update your life!

allllllrrrrrighty then.
there has been a lot going on in our lives as usual. i think i've already forgot some things i told myself i needed to blog about.

(note: i like having headings within my blogs because it might be nice if our readers want to know just one thing about something they can just skim until they find the appropriate heading. maybe i'll eventually take time to update more then once-ish a week and then i won't need these uber-long blogs with headings and stuff)

school/future plans
we have some good news and bad news here. i'll give the bad news first.
  • in short, bryan and i didn't have enough time to get things for Iowa State figured out. he met with a counselor this week and many of the deadlines are tomorrow (FAFSA, UV Applications, etc.) we just didn't have the time to get it all done.
  • we're officially going to live in our awesome one-bedroom apartment. (but lg, that doesn't sound like bad news, you yourself called it awesome) true, its going to be REALLY nice to have a washer/dryer and a deck and all of the "extras" that haverkamp offers. but it's just soooo expensive. i wish we would have thought everything through more, but it's ok. it won't break the bank, i just feel like we'll be "losing" money.
the good news is:
  • i'll get to do laundry! hooray. i'm very excited about this actually, right now we go to my parents to do laundry and i end up never washing our clothes because its so inconvenient. my point is, the alsbury's will be a lot less smelly.
  • bryan went to iowa state for about 3 weeks before he dropped because it s was expensive, hard, and he didn't even know what he was going to study. but because of this, he simply has to "re-enroll" instead of start from scratch so thats awesome.
  • bryan probably won't go to iowa state fulltime in the spring semester, which will give him a chance to take a few more cheaper classes at dmacc and us some time to bulk up our savings, pay off all of our debt, etc.
  • we may end up saving money in the end. the deadline to apply for financial aid is tomorrow and we didn't have time to fill it out. but i don't really think bryan would get financial aid because his parents financial info still affects him. but next year, when we apply for financial aid it'll just be our income that applies, and by american standards, we're poor. sweet. so, even if we got all of the forms in on time and crap, we would probably end up with a loan for fall semester because bryan would be enrolled at isu with no financial aid.
on another note, God has really been changing my heart about babies and not wanting bryan to be in school forever. i, more then ever, feel so at peace with him working hard in school for as long as he needs to get a degree that he can/will like using to provide for our family. also, i'm getting really hard core about not going into debt for school (this new attitude is causing me to say, "even if it takes longer" lets do this the wise way). we technically still consider it an option, but i think we might not even have to take out a loan. we're going to try at least.

for our engagement class we are assigned to read three books. two of which i've finished. they were awesome. seriously. let me touch on a few reasons why.
john piper is simply an excellent author. this book is basically a few of his extremely well-written explanations of the Bible and quotes from Dietrich Bonhoeffer. it's a great read, i learned so much and i didn't even read it all (they selected certain chapters for us to read). read it. love it.

oh yeah! they other great thing about this book is that its free! well, kind-of, if you're interested, there is a free pdf online, just click here.

and i'm so glad we were assigned to read this book before marriage:

oh no! it has the word sex in it!
lets face it, married people have sex. and it's glorifying to God. (WHAT?!?!)
seriously, i've heard the above statement before and i just couldn't wrap my mind around it. this book was helpful for my understanding that it no less glorifying to God then praying! weird, huh? even though i knew God had created sex, in my head i couldn't see it as anything more than a selfish human desire. this is also just a great book for husbands about having a great relationship with their wives. and there is come great insight for women written by the authors wife. it's a great read!

on another note, i finished all my invitations! that's pretty much it though. not a whole lot of wedding updates here.

spiritual growth
our church is participating in lent together for the first time! i'm excited! the biggest blessing for me so far has been reading through the psalms. i believe its jeff dodge who is updating a blog with the psalm of day and "starter prayer" its been great.

galatians has been a joy to go through. i've learned more in my short study then i have in a long while. i was so thirsty and the Word has filled me up. paige and i are starting to memorize it as well. i'm so excited about that.

i've been growing a ton, in ways that would take too long to explain but it has brought me great joy to have two women in particular invest in my life. shout outs to mary and paige! you refresh me!

oh and my high school small group? awesome! i have not been able to honestly say that in a long time. it's been a frustrating year for me and my group of girls but i finally feel like we're moving. praise God! i've been so encouraged by the last two weeks. we gained a new student and that has been awesome, and stretching for some of my "don't-you-dare-try-to-break-me-out-of-my-comfort-zone" girls. last week i had a break through. i was explaining Galatians four and had a "Holy Spirit Moment" where God allowed me to say exactly what needed to be said. i saw the faces of almost all of my girls resoundingly say, "oh! i get it!" anna said, "i can actually see why we're going through this book now!" (we've been going through it since the beginning of the school year!)


no time

i haven't had much time this week, but i thought i'd leave you with this inspiration for the day:


take time tuesday.

everyone is doing these little aliteration titles, i wanted to fit it.

