Tuesday, December 31, 2013

2013: A Year in Review

2013 was one of the best years so far. Starting the year off in the Outer Banks with some great high school friends last New Years Eve was great.
The first few months of the year were full of plane tickets, new adventures, and lots of recruiting for AST.  I checked off Indiana, Minnesota, Kentucky, Louisiana, Arizona, and New York on my map of America! I even ventured North into Canada and crossed Niagara Falls of the bucket list and South to St. Lucia!

I recruited over 100 women to join different chapters of Alpha Sigma Tau.  My experience as an Educational Consultant came to a close in May after I installed our Epsilon Rho chapter at SUNY Geneseo.  Having the opportunity to educate women on Alpha Sigma Tau really put it into perspective that this sorority is more than just me.  It's more than just James Madison University.  We really are all over the world and are bound by ties that naught can sever.  Being a part of something that will make an impact on these young ladies lives forever was very powerful and something I will forever be grateful for.  

Tiffany Street, Kristin Walker, Chris Covington, our National VP's and President were all in attendance at USI's Installation
Ashley, Jenn, and I at SUNY Geneseo doing some recruiting!
I even tried my first "snowball" in Louisiana with these lovely ladies of Phi!
After some fun in May at JMU seeing one of our dear friend Bradley graduate, I headed home to embark on the next chapter of my life.  

I drove to North Carolina to pick up the newest addition to our little family, Stryker.  He was about 3 months old when we got him and as cute as can be.  We really did luck out with how awesome of a puppy he has been.  At 10 months old, he currently weigh around 70 pounds and is still growing! I am so fortunate to have found my second job since graduating as the Alumni Relations Coordinator at Norfolk Collegiate School.  How funny that they hire an alumnus for this job right?! It really has been a perfect fit for me.  I have great hours, work with great people, and get to work in the same place that has made me the person I am today.  

During all this time, I was working hard to plan the most beautiful day of my life. On September 28, 2013, D.J. and I were officially Mr. and Mrs. Brown! Since D.J. was gone for pretty much all of the planning, I was so glad I had my mom around to help me do all the cake tastings, pick out invitations, and figure out the seating plan! All in all, the wedding turned out just the way I had hoped it would! I never thought that I would marry a professional baseball player and could never think of what this life would be like.  Every day is something different  and the phrase "plan for the future" just isn't in our vocabulary (that's a hard one for me since I am a huge planner!) We may not be together for 6 months out of the year, but its what works for us. Having other girls in the same boat as me really makes it easier though (thanks Maria and Mikaela!) Hopefully the boys will all start together in Carolina this season and I will be able to make lots of trips down on the weekends!


No more than 48 hours after we tied the knot, D.J. and I closed on our first house together! It has been a work in progress, but it is our home and that's the most important part.
Be on the lookout in 2014 for a before and after blog post on the house!
2013 was nothing short of amazing. D.J. finished his first full year of professional baseball, we added Stryker to our family, got married, bought a house, celebrated marriages and engagements of our friends, welcomed new babies into our families, and have been able to enjoy the adventures together. Being a baseball wife is hard work, but seeing him on the mound living his dream makes it all worth it.  

Here's to another great year in 2014 as a baseball wife!

Monday, December 30, 2013

Merry Christmas

This Christmas was full of love and new traditions for us!  Since this was our first Christmas married, we did Christmas Eve Mass and Dinner with my family.  Church was scheduled to start at 4:00 but really started whenever it was full (which ended up being at 3:30!) After that we went home, took out Stryker and then we went over to Pappy and Bull's for Christmas Eve dinner.  It was different this year because none of her grandkids were there. It was full of neighbors and friends while we had delicious food, tasty punch, and a great celebrate of Christmas. 

