It’s crazy to think that Nick and I are celebrating our one year anniversary this weekend! In some ways it feels like we’ve been married for a lifetime, while other times, it feels like it was just yesterday that I was anxiously waiting for the moment I walked down the aisle to my groom. It has been the absolute best year and I still can’t believe how lucky I am to be married to my best friend, the love of my life, and my biggest supporter!
To be honest, we both weren’t quite sure what to expect in our first year of marriage. You hear that the first year is so challenging – so we were ready for both the highs and lows. What I didn’t expect was how fun & effortless this first year of marriage was for us. Of course, we put in the work to make it that way, but it was a pleasant surprise after hearing how hard adjusting to the first year could be. It’s been so nice to see us both grow and evolve in the last three hundred and sixty five days. We both continue to compromise, put each other first, and show our appreciation for the other. We love to joke around and be silly and really take the pressure off our day-to-day stress! I am very excited to see what this next year brings for us.
Last year, 30 days before we got married, Nick and I did a “he said, she said” Q&A post! We had such a fun time coming up with the questions ourselves and answering them separately. It was so well received and we had such a fun time doing it, that we decided to do it again to celebrate our one year anniversary. This year I opened up questions on my IG stories and got some great ones! Just like last year, we wrote our answers separately & then pasted them into the post, so we didn’t see each others answers beforehand!
ONE YEAR ANNIVERSARY “HE SAID, SHE SAID” Q&A
Q: HOW DID YOU KNOW NICK/EMILY WAS THE ONE?
Nick: Deep down, I always knew. I think once you get older, you start to realize all of the things you want out of the person that you want to spend your life with. As I did that, all roads pointed to Emily. We weren’t even dating at the time, but I knew I would never feel the same way about anyone else. When we finally ran into each other again, I knew it was meant to be. Later, we met for drinks and I couldn’t begin to explain how happy I was to be with her again. Once we closed the bar down, I walked her to her car, gave her a hug and kissed her on her forehead. Right then, I knew I would marry her.
Emily: I don’t think there was one single moment where I realized Nick was “the one.” Instead, it’s something that I knew over time. Since 2005 we have been through so much together – many life changes and moments that have been incredibly hard for both of us – and we’ve learned how to handle them as a team. We have both seen each other during bad situations, we’ve seen each other at our worst, lowest points, and we’ve survived and adapted together. We’ve also seen each other at our best moments. To me, I knew Nick was the one when he was the person I wanted to call and tell him about both mundane things and great victories. He was the one I wanted to be with forever and couldn’t imagine a day without. We bring out the best in each other and, to me, that shows he’s the one I’m meant to be with forever.
Q: HOW LONG HAVE YOU BEEN TOGETHER?
We have been together for a total of nine and a half years, off and on! We dated in high school and part of college for nearly six years. We got back together in 2015!
Q: HOW LONG DID YOU DATE BEFORE GETTING ENGAGED? HOW LONG WAS YOUR ENGAGEMENT?
We dated for a little over year and a half before Nick surprised me and proposed to me! We got engaged in December 2016 and immediately started discussing wedding plans. We both wanted a fall wedding – so we were engaged ten and a half months. For us, that was the perfect amount of time! I don’t think we could have done a longer engagement haha!
Q: ANY ADVICE FOR THE WEDDING DAY?
Nick: Make sure you schedule out time to enjoy the moment with just your spouse, even if it is taking 5 minutes to drink champagne and relax. You spend the whole day around friends and family and it was great to just have 5 minutes together to enjoy everything that you (your wife) has planned.
Emily: There are a few pieces of advice I will give! The first is to allow extra time when you’re getting ready. The day can be a little overwhelming, so try (if you can!) to take a walk around your venue by yourself and reflect on the day, etc. I did that and it really helped calm my nerves! Also make sure that you have a few moments alone with your spouse, no wedding party, no cameras, just the two of you! Nick and I did this when we got to our reception venue and it was SO nice and enjoyable to spend a few moments together just the two of us and soak it all in! And my last piece of advice is to remember that your wedding day is ONE day. Don’t set high expectations and don’t let that one day get in the way of prepping for your marriage! 😉
Q: LOOKING BACK ON YOUR WEDDING DAY, WHAT WAS YOUR FAVORITE PART?
Nick: Seeing Emily for the first time. That was the moment I had been looking forward to since we got engaged (long before that, actually) and I knew that would be my best memory from our day.
Emily: I can vividly remember our wedding day and there were so many parts that were my “favorites.” But the moment that still gives me butterflies was seeing Nick when the church doors opened. We didn’t do a first look so we were both anticipating that moment & it was so emotional!
Q: IF YOU COULD CHANGE ONE THING ABOUT YOUR WEDDING DAY WHAT WOULD IT BE?
Nick: I would have made sure I got some of the cupcakes and late night truffle fries. Everyone is right – you have to make it a point to eat everything on your wedding day or you will miss it! Fortunately our wedding planner made sure we ate dinner (mostly uninterrupted) but we missed out on the fun snacks. Our guests loved them, though.
