MAKING CHRISTMAS TRADITIONS

Processed with VSCOcam with f2 presetMaking Christmas Traditions is always exciting! This year, Xavier and I were even more excited… This is our first Christmas  together in our own place. That means, ‘our’ own tree, ‘our’ own decorations, ‘our’ own lights.. and most importantly.. OUR own Christmas Traditions. We had decided (well, I kinda decided, lol) that we would go with a REAL Christmas tree and no tree made from plastic. No offense if that’s what your traditions consist of, lol. But there is something about a real christmas tree that makes the season even more jolly ! Not mention the smell of a real tree is one of a kind and a smell I could probably have in my house all year around if I could. I also told Xavier and our whole entire family that when the time comes for us to have children, they would not know of plastic Christmas trees!lol! Do you see my obsession now?

Any who, 2 nights ago, the fall decorations came down to make room for the next! Xavier and I’s schedule this month have been so off that it was hard finding the right day or night to make time to get a tree. But like anything else, we found a way! One night after Xavier came home, we rushed to our local Christmas Tree Tent and picked up our tree! It was love at first sight! The tent was closing in ten minutes, but as soon as Xavier saw the tree he knew it was the one! It was perfectly shaped and perfectly filled. Even though I thought we were going for a smaller tree, Xavier couldn’t part ways and so the 7 footer is now standing tall in our home! And, I love it!

The excitement was real guys! Our First tree in our home! So we got the lights out and the ornaments that my mom so graciously donated to us and began our wonderful night! We turned up the Christmas music and baked chocolate chip cookies for our night! Those two things will definitely be included in our Christmas traditions each year! Cant pass up on those two! Well along with the decor my mom so graciously donated I got around to some wonderful DIY! I made some burlap bows and my favorite, my diy burlap “Merry Christmas” banner to top it off.

We love our Tree! It’s so cozy and beautiful! We can’t help but turn on the lights even in the daytime. But what we most love is that we get to do our Christmas and our own Christmas traditions from now on. I feel so incredibly blessed to have not only the love of my life to share a Christmas with but a loving family as well! This season is a reminder of the endless blessings that pour over us each and every year and the real reason for the season.. Jesus!

Happy December 1st.. 25 days to go!

Here’s how we started it off

-Jen<3

Processed with VSCOcam with lv03 preset

Processed with VSCOcam with lv03 presetvscocam-photo-4

Processed with VSCOcam with lv03 preset

What are some of your Christmas Traditions?

THE PROPOSAL!

IMG_7883The proposal! Yes, our proposal! It was simply perfect. Xavier and I are officially engaged and we could not be more excited! Not only are we excited but we are so remarkably blessed! Our relationship has been a blessing in disguise from the very beginning. Xavier and I met in Nursing school and to many’s surprise, he and I were not even friends in the beginning. I was a little apprehensive to start a friendship with Xavier, mostly because of his “I’m a stud and I know it” kinda walk he had, lol. According to him, he always just “wanted my attention.” I didn’t give him my attention until some semesters after in school where we actually had to be in clinical’s together. We got to know each other some more and we actually became great friends. Towards the end of nursing school our good friend Anita, aka cupid, started stirring things up for us and long behold the truth came out! We actually liked each other and we both were okay with it. Our last semester in nursing school, Xavier and I were pretty much inseparable and he asked me to be his girlfriend! That moment alone was unforgettable… picnic by the bay, asking me to be his girlfriend and dolphins swimming right by the water. No seriously, that’s exactly how it went! Just lovely. We also have been so blessed to share graduation together, passing our boards together and being hired as Nurses weeks apart!  Some months into working we even got our own place! So many memories.. and to think that we have so many more in our future together fills my heart with so much love. God has truly been watching over us and for that we are grateful.

