Dancing Through
Ugly Times

Old black and white photograph cut out from the newspaper of a couple dancing in an alley.

I clipped this photo from a newspaper article back in 2006 or 2007.

It immediately became a source of encouragement for me. I pinned it up in my office cubicle and used it as a constant reminder to find ways of dancing through some of life’s ugliest times. The situation we were in was filled with confusion, pain and grief. And I knew our circumstances would not soon be changing. We had a long dark road ahead of us and I knew there was only one direction to travel and that was straight through. No shortcuts and no detours. But I just couldn’t see myself waiting until we reached the other side to find some kind of joy in my life. Discovering this picture was a reminder from God that I could find joy, even dance, despite how bleak things looked around me. If only I had eyes to see and a heart willing to dance.

I thought about dissecting the photo with you, but decided against it. That’s the beauty of a photograph, of art, is that it can speak to each person uniquely. So, I hope you look it over as a whole, then piece by piece. And I hope it speaks to you as much as it did to me, both personally and for your marriage as well.

Let’s all seek joy today, regardless of our circumstances…we may even find ourselves dancing in it if we try.

Photo by Louise Oligny

White Wedding at the Ferry Building

Earlier this year, Vitaliy and I had the pleasure of participating in the Lab Event in San Francisco.

I wrote a little recap of our experience, but today I wanted to share the beautiful vignette we collaborated on. Our team went for a more modern and very clean approach and sought to inspire the bride wanting a bright White Wedding. Each vendor that invested in this vignette brought their own unique and creative contribution and I thought our vignette was absolutely stunning. Here are a few of the things I personally loved.

The Ferry Building: The Lab Event itself took place at the beautiful Ferry Building in San Francisco. The architecture became such a beautiful backdrop to our White Wedding. We used different elements from the building and incorporated them into our design.

The gold accents: I love the gold sequined place cards and the gold flatware. Gold and white is always a chic combination, why not incorporate the pair into your wedding plans?

The bridesmaids gifts: More often than not, I find brides gifting jewelry to their bridesmaids as thank you gifts. I thought these cheese boards were such a unique and thoughtful alternative.

The floral chandelier: Sharla Flock Desgins worked a true masterpiece!

The wedding day emergency kit: Pretty wedding inspiration is always nice, but I love that Downey Street Events incorporated practical and pretty details for brides-to-be.

And here is the amazing team of vendors that brought it all to life.

If you are getting married at the Ferry Building or planning a white wedding of your own, I hope you find these ideas helpful. And lastly, here is a recap of our 2013 Lab Event too.

White linens, white florals, clear acrylic chairsWhite wedding square invitations with gold lined envelopesWhite wedding inspiration at the Ferry Building in San FranciscoGold knife, spoon and forks for a white inspired weddingDetails of white wedding at the Ferry BuildingBeautiful flowers by Sharla Flock at the Ferry BuildingWhite wedding cake at the Ferry BuildingA table with glasses and white flora centerpiece at San Francisco Ferry Building. Wedding photography by Pictilio.Wedding party favors for a white wedding at the Ferry Building. Gold and white color inspiration.Fun wedding party giftDetails for an all white wedding at the Ferry Building in San FranciscoClear acrylic box with white place card and gold sequinWedding inspiration and photography at the Ferry Building in San Francisco

Thanksgiving + Marriage

Since this is a blog dedicated to marriage and tomorrow is Thanksgiving, I felt it only fitting to share a few of the things I’m thankful for in my marriage.

  • Laughter. There are days I’m shocked at the amount of laughter that fills our home and hearts after 8 years of marriage.
  • Change. I am no longer the same person I was when I got married. Thanks to our differences, Vitaliy has made my life richer.
  • Life. Because of our oneness, we get to bring a new life into the world this February. The miracle of it all!
  • Difficulty. Our marriage began with pain and many difficulties, but it built a strong foundation that we are thankful for today.
  • Family. I will be the first to say that building a relationship with in-laws is no easy task. But the challenge has shaped my heart in new ways.
  • Faith. Marriage has taught me so much about God, grace, and forgiveness. I am thankful for every lesson and how it has helped my faith grow.
  • Progress. Marriage is not a destination, it’s the start of a beautiful, and often messy, journey. And I am thankful for where we’ve come as a couple and as individuals.
  • Mornings. We start the day slow and intentional. Some of our most meaningful conversations happen over breakfast. My favorite time.
  • Dating. I love making new memories together. I so enjoy the time set aside to continue getting to know the man he is now.
  • Time. It refuses to stand still, slow, or wait upon us. I count every day and every moment with Vitaliy a blessing. I know that tomorrow is not guaranteed, so today I am thankful.

What are you thankful for in your own marriage?

We are visiting my family in St. Louis for the holiday. And it snowed today! Another reason for me to be thankful. I wish you all a happy, happy Thanksgiving!

Snow covered farm in St. Charles, MO