Marriage, Motherhood

Life Update // Down in the Dumps

Hey friends, Lauren here. I haven’t wanted to post anything, because I’ve been trying to keep this space really upbeat, but I have been feeling anything but upbeat lately. I try to avoid posting when I’m down, because I can get into this slump where all I do is rant and complain; even though getting that out makes me feel better, it isn’t very pleasant or uplifting. But I’m not going to lie… I have finally reached a point where I just want to put my fingers to the keys and let my feelings and thoughts and emotions flow through my fingers, so I can hopefully get on with getting on.

Isn’t it crazy how life can go from one crazy high to one deep low in a matter of moments?

That’s my life. I feel like I am on a rollercoaster that never stops to swap passengers; it’s just me going round and round and I wonder if anyone is coming to stop it or help me escape it.

So much changes when you become an adult and even more so when you get married and even more when you have a baby. I have always wanted to be an adult, a wife, a mom. I felt like adulthood – really middle-aged-hood – was where I belonged. And I like adulthood – paying bills, owning a home, being independent. One of the proudest moments of my life was the day I could officially pay for everything myself – when I finally got to tell my parents that I didn’t need their financial help anymore. What a rush!

So I had the adult stuff down, but being a wife was a whole different game and it was one I wasn’t so good at. Everyone tells you that marriage is hard and that is no joke. Believe them. Believe me when I tell you that marriage is one of the hardest things I have ever done – am doing. Learning to communicate and compromise has been a challenge. I like things my way and I am confident that my way is the best way, so enter my husband into this scenario and well it has been quite the humbling experience.

We still aren’t a perfect couple and we don’t have a perfect marriage, but then we bring a new person to our family. A person who can’t talk and is so completely helpless, but is the most perfect and precious thing you have ever seen. Now I’m thrown into figuring out motherhood. There are days I think I have the mom thing down and then there are days that I wonder why I thought I was mom material. My baby is the most wonderful thing in my life, but sometimes she is the very thing that brings me to tears… and that makes me feel so guilty!

Well it turns out that because I’m not a perfect adult, wife, or mom, I can’t do it by myself, so I go searching for friends; a community if you will. Now it’s no secret (to some of you anyway) that I have issues with myself and with friendships. I have a long frustrating history with relationships and I feel like it is a cycle I can’t break. My “friendships” either expire or never actually develop. It’s hard and it takes a toll on a person, especially a person that is already feeling the pressure of marriage and motherhood… and well, life.

Earlier this year I thought I had found my community. A place to belong. A place to be accepted. A place to be included. A place to be loved. But as the months go by it has been made clear that I was wrong and that adulthood is just like all the other life stages before it. And that depresses me. Turns out this community was just a popularity contest and – shocker! – I am still just one of the plain Jane kids that eats their lunch alone who so desperately wants to be apart of something, but just doesn’t cut it. Whether it’s because I’m not cool enough, pretty enough, confident enough, happy enough, outgoing enough, funny enough, etc. I’ll never know. But even with my history and knowing that friendships just aren’t in the cards for me, I haven’t given up and that makes these situations hurt so much more. Even though I’m older now and I have a life that I’m proud of, I have once again been excluded and forgotten about by people I thought I was friends with. What makes it even worse is that I opened up to them about my friendship history and my insecurity surrounding it.

Now after all of this I just feel like a pathetic loser. I just want them to keep their empty words to themselves. I want them to realize that their words – the I love yous and the I care about yous – mean nothing without actions to back them up. At this moment, I just wish I had never let myself care.

Over the past couple of weeks I have been so stressed out with my new baby, my marriage, my new home, my job, my new body, my confidence, and my self-esteem. I have spent countless hours huddled in my closet or alone in the bath crying; just trying to remember that I have worth, trying to figure out how to juggle all of my responsibilities, and trying to remind myself that I can do it. I love my little family, but boy is all of this a lot to take in. Life is hard, but I know my family is worth the struggle.

If you read all of this, thanks for being there and letting me get all of this off my chest. Sometimes you just need a safe place to go to and for me – that’s y’all (and my closet of course!).

