Tuesday, May 27, 2014

The Last One...

Right now I'm sitting in the living room of my new apartment with one of my best friends sitting in my eye line at the table putting a bouquet together, I have my cousin sitting next to me on the couch and another girlfriend sitting across from me. We are all talking about the fact that I, Julia Sanders, am getting married tomorrow.
When I started this blog it was to tell all the stories I've experienced in my dating life because it was just so laughable. I started this blog with so many stories already in mind and acquired so many more throughout the last 4 years.
I started this blog at 26 always thinking, "I'll probably get married in the next year or so."
Throughout my dating life, I was always told... "one day..."
"One day someone will come around and change everything..."
"One day it will be different"
"One day it will be worth it"
"One day you'll find someone who appreciates you"
"One day... one day... one day"
I learned to despise those words. Ironically, before I loathed them, I wrote a song with those words being the main theme.
"They say hold on, just be strong, your day will come
They tell me that
One day, it will be better
One day, it will be time
Someone will heal all your heartache
Someone will finally find you"
October 4th was that one day. October 4th I met the guy that would change everything. One day, everything was different.
Tomorrow that one day will change my life.
People keep telling me that I am oddly calm, disturblingly so. All I can say is the girl that has been writing this blog all this time, is finding it really difficult to believe that this day has come.
This will be my last post on this blog. This is my single life blog and tomorrow I will be Julia Halls and will have to share my blonde moments and ridiculous stories that I acquire as a wife. I have no doubt there will be plenty.
It's bittersweet to close this chapter of my life. It's been a good ride, but I'm so excited to start a new one.
I wrote a song that I'll sing for Matt at our luncheon tomorrow. I'm quite certain he won't read this blog prior to that so I'll put the lyrics here.

They said one day my love would come
I've waited to see that through
Looking at you I realize
That I have been waiting for you

I've wondered my life how he would be
The one who would love me true
So many years have shown me, my dear
That I have been waiting for you

Each time my heart would break again
I'd pray that you were near
I couldn't have hoped for anything more
My Love, you're finally here

So take my hand and never let go
I'm giving my heart to you
All of our lives I'll never forget
That I had been waiting for you.
I've been waiting for you!

Thursday, April 10, 2014


I can hardly contain my excitement for tomorrow. Tomorrow I get to go home for, 2 bridal showers and a party with some friends, A meeting with the reception center, getting my bridals taken, a baby blessing AND my niece's birthday party.

Home... The place where my family is. The place where I grew up. The place such a big part of me still lives.

When I moved to Arizona and for about the first 10 months I was here, oh how I longed for home. I wasn't happy here, I was making the best of a situation that I knew was right. I missed having people, I missed being with my family, I missed knowing where everything is and the stinkin number system for addresses that is so much easier than having to memorize street names. I never went longer than 2 months without going home, and almost as soon as I got back to AZ I was planning my next trip out there. Arizona was very temporary in my mind.

Then I met a boy and fell in love. Tomorrow I head home and realized it's been nearly 4 months since I've been home. That is the longest I have ever been away from home. Even when I lived in Hawaii I wasn't gone this long. Of course I miss my family, but that longing to go home has been replaced with contentment in being here. That sadness and lack of understanding as to why I am here has been replaced with love and complete humility to realize this really was all divine intervention.

I'm sad to realize that my trips home will become fewer and farther between, but kind of relieved to know that it's because I am happier here now. I have found someone to fill such a huge void. One person makes being away from all of that, worth it. It's amazing the difference one person can make, and it's even more amazing how it can all just be there all of the sudden. All of a sudden I'm not thinking about "home" all the time, but instead thinking about what our future here will hold. All of a sudden I realize I'm not sad anymore, but instead incredibly happy. All of a sudden, Arizona is becoming my home.

There is a song that perfectly explains what I feel Matt's roll in this is. Home, by Phillip Phillips...

Hold on, to me as we go
As we roll down this unfamiliar road
And although this wave is stringing us along
Just know you're not alone
Cause I'm gonna make this place your home

Settle down, it'll all be clear
Don't pay no mind to the demons
They fill you with fear
The trouble it might drag you down
You get lost, you can always be found

Just know you're not alone
Cause I'm gonna make this place your home.

Monday, March 17, 2014

Half way there...

