
Happy New Year!!!
From all of us on Quarry Lane in Lancaster - Kirsten, Tim, Mark, Janel & Steph (hopefully we'll take a picture before the night is over to remember this wonderful evening).
Addendum on 1/3/08 - Finally got the New Year's pictures ready to upload! Check out my glasses (even if they're from when I went to NYC for New Year's in 2005).

13 days before the wedding...

A glimpse into our lives! Could it really be true? This turned out to be one of those events that "made us stronger," but in the midst of all that was going on, a BURGLARY at Tim's house just 13 days before the wedding was not really what we had been hoping for!
Yes, it's true... the story goes like this: We had been celebrating a birthday with our nephew, Tristen, and I decided to return to Tim's house to help him load some bricks into his car to take to his brother (Doug, a general contractor) the next day. It was late... about 11 o'clock at night.
When we first arrived, we noticed that the gate (which Tim and his family had just installed months prior when off street parking was added to the property) had a broken latch. At first we thought some neighborhood boys might have been messing around and kicked in the gate door, but as we approached the house, things seemed more odd by the minute.
We entered through the back door and noticed there were gloves on the floor (in July?!?). As we walked further into the house, it was clear that someone had been inside, having left items that they couldn't carry, or got too scared to come back for - such as the TV in the middle of the living room floor. Tim heard water running and ran into the basement. He said "don't move!" Just as soon as I was able to blink my eyes, he was back upstairs and dropping his pants in front of me. I had no idea what was going on, but didn't think things were right, since my ever-so-modest husband-to-be was now in his unders in front of me! He told me to call the police, tell them that someone had broken in, and to stay put where I was. I did as requested and could all the while hear Timothy schlopping around in knee-deep water in the basement. I wasn't sure if I thought he'd get jungle-rot or electrocuted first, but both possibilities came to my mind. 911 was activated and the police arrived very promptly. The summoned the fire company, who spent the next several hours pumping gallons and gallons of water out of the basement!
Turns out some thieves had entered to steal copper pipes. They cut out all of the pipes in the basement and managed to break the main water line in the process. The next 48 hours were a total whirlwind - we contacted our parents, followed by the prayer chain at church, the insurance company, a restoration company, plumbers, carpenters, etc. Multiple family members and friends converged on the house the next day to begin the clean up process. After it was all said and done, and we added up the stolen items (MANY power tools, Tim's laptop, stereo, other odd items and his PASSPORT - yes, 13 days before our honeymoon to Central America!) and damage done, it seems like about $10,000 in expenses were accrued. We're thankful for homeowner's insurance, but our hearts were heavy, not only for our own misfortune, but also for the lost souls who had committed such a terrible act.
Hours on end were spent "cleaning up" after the event, and Tim's passport was replaced after standing on Chestnut Street in Philly for 8 hours on a hot, summer day (just 4 days before the wedding), but the devastation and discouragement lingered on.
We found out months later that the thieves actually entered into 14! houses and performed similar, horrible acts of destruction... all for about $3/lb in scrap metal for copper pipes!
Tim has spent several days missing work to take care of details related to the robbery and going to court, etc., and even though we've now sold this house, he still may be called back to court to testify.
In the midst of the dirt and damp boxes, we were able to muster up a smile, rejoicing in the fact that no one had been home at the time of the robbery, no one was hurt, we had each other, and we had a large group of family & friends joining with us to get the work done, bring us meals, pray for us and love & support us. The photo here was taken the day after the robbery, when we were in the thick of the clean up!

For all those who've been waiting...

People have been asking for ages about pictures from the wedding. Now since we've been married for exactly 5 months and 2 days, and the new year is about to begin, we thought we better get the ball rolling. We'd like to share some photos with you all! They will come soon, but we'll start with just one - it's one of our favorites from the wedding... the happiest day in my life thus far!
Our wedding website will soon be extinct, so we decided to jump on the blogging bandwagon and do this instead.
The past five months have been very full, yet we have enjoyed newlywed bliss and are blessed daily with goodness and happiness. We hope to provide a snapshot of what we've experienced as a newly married couple -- once owning three homes, now down to just one, both with new jobs or job responsibilities, status post two robberies, a wedding, honeymoon, moving about three times, our first Thanksgiving & Christmas as "one" and many other daily ins and outs of life as we know it being hitched. We love married life and highly recommend it (taking that quote from our friends Jonathan & Jennie Groff). We're thankful for each other and thankful for all of you - our family & friends who daily pray for us, encourage us, love us and live life with us!
We have a lot of catching up to do, so we'll likely post several entries from the past several months - they have been eventful, to say the least! and then we'll get started on the present. We look forward to 2008 with much anticipation. We are anxious for some more relaxed, restful times, as well as many new experiences as "partners for life!"
Blessings to all on your new year! May it be one where peace in our world may become more of a reality, and may you experience joy and happiness for you and yours.
Love, Kirsten (for both of us!)
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