Last week I asked you to tell me what you think makes for a happy marriage at 80 years old and the answers were so inspiring! The [randomly chosen] winner of Love Poems is Taryn who said: I’m starting to realize, after only 7 short months of marriage, that we HAVE to find joy in the every. single. day. Whether it’s a silly laugh in the kitchen while unpacking the groceries or 5 minutes on the couch just sitting together… it’s a big, scary world out there and at the end of the day, if we learn to rely on each other to bring JOY and LAUGHTER to our home, we’ll live long and find ourselves still sneaking slobbery kisses when we’re 80! So true. Sometimes a tiny moment of joy together can turn your whole world around. It’s building those little moments of joy into years of laughter and sweet love that I think will get us all to those happy kisses at 80! Taryn, please email us your mailing address and we’ll get your book to you!
So, Ari and I just moved into a new bigger-for-baby house this week. In packing and unpacking boxes of mementos from our last five years of marriage together, I kept replaying the memories that got us there. Through the “better” and “worse”, the little dates, travels, adventures and sweet moments captured in our framed photographs created a marriage. It wasn’t the grand events that stayed in my heart as much as the hike in the Rockies, walking on the Florida shores together, date nights in downtown Chapel Hill, a weekend on a farm in Newnan, a picnic in the park, playing in the North Carolina snow and, among so many others, the spontaneous times we got out of the house to just have an adventure.
It’s so easy to go through the motions. So, break out of them and plan little dates and adventures during your engagement. Just when you find yourself getting into a spat over where Uncle Bob is going to sit at the reception, get outside and get some fresh air! If buttercream vs. fondant has you in a bind, it’s time to do something fun that will remind you of why you are planning this wedding in the first place. Fall in love all over again. Get back to the heart of the wedding and have some fun together!
I was so taken by Katie and Michael’s engagement session, photographed by my good friend Bryan Johnson. Emily wrote this week about how we all love a real engagement session here at SW. Nothing too styled or prepared. Just a couple being themselves – relaxed, happy and authentically joyful – in an environment that tells their unique love story. You can feel the love in these images, shot at Katie’s family farm in Chelsea, Alabama.
What’s so captivating about these photographs is that you forget there is a photographer there taking them. Katie and Michael are just enjoying being in love. Definitely an afternoon I wouldn’t forget.
Erin left this great advice on my last post: A girlfriend at work often says that there’s a difference between the girls who want a wedding and the girls who want a marriage. Exactly! So, my challenge to you this week: stop planning your wedding for just a moment and plan a marriage. Get out and do something fun together!
If fishing isn’t your cup of tea, there are plenty of great Southern activities this season to get you out of wedding stress mode. A few of my favorites this time of year here in the South: strawberry picking, a mini weekend trip to a favorite spot like one of these, hiking, rafting, making jam from said strawberries (yum!)…
…a trip to one of my favorite childhood spots Peach Park (the Chilton County peaches are ripe and perfect right now), making peach ice cream (thanks, mom, for the great article!), a simple picnic complete with some Georgia muscadine wine and hot boiled peanuts…
…an adventurous trip to one of Roadside America’s unique attractions and Southern oddities (just take a look at Georgia’s list!), a simple afternoon on the porch with some sweet tea, horseback riding, BBQ, camping, cornhole….
… and last but certainly not least, when all else fails, get in your bathing suit and crank up the sprinklers just like you did when you were a kid! Trust me, your neighbors will be jealous!
Stop planning for a minute and go have an adventure this week! Linen and floral decisions can wait a few days. Your wedding will be 1000x more enjoyable – and more meaningful – if you spend the time leading up to it falling in love all over again every. single. day.
GIVEAWAY! One lucky couple will get one of my very favorite fab finds from V3, two custom luggage tags from Of The Fountain. How fun are these!?
Perfect for all of your adventures ahead!
TO ENTER: Leave a comment here telling me about your favorite Southern activities. Bonus points if you go do one of them in the next week with your sweetie!
P.S. Congrats to Katie and Michael who were married just a couple weeks ago! Wishing you blessings on your marriage and many more dates on the farm ahead!