Two years ago

When I opened up my One Year Bible this morning, Oct. 22 had a big circle around it and a note about 2007. I received the Bible as a gift from my then-small group leader, Deb, and began reading through it on Oct. 22, 2007. I have read through the Bible twice now! It is crazy to think of it like that, because the Word always seems fresh to me. God helps me understand different verses in different ways at different times.

The reading for today was Jeremiah 39:1-41:18, 2 Timothy 1:1-18, Psalms 90:1-91:16, Proverbs 26:1-2 [Read Online].

I especially liked these verses in Psalm 91 to reflect on as Rafa and I continue to prepare for marriage. God gives us some amazing promises!
9 If you make the Lord your refuge, if you make the Most High your shelter,
10 no evil will conquer you; no plague will come near your home.
11 For he will order his angels to protect you wherever you go.
12 They will hold you up with their hands so you won’t even hurt your foot on a stone.
13 You will trample upon lions and cobras; you will crush fierce lions and serpents under your feet!
14 The Lord says, “I will rescue those who love me. I will protect those who trust in my name.
15 When they call on me, I will answer; I will be with them in trouble. I will rescue and honor them.
16 I will reward them with a long life and give them my salvation.”

The rest of the story…

I had to check with Rafa before I told the funny part of our mentor meeting publicly :)

Last night, our mentors asked us if we were waiting to have sex until we are married, and we said yes. Then Dan made a comment about our wedding night. Rafa said, “No, lunch,” as in, we are having a lunch reception so we don’t have to wait until our wedding night. It took a few minutes of laughing to explain that one with a red face!

God is good and has given us a wonderful gift to give to each other when that time comes. That’s probably all I need to say about that right now!

Squash and Mentors

We met with our awesome mentor couple, Dan and Kita, last night. They just celebrated their seventh wedding anniversary and have a lot of wisdom about growing closer as a couple and growing closer to the Lord. They are wonderful teachers and examples. They are also good friends and just really fun to be around :)


Kita made us a delicious dinner of catfish and acorn squash. It was Rafa’s first squash experience and he liked it (I think) – I loved it! MMM. We spent the rest of the night talking about our history, separately and as a couple, and about all the topics we’ve been discussing in Fit to be Tied.

I am so thankful that Dan and Kita are taking time to mentor us. It is important to have a couple here that we can be accountable to and get advice from.

Shopped and dropped

I found my dress! Mom came up to go shopping with Jennifer and I. We started the morning with two appointments. The first one went pretty well. When we started driving to the second one, we saw a place just down the street and decided to stop because we had enough time. They were super nice there and had a ton of great dresses – and I found several I loved in my price range! We had to run out to go to our next appointment, but I couldn’t get those surprise dresses out of my mind. We walked out of that appointment after about 15 minutes.
The last appointment of the day was at David’s Bridal. I was so happy to have Gilda, Adrienne, Beth and Cadie meet up with us in Richfield for that appointment. I was not very happy with the David’s experience and style selections, but it didn’t really matter since I was pretty sure I would be going back to the shop from the morning. I was so so so happy to have these ladies I love so much with me.
So now I know what dress I’m getting!! Jennifer and I are going back this week sometime to order it. We have to put a rush on the shipping to get it in 8-10 weeks, which will get it to me about a month before the wedding. I’m definitely not going to post any pictures, but I will say I will be wearing more white than silver. I was so sure I wanted a silver dress, but through the influences of people who love me and by seeing it on, I’m going traditional.

Happy Sweetest Day

You are probably asking yourself, “what is Sweetest Day?” Let me know if you know, because I have no idea. All I know is that we have cards at Target that say “Sweetest Day, October 17.” I’m pretty sure it’s just a Hallmark ploy to get us to buy heart-shaped cards. I took it to mean that I should make something sweet for my punkin… Pumpkin pie! Rafa is, like, completely in love with pumpkin pies. I have never made one, but I thought today was a good day to try! I think I have a satisfied customer…

The Ring V.2

My father died when I was two years old, he left my mom with two custom graduation rings. One for my brother and the other one for me. My mom was instructed to give us the rings when we graduated from high school (back home is a big deal, since not many people makes it) I got mine back in the year 2000, the ring survived almost 12 year of civil war, six years of poverty and 9 years in the U.S. under my custody. I wish I would know more about the background of the ring, but as far as I know it was about 20 years old before it became my father’s.

