Thursday, September 12, 2013

My Husband's 23rd Birthday Extravaganza.

Cole is officially the big 2-3! 
To say he had a good birthday/week/month, would be a VAST understatement.

Not only was he spoiled rotten, but he also got the job of his dreams.
So, conveniently, for the first time in a long time, we had money TO spoil him with.

On Monday we went on the first date we have been able to go on in probably months.

Every time we go on a date, I'm pretty sure the waitress thinks we're dating.
We're that annoying "honeymoon" couple who sits on the same side of the booth and flirts.
We're ridiculous, but I milk it for all it's worth!

Tuesday morning I woke Cole up with "pre-birthday" balloons and presents.

You just need to understand something about me - I am obsessed with holidays. I am obsessed with traditions. I make every birthday waaaay more extreme than it needs to be. I take them very seriously! I was raised to take them very seriously. Cole's family is a normal family, so they treat birthdays normal, like most people do. That's the way he was raised. So it was fun to do "my version" of celebrating his birthday, while he was expecting a normal day.

So, yes, I even celebrate "pre-birthdays". Or, "birthday-eves", if you will. 
Not only did I scare the crap out of him by letting balloons go in our room (hahahha I wish I would have been filming so badly), but I surprised him with his first present - a trip to the Peery Hotel!

Now, most of you are thinking, "Wowwww Amanda, a trip to Salt Lake. How exotic of you." But because of Cole's constant working, and because of the lack of money we have had, we never go on trips. I mean, our honeymoon was 2 days long, to Midvale, Utah. So, even though it was just to Downtown Salt Lake, it was so exciting for us! We were like little kids on a trip to the Zoo.

When we were first married, we had quite a bit of money. We both had full-time jobs, all our debt was paid off, so really the only "necessities" we had to pay for were rent and food. Because of this, a lot of weekends were spent at the Outlet Mall and Scheels. 

So, the first thing we did after we checked-in to the hotel was head straight to the Gateway mall. And, of course, because Cole is Cole, he ended up buying me presents for his birthday. 

While walking the streets of Downtown Salt Lake, we kept getting some SERIOUS de-ja-vu. At first, we couldn't figure out why. But then, we realized, literally every street we walked on, we had taken engagement pictures at. We were pumped to reminisce! 

Because I take birthdays so seriously, I got kind of worried a little bit into the trip. I kept freaking out that I didn't plan enough things to do, or that he was going to get bored on his birthday, and all that jazz. And when we figured out that the hotel TV only had about 13 channels, ruining my plan of letting him watch football [his favorite thing in the world], I started to panic. And it only took about 3 minutes after the TV meltdown to be reminded that I have fun with Cole in any circumstance. Because, seriously, for the next 4 hours we had summersault competitions, laughed, jumped on the bed, laughed, danced like idiots, laughed, and laughed some more. The part that wasn't planned exactly right, turned out to be one of the funnest nights I've had ever. 

We woke up and went to "The Original House Of Pancakes". We still keep looking at each other and saying, "HOW. How was that so good?!" We are in awe, and we will certainly be back.

Ok. I know that Cole is 23. But that didn't stop me from throwing him a Birthday Party worthy of a 5-year-old. Dollar store decorations, singing, Root Beer Floats, and our best friends/family. I laughed the whole time. 

My excuse is that he never got to experience a "Call Family Birthday Party" when he was little, so I was making up for lost time.

But in all reality, it's because we are still kids. 
Some people say getting married matures you - but, if anything, getting married has only brought out the immaturity in us even more. 

SO NOW, in honor of Cole Ryan Peterson's 23rd birthday, I am going to tell you 23 things I've grown to love about him, since his 22nd birthday. 

