Saturday, November 26, 2011
Hopefully none of my guys friends clicked on this blog entry if they did let me preface this entire post with two things I love my wife and want to never forget anything about our 1st year, and I love Christmas. With that said yesterday we picked out our 1st Christmas tree. It was the day after a wonderful Thanksgiving at the in-laws (PHOTOS) I would love to start this story with, "Their was a Holiday chill in the air as I arose on November 25th, 2011, but we live in Orlando and it was sunny and 72 degrees. We had very little to do on this day so we woke up very late. (The Brinkmans and Raskins know how to party. I ended Thanksgiving asleep on the living room sofa while the ladies of the house closed down the day outside by the fire with the Hookah) The lady and I watched some football, ate turkey sandwiches and she squeezed in a nap. After the slow start to the day it was time to head out to our local mom and pop Christmas tree stop, Home Depot.
We did the lights before we went to a movie with some friends and then very unplanned we did all the ornaments while we watched Elf late into the night. (I searched Direct TV for anything Christmas and pretty much tivoed every holiday movie that airs.) I had so much fun doing the tree. My parents will remember how into Christmas I was as a child and it wasn't just because of the presents I love it all. This was a special night with my wife, our 1st tree. Although, I still managed to get the PBG "eye" for breaking an ornament. I was being "careless" I somehow blamed Santa. haha At 2:45AM the ornaments had all been hung and Dodger had already left us and burrowed deep into the covers on our bed. It was time for bed. Christmas is here.
(More Tree Photos)
Wednesday, September 21, 2011
Last Friday PBG and I set off to Cancun, Mexico for our 1st summer, albeit late, vacation. It was our 1st time to Mexico. If you leave out that one quick trip across the border in Juarez, Mexico where I believe my dad almost let the Autumn Rose (our van) get stolen. We took an early flight from Orlando to the ATL and then down to Mex. Not very convenient but the flights were way cheap (thanks to miles from working at EA). The travel time was pretty uneventful, I drugged myself with Dramamine not once but twice and magically arrived in Cancun. I do not know what I expected from the Cancun Airport or Cancun in general. I generally do tons of pre-vacation research but was too busy at work to be real prepared. As we walked into the Cancun airport it was very nice, pretty quick run through customs, thanks to my wonderful wife for filling out all the forms (a plus I had not known about when planning on getting married, I don’t think I ever have to fill out anything again). We jumped into a van/taxi with 3 other families are we set off to find the beach. The driver was by no means safe. He was the opposite. The drive was about 20 minutes from the airport, after about 15 minutes we started to see the gulf and to our surprise the water looked way bluer than I thought. As we arrived at the Westin Lagunamar you could see from the lobby, past the HUGE infinity pool to the gulf and again I was shocked at how the ocean looked like a giant fake blue pool. I have known many people that went to Mexico and they all talked about it being blue, and the water being clear but they never expressed how ridiculously blue the water is.
As we checked in we found out that our room, booked mostly with points, was actually a villa. It took us awhile to navigate from the lobby to our room (getting to our room was a maze we never really figured out) but this room was ridiculous. I’m pretty sure PBG quickly pointed out in a very confident serious voice, “We could live here, we could live in a place like this” I think I was quick to point out we would have to let Dodger decide. You can see the video below….
The room had it all, full size kitchen, large dining table, beautiful Mexican pottery, 2 flat panel TV’s (with at least 5 English stations- yahtzee), a huge main bedroom with a king size bed. I think Westin is known for their Heavenly beds, and it did not disappoint. And the best part was the bathroom and the Jacuzzi bathtub. Before this starts sounding like an ad for Westin instead of a blog I will just say the room was terrific.
I’m pretty sure I was in my swimsuit in 90 seconds. A short walk away from our room was their pool side restaurant, and the extra-large infinity pool. Our meal was serviceable pizza for me, tacos for her, and 2 margaritas. As we waited for our meal we snuck away for a short trip to see the water and beach. It was almost like we had to make sure what we saw from the lobby was real. It was and it rocked my world. After lunch we took on that beast of an infinity pool.
