Honeymoon Happiness

Just as I promised, here is my post about the honeymoon.

Brandon and I left the morning after our wedding to fly out to Orlando, Florida. We spent a grand total of four hours at our hotel on our wedding night (most of it spent removing the millions of bobbie pins from my hair and undoing my corset to release me from my wedding dress).

Brandon and I on the shuttle ride over to the airport the morning after our wedding.

Brandon and I on the shuttle ride over to the airport the morning after our wedding.

We spent five days exploring all that Orlando had to offer. Ok…so we actually just stuck to the kid stuff. We spent three days at Disney World and one day at Universal Studios. We stayed at a beautiful resort only a short drive from both Disney and Universal. Just outside our suite, we had a view of a small pond and beautiful, flowering bushes and trees.

The bathtub...

The bathtub…

My favorite part about our room, though, was the bathtub. It was HUGE! Needless to say, I made Brandon take me to Walmart to get some bubble bath right away.  The ground outside was covered in lizards and Brandon and I had a late night visitor when we returned from our first day at Disney…a little baby frog the size of my thumb nail. There were pools, exercise classes, an outdoor rec area, even shows that gave you the opportunity to hold an alligator. Brandon and I were not able to participate in any of the amenities the resort offered…we were having way too much fun pretending we were eight again.

Here we are in front of the famous Cinderella's Castle!

Here we are in front of the famous Cinderella’s Castle!

Like every little girl, I dreamt of going to Disney World and meeting EVERY princess, mostly just Cinderella because she was my favorite, and seeing Cinderella’s castle. I finally saw my childhood dream become a reality. Well…except the meeting all the princesses, we avoided them like the plague. I insisted on riding every ride in the Magic Kingdom, despite the rain, including Winnie the Pooh and It’s A Small World (come on, it’s the oldest ride at Disney World, we HAD to!)

We saw two families get into a huge argument while waiting for the Haunted Mansion ride and saved a little frog from being trampled by the mob trying to find shelter from the rain. People looked at me like I was crazy for trying to save a silly frog, but, we were at Disney World, it could have been a prince! We defeated the evil Zurg, rode to the top of Space Mountain, pretended we were pirates, and ended our first, magic filled night with fireworks.

Us in front of Hogwarts

Brandon and I in front of the Hogwarts train at Platform 9 and 3/4. Off to Hogwarts we go! (left) Eek I can’t wait!  We can finally see the Hogwarts Castle! (right) Who’s up for going inside???

Hogwart's Train

Brandon smiling, not even noticing that the T-Rex is about to chomp our head off. Brandon smiling, not even noticing that the T-Rex is about to chomp our head off.

Our second day in Orlando, we FINALLY went to HARRY POTTER WORLD…or the Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal’s Island of Adventure. I think I was more excited to see Hogwarts than to go on our cruise! Sad, but true. We purchased ourselves a Chocolate Frog and some Bertie Bott’s Every Flavor Beans. We rode The Hulk, helped Spiderman catch the villain, and escaped from Jurassic Park.  We also spent a fair amount of time in the rain!

Here we are at the Animal Kingdom in front of the Tree of Life.

Here we are at the Animal Kingdom in front of the Tree of Life.

The next couple days we spent at the other three parks of Disney World: Epcot, Disney Studios, and Animal Kingdom. We had an absolute blast riding any rides we didn’t have to wait in line for over two hours for and Brandon loves the zoo, so the Animal Kingdom was right up his alley. I am not the biggest fan of zoo’s but I really enjoyed seeing the adorable elephant and the fruit bats. I have never seen a fruit bat before. I thought they were normal size…like a mouse. But, I was WRONG. They are HUGE. For those of you who have seen Fern Gully, that means that those fairies were giant! At Epcot, we traveled around the world, experiencing different cultures, embracing the spirit of Norway, and eating as many German Rice Krispie Treats as we could get our hands on. YUM! And all without leaving the U.S., how convenient! We enjoyed Disney World, but Brandon and I both decided that if our future children ever want to go, their grandparents can take them. Once was enough for us.

Relaxing in a hammock at Half Moon Kay.

Relaxing in a hammock at Half Moon Kay.

Before we knew it, we were setting sail for our seven day cruise to the Eastern Caribbean. We stopped at Half Moon Kay (Carnival’s private island and my favorite of all our destinations), San Juan in Puerto Rico, St. Thomas, and Grand Turk. Brandon and I had the most wonderful time relaxing on the ship, playing at the beach, and eating all the 24 hr soft serve we could eat. We played Bingo twice and lost both times, donated to the casino on board, and spent plenty of time shopping. (We decided to collect christmas ornaments for all the places we visit. We now have one from Coronado Island, where Brandon proposed; one from Bearizona, where stopped on our way home from our California road trip; ornaments from each park at Disney World, Magic Kingdom, Epcot, Disney Studios, and Animal Kingdom; one from Harry Potter World; and an ornament from each place we docked on our cruise.) Our favorite part of the cruise, by far, was playing in the sand, building sand castles, and swaying in the hammocks. (I also rather enjoyed watching Brandon freak out every time I would swim farther out into the ocean than he was comfortable with because he thought sharks would eat me).