tuesdays are one of my most free nights. tonight is a really free night. i'm really bad at making alone time for myself and i've been packing so many things into mondays and tuesdays lately. work has been incredibly busy and i just haven't had anytime to myself after work. i've become super tired. but this tuesday is going to be amazing because i'm hanging out with a high schooler after work and then i have nothing!
i'm really excited. so i'm taking a little time to update my friends on the happenings of the alsbury's.

bryan and i have been discussing him adding a minor in music to his degree. music is obviously a big passion of his and we both agree that he would love it. this was a little overwhelming to my forward-thinking, money-and-time-and-baby-conscience mind. when he first mentioned it to me, i was not very happy. i cried a little.
bryan is a great leader and a great man but we differ in the ways we plan things. he tells me everything (whether it's about what he's eaten today, or about our future, it makes no difference) that is on his heart or his mind, without necessarily thinking everything thouroughly through. he's just telling me everything, talking to me.
i, on the other hand, do not say anything on a serious level with out entirely thinking through my defense/case for making such a decision.
we're working on this. communication is key.
anyway, after a lot of discussion we decided that he should go for it and that it would be a great addition to his college education. i'm really excited and i think he's really excited to.
however, it changes up the plan. a lot.
raise your hand if you love changing plans?
*i cross my arms stubbornly*
i can't say it's something i love. but it's something i'm realizing is inevitable not just because of my choice in husband but because of my choice to follow the living God and live by His Spirit. again, i'm reminded how God speaks so clearly into my life through my future husband.

just in case you were wondering, here's the current plan:
>we get married on may 23rd, 2009
>lg continues to work until bryan graduates
>we move into a pretty expensive one bedroom apartment in august 2010
>bryan takes 10 more credits at dmacc in fall of 2009
>starts at isu january, 2010 (his 60 dmacc credits to transfer)
>we move into university village to save money in august of 2010 as bryan will be an isu student then.
>double majors in finance and management, graduates 6 semesters later in december, 2012
>bryan gets job
>pay off any debt we have with lg's income
>buy a house, get pregnant, have babies, etc.

and here's how it has changed:
>we get married on may 23rd, 2009 [this is staying the same hopefully]
>i continue to work until bryan graduates [this is also staying the same, and i have a lot of job security as i'm the only one who knows how to do what i do!]
>we move into a pretty expensive one bedroom apartment in august 2010 [delete this line!]
>bryan takes 10 more credits at dmacc in fall of 2009 [delete this one too!]
>starts at isu fall, 2009 (his 50 dmacc credits to transfer)
>we move into university village to save money in august of 2009 as bryan will be an isu student
>double majors in finance and management, minors in music, graduates 6-8 semesters later in december, 2013 [this seems like soooo far away]
>bryan gets job
>pay off any debt we have with lg's income
>buy a house, get pregnant, have babies, etc.

we'll see. i'll follow bryan wherever he leads our family. pray for us! we have a lot to do if bryan is going to be able to start at isu in the fall.

Wedding Planning/Marriage
we are getting married in 95 days! woot for double digits! it seems SO close now!
in the past few weeks i have:
>completely finished the constructions of the invitations and only have about half of the envelopes to address
>sent my awesome mother-in-law the guest list and ideas for the rehearsal dinner (we totalled almost 50 people! she was awesome about it though!)
>registered at pamperedchef.com! so fun! i wanted to get everything

as far as preparing for marriage goes, it's been really fun. i've been meeting with an awesome woman of God and bryan is going to start meeting with her husband again (they haven't been able to meet since last semester). we're in the engagement class with c-stone right now and i really like it. i'll have more on that later.

AND we picked out and bought our wedding bands on sunday! yay! i LOVE my wedding band. it's exactly what i wanted and the cheapest one of its style! bryan's is a similar story! praise God for sales! : )

Spiritual Growth/Learning
i've been learning a ton lately. i want to start updating regularly the things God is teaching me. i've been studying the book of Galatians for a little over a month and I want to articulate all that i've been learning so prepare to see blogs!
i'm also going to start reading a book by jerry bridges called, "The Discipline of Grace". i'm really excited because i have a very tiny grasp on God's grace. i'll update you on that too!

ok, i'm done for now. hopefully i'll take some more time to update so these aren't so long!


auntie LisaGrace and uncle Bryan! wahoo!

i call myself an 'aunt' to a lot of children, mainly atticus van voorst and the witthoeft children. but now bryan and i are going to REALLY be an aunt and an uncle and i couldn't be more excited!

my brother luke and his girlfriend diana are due in august with the first official duvick grandbaby! (i say official because we ALL count atticus as a part of our family, but you know...)

i hope its a boy, i don't know why. but i don't really care. i'm just excited! bryan is totally going to be crazy uncle bryan! i really did want to be an aunt before i was a mom! i'm so blessed!

wow. my thoughts are really scatterbrained because i'm so excited.

but anyway, that's the exciting news. on a related note, it got bryan and i talking about when his sister was going to have kids. they are going to have the cuuuuuttttest kids, little half-indian babys. i'm so excited.

maybe i just love babies. yep. i love babies and i'm going to have one in my family soon. : )