Category Archives: Love is in the air


written July 26th…

So I am now a Mrs. I’ll be sticking with my own name just to confuse traditionalists!

Yesterday was…. well, since I blew the suspense with my subject, perfect. Unless, of course you are sarcastic and believe that everyone sees the world like you do. In that case it doesn’t sound so great! But it was… It honestly couldn’t have gone any better. Here’s the lowdown:


Running around like headless chickens was not how I wanted to spend my wedding day, but I can’t say that I was surprised. Ian had to go to the dump for a last load of yard waste, pick up coolers, beer, ice… I had to put money in the bank (desperately!), get some hair pins and prescriptions, pick up balloons and run to the craft store for fake flowers, birds and eggs. I had tried to make papier mache flowers for the cake yesterday morning and thought “I’m going to end up killing someone if I keep trying to do these in such a state!” So I chucked the idea and went fake instead. What a relief!

We had no idea what to expect for weather. Earlier in the week there had been reports saying that we were due for 100+ degree days and winds up with up to 50 mph gusts! Then later we had a 30% chance of thunderstorms and we could even see heavy clouds staring us down in the distance. Awesome. (That, by the way, is sarcasm.)

We had people over doing film testing (we had some cinematic friends film with some hoity-toity equipment!), setting up tables, chairs, chandeliers and well-wish origami cranes in the altar/hoopa and flowers.

The altar/hoopa in it's beginning stages

The altar/hoopa in it's beginning stages

My sister and her boyfriend made little fishes and bubbles to go on the fish booth “curtain” and then we didn’t end up using those pieces… Ah well… When we finally took a second to stop the hunger shakes we ate delicious, but hurried, leftovers from one of our many times out . SO MUCH TO DOOOO!!! It was overwhelming.

Finally, after everyone had used our one shower or had gone back to their homes/places where they were staying to clean up I was able to step into the shower myself to hopefully send some stress down the drain and get a breath in the meantime. I still had no idea how I was going to do my hair beyond curly and up. Luckily both (curly and up) were easy and worked well together. My hair was done in about 3 minutes, make-up – perfect, dress (and tricky under garments) – on! I managed to get both sets of toenails painted and one hand before someone started knocking on the door.

Ian joined me in getting ready as he, too,  got a shower and then a little trim, then set out to calm the anxious crowd who oohed and ahhhhed at his swanky, Great Gatsby attire.

While I finished up with my sister’s help a friend put together my bouquet of  Stargazer lillies and baby’s breath. It was gorgeous and exactly what I had wanted!!

The brides fragrant bouquet

The brides fragrant bouquet

On to the next….

Show time:

Finally, I walked out of the stifling bedroom (curtains were closed due to tricky undergarments and the air of surprise) into the house where there were just a few people waiting. Already, I knew that Ian and I were going to be show stoppers! I asked him to get everyone rounded up (people in their seats, parents and sister ready to walk down the aisle) and we headed out the door. I could hear mumbles and oohs and aahs from the crowd, but my mind was still reeling! Did I get this done, oh, I forgot that, is it too late to…. Oh, well.

Heading out to the aisle

Heading out to the aisle

Ian walked down the aisle with a parent on each arm, sitting them in front. I took a deep breath, sister on one arm, father on the other until we reached the seating area where we had to go one by one.

As I was trying to calm myself down I looked at this beautiful place that we had created under the embrace of dozens of old hazelnut trees. It truly was awe inspiring. I didn’t think it would turn out so perfectly. Two or three chairs to a side, gauzy netting framing where we would take our vows and a chandelier over our heads.

People turned to watch as we entered. I came through last. I could smell the earth beneath my feet and the heady, syrupy perfume of the stargazers in my hands. And then I was there, standing next to this handsome young man that wanted to spend his life with me. I could tell he was avoiding looking anyone in the eye for fear of losing it. Me, too.

At the altar, Chris, our friend and officiator, took a second to look at us both and then began…

After Chris’ opening Frank, Ian’s long-time friend and best man, was going to get up to speak, but seeing as how his wife was about to give birth he wasn’t able to join us. He did however send a letter on with a good friend to be read at the wedding. While the letter was full of “geek” information it was a lovely sentiment in the end.

Next, Ian’s parents stood up and said a few words about how happy they were for both of us and how they fully supported our decision to commit to each other.

