Tuesday, December 16, 2008


Your brain on video games.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Addition to the Blogroll!

My lovely friend Kat has started a blog!

Visit her here: http://tumultuouslove.blogspot.com/

Happy Holidays!

 From the cast of Twilight

Send your own ElfYourself eCards

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Highlights of Thanksgiving

We had an AMAZING time in Virginia, and though it was quite a whirlwind, I managed to snag a photo or two, and stole some from others...

Austin: turkey carver extraordinaire: 

The pup, exploring some fabulous smells:

and the after-effects of dinner-a nap on the floor:
Hope everyone else had a fabulous Thanksgiving! 

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Headed to the Big V-A!

We are so excited to get some time in Virginia this week!!

Unfortunately we can't leave until Wednesday morning {gotta save up that leave for wedding fun!} but we have some jam packed days of activities ahead of us!

On the to-do list:

  • Thanksgiving dinner. yum.
  • Midnight outlet shopping
  • Engagement Party {!!}
  • Diana's Baby Shower, or should I say little Miss Emma's Shower :)
  • OSL get together at Dan and Lisa's
  • Hittin up AJ GATOR'S with all my lovely old friends {for those of you not familiar with Great Brisdge, Virginia, AJ Gator's is a total townie bar...where we are destined to run into a million people that we haven't thought about -and probably forgot existed- since high school.}
I am getting so excited!!!

Now if I could only get this school work done and out of the way...grrr... 

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Let's Say Thanks

In this week of Thanksgiving, I thought I would let you know about a cool program that Xerox is doing right now...Let's Say Thanks.

 {this postcard was drawn by a 9 year old 
named Powell from Statesboro, Georgia}

All that you have to do is go to the site and pick a hand drawn design for your thank you card. You then enter your name and select a message and Xerox prints it and has partnered with Give2TheTroops to send them in large care packages to go overseas. 

This literally takes 10 seconds to do. As always, no matter your stance on the war, you can imagine how hard it is for these men and women to be away from their family and friends at any time, but especially during the holidays. So say thanks!

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Wedding Website

We have gone ahead and added a link to our wedding website under the "Wedding Planning" Gadget on the right! Enjoy :)

Monday, November 17, 2008

About the Navy...

I know, I know, this blog is supposed to be about what is going on with us since Austin joined the Navy...and I used to be good at conveying that.

Unfortunately for you all, there used to be actual progress of Austin to keep you updated...and now? His schedule looks like this on a typical day:

7:30am: Muster at the base {the lieutenant makes sure they are all still there and alive}
8:00am: Return home
1:00pm: Call in to the base, to make sure he is still alive and they don't need him to do anything

and t-t-th-th-th-that's all folks.

Seriously. That is his routine until January when his classes start. Tough life, huh?

My routine? Blogging to procrastinate from doing research proposals and studying for comprehensive exams :)

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Small Update, Big Addition

We got a new {to us} TV!

Lindsey and Darren have been clearing out some of the things stored at Darren's parents' house, one item of which was a 32" television that they no longer need because of their own recent acquisition of a flat screen.

So, they decided to gift it to us! Yay! {Before we had a 27" that I had had since freshman year of college in the living room, and that extra 5" makes a big difference to Austin and his football viewing}

Thanks guys!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Too much cute...

Monday, November 10, 2008

CDC for Life

I know he didn't want this, BUUUTTTTT, he is my very best friend so I think he will forgive me if I do it anyway...

To my high school yearbook buddy,

Partner in {many} hijinks,

Purveyor of inside jokes,

Lover of Buster,

Sustainer of the LOLs

and all around bestest friend a girl could have 

 {aren't you glad we all finally got the date right ;)}

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Can I be a HUGE Geek?

for just a sec.

I just saw a new {to me} TV spot for TWILIGHT!!!

See below.


Sunday, November 2, 2008

Make it a double.

Since Lisa has put it up on her facebook status, I am guessing it's fair play for blogging...

Dan and Lisa are going to be the proud parents of TWINS!!!!

Congrats guys!!! We are so happy for you...may the OSL craziness continue!

UPDATE: Check out the sonogram of the ACTUAL Mazzio babies here

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Happy Halloween! Part Deux.

