Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Our Engagement Story

As a newly engaged couple, newlywed and even plain ole married lady I am often asked the story of my engagement. Did I know it was coming? Did I pick the ring? How did he actually propose?

So here it is, our engagement story:

After I graduated from Michigan, Brian and I decided to make the joint move to Chicago. Our move coincided with our four year anniversary, so as my gift to Brian I made ten personalized checks to be cashed in Chicago. They were designed to help us learn the city; cocktails on the roof of Hancock Tower, an afternoon in the Lincoln Park Zoo, a romantic sunset stroll down Lake Michigan, etc. Well, as it often happens with homemade coupon-style gifts, a year passed and not all checks had been redeemed. As our five year anniversary neared, I reminded Brian that his checks were about to expire and that any checks not redeemed would be null and void. Coincidentally, two nights before our five year anniversary (nothin' like waiting 'til the last minute!) we were both free to take that romantic (life-changing) sunset stroll. After numerous, irrationally frantic phone calls from Brian obsessively questioning the exact time of sunset, we moseyed on down to the bike path along Lake Michigan. There we sat, taking in the impressive Chicago skyline and watching the sun set over the lake. At this point, Brian says to me,

"So I brought the checks with me if you want to go through them just to double check they've all been cashed...?"

"Nah, that's okay. I know we've done 'em all at this point."

"No, come on, let's go through them together. It'll be fun!"

"Licoln Park Zoo, Aquarium, Hancock Tower, Miracle Mile, 'Will you marry me?'..... WHAT?!"

And as fast as I could look up from reading this foreign hand made check, Brian was down on one knee, promising to love me forever and asking for my hand in marriage.

[Before meeting me for our sunset rendezvous, Brian had snuck off to Kinko's and made a copy of one of the checks, replacing the amount line with the words, WILL YOU MARRY ME?]

"Did you ask my Dad? Oh my god, this ring! Is it insured? Woah, that means we will have children together... I mean, YES! YES! My answer's YES!"

I remember Brian saying something about never wanting to be apart and speaking our own language. To be completely honest the rest of the night is a vivid blur. I remember the steps we took, the people we called, certain specifics like that, but a lot of the exact details are fuzzy. I remember my cheeks hurting the next day (from smiling) and thinking that was a good sign.

Brian might have a different recollection of the night, but that's how I remember it. I remember it being one of the best nights of my life and thinking - but how can it get any better than this?

"Here's looking at you, kid."

I love pictures. I especially love pictures of Brian and me - no matter what we're doing - getting engaged, laughing, kissing, smiling at the camera, looking away; doesn't matter.

Here are some of my all time favorites:

September 26, 2007: Chicago
The night we got engaged!

October 21, 2008: Los Angeles
Two months into our marriage and still goin' strong! :)

July 11, 2009: Dearborn
Rishi & Alison's Wedding

July 25, 2009: Napa
Randy & Lizzy's Wedding

"Families are like fudge - mostly sweet with a few nuts."*

I find it only appropriate to introduce the cast of characters in the above picture as I'm sure they will be mentioned on more than one occasion. These are our brothers and sisters. The loves of our life. Here is some information about our beloved siblings:

Kimberly's Brother (top left): A lover of all things music and an inspiring social media master, Michael lives in Houston and is currently bringing the family business (Robinson Iron & Metal, a scrap yard) into the 21st century. "Oy" and goodluck! :)
Brian's Brother (top center): A hot shot lawyer in San Francisco, he is a foodie at heart and the proud papa of Dallas Luskey, a pampered Cavalier King Charles Spaniel.
Brian (top right): Half of The Santa Monica Luskeys.
Brian's Brother's Wife (bottom left): A PR guru turned salad dressing blog aficionado, is expecting our first niece/nephew in January. Thank you for turning us into Aunt Kim and Uncle Brian!
Kimberly's Sister (bottom, second from left): My precious pride and joy baby sister is a young adult with special needs living in Connecticut in a community full of peers who love and adore her! Jamie's moto: "Love my life; I am queen!"
Kimberly (bottom, second from right): The other half of The Santa Monica Luskeys.
Brian's sister (bottom right): A rising star writer who just accepted a coveted spot in the prestigious creative writing graduate program at Oregon State. Go Beavers!

