A vacation in pictures

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

dinner at carrabbas
gator on the golf course
the golf course
sunset on the beach
view from restaurant
birthday boy
jane whooping it up
pete and jane, celebrating 41 years
the birthday boy, happy 30th

The greatest game ever played...

Sunday, January 25, 2009

to us, well as I'm sure you have figured out already, that game is golf! Growing up, there was a golf club in my hand at an early age, we watched many a tournament on a nice Sunday afternoon, or Saturday for that matter, I knew the players names, I watched Tiger come on the scene, a favorite of my grandmother, who lived with my grandfather, months out of the year, on the golf course in Naples. One might say it's in our blood, but I would say we just like it. For me to have found a husband who enjoys the game as much as my father and brothers, seemed daunting, I didn't think it possible. But I found Alex, whom I tease for his mind boggling statistics of this player, on this day, years before he was born, who made this score, on this course. It's incredible folks, and yet I am sure that there are those who love the game even more. Alex and I, well we had our first date over a bucket of range balls in Edina. Nothing like golf to bring to people together. I am, what seems at first, a little cynical over golf. Most vacations revolve around which golf course he can play in his attempt to cross all 1oo off the list. Most weekend afternoons are spent with the announcers voice in the background. If I come across as a little cross, well don't listen. Because secretly, I love golf almost as much and makes me grin that he loves golf that much and that I can share this joy with him, walking along some of the most gorgeous landscapes, enjoying a round of 9 holes on a muni track, or cuddling up to him discussing the players on a Sunday afternoon. My friends, it's called bonding time at the Brogle household. Just yesterday, my loving husband, encouraged me to play along with him, despite the fact that I haven't picked up my clubs in over a year. We spent about what seemed like an hour at the driving range, trying to work out the kinks. Lo and behold, once my hands were screaming, from months of free time, we fixed my problem and I began to turn my hands over when I followed through. Who would have guessed that was the problem. I even went out and parred a few holes. By the end, I was so happy to have played, but I was dead tired and today when I woke up I realized one big detail.... I am a nine-holer from this day on...and that's that.

Confusion on the house!

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Sorry everyone for the confusion. So much excitement in the Brogle household. But we have signed the purchase agreement for our ST. LOUIS PARK HOUSE!! the bigger of the two, the one we'd love to unload. So items from the inspection are being negotiated, they are excited to move in, so hopefully in T-23 days we will be all the less stressed and back home to Prior Lake!

Happy Birthday to you!

Friday, January 23, 2009

Happy 30th Alex! The 20th was Alex's birthday along with his parents 41st Anniversary. We were down in Destin, FL visiting his parents on our, what seems, annual Florida trip! What a year to turn 30 and what a day to do it on. Alex has always shared inauguration day with the new president, but what a day this year. With the inauguration of Obama, we all from 11am on were glued to the television screen, listening closely, taking in history. After we were able to pull ourselves away we went out as a foursome to a great restaurant overlooking the ocean, Commander's Palace. It was a great place to eat, delicious food, great ambiance and a birthday hat to boot. Upon finishing dinner, we headed back to their condo where Alex and I proceeded to take a nap. Dinner and a movie followed and overall it was a great day. Some say turning 30 is a milestone for some, well based on my observations, I think because of the events in our lives this past year, turning 3o was not only a milestone, but left much to look forward too! We all love you!

Cleaning brings renewal, to heart and home...

Monday, January 19, 2009

I don't know about you, but I don't *love* cleaning. Before we got married, I was always known among friends and family as the one who was well, a little messy...clothes strewn all over the place, piles upon piles of papers, etc.

I remember when Alex and I were dating he often wondered if I really was a clean person. I would often tell him, "Honey I am clean, really I am, it's just that I have moved 8 times in the past 6 years, so I never put things away because I know I will be leaving again!"
This is the honest truth...once we were married and I knew we were staying put and that I could decorate, organize, etc. our house, well then I wasn't as messy anymore. I think having at least two roommates at every given time, really puts a hamper on how much you really can put your stamp on.
Ever since we have put our houses on the market, cleaning has become a number one priority in my life. I must say I am learning to love it. Why because the house looks so darn fantastic when I am finished...just like the feeling after a workout, eating a delicious meal, your heart after soul renewal. Everytime I finish, my heart is renewed because I cared for Alex and our home, and our house is clean. So I thought I would share a site I often visit of a woman who has this whole housekeeping/cleaning thing down pat...I mean, she makes me want to clean:) I'm talking about Katie over at Hyper Homemaker. She is truly amazing. Though I pale in comparison, I thought I would offer up a few of our favorites. I keep all of our cleaning supplies in a handy caddy so I can move everything from room to room.
My favorite cleaning products:
-Homemade vinegar and water mixture for wood floors
-Method Countertop spray for counters, stainless steel, just about everything
-Large floor mop with removable terry cloth cover from Menards (we have two covers, one for dry sweeping and one for mopping)
-and of course, Lysol wipes for all those groady germs:)

Praise God!