From Bings:
{he really enjoyed his shirt - can't you tell?}

Time to Fall Back!

Don't forget to turn back you clocks and enjoy that extra hour!

{I will use mine for sleeping thankyouverymuch.}

Friday, October 31, 2008

Happy Halloween!!

Enjoy your trick or treating!

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Wedding Website Up!

Hello Friends :)

Just wanted to update you really quickly to say, the beginnings of our wedding website is up and running!

Click here to view

Check back for updates as more information becomes available!

Cola has moved :)

Cola has decided to be a triple blogger!

I have been meaning to link her new blog Aprons Required for a while...

but then she went and started another blog! (so that she could save the original one for just wedding related info...)

Check her out at Inside Out!

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

A Weekend Recap!

As I am in the full swing of a graduate program, sometimes I have busy days that do not involve blogging. So, I apologize for this being not as timely as I had anticipated!

But, this weekend I made sure I had all of my homework done and put away so I could focus on the lovely Rolland family :)

They got here Friday evening, after a little hiccup in the directions (sorry guys!). The only thing that we really had time for was to watch the boys play Mario Kart on the Wii...soooo entertaining, lol.

We got up Saturday morning, ready for a full day! I made some scrambled eggs to tide us over and then got ready for the day and headed to lunch at the Last Resort! We enjoyed lunch and then moved on to the main feature: Red Velvet Cake.

We each had a slice and did NOT share with the boys :)
Mama Rolland with her cake!
After lunch we headed to Hobby Lobby, a favorite stop for every mom-to-be and bride-to-be, I am sure. Even the boys came :)
After that we headed into Atlanta to go to Lenox Mall and do some shopping! Diana got the cutest top for her baby shower...no pictures so that it is a surprise.

Then we grabbed a quick dinner at Outback and headed to the Lasershow Spectacular. It was very...very...laser-y. {Definitely something to take the kids to, but we had a good time anyway.}
We headed home, played some more Wii and hit the hay.
Sunday morning we had a glorious breakfast/brunch at Big City Bread and just sat and talked for a couple hours before they had to head home...
A quick one, but a GREAT weekend!

Sunday, October 26, 2008

A Party in the Fall

Friday afternoon I had the most fun in attendance at a Pumpkin Carving Party hosted by Miss Jessica Morgan (one of my cohortmates).

This lady is full of Southern grace and hospitality and is a fantastic cook! I promised to make some Ghost Cupcakes which was an idea that I had gathered bits and pieces from in different places.

When I described them to my mom she made me promise to take a picture regardless of how they turned out (so she could laugh if I failed miserably, I presume) but they actually came out pretty cute! Take a look:

So what are they? Chocolate Cupcakes (recipe from here) with homemade Cream Cheese Frosting (recipe from my big, red Betty Crocker Cookbook) and Meringue Puffs (recipe from here). I used some of the frosting and some food coloring to make the purple eyes...
They were pretty labor intensive, but combined with Jessica's Chicken Tortilla Soup and Turkey Chili and Cornbread, check out this table:

After gorging on some awesome food we all headed outside to carve up some pumpkins! I haven't carved a pumpkin since maybe before high school and had a blast. Check out our sweet pumpkins:

Mine is the small one, second from the top...it actually wasn't that small...Margaret's pumpkin was just HUGE...here, look at it close up:

A scary haunted house! It has a candle in it and is sitting outside our door...bring on the fall!

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Happy Anniversary Babe

Wow. 8 years. And our last anniversary as an unmarried - yet fabulously committed - couple! So weird!

I figured that I would share the story of how we met, that will be posted on our wedding website to commemorate the occasion, as well as some of our favorite nostalgic photos. Enjoy!

How We Met:

as recounted by the bride:

One day, a few years ago, a striking young woman was asked to join her high school's musical production of Guys and Dolls stage crew team. Though she knew nothing about constructing or moving sets, or for that matter anything about musicals, she agreed.
Upon arrival at her first after school meeting, she realized that she knew even less than she thought that she did about stage crew. She was quickly sent to dry brush more than a thousand tiny window panes for the cityscape backdrop and was heartily ignored by the rest of the crew, save one young man.

