I’m going to start with the one of the most important parts of this all.

where it all began.

it’s crazy to think that “we” used to mean just ry & I. but that was all that we knew & we were completely happy with that.

speaking of my guy & I…

surprisingly *sarcasm*, our relationship took off at high-speed from the get-go. we weren’t one of those couples that really tried to ease into things. (psh, kids)

we were each others from the second we met.

a night or two after we met, I was spending some girl time with my kyra lady (hello last half slice of pumpkin pie) & I will never forget telling her, “I could spend forever with this guy, but if for some reason it doesn’t work out that way, I want him to stay in my life.”

ugh, I’m so fortunate to still have him by my side.

what we have together, is so much more than a relationship. we are the best of friends, always have been.

* a little fun fact for all of ya. we have been together for just a few days short of three years & we have never, not even once, spent a full day away from one another. yes, we’re one of THOSE couples. *

I remember sitting in his room (which would later become my room) & thinking to myself, “holy moly, this is it, like this is really it, he’s the one”.

that night, we were getting comfy & cozy to watch a movie. I was drinking a glass of root beer (our all time favorite drank) as I yelled to him, “get your booty over here!!!”, so that we could start the movie. he REAL LIFE came running over, jumped onto the couch (like a damn ninja) & splashed soda all over me & into my eyes!  I took off running up the stairs to rinse out my eyeballs & ry followed close behind to make sure I didn’t fall down, ya know, considering he temporarily blinded me & all… after rinsing my eyes, I started to cry. it seriously hurt. he pulled me in close & said,” I know this is probably a bad time, but I can’t keep it to myself any longer kristen, I’m in love with you, like I really love you.” of course, I started crying even harder. I was ecstatic, so ecstatic that I didn’t realize I didn’t say it back! he went mute. after a hot minute, it registered & I yelled, “oh my gosh! no, no, no! I love you too, so much!” we hadn’t been together for very long, hell, we hadn’t even seen each others bad sides yet, but we were certain of one thing. we were crazy about each other.

when you know, you know.

& we knew. so much so, that we moved in together after only dating for a few short months… INTO HIS PARENTS HOUSE! we were out of minds. I wouldn’t change a thing.

we spent many months just appreciating our time together & traveling (damn near impossible now with a tiny & three fur kiddos)!  multiple trips to the zoo & to universal studios, a few trips to catalina island & one trip to the east coast to meet his whole family (the humidity murdered my hair lol). we really got to know each other, inside & out. the good & the ugly! we argued a lot, but we loved each other a lot, more. no matter how incredible your relationship is, there will always be things to argue about. if not, RUN! that man is not human. RYAN drives me absolutely bananas sometimes… like, is it really that hard to flush the damn toilet? or throw your dirty clothes INTO the hamper, not on the floor next to it? or maybe even not play video games for 8 hours straight? I’m trying to watch me some criminal minds, guy!

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despite our silly differences, our love conquered everything. it was now late october & we were dead set on getting our own little place! we rented a one bedroom apartment, the next town over (little did we know there would be a new addition arriving soon)! we couldn’t get our furniture moved in until the day after we signed our lease, but waiting to sleep in our new home was most definitely not an option. we spent our first night sleeping on the floor, surrounded by candles, smiling from ear to ear.

I don’t think we actually got any sleep that night. NO, not because of “that”! you dirty dogs. okay, maybe a little bit of that… but honestly, we spent the most of our night being mushy, gushy & gross. discussing our future together, being direct about exactly what we wanted in life. we quickly figured out exactly want we wanted… us, this, each other. we even talked about “the b word” yep! babies! we picked out names (that we didn’t even end up going with lol), we talked about how adorable our kids would be (& hopefully tall). trust me guys!!! we had it all figured out!!! *more sarcasm*

three days later, on halloween, I asked ryan a question that he saw coming from 1,000,000 miles away.

