A few months ago, I was thinking of how fun it might be to have our "family" photos taken every year. And just always plan on getting some photos taken so that we make it a priority. But then I felt kind of silly about that because it's just Greg and I, so if we took photos together, it would pretty much just be another engagement shoot. Conveniently, my childhood friend, Alise, needed some web work done and we decided to do a trade for a photo shoot.
I decided it would be fun to have our picture taken in the Avenues. I had debated having our engagement photos there because we spent SO much time walking the streets of the Avenues while we were dating. I lived really close to my ward's chapel, which is adorable and historic. After Greg and I got engaged, he transferred to my ward where we took a fabulous marriage preparation course together. We had such fond memories of the area and the church, it was a perfect spot to take some pictures and remember that important time in our life together.
We also went up to Lindsey Gardens, which is at the tippy top of the Avenues next to the cemetery. Greg took me there after our 3rd date so we could sip some delicious Hatch hot chocolate. We went back there on our 3 month anniversary where we said "I love you" for the first time. We went back on a few Sunday afternoons to read and people watch. And we stopped here on our route the evening he proposed.
Looking at these new pictures got me a bit emotional. We're a bit more comfortable with each other this year. We are pleased as punch to have a year behind us! I had heard that the first year of marriage can be difficult, but I assumed it wouldn't apply to us. But in all honesty it was hard, harder than we expected. It's serious business to bring 2 adult lives together! The first month was probably the most difficult, especially because it was the holiday season immediately and then the dark months of winter. We envisioned having a simple, cozy winter. And it was for the most part, but I convinced myself that I was a bad wife unless I had a nice homemade dinner on the table each night, and Greg felt like it would hurt my feelings if he did something alone or with his friends. We both worried about spending any money since we now had joint accounts. I felt guilty every time Greg did the dishes and I wasn't helping. And then of course trying to balance time with both families while still making everyone a priority.
We also had a lot of learning to do about each other. Greg re-learned that I LOVE having a plan ahead of time. I learned that Greg loves to be very prepared for any sort of travel: plane, road trip, train, rental car. Greg learned that my schedule revolves around my stomach and eating plans. I learned that Greg could be happy tinkering in the garage all day everyday. Greg learned how much fabric costs, I learned how much go karting costs. Greg learned that I am no longer myself after 10 pm and I will collapse into sleep. I learned that Greg will wake up early to hang out with me, but he'd prefer to sleep in.
Of course I could go on and on. Lots of things were learned this year. We've had to make a lot of compromises and learn the best ways to communicate with each other (something I'm sure we'll be mastering the rest of our lives). But all in all, I never knew that one person could make me so incandescently happy. He's my greatest advisor, my favorite friend, and he's made my life light and bright. He continues to support me and encourage me everyday, and I hope I'm doing the same for him. It's so nice to share so much time with him and know how invested he is in our family and our future together.
Last night I was talking with my mom on the phone. I mentioned that Greg was over at his grandpa's house trying to fix his snow blower and then he was going to stop at his parent's house to fix theirs as well. Then she told me that he had reviewed my little sister's math assignment that day and emailed her a bunch of feedback. And then I told her about how he paused our Star Wars marathon to go and take me to see the lights at Temple Square because he knew I had a hard day at work. I started crying as I told her, "I just seriously think he is the gift that keeps on giving. He continually goes above and beyond my wildest dreams."
He's my other half, and I know it's only been a year, but I couldn't imagine my life without him.