Mara speaking her heart and getting ready to read

Mara speaking her heart and getting ready to read

My sister was last to stand and say something. She was pretty teary-eyed as she told us how happy she was and how much we mean to her. Then she read a poem by Gary Soto, “Oranges.” Beautiful, beautiful! Without being frilly and overly sentimental the poem did such a wonderful job of showing the quiet beauty that is love and the small (and sometimes big) sacrifices we make for love.

And then, the main event! Our vows.

Ian balked earlier when he saw that I had four pages written and ready to read. I could tell that he felt bad that he had just one. I wasn’t worried about it in the least.

I went first talking about how wonderful Ian was because he’s never manipulated or lied to me. He’s always treated me with respect and I know that I have the freedom to go and do whatever I want and I know he will support me with those decisions and be with me when I come home.

Ian reading his vows

Ian reading his vows

Ian’s vows had a lot of the same sentiments that I had made but that’s because we already have had a sort of unspoken understanding of how we both work separately and together. That’s why we’ve worked so well together these past 6 years.

I knew Chris would do a beautiful job. He has a very sentimental side and I know has the utmost respect for Ian and myself. He described how our love is much like a tree…

Marriage is a tree with real roots and branches. It soaks the sunshine of the best days and it grows outward. It drinks the rain of the storms that are sure to occur and expands its roots and grows stronger. It moves in the winds that life sends us every day, and flows. It stores its energy in a safe place when cold and snow and winter times come, and provides a place to go deep inside for warm solace.



After pronouncing us husband and wife, etc., etc. my father asked if he might say something. He hadn’t wanted to talk during the ceremony because what he wanted to say was lengthy. That embarrassment we all feel about our parents started to poke at me, but it needn’t have, what he had to say was beautiful. He said that he has looked over me and been worried about me for so long. My health has been his topmost concern for years. He shared with everyone a little pair of shoes that he’s kept of mine since I was 3 years old. Now, because of Ian, he feels at peace knowing that Ian will be there for me through whatever may happen. He knows, too, that Ian will keep him informed if anything should happen. We will look after each other in the best and worst of times. It was truly heart felt and if people in the crowd hadn’t been crying before (which I understand everyone was crying) they certainly were then…

Papa giving his blessing

Papa giving his blessing

And so the celebration began!!



Happy (belated) 4th!!

This past weekend I went to the lovely little city of Seattle to visit my sister, meet her new beau, grab a couple of things for the wedding and celebrate the 4th of July, of course.

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I couldn’t have picked a better time to head out of Yakima. Temperatures were supposed to be in the 90s (maybe higher) and since we don’t have air-conditioning heading to low to mid-80 degree weather seemed like the more comfortable option.

So, after being ‘interviewed’ by the beau we managed to go to Lake Washington for a bit of wading and swimming. I don’t think I’ve ever been to the water in Seattle when the weather has been so lovely! Jason has a convertible and we rode with the top down all the way to the lake. It seemed more like an afternoon at the beach, really. The way the sun hit the trees, the way the sky was just the right color of blue and how the air had a bit of salt-water weight to it.

To the beach!

To the beach!

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That evening we went to the store to grab some grub and headed home to make burgers. We were joined by a charming friend of my sister’s and the four of us had a feast while talking of film making, relationships, the Twilight phenomenon and the whole Michael Jackson… well, debacle. At nightfall we opted out of going to some incredibly crowded locales to nestle into the cool basement to watch fireworks on TV. What a show! While it would have been impressive in person it was worth it to not have to deal with all those people and the waiting around and the parking and the traffic to get home… am I getting old?

The next day after pancakes (and a second breakfast for my blood-sugar challenged sister :^( we went to MAC at University Village for a make-over and some suggestions. I was helped by Rick Toth (he gave me his card) and he did an amazing job of matching my skin tones and getting the exact look that I wanted for the wedding. After feeling frazzled about the wedding it was sooooo luxurious to have someone use a make-up brush to put moisturizer on my face! Ahhhhh…..

Afterward we did some more looking around and headed home for ribs! (Man, was there a lot of eating that weekend!)



Archie McPhee was one of the main stops on Sunday for some prizes to go along with our reception games. I’ve never been to a store, I’ve only had their catalogs, and I was a bit amazed by all the STUFF that they had. When I was buying my little finds I asked the guy at the counter how he kept track of it all. He wasn’t too interested in talking and just said something noncommittal about getting used to it or something. Fine. Mara and I sat for a silly photo session in a photo booth and jetted out for tea with a friend.And I headed out not long after.

