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Author Archives: jdtoinfinityandbeyond

About jdtoinfinityandbeyond

I'm on an adventure

99 bottles of…

Today is exactly 99 days until our wedding (according to Bed, Bath, and Beyond anyways)!! A lot of people have been asking how wedding planning is going, so I thought I’d blog about it as a break from planning!

But first, let me share some really fun pictures, all courtesy of Sara Smile Photography (click the link to see her blog entry about us!).

 

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We adventured around downtown Boston a bit with our awesome photographer before making her pizza at our house.

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You can see all of the engagement photos here (look for the bonus “Pizza” section!)

So, wedding planning…this is what we have so far: date, location, caterer, dessert, booze, bartending, supply rental, wedding dress & shoes, best man/woman, flower girl/boy, wedding stage manager, photographer, wedding website, save the dates, registry, mini-moon, and honeymoon flights.

Wow, writing that list made me feel good!

Yesterday we went to do a site visit of the camp and it got me really excited (except for the part where I slipped and fell down the stairs – but good to get all that out now!). I forgot how beautiful it was there, as well as how big! We brought our moms with us, which was a relief to have other people see it and start thinking about all the things we need to think about and do! After we got home, I wrote a detailed list of all the things we need to do – it has now crested 60!! I’ve been grappling with the amount of tangible stuff we need to think about/get/bring – iron/ironing board, board games, center pieces, decorations, lights, bathroom kits, and who knows what else (hopefully my spreadsheets know?!).

Some of the “what we still need to do”: invitations, get officiant, get David’s clothes, Jenny’s jewelry/hair/make up, center pieces and decorations (a lot!), flowers, playlist, wedding rings, marriage license, design ceremony, write vows, cabin assignments, seating charts…ok, I take back the part about feeling good about what’s already done!

We’re definitely going to need to ask friends and family to help us…We just need to get organized to figured out what to ask for help with!

Lastly, the camp is going to be totally awesome. It’s not hotel accommodations, it’s better! It’s not really roughing it – the walls are sealed, there is heat, electricity, plumbing, etc. It’s going to be like a big sleepover with adults, or like being at college, but our family is there too!

Now, back to spreadsheets!

 

 
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Posted by on June 5, 2014 in Marriage/wedding

 

What’s in a Name?

Exactly 6 months from today (basically, exactly to the hour that I’m writing this), my wedding will be coming to a close. It will have been a beautiful day full of emotions, fun, laughing, and special moments. But I’m not writing about my wedding right now. Instead, I’m writing about my name.

For some women, there isn’t a question of if they will change their name or not once they are married – it’s not a decision to be made but more of an obvious of course. For others, some of my friends included, it’s been a decision they’ve wrestled with, basically deciding to just not decide (aka do nothing, as changing your name can be quite a hassle). So, what about me? Will I change my name?

“What’s in a name? That which we call a rose

By any other name would smell as sweet.” – Juliet

Well Juliet, I think there is a lot in a name. For the last 31 years of my life, I have been Jenny Duquette. I am Jenny Duquette. That is who I am, that is my identity, that is who my friends and family and colleagues know me as. My many nicknames come from my name – Dukey, Dukes, jDukes, Sweaty Duquettey, etc. Who is Jenny Marie Norcott? Who is Jenny Marie Duquette-Norcott? Who is Jenny Marie Duquette Norcott? Who is Jenny Duquette Norcott?

I don’t think I can completely drop the Duquette name. It is too much of who I am. Too much of my identity, my pride, my family, my history. I know my identity will change as a married person (a wife!), but I feel like losing my name would make me feel like there was someone that I was and I am no longer. On the flip side, David and I are going to become a family, a unit together. I like the idea of being “The Norcotts” – a family together. For many women, they are their married name identities longer than their maiden names, which seems crazy to me.

So, perhaps we could just become Jenny & David Norquette? I like the ring to that…..

 

 
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Posted by on March 14, 2014 in Marriage/wedding

 

A Great New Adventure

This blog was originally started to chronicle Jenny’s journey of quitting her job, lifestyle design, and seizing new opportunities. It morphed into a travel blog when Jenny & David traveled to Asia & Europe for months at a time. We’ve talked about a lot of great adventures on here and now we’re at the start of a new adventure: we’re engaged!!!!