I swear this infinity pool lined the gulf with probably 100 feet panoramic view of Mexico’s great gem, their blue blue water. I think we stayed here for a while, maybe a trip or two to the swim up bar. At one point we went out to take on the gulf and it was nice. They had yellow flags up everywhere which we would learn was not as bad as red. (Story to be continued)
After a while at the pool we decided it was getting close to dinner time and we should probably rest before that. Once in the room PBG fell asleep and I mean she was out. I searched the net on the slowest Wi-Fi ever. I think in Mexico Wi-Fi is similar to 1G which predates 3G by a few years. Although it was free! I fought and fought and fought and I finally gave up. Sleep usually wins. Our 1 hour pre-dinner nap turned into a 3.5 hours naplet that threw off the entire evening. Once awake it was almost 10pm and all the “family” joints were closed. We decided on night 1 to take on the “PARTY” area of Cancun. We took a bus for 8.5 pesos per person down to the "Hotel Zone or El Centro. This is the hub of all the parties, clubs, and nightlife in Cancun. It was also the hub for many people wanting to sell you things, trips, jewelry, drinks, sea shells and hats. You wanted it they had it, and they were very aggressive. They did not really care if you just said no thank you to 3 other people right before them, they were up next and dangit they thought maybe there is a chance that you’re down here at almost 11pm looking for this cigar. My favorite line was from a guy on the beach, “necklaces, hats ….something else...” he offered. I was not real sure what “something else” meant, and we never found out. We walked all over this party zone to find out it’s pretty crappy and kind of scary at night. We decided Carlos n Charlie’s looked the safest and has the least amount of loud music. After a mediocre meal, and a few laughs with a guy that made our guacamole table side we ventured back to the hotel.
Finding a bus to get to the hotel zone easy, finding one out of the hotel zone not as easy. At one point we walked down a darkish street for a couple blocks. With water and bushes to our right, and signs that read “beware of crocodiles” PBG said “If someone jumps out of here I am hitting them with these pepsis” We made it back to the Westin and pretty much decided that night. We don’t really care about “PARTY’N IT UP” in Cancun. Thankfully, we did not see that part of town again.
Day 1 was amazing a full travel day, and a full beach day.
Wednesday, August 24, 2011
Make sure you watch the next 2 videos as Sadie creates 2 spectacular outfits for Patricia and Brent's time on the runway.
Monday, July 25, 2011
is an easy trip on one red bull. As we pulled into Hallandale Beach we had to stop by Publix for Key Lime Pie for the Main Player Wayne, and we had a quick stop at a walk up liquor store. Check out when this liquor store closes.
They know how to party in South Florida. Maria's house was fun. We were in town for PBG's cousin or "primo" Luisito's b-day so when we arrived Friday evening there was alot of family already there having so much fun. I have to say it is such a blast to be a part of this new family with so much life and culture. And I am sure Wayne enjoys having another Gringo in the familia. We talked with everyone late into the night. This seems to be a staple when hanging with the sisters, late night chats that usually end up in laughter, dancing or both. (No dancing this time)
The next day we all headed to Hollywood Beach. As a newbie to Florida I am on a hunt for my favorite beach in
the state and Hollywood beach is up there. The area we went to had a really neat boardwalk along the beach lined with stores, restaurants and bars. (For reference Hollywood beach is about 15 miles north of the famous South Beach) The sand was so hot. We literally had to run from our shaded beach chairs to the ocean. This was a pretty chilled beach day, go in the ocean, rest in the chair, read an fantasy football article on your phone, you know normal beach day.
