Thursday, August 21, 2014

15 Year Wedding Anniversary at the St. Francis Inn

The St. Francis Inn in St. Augustine, Florida graciously offered to host me and my husband for one night to celebrate our 15 year wedding anniversary in the Elisabeth Suite. Kelly, one of the Innkeepers was so welcoming and was always available to answer all of our questions about the area.

The Inn Kitty "Zeke" was the first thing we saw upon our arrival- I instantly knew that this was going to be a wonderful place to stay!

They also offer free guest parking, which believe it or not, is extremely rare in St. Augustine- almost every place that you visit, you either pay a parking meter or a daily fee to park your vehicle in a lot.

At every point in the day, there was always iced water, sweet tea, hot teas and coffee available. 

The husband and I enjoyed having our coffee/tea on this beautiful porch right outside our suite.

Sherry was available in our room upon arrival

Bicycles are available for complimentary use to ride around the  historic downtown area.

I loved having s'mores by the fire - so much fun!

St. Francis Inn even remembered our Wedding Anniversary-such a nice surprise!

We checked into the St. Francis Inn early Wednesday afternoon and they were so gracious that they allowed us to check in 1.5 hours early. I overheard another couple being checked in early as well- most places make you wait so that was a nice little treat! Upon check-in, the innkeeper gave us free admission tickets to visit the St. Augustine Lighthouse and Museum (you will see later in the next post how much fun that we had there!). She also showed us some fun places to visit on the map and gave us the access code to use their beach cottage that provides beach towels, beach chairs, refreshments and free parking for a day at the beach. This was my first time ever hearing of any accommodations that provide this type of service-I was blown away by how much they had to offer.

Some other amenities that the Inn offered was a buffet breakfast (the quiche was so delicious!), social hour with wine and light bites, specialty made coffees, then later in the evening, they also offered a dessert hour with hot teas, coffee, hot cocoa and their in-house home made cakes and desserts. We only stayed one night, so we didn't have enough time to enjoy their heated pool, in-room Jacuzzi, board games, book reading collection, etc.

After staying at the St. Francis Inn, we definitely plan on visiting again but next time, we are planning a longer stay so we can enjoy more of our time there. We thoroughly enjoyed the romantic ambiance of the Inn- especially with the champagne by the fireplace and the complimentary robes. It was the perfect place to celebrate our 15 Year Wedding Anniversary. If you plan on visiting St. Augustine in the near future, you should definitely check out the St. Francis Inn.  Thank you to St. Francis Inn for their hospitality and for making our wedding anniversary so amazing.

Have you ever visited St. Augustine?

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Power in Prayer!!

Honestly, I actually wrote an entire post yesterday with no intentions of ever posting it- I have been stressed so much lately and it's always so freeing to just write and get everything out. That way I don't have to worry with unnecessarily burdening others, not to mention, I just would rather just keep things to myself & give it all over to God. So today is a happy post- lucky you! :-)

Things have been stressful, but this morning I was praying and just experienced a feeling of God's presence all around me and I instantly knew all of a sudden, that things were about to start looking up for me and the husband. One day, I will tell you the story of the past 3 1/2 years- things have been extremely difficult on us and we have had to fight, pray and work our way to get back on track.  If I have one piece of advice in life- it would be to pray every day, pray for freedom from bondages, lack of finances, hurts- God is the healer of all broken things, He is the Restorer!

Lately, every day I have been walking up and down our wooded drive, just praying for our future- school, career, finances, life. I have been doing this for a long time- when we lived in Albany- at my Government job, I would take my breaks with my Bible and just read and pray for our future and those same prayers were answered 5 years later!

Here are some of the prayers that I prayed & fasted over & God answered:

//I prayed for a Organic Food store like Trader Joe's & Whole Foods to come to Tallahassee

//I prayed for a strong, unbreakable marriage with my husband

//I prayed for a strong & intimate relationship with God

//I prayed to get out of Albany and move back to my hometown, Thomasville

//I prayed for freedom from controlling people who had too much control over our lives

//I prayed for my husband to be a strong head of the household and to be his own man & not under anyone else's shadow

//I prayed that if Roscoe ever passed that it would be in a peaceful way that we could live with & that a bad memory wouldn't torment me.

