Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Dream Wedding: The Flowers

Chris and my wedding really was a dream wedding... the most beautiful, perfect wedding that has ever been -- every bride is allowed to think that, right?

I wanted our wedding to be elegant, beautiful, classic, timeless.

For the colors, I wanted black, silver/grey, and purple with a dark red and light pink accents.

Also, I saw bouquets like these in a magazine before the wedding, and I loved the idea of the contrast between the bride's bouquet and the bridesmaids' bouquets.

Here are some fun pictures involving the flowers:

 These Bride and Groom flower people stood outside the doors of our reception to welcome the guests

I really have no idea how to get my photos to go where I want them to go in the order I want them since blogger changed its way of uploading.  It makes blogging a lot more frustrating and less enjoyable.
Nevertheless, I hope you enjoyed a peek at our flowers.
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Thursday, August 25, 2011

Saying Hey!

August 25th!

It is crazy for me to think that just two months ago I became Chris' wife.  It feels like no time at all and it feels like much more time.
To celebrate tonight, Chris has an open house for his students at school, and then I'll be making him a special dinner.  Special, because its one of his favorite meals and special because I have never made it before.  Okay, let's be honest here... this could be a recipe for disaster!

I haven't told Chris what I'm making, but I will be drawing inspiration from The Pioneer Woman and her cookbook.  I'll let you know how it goes.
Also, I just wanted you to feel free to say "Hey" when you read my blog posts.  I have a fun little blog counter at the bottom, so I know people have found our new URL and they're stopping by (quite a few of you are)... Feel free to say "Hey", leave a comment, or become a follower.  :-D

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Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Vocabulary Adjustments -- My Husband

What phrases in your life have taken some getting used to?

  • I never had to adjust to saying "my brother" or "my sister", as I was the youngest...
  • My parents both stayed together throughout my life (Praise God, and Great Job, Momma and Daddy!), so I never had to adjust to saying "My step-dad", or "My parents are divorced."
  • I remember, when a young man asked to be my very first boyfriend in high school, it was a BIG adjustment for me to call someone my "boyfriend" and to think of myself as his "girlfriend" (oh, memories...)
  • Probably the biggest adjustment to my vocabulary was when I got my cat, Lexie, and it was a new thing for me to refer to my kitten, and then to remember her name... I would say "Lexie" unnecessarily because it was such an adjustment for me to be talking to a kitten in my small studio apartment in grad school and I was trying to get used to it...
Getting used to saying the words, "My Husband" and "Brooke Miller" has been the greatest and biggest and BEST adjustment of my life!  I am used to it... in that I don't accidentally call Chris my fiance' anymore (like I accidentally did a few times on our honeymoon)... but I notice "husband" every time I say it.  Just like I notice every time I introduce myself as Brooke Miller.  

Chris still isn't even used to my new name.  The other day he was trying to get me to say that I prefer a cold house to a hot house, and he said, "Repeat after me.  'I, Brooke Sanden,'" ... it took a little while for both of us to realize that he didn't actually say my correct name during that vow.

Just like with my kitten, I say "Hubby" and "Husband" more often than necessary because it is just such a GREAT change!  I call Chris, "Hubby" as often as I call him, "Chris", and I greatly enjoy saying, "My husband" in a conversation more than, "Chris".  :-D

I wonder if becoming a parent and gaining the title of "Mom" will be as big of a vocabulary adjustment as it has been becoming "Wife"?

How do you handle adjustments in life?

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Sunday, August 21, 2011

Wedding Events: Friday Rehearsal Dinner

Our rehearsal dinner was a wonderful event!