Emily: Our wedding day was nothing short of perfect. Every decision was made with “us” in mind, so there’s not much that I would change in relation to that! The one thing I may have changed is our band. They were a great band but the communication leading up to our wedding was less than ideal. There were songs that we had as “must play” that didn’t get played and when they were on their two breaks their playlists weren’t our taste. We would have preferred to make a playlist during those times so we knew what songs we would be hearing. In the big scheme of things though it was no big deal & didn’t change the fun we had!
Q: WHAT IS ONE THING YOU’VE LEARNED IN YOUR FIRST YEAR OF MARRIAGE?
Nick: How important it is to set expectations with each other about everything. I think once you get to this stage, whether you are married or not, it is crucial to set expectations with your partner. Whether it is work related, personal goals, family traditions or anything else, you have to remember that you are a team and that everything you do impacts the person you’re with. Every decision you make will have an effect on your spouse, so knowing what the other expects is critical.
Emily: Over the last year we’ve both learned the best way to communicate, compromise, and be a team. Marriage is a 100% team effort. It’s so important to remember that you’re in this together and there’s no winner or loser. As a team you always need to choose each other first over everything else. It’s also important to note that sometimes a team member may pull more weight when the other team member needs them. Marriage isn’t always 50/50 and that’s ok!
Q: WHAT’S BEEN THE HARDEST PART ABOUT BEING MARRIED?
Nick: Setting expectations with family. Emily and I are the first of our siblings to be married, so I think there has been a learning curve with all of our families. Fortunately they have been great, but trying to manage holidays and birthdays, while trying to start our own traditions has been a bit of a struggle at times.
Emily: Hmm… this is a hard one! I think the biggest struggle this year has been how to juggle our families now that Nick and I are also a family. We have traditions that we want to start, while also still participating in family outings & events. We both have divorced parents so it’s technically four families we have to schedule around for the holidays, birthdays and major events! We’re fortunate that we have such a big, wonderful family but it does require a little juggling and planning, all while keeping everyone in mind! I think we’re all slowly figuring it out though.
Q: WHAT HAS SURPRISED YOU ABOUT THE FIRST YEAR OF MARRIAGE?
Nick: How natural everything has felt. People always ask how married life is, and truthfully, it isn’t much different than how things have been. We both lived together, so it was easy to be able to adjust to married life.I think if you go into marriage with respect and an understanding of what your partner wants, then there isn’t much of an adjustment period.
Emily: Honestly, how easy and effortless it’s been. That’s not to say there weren’t some hard times, but for the most part it was a really great year for us. So many people say the first year is the hardest, and for us, that wasn’t the case. I think a lot of it has to do with the fact that we’ve known each other for so long and we’re well adjusted to how the other reacts, makes decisions, etc. We also lived together before marriage so that was one less adjustment we had to make!
Q: HOW DO YOU MAKE SURE YOU STILL GET ENOUGH “ALONE TIME” ONCE MARRIED?
Nick: Communication is key. Everyone needs some time to relax and unwind, so it shouldn’t come as a shock when you need a few minutes to yourself. Just make sure you always have a good mix of time together, time with your friends, and time to yourself.
Emily: I think it’s really important to schedule it out, just like you would anything else! Regardless of what you do, whether it’s going to get your nails done or going to play a round of golf, it helps to schedule that time! Taking that time to recharge and provide self-care helps make the relationship work better, too!
Q: HOW DO YOU RESOLVE MAJOR CONFLICTS (FINANCES, FAMILY PLANNING, ETC?)
Nick: Premarital counseling is a must, not because you have issues, but because it gives you the tools to be able to handle any issues that might come up. It also helps to prevent some of these issues from the start, because you are forced to sit down and talk through everything prior to getting married. It was something that Emily and I wanted to do before we got married and we highly recommend it to everyone.
Emily: We’re both on the same page when it comes to most big things, so there hasn’t been much conflict there. Going to premarital counseling before getting married was one of the greatest things and something I highly recommend. We were able to talk about those “sensitive” subjects and make sure we knew where the other stood on certain issues – which helped us go into our marriage feeling like we were on the same team and on the same page about a lot of the unknowns!
Q: DO YOU PLAN TO STAY IN NORTH CAROLINA LONG TERM?
Nick: Yes – I love North Carolina. It is great to be able to travel a couple hours to the mountains or a couple hours to the beach. We also love having four seasons!
Emily: Yes! I was born in North Carolina, have lived here my entire life and have zero plans of moving! Our family is here and we really enjoy our state. There’s so much to do here and I love that we can easily travel to the mountains to the beach in a few hours.
Q: DO YOU WANT KIDS? HOW MANY?
Both: We do want kids! Ideally we would like to have one or two little babies running around some day!
