Sunday, December 30, 2012

best year ever

What a year. Probably the best I have ever had. 2013 better have some awesome things in store for it to even compete with this year!
2012 was filled with so many blessings, and I just can’t believe how many good things happened to me this year. I am so blessed. 
 I love going back and reading my post from last year and seeing all the good things that happened in 2011 and throughout 2012, and I also love reading what I expected to happen this year, and seeing what ended up happening instead. In my first post of 2012, I was expecting the first half of my year to be very busy and contain the best events, but to be honest, the entire year has been so amazing, and some amazing things have happened all year long.
In January, wedding planning went into full force with only 3 months left until the wedding. My mom and sister came over almost every Monday to help work on wedding crafts and hang out. I enjoyed this so much as it was a chance for some quality time together. The day after the Wedding, Danika stated that she didn’t feel like she did much because Bianca was the MC (so Bianca was indeed very busy on the day of my wedding), and Danika almost didn’t feel like the she should have been the Matron of Honour, but I reminded her, that out of all my bridesmaids, she did the most, just that all her duties that I required from her took place before the big day.

Nick and I got to do our first walk through in February, and it was just so exciting to see our first place come together. I still need to do a blog post and take pictures of our home, but just keep forgetting about it. So far I love our home. It’s perfect for just the two of us, and we have a little room to grow. We plan on living here for about another 4 years, and we’ll probably have our first baby here. I love the fact that I now have garage parking and 2 walk-in closets to fill!

March was a busy month as the wedding was coming up quick, and there were lots to do. We found out Nick passed the entrance exam and would be offered a seat at PMA which was a huge deal. Nick really wanted to go to PMA as they are a much better school and it would work better with our schedule. Other aspects are, it allows Nick the chance to still work a lot while in school, which means our budget wouldn’t be as tight, and instead of it being a 2 year coarse at SAIT and not completing the program until summer 2014, Nick is expecting to be done by the end of next summer (2013).
I also had my Bridal Shower and Bachelorette at the end of March. My lovely sister put on a very cute Tea Party Bridal Shower. She made the cutest fascinators for all the guests to wear and some fun activities planned. It was also a pampered chef party, so people brought me money instead of gifts, and I was able to outfit my entire kitchen by the end of the party!

Bianca, Crystal and Bev planned my amazing Bachelorette the weekend after, and it was such a great night. I got to be surrounded by my favourite girls, and we had a lot of fun. We started at Bianca’s house and spent a couple of hours just getting ready. We then headed to Chinook Mall for a photography session. We then proceeded to Smuggler’s for what I may say, one of the most scandalous dinner’s I ever had. Let’s just say that Danika knows how to have a good time and our waiter was such a good sport!

Finally April came, and everything I planned (my 12 page wedding itinerary definitely helped) so hard for was finally happening! Sandy (Nick’s mom) planned an awesome Rehearsal Dinner. Due to Nick’s love of Hawaiian Shirts and my hate of them, one joke lead to another, and the idea of a Hawaiian Luau for the Rehearsal Dinner was born. The food was delicious and it was so great to have all of our close friends and family under one roof. It was held at Ray’s (Nick’s dad) store, and I seriously felt like I was stepping into a little hut in Hawaii. Kris (Nick’s brother) greeted everyone at the door with a lai and all the tables were decorated with in a Hawaiian theme. Food was so amazing, that we joke it was better than the food served at our wedding.

Obviously the next day was our wedding. I barely slept the night before as I had so much running through my mind. We started the day at the salon all getting our hair and make-up done and I ordered everyone lunch. Everyone was surprised on how calm I was, but I planned this wedding to a T. I made sure everyone knew what they were doing, and double checked with all of my vender’s weeks prior to make sure everything was good to go. Nick called me that morning and finally admitted he was actually a little nervous and a little excited. It was great to hear that, because during our entire engagement, whenever I asked him if he was excited about the wedding, he would say “Well I’m happy that we’re getting married”.
The wedding went off without a hitch. I think the only thing that caused a little bit of a distraction was my grandma and the kids getting into the Sparklers early in the evening, so Bianca had to run and put them away and only bring them out moments before our send off. It’s fun to laugh about it now. Otherwise, everything was perfect and as I planned it. The ceremony was short and sweet, and our Bridal Party was awesome. They all made sure our day was special and did their duties well. Our photos turned out fantastic, and I adore our flowers. The food was great and the cake was beautiful. The Reception was such a great evening. We received so many heartfelt toasts, and I will never forget Kris’s loving speech and the song my sister sang to us. The Band was such a hit and we had people on the dance floor all night long. The Sparkler Send off went above my expectations, as the group also sang us a song as we headed off. In all I couldn’t have asked for anything else, and there really isn’t anything I would change.