I didn’t know my dad enough in life, amazingly I met him in death. He was a great man, and  I know him thru stories. When I was ready to ask Sarah to marry me, I thought about what to do about her ring (after all, I am a designer). When I told my mother about it, she offered me her wedding ring. I said no, because it wasn’t made for Sarah. I prayed and thought about it for a while, and I started missing my dad. Then it was all clear. My dad left his ring for my mom to give it to me after I graduated from High school. Then I realized that it wasn’t high school what my dad tried to honor, but a marker in my life… then I knew… what better marker in my life than me marrying the woman that I love with all my heart?.

Afterwards, I took the ring to a jeweler to see if it had  any “value” the jeweler said it was a very good rock. From there we worked to design Sarah’s ring around the diamond. As far as I know a “three string twine” is more than what Sarah wants in her finger, but I am a designer. My dad’s gift is piece of him, a piece of his family always present in the hand of his son’s wife. I love her with all my heart, that is why it was so easy for me to give her a piece of all that I ever had.

Bible Roulette, Commuting Version

I get a little spoiled on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Rafa has to get up at 5 a.m. to take his mom to dialysis by 6-6:30. Then, since he is already in his car, he swings by my place to join me on the trek into work. We take the bus to the lightrail to downtown most days, but today, he wanted to drive since it was rainy and cold. The $9.45 for parking doesn’t seem like too much when there are snowflakes in the air and Rafa’s throat is scratchy with a cold coming on.
We played Bible roulette on the way in. I shuffled through the pages and started reading when I stopped on a random passage in 2 Timothy. These verses really applied to us as we went off to toil in the offices…
2 Timothy 2:3-7 Endure hardship with us like a good soldier of Christ Jesus. No one serving as a soldier gets involved in civilian affairs—he wants to please his commanding officer. Similarly, if anyone competes as an athlete, he does not receive the victor’s crown unless he competes according to the rules. The hardworking farmer should be the first to receive a share of the crops. Reflect on what I am saying, for the Lord will give you insight into all this.
So just as athletes, soldiers and farmers work hard towards their goals, we need to work with the same ethic in our spiritual pursuits. We have the opportunity to talk to take part in a compassion project on Saturday. Even though a lot of things are distracting us, he focused me back in on the importance of hearing what God was saying to us through His word. When Rafa leads me in things like this, it really reassures me that he will continue to be the spiritual leader of our family when we get married.

The Ring


Rafa gave me a beautiful ring the night he proposed to me (four weeks ago, already!). It is bigger than I expected/ wanted, but there’s a story behind it. The stone is from a ring Rafa’s dad had in El Salvador. When his father died, his mother held on to the ring to give to Rafa later in life. Since Rafa isn’t much of a diamond wearer, he took out the stone and then he designed the rest of the ring around it.
It’s so pretty! When I showed it to Jennifer, she said, “It looks like it was made for you.” It was :)
I would have been happy with any sort of circular band on my left finger… but it is really fun to get just a little distracted by the dazzler on my left hand.
When Rafa’s mom congratulated us, she held my hand and said, “Now you have a piece of my husband, my family, with you.”

We got plans, but He has better plans!

I sent this verse to Sarah this morning, its very fitting  at this point in our lives.
“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”- Jeremiah 29:11

It is really comforting to know that our God has plans for us and for our future, and that he is with us in every step of our future walk.

We can retire!

Target stock went over $50 per share for the first time in a long time. Good news for our retirement, since the majority of our worth is in the Target 401(k) plan.

We’ll be talking about money and expectations in Fit To Be Tied (our pre-marital counseling class) this week. We already know that we are opposite when it comes to clothes/shoe shopping – Rafa spends money for quality, while I prefer to spend on quantity – but we’ll have to dig a little deeper than that. I peeked at the lesson and it comes out and says that money can be a heart matter, as in “where your treasure is, there your heart will be also” (Matt. 6:21). I would like to think that the only treasure we care about is riches in heaven… but I know that isn’t always the case.