Nine on the 9th

1. Rachel went to college in Michigan and considers it her second home. She went to Calvin  College in Grand Rapids, and usually visits 2-3 times a year.  The nature preserve at Calvin is where she would get away from busy college life, and it is also where she proposed to Kristl this past August. At the nature preserve at Calvin College, just after getting engaged

2. Kristl did two years at Boston College before quitting to attend acupuncture school. She loves Boston, but hasn't been back since 2002. Hopefully one day she'll be able to take Rachel there for a visit.

3. Rachel has a minor obsession with Stephen King and has gotten Kristl into his stuff as well. Kristl went from having read no Stephen King to having read 14 of his books in the past couple years (including the entire Dark Tower series). She's currently working on The Shining. (Rachel has read 26 of his books, but she hasn't read The Stand, which Kristl has read.)

4. Rachel used to play the oboe (and it's slightly larger and deeper-voiced cousin, the English horn) in high school, and there is a wonderful home video of her flipping her hair a lot before, during, and after a recital.

5. Kristl went to Space Camp in the 5th grade. She served as the pilot of her space mission and was the only girl in her group not placed in Mission Control. There is a home video compilation featuring her awkwardness in all its glory.

Can you handle the Space Camp awesomeness?

6. Somehow we have a knack at getting free food. At least once or twice a month we'll get a dish comped at a restaurant for no reason or our order will be minorly messed up and they'll fix it by bringing us a bunch of extra food. Once we were at a restaurant in Grand Rapids and they comped over half our tab (including Rachel's beer flight!) for no other reason than we "looked like nice people."

7. Rachel ran cross country in high school, but she was almost always the last person to finish. Once she got so lost at a meet that someone had to come find her because she didn't know where the course was. She still runs for exercise, but rarely competes (or gets lost) anymore.

8. Kristl took the ubiquitous ballet/jazz/tap classes as a kid, but really excelled at tap. One day, she found out that Fred Astaire shared a birthday with her and she told her mom that she was pretty sure she had his spirit and that's why she was such a good tapper. (She's not actually anywhere near as good as Fred, though.)

9. We've lived in our apartment for a year and a half and still have a handful of boxes we haven't unpacked and a bunch of pictures and artwork that we haven't hung on the walls. Despite all of this, our home feels rather warm and inviting. (On a related note: Anybody have any hookups for frames? We've purchased a few art pieces that are odd sizes and we don't have the money to get custom frames for them right now.)

We hope to be back to somewhat regular posts in the next few weeks. Things are in a major state of flux right now, but once everything settles, we should have much more time for blogging. You can keep up with us on Facebook until then!

Nine on the 9th

In reading other peoples' blogs we realized that we really enjoy posts that allow us to get to know the bloggers better. So we've decided to start a (hopefully) regular feature called "Nine on the 9th" where we share nine things about ourselves, both individually and as a couple, on the 9th of the month. Let's get started! 1. Rachel's favorite food is pretty much always tacos. She has gone to great lengths to eat at delicious taco joints, both in the city of Chicago and out-of-state. She even has a "Favorite Tacos" list on her Yelp! profile and we made tacos for our wedding lunch!

2. Kristl is from Hawaii, where there is a big car culture. She used to have a list of all the mods she wanted to do to her car to soup it up. That all stopped when she moved to Chicago in 2004. Now she and Rachel share a 2005 Hyundai with a cracked center console and no spoiler.

3. We met in our local LGBTQ community choir, Windy City Performing Arts, in September 2010, but we didn't notice each other until 6 months later when we both got cute, queer-ish haircuts. We didn't actually go on our first date until June, 2011.

4. Rachel is a constant and avid reader and frequently has at least three books going at once. She also is a frequent library-user and forced her host brother to help her get a library card when she lived in Tokyo for 2.5 months.

5. Kristl loves baking (and is really good at it), but she hates eating cake. She has been known to spend hours baking and frosting a cake for someone and then not even try a bite.

6. We rarely watch movies and almost never watch TV, even though individually we used to watch a lot of movies and Kristl in particular would spend hours watching TV. We usually can't name three (or any) movies that are out at a given time. (We did, however, see The Hunger Games in the theatre in 2012. We waited so long to see it that it was only playing in ONE theatre in the entire Chicagoland area, so we drove over an hour each way to see it. We haven't yet seen Catching Fire, and are likely to wait until 2014 to do so.)

7. When she was little, Rachel loved catching frogs, lizards, and grasshoppers in the swamp by her house in Pensacola, FL. As an adult she tries to avoid the aforementioned animals.

8. Despite having lived in Chicago for nine years, Kristl still gets inordinately excited about road trips, big or small. Having grown up in Hawaii, she is just not used to the fact that you can hop in your car and end up in another state. Her road trip experiences have grown a lot since dating Rachel, as they've driven to Florida, North Carolina and Virginia in the past year and a half, not to mention numerous weekend trips to other states in the Midwest.

9. Kristl knew she wanted to have a lifelong commitment to Rachel pretty early on in their relationship, but Rachel took her time. One thing she was adamant about was not having  a long engagement, saying she didn't understand the point. At the beginning of this year, Rachel was pretty sure she wanted to marry Kristl, but thought about it in terms of "five years down the road." Then in late August, she proposed to Kristl, and in early November they got married in Iowa. Guess she got her wish of having a short engagement! (And Kristl got a road trip as part of her wedding! W00!)

Goofing off on our wedding day

Hope you enjoyed this first installment of "Nine on the 9th"! Let us know if you have any questions you'd like us to answer in the future.