That young man thought to himself "Wow, that young lady is so amazing. She dry brushes like nobody's business. I must get to know her better."

And so he did. And so they fell in love.

as recounted by the groom:

I remember it vividly - a beautiful girl in the corner of the stage working tirelessly on a backdrop for the school musical. She seemed to always be dry brushing (a technique used to add depth).

I am not good at this effect, however I searched for any reason to be near her.

After, I'm sure, a few awkward attempts, I finally got my chance. During a nightly performance, the girl who will be my wife and I pushed a flat out onto the stage. As we were rushing back to the wings, the lights went up early and she was about to step out on center stage.

I reached out and grabbed her hand.

We spent the next forty five minutes trapped behind the flat in whispered conversation. Under those lights I found my love.

Tech Crew...where it all started.
A weekend in the mountains (Fall 2001)
 Prom (Spring 2002)
At prom
 Watching the sunrise on the beach, after prom
Graduation (Spring 2002)
Graduation night. He was just sleeping. I swear ;)
Top of the Empire State Building. Note the Weezer patch on Austin's jeans. (Fall 2002) 
Baby, I love you and I cannot wait to be Mrs. Courtney Rae Brawford Gage ;)

The Rollands are rolling in...

That title only works when written down because they actually pronounce their last name "Rahlland" but whatevs.

I am SO excited to see the whole family this weekend! Allen, Diana, Kalea and little baby Emma Grace (in utero and all, but still)

We have quite a weekend planned! Saturday will consist of

  • lunch at Last Resort for some yummy food - and possibly the best red velvet cake in the south - followed closely by Publix, no joke.
  • fun walking around downtown Athens and heading to Atlanta for dinner
  • an undisclosed dinner location in Atlanta - read: whatever we feel like.
  • and then to Stone Mountain for the last showing of the 25th Anniversary edition of LASER SHOW SPECTACULAR
It should be so much fun!!! So excited!

I think Sunday we will probably just hang out a little bit, hit up Big City Bread for breakfast, and do some chillaxin.

I am so excited for this weekend, especially because I am kicking it off tomorrow with a Pumpkin Carving Party! Bring on the fall :)

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Lemons and Melons and Pears, Oh My!

YAY for Wicked!

As was previously told to me, the musical is very different than the book...a much happier ending, I must say.

We ladies had SO much fun, and we have been serenading our cohort with songs like "Popular" since Sunday trying to convince them they are "hanging with the right cohort" (LOL)

The show was at the fabulous Fox Theater in downtown Atlanta. The inside of the theater is very Moroccan and the ceiling is lit so that it looks like you are in a courtyard at night, below the open sky. There are even clouds rolling across the sky throughout the productions!

In any case we had awesome seats and thoroughly enjoyed our evening...we snapped the picture below as we ran out of the theater at the end, and had to fight against crowds to stop and get it, so please excuse the, uh, scandalous way my strap has fallen off of my shoulder...I blame it on everyone else being so much shorter than me (no offense girlies :) )

I swear I had a shawl with me, it is just hidden behind my other ladies! Or maybe I was just feeling wicked ;)

Too much? Yup, I know, I couldn't resist.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Austin's on the Prom Committee


Not really, but he was assigned to be on the planning and set up committee for his first Navy Ball, which will be taking place this Friday. Considering that he is required to go to the ball, which he would rather not attend, the addition of being on the planning committee has him thrilled, as you can imagine.

Austin will be going sans moi, because it is $45/ person to go, and he is required to attend another ball in the spring with his own class, which will be more fun, so we will both go to that one. (The only reason he has to go to this one is basically because he checked in early here in Athens.)

Anywho, he is pouting about it, and I think it is hysterical. Thought I would share.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Go Monarchs!

This may be old for some of us, but some fellow ODU lovers out there haven't seen it, and I think it is cool. this is a virtual tour of what Foreman Field (originally built in 1936) will look like when it is all renovated and fabulous.

ODU Football Fall of 2009, Get Excited!

Addition to the Blogroll!

Check out yet another of my sorority sisters and her family at:

The Everett Family

Happy Reading!