1. I can't think of one single boyfriend I've ever had that my family has loved. Scratch that, I can't think of one single boyfriend I've ever had that my family has even liked. But from the second I started dating Cole Peterson, he just melted right in with my family. They didn't even skip a beat. It's like he has been in our family forever. Cole is not a son-in-law or a brother-in-law, he's just a son, and he's just a brother. He has the exact same sense of humor as Mitch. He has the exact same temperament as Jake. He has the exact maturity level as Toby. He has the exact same "love to learn" as my Dad. In fact, he has become my Dad's favorite "Show-Off-Child." And he makes my Mom laugh, as much as he makes me laugh. I am such a home body. For real. It was really hard for me to accept the fact that I was going to have to move out of my house, and not be with my family every day. I cried a lot of nights about it before I was married. But Cole loves being with my family even more than I do, sometimes. Most of the time, I end up being the one dragging Cole out of my house. He loves my family, they love him right back, and it just was the easiest transition in the world to add a new member to the Call Family. 

2. This is one I didn't know before my wedding day, but have learned in the past 7 months of being married to Cole. He makes me feel safe. For example: this week, as we were in Downtown Salt Lake, walking the streets in the dark, passing by drug deals (that's not even an exaggeration, I'll explain later), I felt perfectly content and at ease holding Cole's hand. Cole Peterson will always protect me. He will always make sure I am safe. And that is a feeling I never knew would be so important to me, going into this marriage. 

3. I always tell everyone that "Cole was everything I wasn't looking for." He is everything I never dated. He is everything I never knew I wanted. Really, he is opposite of everything I thought would make me happy. But the one thing I always knew I wanted in a husband, before I even met Cole, was that I needed to be able to have intelligent conversations with my future spouse. I needed someone who would challenge my mind, and make me smarter. I needed someone who cared about important matters, and could discuss church material, and politics, and just the world in general. And that is exactly what I got by marrying Cole. We are always teaching each other, you know? It is so fun to come home and be able to tell him about something I learned while reading a talk. Not only will he listen to me explain my excitement about it, but he will discuss it with me and share his opinions, and mirror my excitement. He is just one giant vault of information. He knows everything about everything, and everything about nothing. Because we are so interested in such different things, we are always teaching each other. I love nothing more than I love laying in bed with Cole Peterson at night, having long, important conversations about important things, or just about nothing at all. 

4. We have extremely different interests. Like, before I married Cole Ryan, I had zero interests in shooting guns. Actually, before I married Cole Ryan, I hated guns. I had shot one gun in my life, without being taught how to hold it, and it freaking almost blew my shoulder off. Now, I crave the adrenaline of shooting as I sit at my cushy desk. I was raised camping. Even when I was too little to appreciate it, my parents made it a point to take us camping. Cole didn't grow up with that love. And there has never been anything cuter than watching the excitement in his eyes as he has developed a love for camping, and fishing, and everything outdoorsy. I

t has just been the best thing in the world learning to care about the things he cares about. And visa versa. I love that we have extremely different interests, and that we are developing new-found loves, together. 

5. We may have polar-opposite interests, but we laugh at all the same things. We laugh more than we even talk. We find all the same shows funny, we find all the same jokes funny, we find all the same irony funny, all the same sarcasm funny, all the same pictures funny. My marriage with Cole is just one giant laugh-session. 

6. He is obsessed with German Shepherds. Not even because they are Police dogs, or because they are manly dogs, or because they are smart. When he sees a German Shepherd, my manly Cop husband melts, and turns into this giant softie. He even uses that voice parents use when talking to their babies. Cole Peterson has a weakness for German Shepherds I didn't even know people had. And that is coming from a girl who has been raised with 2 German Shepherds. And for some reason I adore it.

7. On the job he's tough - even ruthless at times. He has no problem making a woman cry if she was texting while driving, or arresting a 17-year-old girl. He is a tough, responsible, moral officer. But Officer Peterson is a completely different person than Amanda Peterson's Husband. He leaves that tough, brutal guy at work, and comes home a Giant Teddy-Bear, who wants nothing more than to cuddle and tell me about his day. 

8. So I tell you how much I love that he's a softie. But, I also love that he's a man. He loves shooting guns, and America [MURICA!], and football, and mowing the lawn, and anything that could possibly turn into a competition. He is all-boy, and I have a huge crush on him.