Marriage, Pregnancy, Texas, Travel

Our Simple Babymoon // Fort Worth, TX

Jeremiah and I don’t have a lot of extra funds right now with all of the baby expenses, but I had been hearing about babymoons and really liked the idea of spending some quality time together as a couple before our new addition arrives. At first I had written off planning one, because all the trips I had been seeing were so extravagant and I knew that we could not afford to take a trip like that, but after doing a little bit more research into what a babymoon was actually intended for, I decided to plan one afterall.

We decided to create a simple, one-night, local getaway. Nothing over the top or extreme, but a short and sweet night – away from the pets and the everyday of our own apartment – to a little Airbnb in Fort Worth where we could grab a couple meals, relax, and enjoy each other’s company.

Dinner

After working 8 hours that day, we headed to Fort Worth. Our Airbnb for the night was located a few streets away from Magnolia Ave in the Near Southside district, so we scouted for a dinner spot in that area. We settled on Fort Brewery & Pizza, because honestly that’s what we always go with it. We had actually been to Fort’s before earlier this year and had forgotten how spicy the pizza was as well as how difficult it is to hear each other, sooooo we settled at staring into each other’s eyes for an hour or so before stuffing our faces with the pizza.

Carriage House Apartment

For the evening, we stayed at the cutest little cottage house apartment we found on Airbnb. It was absolutely perfect for our occasion with a cozy vibe that made you want to stay cuddled up and never leave. If you ever need to stay in Fort Worth, I highly recommend it.

It was a snug three-room apartment right over their detached garage. Honestly, I was sold on this place from the bathtub alone, so the first thing we did upon arrival was soak in their beautiful clawfoot tub. I lit some candles that I brought from home and had set up on the tub tray and windowsill while Jeremiah put on a Frank Sinatra record… we are very serious about our baths. Afterward we snuggled up under all the blankets and spent some precious time chatting, relaxing, and you know… 😉 My favorite part was waking up to all of the natural light instead of an alarm clark.

 

 

Breakfast

It wouldn’t be a special Grey trip if we didn’t stop into a local coffee shop, so we spent a little time at Craftwork Coffee Co. We had originally planned to just pop in for one cup of coffee while we researched a local place to eat for breakfast, but turns out I am a bit too picky and nothing sparked my fancy, so we ended up just sharing a scone at Craftwork. And it was surprisingly delightful!! I am normally not a sugary baked goods kind of person, but this blueberry lemon scone was heavenly and I would absolutely go back to eat one again… and again!

 

This trip was perfect for us and I am so glad we did not skip out on a babymoon, because of expectation. Babymoons are for connecting as a couple before you add another to your family and become irritable, sleep-deprived zombies. We created a trip that worked for us and gave us that without spending a lot of money or taking a lot of time. Now we are one weekend romantic trip closer as a couple and eleven weeks closer to welcoming our babe to the family!

Books, Faith, Marriage, Reviews

The Power of a Praying Wife Book Review

[In Simon Cowell’s voice] This was a no for me. Next.

Plot Summary

A “faith-based” self-help book on areas in which you can begin praying for your husband.

What I Thought

I have so many thoughts and feelings about this book, I don’t even know where to begin. I guess I will start with saying: I did not like or enjoy this book, but I read every page. As a young, married woman who is re-establishing her relationship with God and re-rooting her family in faith, I thought this book had potential to aid in this journey and I really wanted to like it.

Before I jump into all the reasons I disliked and disagreed with this book, I’ll mention a few reasons it got a couple stars. The first thing this book was supposed to do was help me to begin praying again. What better a reason to pray than to pray for your husband. This book ultimately helped me to do that by giving me ideas as to what I can pray for to help my husband. One star. The other thing I hoped this book would do is start conversations about faith between me and my family, which it definitely did. We talked about, laughed at, and discussed many of the points and statements made in this book. One star. That is about as far as this book went in aiding me in my journey.

This book missed the mark for me for many reasons, including:

  • lack of biblical backup
  • incorrectly or too literally interpreted some of the biblical backup provided
  • outrageous blanket statements
  • views on how a marriage should look
  • baseless and unbiblical opinions

This book has 31 “chapters” in it, if you can even call them that. The introduction and first chapter have quite a few pages, but all the remaining chapters were three pages or less long. That was concerning to me, because it was basically a page of her personal thoughts on the subject plus a few verses thrown in there for good measure. As you read the remaining chapters, you realize that not much actual biblical study or research went into this information she is providing.

