Tag Archives: wedding

JAMIE’S BLOG – YEAR 8 – DAY 179 :: joyous occasions

28 Jun
{first anniversary}

It’s hard to believe our pop up, surprise wedding was a year ago today. And boy what a day that was!

A mere year ago. Seems like yesterday in so many ways, and already a decade ago in others. Tonight we celebrate not by looking back but by looking forward. We have a new adventure in the works – including a move to Boston.

Hello Beantown, here we come.

More to share soon on that one, but on a night like tonight, I am excited about the playbook of adventures we call “married life” and our promise we made to each other a year ago, to be the adventure of a lifetime for each other.

Joy is certainly keeping the adventure going… and I know we have even more joy ahead.

May joy be your guidepost.

More tomorrow…



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JAMIE’S BLOG – YEAR 8 – DAY 166 :: joy is getting together

15 Jun
{again and again}

We have gathered. We have eaten. We have driven the coast, shopped at outlets, and seen the sights. We have gathered. We have hugged. We are here in Maine for a beloved wedding and I am thinking about the importance of “unions” and “reunions.”

Uniting. Reuniting. That is the process of a wedding, of family gathering and regathering. There is so much hope, love, memories, laughter and, love in the air. And, I think this is pure joy emanating from the love we all have for the bride and groom.


It reminds me that joy is found in getting together, again and again, and again.
Shared moments. New memories. Old stories. New beginnings.

More tomorrow…



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JAMIE’S BLOG – YEAR 7 – KINDNESS  DAY 240 :: two months

28 Aug

Kind memories.

It was just two months ago today… and tonight I am taking in the memories. And take out! We celebrated our two month anniversary with Thai food and a movie.

Kindness comes in many forms – and celebrating the little anniversaries of life is one of them… even two months.

More tomorrow….


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 JAMIE’S BLOG – YEAR 7 – KINDNESS  DAY 164 :: the kindness of henna

5 Jul


I was asked to explain the henna on my foot and why and what and how it came to be (so I will!). It’s a kind story, really. It’s also a traditional wedding blessing, which we found out on the afternoon of my wedding.

Here’s a little bit taken from Wikipedia:

Henna is a dye prepared from the plant Lawsonia inermis, also known as hina, the henna tree, the mignonette tree, and the Egyptian privet,[1] the sole species of the Lawsonia genus.

Henna was regarded as having Barakah (“blessings”), and was applied for luck as well as joy and beauty.[15]Brides typically had the most henna, and the most complex patterns, to support their greatest joy, and wishes for luck.

On the day of our wedding, just as ominous black clouds circled the sky and raindrops began to pour, Jill took me into Estes Park to pick up the cupcakes for the dessert table and to cool my nerves. Our surprise wedding was spinning out of control, while we were trying to plan the surprise day with an outdoor wedding, without anyone knowing…. and it began to rain.

I was a nervous wreck. So Jill took me to the little shop that advertised henna in the window. On the way, I promised her I would not fall apart despite the rain clouds, despite the night we had spent in the ER just hours before.

When we arrived, the beautiful woman at the counter told us that henna was her culture’s traditional wedding day activity. It was a blessing.

I looked nervously at the rain outside the window and she smiled back at me. “Don’t worry dear, the rain will pass, you are here for your blessing.”

I smiled, sort of. The inside of my stomach turned as the rain fell.

She painted the beautiful lines on my foot and I watched the little henna jar form a delicate pattern. She looked up at me and smiled. “We also do this on the wedding day to calm the nerves.”

Then she asked for Justin’s first name so that she could hide his initial in the pattern on my foot. “If the groom finds his initial on the wedding night, he is your true love.” She informed me. I smiled, thinking Justin would love the challenge ahead of him.

As we checked out, Jill explained our surprise wedding and the woman behind the counter asked us to wait. She walked out to the store, picked up a delicate pearl bracelet and placed it on my wrist.

“In my culture, the blessing is the gift.” She smiled, as she looked right into my heart. I looked into her eyes and the tears ran from mine. Then I cried. Heavy, hard tears.

The white pearls matched the bracelets I had laid out to wear later that day. She couldn’t have known that I had bracelets made from the broken necklace of my mother’s to wear that day. But there she was, placing a beautiful white pearl bracelet on my wrist that matched the ones that would be placed there within a few hours.

As we left the store, I cried. The sun shone. The rain dried.

And the henna on my foot hid the initial that Justin would find later that night. In so many ways, everything went right. And what we learned most was this: to trust. To let go and give in to the current of life.

We also learned this: sometimes plans are bigger than the ones we make for ourselves. And more kind than we can imagine.

And that… is the story of henna.

More tomorrow….


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JAMIE’S BLOG – YEAR 7 – KINDNESS  DAY 160 :: forever and always

1 Jul


We are home, after a week of family, food, and so much fun. Horseback riding, white water rafting, Rocky Mountain hiking. It’s been a strong reminder that love is kind and family is rooted in deep connection.

It’s also a relief.