That’s right, David asked Jenny to marry her yesterday, and she said yes! Here’s what happened:

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From Jenny’s point of view:

We were on a long bike ride on the South Shore, from Wompatuck State Park through Hingham, Scituate, Norwell, Cohasset, and Hull. We stopped at the light house in Scituate to take a break and eat some granola bars. I decided we should get going when David said something like this “I’ve been thinking, I have enjoyed going on all these adventures with you to Spain and Thailand and everywhere else, and I want to go on a lot more adventures with you.”

At this point, he started pulling out a box and I gasped.

He got down on one knee and asked me to marry him (and I gasped again) and said “is this really happening?!” Then I said yes! I put the ring on and stared at him, and about 10 seconds later some ladies walked by and I yelled over “He just asked me to marry him!!!!!”. They came over excited to see the ring and take our picture.

engagement ring & lighthouse

Picture I texted to my sister with no message – boy did she call fast!

Was I expecting it? No, definitely not! We talked last week about getting married and David asked if I had any idea of what kind of ring I might like. I hadn’t the foggiest idea and figured we’d spend a few months browsing. This is a man who is late to everything and a woman who has serious analysis paralysis decision-making problems. He had already gotten the ring when he asked!

David’s point of view:

A few people have asked me if proposing was a difficult thing to do. But the way I see it, I only had to follow a few simple steps:

  1. Get a ring
  2. Ask Jenny’s parents
  3. Get on one knee
  4. Don’t pee my pants

Getting the ring actually was the most difficult part. I spent many weeks going to different jewelers and reading about different stones. Not being much of a traditionalist, I decided to go with a sapphire because it was unique and beautiful. Just like Jenny!

Asking Jenny’s parents wasn’t too hard because they are so great and have always been very welcoming to me. And asking Jenny was even easier because I knew that I loved her and wanted to be with her for the rest of my life. Well maybe it wasn’t that easy, but I knew it would all work out.

Solitaire diamond-cut sapphire – a rare tint of blue mounted onto a platinum ring. For the record, Princess Diana & Kate got sapphires!

After the proposal, we had about another 20 miles of bike riding to talk. We’ve already selected the date, location, dj, photographer, dresses and tuxes, and cake. Just kidding!! We’ll take it as it comes and just enjoy the excitement. We’re not very traditional (hell, we quit our jobs and moved to Thailand for 2 months) so don’t expect us to follow too many traditions.

Random musings:

  • We’re going to have two Moms, both named Dolores/Delores!!!
  • David will get to be an uncle.
  • Jenny will go from grandparentless to having two grandparents (though I wish Memere, Pepere, Vovo,and Vuvu were here for this!)
  • David will have sisters and brother-in-laws for the first time.
  • Jenny will be a big sister for the first time (meaning I can beat up Dan and give him noogies!)
  • We’re excited to begin this new adventure together and look forward to a lifetime of crazy adventures.
 
12 Comments

Posted by on July 23, 2013 in Marriage/wedding

 

What if Money was No Object?

Some food for thought. What would YOU do if money was no object?

While everyone in our society doesn’t have the opportunity to just do what they’d like without regard to money, it’s still something to ponder and reflect on…If you were to die tomorrow, what regrets would you have?

 
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Posted by on January 30, 2013 in Lifestyle Design

 

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My 30th birthday [sigh] was earlier this month. Of course, we had to celebrate it in style, over the course of over a week.

First, we ate cake.

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Triple layered, filled with hazelnut and fresh strawberry whipped cream.

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Then we went with a small group of friends to Giacomo’s in the North End, a highly recommended, always has a line out the door place. Hello butternut squash ravioli. Yum!

David gave me a hand painted picture of a whale, along with a gift cert to go on a whale watch.

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Since traveling is just sort of our thing, we headed to Puerto Rico for a long weekend. Packing up our backpacks and heading to the airport made us feel at home – like we were going back to our old lives. It felt comforting to go back to the simplicity of living out of a backpack and not worrying about much except being on the road.

Complete with bananas growing on our patio!

Complete with bananas growing on our patio!

