Thursday, January 21, 2010

“No distance of place or lapse of time can lessen the friendship of those who are thoroughly persuaded of each other’s worth.” ~Robert Southey

Christmas means many wonderful things; among them is reconnecting with loved ones. So, we have decided to launch the classic tradition of the Christmas letter for the Bradley family.

We’ve been on the move since our wedding in June 2008. Our quiet union in Kauai with immediate family was a picture-perfect way to start our lives together. We appreciated friends and family celebrating with us at receptions in Vancouver, British Columbia and Colorado Springs; it meant a lot for us to be able to meet and re-establish contact with so many people who have been important in our lives. (Wedding photos can be viewed at

For Christmas 08, we drove to Montana to be with Carrie’s family (the Ericksons). Sub-zero temps didn’t keep us from cross-country skiing and having an all-around good time. On our return trip we dodged avalanches to get an amazing downhill powder day in Jackson Hole, WY. Sun and warmer weather greeted us in Colorado for a ski day in Steamboat Springs, before returning to home turf at Winter Park. We enjoyed season passes at Winter Park and feel blessed to enjoy our cozy townhouse which provides a warm and relaxing retreat for us. (Check it out at

Although we enjoy skiing, we welcome warmer weather. Our week-long summer trip took us to the East Coast. We visited Joel’s family friends, Dick and Evelyn Mack, at their cottage on Nantucket Island—a special place to Joel since childhood. We toured the island on bikes and savored the sea breezes. Carrie got to meet Joel’s aunt, Joan, and cousin, David, at their home in Manchester, NH. We drove from there to Maine for a couple days, then back down to Boston, where we were once again warmly hosted by Dick and Evelyn. We got to experience the spectacle of 4th of July fireworks in Boston, right where so many events related to American independence took place.

The following weekend Carrie finished her 6-year National Guard commitment and “retired” from the Air Force. Weddings also kept us busy in July. Carrie traveled to Michigan to attend cousin Herb and Jackie’s wedding. Then Carrie and Joel attended his cousin Anne and Eric’s wedding in Grand Lake, CO. In August we convened again with the Ericksons and Bradleys at the cabin in B.C., Whaleback—this time for a play week (last year was work week), including kayaking and hiking. Speaking of hiking, we continue to enjoy “bagging” 14ers—mountains over 14,000 feet—and got one in, San Luis Peak, on a backpacking trip over Labor Day weekend. Joel also climbed Stewart Peak at 13,983. Later in the summer, Carrie competed in her first mountain bike race, a 25-miler, in Winter Park.

We’ve been getting more involved in our church, and in our “spare” time volunteer as small-group leaders for highschoolers. Carrie graduated from Colorado Institute of Massage Therapy’s year-long program in October and started working at Toccare Massage Clinic, VillaSport, and started Bridgeport Massage Therapy (check out the Joel-managed site at Joel continued his 11th year at Rimrock Group, Inc. (RGI), where he has taken on new tasks in three-dimensional design and also technical writing. The company reached milestones this year in moving to a brand-new, luxurious office space, and taking the entire company (with families) to Mexico.

As you probably know (or can deduce), when we’re not working we like to be traveling! In October, Joel went to Oregon for a spiritual retreat and we drove to Telluride for a snowy, but sunny weekend stay. Joe and Bonee (Carrie’s folks) drove to Colorado to spend a lovely Thanksgiving with us in the Springs and Winter Park. This Christmas we will be at home in Colorado Springs, then on the 26th we head to Cancun for a week, courtesy of RGI. We are looking forward to visiting Paul and Joyce (Joel’s folks) in Vancouver for the winter Olympics in February.

We hope to hear how you’re doing and what you’ve been up to as well. Merry Christmas and a happy 2010!

Saturday, March 14, 2009

One Year Later

Yes, I pretty much abandoned this blog for an entire year. I don't expect anyone to be checking back, but for anyone who may stumble upon it--I figure I owe an explanation, or at least an update!
So, life got busy. That's the main thing. Lots of changes have happened. I got married to the love of my life on June 17, 2008. We had a reception in Vancouver, BC, Canada and one in Colorado Springs. We've had much fun hiking, skiing, and living life together.
Also, I underwent a rather drastic career change. God graciously directed me away from my editing job in September, 2008. The next month I started a one-year program at the Colorado Institute of Massage Therapy. I'm absolutely loving it, and may direct future writings here to related subjects. Maybe I'll change the blog name too.
Another reason I've been delinquent on this blog is that I became a Facebooker, which has been a fun and distracting way to keep in touch with people.
There you have it--my life in the last year in a very small nutshell.

Friday, March 14, 2008

We Have a Wedding Plan

I know many of you out there are wondering what's up with Carrie and Joel's wedding.

Here it is 3 months after we got engaged, and still no announcement of a date.
To put it simply: planning a wedding is complicated--even when you're trying to make it simple!

