Well, I'm a day late in updating about our apartment, but I hope my readers will forgive me for that (all 2 of you) :).
So, right now we're living in one of the suburbs of Minneapolis, and we are just loving it. We are 20 minutes from downtown, 15 minutes away from the Mall of America, and what makes it all amazing is that it doesn't FEEL like we're close to a city! Living in Chicago, you would have to travel really far in order to feel like you're actually in nature and not part of the city. But here... well, here it's just awesome. There are parks and lakes everywhere (no, really. It's not called the land of a thousand lakes for nothing!), and just 15 minutes away there is a HUGE park where the river flows and there is an AMAZING waterfall! Eric took me there for our date a couple weeks ago, and it was so awesome. I kept telling him that I couldn't believe we lived so close to something so beautiful, because in CO you have to travel to the mountains in order to see something as cool as that.
As far as our apartment goes, I love that too. :) It's so cozy and nice, and I'm really excited to finish decorating it. We're almost there, which is really nice. We just need to pick up a few things and then put pictures on the walls. Our guest room isn't going to be ready anytime soon, but that'll definitely be a longer project that we do together at some point when we're not busy (which won't be happening anytime in the near future). Here are some pictures of our apartment for you guys. :)
Isn't it so cute? :) And I'm SO glad that we had an accent wall painted before we moved in. It makes things feel even nicer and homey. They did that for free too, which was really cool. We can have accent walls painted for a low cost in any of our rooms as well, so we might do that at some point to our bedroom and guest room. We have a BEAUTIFUL view out our porch as well, if you couldn't tell. There are also walking trails around the property, which is really cool considering we're literally right on the highway. I can hear the highway all the time, but it's not as bad as I thought it would be. It makes me feel like I'm in Chicago again, and I'm okay with that. After living there for so long I really got used to hearing noises all the time, so it's really strange (and eerie) for me when I don't hear anything at all. Plus, it's incredibly convenient to live right on the highway as well - it makes it SO much easier to get to everything! I'm really enjoying our location. It has been really nice so far. We have a grocery store that is, at the most, 3 minutes away from us, and the place where I get my hair cut is the same distance as well. We have a gas station with reasonable gas prices (2 stations, actually) right on our block, and we have multiple restaurants right by us.
So... on to what our life actually looks like together. It's definitely busy and we're running around all the time, but I wouldn't trade it for the world. Marriage just fits us. We had such a difficult time with our long-distance relationship, and now that we're married.... it just works. It's like we were supposed to get married or something. ;) But really... it's great. We're really enjoying being together. Eric works a lot which is sometimes frustrating, but definitely understandable. And with all our bills and payments that we have to make, it's a good thing that he's working as much as he is - we need the money! (Doesn't everybody?)
I also got a full-time job, which I am INCREDIBLY grateful for! I am a barista at Caribou Coffee, and I couldn't be happier. I've always wanted to work at a coffee shop, and I'm thrilled to have the opportunity to do so. It has definitely been a challenge to get used to it and learn everything that I need to, but I'm hoping that soon I'll get the hang of it and things will just come naturally. I know what some of you may be thinking: But what are your plans for a long-term career?
...Honestly... I don't really have any. And I'm okay with that. I was just recently asked by someone at church when I told them where I was working what my long-term goals were (really nice guy, but definitely a business man) and I felt bad at first for being so excited to work at Caribou. However, once I started thinking about it, I realized that it doesn't really matter what I'm doing. I'm loving what I do, and that's what matters. I make decent money, I get awesome benefits, and Caribou is an amazing company to work for. I couldn't be happier. And who knows... maybe one day I'll be able to work for corporate! Now THAT would be really cool. :)
So, I DO have daydreams about things that I could do one day, but it's really all in God's hands. I am completely content with where He has placed me right now (which actually took a while, so I'm thrilled that I'm at that place now), and I'm looking forward to seeing what He has in store for me here. God is good, and I know that His plans are better than any that I could have for myself. So... because this opportunity for Caribou opened so easily, I walked through it without any reservations or regrets, because I know without a doubt that it came from Him.
Well, this ended up being a really long post. I'm sure I'll update you all again in the very near future on our life and what's going on. Love you!