Emily: I know I’ve mentioned this a few times, but for a long time I wasn’t sure if I wanted kids. The entire thing terrified me! We discussed this a lot during premarital counseling and it really helped to put things into perspective and talk me off the ledge. I know I want kids with Nick and it’s something we have talked about a lot in the last few months. I’m not sure when we will start trying. We both want to be a little more prepared both mentally and financially before adding a baby to the mix. We try not to have a big “plan” on when we want to start our family because there are SO many unknowns and neither of us want to be let down if it doesn’t work as planned 🙂
Nick: Yes, we definitely want to have kids at some point, but feel no pressure right now (thankfully!). We’d both like to have two kids – we don’t want to be outnumbered. It’s a tactical decision!
Q: DO YOU WANT ANOTHER PET?
Nick: Yes! We have talked about getting a dog at some point in the future, but right now, Charlie fits our lifestyle purrfectly. See what I did there?
Emily: YES! We really want a Golden Retriever (and may or may not already have a name planned ha!) but we want to wait until we aren’t in an apartment and have more space before bringing another four legged friend into our world. Right now we are so content with our Charlie kitty! Luckily Charlie does well with dogs, so we don’t think it will be a problem when the time comes, but secretly I’m worried about him not being the baby (aka king of our castle) anymore.
Q: WHAT ARE A FEW PLACES YOU WANT TO TRAVEL TOGETHER?
Nick: We have talked about traveling to Italy and Greece. I am not a big traveler, but those are two places that we both want to go and explore. We also want to go to Alaska at some point in the not too distant future.
Emily: My travel list is extensive. There are so many places I want to go with Nick. Nick doesn’t love to travel (really he just hates flying, he enjoys it once he’s there!) but I push him out of his comfort zone on that sometimes. We both have talked about going to Italy and Greece together. We’ve both been to Italy, just not together. We also want to go to Aruba, a few other tropical islands, and travel more throughout the U.S.
Q: WHAT CHORES DO YOU EACH DO AROUND THE HOUSE?
Nick: This sounds absolutely crazy, but I actually enjoy doing the dishes and cleaning up. I can’t stand clutter, so I am constantly cleaning up and moving things around the house. Not saying that Emily leaves shoes throughout the house, but if she did, I would pick them up and put them in the closet. Every. Night.
Emily: We mesh well together when it comes to chores. I don’t like doing the dishes and Nick doesn’t like doing laundry. I’ll admit, I can be a bit messy (especially with packages and shoot days) and I have a lot of “stuff” but Nick is SO patient about it. #blesshim
Q: WHO IS THE BETTER COOK?
Nick: Definitely me, but we both have our specialties. I’m more adventurous when it comes to cooking, while Emily has a few good dishes up her sleeve. We both enjoy cooking so we spend a lot of time together in the kitchen.
Emily: Nick is definitely the better cook! I have always been a really picky eater, so cooking for me has always been a challenge… but I’m working on it! We both really enjoy cooking together and coming up with new dishes. I have been deemed the “breakfast chef” but still love cooking dinner with Nick too!
I have to share this story because I think it’s hilarious. When Nick and I got back together in 2015 I invited him over for dinner and told him I was making a pasta dish. He ended up loving it and raved about it. Once we moved in together we decided to make it again. So we go to the grocery store together and he discovered my secret… that it was a boxed meal that I had just added chicken to hahahaha. It still makes us both laugh! 🙂
Q: WHAT’S YOUR FAVORITE THING TO DO TOGETHER?
Nick: Sounds totally lame, but there’s nothing like drinking wine and playing UNO. By the nature of our jobs, we spend so much time out in public, so it is nice to be able to relax at home together and play a throwback game. It also doesn’t hurt that Emily is awful at UNO.
Emily: I really enjoy us being together, whether we’re cooking, catching up on TV shows, or going out for dinner/drinks. We always have such a good time together that it really doesn’t matter what we’re doing, we know we’re going to have fun!
Q: FAVORITE DATE NIGHT SPOT?
We both loving grabbing dinner and drinks at some of our favorite local spots, including Green Valley Grill, Print Works Bistro & GIA.
Q: WHAT’S ONE FUNNY THING ABOUT THE OTHER THAT MOST PEOPLE DON’T KNOW?
Nick: Emily loves to sing. The wildcard is that she isn’t great with remembering (or knowing) song lyrics, so she makes up her own songs constantly. I think we have about 20 different songs related just to Charlie. I’m not sure he’s a big fan, though…
Emily: How much Nick loves Charlie! Their friendship didn’t start off great, in fact, Nick hated cats and Charlie was very dominate that another male was invading his space with his mom. I remember telling Nick “if you just pretend like you like him, he will ignore you! If he knows that you don’t like him he will want your attention!” Well, that plan obviously backfired. They became fast friends and Charlie all but forgot about me haha! He doesn’t like to admit it, but he loves Charlie. And Charlie loves cuddling with him at night 😉
Thank you so much for following along! I hope you enjoyed reading it as much as we enjoyed coming up with & answering these questions! We’re off to celebrate our anniversary this weekend! xx