Sunday, March 27, 2011

The start of something as a Dugas

Well, it's official.  I'm a wife.  While I look back on this past week and half it seems like it has come and gone way too fast, and at the same time some of the hurdles we had to cross make me cringe.  I feel pretty confident saying this far in advance; this is sure to be a fairly lengthy blog, so if you feel the need to skim through some it is fine.  I just don't want to forget anything when I look back later.

So let's go back to Thursday the 17th..two days before the wedding.  My dad and his family had gotten in Wednesday night late.  My mom and Kay Kay came in that day early.  Baker-Smith and Sal Pal came in late afternoon.  I worked all day.  Josh took my dad fishing.  Thursday night after work I went to the reception hall as fast as possible...everyone began decorating an hour earlier.  It looked great.  I gave my opinion here and there, and then we all left to find food.  We ended up at Chili's, and from that point on I felt like the night was not on my side.  I cried in the car, I cried walking in, I cried sitting at the table.  I was just so emotional and so sad because I felt like the wedding would come and go so quickly and I just wanted to be able to spend time with my family and friends.  My tears were dried, my fears were calmed, and after dinner everyone came to the house for a little quality time.

Friday morning we hit the ground running.  Between dropping off dogs, getting fingers and toes done, and getting ready for a rehearsal dinner there was too much to do and not enough time to do it.  Everything came together, and thankfully my dad and Josh didn't mind working their tails off to make everything perfect.  Rehearsal went smoothly.  Auntie S was the perfect coordinator as she tried to whip the boys into shape and voice some of my concerns about traditions to the preacher.  Before we knew it we were out of there and headed to the dinner.  At the dinner we all had a fabulous time.  Surrounded by friends and family, I couldn't have asked for anything more perfect.  The fish and Indonesian cuisine were out of this world, the crawfish were to die for, and the oysters were fantastic!  Perfect night ending with all of the girls coming to stay with me and telling stories and gossiping until we all fell asleep.

Saturday was wedding day, but I was too busy to stress.  I had my hair and make up done and my bridesmaids all came to a manicure and brunch that was hosted by the illustrious Crazy Ladies.  Mimosas and a musical serenade made sure that we are a family the beauty shop will not soon forget!  Then it was on to the church for pictures.  This is when I started to have time to worry.  The bridge was closed...THE bridge linking all my family, friends, and videographer from out of town to the wedding.  Didn't the bridge know it was my wedding weekend?  I panicked, but of course it worked out.  The wedding proceeded, everyone was there, Josh and his dad halved the last piece of gum, but at the end of the day we were MARRIED!

The reception made everything worthwhile.  Everything that we had been planning, working so hard on, culminated at this one time.  It was amazing.  I remember just looking around and being in complete bliss.  It was exactly what I wanted.  We all danced until we couldn't dance anymore.  Josh and I kept saying we would leave, but we just didn't want to...we were having the time of our lives.  The night was perfect, and there is no possible way that we could ever express our thanks enough.  I cried when we left that night...I was sad to go, I didn't want to go on a cruise, I just wasn't sure what to do.

Sunday morning came, and we continued our journey to the port to catch our ship.  We made it with perfect timing.  Our bags were the right size so we chose to carry them on.  We laughed at those poor saps checking in their bags...they were sure not to have them until the wee hours of the morning.  Not us though...we would have our stuff whenever we wanted.  We walked proudly through that terminal each strapped down with matching bags.  But then the luggage Gods laughed at us.  The shipped had been delayed over three hours coming in that morning because of fog...we were now in a major set back.  We sat packed into a hot room with a thousand other people.  Very quickly, our bags began to get heavy.  Eventually the line started to move though, and we were yet again proud of ourselves for carrying our own bags.  Four hours later, when we finally made it to the room, we had begun cussing our bags.  Our shoulders had given out and were rebeling against the excess weight.  Lesson time check your dang bags.

The ship was massive, our room had a gorgeous view from the balcony, everything seemed perfect...except Josh was sick.  That was ok though because I am a nurse, and what good nurse does not pack her own poly-pharmacy for emergencies like this?  I dosed him up and we were good to go.  Except the medicine didn't help, so I dosed him again, and again.  Two days, three trips to the onboard pharmacy, and sixty dollars later...Josh was feeling great!  Good thing because the next stop was Jamaica!

Jamaica was gorgeous.  The land was beautiful, the water clear, and the people so nice.  We wheeled and dealed, Josh got a hair braid, and we rode in a glass bottom boat to get a view of the ocean life.  Before we got back on board Josh decided he may need a little DayQuil that he saw at an American shop in the port.  We bought it, boarded the boat, and were good to go.  Next stop, the Caymen Islands.