Each chapter has a page at the end with an example prayer and related verses. These prayers are exceedingly over the top and grandeur, but what felt more disappointing was the “power tools” or related verses. There were four to five for every chapter and although they were all related to the same basic topic, they seemed very randomly chosen – as if she just went to her concordance and picked a few verses on the topic she was writing about.

From the very first chapter, I realized that she and I have very different views on what a marriage should look like. She discusses in depth what a woman’s role is in a marriage and it was very troubling to me. I felt that she has not necessarily caught up with the times. She even states:

I don’t care how liberated you are, when you are married there will always be two areas that will ultimately be your responsibility: home and children. Even if you are the only one working and your husband stays home to keep the house and tend the kids, you will be expected to see that the heart of your home is a peaceful sanctuary – a source of contentment, acceptance, rejuvenation, nurturing, rest, and love for your family. On top of this, you will also be expected to be sexually appealing, a good cook, a great mother, and physically, emotionally, and spiritually fit.

I will have to respectfully disagree. During this entire paragraph, she provides no biblical backup to these outrageous statements. I feel like if all that falls on your shoulders as a wife then some expectations need to be reevaluated and discussed between you and your husband. She blatantly states that the man should be in charge of the finances and the woman should be in charge of the home and “trying to reverse that keeps a constant struggle going.” I will respectfully disagree again. In our home, we both contribute to our finances and to our home, but I am ultimately the one who keeps track of our bills and how much money we are to save and spend and it is insulting for someone to say that I am causing a struggle for essentially not keeping my place.

She also spends quite a bit of time talking about how attractive a woman should be to her husband always. She mentions that we should smell good, exercise regularly, eat healthy, dress attractively, and spend time alone with the Lord… and that if our husband falls out of love with us or stops finding us attractive that is our fault for not trying hard enough to please him. This made me want to throw up. Her overwhelming focus on sex is rather annoying. It comes off as if women are supposed to be slaves to their husband sexually and again keep him pleased. She goes as far to say that “for a husband, sex is pure need. His eyes, ears, brain, and emotions get clouded if he doesn’t have that release. He has trouble hearing anything his wife says or see what she needs when that area of his being is neglected.” I asked my husband about this and he laughed saying that his sexual want does not rule his life and that not receiving sex when he wants it does not give him the right to ignore me. In situations where you and your husband are having a disagreement or you are hurt by him, she encourages you to forego communicating your feelings and just have sex… only then will you be able to settle your issues. I respectfully disagree again.

When your husband communicates to you that he [wants to have sex and you don’t], say, “Okay, give me fifteen minutes.” During that time, do something to make yourself feel attractive. For example, take a shower or a relaxing bath. Put on scented body lotion or his favorite perfume. Comb your hair. Wash your face and prepare it with products that make your skin look dewy and fresh. Put on lip gloss and blush. Slip into lingerie you know he finds irresistible… While you’re doing this, pray for God to give you renewed energy, strength, vitality, and a good attitude. Hopefully, when you’re ready, your husband will find your were worth the wait.

Throughout this book, a woman’s desire for sex does not matter. The only thing she focuses on is basically to give it as often as your husband wants, otherwise you are neglecting him. Her encouraging you to get all done up to “make yourself feel better” in order to be a better sex partner is ridiculous. For one, my husband would rather I didn’t put on makeup and for two he doesn’t want to have sex with me if I’m not in the mood. I am not a slave and to him my feelings and opinions matter.

There is one section where she talks about expectations and provides this story about how one night her husband asked her to make a certain dish, so she went out and got the ingredients and spent a lot of time preparing the dish, but when her husband comes home he exclaims that he doesn’t want that dish anymore, he wants something else. She also mentions there are many times he promises to be home for dinner and then just doesn’t show or calls to say he’s eating with his coworkers instead. She then states, “I realized it was healthier for both of us if I rearranged my expectations. From then on, I prepared meals as if only I and the children would be eating them.” I will yet again respectfully disagree. I find this to be an extremely unhealthy solution. Instead, I believe that she should communicate with her husband about how he is disrespecting her and their family, share her feelings about the situation, discuss how they can come to some kind of actual solution, and pray about these situations and this kind of behavior. During this entire paragraph she doesn’t mention prayer at all.