Today is the half way point in mine and Matt's engagement. We got engaged, 2 months ago tomorrow and get married in two months from today.
Have Done:
Wedding dress, bought
Matt's suit, bought
Engagements, taken
Venue, booked
Invitations, ordered
Guest List, finalized (after much stress)
Honeymoon, booked

To do:
Dress is being hemmed
Matt needs a tie
Bridals (in Utah)
Pick a photographer
Pick food for luncheon
Hair and makeup trial runs
Send invites
Get wedding license

It's crazy to think that 2 months has already passed since we got engaged, but at the same time having 2 months left seems like forever. I keep telling Matt, "think of it this way, when we first started talking about getting married we said March, and at that point 2 months seemed SO SOON!" It doesn't matter it still feels like it's never going to come. It doesn't help that if we got married when we originally said, we would have gotten married last week. I tell Matt though, if we would have stayed with March I would have been a bridezilla the whole time. I don't do well with stress and I'm sorry to say I don't hide it well. I needed the extra time!

We finalized the guest list last night and that was my biggest point of frustration. I am a people pleaser and I hate the idea of people being offended or having hurt feelings if they can't come or aren't invited. I hope everyone would understand that it's simply a matter of space and that if I could I would want everyone there. The idea of hurting someone's feelings is just too hard for me to handle. Last night we figured out a list that we both felt good about and that I think will make the most people happy. Once that was settled it was like this HUGE weight was taken off my shoulders and the rest of the time I can just enjoy everything.
We were talking with Matt's parents last night about how the day is going to go and I just got so excited.
With the stress of the guest list behind us I just want to say how grateful I am to have so many people that want to share this day with us. We are so lucky to have so many people that love us. There are worse problems to have, that's for sure. I have been so touched at the things that people have said to me, whether it be in person, or text message or even Facebook message. People that I rarely talk to have told me how excited and happy they are for me. A number of people have told me that seeing this happen for me has given them hope. This experience has been so humbling and I feel so honored to be at the receiving end of so much love.
My cup runneth over with amazing people and now I'm adding a whole world of people into my life. I hardly feel worthy. Matt's friends and family have been so wonderful and I am so excited to have them as my own.
2 months from today I will be Matt's wife. I will be a daughter-in-law. I will be the sister-in-law to 16 people and a new aunt to 29 (and a half) people.
2 months from today. 61 days.

Friday, March 14, 2014

I suck at keeping secrets

So, not that it would surprise anyone. I decided that I was going to write a song for Matt to sing at our wedding luncheon. I wanted it to be a surprise.
I was nervous because I had never written a song without my friend Jaycie (aka co-member of Friends of Spencer [good times]). It was kind of a big deal to me and I didn't want it to sound all juvenile, but I'm in Arizona and she's in Utah so it wasn't the easiest thing to do together.
The week after we got engaged I sat down, I had an idea in mind for the theme of the song and I just started plucking at my guitar trying to figure out a melody.
I ended up getting the song written in about an hour. That's the thing I love about songwriting, when I have an idea in mind, it just flows.
I was so excited to have this surprise for him. I was doing a really good job of keeping it a secret, even though I do feel like most people, Matt included, would expect that from me.
The other night we were together and reading through my journal about our relationship, which was really cool, I'm so glad I wrote that stuff down. I got to his birthday and was reading about the things that I did for him. Then this came out of my mouth, "I also wrote him a so... DANG IT!" and man oh man did he ever laugh.
I was so mad/sad. He still hasn't heard the song, so at least that will be a surprise, but I'm so bummed that he knows about it, even though he told me he suspected that I'd write one.
So there you go, I suck at keeping secrets.

Thursday, March 6, 2014

A whole decade of possibilities.

For those people who follow me on Facebook, they know that I have been dreading turning 30.
I could not believe I my 20's were ending. I went to dinner with The Man and our friends Ben and Breann on Saturday and we were all being so childish. Shooting straw wrappers at each other, lauching gum wrappers in the air and what not, and Breann says, "Hard to believe we're all in our 20's" and I thought, that was only true for 4 more days!
All day on Tuesday I kept thinking, "I can't believe this is my last day in my twenties..."
Wednesday I wake up, all 30 and stuff. The day itself was no different than any other. I went to work and, outside of the Facebook notifications every 2-3 seconds and the random texts and calls, it was your pretty standard day. That night I met up with The Man he gave me a beautiful watch and we went to dinner, grabbed some To Go dessert from The OG and went back to his house and watched Lost. Honestly it was a great night, I loved the simplicity of it all.
While we were at dinner I had kind of an epiphone. I realized how excited I was to be 30. How excited I was that I was so so happy to just be with this wonderful man, who I love and who loves me so much, for my birthday. That is what made it a great night.
I told him how excited I was for this new decade. I feel like a chapter in my life has closed and a new one has begun. The last chapter was definitely enough to keep me interested in this book and to want to keep reading, but I know the next chapter is going to be so much more full. I feel like the best part of my life is starting.
I told Matt I have felt for a long time that for me my 20's was a time to figure things out, figure me out, and my 30's was going to be when everything started to come together. I had that thought initially when I was like 27 and I think I've been subconsciously looking forward to that ever since. Now that I'm here I can't even express how excited I am to be starting this next chapter.
This is the chapter that I become a wife and a mother. This is the chapter that all the rest of my life has trained me for.
I've had a number of friends turn 30 before me and a lot of them told me, "It feels no different than 29" but I can say with some confidence, 30 feels completely different than 29. My entire 20's was single life. Parties, vacations, living where I wanted, and moving from place to place. Right up until the last day. My 30's from day one will be family and settling down and learning how to be a good wife and mother.
Being at the end of one decade I can't help but see how it got to where I am today and be so grateful for the experiences I've had. Being at the beginning of a new decade I can't help but look to the future and all the amazing things this next 10 years have in store for me.
As much as I dreaded turning 30, I gotta say, I'm pretty dang happy now that I'm here.