One of my favorite moments each day was returning to our room to find the bed made, a cute new towel animal set up on the bed, and yummy little chocolates on our pillows (which I swear have some sort of tranquilizer in them…put me straight to sleep every night).

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Our precious Jonah Bear

Our precious Jonah Bear

By the time our cruise was sailing home, Brandon and I were ready to get back to dry, cool Colorado and see our sweet baby Jonah Bear. We missed him so much! (I also wanted to get home to him because it was the second time in two weeks he had to be taken to the vet and sedated. First, while he was with my parents, a horse kicked him in the face. And then, when he was staying with the Brandon’s parents, he cut his paw open and had to get stitches. My poor baby! I am not so sure if we should be leaving him with the grandparents…they just can’t handle his craziness. – sorry to rat you out grandmas and grandpas).

I hope you enjoyed hearing about our honeymoon! We are glad to be home with our puppy and back into the swing of life. Although, I do miss watching the Caribbean sunset each night off the aft (?) of the boat.

Catch up with us next time and you will get to see what our new place in Texas looks like!

Love,

Elizabeth

Caribbean Sunset

Caribbean Sunset

What a Wonderful World

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Well…we did it! We are officially hitched! Our wedding was absolutely beautiful and everything I had dreamed it would be from the time I was a little girl. The whole day feels like a blur!

That morning, my girls and I woke up early to get our hair and makeup done. We almost broke the rule of the groom not seeing the bride before the wedding! We were all staying at the Stenger’s house, but the guys were all out sleeping in the trailers, while we ladies had the basement all to ourselves. Since we were getting up so early and the guys had stayed up all night playing games and listening to music in the garage, we figured we would have no problem sneaking out in the morning without Brandon seeing me. But, apparently he was hungry at the same time we were eating breakfast (I think that was just his excuse. Really, he couldn’t spend one more moment away from me). Luckily, I had the best Maid of Honor, who was able to distract him and I was able to escape to the car. After hours and hours and hours…and I mean HOURS of hair and makeup, courtesy of Serenity Salon and Cindy and Drew Folger…I was a beautiful blushing bride, ready to walk down the isle.

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Oh, and did I mention I was late?! Rushing over to the barn to get my dress on and ready to take pictures, I realized it didn’t matter if we were late, I was the BRIDE! I’m allowed to be late. Martin was able to practice his golf cart driving skills on my lovely ladies and me, almost throwing us from the back of the cart. But, overall, I think it was a job well done. We arrived at the dressing room in one piece and hair still in the updo position.

I felt such excitement, happiness, nervousness, joy, love, and a complete and total…overwhelming need to cry! Which I did…ALL DAY from the moment I put my dress on till we left the reception for our honeymoon! But, no worries! My two best friends, Ali and Nicole, were there to comfort and pray over me, my mom was there to…make me cry more, and my Dad was able to distract me until half way down the isle where I completely lost it.

Brandon and I exchanged vows-he wiped away my tears and we made one more pinky promise, we kissed…and the deal was sealed! (Thanks to my Uncle Scott who so kindly married us!) Walking back down the isle, we were stopped by our Air Force saber arch and kissed until they were satisfied to let us pass and both Brandon and I were welcomed to the Air Force with a slap on the bottom by a saber (which Evan…I’m pretty sure just I was supposed to be slapped, but we appreciated the gesture).

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At this point, the night became a whirlwind of clinking glasses, kissing, tears, jokes, the F-bomb thanks to my Man of Honor, dancing, and good fun.

Brandon and I cut the cake with his saber and shoved cake in each other’s faces. Ok…I nicely put the cake in his mouth until he smeared it on my face, so I had to get him back! I admit, taking a handful of frosting and covering his entire face in it wasn’t exactly the most bridely thing to do…but come on!

Our first dance was beautiful and I cried some more. And I sobbed like a baby when I danced with my dad. The rest of the night we danced and had a great time!

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Thanks to all our family and friends who were there to share in our special day and thanks to those who weren’t able to make it but were still there in thoughts and prayers. We love you all and are so appreciative for all you do. I have to give a special shout out to my bridesmaids, I wouldn’t have made it through the day without you. To my Aunt Kelli and Uncle Joe who paid for our beautiful, rustic venue. To my Aunt Suzy and Uncle Jerry who got us our DJ and let me steal your beautiful daughters for my junior bridesmaids. Plus, the candy table was wonderful. To Tonya and Craig Stenger for helping to document the day with our photographer. And to my dad, for paying for it all. To Serenity Salon for making sure my hair stayed up all night and day (a great feat for my head full of unruly hair).

And most of all, to my MOM! The day would not have happened without you and all your hard work!

Look for my next post about our honeymoon!

Love,

Elizabeth