9. Like I said while explaining his "Birthday Week," we can do nothing for hours, and have fun the whole time. I always tell you how I fell in love with Cole "sittin' in the dirt." And I continue to fall in love with him, doing nothing at all. He is my best friend at all hours of the day, and my favorite memories have ended up looking a lot like laying on the couch, laughing our heads off. 

10. I am a hypochondriac. Literally. If somebody tells me they have a sickness, I immediately start to feel the symptoms. If I have a headache, I will look up the symptoms online for hours, and close the computer with the belief that I need to go to the hospital. My poor husband has been sent to the store way too many times to fetch me a pregnancy test, even though I have a high-functioning IUD. I am always sick, always in pain, and always complaining about it. It drives my mom crazy. After 21 years of being "sick", she has no sympathy left for me anymore, and rolls her eyes every time I tell her of my "new symptom." Cole is sympathetic every time. He hugs me, tells me how sorry he is, asks if he can do anything for me, and spends the rest of the night tending to my "illness." He knows I'm a hypochondriac. He knows there is a very good chance that my "sickness" is just in my head. But he continues to dote on me and make me feel important and cared for. He has never been impatient with it once, and there just aren't people like him in this world.

11. Before I married Cole, I was trained to believe that fighting was a result of passion. The more you fought, the more you cared about each other. I believed that the more you loved someone, the more intense your fights would get. I was convinced that fighting was a very normal thing. THIS. IS. NOT. TRUE. It is not real. It is not normal. It is not a result of love. And it was something that was really hard for me to get out of my head, even after I was married. This is one of the greatest things that Cole has taught me, and it is absolutely one of the reasons we are so happy. We do not fight. We do not yell. We do not storm off and leave the room. We do not "punish each other". Don't get me wrong, at the beginning of this relationship I would fight with him, but he refused to ever fight back. I am not saying there have not been things we have disagreed on. I am not saying there are not times I have been annoyed, or had my feelings hurt, or just plain woke up in the wrong side of the bed. I am still human, and I am still definitely a moody girl. But we sit down, talk it out, and it is solved within minutes. Fighting isn't normal, it isn't love, and Cole is proof of that. 

12. He loves to go on walks. This seems really simple compared to the other things I love about him, but I value walks at night with Cole more than he will ever know. I love that he loves to hold my hand. I love that he loves to just simply talk to me, and be with me. And I love my walks with him. 

13. He "plays games" with me. He really is a kid who married a kid. We are always hiding, trying to scare each other. He once purchased silly string, just to spray me with it while I was showering. I'll tickle him until he runs out of the room. Somehow, almost everything we do turns into a competition. We just have a really light, fun, silly relationship, and I love the young-at-heart Cole I get to "play" with.

14. When we were engaged, every time we passed something, he would say, "I could build that." At first, it turned into a joke that I would make fun of him for. We would pass something, and I would say, "you could build that," and then laugh. But after we got married, I was way surprised to see that he wasn't kidding. He can build anything. He can make anything crappy look awesome. And it is so cute to watch him "design" our future house, with things he can build himself. I mean, he spends his days off helping his dad re-model their basement. Not just to help his dad, but because he genuinely likes fixing things, and building things, and learning new skills. He is the master of all trades, and it is definitely something I feel way lucky to have in my life.

15. He loves Girl-Rock-Bands. Hahah. I love this so much. A) Is the funniest ever, and so unlikely. B) It is a mutual love, that I'm pretty sure only exists in our marriage. Paramore, Fireflight, Halestorm. Need I say more? My all-man husband loves Girl Bands. Hahah I LOVE MY LIFE.

16. Everything he says is funny. Literally. I've come to the conclusion, whether he admits it or not, that his main goal in life is to make me laugh. And he definitely succeeds. He is the funniest human being I have ever come into contact with, and I laugh way too much. At church, at work, at the doctor's. No matter how inappropriate the circumstance, I always ends up physically straining to hold in my laughter, and failing. He knows exactly what makes me laugh, and he definitely uses that to his advantage. But even more than that, he is funny without even trying to be funny. He just was freaking made for me, I know it.

