Sunday, July 12, 2015

18 Years Ago Today We Said "I Do" and 18 Special Marriage Mementos

It's July 12 again which means another wedding anniversary for my husband and me!   18 years????? Hard to believe!   
If you have followed my blog awhile, these pictures and even this post may look familiar since last year on our 17th wedding anniversary this was my post. (Copy and paste is a wonderful tool, especially when I should be doing a million other things besides blogging!)  But, hey I love the post so much, why not keep reposting it?  
Today, Sunday, July 12, I will be traveling home from The Edel Gathering 2015! I can't wait to share about the weekend here on my blog!  I'm looking forward to getting home to see my family after a fun time with amazing women over the weekend and I'm looking forward to going out to dinner with my Prince Charming for our anniversary tonight!  
Ok, now on to this special edition of A Slice of Smith Life...the anniversary post with 18 special mementos...

18 years ago today we made a covenant and said "I do!".
Together, hand in hand, we have shared so much since first meeting on the beach in 1992.
Today we celebrate our marriage of 18 years.
This wonderful journey has been filled with many memories, blessings, trials, and joyful tears.
With 5 blessings, I continue to love growing old with you!
Everyday with you is a gift and so much fun too!
Happy Anniversary to us!
I love you!
This photo of the church's ceiling is one of our favorites.
 The photographer captured this beautiful shot during our 
wedding ceremony.

On our way to the reception after our ceremony

Since my hubby and I met on the beach we had a beach themed wedding cake complete with realistic-looking and delicious candy seashells cascading down the cake. The cake was so beautiful! She also made the shells so realistic that some of our wedding guests would not bite into them because they thought they were real seashells!

A close-up photo of the candy shells on our cake. Thank you Nancy for your beautiful cake art!

On top of our cake was this cross uniting 2 wedding bands placed in the candy coral. This cross is now hanging in our home as a constant reminder of Who keeps our marriage and love strong.

Two are better than one: they get a good wage for their labor. If the one falls, the other will lift up his companion. Woe to the solitary man! For if he should fall, he has no one to lift him up. So also, if two sleep together, they keep each other warm. How can one alone keep warm? Where a lone man may be overcome, two together can resist. A three-ply cord is not easily broken.  Ecclesiastes 4: 9-12

In our home we have wedding momentos hanging or displayed in various locations. I always enjoy looking at them as a constant reminder of our marriage promises and gifts. To celebrate our 18th wedding anniversary I thought I would share 17 wedding momentos that are dear to us that decorate our home and 1 photo that shows something special my husband made for me. :)
Warning: long post with even more pictures.  I feel like I'm back 18 years ago as I make this post so scroll down fast if you don't have time to read everything and walk down memory lane with me.  Plus, 18 years ago I wasn't blogging, but if I was, you can be sure I would have our wedding posted in more detail and pictures :) 

Memento 1:  This is a pre-wedding picture that I thought I would throw in here.  This was taken on the beach in July 1995, two years before our wedding.  

Memento 2:  We have this poem hanging near our kitchen/dining room and it was written by my mother-in-law one night in the middle of the night when it just popped into her head, as she explained it.  She surprised us with this framed poem and read it to us at our rehearsal dinner.  She scanned my husband's and my foot prints from our birth certificates and placed them onto the poem.  Anthony's prints are in the top left corner, while mine are on the bottom right. We will treasure this gift always and it's one of my favorite wedding gifts! 

It reads:  God Knew...
God knew what He was doing when He made these little feet.  
He knew it would be our destiny that someday we would meet. 
He knew that we would fall in love and eventually wed.
He knew the path we would follow and in His foot steps our feet would tread. 

Memento 3: Here is a Marriage Prayer that was a wedding gift from one of our friends (who is now a priest).  We have this prayer hanging in our bedroom and I love its simple, yet meaningful words.

It reads:  Lord, help us to remember when we first met and the love that grew between us.  To see the good within the other, and to solve our problems.  Help us to say the kind and loving things and to ask forgiveness of the other.  We put our marriage in your hands.  Amen.  ~N.V. Pearle

Memento 4: This was a gift that we have hanging in our apostolic blessing from then Pope John Paul II who is now Saint John Paul II!   

Memento 5: Here's the church ceiling picture, as posted above, framed on our wall.  I love this picture!
Memento 6: Going to the reception photo in a glass frame

Memento 7:  My wedding portrait taken by my Dad who is a professional photographer, but he hired his photography friend to take our wedding.