I’ve observed that people who have had actively praying parents seem to find their life’s work early. Their careers may not take off immediately, but they have a sense of purpose and destiny that propels them in the right direction. They don’t live with the frustration and aimlessness that others do. While many parents have an agenda for their children, not enough of them seek out God’s plan for their lives. When a child’s life is left to chance that way, a kind of vocational wandering can result. There is needless floundering, disappointment, doubt, and despair as he tries to carve out a place for himself.

I will yet again respectfully disagree. The above excerpt came from the chapter relating to a man’s work. She basically says that if your husband is not successful or struggled to find purpose it is because his parents did not pray correctly, enough, or at all for him. This is just not true. A person’s success, purpose, or destiny does not fall solely on the parents… I believe praying for your children is important, but not the end all be all. It is ultimately our responsibility to seek God out, pray about his plan for our lives, and listen and react accordingly.

One of my favorite lines from one of the example prayers is, “Help me to never be a wife who talks too much, saying nothing of significance.” Let me just say that I will never ever pray that. This is just more along the lines of changing yourself to please your husband. This is at the end of the chapter on your husband’s inability to listen and pay attention to you. So basically if your husband does not listen to you or care what you have to say, you should pray that God should turn you into a woman who only speaks when necessary. Um no. First of all, significance depends on who is speaking and who is listening. It isn’t black and white. I may be saying something I find very significant, but my husband doesn’t. That doesn’t mean I just shouldn’t say it.

On multiple occasions, she expresses how she considers herself an expert on these topics and that didn’t sit well with me. I researched her biography and as far as I know, she has no schooling for counseling or seminary, so really she’s not an expert. It doesn’t take an expert to encourage friends, family, and strangers to pray. She also is extremely passionate about her “shut up and pray” method. As important and vital as prayer is, I believe that in addition to prayer, you should also communicate with your spouse. I believe God has given us communication as a tool and it is naive to ignore it. This reminds me of the man who was stranded on top of his house in a flood. He prayed for God to save him. A boat came by and offered the man help, but the man refused saying God will save him. A helicopter came by and offered the man help, but the man refused saying God will save him. The man dies and asks God why he didn’t save him. God replies that he provided a boat and a helicopter. That’s how I view communication within a marriage and I don’t believe we shouldn’t utilize it. Your husband can’t even begin to think about changing his ways if he doesn’t know your thoughts, feelings, and needs. So pray and communicate them.

It is revolting how little she believes men are capable of. While I was reading this book, I gathered that men are capable of three things: sex, work, and money. She arranges the chapters in order of what is important to a man. His walk, his faith, and his future are three of the last chapters… ultimately saying that sex, work, and money are more important to a man than his relationship with God. This sickened me. She puts all men under this very sad umbrella. She also says that your husband will more than likely not be praying for you… I feel like she just always assumes that men want it their way and aren’t willing to change if you just talk to them. I don’t know what kind of men she knows, but I’m happy that I am not married to that kind of man.

Overall, I felt that this book was geared toward wives who are in horrible marriages. She focuses tremendously on divorce mentioning it almost every chapter. That doing [insert scenario here] is better than getting a divorce. So maybe this book wasn’t for me, because I am in a very happy, loving, and open marriage with a wonderful man who loves, trusts, and values me. I feel like instead of just encouraging prayer to root and realign your marriage and relationship in God, it was pray for your husband in this situation, so you don’t get a divorce. It also felt like after four paragraphs of her personal opinion, she would throw in a sentence about prayer or a verse very vaguely related to the topic

My Rating: 2 Stars

This book received two stars, because it gave me ideas on how to pray for husband and started conversations about faith within my family, other than that, this book is 201 pages of opinion. I don’t recommend this book to anyone, because I very much disagree with majority of the points and methods she provides and I don’t appreciate the lack of biblical backup provided.

Have you read this book? Do you agree with the points made about marriage?

Let’s be friends on Goodreads!

Marriage, Oregon, Travel

Anniversary Photoshoot // Portland, OR

August 5, 2018 marked Jeremiah and my one year wedding anniversary. It still blows my mind that it has already been a year, but at the same time blows my mind that it has only been a year! We weren’t really planning on doing anything super special to celebrate, but a really cool opportunity presented itself that we just couldn’t pass up.

