Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Moving Time

I moved to a new state, so now I'm moving to a new blog host. Blogger has been a good friend to me but one must always move onwards and upwards, so to Wordpress we go.

You can find me here from now on! Hope you like the new digs!

Public Service Announcement

I loved my wedding shoes. I mean, look at them! They are to die, in my humble opinion.


Had I known these shoes existed (and they had matched with my dress in any way, which they clearly do not), I would have had eyes for no other shoes. So, here you go, now you all know they exist and you can all wear them at your wedding or just around town:

You're welcome.

Photos of my shoes by Kyle Hale. Shoes via Polyvore, found thanks to ESB.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Wedding Words

In the last week or so, I have been allll about our wedding pictures. I looked through the full album a million times, I posted them on Facebook, and then looked through those albums a million times, awash in how sparkly and pretty it all looked. 

But before the pictures, lovely as they are, I thought a lot about the beautiful words that our wedding brought us.

The homily about forgiveness and love.

People saying that my dress was so "me."

My mom saying that the ceremony was beautiful and just right for us.

Someone thanking me for being "perfect for my friend Eric."

My brother-in-law's perfect reading of "Union" by Robert Fulgham.

My brother's aforementioned reading.

Eric leaning over to me during the ceremony to tell me I looked pretty. (And I know he didn't watch the Royal Wedding so he wasn't even stealing this move from Prince William). Also, of course, "I, Eric, take you, Natalie..."

My dad saying in his toast that instead of losing a daughter he knew we would grow closer because now we shared the experience of being married and the comfort and happiness that it brings.

My maid of honor saying in her toast that when I talked about Eric I was "full of life."

Words like that fill your soul up with joy.

After the wedding, on Sunday, we had dinner with my dad's side of the family. We sat down after we ate to watch a video that the relatives who couldn't be there had made for us, with congratulations and snippets of advice. This kicked off an impromptu advice session from everyone that was there; from decades-long marriages (and my grandparents' almost 60 year one). We heard that there will be days, months, years, that you have be the one giving, but that it will turn around so that you are the one taking, and not to give up when you are in the giving role. To put your partnership above your children, and that it will be hard to do this. That you will think you married a jerk sometimes, and that's okay. To always respect each other. To never lose your selves as a couple so you don't have to fight to get each other back. To stand by decisions made as a couple, even when you originally opposed them, even when the decision goes south. To keep your sense of humor and be able to laugh at yourself. Also my cousin went and made me tear up by adding in that she hopes to find a love that is like the kind we exude for each other. 

Wendell Berry, author of The Country of Marriage and general bad-ass of the written word, came to my class two semesters ago. He talked a bit about marriage, and how its this great big gamble. I had him sign my book and I told him I agreed with him and I was using his poem in my wedding. I think that marriage is kind of like jumping off a cliff holding hands with somebody. I think what I love most about it is looking into the chasm of everything that life will bring to your future, and not knowing anything about it, and saying, yep, I'll go there with you. I don't know what it's going to be like and I don't know if you will always be the same as the person standing next to me today, but I'm going to be there next to you anyway. The advice of my family could not have summed this up any better. It was clear that many had gone through tough times in marriage, but they were stronger for it, and were so glad to see us beginning our journey down that same road. 

Since he can say it better than I can, I'll now turn it over to Wendell again, with another excerpt from The Country of Marriage:

Sometimes our life reminds me
of a forest in which there is a graceful clearing
and in that opening a house,
an orchard and garden,
comfortable shades, and flowers
red and yellow in the sun, a pattern
made in the light for the light to return to.
The forest is mostly dark, its ways
to be made anew day after day, the dark
richer than the light and more blessed,
provided we stay brave
enough to keep on going in.

Thursday, June 9, 2011


Readers, I married him.*

And if the first two weeks of marriage are any indication, our life will be divided equally between unpacking boxes and purchasing furniture, and laying on the beach and soaking up the sun. 

Or maybe not. 

I have trouble finding the words to talk about our wedding. I smiled from ear to ear through all of it, we danced, we hugged friends and family that, though far-flung across the world, were magically able to appear all in one place for a few fleeting, beautiful hours. 

Mostly, I just feel intensely grateful for it. It seems to me that everything went impossibly well, and that I am the luckiest girl in the world to have such amazing friends and a delightful family that just doubled in size.

Photos and more recaps soon, but for now just: thank you.

*credit to Charlotte Bronte.

Thursday, June 2, 2011


Next week, this kid is deploying to Afghanistan:

That’s my little brother Jackson, my one and only sibling and my very first best friend.  I don’t know if this is true for other sisters, but Jackson has always had a special ability to tug my heartstrings like no one else. For instance, I was Clara in the Nutcracker, which is a big deal for ballerinas. And lots of people came up to me and complimented me afterwards, I’m sure, but what I remember is this little boy in a Christmas sweater looking at me and telling me I was really good.  And even at 13, my heart bust wide open.

So I suppose it makes sense, that the only time I cried on my wedding day was watching my brother do this reading in our ceremony:

Our bond is no little economy based on the exchange 
of my love and work for yours, so much for so much
of an expendable fund. We don’t know what its limits are—
that puts it in the dark. We are more together
than we know, how else could we keep on discovering   
we are more together than we thought?
You are the known way leading always to the unknown,
and you are the known place to which the unknown is always   
leading me back. More blessed in you than I know,   
I possess nothing worthy to give you, nothing   
not belittled by my saying that I possess it.   
Even an hour of love is a moral predicament, a blessing   
a man may be hard up to be worthy of. He can only   
accept it, as a plant accepts from all the bounty of the light   
enough to live, and then accepts the dark,   
passing unencumbered back to the earth, as I   
have fallen time and again from the great strength   
of my desire, helpless, into your arms.

(From The Country of Marriage by Wendell Barry)

Be safe over there little brother.

Monday, May 16, 2011


Just popping in to say that I am still alive.

Graduated last week. Then moved. Getting married on Saturday. General crazy but good times.

Annnnd I'm off again. I'll start posting regularly again once the insanity has subsided. Thanks in advance for sticking with me through the hiatus!

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Details, part II

One of the other little things planned for our wedding that I love is what is going to be on our flower girls' feet:

Tiny, sparkly Toms!

Adorable, right? Totally the flower girls' mom's idea. Future sisters-in-law think alike, apparently.