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Including marriage advice from our own loved ones was one of the most rewarding parts of putting together V6. Even if you’re not writing a magazine, we highly encourage y’all to ask the same question to the married couples you admire that we asked people: what’s your best advice for a successful marriage? Today’s advice comes from our own Emily‘s dad, Rob Ayer, and since he and Emily’s mom celebrated 33 years of marriage on Friday (happy anniversary, Ayers!), there was no better day to share the wise and practical words he shared with us!

When you should meet the other person “halfway,” convince yourself that what you think is 60-40 is actually 50-50. If the other person does the same thing, you’ll actually meet in the middle. Give a little extra. When you’re having a difference of opinion, don’t insist on being “right” or getting the last word. On the other hand, some subjects can’t, and shouldn’t, be put off forever–the two of you need to address them. Be man (or woman) enough to sit down and face up to them. Put things in terms of “I” instead of “you.” As in, “I feel that…” instead of “You always…” When you turn off the light at night, say good night and kiss each other–even if you’re not on the best of terms. Try to start off the next morning with a clean slate–no grudges. Pretend it never happened–and it will be like it never did.

Tanja Lippert

lisa Written with love by Lisa
1 Comment
  1. avatar Emily reply

    Yay! So fun to see these two on here :)

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Y’all, this week has been a whirlwind! Lara and Emily started the week in Birmingham to meet up with our friends at Southern Living and chat about some exciting projects we have on the horizon with them. On Wednesday, Emily and I drove to Charleston for a V7 shoot with the incredible KT Merry and the A Charleston Bride gals, to name a few of the fabulous vendors involved. Now, we’re tying up loose ends for a super fun shoot coming up in Nashville next week. It’s amazing to see how beautifully V7 is coming together–we’ve also accepted nine AMAZING real weddings and are still looking for more. Photographers, we’d love to see your favorite weddings of this year, so be sure to check out our submissions page for information!

See more from this engagement session by Unveiled Radiance on our Facebook page!

In case you missed it this week…

Summer doins is back! Download your checklist here.
You’ll probably recognize him from their beautiful wedding, but now, get to know Emily’s husband John better in the latest Southern Gents post.
We’re hosting a morning meet-up with our local friends! Let us know if you’ll be there in this post.
We shared this casual and fun Kentucky food truck wedding inspiration.
A sweet longtime reader shared her favorite recipes with us in Southern Newlywed.

Katie and Rob met en route to Europe, so their European-style wedding venue was a perfect fit.
Lauren and Casey‘s first dance story melted our hearts–don’t miss it!
Charlotte and Zachary were married at the groom’s family farm in the heart of Texas.

Have a happy weekend!

lisa Written with love by Lisa
1 Comment
  1. avatar Krissy reply

    Hi- I’m writing from I’m krissy, the new digital director, and I’ve been a huge fan of your blog since I worked as an editor at the knot.
    The domino girls have been asking for wedding inspiration, so I’m working on a fun roundup that I would love for you to be a part of. If love to include one of your favorite summer wedding details in a feature. I will link to your site, of course. Let me know if you might want to be a part. Thank you so much!

    Krissy Tiglias
    Digital director

Southern Weddings reserves the right to delete comments which contain profanity or personal attacks or seek to promote a business unrelated to the post.  And remember: a good attitude is like kudzu – it spreads.  We love hearing your kind thoughts!

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One of the biggest reasons we launched Southern Newlywed is because we know so many of our readers come to us before they’re even engaged, follow along as they plan their weddings, and then stick around long after their big days…and we LOVE that! Laura is one of those gals, and she is as sweet and Southern as they come–something you can see clearly in her and Geoff’s beautiful North Carolina wedding that we featured over a year ago! We were delighted when Laura shared some of her newlywed kitchen tips with us, as well as her ten favorite recipes, including a special one from her momma that we can’t wait to try!

By day: I am an administrative assistant for state-wide educational grant and Geoff is a high school history and civics teacher.

How they met: We met in the Single Adult Sunday School class at our church. I was new to the area and was hoping to make some new friends. Happily, Geoff became one of those friends, and over time, my best friend!