Lazy Saturday

We have had so much going on lately that I made the decision to not go to the Georgia game today. I know, I know, sacrilege.

BUT, we are watching it on TV as I check things off of my to-do list...and I am wearing Georgia gear, so I feel a little better about it.

Here is a pic I just snapped of my favorite boys relaxing on the couch (who have no to-do lists to worry about):

It's a good thing that I am getting some things done today, because tomorrow I am headed to Atlanta with the girls to see WICKED! Reviews to follow ;)

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Happy Birthday Critter!

or Sherlby Marle
or Dogtip
or Shel

or my dear friend and old roommate,
co-founder of burnett's citrus vodka and mountain dew cocktail hours,
survivor of 42nd St., 
fellow Greek Woman of the year ;) ,
co-saver of bridal bouquets and seating charts,
and the perfecter of the one-arm-self-portrait-with-other-people's-cameras


I hope that you have the happiest of days on your lovely cruise ship :)

p.s. so does Austin.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Scarily True Glimpse into the Future

Right down to the Navy T-shirt. 

Monday, October 6, 2008

Addition to the Blogroll!

This is the adorable blog of one of my sorority sisters Sam! Enjoy!


and...Corey is back to blogger!


Georgia on My Mind

Last weekend was a tough one to be around Athens, but not tough enough to have Georgia fans lose their class.

This observation was a very true one, and that comes from someone who was in the stands until the teams left the field.

Life Updates!

I haven't really updated so much on what has been happening in our lives as I had been this summer and I guess people are noticing. Ack! Sorry! I will be better, I promise.

The last few weeks have seen some busy times for us here in Athens. I am busy as ever with class and with work, and now wedding planning thrown in the mix. We are waist deep in midterms in my program, so my life has pretty much consisted of trying to study through a haze of medications...I have a lingering sickness that will not get out of my life.

In addition, there have been some developments in the Greek Life Office (where I work) so now in addition to advising the Multicultural Greek Council, I also advise Order of Omega, our honor society. I was VP of Membership for our chapter at ODU, so I am pretty excited about helping them out. I am getting pretty sick of homework, especially after the summer tease of being a full time professional again, so I cannot wait for graduation!

Austin now has a "job" as a stash officer in Athens. He is "stashed" at the Supply School, which means he goes in to work every morning and checks in to see if they have anything for him to do - until he starts class in January. Right now he has secured a "job" at the Supply School Museum. He scans old newsletters and things into a computer to create digital files for them, and then calls it a day around noon. Tough life.

He has had a lot of fun recently with two of his OCS buddies, Connor and Hayes, who have moved to Athens. We have been all over the place showing them this cool little town.

The Supply School is really beautiful, so I will make sure that we get down there and get some photos. Once upon a time it was the Female Normal School (or Teacher's College) counterpart to the all male UGA. In 2011 it will again be acquired by UGA, but this time to be the medical school campus.

Well, I hope that catches everyone up! Look for more current, and smaller, updates in the future :)

Sunday, October 5, 2008

A Day Late and a Dollar Short

but, we didn't have internet yesterday (long story) so...


Welcome to 24. It's not that bad.
We love you so much!
All of our love,
Austin, Courtney and Bings.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Dear Starbucks,

Thank you for nonfat Pumpkin Spice Lattes.

They make my life so much better with every little autumnal sip.

What shall I do when they go away? Can you not make them a permanent addition to the menu?



Project Runway: like a trainwreck

You can't stop watching.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Home Improvements

This weekend we undertook a major project: re organizing the guest room closet.

Remember that Friends episode where Chandler opens that closet and Monica has things shoved in everywhere and stacked to the ceiling?...that's kind of what it looked like.

Really we had to make room for more stuff because of our second home improvement project. (the fact that Austin had no closet space anywhere in our apartment may have factored in as well...whoops.)

So, we instituted way more drawers:

This is all of my craft stuff, WOO, I finally have a ribbon drawer! (This is a life long dream, yeah Martha)
But, what were we making space for, you may be asking?