One day at work, Jeremiah was telling his co-worker about our road trip plans and how we were going to be visiting Portland at the end of July. As it turned out, his co-worker’s sister was a photographer who was also going to be in Portland for those same dates. Long story short, she offered to do a session for us while in Portland! We couldn’t believe our luck… what a cool way to remember both our first anniversary and our trip!

All of the photographs in this post are courtesy of Maggie of MaggShots Photography. If you didn’t know, Jeremiah and I are super awkward when having our pictures taken. We need a lot of direction to look cute and natural in a picture. Maggie was so wonderful to work with and I highly recommend her for your wedding or portrait photography needs! The moments she captured of Jeremiah and I were so perfect that I had a hard time choosing my favorites.

I hope you enjoy my top picks of my hubs and I from the shoot. 🙂

Cathedral Park

 

 

 

Twenty Third Street

 

 

Location Unknown – “Street with a View”

| Lauren

Marriage

One Year of Marriage // Remembering Our Wedding

August 5th 2017 was a day full of love, laughter, family, friends, beauty, and even a few freakouts! One year later, I can still say with absolute certainty that I made the best decision of my life saying ‘I do’ to my very best friend in the whole world! This past year has been a wild ride with amazing days, deep conversations, soul wrenching heartbreaks, gallons of caffeine, buckets of fast food, awesome promotions, and lots of love! After a whole year, you are still exactly where I want to be!

Venue Decor + Wedding Staples

Dress + Shoes + Bouquet

For some brides, the dress is one of the most important parts of the wedding. They are willing to spend countless dollars on a beautiful gown; well… I was not one of those brides. I wanted to look like a modern day princess while staying true to my style, feeling comfortable, and not going broke. I figured it would take lots of hours and many stores to find a dress, BUT it ended up only taking one day and four stores. I thought I knew exactly what I wanted from browsing Pinterest, but when I started trying on dresses in that style, they did not quite fit my petite frame. We were done with all of our appointments and were about to head home when we drove by Sunday’s Bridal. They let us stop in without an appointment. Sunday’s Bridal is an off-the-rack wedding dress store, so nothing is custom made or tailored for you. I figured we wouldn’t find anything, because of my size, but sure enough I found the P E R F E C T dress that looked flawless on me. It was absolutely my dream princess gown.

I paired the dress with a cathedral veil and pink Converse. Converse are one of my trademarks. I typically wear a pair on the daily, so they became one of my wedding must-haves. I chose pink ones to give my attire a pop of color and the whole thing made the outfit feel like me! My bouquet was full of gerbera daisies in colors of pink, magenta, orange, and peach. It was exactly what I pictured! My bouquet also featured a wallet-size picture of my parents on their wedding day serving as my “something old.”

Dress: Sunday’s Bridal

Veil: Sunday’s Bridal

Shoes: Journeys Kidz [I can’t find the exact color, so this is a similar pink.]

Hanger: JavaJanes

Decor

Jeremiah and I were very particular about our venue. We wanted the place we got married to feel like us. I kept researching venues and thinking about how we aren’t farm, barn, warehouse, mansion, or church people. I stumbled upon The Sanford House during my research and wasn’t sure if we were B&B people either, but they had the most beautiful courtyard with flowers, trees, brick and stone pathways, a fountain, and gazebos. I fell in love the second I saw it. It felt like a magical fairytale. Lucky for me, Jeremiah loved it too, so we had found our venue!

The venue was so beautiful that we didn’t feel that we needed to add too much decor. The greenery and fountains were already so wonderful! We decided to use spray painted and glittery wine bottles as vases and showcase the sweet playing cards Jeremiah gave me every day prior to the wedding. We wanted to add a bit more light and magic, so we wrapped the gazebo in string lights and chiffon to give it a sparkly look and feel. The Sanford House provided the tables, chairs, and tablecloths.

Flower Freak Out: On the wedding day I couldn’t sit still, so I went with my mom to pick up the flowers. The flowers were one of the things I was most excited about, because of the colors and gerbera daises are my favorite. We arrived and the vases for some of the tables were all wrong filled with white and hot pink flowers, luckily the bouquets were correct. The flower shop was next to a grocery store, so my mom ran in and grabbed whatever flowers she could find in our color scheme. It is so great how people come to the rescue when it comes to weddings. My bridesmaid Sarah got married two years before and they made their own bouquets, so her mom came to fix our vases. They turned out better than I could have imagined!