For those of you that have followed my blog, you’ll know that Xavier and I had a trip planned to NYC this past week. That trip was ‘supposedly’ meant to be a mini-vacation to NYC and to attend an event in Madison square garden.  Little did I know, one of the most important questions in my life would be asked. On that day, Xavier and I woke up to the usual New York city noise and the hustle of the crowd. Little did I know Xavier had been planning this day for some months. Our day started by getting some very delicious breakfast and a walk in the park. After our bellies were full we headed to the world trade center memorial. From there we had plans to meet up with Xavier’s friend and his girlfriend to head to Brooklyn. After some debating on where we were really going to meet them and lots of painful walking, Xavier told me that we would meet them at the Brooklyn bridge, so we could walk across it. Lets jut say I was not a happy camper and my feet were in so much pain that I quickly told him, “I am not walking the bridge!” Well to my surprise, Xavier turned around and gave me a very sturdy and loud “WE ARE WALKING THE BRIDGE!” I was so stunned that I just stayed quiet and agreed,lol. I gave in, sucked up the pain and headed to the bridge in pain but excited to see the great Brooklyn bridge! Little did I know, this was all planned.

THE PROPOSAL: We got to the start of the bridge, Xavier stopped to put his jacket on and get his camera ready so we could take some awesome shots! I quickly followed his steps so that we wouldn’t have to stop in the middle of the bridge and hold up people who were doing the same. ( This was the moment that he very sneakily put the ring in his pocket that he had been carrying in his camera bag!) I was so blinded by the view that I didn’t even notice this! lol. Well, we walked close to the middle of the bridge were we met up with his friend and his girlfriend and we all kept walking together. To my surprise as well, they were in on the plan! Just about midway on the bridge we all stopped to take some shots. Xavier asked to use my camera so he could take a panorama shot while I took a picture of his friend and his girlfriend. ( This was the moment he took a picture of a small piece of paper with some very important words) Once again, I of course did not even notice, lol. Well right after, Xavier asked me to give his camera to his friend so he could take a picture of us on the bridge. The next part, is the best part of this story!!

On October 17, at 3:20 in the afternoon, Xavier and I made one of the best memories in our lives thus far. He asked me to grab my camera and look at the cool shot he had taken with my camera. To my surprise, and it was a very unexpected surprise! It was the most beautiful picture i had ever seen! It was him holding a little piece of paper with the best words on it… “WILL YOU MARRY ME?”  The moment was perfect, the timing was perfect and the setting was breathtaking! A this moment all I could do was cry. I literally threw myself on him while he was on one knee and ended up on my knees too! lol.  I cried out of excitement and the feeling of love that was rushing through me. It was a feeling like no other and a feeling that I cannot even describe with words.  Knowing that you will spend the rest of your life along with the love of your life, your soul mate and your lover is the best feeling ever.

It was a moment that I will cherish for the rest of my life and that when thinking back on it, will always bring a smile to my face. It will be a memory that will be in our hearts forever and a moment that will remind us of our love. Our proposal was perfect for us in every way possible. We were experiencing a new place together, doing something that we enjoy doing as a couple (taking pictures.)Our story thus far has always had ‘unexpected moments’ and this is another that will be added to our list. These ‘unexpected’ moments for Xavier and I have been the best moments and moments that show us our endless blessings.

We are so thrilled for our future ahead. I know that I cannot imagine spending a future without him. He makes me better, he supports me, takes care of me, loves me unconditionally and makes me complete. I know that we will always be there for each other through the good times and the bad. I can only pray that God continues to bless us in our future ahead. We are very excited to share this moment with all our loved ones and with you all. So here are our perfect pictures captured by Mike, Xavier’s friend. THE PROPOSAL.

ps. It was a little windy that day.. lol

love,

Jen and Xavier.

IMG_7884

IMG_7887

IMG_7891IMG_7890IMG_7892

IMG_7895

IMG_7898IMG_7900IMG_7899

Thanks to everyone who has already congratulated us and to our families for giving us your blessing. It means the world to us and we love you all.

A special thanks to Mike and Jisbely for helping Xavier capture this special moment in our lives.

Jen & X.

*all images are property of La Vida, life as it comes 

WILL YOU BE MY BRIDESMAID??

Will you be my Bridesmaid!?? That was one of my favorite questions i got asked today. Besides “are you hungry?” lol! In all seriousness, a question like that can make anyone’s day! Especially if its being asked by a special friend that’s so dear to your heart. If you have been reading my blog from the beginning, which i doubt since i think only 10 people did and most were probably my family lol.. Well if you did, you would know that Xavier and I have a mutual friend that means quite a lot to us. Her name is Anita. When i first started blogging, she was one of my very first post, here. In that post i made sure to mention that Anita, Xavier and I all met in nursing school and she soon became Xavier and I’s cupid. Well besides using her beautiful engagement celebration on my blog, it was also a chance to express how dear she is to my heart and how blessed i am to call her my friend.