A few days after our wedding we left for Huatulco, Mexico for our honeymoon! It was a great week and we stayed in such a beautiful resort. It was a blast and I was able to finally relax after a few busy months. Nick was a little anxious to get home because we were in the final stages of getting possession of our house and there were some papers that still needed to be signed.
When we got back from our honeymoon we had a big “Shipwrecked” birthday party for my sister Danika and friend Bev at Bianca’s house. It was such a fun party, as we had everyone come dressed up shipwrecked theme (pirates, sailors, tacky tourist, Hawaiian, etc). It was a great night and a birthday I hope that both girls will remember for a long time.

Nick and I finally got to move into our new home on May 5. It was so exciting to move in, and I just love our first place. It’s perfect for the two of us, with just a little room to grow. What I love most about our new place is having a garage to park in! No more scraping snow off my car at 6:30 in the morning. My other favourite thing is my 2 walk-in closets. As a wedding gift, my dad installed custom shelving inside of them, and I love how much room I have to store all of my clothes!

In July we celebrated Nick’s 24th birthday, and we had both of our families over to celebrate, as well as to see the new place. We had a little BBQ, and I baked the cake myself. The weekend after, we went to the 100th Calgary Stampede with my family and a few friends. I made a mistake and got tickets to the rodeo instead of the Grandstand show, but we ended up just getting standing room tickets for the Grandstand, and for the first time I got to watch the rodeo live. Also, even though my feet were killing me by the end of the night, we had the best view of the Grandstand show and it was awesome to see everything up close. Everything ended up working out for the best, and we had a blast at the stampede.  At the end of July Nick started school, and we finally felt ready to have a little housewarming party. We had a lot of people show up to the housewarming party, and it was a great night. On the last weekend of July, Nick and I went down to Cardston together and attended the Temple for the first time as a couple. We just did a simple baptismal session and spent the day together. It was so nice to go down, just the two of us and spend some quality time together. It also made me a little excited for the opening of the Calgary Temple and for us to be sealed together.

August slowed down a little bit for us. We adopted a kitten from the SPCA and named him Freddy. He is quite the character in our home and keeps us all on our toes – including Shmoo. We’ve had to “child proof” our home already, as eating Nick’s plants and playing with new toilet paper rolls are his favourite things to do.

Evil Dead – The Musical was playing in Calgary, and Nick really wanted to go. He bought the tickets and asked to see if anyone else wanted to go and it ended up being one of the best nights of the summer. It was such a great idea and it was great for him to plan something for once – though it was my idea to go for dinner before the show ;)

At the end of August, I received a phone call from my sister. She informed me that she was pregnant, and that I was going to become an Aunt. At first I didn’t know what to think. Like I was happy, but they weren’t trying for a baby, and it wasn’t in the plans for a few more years, and I also didn’t think they were ready. As I have learned though, sometimes things don’t go as planned, and now I couldn’t be happier. I am so happy for them, and I can’t wait!

In September I went to X-Fest here in Calgary with some of my favourite people. We started the day at Bianca’s store, and grabbed a bite to eat at the food trucks. We then headed downtown to Fort Calgary, where X-Fest was being held. It was me, Bianca, Kurtis, Crystal, Andrew, and Sean that all went, and it was a great day. There were even more food trucks at X-Fest, and probably the best part of the night was when Linkin Park came on stage and did a killer performance. The next day I went to Fairmont and Invermere with my mom and sister for a girl’s weekend away. It was the first time that we have ever done this, but I am very sure that this will become an annual thing! When I got back, I got one of the best texts ever. Crystal texted me a picture of her hand with an engagement ring on it. Andrew finally did it! He proposed to Crystal, and they’re getting married in May 2013. I am super excited for their wedding, and it’s one of the things I am most looking forward to in the New Year.