That night we stayed in a hotel closer to Fort Lauderdale with Wayne and Nydia. After a few minutes to clean up from the beach and relax we were back on the town to celebrate Luisito's b-day at dinner. We went to a Spanish Tapas restaurant very similar to Ceviche in Orlando. The music was loud, and the food was good. The only down fall is there Coke was no bueno. I actually walked down the street to a small store to buy a can coke. The two white boys (Wayne and myself) had our own date at the head of the table as we shared what can be called nothing more than a meat platter (sausage, steak, weiners and more) It was a good night.
That night in the hotel was perfect. I have never slept so good on a pullout sofa bed, but we were way tired. The next day PBG and I slept I think until 11am. When I told her it was 11am, as if to say let's get up. She rolled back over to go back to sleep. (My lady can sleep) After I ran out to get a Burger King Chicken Sandwich (worst decision of the weekend) we finally took off for Las Olas Blvd. I am told that means "the waves" This is a part of Fort Lauderdale Beach. This beach looks like a Florida beach from a movie. A1A drives right next to the beach with the other side of the street lined with hotels, restaurants shopping and much more. This is obviously the place to be.
After we walked the strip for a few minutes we found a nice patio table to sit down and enjoy the ocean breeze. The name of this place was Cafe del Mar. They had a good musician that kept us entertained. He even played a little country for Wayne. While Patricia was killing some mussels, I was racing Miss Nydia to finish a giant margarita (a race that I lost). It was a great weekend but sitting by the beach with the fam having drinks and just talking was truly a highlight. I am pretty sure Wayne said "There goes my boat" 1,000 times.
Las Olas Blvd was great. I will definitely return. After we left the beach we headed over to Amanda Colon's house for the actual Luisito b-day BBQ. Luis cooked a mean burger and corn on the cob. After we watched the kids play some Kinect dance game it was time to drive back to Orlando.
What a great weekend. After we arrived home I had to pack to head to NYC but not before Dodger could get into some dark chocolate and PBG helped make him throw up. What an eventful day. PBG was great with the Dodge and he is fine.
Tuesday, July 19, 2011
Now that the wedding is 4 months behind us I had to come up with another way to live out my, I mean our lives as a reality show. Since I last posted so much has happened. Here is my attempt of wrapping up the last few months with a nice little bow. I want to also put out this disclaimer. The below order is random and not in the order of importance.
The Dallas Mavericks are the 2011 NBA Champions. (OK Maybe it is a ranking of importance) This year could not get much better. I married Patricia and my favorite sports team finally came together in a dream like fashion to win it all. It was glorious. Patricia and I were able to travel down to Miami and go to Game 2 of the Finals (The most important game. The Mavs were down 15 in the 4th, and came back to win) This Championship might be the biggest sports victory of my life, and we were there for a piece of it. It was so much fun to experience most of the playoffs with my wife. When I went to Vancouver and LA during the playoffs I was bummed to not be able to watch the games with her and her Jason Kidd jersey (we bought her a new Jersey after round 1).
Patricia's new job: (This is actually the most important) Patricia and I have been so blessed in the first few months. Seeing how God blessed Patricia with this great new job was amazing. I won't try to go into too much detail, but PBG is now the Executive Director for a non-profit called Camaraderie Foundation. To find out more go here. http://www.camaraderiefoundation.com/ I am so proud of PBG. It is so nice to see her excited to go to work everyday (no offense UCF) and passionate about the people she is helping.
New House: (It's not yellow and blue now, this is an old picture, new pictures when I finish my work) For those of you that don't know we have left Park Lake St and moved 1 mile away to "The Grays on Garvin" We have lived here for a couple weeks and it's still coming together. It's been so much fun getting our first house together, moving in together, cleaning, painting, and having friends over to help. For those of you that don't know I love projects! So this new house has been so much fun. I get to go to Home Depot, work in the yard, and use my drill. Just this weekend I leveled the back yard, ripped up some grass, laid mulch for the new flower bed, installed a new porch light, spray painted and hung our mailbox and address numbers (FUN)! The backyard is a bit untamed so Dodger as you can imagine is enjoying the daily adventure. The House is a 2 bedroom 2 bath built in 1928 in Colonialtown North. We are planning on having a small house warming party in a few weeks when the house is in better order. First I have to get some grass, lights, and fire pit in the back yard. (So excited) So stay tuned.
