About Us

Hello! We are the Hoags: Andrew, Brenda, and Maddie our maltese.
Our blog is called Hoags and Kisses {like hugs and kisses} and I started it after we moved to Texas as a means to keep our families updated on the Hoag happenings. It should come as no surprise that I don't know the first thing about technology and the bloggy world is no different... hence why it has taken me a year and a half to complete the "about us" section. I honestly didn't know how until now :)
So to make a long story even longer, here it goes...
From 2010 -2013 we lived in San Antonio, Texas,
but that is not where our story begins.
Our story starts here, in Pismo Beach, California where we grew up.
Pismo is a vacation destination, nestled on the lovely Central Coast
3 hours north of LA and 4 hours south of San Francisco
It is magical. I know, because I was the Pismo Beach Weather Girl.
I was selected out of all eligible 5 year old girls {which was like 20} 
to ride around in a float for the Clam Festival.
I'm kind of a big deal : )
Moving on...
We grew up in small town America, getting slurpees from the same 7-11, tripping over each other in the same Easter Egg hunts, and boogie boarding the same waves for years. So it's kind of crazy that we didn't actually meet until High School.
Me and Andrew 1999
oh and Tim Davis, the original photo bomber
Yes that is a tiara on my head. Call it a Napoleon Complex, but
it made this thumbelina feel like a princess. Did I mention I was an only child until the age of 7? Referring to myself as "Princess Brenda" was one of the many quirks I had to work out.
Andrew and I met in our Freshman AP English class. We both sat in the front row {nerd alert} and it was love at first sight... said neither of us :)
No, our story took a bit more time to unfold. In 9th and 10th grade we seemed to always get assigned in the same group to work together on class projects. Which I had no qualms about because Andrew was a straight A student and he pretty much carried me through the entire AP program. Thanks honey! Over time we became friends and Andrew became a Christian. This is important because it is his love for Christ that eventually made me fall in love with him.
It wasn't his egg head, I'm just sayin'. 
Andrew was always really nice to me and would walk me to class and carry my books.
And I was oblivious.
Until the day he asked me to go to the Winter Formal Dance with him.
I didn't want to be rude, I mean my grades were on the up and up and having Andrew around was better than google.com. This boy is a smarty pants and I actually liked hanging out with him so off to the dance we went.

This was before I wore 5" platforms, I mean I was like 16 years old... way too young for hoochie heels.
So here we are at this dance, but we can't dance. Which was awkward and funny because there we were: 2 nerds with about a foot and a half in height difference. I think I stood on a chair for one of the slow dances... seriously! It was maybe one of the most uncomfortable first dates in history. Laughable now, but cringe-worthy then.
Luckily, it got better...
3 weeks later, on Valentine's Day, Andrew gave me this letter.
He basically confessed his endless love for me and said that I am the perfect woman and am the Juliet to his Romeo and that he wanted me to have his babies ok, so I embellished a little. In the letter he said he loved me and he wanted to know if I loved him too.
But this letter caught me by surprise... remember, o b l i v i o u s
So I did what any sensible dense sixteen year old would do: I gave the letter to my dad and asked him to help me write a response. Pretty sure the letter I wrote Andrew said something along the lines of "Wow, I'm speechless which never happens! I'm not used to boys showing any interest in me."
... "Let's be friends."
Yes, I fed him the let's be friends line. But it worked. We became friends. Best friends. Then we fell in love and then we got married.
But first, a year later, on March 9, 2001 (after making me watch all 32547 Star Wars and Indiana Jones films, seriously that was a "pre-condition" of his before dating me) Andrew asked me to be his girlfriend and I said YES. I would have to dig up my old diaries to remember if we hugged or kissed or not, but I do remember that we prayed.
And from that very humble beginning our relationship started.
Here we are at our Senior Prom.
I feel I should mention that the Winter Formal our sophomore year and the Prom
our senior year are the only 2 dances we ever went to. It just happens that they're
the only pictures I could easily locate to document that time in our lives.
After we graduated Highschool, we endured a 2 year long distance relationship while Andrew moved to San Diego to study Literature at Point Loma Nazarene University and I stayed in Pismo Beach to study Civil Engineering at Cal Poly State University. To this day I don't know why I picked a CE major, especially without Andrew to carry me through my classes. I credit Calculus C-D and Organic Chemistry with Engineering applications for getting me officially kicked out of college after only 1 year. I went to community college for a year and then transferred down to Point Loma to be with Andrew to major in Fashion Merchandising and Business Administration, my true calling. I am very independent, like I would go to a school just because my boyfriend was there . Ok, so I did.
But seriously, have you seen the campus? Point Loma is like college on a cruise ship. Panoramic ocean views and a fabulous buffet. I referred to the caf as the lido deck on several occasions.
It was well worth the down payment on a house investment in our future.
We had a blast living in San Diego and the case can be made that it is the best city in the world.
Ron Burgundy said so. FACT.
We graduated college in 2006. 
Not too long after that, we got engaged.
 And married
Andrew received his Master's in English from San Diego State in 2008 and I received my Elementary Teaching Credential from there in 2009.
In December 2009 we had our first fur baby. A puppy to be called Mademoiselle CoCo Chanel Bear {Maddie for short}
This was taken just moments after she was born.
Isn't she gorgeous?! I promise she's a dog and not a rat. 
Beauty is in the eye of the beholder... I totally get that now :)
So we did what any sensible pet owners would do...
We had a Puppy Shower!!!
We wrapped her in swaddling clothes and placed her in a dog stroller.
Yes, we are those people.
In our defense we didn't want her to get parvo-virus
so we didn't let her paws touch the ground until she had all her shots.
In July 2010 we moved to Texas for Andrew to get his PhD in English at
the University of Texas at San Antonio.
The Alamo in San Antonio, Texas. It really is that small. That's why they always say "remember the Alamo"
because it's so teeny, you might forget it!
In July 2013 we moved back to San Diego where Andrew is dutifully completing his dissertation and teaching college English classes at PLNU. I teach 5th grade and chronicle those adventures here.

Coronado Island, San Diego
For the last few years we have been trying to have a baby. Unfortunately unexplained infertility has become a part of our story. Here is where I share my heart about all the bumps in the road to starting our family.

Life has not turned out quite how we expected, but one thing is for sure: God has been faithful throughout this whole crazy, fun adventure!


  1. Loooove this!!! And I definitely enlarged the picture of the letter so that I could read it in all its awkward glory!!


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