The question I have been asked in the comments and in emails the most by far is why are there 11 (or 12) people in our house! Here is your first answer:
The above picture was taken during the Christmas holidays and from left to right is: My husband, me, brother#4, brother#3, brother#1, sister#3, brother#2, sister#1, sister#2. Not included in the picture is my parents and if you add up all those people, you would get 11. Throw in a couple of brother#2 and sister#2's friends that some days seem to be practically living in our house, bedding down right outside our bedroom and using our bathroom....it adds up to 12ish people around the clock.
So that answers the first question of why
We didn't originally plan to move to Maryland before the wedding (as if we didn't already have enough going on) but circumstances occurred making it abundantly clear that we were supposed to be living in Maryland ASAP. It was something that we had hoped to do a couple of years down the road when we started our own family, so we could be closer to my family. It was still quite a mental adjustment for both hubs and I to be moving to Maryland so much earlier. But two months before the wedding we packed up and moved...did I mention we had a whole house in Boston? Did I also mention that hubs and I furnished the entire house and were the "managers" of the house (aka bore the financial responsibility)? The moving decision was made and we were given a couple of months to finalize everything. Finish our degrees, finish the CPA, get one of our cars dropped off in MD & come back to Boston to dump as much of our furniture as we could on craigs list, pack the rest of it in a MASSIVE moving truck all by ourselves in two days and drive it all down, all by ourselves, driving through the night, only to unload it all in storage (for what we thought would only be a couple of months) and a few days later start our new jobs in Maryland. *Phew*
We moved into my family's house for what was supposed to be a couple of months, the original plan consisted of the two months before the wedding and a month after the honeymoon while we figured out the best location to live. Well...a year and a half later we are still living here. :) We should have known right? We came back from the honeymoon and I found out that while I was gone the company had made the decision that I was to be "deployed" in my job the following Monday and would be traveling all over out of town for the majority of the next 7 months. Welcome to wedded bliss right? This dramatically changed our plans as we didn't want to invest money in something while I was gone (hubs was already going to be in and out of town for his job) and so, we slept on a double mattress for two weeks in the living room of my parent's house (along with the 10+ other people living in the house) while my dad split the finished basement in half and built half of it into a room big enough for us to live in. Both my husband and I ended up leaving our jobs for other jobs midway through last year but in the meantime, an option for a house had came up during all the turmoil that we decided to go for and for the last year we have been renovating a barn-turned house into a home. It's a bit small but it's got plenty of room for us and even a couple of kiddies squeezed in down the road before we'll have to start thinking about moving. The house had to be torn down to the studs and COMPLETELY renovated if you catch my drift. In the meantime, we've been continuing to living in our basement quarters so as to be able to work on the renovations every day after work and save money.
That whole year of 2008 is what hubs and I jokingly refer to as the black hole of our lives. We went through so much that year, on top of everything I wrote above, my body decided to shut down and start an all-out-internal war within me and weight I didn't have to loose was melting off me faster than ice cream on a super hot day. We went through so much emotionally, mentally, physically and spiritually and survived (!!) that we knew we were meant to be together forever. I love him so much! 2009 continued the theme of change and adaptability-we experienced so much growth in our relationship and communication and, as a result, drew a lot closer to each other. 2010 will more than likely carry the theme as well, though we are hoping it will feel a little bit more like adventure and a lot less like a zombie walk.
And so ends part 1 of our story, stay tuned for part 2 tomorrow....