Joel and I decided we wanted to have a laid-back wedding somewhere memorable, unusual and exotic. Rather than expect a host of guests to follow us, we opted to have only our immediate family attend the ceremony. Joel and I each have two parents and an older brother who will join us.

After much deliberation and shuffling over schedules, we have confirmed June 17, 2008 as our wedding day. The location for the ceremony will be this lovely little church in Hanalei, Kauai. The officiant is the church's pastor, Kahua Alpha.

I've purchased my dress from the Galina collection at David's Bridal. Thankfully it was not a difficult decision, and I found exactly what I wanted right away. Shopping can be torturous for me. (I still remember how I spent weeks searching for the perfect 8th-grade graduation dress.)
I'm still in the process of choosing flowers and church decor, but I really like this bouquet with lots of bright colors.

The mothers have coordinated their dress with aqua colors, and we're thinking the guys will wear khaki pants with white shirts. We will probably do the traditional Hawaiian leis. One of the most important details for us is good photography. I'm really excited about working with Rachel Robertson (check out her website).

There are so many details involved. Honestly, we've been a little overwhelmed--but excited! We really are not into all the hoopla that can go into such an event. The multi-billion dollar wedding industry and all the peripheral junk that goes along with it kind of makes me sick. Yes, the start of a marriage should be celebrated and commemorized, I think, but do you really need a $50 cake-cutting knife? Ok, I'll get off that rant.

Though we're not doing things "the traditional way,"we still want to involve others close to us in the festivities. Our community of friends and family is important to us and we want them to be a part of not only our wedding, but also our marriage.

So, we're planning a reception here in Colorado Springs (or vicinity) on Sept. 13. We like this day because it will be my parent's 39th anniversary, and we can have a big ol' celebration of marriage. We know that's quite some time after the wedding. If you could look at our summer calendar, you would understand (I hope). We also want to give those who will be attending time to plan, book flights, etc..
By then we should be fairly well settled, so people can come visit our abode. Several have asked where we will make our home. Here's a picture of Joel's house, where I will move in once we're married.

Despite the hecticness of it all, we're enjoying the process, and Joel and I are very much looking forward to the future.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Freaky Be

This morning as I scanned an e-newsletter, I came to the following quote: “You must be the change you wish to see in the world."--Mahatma Gandhi (Indian political leader)

Immediately, I thought, “What a coincidence! Yesterday I heard a song to that affect.”

And right as I thought it, that very song [Eric Bibb's "Spirit I Am"] came on my iTunes and the lyric, “Am I the change I long to see?” played.

I’ll take it as a sign and a challenge. How can I be the change I long to see?

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Believing the Best

Do you ever doubt that God of the universe could love you?

Though I could look you in the eye and truthfully say, “Jesus loves me,” my actions communicate I don’t really believe God truly loves me, or that others genuinely do either.

Recent interactions have reminded me how far I have yet to go in believing the best about God (that He has my best interests at heart) and believing the best about others close to me (that they really like me and value my company and wouldn’t want to intentionally hurt me).

I wonder, why is believing the best so difficult and/or risky?

Monday, February 25, 2008

Dancing With God

My mom sent recently this to me. I don’t know who wrote it, but I like it:

When I meditated on the word Guidance, I kept seeing "dance" at the end of the word.
I remember reading that doing God's will is a lot like dancing.
When two people try to lead, nothing feels right.
The movement doesn't flow with the music, and everything is quite uncomfortable and jerky. When one person realizes that, and lets the other lead, both bodies begin to flow with the music. One gives gentle cues, perhaps with a nudge to the back or by pressing lightly in one direction or another. It's as if two become one body, moving beautifully.
The dance takes surrender, willingness, and attentiveness from one person and gentle guidance and skill from the other.
My eyes drew back to the word Guidance.

When I saw “G” I thought of God, followed by “u” and “i.”
“God, "u" and "i" dance."

God, you, and I dance.
Dance together with God, trusting God to lead and to guide you through each season of your life.

Even cake decorators need editors

Wal-Mart Employee: "Hello 'dis Walmarts, how can I help you?"
Customer: "Yes, I would like to order a cake for a going away party this week."
Wal-Mart Employee: "Whatcha want on the cake?"
Customer: "Best Wishes Suzanne."
And underneath that, "We will miss you."

Tuesday, February 19, 2008


Today I’m thankful I have a healthy body, and that my most of my family and close friends do too. When I hear about friends of friends who are experiencing extreme health struggles (cancer, strokes, paralysis, etc…) I realize how often I take for granted my lack of maladies.
Though I’m tempted to complain about how a new prescription is affecting my body in odd ways, I realize how much worse it could be, and how much worse it is for many. Then I remember to pray for them and to do anything else I can to help. I also remember how much better it will be in heaven where there is no disease, no pain or suffering.
In the meantime, between here and heaven, I ask God to comfort the hurting, heal the sick, and bind up the brokenhearted.