Today i write about Anita once again, and i couldn’t be more happy to do so. Anita is a person whom i cherish not only as person but as a friend. Even though we don’t see each other daily nor on a weekly basis, she’s a friend that i know will always be there for me. I know this because she always has in the past. As friends that met in nursing school, her and i got to share a huge milestone in our lives together, becoming nurses. There were always challenges.. not only in nursing school but in our daily lives. She was definitely ‘my person’ during those times and i couldn’t have been more grateful for that. We were each other’s cheerleaders when sleep became too little, night’s became too long and when we rocked out exams in nursing school! I will always cherish those memories with her! Did i mention that i met her in orientation while she almost spilled orange juice on me?? lol Well thanks to that orange juice we were inseparable! We pushed each other, we helped each other, we stood up for each other and we made each other laugh when we needed a boost!! And man did we laugh! Till this day, even when we just get to see each other once a month, since sometimes life happens, there is never a dull moment! We can laugh till we wheeze!

So today I said, “I do!!” I said YES to being my beautiful friends bridesmaid! Because I wouldn’t have any other answer but that one. We now share our stories as working nurses, as future wives, and of course of our future as friends! This is yet another moment that we will cherish together and keep in our memories. I couldn’t be more happy for her and her future hubby! I know their future will be full of endless blessings and love! I can’t wait to see her walk next to her hubby as future MR and MRS and i can’t wait to be a part of it! It’s an honor.

So to my dear friend, Thank you! Lets keep on making more memories and laughing till we wheeze! Love you!

-Jen ❤

Heres how she asked! How cute are they!?

IMG_3724-1_FotorIMG_3725-1_Fotoranita&I

HELLO 25.. HELLO ST.AUGUSTINE!

hello25I think Birthday’s are just another day to be thankful and to realize how much we are blessed. Usually my birthday’s consist of a nice family dinner and day out! Well this year, for the big 25 it was more than just a dinner and day out. Thanks to my lovely boyfriend and family, it was a Birthday weekend getaway! It was so great and special of him. Since Xavier and I started dating, I have always made comments on how lovely it would be to just take a drive up to St. Augustine, FL. Well about a month before my big 25, I made it known that for this birthday I really wanted to go somewhere that I had never been to before and to be able to share it with his and my family. I think he got the point because one, he told me to stop worrying about it and two, he secretly planned the whole thing. He got my parents and his family all on the same page and they agreed to make the drive up for my birthday for the weekend.

I think one thing we did learn throughout his planning is how hard it is for both of our families to keep secrets,haha. We had a couple of people slip throughout the process. My mom during the week, slipped and asked me how the weather was in St. Augustine. His Aunt mentioned St.Augustine in a conversation about hotel rooms. And our friend Anita during lunch made it known that we weren’t going to be here for the weekend. Needless to say, I kind of had an idea a day or two before the actual trip. haha, my babe at least tried. Don’t get me wrong, I was still pretty surprised. Surprised because even though I kind of knew, I was surprised that not only did my parents go but also his parents and his aunt and uncle and their daughters. It was definitely shocking that he was able to get both of our families together, since we’ve failed several times at doing so. With the exception of some other individuals that I wish could have made it. It was still so special to have the ones that were able to make it, get away with me and leave their busy schedules behind.

The night before the trip, midnight to be exact, I got my Happy Birthday wishes and a beautiful watch and a card stating that we were leaving for the weekend! He can be so sweet. So the day of my birthday we got our bags and headed to my parents house. Turned out we were driving up with them, so off we were! Xavier than let me know that his parents would be driving up the next day since they had to work. Long behold, after a 4 1/2 hour drive we were there! Xavier’s parents and aunt and uncle would meet us there the next day.