A Washer and Dryer!!! Wooooo! No more laundromats for this crew. Overall, a very productive last couple of days.  :)

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Classes for Bings

For those of you who have not met our beagle Bingley, this is typically what you will see when you walk into our apartment...or he will be trying to lick your feet, and get acquainted with you - his new best friend.
Overall, he is pretty well behaved...I taught him sit, lay down, stay, rollover, and the ever popular "bang bang" trick (where he plays dead) when he was still a little puppy. Lately, we have been thinking about some ongoing cognitive development...we think it would be good for him...Plus he will get to play with some other pups...I know, I know, I have been studying education for too long, no worries, we are still aware that he is a dog.

So, we are enrolling him in Doggy School, aka Beginners Obedience, at "Pawtropolis" here in Athens. Tonight is our first session for seven weeks. Wow. And get this: tonight is a "Parent's Orientation." He is not even coming with us! We will see how this goes! Look forward to reports on our progress in the future :)

Monday, September 15, 2008

Advice for the Day...

Keep it Simple.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

An attempt at equality...

between the wedding blog and this one...see me balance? lol.


We were pretty excited, and for those who don't believe how big football is here in Georgia, check out this socialization:

Thursday, September 11, 2008

So...a wedding!

The most avid of readers will notice to that there is a new section on the sidebar: "The Wedding Planning"

Eventually this will include more links, like to our wedding web page...when we get to it...but for now it includes my new, wedding planning only blog (!)

I know. I may be crazy. And a tad bit excited.

BUT, we wanted to preserve this blog for the long haul, and I don't want to muddy it up with my wedding planning craziness...just updates and such.

Therefore, if you are interested in following the wedding planning more so than wedding updates...check out the new one: See the Bride Blog.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Additions to the Blog Roll...

Quick update!

Dan Maz,
Holdin it down in Hampton Roads...

Dana Duncan Photography, my sorority sister who has an awesome photography business!

The Holdens, another sorority sister's family adventures

Check 'em out!

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Too Much Cute.

Y'all will NOT believe this:

So my mom called me yesterday afternoon to let me know that Austin and I got engaged exactly 30 years and 1 day after my parents!

September 4, 1978 and September 5, 2008. Isn't that insanity???

They were also high school sweethearts and got engaged, unlike us, the September of their senior year of high school and then were married January 5, 1980 (a year and a couple of months later)...3 kids and 28 years later, here we are!

So...I don't have ANY pictures of my parents together by themselves --and as my mother is not the most technologically savvy and I inherited my procrastination from dad -- I figured a family photo was better than holding off until they can send me one.

Comment Issue Resolved!

I know that a couple of you have alerted me to the inability to comment on the blog...and I am pretty sure I have it fixed, after some advice from others more blog savvy than I, so feel free to comment away!!

I have no idea why the other setting wasn't working, but I set it up in Beta Blogger so that may have been why...in any case, it works now...Leave some love :)

Big Changes in Life

In addition to Austin's most recent purchase (<3) we also made another 'life decision'...

As many of you know, in February of last year we mourned the loss of Elizabeth (named by Corey) - Austin's 2004 White Chevy Cavalier with no automatic locks, windows, or cruise control...

ok so some of us ::coughcoughAustincough:: may have mourned the loss a bit more than others ::coughmecough::

In any case, with him heading off to OCS so soon after that we decided to wait on another car purchase, but was a major to do upon graduation.

So without further ado I introduce you to the newest member of the Brawford/Gage fleet (unnamed as of yet):

It is a 2004 Limited Edition Jeep Grand Cherokee that we purchased with only 36,000 miles on it...woo...we love it.

I know, I know, an SUV with gas prices like this? yes. The space is FABULOUS.

Also, seeing as I primarily drive it, not the wanna be racecar driver Ensign Gage, the gas mileage is not so bad ;)

Any name ideas?

P.S. My '99 Civic, Maria (named by Shelby) is still going strong! Woo!

Monday, September 8, 2008

Love, Love, Loveity Love Love Love

Wow everyone! Thank you so much for all the love and congratulations via your blogs, phone calls, emails and everything else!!! We are so blessed to have you all in our life and are feeling very loved.

We wanted to take a second to congratulate another recently engaged couple - Dustin and Adele!!!

I feel like singing "Love is in the Air" a little bit...

