Thursday, December 30, 2010

Short hair!

I have never had hair this short, but I love it even more than I thought I would! This afternoon I cut about 11 inches off of my hair to donate to Locks of Love. I showed my girl Chelsea the photos I posted this morning and she gave me an adorable cut. The pictures really don't do it justice. Without further adieu...

Hair Before...

Hair After!

I think it's much more sophisticated and edgy. That's a terrible photo of the back, but it's a bit shorter in the back than the front. I can't stop playing with it!

Christmas weekend recap

There's not much to say about Christmas 2010. Not that it wasn't great... it was just a low key holiday spent with family. James' parents came over on Christmas Eve for dinner. We gave his mom an album of our wedding that I made on Shutterfly (I'm planning to make a larger one for us that I'll share here). She gave me a super cute scarf that I love.

Early the next morning we set out for my parents' house where my whole immediate family plus grandma and my aunt and uncle joined for dinner.

We also did our secret santa gift exchange... James and I had each other and managed to keep that a secret for the past month! I got him a few t-shirts and DVDs he asked for - Avatar and the World Series 2010 8-disc set.

He got me just what I asked for - a long necklace and Sliding Into Home by Kendra Wilkinson (I already finished it!). Plus a cute little cheese server set.

I stayed at my parents' house until Monday to help them pack... they're moving closer to me! They've always lived about 100 miles away, and now they'll be just about 20. My dad has a great new job in this area. This weekend we'll be helping with the big move.

Making the cut for Locks of Love

To be honest with you, I never really felt a strong connection to Locks of Love and similar hair donation organizations. It seemed like a kind of superficial cause - there are people who are hungry and in pain, who cares about having pretty hair?

However, several months ago I realized that my hair was getting super long. I've been growing it long for years, but I started to think it might be fun to change it up. I posted this back in June with some ideas and decided that I love this cut:

And at that point I realized that if I'm going to cut that much hair off, I might as well donate it to a good cause! I checked out the Locks of Love website and found that the longest layer of your hair must be a minimum of 10 inches for them to accept it. I had my friend measure it for me and I made that easily (I wanted it to still be at least shoulder length).

From the FAQ:
Most of the children who receive hairpieces from Locks of Love are little girls, and most want long hair.
That quote convinced me to do this! I was afraid of getting a hair cut that I didn't like, but it will mean so much more to the child who receives a hair piece, helping his or her confidence.

Soooo.... what this post has been leading up to is the fact that I have an appointment to cut my hair this afternoon! I admit that I'm nervous... I'll report back with a picture soon!!

Monday, December 27, 2010

2010 in review

I thought it would be fun to look back at everything that happened in 2010 as it comes to a close. It was a great year!!


Celebrated the start of a new year with friends, at a party that's now an annual tradition.

Went to Santa Cruz to plan our wedding.


I went wine tasting with some of the ladies in family.


Another Santa Cruz trip (There were a lot this year. I'm tired of that drive!).



I left for Ireland a few days before the month ended!  


The first half of this month was spent in Italy, Greece and Ireland.

When I returned to the states, I celebrated my 24th birthday.


Went flying in my father in law's little plane, then watched the fireworks for the 4th.

Celebrated 4 years together (Well we didn't really celebrate, but we passed that milestone).

James turned 31.


My sisters and mom threw an awesome bridal shower for me.

Went to Santa Cruz one last time before the wedding and had our final meetings.


We got married!! About 65 of our closest friends and family joined us in Santa Cruz for the most beautiful day.

We stayed in Santa Cruz for our mini-moon


I had a second bridal shower thrown by the ladies at my mom's church.

James was a groomsman in a friend's wedding.


Were busy with friends every weekend of October, November and December.

Hosted Thanksgiving as newlyweds.


Went to my office's Christmas party.

Celebrated Christmas with family.

I'm looking forward to all that 2011 will bring!

Friday, December 24, 2010

I don't care what your mama says, Christmas time is here!

