As many of you know, my brother just got married! I definitely consider myself a words person, but I don’t think I’ll ever be able to articulate just how sweet his wedding was. My brother has such a big heart, and he found his true match in his now wife. So it seems inevitable that their wedding would be the sweetest celebration uniting two of the sweetest souls together in marriage. Their wedding was filled with precious moments and cherished time. To say it was perfect will never do it justice. These memories will forever be treasured and held close in all our hearts.
A wedding is a life-changing moment. Ryan and Erin’s wedding was unique in that both families spent the weekend together. While we were obviously excited for the wedding, the whole weekend was filled with life-giving moments. I was reminded, too, of just how dear these times are in our everyday lives as well. So here are a few things to remember to enjoy in our day-to-day comings and goings.
There’s just something to be said about food that you love eating. Let me tell you, last weekend, we ate great food. We had everything from a plethora of snack foods to a chef with amazing skills. In our everyday lives, you don’t have to go to a five star restaurant to get some good eats either. Don’t get me wrong, I love getting dressed up and going to a fancy dinner, but some nights, I want to grab Moe’s on my way home so I can sit on my couch and eat in my jammies! Maybe McDonald’s’ fries are your thing, or maybe you like cooking pasta with a tasty marinara sauce. Regardless of you preference, enjoy some good food more often than every now and then.
I believe that atmosphere affects how we feel sometimes. The house we stayed in had huge windows, gorgeous wood floors, beautiful decor, and breathtaking scenery. Not to mention, the tablescape (courtesy of one of Erin’s sisters) and the flowers (done by Erin’s mom) were amazing. What a reminder of how much a pretty atmosphere does for our souls! Go to restaurants that you like the feel of. If you teach, make your classroom bright and colorful. If you work in a cubicle, create a space that’s as fun as possible. Add picture frames, holiday decorations, or sports trinkets to your cube. Most importantly, make home feel like home. Pick up some flowers to add tangible happiness to your room, and light candles to spread scented perfume through your place. Make it warm, cozy, and inviting. Make it you!
We will all remember Ryan and Erin’s wedding because it was happy, yes, but it was a time filled with such true joy. It was a joy we all felt in our bones. I know if you get down to the nitty gritty there’s a difference in joy and happiness, but a lot of times, I use these terms synonymously. Technically, I think joy is chosen whereas happiness is circumstantial. Happiness is emotionally driven; it comes and goes. You feel it, and then you don’t. It’s fleeting. And though we choose to be joyful, I think sometimes we experience it whether we mean to or not. It’s peaceful. Joy comes when all is well with our hearts. And you feel it deeply, like deep down in your soul. These moments of sincere joy leave an impression on you, and you remember them. Moments of joy don’t have to be limited to milestone events; these moments can be appreciated in our mundane activities if we take the time enough to recognize them. So pay attention in the present, not to the past or future. Acknowledge these moments, and take time to be thankful for them.
Time with People You Care Most About
I thoroughly appreciate quality time with the people who are most important to me. Over the wedding weekend, we were able to do just that. Ryan and Erin’s closest family was together for relaxation, rest, celebration, and fun! And much like the weekend, we can all make time for this even when we aren’t on vacation. Yes, we must be more intentional in making it happen, but time with those we love is life-giving. Those moments allow us to recharge, re-center, and rejoice!
Over the course of the weekend, we had a lot of music played on musical instruments, through speakers, and on a TV in the theater room. (We had a sibling dance party after the ceremony!) When you put two families together that love music as much as we all do, you’re bound to have a lot of musical notes floating around. But even if you don’t play an instrument or really even know that much about music, I’d encourage you to find some that you like! Check out iTunes top charts or surf through the radio stations. Then crank the speakers in the car! Put your earbuds in at work or during your run at the gym. In the words of Victor Hugo, “Music expresses that which cannot be said and on which it is impossible to be silent.”
Photography // Alyssa Joy Photography
Words Spoken in Love
Perhaps my favorite part of the wedding was the brunch after the ceremony. Ok, not really the brunch – although it was beyond excellent! – but the words that everyone shared about Ryan and Erin. We spoke words of love to these two precious people. Let us speak in love each day to one another. Remind the ones you love that you love them and just why that’s so.
And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity.