"It is true that words drop away, and that the important things are often left unsaid. The important things are learned in faces, in gestures, not in our locked tongues. The true things are too big or too small, or in any case, always the wrong size to fit the template called language. "

Jeanette Winterson, found through the ever lovely Meg

oh hi

Hello again, friends. Here's a random selfie I took to Snapchat my sister a few weeks ago, just in case you forgot what I look like.

It's September. It's September and I'm not ready for it to be September. The autumn decorations are out too soon at Target and internet friends are posting too many wishlists of sweaters. Let's be real: in Texas, I don't think fall comes until like November and right now, I'm okay with that. Let's enjoy these 105 degree days while they're still here and maybe go for some late night swims to rejoice in the fact that we don't freeze our buns off when we get out of the pool yet.

August was quite the month. That list of bold intentions I posted last month has been conquered. I finished grad school with a bang, devoting a few weekends entirely to schoolwork and coming out with a 5/5 on that thesis. Hell yeah. Ben finally came home after a month at his New York base and I was weirdly nervous when I picked him up at the airport. The butterflies washed away the second I saw him and we've been getting into our new groove the past few weeks. We're in our new home, finally, and as I predicted, IKEA and Target have become our second homes as we set this new place up. It's not done, but I love it so far. Settling in and making new places ours is one of my favorite things to do.

You guys don't really care, but work has been crazy. That's the only word for it. Students moved back two weeks ago and since about a week before, it's been utter pandemonium as we got ready for them and now as we all settle in to this new building. 398 students live in this residence hall and I'm in charge of every single one of them plus the operations for the whole building and a student staff of 25 college kids. If that's not a lot for a first job, I don't know what is.

I don't know if you've heard yet, but I'm pretty much a kickboxing pro. While this is not entirely true, I have been asked if I'd like to be an instructor. After a roundhouse kick and a hell yeah, I started training for that and have some more training to do before I go live. The job pretty much consists of wearing a Britney Spears mic, punching things, and bossing people around, so I'm a natural. To be completely honest though, it was such a blessing to be asked. Ben and I had just decided that we couldn't really afford my membership once he started school, and then the next day, they were like hey, do you want to get paid to do this instead of having to pay? I'm thankful. Plus it feels pretty awesome that they saw something in me that made them want to ask if I'd join their team. I knew I wasn't doing all of those push-ups for nothing.

To sum everything up, life is good. I'm in a really good place right now and my sweet Ben is forever at my side. He's happy at his new school with his nerdy engineering classes and I'm proud of him for going back to school for another degree when he could have just forced himself to stay in a field he wasn't happy in. We're continuously learning to serve each other and are both trying really hard to love each other more than we love ourselves. Marriage isn't the easiest thing around, but it sure is worth it. 

Speaking of marriage, my husband is still cozied up in bed being a lazybones on this thunderstorm-y Labor Day, so I'm off to make him some coffee and a bagel and get that boy out of bed. I hope all of you have a nice day off!

a place to call home

In the ever-continuing spirit of documenting the good with bad pictures:

After almost three long months of living out of boxes, we finally have a real, permanent, all-ours, ready to move in to home.

Since starting to pack at the beginning of May, we've been living simply. When I say simply, I mean One-Pot-One-Pan-Three-Forks-and-Some-Ziploc-Baggies simply. An odd number of forks was poor planning, as there is an even number of us, but you get the idea. We wanted to pack it all up, get it down here, and leave it packed up until we got into our real place so the work would be kept to a minimum. You guys know how I don't like to work. The real place has been in the process of being built, as it's the residence hall that I was hired for, so they've put us up in a student apartment until it was ready. The apartment's been nice [lots of light, a dishwasher, and a front patio kind of nice], but let's be real. I'm ready to settle.

The new building is ready enough for occupancy, so says the great state of Texas. We move our stuff over on Thursday with the help of the maintenance team and a free day I get off of work [thank you, bargaining skills] and unpacking will begin PRONTO. That brand new apartment will be turned into our home in the blink of an eye. Really all it takes is a sweaty sports bra left on a doorknob [me] and some nerdy magazines on the back of the toilet [Ben], but still. Those boxes are getting emptied and thrown out of the windows. The smell of cardboard will no longer invade my nostrils. 

Thanks to the shitty job our moving company did, we have a big claims check coming our way, so I foresee many IKEA and Target trips in our future. I also see many DIY and decorating posts in this blog's future because I need someone to brag to. Thanks for forever being my audience.

August bold intentions

It's August. Somewhere in the flurry of packing-driving down & across the country-visiting family-getting to a new city-starting a new job-celebrating our first year of marriage-writing a thesis-etc, late spring and much of summer has flown by. And while the cliches are...cliche, they're true for a reason. Time goes so quickly as I get older!