Monday, March 3, 2014

One year down, the rest of my life to go...

One year ago today I left Utah for Arizona. I didn't know how long I'd be here. I didn't know why I was going. I didn't know what to expect.
I did know it would take a while for me to be happy. I did know, being the introvert I am, it would take a while for me to get to know people. I did know I would miss my family, friends and music buddies terribly.
I moved to Arizona because I had the strong feeling that Arizona was where I was supposed to be. I took the biggest leap of faith of my life and packed up nearly everything I owned, anything I could fit into my car and moved away from my life.
One year ago today I went to my nephew's baby blessing, and then said goodbye to everything I loved to step into an unknown future.
In the last year, I have been to California a few times, Las Vegas, Oklahoma, Lake Powell, Utah (several times) New Hampshire, Maine and Massachussetts. I have met hundreds of new people, I beat my PR at the Spudman Tri, my half marathon time. Although I haven't been able to sing nearly as much as I'd like I was still able to sing the national anthem for the Diamondbacks.
Best of all and I'm certain my purpose in moving here is, I met and got engaged to the most wonderful man.
All that being said, it has been an amazing year.
When I moved here I told everyone, including myself, that it was a temporary thing. "It'll probably be like a year, and then I'll be home" I think even then, I knew that wasn't true.
I always planned to end up in Utah. I was going to live by my family forever, I would stay in Utah forever. It's so strange to think that this year was the first year of the rest of my life.
I'm still transitioning in my head that Arizona will be "home" to me one day. Arizona will be the life my kids know. It's a strange feeling.
I can't help but think about where we will be in 5, 10... 20 years. I can't help but wonder what it will feel like to feel like Arizona is home. I can't help but think about the time when we have a community here that we can't imagine leaving. That's what I left in Utah and I know I'll have that again.
I'm so excited to have that with Matt. I'm so excited to think about where this adventure is going to take us. I'm so excited to start an entirely new life with him. I'm so excited to have him to share these new experiences with.
As heartbroken as I am to be away from the life I knew in Utah, I am just as excited, if not moreso, to start my new life with Matt. Makes waiting for our wedding that much more difficult.

A cake my co-worker made for me on my last day in the office.

Kelly and I moved the same weekend. This was at our combined farewell party.

The stairwell I got locked in, alone, the first time I decided to branch out, be brave and go to a social event.

Moore, Oklahoma. Memorial Weekend.

Getting ready to sing for the D-Backs.

Surfing in New Hampshire.

After the Spudman with the parentals.

After the Big Cottonwood Half Marathon.

After Jace's baptism.

Trapeze lessons.

My rowing crew "Strokes of Genius"

Me and the man, pumpkin carving date.

Color me Rad 5k with my friend Sayward.

Matt's graduation celebration in California.

My future.

Friday, February 21, 2014

What was I thinking?

*Disclaimer this post has nothing to do with my current life*

I remembered something yesterday that I haven't thought about in years and it made me think, "What was I thinking???"
When I was a little kid, my best friend lived about a mile away. I used to walk to her house all the time.
One winter day I was walking to her house. I was walking up the hill on Eastdell and I thought, "I wonder if anyone would stop if I just laid here on the ground." So I laid down. Guys, I'm like 8 years old, it's winter, middle of the day and I laid down on the sidewalk on a relatively busy street. If you were to see that what you would do? I, as an adult, would FREAK OUT!!! I just laid there... on the sidewalk, and after a couple of minutes, OF COURSE a car pulls over and a man opens his door. I got scared (duh) and popped right up and just kept walking up the hill as though nothing happened.
I didn't talk to the man, didn't even look at him, and from what I can remember he didn't say anything to me either.
I think about that now and I just laugh at how silly it is and what he must have been thinking.
So there you go, I am, and always have been, a weirdo.
(Side note, thank heaven nothing happened to me, in the world today the idea of an 8 year old little girl being alone is abhorrant.)