On Thursday night Alex and I received some fabulous news. There was an offer on our house in St. Louis Park. It was a little low mind you, so we calculated our bottom line and sent it back. Well after a little negotiation on Friday and a crazy, roller coaster of emotion, we had a buyer, a price was settled upon and on Saturday, while sitting in the Office Max in Destin, we signed the papers. We have a closing date of Feb. 16th, $10,0o0 in earnest money, and full faith that this will go through. Contingent upon inspection is the only caveat. This might be good or bad depending but considering the St. Louis Park inspectors just passed everything, we are not too worried. They happen to be some of the most detailed and difficult inspectors in the cities. Pray with us as we praise God for his abundant provision and that this all would go through smoothly.

Getting Ready for a trip...

Friday, January 9, 2009

I love packing, repacking, and then packing it all over again. I am known to have all of our clothes laid out the week before, lists made two weeks before, and the suitcase ready and waiting. You could say I get a little excited to go on vacation!
Next Saturday the 17th, Alex and I are heading to Florida. Every year we head there and it always seems to be our most budget friendly vacation (must be why we get so excited) We are heading first down to Destin to visit Alex's parents who are staying there for Jan. and Feb. This is their first time staying for an extended period, so we are very excited to see them! Then midway through the week we are shifting gears, renting a car, and heading to Tampa. My parents have a condo in Tarpon Springs right outside of Tampa, and this is our usual destination. With an average temp of 70 it beats 15 here in Minnesota. Give us some golf clubs, a couple books, a pool, and some pina coladas and we are set for a fabulous week!
So if you were wondering, yes the lists have been made, packing has started and we are ready for the flight!

And then there were four!

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Welcome Sylvia Joy Darling!
Yea for Aaron and Bethany and big sister Hazel. Sylvia Joy was born to one of our good friends this past Friday. What a sweet and adorable baby! We are so blessed to have Aaron and Bethany as friends and as so happy to see their family growing; healthy, strong, and so solid in the Lord. A big baby 9 lbs. 8 ozs. and adorable through and through! Proud of all of you and so happy to call you friends!

The Good Nearby

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

"I may not have all the money to give you, child, but know this: I love you more than anyone in the world, and I want you to know you're special. You're going to do something important someday. It may not change the entire world, but it'll change the world of the people around you. You'll be the good nearby....People don't realize good is closer than they think...the good nearby." (excerpt from The Good Nearby by Nancy Moser)
I just started this book the other night, and it's really good. But the one thing that caught my attention was the way the grandmother spoke to her granddaughter about being the good nearby. After Pastor John's last couple of sermons on scripture memorization and abiding with the Lord, I got to thinking that the two are linked.
When God abides in you, you are able to be the good nearby. These past eight months have been difficult for Alex and I, difficult for our marriage, for our walk with the Lord, for our friendships. And yet, I don't think either of us would change a thing. We've done without, learned to live on little, and depend on the Lord like never before. And through it all there have been plenty of people around us as our good nearbys. Thanks to everyone who was our good nearby!
We've been challenged to be the good nearby for our families and brothers and sisters in Christ even more. Praying this year you would join us in offering a willing heart to the Lord to be used by Him in ways outside yourself to help those in need and those who are in difficult circumstances.
"By this we know love, that he laid down his life for us, and we ought to lay down our lives for the brothers. But if anyone has the world's goods and sees his brother in need, yet closes his heart against him, how does God's love abide in him...if we love on another, God abides in us and his love is perfected in us." (1 John 3:16-17, 4:12)

A new day, a new jacket:)

During the football games on New Years Day, the girls were chatting away, and my friend Nichole mentioned that there were some great deals at the outlet mall in Albertville. Always one for a great deal, I grabbed my christmas money and decided to head there on Saturday while we were having a showing at our house. I love the outlet mall, or any outdoor mall for that matter. The day wasn't horribly bad weatherwise out there, so I enjoyed the walk to and from various stores. There were indeed some great deals.
I was able to pick up a dress shirt and sweater for Alex for the spring and get a new jacket for myself. I have always wanted a puffy jacket, but didn't want it to make me look like a snowman when I wore it. At the Gap Outlet they had fabulous deals on their jackets, so after a phone call to Alex for the color choice (white or brown), I found myself walking out of the store with a new coat! Yea for a good deal.
Here it is:

Reading update...