As the day progressed in the Caymen's, so did Josh's sore throat.  We went on a tour with a family from Honduras.  Only the dad spoke English, so he translated the whole way.  We told him we were honeymooning, he translated to his family and they all clapped and cheered for us.  Then they gave us pears, and they each gave us a little marriage advice.  We got to visit the town called Hell.  It was mostly a tourist trap.  When we walked in they greeted us with, "Hi.  How the hell are you?  What the hell are you looking for?  Hurry up and get the hell out of here."  After we left the town of Hell, we decided to spend the rest of the day on the beach.  Apparently the rain had the same plan though so we gave up and retreated back to the boat.  By this point, Josh was completely out of DayQuil and was really starting to feel bad.

We tried to start the next day off on a new foot.  We were in Cozumel, and I was pumped because I was swimming with the dolphins.  It was amazing and definitely one of the highlights of my trip.  We also ate authentic mexican cuisine, shopped, and had fun with the locals.  Once we got back to the boat we decided that we were ready for an elegant night at sea, so we cleaned up and got decked out to go to this amazing steakhouse that was on board.  It was delicious, and a perfect end to our day!

All in all, the trip was amazing.  Besides the first $60 I spent in the pharmacy, I went back and spent at least forty dollars more on cough syrups, cough drops, and the like.  Apparently, I wasn't as good of a nurse as I had originally credited myself for.  All sickness aside, we had the time of our lives.  We went to shows, ate pizza at 2am, ordered room service, enjoyed our view from the balcony, had a couples massage, drank numerous tropical beverages in the hot tub, watched movies outside on the big screen under the stars, and just enjoyed each other's company.

Now we are back in the real world and are excited to start our life as a family.  As we pulled onto our street earlier today on our way in from the cruise I told Josh I guessed the honeymoon was over.  He assured me that it was just beginning and would never end.  Words of comfort that I needed to hear although the piles of laundry we brought back with us begged to differ.  We came in to a clean house compliments of great friends and family.  Baker-Smith completely outdid herself and had our guestbook finished and waiting for us on the bed along with welcome home note.  Josh and I are still searching for a way to repay her for everything that she went out of her way to do throughout the whole wedding process.

Tomorrow will be back to real life as I spent my first day post-honeymoon bringing my husband to the family doctor and then to the eye doctor (apparently you can't leave your contacts in a drinking glass soaking and expect them to still be there when you return...our fault and we do take that blame).  So now it is Home Sweet Home and life as we know it begins.

Monday, March 14, 2011


I haven't been the best with keeping up with my blog.  Time just seems to slip away from me these days.  But I have missed blogging.  It seems to be such a good an outlet, a release for me.  I don't even know why I fought the urge to get one for so long.

It is now the wedding week.  We are knocking on Tuesday's door as I write this and the wedding is Saturday.  Tomorrow is my last day off before all the festivities begin.  My family will begin to arrive on Wednesday, so tomorrow will bring an early morning with a massive overhaul of cleaning.  This is also the week that I have developed a stomach ulcer.  I don't even know why...but then again I do.  I have been doing an excellent job of keeping it cool for all of this.  I have been very go with the flow and non-chalant about most everything.  I am very proud of myself because all of these qualities are so not me.  I think the stress is coming from the unknown.  I won't be upset with how anything turns out (for the most part), but I am nervous thinking about how it will all fall together and how it will all come to be.  I want to know how this day will go down in my history.

Throughout all of the stress, I have really been thinking about how lucky I am lately.  I have an awesome family to support me through all of this who have all been there every step of the way in some form or fashion.  I have friends that are bending over backwards to make this day special for me.  I have Josh who has been my rock, my support system, my everything.  I have a wonderful job that I absolutely love.  I just came out of orientation Sunday...I am officially on my own.  My first day was crazy and great.  I really do love it, and I know that I am blessed to have all of this in my life.

I thought about all of this Sunday night.  I worked all day Sunday, and after work I went to meet Josh at some friends' house about twenty minutes away.  I enjoyed the drive so really helped to enhance my perspective on all things life.  It reminded me of being back home in Newton.  When I was in Newton my car was my safe haven.  If I was having a bad day, if anything was going on in my life, if I just wanted to be alone to think I would get in my car and drive.  I only drove on backroads, the good ones...the ones that curve and curve and the gravel slowly turns to dirt.  The ones that have absolutely no cell phone towers, so you don't have to worry about anyone bothering you because you have no cell phone signal.  The ones where you can ride around blasting your radio and singing along and no one would ever see you, or you could ride around with tears flowing from your eyes and no one has to know.  The ones where all you are surrounded by is trees, rolling flatlands, and the Heavens.  That was my escape.  Sunday night was kind of like a mini-escape.  It wasn't the backroads of Mississippi, but it was a nice quiet stretch of roadway that helped to clear my head.  I needed was a nice refresher.