These are just a few of the things that I prayed & fasted over that God answered! Today, I am just so grateful for everything that God has done for us and how he has always been there every time I have needed him the most.  I love him more than anything in this world and without him I couldn't and wouldn't want to exist. Everything in life is not perfect, but there is always good to thank God for!

I hope that you are all having a great week!!

What are some prayers that God has answered for you?

Friday, August 8, 2014

St. Francis Inn, St. Augustine, Florida

Remember yesterday when I mentioned visiting St. Augustine, Florida for our 15 year Wedding Anniversary? Great news- we will be leaving next Wednesday! Kelly, the lovely innkeeper at St. Francis Inn, graciously offered to host us for a night for my blog. I wanted to show you some photos and tell you a little more about the St. Francis Inn- the place that we will be staying at while in St. Augustine.

They even have a beach cottage for guest use while visiting the beach- with showers, towels, chairs, snacks and drinks. We haven't been to the beach all year so it will be a nice treat!

Honestly, I am also really excited for the amenities that the Inn offers- complimentary bicycles, gourmet breakfast, specialty coffee drinks, evening dessert, s'mores, social hour with wines & antipasto are among some of the amenities that are available. They also offer free admission to the St. Augustine Lighthouse- so that is definitely on my list for the first day in St. Augustine.

I will be doing a review of the Inn with more photos and details once I visit- I hope that you enjoyed the little preview!

Hope that you all have a great weekend planned!!

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Catching Up!!

Today, I am blogging from my Office on my lunch break just because I always have so much to do once I get off of work.

It's been quite a while since my last confession, I mean blog post, and so much (both good & bad) has happened since then! Most of everything is finished on the house, with a few exceptions which I am hoping will be finished in the next week or so.

Main things to finish on House (before we can buy furniture + decorate):

//Tile for Bath & Laundry
//Wood Floors for remaining house
// Deck- last few stairs & railing

Bad things that have happened but (most) turned around for the good:

// Kitchen Contractor yelled at me and made me cry (he did finally finish the job though and the cabinets do look pretty amazing) and it was all over the infamous "spice cabinet" which in the long run, may have been worth being yelled at...I will let you know when I officially start cooking in our new kitchen.

// During our 3 days of moving, our Suburban broke down and we had to have it towed. We prayed that there was nothing wrong with it (i.e. extra expenses) and we found out that everything was okay + we weren't charged- winning!

// Immediately after our Suburban broke down, the air on our work truck went out (by that I mean, we turned it on and it literally started smoking inside of the truck & I was yelling at my husband to turn it off!)

// I dropped my iPhone 5 in the toilet (it's not what you think..) my husband and I were talking in the bathroom about the tile floors &  I had my phone on top of my journal (while standing by the toilet) and it slid off right into the toilet bowl! I grabbed it out, dried it off, blow-dried it with cool air, shut it down overnight & put it in a bag of rice (and by rice, I really mean organic wheat barley- it's the only thing that I could find!!) and prayed over it and the next morning it was working fine!!

// The deck stairs will be finished this weekend then we will start on the tile and wood floors next.

// We finished moving everything out of our apartment and my Mom even helped me clean the apartment- I was so glad because cleaning is SO much more fun when you have someone to help you:)

// My husband and I had a 15 year wedding Anniversary this past Tuesday but we weren't able to celebrate it because we were too busy trying to get the house finished + we only had our work truck which had no working a/c.

In other news, I also became a Certified Notary and a Member of the American Notaries Association. I don't feel like a grown-up most days, but just writing that, that seems like a pretty legit grown-up thing to do.

I also recently started back running and doing some light weights everyday. Mostly, due to the fact that I will be headed to the beach soon and I just ordered a swimsuit- so yeah, there's that..

We are planning to go to St. Augustine soon to celebrate our belated 15 year Anniversary- I'm excited to take a break from working! I will also be reviewing a gorgeous Bed & Breakfast for the Blog while I am there- so keep a look out for the preview post in the next few days!

I think that is everything that has happened in the past few weeks in one blog post. Hope that you are all having a great week so far- tomorrow is Friday!!

