Standing in the middle of the dog park last night watching my little boxer play with the bull dog and the ball, I was asked how I met my fiance... That would probably make a great blog post, I thought to myself. And 18 hours later, here I am with the story of how I met Lucy's Daddy!
Rob and I met in September of 2005. I had just moved back to Pennsylvania after having spent 5 years in San Diego, in what had to have been a complete and total lapse of my sanity! (But, I grew up in Western PA- my family was still here!) My little basset, Nicky and I had picked out, and put into escrow a cute little townhouse, rowhouse, or duplex (everyone calls it something different!) in the city of Pittsburgh.
When I moved home, I only brought what I could pack in the Jeep, or what could be shipped via Fed Ex- because in the process of moving to San Diego 5 years earlier- I was the victim of what I'll refer to as "Everything You Own Hijacking". With that in mind, I was very skeptical about once again turning over everything I owned to a truck driver named Bubba who had a piece of grass sticking out from between his teeth. There is something permanently damaging mentally about waiting 3 months for a truck, only to have it arrive and when they open the doors, stuff that you were sure you packed with care, just starts falling out.
Nicky and I had driven from San Diego back to Pennsylvania in what had to have been one of the most scenic drives I've ever been on. I wasn't sure how that was going to turn out, Nicky was only about 9 months old at the time, and I'm sure everyone that heard the plan thought that I had lost my mind intending to drive for a week with a puppy in the car! But, Nicky was a great little travel companion. There were a few insane moments- but for the most part the trip was without incident. As long as I didn't open the moon roof while the vehicle was moving and there was no thunder- everything was just fine. (We hit a horrible wind storm in New Mexico that involved completely black skies at 12 in the afternoon, big weed like things rolling across the highway making it impossible to drive and hail that was larger than my basset.)
Nicky and I drove for 2 days by ourselves. My mom had agreed to fly out to Albequerque, New Mexico to make the remainder of the trip with us. And on the 3rd day, we picked her up at the airport. I'll never forget how long it took my mom to stop laughing when she caught her first glimpse of her little basset grand-dog. For some reason, every time she looked at him- she would giggle. It's a good thing the dog wasn't sensitive.
My Darling Fiance owns a furniture store, and in the process of picking out a dining room table, an attraction bloomed. He didn't ask me out on that first visit to his store, but the 2nd time I returned there, he asked me to go to a Steelers game with him. And that's how it all started. (Of course, over the years, he has told the story many times- and his version of it is quite different. When he tells the tale, I chased him all over the furniture store and begged him to go out with me!)
Our first date involved a very fast moving street bike that scared the living daylights out of me, an inability to find tickets to the proposed Steelers game, and eventually, some very bad pizza! After that first date, I swore to myself that I would never get into another vehicle with him ever again- his driving really freaked me out- and after living in San Diego and driving like my hair was on fire for the past 5 years, that wasn't really saying much! (I always get a good chuckle out of the fact that he gets in the car with me and complains about my driving! Ugh, hello?)
(Thanksgiving 2006- Rob loves his cowboy hats and has a pretty extensive collection of them!)
Not only did I get into another vehicle with him again, but several months later, he and I moved in together and I rented out the house that I had furnished with furniture from his store! (The sweetheart that he is, he took all of the furniture that I had bought from him back and resold it! -- Thanks Baby!)
2 Humans, and 2 dogs (both of which were males, and definitely not used to sharing a house or their humans with anyone else), all of which took some adjusting. Especially when one of those males was a 35 year old bachelor who hadn't lived with another human in years. But somehow we made it all work- obviously because 5 years later- here we are!
(Christmas of 2007)
We've had a lot of fun over the last 5 years- and we've had our challenges too! There were many Thanksgiving & Christmas Dinners (most of which involved some kind of incident that probably should have been followed by therapy- but usually were just glossed over with alcohol), work parties for the employees (again- probably should have been followed by therapy), trips for fun, trips for furniture, drives in fast cars and on way too fast bikes, remodels, changes in work life, family debacles, and the loss of loved ones. When we first started dating, there was only 1 furniture store- then there were 2- then there were 3 and now we're back down to 2, which on most days is 2 too many!
(This picture was taken at our friends Ricky & Karen's wedding last June. Incidentally- today is their one year anniversary! Happy Anniversary Ricky & Karen!! It's my favorite picture of us together!)
Finally, last year, after telling Rob it was the only thing I wanted for my 35th birthday- the big moment that everyone had been waiting for, but never thought they would see- my 38 year old forever bachelor, popped the question after 2 very long months of ring shopping! (I'm sure that there were a lot of people that lost bets on that one- and every bell in hell probably rang- even though I didn't hear them!) We still don't have a date- I hope it doesn't take as long to get married as it did to get engaged- or I'll be going down the aisle with the aid of a walker!
(January 2010; Cancun! This was the first picture we had taken after we got engaged- pathetic I know. My Darling Fiance could take lessons on being gracious about having his picture taking from our boxer!)