It’s been so hard for me this year to blog and report on my deep feelings and realizations of kindness, with our secret wedding plans in the background. Yet, it has been SO worth it. To marry the man that has stood by my side through thick and thin, and good and bad, sickness and health, has been an entirely eye-opening lesson in kindness.

And now here we are, husband and wife.
How kind.

More tomorrow….

{acts of kindness}

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JAMIE’S BLOG – YEAR 7 – KINDNESS  DAY 157 :: the best part

29 Jun

Keeping Secrets.

Tonight we were married. It was a surprise, at Justin’s family reunion in Estes Park. We’ve been planning for a while now and tonight it happened.

Pictures will be shared tomorrow.

For now, we are happy and soaking in the kindness of a family that engulfed us in love while we surprised them with nuptials.

Secrets are hard.
But…Love is kind.

More tomorrow….


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Day 251: these boots were made for walking

8 Sep

Pup had the right idea — hiding under a blanket for most of the day.

It was that kind of day; a wet, muddy, windy, lightning, thundering-so-loud-it-shook-the-windows, icky sort of day.

I don’t know if we can call it Fall yet, but I do know one thing we can call it: a boots day.

If you know me, you know this:
I hate being cold. I hate being wet.
But, I love my boots because they keep me warm and dry.

I was thinking a lot about boots today, on one part, realizing how much I adore my pink and green plaid rain boots, (that are logging more miles than ever since I can’t buy another pair!) especially on a soaking day like this.

There is another pair of boots I adore even more.
These other boots were made for walking — walking down the aisle. 

I just shipped off our wedding gift to Kelley and Brad.  As we looked over their wedding registry we decided to opt-out and go in a different direction.  Instead of china or kitchenware, in lieu of linens or luggage, we sent a photo.

The photo so uniquely captured a picture of love, honor and respect, that we couldn’t resist immortalizing it forever.

On the day of their wedding, Kelley and Brad both wore boots.
Kelley’s dress hid the boots well, I didn’t notice them until they rode the lift down the mountain to the reception site, and only then because they peeked out from underneath her dress while on the chair lift.

It was perfect choice of attire for a mountaintop wedding.
Well done.  Well matched.  Nice touch.

It was even more fitting when I found out they were Cindie’s boots.
While we lost Cindie long before the wedding plans were in place, and while Cindie couldn’t be at the wedding in person, and while I know Cindie was in all of our hearts on that day — I’m so glad Kelley made sure a little part of Cindie made it to the wedding — and the chair life, and the reception, and the dance floor, and in the photos.

It was a little nod, and a beautiful way to honor Cindie’s eternal presence.
Because we all know she was there, even if we couldn’t see her.

If nothing else, those boots were made for walking.
And, I know Cindie was there, every step of the way.
That’s just what mother’s do.

Day 211: on top of the world

30 Jul

It’s wedding day around here.
And, while it is customary for the bride and groom to be on top of the world on this special day, the rest of us will soon be too.

Well, technically, we will be on top of a ski mountain, one that requires a chair lift to transport each of us to the summit and the ceremony.

The big, pressing question over the last few days has been: what are you wearing?

For the women at least, there has been much discussion about shoes and attire. It’s a survey of sorts, being passed around like hors d’oeuvres:

Heels or flats?
Pants or dress?
Strapless or sleeveless?

Add a weather forecast of 90 degrees and this becomes even more interesting.

So, this afternoon we wedding goers did what girls do best:  laid out all of the options to debate the pros and cons of each dress.  It’s great fun, I must admit.  It’s like playing dress-up, or pretending to shop, or something in between.

As for me:

The old Jamie, would have spent two days, if not two weeks, figuring out what dress to wear, what shoes to buy, what jewelry to match.  The new Jamie, at least the 211 days into her promise Jamie, has learned how to make due, be a little more creative than just swiping her credit card for a new outfit in a moment of confusion, and, she is certainly honing her re-purposing skills with what’s already in her closet.

There is just one problem.
Dropping my sugar addiction has also allowed me to lose something else.
My already-less-endowed endowment. (And, I’m not talking about finances here.)

So strapless is out.
I really wanted to wear my totally adorable turquoise and white striped strapless number. It’s a perfect fit for a summer wedding. It’s cool and fun and totally design worthy. But, I don’t trust it’s ability to stay in place, especially with my butt placed on a chair lift 2,006 feet about sea level.

So my long, chocolate-brown cotton dress will do.  It will be cool enough, long enough, and just right enough for the occasion (and, the only chocolate this girl will have today!)

It’s almost perfect, except for one thing.
It is cut a bit too low for me now.  But, I have a solution.  A strapless tank top will now replace any cleavage that once stood in its place.  And, that’s okay. Because the new Jamie is learning to go with the flow.  Or, lack thereof.

Oh, and bike shorts!
I plan to wear bike shorts underneath.  At least until I get to the top of the mountain.

Oh, yes, and flip flops!
I will be toting both heels and flip flops.  Just in case.

And that’s enough.  Actually, it’s just right.
Because, if there is one thing I am learning this year, it is this: I already have what I need.