17. HE LOVES FOOTBALL. This should be something I hate, right? I immediately cease to exist if there is a football game, and don't even get me started on dates to Buffalo Wild Wings or Chili's. But I secretly think it's the cutest thing in the world. He sits 2 inches from the screen, in a complete trance. He yells and cheers and lights up. He will sit on the couch with my brother and dad for hours, and just watch and commentate and refuse to acknowledge my existence. We wake up on Saturday mornings, without hesitation, to watch his brother's games. It is the the reason for such intense conversations with his dad and brothers. So sometimes it's the worst thing in the world for his needy/clingy wife, but it definitely melts my heart watching him bond with the most important boys in my life. So thank you football, I guess!

18. He takes thousands and thousands of pictures with me. Literally. I mean, he does have his limit. But his limit is WAY MORE than any other Homosapien on the planet Earth. I'm pretty sure most of his life he feels like he's married to the paparazzi. But he tolerates it. And he patiently poses in front of the camera, while I set the self-timer. And he makes himself laugh out loud, just because he knows how important it is to me. He's an Amanda-Pleaser at it's finest, and I appreciate him. Plus, lucky for me, he's just so damn photogenic!

19. We have been dating for over a year. We have been married for 7 months. We live together. And I still miss him the second he leaves. I don't know how other people's marriages are, but it just doesn't seem normal to me that I can be with him every second of every day, and still manage to miss him for the few hours we're apart. 

20. He's so quick to appreciate. If I clean the house, he will thank me the second he walks in the door and smells the Clorox [If it don't smell like Clorox, it ain't clean]. If I make dinner, he thanks me 10 times before he even tastes it. When I come home tired from 9 hours of staring at a stupid computer screen, the first thing he does is thank me for "working so hard". He is just always appreciative, always making a conscious effort to make me feel good about myself, and quick to notice the small details. My Mom and I were laughing the other day, because she cut 4 inches off her hair, and it took my dad 2 days to notice - I parted my hair literally a centimeter to the left, and the first thing Cole did when he saw me was comment on "how good my new hair-part looked". It is so easy to be Cole Peterson's wife.

21. He gets SO EXCITED about the tiniest things. A new air freshener, new socks, his 1991 Honda Accord, edging the yard, a souvenir key chain. My mom always comments on "how fun it is to give Cole presents," because he acts like everything he receives is the best thing he's ever seen in his life. It's contagious, and I love him for making me love the little things.

22. He is A-L-W-A-Y-S happy. Always. After a 12-hours shift of a job he's not getting paid for, he wakes up at 6 in the morning, happy as can be. Laying in bed, watching 3 episodes of The Office with his lounging wife; happy the whole time. Cleaning the house? Happy. Filling up the car with gas? Happy. Working the night shift? Happy. Getting 3 hours of sleep? Happy Happy Happy. 
Like, wake me up early in the morning, and you're dead. But I'll wake Cole up at 2:00 in the morning, because I had a bad dream, and his response is, "Are you okay babe?! Come here." He is just the happiest boy in the world, and it has done wonders for this marriage, and just for my view on relationships and life in general.

23. Last but not least, this "fire" has certainly not faded a single inch. I mean, our relationship has changed in the sense that I don't wear makeup half the time, we have to poop in the same house, and he plays Polynesian music when we're getting ready. I hate Polynesian music. But people are always telling me how after you get married, the "flame" dies and turns into just a mutual concern for each other. That is not the case for this Peterson marriage. This love is just as intense as it was the day I realized I loved him. It is exciting and feels like it's the first time I've kissed him every time we kiss. He laughs sometimes when asking me, "why I have the chills so bad," and I know it's because he just knows that he has that effect on me. I get weak in the knees when he puts his uniform on, and my stomach drops a little when he sends me texts. People always make fun of me for saying that "I have a crush" on my own husband, but I really do. I don't just love him, and I don't just have a concern for his well-being, I have this world-tipping, light-headed, weak-in-the-knees crush on him that I'm not sure will ever start to fade.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO MY 23-YEAR-OLD HUSBAND!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!