The dinner was hosted by Chris' parents at my parents' home.  It was such an opportunity for our parents (ALL of our parents -- all four) to work together on this event.  Chris' parents did everything, but it was at my parents' home, so there was some great bonding time in the preparation and clean-up!  :-D
It was a beautiful evening and a great chance to visit with friends that had traveled hundreds and, in some cases, over one thousand miles to celebrate our wedding.
 We invited more people than just the wedding party because so many people traveled from far and wide.  All in all, we had about 75 friends and family.
 My dad's good friend from college, Dr. Harry Lawrence, came all the way from Lookout Mountain, Georgia to attend our wedding with his daughter Brooke (after whom I was named -- not in the picture).
Dr. Lawrence is an ophthalmologist and an Episcopalian minister and his family had been very good friends of my dad's for over 50 years.  Dr. Lawrence offered a beautiful prayer over our rehearsal dinner.  He is the one reading his prayer and my parents are next to him.
 My parents' property was the perfect place!
 These are most of my college friends in town for the rehearsal dinner.  Most are involved in the wedding, and ALL traveled FAR and WIDE to attend our wedding.  We have TREMENDOUS pride in our school and a very close bond as alumni.  We are from Washington and Lee University!
 A view under the tent
 The food was catered by Carinos' and was delicious (light on the garlic) :-D
My Aunt and Uncle gave Chris and me a rehearsal dinner present -- A Guide to American Ballparks.  Chris and I spent last summer visiting 18 ballparks, and we plan to make it to all 30 in the next few years.
 Chris gave a toast at the wedding and so I gave a toast at the rehearsal dinner.  I remember two things about our first date:
  1. I admired his truck and he said that he was really planning for a family when he opted for the four doors.  His truck will be great for car seats, he said.
  2. When he prayed over our dinner he said, "Lord, we give you all the praise for what you're going to do here."  I remember thinking, "What's He going to do?  Do you know something I don't?  What's God going to do here?"
I relayed there memories and talked about how Chris' prayer really set the tone for our relationship.  I also accidentally made a comment about our tying the noose, and immediately caught my slip and said, "I mean knot.  We're tying the knot!"  It was pretty funny.
 My two nephews were in our wedding as "Flag Bearers".  Here I am with the two boys while they are opening the presents Chris and I got them for their participation.  My brother (their dad) is also in the picture.
This is the daughter of one of my bridesmaids and just the most adorable little girl on the planet.  I don't have any kiddos yet, so I can really honestly make this statement about little Remington Lee.

After the rehearsal dinner was one of my favorite memories from the wedding weekend.  All of the young people (W&L friends, wedding party, out of town friends) came in my parents' house and just hung out for another hour or more.  Chris and I were both exhausted, so Chris went back to the hotel but I had some precious memories with friends after the rehearsal dinner.
There was only a few pictures taken of this hangout time... like nearly none, but in the above picture, Chris and I are facing a family room FULL of young people.  People were all over the couch, in every chair, on the floor and just hanging out.

I changed into more comfortable clothes and was fighting a headache.  A DEAR DEAR friend, Leah, rubbed my shoulders and pet my hair while I was visiting with friends which just felt amazing.  When I thanked her as she was leaving, she gave me a hug and said, "I was so hoping I would be able to do that for you tonight."  What an amazing friend and such a loving heart!"

We didn't linger late into the night because we had a big day the next day -- including an early morning running race.  Before we parted ways, however, we prayed as a group (popcorn prayer for anyone who wanted to speak).  I can't even express what a meaningful time this was to pray with this group of friends, some of whom knew each other, some of whom hardly knew anyone other than me, but completely united in prayer.

I don't remember all that was said, but I remember how touched I was that Chris' brother (our best man, and now my brother) prayed out loud.  It was very meaningful to hear his heart on this eve of his brother's wedding.  My amazing maid of honor prayed, along with several friends I hadn't seen in years. 

Also, my dear friend, Obinna closed us in prayer and I remember some of his words.  Obinna prayed about the symbolism that Chris and I were running a race together the morning of our wedding and that we would, in fact, be running the race of life together.  He said that the Lord calls us to the race he sets before us and that ours will be united for the rest of our lives.

Thanks for sharing in our wedding joy through the pictures and my memories.
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Thursday, August 18, 2011

As of Late: August

As of Late:
  • As of late, I AM MARRIED!
  • As of late, my life has CHANGED! (I just went back to check my last As of Late post, and the changes are INNUMERABLE!)
  • As of late my name has changed, my title has changed, my address has changed, the box I check on my taxes (single/married) has changed, my URL has changed (please note: ), even my car and my phone has changed (well, work has given me a car and cell phone... so it's like a half change)!!!
  • As of late, I am learning what my husband likes in his lunches and I am packing them every morning
  • As of late, I am learning that a house does not organize itself and that moving in with something is not as easy as I imagined it would be.
  • As of late, my wonderful hubby and I have lots of conversations like, "You like the alarm clock (or enter the name of any household object) there?  Why do you like it there?  I would have thought to put it here."
  • As of late, I find myself in more prayer than ever before as I have SO MUCH TO learn about serving and loving my husband and I don't know how I'm every going to learn it all.
  • As of late, Chris and I are learning more and more and more about each other and loving every minute of the learning -- even the harder lessons.  Things are definitely challenging, but it is a wonderful kind of challenging.
  • As of late, I am cooking new kinds of dinners and much more often than ever before.  Did you know that men eat?  Like REALLY eat?  I sure didn't!  As of late, I am learning that making one casserole on Sunday and eating leftovers for the entire week does not cut it for feeding two people, one of whom is the Husband.
  • As of late, Chris and I have been exploring our new town (its name is Rifle -- Yee-Haw!) and we've found some great qualities and places.  One breakfast place is called "The Cowboy Calf-A"  So far, it has been our favorite restaurant in town.
  • As of late, I am learning how to work from home, as for mileage purposes, my work has told me I can have a home office this year.  I am grateful that they gave me this news when I'm still organizing the house, as needing to have a productive home office will certainly play a role in the way we arrange our home.
  • As of late, our little cat, Lexie, has been LOVING our new home (all these empty boxes and new places to explore).  Lexie has also made some new friend with the outdoor cats.  Last night, Chris and I got up to check on Lexie twice because of noises and crashes we heard and once Lexie was looking out the window chattering to one outdoor cat, and the second time, she was looking at and talking to two outdoor cats.  Lexie is an indoor cat and she's not loving it at the moment.
  • As of late, I've been doing LAUNDRY and RUNNING THE DISHWASHER like a crazy woman!  I refuse to put anything into my clean cupboards, closets and drawers (cleaning and disinfecting the cupboards, closets and drawers was my first task) until it's been washed, so I run LOAD AFTER LOAD AFTER LOAD of dishes and clothes every day.  This process feels endless.
  • As of late, I feel like my list is far too long for anyone to be interested in all of these things, but thank you for bearing with me.  I am just SO EXCITED for what is going on right now.  Excited and trying to stay motivated to organize the rest of our house.  Hopefully next month, my "as of late" will say that the house is organized and we've started entertaining friends!
A big THANK YOU to Christy for continuing to host these.  It feels great to be back to participate.