October was a super busy month for me, and I felt like I had no time for anything. It was my parent’s 25th Wedding Anniversary, and I decided to plan a surprise party from them. It was a lot of work, and I am glad that I probably won’t have to plan another one for a long time. The weekend then continued with Thanksgiving dinners with both the Walford’s and the Irvine’s, and lots of eating!
A few weeks later Nick and I were asked to give talks in church, and let’s just say that I didn’t think I would ever see the day where I would see Nick standing up at the pulpit giving a talk. It brought a little tear to my eye, and it just amazes how much Nick surprises me sometimes.
October was also a special month for another reason. The Calgary Alberta Temple was finally completed and I was able to take Nick’s mom and brother through the open house. It made me so happy to have the opportunity to take them through, and I am glad that they got to see the rooms that Nick and I will be going through in January. The temple was dedicated on October 28th, and it was such a special moment to see it dedicated with Nick standing beside me.
November did not slow down for me. With it being the month before Christmas, and also containing my birthday, November tends to fill up with lots of activities very quickly. First it was Bianca’s birthday, and we celebrated at one of our favourite restaurants Tango. That same day we found out the gender of my sister’s baby. It’s a girl! I am super excited to have a little niece, and I was definitely hoping it was be a girl.

Later that week, we had a birthday party at The Trop for both Bianca and I with all of our close friends. It was a great night, and I love my friends so much. Next year though, I think I would like to just host it at one of our houses, because making a reservation for so many people at a restaurant is such a pain in the butt! The next week was filled with dinners with both of my families and of course my husband Nick. Finally I had dinner with my girls at 80th and Ivy, and it was one of the best nights this year.
December arrived, and don't think I had a moment to breath until Boxing Day. I started the month with going to Operation Christmas Child with the New Brighton Relief Society. The last time I sorted through boxes was back in High School when I went with my Social Studies class, and both times have been really fun. Speaking of Relief society, I finally feel Nick and I are starting to feel like we belong in our ward. It always takes a little while to get to know people, but we’re are starting to make some good friends and am excited to see what happens in the New Year. The day after the Operation Christmas Child activity, was our Ward Christmas Party. What a great evening! They did such a great job and the food was fantastic. I loved that Nick and I were able to go and see some of our new friends. We ended up staying pretty late, just talking with people.
The next night was finally the Wakeford Christmas Party (for more details click here and here). This is a party that we look forward to every year, and is so much fun. So glad that my in-laws and friends could come and have a good time. 
A few days later we had our 2nd Annual Girls, which I won’t forget for a long time. I loved getting our hair done together and running around Calgary taking pictures. Night ended at Rouge in Inglewood enjoying the Chefs Menu and lots of girl talk. Love my girls and spending a great evening with these ladies. It’s one for the books! 
Later that week we celebrated Crystal’s birthday at Bianca’s house. It was a low key night with some leftover food from the Christmas Party and bored games. Hope she had an awesome birthday (her last as a single girl), and I am so excited for her in the upcoming year.

Finally the Christmas dinners began. Nick and I started at his Aunt Debbie’s house for the extended family dinner. We did a $50 gift exchange, and I ended up with an ice cream maker! The weekend after we had dinner with Nick’s family again, but this time we kept it smaller.
On Sunday December 23, we had my parent, grandparents, Danika, Chad and Sandy (Nick’s mom) join us at our ward to watch Nick get ordained as an Elder. Such a great moment, and I feel even more blessed. After church we invited everyone back to our house for yet another dinner. 

Monday was Christmas Eve, and we usually spend it with my family. Nick and I pick up Bianca, and we headed out to Okotoks. We had supper and played some games. Nick and I won both rounds of pounce and then we all opened a few family gifts.
Christmas morning we slept in very late because Nick was going to work the night shift and needed to sleep in as late as possible. Bianca came over just before noon, and we had a cinnamon waffles, bacon and eggs. We then opened the rest of our presents and spent the day relaxing and being a little lazy. It was kind of nice to have the day to ourselves and keep things simple. After a very busy year, we needed a little “us” time.
Overall, 2012  has been a fantastic year full of so many events, and I am thankful for all of my friends and family. Here’s to 2012, and may 2013 be just as great!

Friday, December 28, 2012

Top 12 Moments of 2012

So I started doing this on my Instagram account, and decided that I should share this on my blog as well. With 2012 ending, I want to share what I thought were my best moments of the year. When I first started making out a list, I ended up with like over 20 moments that I thought were special. I really wanted to keep it to 12 for 2012, and I found it really hard to narrow it done. Anyways, here is my top 12 moments of 2012:

The 100th Calgary Stampede
This year was the 100th Anniversary of the Calgary Stampede and I was able to attend with my family and a few close friends. This was also the first year that I got to see the Rodeo live, as well as the Grandstand Show from the standing section. It was just a great day. My favorite part has got to be seeing Paul Brandt singing and flying above the Grandstand crowd!