So tomorrow it is cleaning and preparing things before I have to get back to the daily grind of work Wednesday.  I hope to get all the bags packed and loaded in my car tomorrow.  I hope to do a lot of things.  But tonight I hope to rest easily and sleep peacefully.  I hope the hours seem longer and the dreams seem sweeter.  And I hope I wake up tomorrow raring to go with everything that is left to do.  Sadly this may be my last blog posting as Anne Claire Foshee.  I can see my last few days becoming very busy very quickly.  I'll have ample time after we get back from the honeymoon to catch you up on every detail of the wedding and honeymoon.  Until then it's hoping for great sleep!

Thursday, March 10, 2011

The serious countdown has begun

The wedding countdown is getting serious.  NINE days...almost eight at this point!  Where has the time gone?  I remember talking to Sally a little over a year ago, and we were both wishing we were married.  Now she is and has baby onboard, and I'm on the marriage cusp.

I met with the preacher today.  I think that made it feel even more real.  We stood in the church where we will be standing in nine days; he said some of the things he will be saying in nine days.  He talked about my dad walking me down the aisle and how he should stand to give me away in nine days.  I felt the tears welling up, but I fought them back...I may not be strong enough to fight them in nine days but today I was.

Thinking about how close the wedding is to being here makes me look back on how much has happened in the last year and a half since the engagement.  I didn't have a blog then to record those funny times...too bad too because it has really been something.

Getting engaged in the woods was something, but it was 100% Josh and I would have wanted nothing else.  First we picked a date...that was really tough.  I remember riding back from Mississippi with a calendar in hand scratching off days and months.  We had to work around my school schedule, hurricane season, Mardi Gras, and hunting season.  We originally planned to be married April 30th, but prior plans of my dads plus the realization that we could move it up to March changed our minds.  Two of our best friends got married March 20th last year...we almost have matching dates now!

Then the bridesmaids/groomsmen fiasco....originally we had 7 of we have 5 groomsmen and 6 bridesmaids.  We lost four and gained one...oh well it will all work out in the end (although I still have no clue as to which two girls will have to walk on either side of one groomsmen).

Picking a venue for the reception was relatively easy; although, I really wish we had done an all inclusive place.  At the time that wasn't possible because of our caterer...we changed caterers but it was too late to change venues...oh well again.  Finding a place to have the actual wedding ceremony was far less than easy.  It was going to be at the KC Hall where the reception is, but Kay Kay fought that and won...and now I am very happy that she forced strongly urged me to change my mind on that one.  Actually finding a church was one of the hardest ordeals of the whole planning process...every one we called was either booked, outrageously priced, or too small for our crowd.  Finally we found one that would take us, and although it is not the most outwardly pretty of all churches around it is still a church and that's all that matters.

Tons of other things have gone on with this wedding since that day I said, "yes"; the first day of the year of 2010.  We have planned, we have fought, we have laughed, and we have grown.  Now all the planning is done, and it is all starting to fall together.  It's scary and exciting at the same time.  Kay Kay called the other night and after we talked a little while she asked if I would do all this again.  I told her next time I am eloping.  I don't think she found the humor in my joke...she's still a little touchy when it comes to that.  When I was little I always said I didn't want to have a big wedding.  I thought the perfect wedding would be getting married in the back of the limo on the way to the airport to leave on the honeymoon; our parents could come and ham sandwiches would be served.  Now, even though it has been hectic and crazy, I am so grateful that I was able to experience this.  It is exactly what I wanted and exactly what I planned.  I'm happy we didn't elope, and I can't wait until the actual wedding day gets here.

It's funny because when I was little I thought I would be more excited about the honeymoon than anything.  Now that it is here, I don't even know if I want to go on the honeymoon.  Not that I don't want to go by any means, but I'm scared.  We are going on a 7 day Western Caribbean cruise.  Josh was dying to do it and I was indifferent, so we did it.  Now that it is almost here I am completely freaked out about it.  I'm scared.  I'm scared of being out on the open water in a boat.  I'm scared to be so far away with no way to return.  I'm scared of not being able to communicate with my family and friends for seven whole days.  Everyone reassures me that it will be wonderful.  People say the best thing about it is that you can't use your cell phone.  I'm still worried.  Plus what do I pack??  I started yesterday, but I don't even know where to begin.  Mark my words..I will have this whole house packed up by next week if no one supervises me.  I am a habitual over-packer...unless I'm not for some reason and then I am a careless under-packer.  Neither of these are what I hope to achieve for this trip.