So there you have it! The most important people in our life (along with our amazingly supportive parents and FOUR vivacious Grandmothers).

We are lucky!

*Brian suggested the title of this blog post be, "Families are like a**holes, everyone's got one." I vetoed this idea.

“Doors open when you’re on the right path”

I heard someone say this the other day and I can’t get it out of my head. I’m a big believer in beshert (fate) and astrological charts. I believe in things like Saturn Return and think mine will happen way before my 30th birthday. And I can’t help but wonder that although I think I’m going down this path, it’s actually leading toward an end result I don’t even yet realize. To avoid getting too mystical on ya, I guess I can simply break it down. I’ve been on a tunnel-vision, rocket course toward one goal (acting) for over ten years and now that I am in the best position to succeed, I’m not sure if that is what I really want. So much of what actors love (aside from the actual work of connecting with other actors and exploring the human emotional experience, etc.) is the competition. The fighting for yourself and - in your wildest dreams - winning! But when actors realize that much of the actual business of acting is fighting for the chance to fight... it's exhausting. Someone once asked me, "Is it hard to hear 'no' all the time?" I laughed and said, "I WISH I was hearing 'no' all of the time - I'm not hearing ANYTHING at the moment!" So here I am, 26 years old, at the brink of the brink success and I'm hesitating. I can neither ignore nor deny what my heart tells me, I can only decide what to do with it. So come on, doors, open! I don't care where you'll lead me, just show me a way.

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Operation De-Clutter

I'm not sure if it's the sudden heatwave (aka summer) or the fact that we are coming up on our one year anniversary in our Santa Monica palace or the fact I daily dream of having a three bedroom house with a yard and a fence and a rescue puppy named Markley... BUT I have been feeling a sudden and urgent need to NEST!

I love our apartment, don't get me wrong, it is PEFECT for us. For now. But I can't help but think - how can I make it better? How can I make it feel bigger or cooler and.... here's the kicker... less cluttered. Hence: Operation De-Clutter. Now, for those of you who know me (which, is probably everyone reading this) you know that I love me some tchotchkes. I love to cluster collections around my apartment and make little groupings of related knickknacks. That being said, I also love to see the floor and the counter and the top of a book shelf which is a conflicting interest for the tchotchke lover. So here is my challenge to myself. Over the next few months of summer, I am going to attempt to de-clutter our apartment; one nook at a time. The main reason I want to do this is, despite being a desperate creature of habit, I love change. I love to see before and after pictures. This is probably why I love to bake: take these lonely ingredients, make an awesome cake! So be on the lookout for before and after pictures. This is gunna be fun!

He Said, She Said

Our goal with this blog is to switch off so that you - our beloved reader (and most likely a Luskey) - can get a sense from both of us how life is in sunny California. If you're ever wondering who wrote which post, here is a guide to help you determine:

Kimberly Topics:
baking, recipes, food, design ideas, organization, nesting, planning, future goals, dreams, and anything covered by US Weekly.

Brian Topics:
coupons, slick deals, restaurants, wine, saving money, sports, bicycles, oh yeah, and saving money.


Friday, June 18, 2010

The Santa Monica Luskeys

Welcome to the blog of The Santa Monica Luskeys! (Not to be confused with the Dallas Luskeys, or the Fort Worth Luskeys, or the Lubbock Luskeys, or the Houston Luskeys, or the Savannah Luskeys, or the Saratoga Luskeys, or the San Francisco Luskeys, or the Sherman Oaks Luskeys, also known as The Millers.) Not that ALL of these Luskeys aren't incredible people - hell, they're our family! - but we have set out to make a name for ourselves and have chosen Santa Monica to do it!

We aren't necessarily committed to staying in Santa Monica, but we are committed to staying Luskeys! :) This blog will chronicle our life; full of coupons, "slick deals," exploring every hidden gem Santa Monica has to uncover, pursuing a dream and living the life. We are two Jewish Texans who fell in love in Ann Arbor, followed each other to New York, Chicago, West Hollywood, and now paradise... Santa Monica, California!

This is not necessarily where we thought we'd be at 26 and 29 years old (respectively), but we are living the best life we can... together! We don't promise to always have a rosy report, but we will always share our hearts with you and hope in return you continue to love and support us. Hop on and enjoy the ride!