Our Little Yellow House

August 26, 2016

calliedavis-marilyn-1015 Trust me when I tell you, this blogpost has been a long time coming. I am thrilled to finally be sharing our home renovations with you. It has been put at the end of my to do list for over a year, and I’ve finally been given myself intentional time to make it happen!

A couple of months before Jamie and I got engaged, Jamie’s uncle told him and his brother that he had decided to give each of them a house. I’ll never forget the moment when Jamie shared the news with me. At first, I was completely in shock and incredibly encouraged by such generosity. Then it hit me. This would soon be our home. We weren’t engaged yet, so we couldn’t say what we wanted to each other out loud, so we just looked at each other with tears in ours eyes and smiled really big. To be honest, I contemplated sharing this story because it’s so personal, but when I think about it all, I decided that you can’t get a true understanding and feeling for our home without knowing the whole story. It is the most generous gift we have ever received and has forever changed the way that we view giving generously, living everyday with a thankful and humble heart, and why we feel so strongly about hospitality and allowing our home to be a place to serve others.

When Jamie asked his uncle why he was doing this, he said “When I was young and starting my life, your grandfather helped me buy my first house, and told me that in return I had to do the same thing for someone else.” To this day it still brings tears to my eyes to think that Jamie’s grandfather, who I never got the chance to meet had a hand in our first home. Now that you know the story, I hope you will understand why we are so in love with this little house. It’s more than just a home for us, but a legacy for our family.

After we got engaged, we began dreaming, drawing and planning some possible renovations for our little house.  My parents are a dream team. With my dad working in the home building industry and my mom having her college degree in interior design, I grew up moving and living in lots of different beautiful homes that they designed, built and sold. As you can imagine, my parents were an incredible resource for us. They spent countless hours with us discussing and drawing out plans, helping us find contractors, putting out fires through the process, keeping us in line when it came to keeping things within budget and making sure we added value with each decision and purchase, and emotionally encouraging us to not to get too caught up in the little details. We were planning a wedding, renovating a house and trying to make plans for our life together all at the same time. Looking back, we handled it with such grace and confidence, but I’m not sure that I would do it again under those circumstances. It was a lot to handle.

Jamie and I can never thank my parents enough for all of their guidance and support during this process. When it was clear that our renovations weren’t going to be completed by our wedding date, they joyfully invited us into their home. Yes, they picked us up from the airport from our honeymoon and we went home to live with them for 57 days. And although it wasn’t an ideal scenario, we are so thankful for their hospitality and the time that we got to spend with them during that time. The day that we finally got to move into our little yellow house felt so right. It just felt like home and more importantly after we put so much work into it, it felt like our home.

Welcome to our little yellow house!

Before:
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After:
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Stats:
Built in 1952
.25 acres
1,655 heated square footage
3 bedrooms
2 bathrooms

For the next couple of weeks, I’ll be walking through each room in detail about the renovations that we did and I’ll be sharing some of the inspiration behind our design! Be sure to stay tuned!

Steamboat Springs, Colorado

August 24, 2016

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This summer, my best friend Mary Courtney and I flew out to Steamboat Springs, Colorado to spend a long weekend with my mom and it was one of my favorite trips of the summer! For the past couple of years, my mom has moved to Colorado for the summer to train for her upcoming races, hike and explore, and because she just loves it out there, and I don’t blame her. The weather is amazing – think warm days, cool evenings, and zero humidity and the mountains are breathtaking.

We packed our long weekend with tons of amazing activities, most of which took place outside. We tubed down the Yampa River, hiked Devil’s Causeway, Fish Creek Falls and hiked up the Steamboat Springs Ski Resort and took the gondola down, went to the local rodeo two nights in a row, and woke up early to go to the annual hot air balloon rodeo.

Film Processing: Indie Film Lab

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The Proposal

August 11, 2016

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After a year of praying, conversations and growth, I was finally ready to tell Jamie that I was ready to get married. Jamie on the other hand had been patiently waiting for me for over a year. On July 4th, 2013, Jamie and I sat on a bench at the beach and I gave him a prayer that I wrote explaining how and why I felt called to marriage with him. From that moment that I shared my feelings with him, I was ready to be engaged. I was so anxious and ready for it to happen but I knew that trusting in the Lord’s plan was the only way that I was going to get through this period of trusting and waiting on Jamie and his timing. What a sweet time of life that was when I was totally not in control.