I have big plans for this August. This month is going to bring about a lot of change in our already-very-different-lives and I'm excited for it all. I'm going to be bold and intentional about my August and I already started today.

inspired by Elise

1) Write my thesis & write it hard. I'm getting there. Slowly, but surely, I'm turning on my classical piano Pandora station, sitting on my couch/at my desk/on the floor and writing. I hate getting into it, but once I'm in, I love it. [This is sitting on my coffee table for inspiration]. This weekend, I will finish my rough draft, submit it to my advisor, edit it all next week, and submit it for good on August 11. And then I'm DONE. My diploma will be mailed August 31 and I'll have my Master's degree. Holy shit.

2) Cram summer into the rest of summer. As I've mentioned, we haven't had much time for summery things. Once the paper is done, I'm kicking it into high gear. We'll go for late night walks, play some more catch, make s'mores, go swimming, etc. I'm glad that it stays hot here until oh, November, because we've got some catching up to do. I want carefree days and long, lazy nights. August 2013: the month of the Quigley summer.

3) Look up. I'm doing better already with putting my phone away. As I mentioned a while ago, I deleted social media apps off of my phone in an effort to focus on what's happening in front of me. But you guys, it's actually an addiction. Since Ben's been gone [on his base in New York], I've gotten Instagram back because it's pretty, and I check Facebook and Twitter through my web browser on the phone. I still put it down and work, write, read, bike ride, etc., but it keeps me company as I go to sleep and sit around. Once Ben is home though and it's not so lonely around here, that thing is gone. I want to make people [especially my husband] feel loved, and spending all my time looking at my phone DOES NOT DO THAT.

4) Make friends. No one really warned me about how hard/weird it is to make friends as an adult. There are all of these social norms and already established groups and just all around different things about being a grown up looking for friends. However, I'm making baby steps. I like the people at work and they like me back [I think], there are some cool women at kickboxing, and we may have found a church that we like enough to get involved in. Also, I know I said no more social media, but I might be going to a blogging brunch here in Dallas hosted by some friends I met on Twitter. There are prospects on the friend front and I need to put myself out there and make things happen. I want friends. Girl friends, guy friends, couple friends, all of them. Hey, you live in Dallas and you're not lame? Let's be friends.

That's it. I have four goals this month. Let's do this.

in this world...

It's 10:30 on Sunday night and I'm almost ready to head to bed. I had a long drive home today and kickboxing is early tomorrow, so the night is winding down. I wanted to get some words out first.

This weekend I drove down to Spring by myself to visit my brother- and sister-in-law who just had their first baby. Friday afternoon, after a failed attempt to get bangs cut, I got in the car for 4 hours of traffic-laden, dusk and night driving. It wasn't my favorite experience. The night was long, as Bethany & Lee were at the hospital with baby Micah, and I had the whole house to myself. On Saturday though, it was worth it. After getting dressed and stopping for some iced coffee, I walked into the hospital room and saw my sweet family for the first time in too long. The love that I could feel in the room was overwhelming. I wonder if babies know how much they are loved when they're brand new like that; if they can feel everyone's overwhelming adoration of them. I spent the day at the hospital with Bethany, Lee & Micah, as the nurses came in and out, as Micah slept and woke up, and as the new parents subsequently slept and woke up. We got all ready to head home and I took pictures of their sweet family as they left the hospital and walked into their home for the first time as a family of three. It was a heartwarming experience to be there in the first few days of my nephew's life. I'm thankful I could be there to help out Bethany and Lee and to see them as new parents, experiencing everything for the first time. I'm thankful I could see them experiencing their son for the first times and the overwhelming new love they have for him.

Ben has been in New York at his Air Force base for the past week and he'll be there for another two and a half weeks. It's lonely here without him. I have my co-workers, who I thankfully already consider my friends, and I have my kickboxing acquaintances, but the house is quiet in a way that I never want it to be again. From boot camp, deployments, and the other minor days away, I can be alone. I even got good at being alone. But this time, it isn't for me. We've been inseparable during this move and I like him. It's not fun to be apart.

I knew this before, but I know it even more now: relationships are what this world is about. We surround ourselves with love from the ones we love and we're happy people. We thrive on the support of the people who mean something to us. I see it in my new nephew and his parents who love him, I see it in my marriage, and I see it in the friends and family who I miss like crazy back home. People are supposed to be with people and I miss my people. I love my new life down here and everything is actually going really well, but I miss my people. Every single one of them.

Taken last Saturday on our anniversary, at the John Mayer concert. He's my person.
More of my people: new daddy Lee and his baby Micah