All in all y’all, it was such a great birthday weekend! It meant the world to me that my family was able to be a part of yet another birthday. Turning a quarter of a century old is a big deal after all!  I truly feel beyond blessed to have such a caring family, not just MY OWN but also Xavier’s. My family and his, are all so supportive of our relationship and have such loving hearts for both of us. I really feel thankful of everyone who put their time and effort on making this birthday special for me, especially Xavier for making the plans. Life can be overwhelming at times, but life can also be wonderful if we choose to make it that way. Life is also about all the little moments we get to experience and who we get to experience them with. This past weekend the moments were memories I will cherish for a life time. THANK YOU EVERYONE!!! You all made me a very happy birthday girl.

And just so you all know, St. Augustine, FL is a beautiful little city! It is full of history, scenery, relaxation and so much more! Being known to be the oldest city, it is so incredibly cute and charming. There was so much to see and experience all in this little place. The views and the stories behind every thing you saw were remarkable. I highly recommend a trip to this charming little city! You truly will be taken back by all it has to offer. It is romantic, relaxing, exciting, and full of charm all at the same time. It was definitely a hot hot summer weekend, with much walking, but it was so worth it! We all fought through the heat and soaked up all that we had to see and learn there. I won’t tell you too much so you all experience it yourselves one day but here are some shots we took while there. Some of our stops throughout the city included: The Fountain of Youth, Castillo de San Marcos, Flagler College, St. Augustine Lighthouse and museum, and a couple of the oldest churches in the city. Those were a few of our city stops to just name a few! Lets just say my camera was very happy there!! And so were we!! (unfortunately I don’t have too many pictures of Xavier’s family since we split up for some of the day they were there for different activities, but they very much were a huge part of my celebration!)

Again, a big THANK YOU to all my loved ones for making memories with me. Love you all. ❤

And to the Love of my Life… thank you for all your efforts in making this birthday extra special for me. Love you to the moon and back times infinity! ❤

-Jen<3

PS. I had an obsession with the beautiful doors

St.A58

St_A21

St.A42

St_A25St.A48

St.A75

St.A17St.A21

St.A61

St.A24

St.A74St_A16St_A15

St.A30St.A33

St.A13St.A78

St_A26

St_A17

St_A24St_A11St_A12St_A5

St.ASt_A1

St.A1

Thank You for the wonderful memories St. Augustine, see you soon!  Thank you to my family and most importantly.. Thank you God for giving me yet another day & another year, to share with my loved ones and to enjoy this life you have given us!  I am so grateful.

So what places have you all visited recently? =)
*all images are property of La Vida, life as it comes 

10 DAY COUNTDOWN AND SOME WISHES

25As of today, the 10 day countdown begins till my 25th Birthday! August 29 to be exact. I am quite excited for this day! While I do realize that I am getting older and turning a quarter of a century old.. I still find it exciting and feel amazingly blessed! Blessed to make it to 25; alive, healthy, happy, with a job, with a place to call home, in love with a man beyond my dreams, and a family that loves me unconditionally.

A couple of months ago I shared my feelings with you all when I realized that my birthday was coming up in my post half way to 50. In that post, I remember telling you all how in shock I was when I realized I would soon be half way to fifty. I also stated that I would try to enjoy my last couple months at 24, and in deed I have tried. Like I mentioned before, there are always going to be ups and downs. In these past couple months I definitely have to say that there were a lot more ups than downs, and for that I am grateful. Within these past two months I have tried to adventure out and do things with my parents, like kayaking which I also shared with you all in a post. I have made new goals, like our healthy/fit challenge, purchased my first new car and much more. While at times I complain how tired I am after a long day of work, I am also grateful that at 24 going on to 25 I have a career and a job. I believe that 24 was a good year for me and one that I am truly proud of and will always remember. Twenty-four was very memorable for me and one that I will always cherish. I personally feel like I accomplished a lot and I didn’t realize it until I sat down to share these feelings with you all. At 24 I graduated with my Bachelors in Nursing, entered the field of nursing with a new job, moved out and in with the love of my life who I met in nursing school (killed two birds with one stone ;P) and purchased my first new car! Not too shabby huh?  It wasn’t easy, but it was all worth it.

So on these last 10 days until that BIG 25, I will wait patiently and keep enjoying these last few days as 24 years young! And before I blow out my candles on that day and make some wishes.. I have some wishes before the day comes.