While those are the big ticket items, I wanted to quickly hit on a few other stories.
- We have a new Bible Study group that meets on Tuesday nights. This has been such a great blessing. I have met some new friends and we are really enjoying our time with all of their 1 year old babies (no mom that does not mean we are ready).
- For the Anniversary of our 1st date I had a scavenger hunt through Orlando that backtracked some of the fun things we did over the past year, and it ended where we had out 1st kiss. We had dinner, danced and drinks on a public dock on Lake Maitland (at 1 point we thought we were going to get kicked out).
- We might have a new Dodger (BIG MIGHT). We found a Mini B&W Piebald Dachshund puppy (2 weeks old) at the Orlando Humane Society when we volunteered there for Nice Serve. I will call back on August 1st to check on his status but if we get him his name is "MAVERICK".
- We just booked our summer vacation. We went back & forth about Chicago or not Chicago. At the last minute we felt Chicago wasn't what we wanted for this trip. We decided on 5 days 4 night in Cancun, Mexico. Here is where we are staying: The Westin Lagunamar
Tuesday, May 3, 2011
Friday, April 22, 2011
Maid of Honer- Isabel Ibanez
Bets Man- Jordan Kokel
Father of the bride- Wayne Brinkman
Grooms toast: Eric Gray
Tuesday, April 5, 2011
I have been in Florida for almost 4 years now. When I landed in the Sunshine State I was FORCED to change my Texas license plates to Florida. (FYI both plates still exist in my house, but were recently taken off display). After that heartbreaking moment I was told that I had to get a Florida driver’s license. I asked the sweet lady over the counter at the DMV, "Can I at least keep my TX DL"? She replied, "only if I cut it in half." She then proceeded to butcher not only my Texas driver’s license but one of the last active pictures of me with hair.
I share that to tell you today because of marriage, I have lost the last bit of Texas I had. To combine mine and Patricia’s AT&T accounts I had to get a FL number or she had to get a TX number. I asked her via text" would you be willing to get a 214 number". Her response was simply, "nope." I actually got my iPhone while I lived in Florida, but I did it over the holidays in Texas so I could once again keep a Texas area code.
Let me make these proclamations today: I will not relinquish the Texas flag bumper sticker on my camry, no matter how redneck it may look. I will not dispose of the copper decorative lone stars, now matter how useless they are. I will continue to try and develop an elaborate scheme of why we need to travel to Texas to have our children someday. And the framed Texas flag and Texas capital pictures I have… wait I think those have already been replaced with wedding photos (which I did).
I give up, I work in Florida, I live in Florida, I was married in Florida, but I am and forever will be a Texan.
As you can see from the screen shot to the left please update your records, my new number is 407-284-0608.
Friday, April 1, 2011
I had serving spoons, and serving trays. I had some art/pictures on the wall. I even had my pictures framed not duct taped over my toilet. Also, if you know me I often time had candles, even though the house smelled like Dodger. With all that said I want to tell you a few things around the house that have changed since gave my house to Patricia Brinkman.
1. I used to have some spices in the pantry. I now have Spice Jars
2. All my paper products used to be above the kitchen sink, they are now mostly in the laundry storage room.
3. I have a giant glass coffee pot that has yet to be used (I have already asked if we can return this- lost that battle)
4. The laundry is done
5. I have a coffee maker, but not a normal one. I have some steroid-ed up single shot coffee maker that Patrica loves more than me in the morning.
6. The trash can is no longer in the bottom of the panty.
7. The crisper, and other drawers in the fridge are actually being used appropriately.
8. I have new furniture from the in laws. It is awesome, but some how I lost the fight to keep my cloth couch facing the TV.