When Jamie proposed on August 11th, 2013 after an amazing weekend with my best friends, I was completely surprised. I had anticipated that it would not happen until November or December of that year, but he was ready and couldn’t wait a day longer. Blair, Mary Courtney, Rachael and I spent the weekend at Lake Gaston. We ate a lot, laughed even more and baked in the sun until we were forced inside because of the sunset. It’s one of my favorite weekends of the year and I am thankful that the weekend that I got engaged was spent with them. They know me so well – how to distract me, confuse me and keep my mind off of getting engaged but on it enough so that I don’t think something is wrong. What sneaky and amazing friends they are. You see, the whole weekend they knew what would be happening Sunday night and they keep it a perfect secret. I still don’t understand how I didn’t catch on to their sneaky plans of painting my nails, making sure that I was wearing something cute on Sunday and keeping sunscreen on me so that I wouldn’t be sunburned for the pictures (later to find out these were all of Jamie’s requests).

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I left the lake refreshed and full. I got back to Raleigh just in time to get to work. Honestly, it was the last place that I wanted to be. Jamie texted me halfway through work asking about our plans to hang out that night, since I hadn’t seen him all weekend. I told him all I wanted to do was relax and hang out at my house but he had different plans for us. He told me that he had a “surprise” and being the brat I can be sometimes, I told him I really didn’t want to go. He then told me “I wouldn’t drag you to do something if it wasn’t worth it. Just trust me.” So I did. I still didn’t think anything of it. He told me he would pick me up from my house after work. We got in the car and started driving towards NC State campus. He was speeding and I remember asking him if we were in a hurry. He casually said “oh sorry, I didn’t even realize I was doing that” (yeah right) As we got closer to the NC State Arboretum, I guessed that we were going there because for the past month or two we had been talking about going and walking around. We had done it a couple time in the past and I loved it so I just thought, “oh that’s sweet, he’s probably just taking me there before the flowers die for the winter.”

We parked on the street and got out of the car and started walking. I noticed that he was walking fast and seemed in a hurry. I said “Jamie, why are you walking so fast? This isn’t fun, you’re not even holding my hand or letting me look at the flowers.” So with his sweaty, clammy hand, he took mine and we continued to walk all the way to the back rose garden, the spot where he had chosen earlier to ask me to be his wife. He was walking in front of me holding my hand and he all of a sudden, he stopped walking and pulled me around so that I was facing him. With both of my hands in his hands he said, “Callie.” It was in that very moment, I knew exactly what was happening and I began backing up, cupping my mouth and crying. I honestly couldn’t believe that it was happening. When I started crying, he got teary-eyed which made me cry even more. My first thought was, “This is it, take it all in Callie. You will remember this moment for the rest of your life.” And that is exactly what I did. I listened carefully to all of his sweet words, even though now I don’t remember most of them but what I do remember is that he told me the sweetest words that he will ever tell me for the first time.

I love you Callie.

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He then reached in his pocket for the ring and my heart stopped beating. I was so excited to see the ring that he had picked out for me. But it wasn’t a TV moment. It wasn’t in a glamorous box that opened smoothly, where the ring is glowing inside. Instead he pulled out a small white drawstring bag that was carrying the ring. Bless his heart, he had tied the strings so tight so it wouldn’t fall out and he couldn’t get it untied. So I waited and we laughed. He finally got it out, dropped the bag on the ground and with both of his hands held the most beautiful ring I had ever laid my eyes on. He dropped to one knee and said “Callie, will you marry me?” I sobbed and said yes as he put that ring on my finger. Jamie later told me that because I was crying so hard, my makeup was just running down my face and it looked like a murder scene. Not what I would have planned.

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As we hugged, kissed and took in those special moments he pulled back and told me there was another surprise. I turned around to see Will and Nancy pop out of the bushes with their cameras. He had them capture the whole thing on camera. I continued to cry as they came over to us and congratulated us. Nancy told us that she wanted to take some pictures of us around the arboretum. Meanwhile, it was a hundred degrees outside and all of us were so sweaty but I wasn’t going to turn down pictures that I knew I would look at for the rest of my life.