Venue: The Sanford House Inn & Spa

Guest Activities

We wanted our guests to have plenty to do before the ceremony, during pictures, and if they didn’t want to dance. So we came up with some things to keep them busy that would also be fun for us. Our guest activities included highlighting favorite Bible verses, leaving us words of wisdom, providing date night ideas, and writing a quick note of hello.

Getting Pretty

The Ladies

The Sanford House provided us with one of their lovely cottages for the wedding day and night. My gals and I set up shop in the cottage to get ready for the big event As I stated above, I wanted to feel like a modern princess, but I wanted to stay true to myself. I opted out of having my makeup done and wearing contacts, so that I would look like me. I did my own makeup [just mascara and lipstick], but a sweet, patient friend did my hair in a simple half up half down style.

Hair Meltdown: I’m not going to lie and act like I was completely composed on my wedding day, I did have a few meltdowns and having my hair styled was one of them. My hairstylist and I had played around with my hair before the wedding and decided on a style, but when the day came, I wasn’t loving it. So much so that I had tears streaming down my cheeks, but the amazing Margaret was so patient with me and talked me through different styles until we reached one that I was super happy with. So thank you Margaret, I adore you and appreciate you!

Shorts: FallenStarCoutureInc

The Gents

With us women occupying the cottage, the men got ready at my childhood home and then had to stay out front of the inn until the ceremony started.

Shirt Fiasco: If you pay attention, Jason wears a different shirt in the first set of pictures and the second set of pictures [white then orange]. Jeremiah and I had give both of his brother’s their shirts before the wedding day, but Jason had been out of town getting in days before the wedding. We completely forgot that we hadn’t given Jason his shirt ahead of time, so it was left at our apartment on the wedding day. The wedding was an hour from where we live, so Jason almost wore a white shirt during the wedding. Jason’s wife ran to Kohl’s and grabbed an orange dress shirt just in time for the ceremony and you couldn’t tell a difference. Luckily, I didn’t know about this until the honeymoon.

First Look

Having a moment with each of my parents before the ceremony was really important to me. I’m their little girl all grown up about to take one of the biggest steps of my life and I wanted to us to have a moment full of happiness and memories. As I anticipated, my mom was very emotional. But I honestly wasn’t sure how my dad was going to react. He and I are close, but we’ve never been all that emotional towards each other. His big smile and goofy personality was exactly what I needed before and while walking down the aisle!

The Wedding Party

Maid of Honor + Bridesmaids

Jeremiah and I were really passionate about having a small wedding party. We wanted each person to have played a special role in our lives. I thought choosing bridesmaids would be super difficult, but I knew I wanted these three ladies by my side! Maid of Honor: Payton – coworkers turned roommates; inseparable since she slid her phone number to me and said “call me sometime.” Bridesmaid: Emily – not too fond of each other back in junior high, but became best friends after competing in mock trial together. Bridesmaid: Sarah: growing closer and closer every year since fourth grade church group; also the smartest and sweetest gal I know!

Dresses: Azazie

*The orange dress in the picture is not from Azazie. She originally bought one, but it was not hemmed correctly, so she bought one from a department store.

Best Man + Groomsmen

Jeremiah’s brothers are his best friends and when we have kids, I hope they are as close as the Grey boys are. Best Man: Joshua – best friends since the womb; twins for life! Groomsman: Owen – too bad he was born first and didn’t make the twin cut. Groomsman: Jason – amazing friend, amazing role model; who cares about blood, he’s family!

Ties: Tux&Tulle

Shirts: J.C. Penny

Pants: Macy’s

Junior Bridesmaids

There was no doubt in my mind that I would have a whole slew of junior bridesmaids. I have a lot of younger cousins that I am so close to and I wanted them to be a part of my big day! Three of them (+ one of the flower girls) flew in from Germany, one came from Kansas, and the other from Virginia. None of these little lovely ladies lived nearby and they all showed up to support me. It was amazing and I can’t wait to support them on their special day! From left to right: Alyssa (cousin, 14*), Bayley (cousin, 16*), Callie (cousin, 11*), Malia (cousin-in-law, 10*), Heaven (cousin, 10*).