Their wedding: We got married on a gorgeous fall day in North Carolina. We had a church ceremony and a tented outdoor reception, and we were surrounded by family and friends who came to celebrate with us. Our day included kettle corn, Cheerwine, and cornhole, it doesn’t get much better than that! Almost two years later, we still remember it as the happiest day of our lives, and I often say to Geoff that I wish we could get married again since we had such a good time on our wedding day. (P.S. See their darling wedding here!)

Meal planning: I do all of the meal planning. I only began consistently meal planning at the beginning of this year, and since doing so, it has made such an impact on our daily lives. We have saved money by not going out to eat as often and I no longer get stressed at 5:00 wondering what I should make. On Sunday afternoons, I sit down and plan out the upcoming week’s meals (I love using my Emily Ley Simplified Planner to do this). I usually choose simple recipes or crockpot meals for weeknights and time-intensive or new recipes for weekends. Do not underestimate the power of meal planning!

The cooking: I do most of the cooking. I have both Italian and Southern roots, so feeding people is one of my love languages :) I really do enjoy cooking and baking, so I don’t mind taking on this responsibility. However, if I am having a busy week at work, Geoff is definitely willing to step in and make dinner for us. I must admit, he makes an excellent spaghetti sauce–it’s even better than my Momma’s (but don’t tell her I said that!).

Favorite meal-related memory: I think some of our favorite meal-related memories have come from introducing each other to our respective family’s food traditions. Geoff’s family always celebrates birthdays with a lunch of “steak and cake,” so after we were married, they had a steak and cake lunch for my birthday, which really made me feel like I had become a part of their family. My family always has Chinese food on Christmas Eve (it’s a long story), and I love having Geoff be a part of that tradition now. We’ve also ​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​started creating some of our own food traditions and we’re looking forward to the memories we will make surrounding those traditions in the years to come.

Top ten favorite recipes:
1. Best Ever Chocolate Chip Cookies: This recipe lives up to its name–it is definitely the best chocolate chip cookie recipe I have found. The secret is to cream the butter and sugar together for at least five minutes. This recipe makes a large batch, so I usually only bake half of the dough at a time, and I freeze the other half for later use.

2. Farfalle with Chicken, Tomatoes, Caramelized Onions, and Goat Cheese: This is an excellent meal to make when you are having friends over and you want to make something a little fancy. It’s a relatively simple recipe, but it looks and tastes like you spent hours on it. Serve it with some crusty bread and a good wine and you are all set.

3. Summer Orzo Pasta Salad: I love this pasta salad–it is light and refreshing, and makes the perfect side to take to summer cookouts or picnics. I’ve already made it three times in the past two months!

4. and 5. Parmesan-Crusted Tilapia and Spicy Honey-Brushed Chicken Thighs: I am always on the hunt for quick and easy weeknight meals. Both of these recipes taste great and are ready in under 30 minutes. They are also my husband’s favorite weeknight meals.

6. Pioneer Woman Black-Eyed Pea Dip: Is there anything better than “game day” food? I don’t think so. This black-eyed pea dip is easy to make and so yummy, it’s always a crowd pleaser during football season. I also make this dip on New Year’s Day so we can make sure we get our fill of black-eyed peas for the new year.

7. Pomegranate Jeweled White Cheddar, Toasted Almond, and Crispy Sage Cheeseball: You can’t get much more Southern than a cheeseball, and this one is delicious. It can be rather time-intensive, but it is a beautiful addition to any holiday buffet.

8. Crunchy Crab Cakes: This is my go-to recipe for date nights at home. It’s a little more special than our usual weeknight dinners, but it’s easy enough to make so that I’m not stuck in the kitchen all evening.

9. Cinnamon Rolls: I’ve tried multiple cinnamon roll recipes and this one is definitely my favorite. It might seem a little intimidating since it is a yeast dough, but believe me when I say that it’s hard to mess up. Even if your dough doesn’t rise like you expect it to, it will still taste great!