* SO, as most of you know, if you follow me on social media, I am completely animal crazy. like, I could most definitely have 99 dogs & 20 cats (eh, they’re still furry) & be the happiest woman alive.

ryan? not so much! when we met, his family had one cat (whom they still have & is a complete a-hole). he had never had a dog before… how did he survive his whole life without a doggy? your answer is as good as mine.*

I decided to meet him in the middle on this one. (lucky bastard)

OKAY, I’m sure you all know what is coming, at this point… that morning we woke up & ry surprised me by telling me that he had the day off! I thought to myself, “okay kris, go for it, you got this!” he was rambling on & on about somethin’ (probably football or me being excessive about something, whatever *rolls eyes*) & I couldn’t even wait until he finished blabbing. I blurted out, I need a baby kitty, & I need it now!” he had a huge smile on his face & said, “well it’s saturday, let’s head over to petsmart & see if they have any kittens for adoption!” I don’t think I’ve ever put clothes on so fast.

*let me just remind all of you, this was ME who wanted a baby kitty. ME. not ryan.*

when we got there, both of us held 4 or 5 kittens, but none stuck out as our cat. then ryan saw “itsy”. he picked her up & it was immediate. that sweet little “itsy” became our “rooney” in a heartbeat. more like ryan’s rooney, but whatever. if you know us personally, YOU KNOW about ry & roon, but you’ll hear more about that later!

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then there were 3…

ryan continued to work hard (as usual) to make ends meet & I held down the fort while I was in between jobs. we missed him so much during the day. I will never forget when I thought rooney was a lot to handle… my 3 pound kitten. I used to text ry while he was at work saying, “bub, you need to come home, the cat won’t stop meowing & climbing shit!!!” I had absolutely no idea what life had in store for me.

it was finally time for the holiday season… you have probably already assumed I’m wild about the holidays, right? my mama, who is no longer with us, was CRAZY about the holidays, so it’s kind of my way of keeping her here, with me. you better believe I decorated every inch of that apartment, top to bottom.

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we went hard on christmas that year. let’s just say, we ate cup o’ noodles for quite some time, after that. so worth it.

OH. & no big deal or anything, ryan gave me my promise ring, on christmas morning!

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I know what you’re thinking, “if that’s your promise ring, imagine what your wedding ring will look like!” yep. he’s amazing.

it was the best christmas yet.

come february, I was getting that itch again.. ya know… the one, where you NEED another pet? no? just me? alright. but this time, the itch was being specific… it was screaming, “german shepard!!!!!” so freaky right? this was not going to be quite as easy. I had been thinking about it for days, but I waited until Monday to go look as this little girl I had my eye on. it was the day before valentine’s day, why not spend a few thousand dollars on a dog for your girlfriend for v-day? seemed legit to me, so I went to see her. I had to have her. ryan immediately said, “no babe, we don’t need her!” well duh, I didn’t say we needed her. that night, when he got off work, we went to see her one last time jussssst to make sure.

I literally saw his mind change the second he saw her. “babe, are you sure it’s a no?” & he responded with, “god damnit, she’s perfect.”

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then there were 4…

he named her charlie. letting him name her was the least I could do! she was a terror. a complete & utter terror. there were multiple occasions where ryan said & I QUOTE, “I don’t love her, babe, I don’t love this animal.” I never, in my life thought a sweet little girl could possibly be so bad… another thing that I will come back to at a different time.

regardless of how much damage she did, we did love her & she has ended up being one of our biggest blessings.

she’s my best friend.

a few weeks later we went on our first family vacay with our little devil pup, to sequoia national park! I was about to begin a new job, so we thought we would celebrate a bit. every morning we ate crappy hotel breakfast & then went to hike our butts off, for four days straight. it was a blast.

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on monday morning, we headed back home. it was THE WORST car ride of my life. I was getting sick every ten minutes on the dot. ryan had to pull over on the freeway multiple times & I added a little bit of character to a gas station in bakersfield… by covering it in throw up (sorry gas station guy!)

*hint hint, kane’s due date was exactly nine months after our trip to sequoia*

when we got home, I slept for two days straight before starting my new job. as I’m writing this, I’m thinking to myself, “really kristen, you didn’t think something else was going on?” so dumb.

the first week of my new job, I spent the majority of my mornings in the bathroom. of course, I chalked it up to a tummy bug & ignored “the other” alternative. that saturday, I was still feeling icky. ry finally said, “babe, I don’t think you’re sick… it would have subsided by now.”

& off to walgreen’s we went

we were about to get the best news of our lives

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there it was, clear as day!

our kane was growing in my tumtum.