And, whether it is strapless, sleeveless, long, short, hemmed, lace, cotton or sequined — there is only one dress that matters on this day.

The one the bride is wearing.
For, it is her moment, to be, on top of the world.

Day 187: a second hand story

6 Jul

I went to the second-hand store today.

The name always escapes me.  I usually refer to it as “The Chicken Place” and then Justin usually looks at me confused and clarifies, “What chicken place?”

Then I say something like “you know the second-hand store” and he asks back, “St. Vincent de Paul?” and then I get frustrated and say, “No, you know, the one with the chicken on it.”

Believe it or not we are always talking about the same place: Chicken Alley Thrift Shop

I stopped in today and I don’t really know why, maybe to experience what is most definitely the best place to find a “second-hand find” on the island.  You never know what you might spot.  Not that I’m buying anything.  (And I didn’t buy anything, promise.)

But, it’s always a field trip of sorts looking through someone’s old stuff which sometimes isn’t always old.  And then of course sometimes it’s just people’s real junk.  But at “The Chicken Place” it’s always an adventure.

Today I watched three women swoon over wedding gowns hanging on a rack.  I thought they were very old looking gowns and not all that young looking women …it made me wonder what all the hype was about.

I had just heard some old school Soul Asylum music in my car and the lyrics repeated through my head — Nothing attracts a crowd like a crowd  —  as the women hovered.  Just what was this all about?  Was this some vintage couture find?  That is totally a possibility at “The Chicken Place” so I had to walk over and inspect.

One gown was really old and delicately laced, another gown was definitely from the 70’s (at least it looks like something from my mother’s old photo albums with long bell-shaped sleeves) while another gown was relatively new sporting its Filene’s Basement price tag.

I still don’t know what the hubbub was all about. But it got me thinking…
Who wore these gowns?  What were these women like?  Why did one still have tags?  Was an island wedding canceled and the gown never worn?

And that made me think of golf clubs.
Yes, that’s right, golf clubs.  I donated my golf clubs to Goodwill last fall.  They were old.  I had them since high school, and decided they were taking up too much room in my nomadic trek from the island to Florida and back again.  Plus, Justin bequeathed an extra set of his clubs to me, which are newer and longer and a better fit.  So I did what any conscientious American girl would do — DONATE!

When I shared this with my dad he almost choked.
Turns out those golf clubs were his before they were mine.  They were in fact old, but he informed me that they were by all accounts vintage.

I had no idea.  I donated them in a mad rush to get rid of “stuff” — not realizing I was handing over one of my familial hand-me-downs.

I hope the young soul who picks up my donated bag of golf clubs knows how much effort was put into each shank, birdie, pull, and push ~ both from my dad and me.  The new owner of these clubs may not know their second-hand score is really a third-hand find.

Just as that white sequined dress with the price tag hangs in Chicken Alley awaiting the day it never got to see, its very own wedding day, may the new owner of my golf clubs do something I was never able to…

Score a hole-in-one.
Which may be just as amazing as a couture find at The Chicken Place.

Day 119: f*ing friday :: fairytale

29 Apr

Today continues the weekly series, F*ing Fridays, which will coincidentally occur on Friday. I mentioned some of my favorite F words back on Day 5, including: Fearless, Fabulous, Fine, Fun, Faith, Freedom, Forgiveness, to name a Few.

Last week I dove into the word Forward.

Today’s F*ing Friday is dedicated to the word:

As in, storybook moments.

On this day, the world celebrated the marriage of Will and Kate, forevermore the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge.

I did too.
Alarm set off and festivities promptly kicked off at 4 AM. So British of me to be on time!

Of course, all I had to do was roll out of bed and plop myself on the couch. The hardest part was finding the right buttons on the remote to turn on the TV in the dark.

It was totally worth it.
How often do we get to see a girl (who isn’t a cartoon image) become a princess?

I remember watching the wedding of Princess Diana, almost thirty years ago. The excitement! The fascination! That beautiful princess walking down the aisle with her very long train. I was only seven, but it has stayed with me ever since.

These moments become blazoned upon hearts and minds for a lifetime, like folklore and fairytales.

Because who doesn’t love a fairytale?

But, I also believe it doesn’t take a wedding to create storybook moments.

To be the writer, illustrator and producer of our very own fairytale. That is the stuff dreams are made of.

As in, don’t wait to kiss a frog,  find a charmer to locate missing slippers, let alone kick off the day that begins the rest of your life.

Begin now.

I say, be the queen or king of your own destiny and dreams.

Believe me, I love a good wedding!  I adored the play-by-play nuptials of  Prince William and the celebration of the Royal Family’s newest princess. The dress! The lace! The Queen in yellow! The kiss! The second kiss!

It’s a great story.

But, let’s face it. Even the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge will eventually have to check email, find something for dinner, and attend to the realities of their version of real life. And, that’s where the fairytale really begins.

So, here’s to your very own fairytale, whatever it may be.
May you have the storybook moments you dream of, and more!

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