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Out of the Mouths of Babes...

Good Morning!

Here is a beautiful greeting, a friend sent me this morning.

What is your heart singing this morning?
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Sunday, August 14, 2011

Wedding Events: Friday Rehearsal

Friday afternoon (June 24, 2011) was Chris and my rehearsal, which also marked the first event where ALL of our family and bridal party members got together.

I must confess, when I first greeted ALL of the people there -- ALL of these people, most of whom didn't know each other, but knew Chris or me from a number of different phases of our lives.  All of them in one place was a little overwhelming -- and even more overwhelming was the idea that we were all going to somehow become in any way organized to rehearse ANYTHING, let alone Chris and my wedding.

Just a few of the MANY people waiting for instructions...
Fortunately, ours was not the first wedding rehearsal that our minister and the church's wedding coordinator had organized -- although the wedding coordinator did tell my mom that ours was the most smoothly run and organized wedding she had ever helped coordinate.  This was largely due to our amazing friends who stood up with us in the wedding, our WONDERFUL ushers who kept track of all they were supposed to do, our fabulous musicians (friends of mine) who are incredibly professional in all that they do, and my Sanden family need to think through every detail prior to an actual event.  All things came together for a productive rehearsal and PERFECT wedding.  :-D

Here are some pictures of our wedding rehearsal... I've tried like 9 times to put them in order, but they want to be in a random order today, so enjoy a mirage of pictures from the wedding rehearsal:
Look at these handsome men!
 Our AWESOME ushers!
My cute nephews were the "Flag Bearers"
 Chris sat his mom and and my mom... here he is walking his mom down the isle.
My dad and me coming down the isle...
 After my dad gives me away

Chris walking my mom down the isle
Only my dad walking me down the isle, but after the congregation is seated, my mom came forward so that both she and my dad stood beside me to "Give me away"... here we are hugging before she and my dad return to their seats.

Introducing our friends and family to everyone

I was fortunate enough to have 5 bridal shower with different friends and family across the country... those provided enough ribbon bouquets for all the gals to carry a practice bouquet.
Listening to Rev Tim's instructions

 My old roommate (until this past May), Maggie, read our old and new testament scriptures.

 My good friend, Leah was a terrific baby-sitter for baby Remington during the wedding events so Remy's mom, Meghan could be bridesmaid extraordinaire!
  My first harp teacher, Mary Wagner, provided our amazing prelude, processional, recessional and postlude music.
Our friends, Abbie (pianist), Julian (singer) and Lisa (singer) provided AMAZING special music for our wedding.  Here Julian and Lisa are singing "The Prayer" by Josh Groban and Charlotte Church.  Abbie is my good friend from childhood, Julian and I were both music majors at Washington and Lee University and Lisa and I were roommates at W&L.  The music these friends provided were my favorite parts of the ceremony (other than becoming Chris' wife)...

 Practicing communion, which was our first act as husband and wife
 Beautiful music creates tears...
 Three of our four ushers.  Check out these good-looking guys, Nick (Chris' brother), Jon (Chris' friend) and Daniel (Chris' brother-in-law)
 This sand was used in our ceremony and these amazing friends were my sand girls -- they prepared the sand, manned the tables and were the beautiful, friendly faces welcoming our guests.
 Chris and I faced the congregation for as much of the ceremony as possible
 Getting choked up with the music
 Our friends Lisa and Abbie perform "How Beautiful" by Twila Paris

Someone took a picture of the EXIT sign, which I think is pretty funny.  Next stop: rehearsal dinner!

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