10. Blueberry Cream Pie: This is a recipe that was passed down to me by my Momma. It is definitely one of my favorite summer desserts and it is so easy to make. The recipe makes two pies, so keep one and share the other with friends or neighbors.

2 9″ graham cracker pie crusts
8 oz. block of cream cheese (softened)
1 can sweetened condensed milk
1/2 c. lemon juice
1 large container of Cool Whip (thawed)
2 pints of blueberries

Use an electric mixer to whip together softened cream cheese, condensed milk, and lemon juice. Whip until smooth (this may take several minutes). Add thawed Cool Whip and mix in well. Add blueberries (stir in by hand gently so berries stay whole). Pour into pie crusts and chill.

Photography: McDorman Photography

lisa Written with love by Lisa
1 Comment
  1. avatar Julia reply

    What a beautiful post and beautiful pictures. I am so glad you found the Summer Orzo Pasta Salad and like it! :)

Southern Weddings reserves the right to delete comments which contain profanity or personal attacks or seek to promote a business unrelated to the post.  And remember: a good attitude is like kudzu – it spreads.  We love hearing your kind thoughts!

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One of my favorite things about going to college in Austin was the abundance of food trucks, and when I moved to North Carolina last year, I was thrilled to find out that there are plenty of them here as well. Since the food truck scene is growing quickly in Lexington, the talented team of Kentucky vendors behind today’s shoot was inspired to show how this staple of the culinary world in big cities fits in just as well at more rural weddings. Two factors that food trucks all seem to have in common are fantastic, specialized food and passionate, talented chefs–both qualities we love in wedding food and vendors respectively!

Love this shoot? Check out more in their behind-the-scenes video!

Concept Coordination and Styling: Every Last Detail / Florals and Design: Blooms ‘n Blossoms / Photography: Conrhod Zonio / Hair and Makeup: PinkLouLou / Bride’s Gown: Blush by Hayley Paige / Bridal Salon: Twirl / Lettering: Love Lettering / Rentals: Purdon’s / Food trucks: GastroGnomes and Fork In The Road / Cake: Elizabeth Lowry / Videography: Reel Special

lisa Written with love by Lisa
  1. avatar Breanna reply

    The bright colors in the florals are fabulous! So lively and fun. Speaking of a fun touch to a wedding, I love the idea of using a food truck. I never would have thought of something like that! Such a unique detail to incorporate in a wedding. I also think the bride’s denim jacket is adorable. This whole shoot is just so casual and cute.

  2. avatar Hannah reply

    Love the food truck idea! So creative. I also love the naked cake – one of my favorite new trends. I think they are so simple and pretty!

  3. avatar Laurie Garza (Fleurie) reply

    This is beyond cute! Love the whole feel of the wedding inspiration. Great job on the flowers from Jessica of Blooms ‘n Blossoms! So proud of my Kentucky friend!

  4. avatar Jackie Lee / Every Last Detail reply

    Thank you for featuring this inspiration shoot. I’m so honored and excited for the vendor team. This was an effort of love by everyone involved for the desire to support so many small, local businesses. I love how it turned out!!

  5. avatar Henry Zonio reply

    Great idea and amazing colors. Great job on the photography from Conrhod Zonio Photography… and I’m not just saying that because he’s my brother :)

  6. avatar Suzi Hjorth reply

    Great job everyone–terrific idea, wonderful colors, fun style!

  7. avatar Jessica Jones reply

    Thank you for this fabulous feature! I’m feeling incredibly blessed to have my work on Southern Weddings AND work alongside these amazing vendors!

  8. avatar Rachel Wells reply

    Food trucks are so fun! What a colorful & inspiring shoot- awesome display of how perfect they are for weddings. I was dying for a food truck at my own wedding!

  9. avatar Pat Moon reply

    What an interesting idea to use food trucks for wedding food! I could even see them being used for other events as well instead of the typical catering. Thanks for sharing.

Southern Weddings reserves the right to delete comments which contain profanity or personal attacks or seek to promote a business unrelated to the post.  And remember: a good attitude is like kudzu – it spreads.  We love hearing your kind thoughts!

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