Anyone familiar with this song? I woke up singing it this morning. So funny! (It doesn't start until :18 in)

Today I'm working a half day, then will be off for a whole week!! I'm so excited for this "Christmas break" - my first one since my last year of college three years ago!

Tonight we're having James' mom over for Christmas Eve dinner. It's a simple menu but it's going to be good! I'm making ham, caesar salad, and creme brulee for dessert (which I've never made before)! I also picked up some King's Hawaiian rolls :) I didn't want to go all out because it's only the three of us, and we'd be drowning in leftovers.

Rita's bringing Filipino food - I think fried rice and lumpia.

Tomorrow morning we're off to my parents' house! For the rest of the week I'm thrilled at the idea of relaxing and getting things done around the house. Happy holidays to you and yours!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Baked Potato Soup

You'll love this, I promise. We had it for dinner the last two nights and I already want to make another batch because I love it so!

Image from here. I took a picture of my creation, but it was kind of ugly and not representative of the deliciousness that it truly is.

  • 5 lbs. potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-2 inch pieces
  • 1 small onion, minced
  • 4 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon seasoned salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 2 quarts (64 oz.) chicken broth
    2 (8 oz.) packages of cream cheese (I think low fat tastes the same so I go with that... I'd also like to try fat free sour cream but haven't yet)
  1. Use a 6 quart slow cooker. Or half it if you only have a 3 quart slow cooker.
  2. Put the diced potatoes, onion, garlic, all seasonings and chicken broth into the stoneware.
  3. Cover and cook on low for 8 hours, or on high for 4 hours.
  4. Once the potatoes are tender, mash them in the soup with a potato masher.
  5. Crumble in the cream cheese, stir, and cook on high for 30 minutes (until the cream cheese is dissolved).
  6. Serve and enjoy! Garnish the soup with green onions, and if you want to be really unhealthy/delicious about it - crumbled bacon.
Recipe from here.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Our wedding day: The ceremony (Part 2)

See part 1 of our ceremony here.

After Linae's reading, Mark continued:

Chardonnay and James I also know you trust one another, hold the same values, and know how to care for and depend on one another. Every great love begins with friendship. But what did they see in each other that lead these two friends to marriage?

Chardonnay had met a big hearted generous man who treats her and those he loves with consideration and understanding. A romantic man with a passion for life, with a great sense of humor and but who also knows how to be serious. A man she greatly loves and respects because of his faithfulness, integrity, and strength.

James had met beautiful and honest woman {except here he accidentally said "man," which was funny - the picture of me laughing above is at that moment} who understood him, shares his values and who fully accepts and loves him for who he is. Chardonnay has an amazing combination of compassion, understanding, and trustworthiness. She brings joy and beauty to her family and to the world around her but gives her very best to the one she loves the most.

You have heard it said behind every successful man there is a supportive wife. But with Chardonnay and James it is more than that. Neither is behind the other. Rather, beside each other, they will walk together supporting and encouraging one another. Their mutual support of each other’s dreams began through their trust of and commitment to one another.

We all rejoice with you today to see the love, respect, patience, kindness and commitment in your lives. And we have the highest hopes for you as you set out on your journey together and to see the places you will go.

As we just heard the journey is filled with great sights and high heights but also weather that is fowl, enemies that prowl and Hakken-Kraks that howl. But that is okay. Because, despite every obstacle, you two will accomplish wonderful things.

Despite the hard times you have a great future together because you will face that future together.

Chardonnay and James from this day on you will face the world, celebrate accomplishments, withstand pressure, endure difficulty, enjoy the passing of time as and commemorate life’s milestones together as husband and wife.

At this point we turned toward each other to hold hands, and I gave my bouquet to Rose.

You stand here today not only to make a promise to each other, but to declare to the world your intent to stand by each others’ side in marriage.

James, do you choose Chardonnay to be your wife and partner for the rest of your lives, to support and accept her in good times and bad? Do you promise to always remain honest, loving, and faithful to her?

I do.

James if it is your intention to be married to Chardonnay then please read your letter which you have kept secret until this moment.

{Yes, we had secret vows that we shared with no one, which I love. A lot of my friends told me that James' made them cry big time. They were so perfect.}

To my wife, my constant friend, my faithful partner and my love from this day forward.

I will cherish our union and love you more each day than I did the day before.

I will trust you and respect you, laugh with you and cry with you, loving you faithfully regardless of the obstacles we may face together.

I promise to give you the best of myself and ask of you no more than you can give.

I promise to accept you for who you are.

And finally, I promise to love you in good times and bad, with all that I have to give and all I feel inside in the only way I know how - completely and forever.

{OMG is my husband not the sweetest?! I still have that handwritten paper he read his vows from, and I'll cherish it forever!}

Chardonnay, do you choose James to be your husband and partner for the rest of your lives, to support and accept him in good times and bad? Do you promise to always remain honest, loving, and faithful to him?

I do.

Chardonnay, if it is your intention to be married to James, then please read your letter which you have kept secret until this moment.

{I wrote my vows months before but was continually making changes until the week of the wedding. I cried when I wrote them!}

James, I want you to always know how happy and thankful I am to have you as my friend, partner and now finally my husband.

Since the day you came into my life you've treated me with respect and compassion, and never failed to make me laugh.

The support and love I receive from you is something I vow to return every day of our marriage and life.

I promise to love you with my whole self for the rest of our lives, through our joys, changes, sorrows and challenges.

I accept you for who you are and will encourage your dreams. I will share my love with you without hesitation, and vow to always be honest and faithful to you.

I will always remember the vows we exchange today and strive to keep our relationship happy and healthy as we grow together and face exciting and sometimes difficult experiences.

I will laugh with you and cry with you, and always hold your hand. I love you.

The best man, Bob (who is James' stepdad), gave Mark our wedding bands.

In every culture in the world rings of some sort are exchanged in marriage.

I know that both of you are going to be very proud to wear these rings. They communicate to the whole world that you already have a life long covenant with another. That you are taken and off limits.

Wear this ring as a reminder of the vows you have just taken and as a shield protecting the sanctity of this marriage. James please repeat after me as you place this ring on Chardonnay's finger.

I, James K,
take you, Chardonnay P
to be my wife

to share my friendship and support
and to be loyal to you
for the rest of my life.

I give you this ring
as a physical reminder
of my unconditional love for you.

I ask that you wear it always
and remember the vows we have shared today.

Chardonnay please repeat after me as you place this ring on James' finger.

I, Chardonnay P,
take you, James K
to be my husband

to share my friendship and support
and to be loyal to you
for the rest of my life.

I give you this ring
as a physical reminder
of my unconditional love for you.

I ask that you wear it always
and remember the vows we have shared today.

I’d like to conclude your marriage ceremony with an Apache Native American wedding blessing.

Now you will feel no rain,
for each of you will be shelter for the other.
Now you will feel no cold,
for each of you will be warmth for the other.
Now there is no more loneliness,
for each of you will be companion to the other.
Now you are two persons,
but there is one life before you.
May your days be good and long upon the earth.

James and Chardonnay in the sight of these witnesses you have exchanged vows and rings. You have professed your love and dedicated your lives to one another. It is my honor and my delight to now pronounce you, husband and wife.

You may now kiss each other!

Ladies and Gentlemen, it is my pleasure to introduce to you for the very first time Mr. and Mrs. K!

For the recessional, I asked the guitarist to play an instrumental version of Bob Marley's "High Tide or Low Tide," which is what my blog is named for! Again, I didn't hear any of it because I was a little distracted!

The introduction of our ceremony was written by our officiant, whose website you can visit here. James and I wrote the vows portions of the ceremony together. You can visit our guitarist's website here. Photos are by Photography by Tammynize - view her website here. Visit our day-of coordinator's website here.