As I get ready to drift off into dreamland, my head is heavy with thoughts of everything that needs to be done.  I work tomorrow...five more work days until wedding that is a scary thought!  Before this ninth day in the countdown becomes number eight, I better say good night and pick this up another day.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

A lazy Sunday is a terrible thing to waste

The wedding is getting closer.  I can feel it breathing down my neck as time quickly passes away.  I have never felt time move this quickly in my entire life.  I had so many things to do before the wedding, and somehow the time just got away from me before I got a chance to do them.  For now I'll blame that on graduating, take state boards, and starting a brand new job.

I was off work Friday...for the whole weekend really, but Friday was my day to get a lot of things done around the house.  The room we just painted and laid new flooring in needed the furniture moved back in and things organized.  That was my plan for the whole day.  Apparently, my stomach had other plans.  Enter the dreaded stomach virus.  I was so mad that it came on a day when I had so much to do and so many things planned.  I got nothing accomplished.  Josh and I had dinner plans....that didn't happen either unless you call him watching me eat a popsicle dinner!  He was a great nurse though...I'll spare you the details.  Even though I was mad to have wasted such a needed weekend, it was really better that it happened at a time when I didn't have to go into work.  I am also really grateful that this is not two weeks from now, and we are at wedding weekend with the stomach virus.  We can always thank God for the small things that could have been (and cross our fingers and pray that it doesn't happen to anyone else during that time)!

Saturday was a better day, but still not quite strong enough for food.  I did attempt a fajita...bad idea.  I was feeling fine as long as I didn't eat, so we went along with our day as planned.  It was our favorite night of Mardi Gras because one of Josh's friends has a shop along the parade route.  We always cook and hang out in the shop, and then we have front row seats when the parade passes.  Sadly, the parade was rained out.  We hope to make a parade today in Thibodaux, but we shall see!

As for the wedding, it is stressing me to be so close but at the same time I am ready for it to be here.  I don't know what I will do with myself once it's over...maybe sleep.

I am excited to know what it feels like to have a husband.  I know this is probably silly, but I feel like it will feel different to see my husband after work.  I feel like cooking supper for my husband will feel different than cooking supper for my boyfriend.  I feel like he will look different, and we will both instantly mature.  Not that I want anything at all to change with our relationship because it is pretty perfect the way it is.  I just feel like inside it will feel different...more real...more adult.  I guess only time will tell.

For now I have plenty to do so I had better get hoping.  A lazy Sunday is a terrible thing to waste.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Sleepin' easy

God answers prayers.  What else can I say?  I could end this post with just that, but I'll elaborate.

Today has been wonderful and exhausting.  I got a ton of things of those things being shopping for clothes to wear on the cruise.  I haven't been shopping in just doesn't thrill me (plus I'm cheap and I hate to spend money)...but today it was great fun and very uplifting!

We received some wonderful news today.  My Mimi got a great report back from the doctor today, and that made the day perfect all in itself.  This is something we have all prayed and prayed about.  Her strength and faith persevered as God shined through.  She is the strongest Christian woman I know and leads her life and her family in a way that I hope to one day be able to lead mine.  God blessed us all today with her excellent report!

But God didn't stop there.  He also sent us a perfect place for the rehearsal dinner.  It was Josh's idea to drive up to the middle of the fire station as their meeting was getting out last night.  We were sweaty from working out and looking rough.  I was game to go until I saw a familiar face...I tried to back out, but it was too late.  So we stopped and talked, networked a little, and asked around about places for a rehearsal dinner (and I may have squeezed in my most pitiful and desperate looking eyes)...he gave us a name and a number.  We got a call back today, went to see it this afternoon, put down a deposit, and it's ours!!  We have a place!  Not just any place, the PERFECT place!  I feel like a weight has been lifted.  Of course we had a back up plan...Josh's house...but the stress of getting it ready for that was almost too much for me to handle.  This is truly a blessing!

Josh and I have been working feverishly on his house.  I want it to be perfect when everyone comes to town.  I know it is a long drive for a lot of people, and I want them all to be able to get the full experience while they are all here and see everything including the house that we have been working so hard on!  Today we cleaned out the fish pond.  It felt good to be outside on such a gorgeous day.

All in all it has been a great day...much improved from the stresses of yesterday.  Everything always works itself out.  Tomorrow it's back to work, and tonight I'll sleep a lot easier!