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We couldn’t stop telling each other “I love you.” The words that I had waited so long to tell my future husband. The words I had held back from Jamie for over a year. The wait was so worth it and each time made it more real. It was a promise that I will continue to relive each day, for the rest of my life.

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After pictures, Nancy and Will told us goodbye. We continued to walk around the arborteum, enjoying each moment and step as an engaged couple. As we began walking back to the car, I started asking all the questions – the process, the ring, did you ask my dad, did you ask my brother, who knows this was happening? The flood of emotions just continued on as I heard each piece of the puzzle. The way Jamie had done everything was so thought through and perfect. When we got to the car, I began looking for my phone. Of course, I wanted to take a picture and it was no where to be found. Unplanned, I realized that I had left my phone at home. Jamie told me we had dinner reservations so we could stop by my house and pick up my phone on the way.

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When we pulled onto my parent’s street and got closer to my house, I saw all the cars and I knew. When we pulled into the driveway, I saw a big heart that read “Here comes the Bride” and saw all of our immediate family. How sweet it was for them to be the first people that we saw and hugged. Of course, Nancy and Will were there to capture every sweet hug and interaction with the ones we love so dearly. She smiled a sneeky smile at me because earlier she had told me goodbye. We walked along the path towards the front door and when I opened the door, I was completely shocked. My family had organized everything so perfectly, with Mary Courtney, Blair and Rachael standing on the stairs to be the next people to see, the rest of my family to the left in the office and the rest of our friends in the family room. This could have been some disorganized, overwhelming commotion of people but my family and Jamie planned it so I could have intimate moments with each friend or family who we love so dearly.

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In the midst of my mom training and preparing for her Ironman, she had created this beautiful party with so many fun details. Framed pictures of Jamie and I, absolutely beautiful flower arrangements filled with hydrangeas, cupcakes spelling out “like to love” and delicious food catered by Raleigh Country Club.

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The night was so much fun and it ended with a sweet, tear-filled champagne toast from my dad. Believe it or not, I cried the whole night. I have never felt so loved and cared for.

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After everyone had left, Jamie and I realized that we hadn’t even taken any time to eat. So we got in the car at 10:00pm to try and find something to eat. We found a McDonald’s and laughed so hard that we would eat fast food on the night we got engaged. We came back to my parent’s house and had some time alone where we talked about the night and all of its details, how we couldn’t wait to get married and start planning a wedding and told each other “I love you” over and over again.

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It wasn’t until I woke up the next morning, with a ring still on my finger that I honestly knew that this whole day was real. I love you William James Davis. I can’t wait to become your wife on May 3rd!

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Charleston Romantic Row House

August 3, 2016

calliedavis-9weststreet-1018 When Jamie and I visited Charleston in April, we stayed in this Historic Romantic Downtown Row House. It is a newly renovated, two story, one bedroom row house with tons of gorgeous natural light and an “Old Warm Charm.” It’s just 2 blocks away from many restaurants, shops and historic sites, and we were able to walk (or bike!) everywhere. We loved the way that it made us feel like we were coming home after a long day, instead of a hotel room! If you are planning a trip to Charleston, we would highly recommend it!

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August 2016 Goals

August 1, 2016

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“Heavenly Father, You are freedom in all of the best ways. You were there before anything had shape or form. Your loves is so full of freedom – so ridiculously lavish and unconditional. Lord, thank You for being the Father to the prodigals who are lost, as well as to the older brothers and sisters who think they’ve got it all figured out. Thank You for offering us the prize of relationship with You. Thank You for taking off all the worldly markings of success and pushing us back to Jesus’ work on the cross as a reminder of Your goodness. We’re grateful that You’re not bound by time or people. We’re grateful You’re only bound by what You say to be true of Yourself and by Your promises. Thank You for that. Help us to believe it.”
Prayer by Haley Morgan from Wild & Free

Finish reading Wild and Free and Sweetbitter
Shoot 2 lovely weddings
Spend at weekend at Lake Norman with family
Shoot 1 roll of personal film
Begin blogging our home renovation process (!!)
Try 1 week of Hello Fresh
Finish making this blanket for our guest room
Create prayer cards suggested in A Praying Life by Paul Miller and begin praying through this guide

Happy August!