I also wanted to point out that the "Cross Country Adventure" recap series is still continuing, but since I started writing them and saved them all as drafts before I had pictures to add, they keep their original posting date - which means they will appear below the engagement story and new updates like this one :)

Thanks for reading and being all around fabulous friends!

Sunday, September 7, 2008

We're Engaged!

I am sure that most of you have heard the news, but in case you haven't...We're getting married!!!

Austin proposed to me on Friday, September 5. While we have known for a while that we were "it" for each other, this new official declaring of spending the rest of our lives together is...so different, yet so the same...we just keep giggling at each other when we think about it or I catch sight of my ring.

It has been a very happy couple of days here in Athens, Georgia :)

So here is the story:
Friday night was supposed to be date night for us. We have both been kinda busy doing our own things since we have been home, so we decided that Friday night would be a good night. I offhandedly suggested it when he picked me up from work earlier this week...

Courtney: "Hey, how about if we go out to dinner on Friday...it could be like a date, haha"

Austin: "Ok, that sounds nice...do you want to go to Harry Bissett's? I know you have wanted to go back there for a while..."

Courtney: "Ooooh, that would be fun" (mentally congratulates herself on maneuvering into this awesome night and dinner to follow and thanks the Lord that the Navy pays more than Target)

So, all the while little did I know that he had it all planned out, had been ring shopping since we got home, and in the last two weeks had been designing my ring with a local jeweler!

We had such a great day hanging out on Friday! We started with friends at the pool in our complex, came back and played the Wii, drank some wine, and just had a cool hang out day...

Again, little did I know when he "ran in" to work in his whites, he had really picked up the ring!

Later that night I was getting ready for our reservations, which were for 6:30...around about 6:10, he starts rushing me...

Austin: "Come on Court! We are going to be late, what are you doing in there?"

Courtney: "I am coming! I am coming!" (as she runs out the bedroom door, gracefully hopping on one heeled foot as she tugs on the other shoe, scrambling for her purse and phone and applying lipgloss)

Austin: "You got everything?"

Courtney: "Yup I am good! Come on!" (She sprints for the door)

Austin (from inside the bedroom): "Hey Court, wait! You forgot something!"

Courtney (whirling around a tad bit indignantly, thinking "No I didn't!", sprints back toward the bedroom): "What did I forget?"

Austin: "This." (proceeds to get down on one knee and propose)

After crying buckets of tears and a lot of "Are you for real right now?!?"s, I of course accepted, and that was that, we were engaged! AHHHH! I don't remember much of what he actually said because my mind was reeling - which is exactly what he wanted. He says that he wanted to surprise me, and have "that look in my eye of complete shock" which he accomplished :)

We went to dinner after that and only called one person before dinner - my mom. He said that he had called my dad earlier in the week and asked for permission, and made my dad promise not to tell her so that I could call and tell her the news!

So the call was made, more tears followed and we finally went into dinner, where we proceeded to grin like idiots at each other and giggle all the more. It was fabulous. No one knew, except us, it was our moment.

After dinner of course, we called and texted everyone we loved and adored to share the happy news...our friend Kat, who had spent all day with us at the pool, happened to be driving across town when she heard and came by to share in our joy, and some champagne and was nice enough to snap these photos:

Cheese...goodness...why, oh why can't I be a pretty crier???
A little more composed :)
The first picture of my ring!
So there it is, there's the story of how almost 8 years of dating my best friend has come to the point of calling each other 'our betrothed' and other ridiculously gag inducing names that we have come up with in the last 48 hours :)

We are so excited to start planning a wedding celebration that will truly be a celebration of love and friendship, and feel so blessed that so many have shared in our happiness already!

For the inquiring minds (i.e. my girlfriends), my ring is a one of a kind design that Austin helped with, is so unique and absolutely perfect for me. It is so elegant and delicate (not that I consider myself to be either of those traits, lol). It has a round stone in the middle and two pear shaped stones on either side...

I am in love with it and I can't imagine wearing anything else for the rest of my life.

Without further ado, here is a pic I quickly snagged that doesn't even begin to do its real-life sparkle justice.

Current Mood in the Brawford/Gage household: ecstatic.

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