We stayed in a small studio apartment is a residential area of San Juan, Ocean Park (found through AirBnB). The beach was a block away, and it came with bikes. We were both overwhelmingly happy getting up on a Saturday morning, putting on shorts and a tshirt, hopping on bikes, and cruising around looking at the ocean, so much greenness, and exploring our little neighborhood. There really is no better way to experience a place than on the saddle of a bike.

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If I were to summarize our short three day trip in three words they would be: beach, food, rainforest, and read. That’s pretty much all we did.

While we loved getting around on bikes, we also cruised around in our “little purple car”. We drove the hour southeast from San Juan to “El Yunque”, the only rainforest on “U.S. soil”. We were slightly underwhelmed (paved hike, no animals) but it was still nice to be in the forest. It was very green – and we saw bromeliads growing out the side of the trees – we have a potted one in our apartment.

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We went to a beachside bar to get a pre-dinner drink and appetizer, but due to a miscommunication, ridiculously slow service, and huge appetizers, it turned into dinner. We ended up next to a super friendly (i.e. drunk) guy from Nicaragua (Jorge), and he and David talked for a long time. He was pretty funny, and I think the Nicaraguan tourism council should hire him as an ambassador, as much of the conversation was centered around him telling us how wonderful Nicaragua is.

We ate mofongo relleno (stuffed shrimp mofongo), which is kind of like a cave built out of mashed up plantains filled with shrimp. They were delicious, but we accidentally ordered two, and they cost $19 each!

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Things to know about Puerto Rico: It’s a U.S. territory, so you don’t need a passport and you’re still in the U.S. when you go there (but, it has it’s own unique history). They use dollars and are really well developed, though the driving is a little insane. While Spanish is the first language, nearly everyone speaks English. When I spoke to people in Spanish, they just spoke back to me in English. Lastly, the prices of accomodations, food, and drink are pretty much the same as here in MA.

Thanks to my parents for giving birth to me so I could do all these fun things for my birthday!

 
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Posted by on January 22, 2013 in Travel

 

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Happy New Year – Blog Review

Thank you for visiting the blog and interacting with us in 2012. We’re looking forward to keeping up the blog – continuing themes of sabbatical taking/lifestyle design, goal setting, cooking, and travel.

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2012 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

600 people reached the top of Mt. Everest in 2012. This blog got about 4,100 views in 2012. If every person who reached the top of Mt. Everest viewed this blog, it would have taken 7 years to get that many views.

Click here to see the complete report.

 
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Posted by on December 31, 2012 in Opportunity

 

Feel Like Makin’ Cakes!

This is a post by Jenny.

I’m a huge slacker in that I have about 4 blog entries bouncing around in my head – about my sabbatical, my new job, our Europe trip, pics, yearly goals, etc –  but have yet to leak them onto a keyboard. I’ve gotten swept up in the return to “normal” life. So, those will come someday…

I’ve been indulging my cake making hobby of late! If you’ve been following for a while, you’ll remember the cake I made myself for my 29th birthday.

I made my brother some delicious, though disastrous looking, cupcakes (chocolate with oreo whipped cream filling and butter cream frosting).

For a visual of me making these, picture midnight the day before Thanksgiving and the frosting bag exploding, sending watery frosting all over my mom's kitchen...

For a visual of me making these, picture midnight the day before Thanksgiving and the frosting bag exploding, sending watery frosting all over my mom’s kitchen…

Also made my sister a birthday cake (chocolate with hazelnut whipped cream filling and butter cream frosting), with a lot of help from David’s mom:

cake

At one point while putting the filling into the cake, the “dam” of frosting that holds the filling in broke open and filling started spilling out, with me and David’s mom trying to frantically stop it, with David nearby asking if he should get a straw and suck up the deluge.

Amazingly, it didn't explode when we cut it open!

Amazingly, it didn’t explode when we cut it open!

For Christmas I got a beginner cake making set, colors, pans, and a book. I want to make a lot of cakes to practice but don’t want to eat them, so I hope family and friends are ready to eat a lot of cake. I will take requests!

Lastly, we just booked a four day trip to Puerto Rico for my 30th birthday next month!!! Wahoo, beach here I come!

 
3 Comments

Posted by on December 28, 2012 in Opportunity

 

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