9. I watch much more TV in the room, rather than on my 42" big screen (so I can be with her as she reads)
10. I am asked 3 times a day "Are you done with this?" Which means "Can you put this crap away?"
11. All my plastic serving ware has been given to Andrew (You're welcome)
12. I have a wok
13. I own not 1 but 5 vases
14. My silverware, not silver, might be the most expensive thing in the house. (don't steal it)
15. It smells good
16. My kitchen table is now a pretty little kitchen island.
17. Dog food, shampoo, treats and other Dodger necessities has been banished from the kitchen to the storage room.
18. The shower is clean
19. I have a new YELLOW shower curtain
20. My DVD and game collection has been replaced by whats seems like 100 martini glasses.
21. My framed Sports Illustrated collection, and framed post of the Madden NFL 08 cover with Vince Young have all been taken down.
22. I have a tool case
23. My Queen size bed is too small for Dodger, me and Patricia
24. My Extra bedroom is now her closet
25. My clothes are folded in drawers instead of on the floor.
26. My Towels match
27. I found out there is a big difference between towels you clean the dishes with, you dry dishes with and that you use to clean with product. (BREAKING NEWS)
28. Along with that I found this certain "yellow" kitchen towel has no purpose except to look pretty.
29. Some pots, knives, and ice cream scoopers are not dishwasher safe. (I washed them anyways)
30. We have a new sitting area in the bedroom. (that has yet to be used)
This list grows daily, and so does my love for Patricia Brinkman.
Friday, March 4, 2011
Please do this as soon as you can. The rooms that are not booked by Tuesday will go back into the Sheraton's public bookable rooms.
If you want to see our blog about the hotel, CLICK HERE!
Wednesday, February 9, 2011
Two of my sweet fabulous lady friends threw me a baller shower: Mrs. Barb Youngblood and Mrs. Susan (Sudie) Willcox. I was so blessed by this time and all the ladies that attended. There was some familia, friends from college/Young Life, and friends from work! We played a few games: designing a wedding gown out of toilet paper, “Patty” scategories, and I dressed up in a silly outfit!
The food was delish, including an awesome chocolate cake that had our wedding monogram on it! Eric and I received some amazing presents! It was a beautiful day that I am so thankful for and will remember with happiness. Thanks to Barb, Sudie and everyone that helped that day! Love!
Back to the honeymoon. We are so excited to be visiting the island of St Lucia and staying at Sandals.
It did not take us long to decide where to go. We would have loved Hawaii but neither of us wanted to endure the price and the travel day there and back. Sandals has a large mountain like HI but is right in out backyard. The day after the wedding we will travel down to Miami and then fly out the next day to St Lucia. We are staying 5 nights.
Here is a picture of our room at Sandals.
At Sandals it is all inclusive which we have never done so we are excited. As much food, drinks, or goodies you can eat. Also so many activities are built into the price. Although there are some fun things you can do that cost extra. We are going to try our best to zipline through the jungle. Another great feature is they have 3 resorts at St Lucia and you can visit all three for more restaurants, beaches, pools, bars, and events.
I am very excited about the wedding and being with Patricia for the rest of my life. But a close 2nd, the Honeymoon.
Friday, January 21, 2011
My vagueness probably doesn’t matter because Eric will most likely post photos of the evening! Just know the food will be good! This is another reason why we love our venue!
Eric: I had to add one story to this blog entry. I would like to publicly call out my fiance for not helping me out. As everyone knows I eat like a 12 year old. As they brought out the first course it was a salad I will never like. That is not a complaint about chef I merely don't like this type of salad. With that said I go on to taste different parts of this salad so it appears that I tasted it to our friends from the WPRC. After a few bites it still looked untouched. I kindly asked PB to help me out a little so it looks like I tried the salad. She had one olive and that was it. She even told me to "move it around a bit" She didn't help me at all and when Alexis came back I had to come out about my 12 year old food palette. I am kidding of course, this night was great. We were all by ourselves in the back of the bar, they were finishing up some new year remodeling. It was quiet, and awesome. The pool and lake looked great. We talked forever about how much fun this night is going to be. See ya soon March 12th.