Monday, January 5, 2009

More great books. Lately I have been reading more and more. But with the new year here and resolutions abounding, I decided to make one of my own in terms of what I read. I happen to love fiction, so much that I don't often consider picking something else up other than a cookbook. So for my resolution...for every couple of fiction books I read, I would like to read a non-fiction book. We'll see how this goes, but I am hoping I can expand my reading preferences this year! Some great books I have just finished: Home Another Way by Christina Parrish The Sister Circle Series by Nancy Moser and Vonette Bright Multiple Blessings by Kate Gosselin Barefoot by Elin Hilderbrand On the nightstand: The Good Nearby by Nancy Moser The Namesake by Jhumpa Lapiri Lies Women Believe and the Truth that Sets them Free by Nancy Lee DeMoss

Happy Birthday Chris!

Sunday, January 4, 2009

(Jack, Luke, Chris, and Kate)
Today is my big brother's birthday! Happy birthday from the two of us, happy 39th! I am the youngest in the family and grew up looking up to my big brother and sister. Nearly 11 years older than me, it's been a neat experience to see our relationship grow as we got older. Not only is my big brother a great guy but he's an amazing dad to his three triplets! I just received this pic from my sister in law Jen, his wife, so I thought I would add it. Hope to see you soon!

As for the past week...

it's been a busy...but good busy. A little glimpse into the past week... New Year's Day- We had a bunch of friends over for a very casual and fun day of football watching, chatting, and enjoying the company of friends we haven't seen in awhile. That night, hungry as can be, Alex and I went in search of dinner, ending up at Davanni's. With pizza in hand we went home for a dlightful picnic on the floor. Friday- It was back to work for both of us, for me that meant playing monopoly with Riley and keeping the energy of three boys in check as cabin fever set in. Alex on the other hand was busy finishing up a basement remodel in Lakeville. That night we settled in for some comfort food and enjoyed the peace and quiet. Saturday- Another busy day. On New Year's Eve we had two showings of the St. Louis Park house. In turn, one couple was very interested and requested a second showing for Saturday. After a very relaxing morning, we got our act in gear, cleaned up the house, and headed out. Me to the Outlet mall in search of some great deals and Alex, to well, the backyard. He was set to head out in the work van but it wouldn't start. With me in Albertville, he was stuck to the van, so he holed up in there with blankets and work:) poor guy! That night we spent the night with Nate and Sarah from our small group...so much fun getting to know them better! Today- Church, brunch with my great friend Shari and her boyfriend Mike and an afternoon of quickly getting our seller's disclosure finished, wishing my brother happy birthday, and relaxing. Alex just headed out to watch the game with friends so I am settling in with a new book! We're ready for the week ahead, please pray with us for God's guidance and hand in next days over the house in St. Louis Park. Oh that His will would be for it to sell!

2009! Happy New Year!

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Last night after we finished up working and quickly getting the house ready for two separate showings, Alex and I snuck away to Caribou for a large coffee for two. It's these little moments that seem to make the world of difference in our busy days and weeks. Afterward we were free to hustle and bustle and get things ready for our small group New Year's Party. Thanks to the Goodall's for hosting and for a fabulous night to ring in the new year! We are so thankful for the friends we have made through our small group...definitely a blessing:) So last night we got into listing things we were thankful for so I thought I might be able to recap what we are thankful for, each on our own. Here goes: Andrea: -God's continual provision and guiding through the past year...I never would have thought back last January that here we would be in 2009 having completed a house flip, carrying two mortgages, Alex trading in remodeling for freelance work, etc. In October we budgeted and had money to carry both mortgages through Jan., then in December through God's provision until March and now until May. GOD IS AN AMAZING PROVIDER...in ways we would have never fathomed. -For Alex, his love, grace and sense of humor, work ethic, drive, and faith in Christ. With him I am complete, a better person and more loving wife. -For my job and that family...their kindness surpasses and the humor of children keeps me sane -family, friends and BBC, for support, love, and prayer Alex: -for my wife, her trust in me to go out on a limb and try something new, support even when all plans have been changed, altered, and have not come out as planned, sense of humor to keep me laughing even when I am extremely stressed -God's provision and ultimate plan...like Andrea said, God has provided in stolen tools, broken cars, through family and friends, in ways we couldn't ask or imagine. To be brought to this place of seeing provision with new eyes is the perfect place to be -The lessons we've learned through the past year, ways we've been taught to love more, discern, and trust were huge

{Praying for 2009 to be even more than we could ask or imagine...for us, you and yours}

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