Goodbye city living…

Let’s face it. Steve and I are constantly talking about moving somewhere rural to live in a house with a wrap around porch and a big ass yard. So, it was just a matter of time that we end up in the suburbs. I think 9 years of city living is good enough unless we are back in Chicago, then I will gladly prolong my soccer mom, suburban life until we have little SHwangs. But three years of Baltimore city living? Sorry, peace out Charm City. Chicago stole my heart, and you don’t even compare.


About three months ago, Steve and I made the decision to move out of the city and take a stab at the suburban life. I know, I know, we don’t have kids, and we are still young, sort of. But to be completely honest, we wanted the peace and the quiet. (Wait, is this what getting old feels like?) PLUS, we bought our first car! Having a car gave us the flexibility to live farther away from the city. Or, we just wanted to drive our brand new car everywhere 😉 I mean, buying a car is a HUGE deal for us, such a grown up thing to do! It is the most expensive single expense we’ve ever spent in our entire lives. Not to mention, it is our first asset we own together!

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So, suburban life is happening y’all, and we love it! Because look! We have trees, lots of it! AND, did you know that living in a county means you receive coupon booklets in the mail?? Snip, snip. Yes, I’m that person. 



The SHwangs!

Being the lunatic planner that I am, wedding planning Google doc. and spreadsheet were already made prior to the proposal, just haven’t shared with him yet (crazy, I tell ya!). Now that the proposal happened, and Steve is positive that he still wants to spend the rest of his life with me, I didn’t hesitate on sharing my “pre-wedding planning” ideas. My Pinterest wedding board was already filled with loads of DIY, rustic, outdoor weddings. My vision was to create a rustic, laid back and super fun wedding with hints of personal touches from Steve and me with one rule – every single guest must be on the dance floor at some point throughout the night with a glass of alcoholic beverage of their choice in their hand. When I shared this vision of my dream wedding and pictures from Pinterest, Steve was fully on board with everything! And thank the lord for having similar style and taste, it made our planning that much easier!

After many, many trips to our local salvage yard, Home Depot, Jo-Ann Fabrics, Michael’s, scoping out every yard sale we came across and using the electric sander for the first time (I’m an expert now), we made our vision of a DIY outdoor BBQ wedding come true in real life. We said our “I Do’s” on May 31, 2014 and partied hard at All Seasons Apple Orchard in Woodstock, IL. Oh, and we became the SHwangs! 

10616237_10101551754962739_523380959472992496_n10177532_10101551733720309_232297008798423419_n1610816_10101551727772229_512150829952331881_n1896988_10101551727946879_5752746448077093795_n10678473_10101551873585019_8802942600433742307_n10154903_10101552341522269_6240122951131436243_n10516827_10101552364151919_7691373873987165162_n10001128_10101552517270069_4621991278004807300_oThe beautiful photography is by Cling & Peck, and we can’t forget about our wedding video trailer found here by Autumn Tree Films.

If you wish to see more wedding pictures, they can be found on Cling & Peck, and our DIYs can be found on my Pinterest here.


This is the first day of our lives

After months of constant pestering, hinting and being completely ridiculous like “accidentally” not closing out of a picture of an engagement ring on his computer, Steve said those precious 4 words I’ve been dying to hear on February 23, 2013. It was absolutely perfect and every emotion you can ever imagine hit me all at the same time when I said “YES!”. I would not change it for the world..well, except maybe one thing. Our proposal story has a twist and let me just say before I share it, of course it would happen to me.

We went on our annual snowboarding trip to Loveland, CO with our friends. Steve had it all planned out – on our second day of boarding, on top of the slope, he will pop the question. That didn’t exactly happen the way he had hoped. You see, the first day out on the slopes, and on our LAST run of the day, I fell, broke my left arm in three pieces, got rushed to the ER, and had an overnight operation to repair my broken arm (with metal rods, pins and all). Poor Steve, he probably had a heart attack. He was with me by my bedside the entire night massaging my swollen sausage fingers. He later told me, he was worried that the ring might not fit!


Needless to say, Steve had to alter his well-thought-out proposal plan but was still determined to go through with it! And I certainly did not want to ruin our vacation with him and my best friends! So after I was discharged the next morning, we went back to our condo to rest and tidy up for our dinner reservation in Breckenridge. Even though I was totally out of it from pain meds, I’m so glad I mustered up my strengths to keep our reservation, because right before dinner is when he proposed!

Steve wanted to stop by an overlook before going to the restaurant to take some pictures. This didn’t surprise me, because he had recently picked up photography as his hobby. While posing to get our picture taken by our friends (big props to my best friends for keeping it a secret and not giving it away!), he asked me to marry him!


And that’s how Maddie & Steve began! (and how I partially became a terminator)