On that day I wish..

to be with my family and xavier’s…

to be with my honey xavier..

to be surrounded with peace..

to be somewhere I haven’t been to before..

to laugh as much as my belly allows..

to enjoy my day no matter what may happen..

and to eat some yummy cupcakes! why not right??

But most importantly, to keep in mind not just on that day.. but everyday, how truly blessed I am. To keep humble and do everything wholehearted. To always remember that God is good and to keep praying for his guidance, no matter what comes my way! I wish that this year more things get accomplished and that I stay true to who I am and who I hope to be. To be a better person. To stay committed to whatever goals I put out for myself. To spend more time with my family. To be a better me for Xavier, my family and myself. I wish for better and greater things for Xavier and I’s relationship. And lastly, I wish that if I fail in any, I learn from them and keep humble at heart. Because who I am and what I have are all by his grace and love. I welcome you with open arms and an open heart 25!! T-minus 10 days! See you soon 25!

Love,

Jen ❤

 

 

TO OUR MOM: HAPPY BIRTHDAY!

mom10This week we celebrated  our moms birthday. Let me just tell you all before I go into details, that I haven’t seen that smile on her face in a long time. It was great to see her so happy. To start off, this year my dad had a great idea to surprise her. And boy was she surprised! The plan was to take her out to dinner to a place that she had never been to, but by the beach. Well, the question was, what restaurant?? There are so many down here in South Florida. We wanted to take her to one where we knew she would enjoy the food! ( she’s a picky eater, haha) The second part of the plan was that she would be under the impression that it was only going to be her and my dad. So the search for a restaurant and to make it seem they were going out to a birthday dinner date began. Part of the plan was for my boyfriend and I to pick up my little sister an hour or two before they left for their date. The next part of the plan was to get all my brothers and us of course, together that day to surprise her.

Well on a more personal level, no family is perfect… mine including. So to make a long story short, getting all of us siblings together with my parents was a big step. But by grace and with forgiving hearts, the arrangements were made and we were all on the same page and ready to surprise our mom!

So this past Wednesday,  a couple of days before her actual birthday (we have a wedding to attend on her birthday) we all had the night off from our busy everyday duties..so we used that opportunity to surprise her! I got up that day and picked up some delicious Misha’s cupcakes instead of a traditional birthday cake. ( I highly recommend to try these cupcakes, they are soo yummy!) After that, my boyfriend and I headed over to my parents and picked up Sofia two hours before dinner. We tricked her into thinking Sofia was going to join us for dinner with x and I and his parents, and she fell for it! Shortly after, we got ourselves dolled up and we were of to a restaurant by the beach here in Ft. Lauderdale, FL, Sea Watch on the Ocean. All us siblings headed to the restaurant first, to wait for her big arrival! We held up our menus so that she wouldn’t see us as she walked in. But when she walked in, she followed my dads instructions to close her eyes.. and long behold, a big “SURPRISE” was definitely heard in the restaurant!

Her excitement and reaction was beautiful and heart warming.  I think deep down we all secretly shed a tear or two with her. She was so overwhelmed with appreciation that we were all there and TOGETHER. Something that had not happened in a long time. I still remember seeing her face and how happy and moved she was. I think as we get older, we seem to appreciate our parents happiness a lot more.. and becomes something you only wish you can fill their hearts with. I think we all did just that this night. And the best part of it was that we all came together for HER and did that and brought her happiness.

After our delicious meals, we headed over to the beach. It was literally right behind the restaurant so we continued the celebration! She blew out the candles on her cupcakes and made a wish that I bet was already complete! Cheers to our mom, friend, and the reason for many of our cries, laughter and love! We wish you so many more by our side!

So dear, Mami..

Happy Birthday from all of us.

We love you oh so much and enjoy seeing you happy!

mom12mom8

Isn't she beautiful?
Isn’t she beautiful?

mom26

Happy Birthday Mami
Happy Birthday Mami

Happy Day my beautiful mother.. You are loved so dearly. May God Bless with you many more.. May he fill your heart with more love, more forgiveness, more happiness and more dreams in your heart.

Love, Jen and the family.