Our weekend in Vegas was a weekend well-spent. Cirque du Soleil was insane, (if you aren't a Beatles fan, thiswill convert you... Blackbird has to be a new favorite.) Eating at Senor Frogs deserves an entire post - like I was an 18 year old on Spring Break, (plus the food was amazing!) And sitting by the poolside watching Michael (Max) and Ryan (Austin) re-play the summer Olympics (Ashley and I being score keepers) we really had a blast. We napped, we ate, we dressed up, we talked for hours about politics (Romney'12) and walked around Louis Vuitton, as if we could afford the $410 sunglasses -- we forgot about home and and just had fun with our friends. We could travel anywhere in the world, but that's always good enough for me.
And lets just be honest: the best part about Vegas is the water show in front of the Bellagio.
(PS. Unbroken = Ended up being one of my favorite summer reads. Louis Zamperini's story is unreal.)
I remember in an English class a few years ago, we each had to use one
word to describe one thing. Out of the thousands of words he could have
chosen from, the boy to my left used the word "magic" to describe
Kinfolk magazine is becoming a fast favorite; beautiful and refreshing... Kind of like this time of year, which always goes by so fast.
I saved family for last, because that's what all of this is about. Everything. My mom and my dad, my sister who I love so much. My new family. My new brothers. My grandparents, my aunts, uncles, my faaavorite cousin Merbear. And the feeling that my family isn't some coincidence. That our relationships aren't something that just end with time or distance; we're sealed to one another. How grateful I am for that.
And most, most, most importantly, the most permanent and precious decision I ever made, was and is starting this new family with Max. With the boy who has been my best friend for the last six years, and who will be for the next million more. Such a big decision, yet it was the easiest one I ever made.
Some of the wonderful counsel we were given on our wedding day, was that out of all the titles and callings we have in this life, the only ones we will take with us hereafter are that of mother and father, husband and wife. Of families. I will never forget that. Maybe because I had never heard anything so wonderful, or because I was surrounded by all my family, both immediate and extended; but maybe it's because a part of heaven feels that way, too. I will never forget it.
Tuscanywas perfect; the food was divine, (although honestly, I maybe ate a tenth of everything that night), the trees and glittering twinkle lights were gorgeous, and the intimate setting we were able to have with our close friends and family felt like the best way to have ended such a special and significant day in both mine and Max's life.
Before you get married, everyone tells you that not everything will be perfect the day you get married, and maybe it was because I could hardly pay attention to anything but Max, but truly, everything was perfect. When you're surrounded by your closest friends and family, and you're eating really good food, (and wearing a really pretty dress,) and the string quartet is playing something from the Sound of Music -- well, that was perfect enough for me.
The marriage book :)
The morning of,
The detail shots are some of my favorite, because truth be told, I hardly paid any attention to them at all. Months and months of planning, and you'd think I would better appreciate all the hard work that went into that day! But I have to be honest and say that I didn't, and really, I wouldn't have had it any other way. Thank goodness we have these pictures at least, because everything from the Vera Wang gown to the peony boquet turned out lovely.
I really liked what Brittanyquoted on her blog the other day, because it fits so perfectly well with the way I feel: You can never make new old friends.
I've talked about them before, and I'll talk about them again. Most of these people knew me and Max before we even dated. Most of these people heard about our first date (six years ago) the day after it happened, or were there to witness it themselves. They were the ones taking me to Wendys the night Max left on his mission, so I would eat a frosty instead of cry. They were there the day he got home, when I was so nervous I really almost threw up.
Words will never be enough for how grateful I am for this group of friends, because in so many ways, I am so much of me because of them. Their influence and example, their jokes, and their quirks, their secrets and their stories. Letting me feel and be a part of an amazing group of people.
Walking out of the temple and seeing the familiar and happy faces of so many extraordinary friends, made everything about our wedding day even better.