*These ages may not be correct lol

Flower Girls + Ring Bearers

Honestly, I think these kiddos stole the show. They were so adorable and took their jobs very seriously! Ring Bearers: Benjamin (cousin, 6*), Cody (family friend, 8*). Flower Girls: Ashley (cousin, 10*), Karis (family friend, 5*).

Bow Tie + Suspenders: BowTieFun

*I may be off on these ages

Making It Official

Here Comes The Bride + Vows

To be honest, I wasn’t even nervous about walking down the aisle or saying ‘I do’, I was more nervous about all of the people staring at me. Making my entrance was so surreal, because I looked and felt like an absolute princess. I feel like I just about ran down the aisle, because I was so ready to be with Jeremiah. Jeremiah and I opted to write our own version of traditional vows as well as a little personal vow to each other.

Washing of the Feet

Jeremiah and I knew early on that we wanted to incorporate washing each other’s feet into our wedding. I love that it symbolized a big part of what marriage is: serving one another. Jeremiah’s mom, Nan, designed and made our foot washing basin and I absolutely adore it! Washing each other’s feet was pretty awkward with my big dress, but the moment was really special though and I wouldn’t have changed anything about it.

Water Waiting: I’m not sure who was tasked with making sure the water pitcher was filled before the ceremony, but sure enough when we sat down to wash each other’s feet, we had no water. The Best Man had to quickly run to the stage, grab the pitcher, and fill it up before we could begin. It gave us a good laugh!

Foot Washing Basin: Nan Grey Designs

The Rings

My engagement ring was just perfect! Jeremiah picked it out all by himself and it fit my personality wonderfully. I was super impressed. Finding a band to match it was a bit more difficult, because I have a particular style and a dainty finger. We went to quite a few stores before discovering Kubes Jewelry in Fort Worth where we found both of our rings. My wedding band is very simple and looks like a robe and Jeremiah’s ring is a simple silver band.

His Wedding Band: Kubes Jewelry

Her Wedding Band: Kubes Jewelry

Her Wedding Ring: First People’s Jewelers

The Kiss + Happy Couple

I was super nervous about kissing in front of all of our friends and family, because I am not about public display of affection, but when Jeremiah took my face in his hands, I melted. It was perfect!

Party Time

First Dance

Jeremiah and I had never really danced together before besides just messing around in the car or at home. Because of lack of money and time, we didn’t take any lessons and just winged it. I’m sure it was pretty horrible to anyone watching, but it was sweet and I enjoyed every second of swaying with my man. Jeremiah and I danced to You’ve Got a Friend in Me by Randy Newman. Yes the song from Toy Story!

Father Daughter Dance

My dad and I are pretty goofy. We aren’t that emotional and we definitely don’t dance, so instead my dad and I had a light saber duel and it was one of the greatest things ever! I know that is a moment he is so proud of and will never forget!

Cutting the Cake

Instead of the traditional two cakes, we decided to go with a little small cake to cut and assorted cupcakes for our guests. We didn’t want to have much cake leftover and the cupcakes seemed to be a huge hit! I think we made the right choice for us.

Crying into the Cake: You can’t really tell, but right before this picture was taken I had been crying. Many of my friends and family had been saying their goodbyes before the reception had really begun and it really flustered me. But luckily my hot husband and some yummy cake cheered me right back up.

Topper: ThePinkOwlDesigns

Toasts

As important as people make toasts out to be, I was so ready to be alone with my new hubby, I don’t remember much that was spoken. Thank you Payton for telling everyone about my Missing Sock flyer! And thank you both for the warm, sweet wishes!

Send Off

I really, really wanted a sparkler send off, but our venue did not allow fire. I was disappointed at first, but the bubbles turned out better than I could have ever imagined! Thank you everyone who stayed and sent us off into our first night Mr. and Mrs. Grey!

 

So that is the story of our wedding. It was an absolutely magical night with twinkly lights, a princess gown, sweet kisses, and wonderful people. Of course it didn’t go completely as planned, but what does? In the end, I became Mrs. Jeremiah Grey and I couldn’t be more happy! Here’s to one year of marriage!!

What is your favorite part of weddings (or your own wedding)?