Christmas morning was the first new tradition that we started.  Since this was our first Christmas in our new home and as a married couple, we woke up in our own house! I know, it sounds so simple, but it was different for both of our families since we were not waking up at our families house.  Santa came and gave us our stockings and then D.J. and I opened up the gifts from each other around 7:15.  After that, we went over to my families house and did Christmas with them.  Santa was extra generous this year and gave us some awesome gifts.  Nana, Anne, and Dave were there too as we opened up all our gifts.
Around 11 am. we went out to my cousins house to see what they got from Santa.  Seeing their little faces when they showed us what Santa brought was so awesome.  This year, giving gifts to D.J. was just so much fun.  Knowing that I am making him happy and giving him things that he needs makes me feel so happy! I loved being Santa for D.J., but I know being Santa for a little one is going to be so much fun!
Later that day, we decided to head up the road to D.J.'s families house as we surprised his family.  They were SHOCKED! We weren't supposed to head to see them until the 26th, but we thought it would be fun to go up early. We spent the weekend outside at the park, going to town, and just enjoying some family and friends at the annual Brown Holiday Christmas Party! Here is our weekend in pictures!

Stryker was so good with Myla!

Christmas this year was great and I loved being around so much family and friends.  Can't wait to ring in the New Year! 

Friday, December 20, 2013

#Flashback Friday: The Proposal

If you have not heard this story, I think it's safe to say our proposal story is quite funny. I had known we would be getting engaged in the next few months, but I had no idea it would be in August.  D.J. was flying home for his sisters wedding and I knew it couldn't be that weekend.. OBVIOUSLY!! Well, I was wrong. Here's how the story goes!

After I picked D.J. up in Richmond on Friday morning, we drove up to Fredericksburg for him to get his tux for the wedding.  I had asked to stop by the mall so we could go look at the rings again (not knowing he had already bought it!) He was so sweet and just said "babe stop thinking about all that, this is Amy's weekend".  Which was 100% true! I had told him whatever he does, he is not allowed to propose anytime that weekend.  Which is why I thought it would be in October when I went out to visit him in Arizona.  We got our nails done during the day (funny how he planned that one isn't it?!) and that night we had the rehearsal and the dinner and it was all so lovely! On the way home I had said "We should tell Amy and Brian to throw us the bouquet and garter!" Once I said that, D.J. knew exactly how he was going to pop the big question!

Saturday was full of love and wedding excitement! I was in charge of being Amy's right-hand woman and doing anything she needed. The ceremony was beautiful, the dances were great, and the food was delicious! Late into the night, Amy and Brian were getting ready for the bouquet and garter toss and I think the pictures below will speak for themselves!


Our first picture after we got engaged!
Needless to say, I was shocked! Everyone was in on it including the bride and groom! I felt terrible for doing that, but Amy said she wouldn't have had it any other way! I am so thankful that we got to share such a special day with them! 8.18.12.

Thursday, December 19, 2013

#tbt: The Engagement Photos

Since I was not a big blogger at the time we got engaged, I have decided to do a few posts about everything leading up to the wedding.  It has officially been a full year ago since we took these so here is the story on our Engagement Photos.  

We knew from the day we got engaged that Susan Lines would take our photos.  She is a beautiful and talented friend of ours that so graciously said yes to taking our pictures.  Susan has known D.J. since he was a little freshman at JMU so it was surreal for her to be taking his engagement photos! We decided that the best time to get together would be over Thanksgiving break.  Just like we knew Susan would take our pictures, we knew she would be taking them at one of our most memorable locations- James Madison University in the heart of the Shenandoah Mountains. 

Pictures on the quad was a must.  Although neither of us were ever on the quad for class, it is still an important part of JMU!

This is seriously one of my favorites.  I can't help but notice how blue my eyes are!

Must have a picture kissing on the "Kissing Rock"
If you don't know, I was the first girl D.J. met at JMU. I was an Orientation Guide at the time and with a little bit of luck from JMU, it was fate that I got Ikenberry that August of 2009.  From day one I thought for sure that D.J. and Billy (the other baseball player I had) would be the hardest to get to participate. Ironically, it was the opposite- they were doing everything..although I think this was because D.J. had a little crush ;).  So it was a no-brainer that we had to take a few pictures back at our old stomping ground!

The railroad tracks don't have too much significance to us, but I always wanted to take pictures on there... so we did! I am pretty sure Susan was thinking this chick is crazy for wanting to take so many different pictures, but in the end I couldn't have been happier with the way they turned out.  

Last but not least was the baseball field.  We had seen a friend of D.J.'s take pictures on the field a few years before we got engaged and there was no option but to follow suit!

We were so lucky to get Susan to shoot our engagement photos.  After our shoot, Susan became pretty popular for her photo shoot for Megan and John!

You can read the full post from our engagement photo shoot with Susan Lines Photography here.