I’ve been trying to lose a little for the wedding (don’t all brides feel compelled to do that? it’s silly really) and all the weekend’s eating made me want to throw in the towel. I think I’ve given up on trying to lose that little bread loaf that sits just above my belt. Oh well. No one’s really going to care but me. (But if you say anything about me needing to lose a few be prepared to get a bruise or see me start to bawl depending on where we are in the day…)

And by the way, the new beau is pretty awesome… WOOT!

Lovely party

Main Entry: 1show·er
Pronunciation: \ˈshau(-ə)r\
Function: noun
1 a: a fall of rain of short duration b: a similar fall of sleet, hail, or snow
3: a party given by friends who bring gifts often of a particular kind <a bridal shower>
2: to give in abundance <showered her with honors>

Baby shower… bridal shower….. shower shower…. except for the last one I’d never had a “shower” before. What a strange and wonderful, wonderful thing.

My sister, Mara, good friend, Des, and multiple cohorts managed to completely surround me with love yesterday. Mara (the sis) planned and delegated in secrecy, at least from me, so much so that I didn’t even know what time the party began until the 11th hour. I wouldn’t have it any other way. I’m a bit of a slave to surprises! (Good surprises, mind you.)

I had friends visit from out of town as well as local folk. It was a mixed crowd, too! I really see no point to keeping the bride’s celebration and preparations restricted to just the female branch of my social life. Most of my oldest and closest friends are male.

Where's my plate!?!

Where's my plate!?!

There was food of all kinds: fruit, veg, cucumber sandwiches with a secret ingredient that made them perfect tea finger sandwiches, cake (with and without nuts, of course!), crackers and cheese that were cut into little dogs, hearts and duckies, all kinds of things to drink including some fresh mojitos, some pickled asparagus (which disappeared immediately), carrots and salami, devine deviled eggs, Lindt chocolates and an unusual and delicious potato salad. Everything looked so photo ready and beautiful that no one was picking up a spoon or plate! A perfect assortment that left me feeling pleasantly satiated and refreshed.

Cheese anyone?

Cheese anyone?

After getting plates and noshing a bit we moved on to bridal bingo. Mary had put together these fantastic little bingo cards with boxes that said things like: bride, groom, Mimi, Ian, lips, nightie, frying pan (my favorite because I’m thinking of some sort of cartoon where someone gets hit on the head, of course!), apron, honeymoon, etc. Prizes were given out and thanks to Joan playing an extra card for me and filling a line immediately I managed to get some PB M&Ms. Des also shared in her prize by giving me a Jell-O cookbook with some…uh… scrumptious looking treats from the 70s. Shrimp and Jell-O anyone?

We had the traditional ‘make-the-wedding-dress-out-of-toilet-paper’ good time where I edned up looking like a cross between the bride of Frankenstein, a 20s flapper girl and a mummy. If only it would have lasted and not disintegrated as the party went on…

Presents were doled out with a theme: vintage lingerie. I LOVED it! Perfect perfect…. My collection has doubled with some delightful items like an amazingly soft house jacket, a demure and feminine black nightie, some lovely slips, a peach cami, a handkerchief as well as a homemade tote for all my loot, some original Lucy Valderhaug earrings (from the woman herself) and an unusual Vera tube neck scarf. One of my ‘mixed’ guests, whom I’ve known since 1st grade or so, decided that I might do better finding something on my own than by him doing the shopping and graciously offered a bit o’ scratch. D., if it’s ok with you I’m planning on putting that toward my wedding day sandals… Well, unless I find a nice saucy piece of vintage that I must have.

I have to say I was sorry when it was over. I had a perfectly lovely time. It felt strange being the center of attention like that but it was wonderfully nice to have so many good and old friends around that had nothing but love (and some lingerie) to give. Their well wishes have made me feel swaddled in a true energy to be happy. All the hugs, all the smiles, all the private words that say you deserve every good thing that is happening right now… I’m a bit overwhelmed by it.

Thank you so much for the party. Thank you for any kinds words or wishes you’ve said or thought or written down. This is turning into exactly what we wanted – a celebration of love, a coming together of friends and family, a declaration of commitment. It’s hard to not feel like I’m just floating on it all right now. Thank you.