 Shipwrecked Party
This year we combined my sisters and bestfriend Bev’s birthday (they both were born on April 26), and we decided to have one giant party. The Wakeford sisters came up with the theme of Shipwrecked, and the planning began. I went as a Hawaiian Girl, and Nick went as a Tacky Tourist. Truly a fun night, and I hope both girls had a awesome birthday!

Rehearsal Dinner 
The evening before our wedding, Nick’s family put on a fabulous rehearsal dinner for us. We came up with a Hawaiian Theme because of Nick’s love of Hawaiian shirts, and my hate for them. It has been a running joke within our family, so it became the theme of the rehearsal dinner. Nick’s family made an awesome dinner, and the place was stunning. They decorated it so well. It was a fun night, and I really felt like I was in Hawaii.

Our First Home
Buying and moving into our very first house is a huge accomplishment for us. It was so exciting to watch our house being built and make decisions like what colour of hardwood or quartz to have installed. We got possession on May 4th, and we slept on the floor of our master bedroom that same night. The next day we moved in, and since have had fun buying furniture and d├ęcor to make it feel like our home. Love it so much, and it’s perfect for the two of us.

Housewarming Party
So after moving into our house, I decided that we needed to throw a party for the occasion. We didn’t do it right away, because I wanted to wait till I felt like our place was ready enough to have people over. I think because it was our first place, that it took us a few months to get everything set up to the point that we were satisfied with people seeing it. We invited lots of people, and though I never expect everyone to come, it really felt like everyone did come. We had about 30 people come over, and our house was really full. Great night, and I really feel like we have some awesome friends. 

Parents 25th Anniversary
Back in August I was on the treadmill thinking about my birthday, and thought about the fact that I was turning 24. All of a sudden I stopped and realized that if I was turning 24, then my parents were going to be celebrating their 25th Anniversary! Quickly I decided that I had to do something, and I called up my sister to talk over some ideas. We ended up booking the room at Ric’s Grill downtown Calgary, and invited all of my parents close friends and some of our close family. I picked out the menu, bought some balloons, hired a photographer (of course I choose Jennie), and made a quick slideshow. I think this was the first time in a very long time that my parents had the spotlight on them, and I really think they felt special – which is what I wanted to achieve in the end. It was a great night, and I just love my family so much. 

  Bridal Shower
My lovely sister of mine put on a beautiful bridal shower for me, and it was so great to be surrounded by my closest girlfriends and family. Danika made it Tea Themed due to my request, and she did an outstanding job. I still love our little teacup fascinators. Thanks to everyone who came, and because of you, I have am almost decked out kitchen!

 Wakeford Christmas Party 
One of my favourite parties of the year! I seriously look forward to this party all year long, and this year was no exception. Bianca and Crystal outdid themselves again and put on an awesome party. Such a fun night with some great people.

Annual Girl's Christmas 
Instead of getting gift for each other, me and my best girlfriends get together and create a special moment instead. This year we started at Butter Beauty Parlour getting our hair done. We then ran around Calgary taking pictures and ended up at Rouge Restaurant in Inglewood for a fabulous dinner and girl talk. A seriously fun night with such pretty girls.  

My Bachelorette 
My bachelorette just reaffirms that I have some awesome friends. Crystal, Bianca, and Bev planned an awesome bachelorette with an evening completely planned. I have to say that my Bachelorette blog post is my most ever read post to date with over 200 views. This is probably because we are all looking so hot and having such a blast. Thanks to my girls for planning a night I won’t ever forget and being there for me during my special moment. 

If my honeymoon was my number two, then I am sure you can guess what my number 1 is. Anywho, my honeymoon was awesome.  It was great to take a break and get away with my new hubby in Mexico. We stayed a beautiful resort in Huatulco, and just enjoyed the sun and sand. Can’t wait to take another vacation with Nick, but I think it’ll have to wait until the end of next year when Nick is done school. Oh well.

Wedding Day 
This one was a no brainer. Marrying my bestfriend was the best day of my life. I feel so blessed to be married to this handsome and amazing guy. Every day I realize just how lucky I am to have him in my life. He really goes out of his way to make me happy and is such an awesome husband. He works so hard so we can accomplish our goals, and love that I get to spend my life with him. I can’t wait to be sealed to him on January 19, 2013 and I only hope that I can be the wife that he deserves.
My Wedding Day was so special. Everything went according to plan, and so many people have complimented me on how great our wedding was. I felt so special to be surrounded by all of our close friends and family, and am ever grateful.