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Having Faith..

I don't think I have ever been so busy and stressed in my life- I can't wait until everything is finished and we can move into our new home! I honestly I just don't have time in my life right now for anything- I barely have time for myself or my husband- I feel like I am stretched so thin and on the edge of losing it lately, which is a feeling that I really don't like. So now I know what being your own contractor feels like.

The next few weeks are going to be ridiculously overwhelming with trying to get everything moved, get the CO approval and finish up things even after we get moved in. I wish we had time to go & buy furniture for the house before we move in- but it will be pretty empty until we go shopping.

Here is what is going on with the house now:

//Attic insulation installed
//Meter-box installed (by husband)
//House Insurance bonded/Renter's Insurance canceled for move out date
//Received our new hard-wood floors

//Garage Doors being installed
//Lowe's- choose & purchase tile, buy exterior lights
//Move 1 load of things.

This weekend:
//Install Tile
//Work on deck
//Install all interior doors
//Install attic ladder
//Move some things into garage
//Pack some more things

Next week:
//Move more things
//Lights being turned on (hopefully)
//Cabinets being completed
//Purchase plumbing supplies- toilet, faucets, shower hardware

Week of July 21st:
//Granite being installed Monday
//Plumbing being finished Tuesday
//Appliances being delivered Thursday

It is going to be a miracle to get moved in + lots of prayers! But once we get approved to move in, we still have to put the wood floors down and install shelving in the walk in closet and pantry- those are things that need to be done as soon as possible! I'm excited to get to that part of actually being in our new home.

Friday, July 4, 2014

House Update!

This Week:
//Cabinets finished except for some trim & couple hardware pieces
//Wednesday- Attic insulation installed
//Thursday-Purchased Decking Rails, Caps, etc. at Tallahassee store- they didn't have locally.
//Friday (today)- Husband is working on deck while I pack & go through things
//Saturday- More deck work + husband putting on hardi-board for exterior lights & meter-box
//Sunday- same as above- packing, deck-work, also purchase exterior lighting.

Next Week:
//House Insurance Quote being worked on.
//Monday- Lighting- all lights will go in next Monday
//Monday- Wood Floors being delivered
//Wednesday- lights turned on
//Friday- Garage doors being installed
//Saturday- buy & put in tile for bathroom & laundry room

+ Some time in between everything- we will have to move all of our belongings & clean our apartment so we don't have to worry about any additional apartment fees. We also need to install the hardwood floors, walk in closet shelving, pantry shelving.

Week of July 21st:
//Granite- install date July 21st
//Plumber- will finish install (toilet, sinks, faucets, etc.) July 22nd
//County Inspection- approve & get CO so we can officially move in!

This is the granite color that we chose for our kitchen.

These are the hand-scraped wood floors that we chose for the living room, kitchen, dining room, bedroom, closets & hallway

Once we move in, it's just the beginning of more things to do like hardi-board siding install & paint, painting rafters, landscaping, buying everything from wine glasses, dinnerware to mattresses. We have tried to eliminate as much items as we could to keep from having to move so much this time.

It's been so much work but also very rewarding to see everything come together- I love that my husband and I designed everything together- we even worked on the house plan with both of us planning & inputting ideas- we have always been a great team and love doing things together. I can't wait until the day we move in- I just want it to be the two of us, celebrating all of our hard work and enjoying the moment together:)

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Where Feet May Fail..

Oceans- Where Feet May Fail
By Hillsong United

You call me out upon the waters

The great unknown, where feet may fail

And there I find You in the mystery

In oceans deep, my faith will stand

And I will call upon Your name

And keep my eyes above the waves

When oceans rise

My soul will rest in Your embrace

For I am Yours, and You are mine

Your grace abounds in deepest waters

Your sovereign hand will be my guide

Where feet may fail and fear surrounds me

You've never failed, and You won't start now

So I will call upon Your name

And keep my eyes above the waves

When oceans rise

My soul will rest in Your embrace

For I am Yours, and You are mine

Spirit lead me where my trust is without borders

Let me walk upon the waters

Wherever You would call me

Take me deeper than my feet could ever wander
And my faith will be made stronger
In the presence of my Savior