Memento 8:  Mr. and Mrs. Smith at the altar

Are you still with me?  Halfway there! ...  :)

Memento 9 & 10: Our wedding invitation that my parents framed for us.  Our invitation has seashells on the border to go with our beach themed wedding.  I edited the bottom of it to distort some location details, hence the funny looking print :)  Our wedding album sits on our dining room buffet and occasionally I'll see our children flipping through it. 

Memento 11 & 12: I love this bride and groom plate painted by our friends from college.  On the back of the plate they accidently wrote "Love one anoter" so we all had a good laugh about that.  I love the plate for the fact that they took time to make it so cute and unique with it's own "unique" spelling :)  The white candle is decorated with our wedding invitation that was glued on by a relative and given to us as a gift. We light it each year on our anniversary. 

Memento 13 & 14: Our unique starfish frame that was gifted to us that holds a picture of us cutting our wedding cake at the reception.  In the background is a picture of flowers that are popular in St. John Virgin Islands where we went on our honeymoon.  The picture on the right side shows the cross that was on top of our wedding cake and also hanging on our wall is a plaque with a beautiful marriage blessing on it.  

The marriage blessing is so beautiful I'll share a close up shot so the words can be read: 

Memento 15: Here's another unique and special gift that we have hanging in our foyer.  It reminds me of Asian artwork.  When you look closer, what do you see?  The drawing is actually each letter of my first name and my husband's first name.  Tracy...Anthony

Memento 16: Our "domestic church" was established in 1997

Memento 17:  Scenic pictures hang in our home from St. John, Virgin Islands, where we took our honeymoon.  We would love to go back to this beautiful place.  Maybe one day...

Memento 18:   In 2010, Anthony was powerwashing our house and he surprised me by creating this special message for me on our driveway.  Awww...I love you too Anthony! :)

OK, so if you stuck with this post to this point, I'm impressed and I thank you for taking the time to read it and view the pictures.  If anything else, maybe some of my momentos will give someone wedding gift ideas :)

One tradition that we have done each year on our anniversary since our first anniversary is watch our video from our wedding. Now we did get married before the digital age so the color quality is...90ish, but the memories of our day continue to be with us each time we play our video. We did copy it onto a DVD to help make it last longer.   

It is a joy to now watch the video with our Cupcakes as the younger ones have asked through the years why they weren't there to celebrate with us ;-) Each year we are not only reminded of our holy vows we took in front of our Lord, family, and friends, but we also get to see friends and loved ones that are no longer with us here on earth. You know I still get "butterflies" and filled with excitement just before I watch the part of the video where I'm about to meet my true love at the altar and begin our lives as husband and wife!  

Finally I'll sign off this looooooooong wedding anniversary post with one more picture (I really promise, just one more) :)
The reason I post this picture is because recently I came across this blog post about Why Should Men Propose on One Knee? and I thought I would share the author's insights about this honorable and well-known tradition. Of course, my husband isn't proposing here, but you get the point. 
I've been blessed with 18 marital years with my husband and I look forward to the many, many, many, many years ahead as God wills it.  

This post is linked to New Evangelists Monthly, August 2015, Issue #32



Billie Jo said...

Happy Anniversary!!!!!
Such wonderful ways to remember the day.
Steve and I celebrated 24!!!!!! Years last month...
Hard to believe how quickly it goes!

Thank you Billie Jo! Happy Anniversary to you! 24? That's awesome!

Yes, time flies! Thanks for stopping in!

Chris said...

Ok, I'm literally in tears...what lovely mementos! Loved all your pics...a few are familiar...but many are new to me. So beautiful, Tracy!!! Happy 18th a bit late. I did not check email in 2 + weeks so getting your posts not is a nice thing to come home to.

The seashell cake? Wow, how unique!!!

And 18 years///oh my two were so young!! Good for you. You found each other early in life! We're at 18 also, <> but we were 31 and 36 when we tied the knot!!

Loved this. Thanks for sharing, girlfriend .
Now back to laundry, loading my vaca pics and maybe a blog spot soon on the trip.
Take care and happy belated anniversary!

Thank you so much Chris! You are so sweet to stop by and comment on my anniversary post when you are so very busy coming home from a big trip! Yes, and we love the seashell cake too! :)

Birgit J said...

What a lovely post about beautiful memories - both past and in the making. Congratulations and anniversary blessings!

Beautiful celebration of your vows. It's wonderful that you've kept the frames out all these years.

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