Wednesday, January 19, 2011
After many consultations with Elizabeth Sloan (bridesmaid) and driving Eric crazy with font size and repositioning words and letters, the invitation design was complete! Jessica Meyer (matron of honor) suggested we contact Dave Oslin to print the invitations. Eric and I met with him and he was so great. Not only does he have extensive printing experience he is a great man. We had the opportunity to chat it up with him and share a little bit about our lives. He is our friend! We chose the paper to print the invites on (I love the paper). Dave printed the invitations amazingly fast and for a fabulous deal! Eric and I were so pleased.
Next came the addressing. For some strange reason I was really excited to address the invitations. I spent a Saturday addressing invites and eating doughnuts (no lie I ate 5 doughnuts that day). Eric came over to give me a break and we went to play tennis. I didn’t want to run while we were playing, probably because my stomach was full of powdered sugar and other evil/goodness. My mom was fabulous and stuffed/sealed all the envelopes!
Three days later the stamps arrived! I found these online and I L-O-V-E them
Isn’t it funny the things you can get excited about? Isabel Ibanez, (maid of honor) my mother and I stamped away, now the invitations are out in the mail and we are anxious for people to receive them!
Our wedding is less than 2 months away, and we are ready for it to be here. I know it has been awhile since we have posted on the blog so I wanted to spend some time today talking about what we have been up to. But first please enjoy a picture from New Years at the Brinkmans. Ok, back to the topic at hand...
A. We have finalized the groomsmen’s attire. I have been in so many weddings where the groomsmen were required to spend mucho dinero for a rental tux that we didn’t even keep. I wanted to keep it simple and cost efficient for my guys. I realized very quickly how tough that would be. I have literally visited every store in the Altamonte, Fashion, Millennia, and Florida malls, plus both Outlets here in Orlando, not to mention all the time I have spent online! I am happy to say everything has been selected and the boys will look sexy!
B. The Rehearsal Dinner was another tough thing to figure out. We wanted 4Rivers but the wedding venue or hotel won’t allow outside food venders. Then we started brainstorming houses we could do it at. That list was very short and was not going to work. Next, we decided to start looking at other Winter Park Restaurants. We decided on Buca di Beppo. Although, after contacting Buca we realized they were pricey and did not have the perfect room that would fit our group. (It won't be the smallest rehearsal dinner thanks to our legions of bridesmaids and groomsmen). We finally settled on an idea that I had months ago. My parents will be hosting the rehearsal dinner on the brick patio in my back yard with some good ole Texas barbecue from 4Rivers. We are so excited! It might be more work for my family but it provides us with so much freedom, and it will be much more memorable than taking over a mess hall at a local restaurant. Invitations for the rehearsal dinner will be going out shortly.C. We have booked our DJ and at least 2 live musicians for the ceremony. I can’t say too much here because Patricia already gets on to me for putting too much info on the blog. I think her words are, “You will put so much up there no one will need to come to the wedding because they saw everything already."
Be on the lookout later this week for another blog about the Invitations and our food tasting date at the Winter Park Racquet Club.
Saturday, January 1, 2011
Patricia and I have finally finished our wedding registry. We had so much fun with the scanner gun at stores and even more fun fine tuning our list online. If I could give anyone some advice I would say go to the stores to register for things you need to touch such as: bedding, silverware, glasses, etc. Everything else register for online, it is so much easier!
Registry #: 2652480
We had so much fun registering at PB. Here we registered for dishes, glasses, bedding and other decorative items.
Registry #: 11968594
On our B3 registry you can find items for the kitchen, bathroom, bedroom and other misellaneous items.
Here you can purchase adventures for us to enjoy on our honeymoon in St Lucia. You can also contribute to the overall cost of our honeymoon.