Monday, February 27, 2012

Paper Airplanes and Lemonade

A long time ago, long before I knew him, my husband wrote a birthday poem for a friend. He's quite pleased with it - as he should be, it's very good. He likes to recite it for people on their birthdays. My favorite line from the poem is at the turning point, where the answer to the initial question starts to form:

But maybe happiness is made like paper airplanes or lemonade

I love it because of it's simplicity. It is simple things that can make us profoundly happy. Happiness isn't complicated and we can make it happen in a few easy steps, but we have to choose to take those steps.

Before we were engaged, I knew this line would be part of our wedding. (It was even part of getting engaged.) We hung paper airplanes from the tent rafters and served lemonade. Yellow was our main color accompanied by summery blues and touches of white and pink. And we did it all in 2 months.

We did things a little unconventionally. We had a big party on a Saturday afternoon on the lawn of the church overlooking the Potomac River. Then we got married the following Tuesday afternoon in the LDS (Mormon) temple in Washington, D.C. followed by a ring exchange and a dinner for family and a few close friends at the Mount Vernon Inn near George Washington’s home. 


We had decided to have the events in that order because we wanted the day of our wedding to be quiet and intimate so we could focus on the promises we were making to each other and to God. Members of the LDS church believe that a husband and wife can be sealed, or united, as a family for eternity as they make sacred promises in temples. These promises are also designed to lead us, together, back to God. A temple sealing is a simple ceremony: a bride and groom, their families and close friends, and an officiator in a small, beautiful room. The ceremony is not very long and lots of hugs are given after. Rings may be exchanged in the temple, but it isn't part of the ceremony.


We had a ring exchange at the Mount Vernon Inn for our family and friends who could not join us for the ceremony inside the temple. This part of the day had been planned in my mind for years since I have family members, including my father, that are members of other faiths or have other beliefs. It was a beautiful way to include everyone in the celebration of our marriage. We asked a friend, who is also a bishop in the church, to conduct the ring exchange. He spoke of the promises John and I had made earlier in the day at the temple and shared some thoughts on love and marriage. And then he invited us to exchange rings.


It was a special way to start our new life together with family and friends we love. I think about that day often and how it has changed my life for the better.

Friday, February 17, 2012



(When starting a blog post, I always write "so" as if you and I are in the middle of a conversation and I want to talk about something else OR you and I have run out of things to talk about and I'm doing a mental scan of thoughts that most readily come to the surface of my brain. Usually, I delete it. But today I will leave it there.)

The past couple weeks, thoughts have been rolling around in my head. I have started posts, restarted posts, rewritten posts, questioned posts, deleted posts. I've let my husband read posts, followed by discussion about what is ok to post in this blog-o-mine. I even started a list of topics that I want to write about. Hmmm. And while I wait for words to fit together and properly express what it is I'm feeling/thinking/dreaming, other people write what I've been stuggling to say.

So...Here are some links to things I've been reading/watching/listening to that have inspired me these last couple weeks.

C. Jane Vlog: Recapping the Love Story C.Jane spent the last few posts on the 5 loves of her life. I found them heartwarming and heartbreaking. The last one she writes is about her husband and this video is an interview with him about his reaction to the series. I find their honesty joyous. It's easy to look in from the outside and thing everything is rosey especially when the only way you know a person is through their blog. The insights she learns in her first year of marriage help mine feel a little more normal.
On the topic of happy lives, I found My (Not So) Storybook Life: A Tale of Friendship and Faith on this blog as a giveaway (I try not to enter giveaways). It arrived last night on my doorstep via a creepy knock from the UPS guy. I opened the package and promptly read 60 pages. She cleaverly mixes her literature roll models into modern, everyday experiences with her family and friends.
I've struggled a little lately with the political climate of this country. Why does there have to be extremism and conflict and misunderstanding? In thinking and reading about things, I found these two posts and this talk. I will let them speak for themselves (although I might come back to Sister Beck's talk another time. She's AmAzinG!); they pretty eloquently state some things that I've been feeling.
On a lighter note, my next knitting project is this Grecian Rib Scarf. I can't decide if I like the look or the name more. Wish me luck with those tiny size 5 needles.
I also pin other things I dream about on Pinterest.