Saturday, October 29, 2011

A Scarf Tutorial

With cold weather upon us, a lot of us are starting to reach for scarves to keep our long, graceful, and non-wrinkly necks warm.  (ha)    Or else we just love scarves because they're a great way to change up an outfit. 

However, my problem is that once I get a scarf in my hands, I never have the faintest clue what I should do with it.  I hate to admit it, but I really am intimidated by those long, lovely pieces of cloth.

Happily, I ran across a video that shows 25 quick ways to tie a scarf.  Not only is the scarf-tying amazing and helpful, but the whole production and vibe of the video is fun and creative, too.  

At the end of it, if you want more specific instructions for a particular style, they are also provided.


Friday, October 28, 2011

Wedding Wednesd . . . er . . . Friday.

Guess what came in the mail today?

Four CD’s jam packed with wedding pictures!  May we all just pause right here for a brief moment of hooray-ing.

Now lest some of you think that you will be required to look at 13 bajillion pictures and this whole Wedding Wednesday thingie is never going to go away, here’s the deal.   As long as there are at least five comments each week on the Wedding Edition, I will post more pictures the following week.  When the comments start dipping below that or, of course, when I run out of pictures, we will move on to new Wednesday topics.  Sound like a deal?

So . . . . let’s get going on our latest (Postponed) Wedding Wednesday.

Flowers by Frank—the father of the bride.
ceremony 1

The card--including a handwritten letter--that Meagan had delivered to Nathan right before the ceremony.  (The song I wrote for the ceremony was based on that letter.)

One of the really cool things that Nathan and Meagan did was to give Sheri and I each a piece of a cross to carry as we were escorted in.  (I’m being escorted by my nephew, Caleb.)
The part I carried was the outside of the cross . . . .


. . .  and the part Sheri carried was the inside. (She is being escorted by her nephew, Seth.)
We both went up to the platform and laid our individual pieces down on a table before being escorted to our Mom Row. (I’ll tell you how those pieces fit into the ceremony in just a moment.)
ceremony 11
Next came the darling ring bearer and flower girl. . .

. . . followed by some really, really cute bridesmaids.

My little baby boy (AKA the groom) got ready to make his walk 
to the front of the church . . .
. . . and then it was all about here comes the bride.

The groom was just a wee bit entranced with the vision before him.
In fact, he was so entranced that he felt compelled to do a whole 
heap of hand holdin’ throughout the ceremony.
It was such a perfect sanctuary for their ceremony; I loved it.

And now the story of the pieces of the cross we carried in . . .At a certain point in the ceremony, Nathan and Meagan walked to the side of the platform where the two ministers gave a short exhortation about the cross.  They said the outside of it represented Nathan and his strength and the way he was a covering for Meagan.  The intricate, beautiful inside part of the cross represented Meagan, sheltered within her husband’s strength.


When they fit the two pieces together, the cross looked like this. 
Truly beautiful and so meaningful.

(Edited to add: Sheri just left a comment with some wonderful information about the cross's symbolism I wasn't aware of.  She wrote,  
"You may want to share that the cross is set on a solid foundation representing the need for the marriage to be built on Christ the Solid Rock. And three golden pegs secure the piece representing God the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. So Powerful! From all these comments, sounds like you'll need to stretch WW until they produce some grandchildren for us to promote. "
They received communion together and Nathan prayed
over their marriage while a special song was being sung.
DSC_0389 2

And then?  It was over and we were presented with Mr. And Mrs. Nathan Smith,
an announcement which produced one of my favorite pictures of the whole day.

Post . . . Soon.

A new wedding post will be up in the next half hour or so.  Hooray!

Thursday, October 27, 2011

The Taming Of The Shrubs

Well, for those of you were faithfully waiting for Thedding Thursday, I’m afraid it’s not going to happen.  Since I have already posted all the wedding pictures I took as well as the ones Meagan had already given me, she had put a whole new batch of pictures in the mail to me earlier in the week.  However, they didn’t arrive today when they were supposed to, since mail is notoriously slow reaching Manteo.   I am very much hoping that they will make their appearance tomorrow, in which case, we will be all weddingish then.
But today?  I guess we’ll instead have to settle with shrubishness.   Not quite as exciting as weddingish I realize but hey, desperate times call for desperate measures!  
So Here, For Your Reading Enjoyment, Is The Story of the Smith Shrubs
(try to contain your enthusiasm)

When we first bought our house two years ago, the shrubs were just a wee bit wild.  But there were a whole bunch of other things that we needed to accomplish with our money and our time and so they had to say a wee bit wild for a while.


A couple weeks ago, however, Steve got it in his head to wade into those ol’ shrubs and get them sorted out and he called on his young and capable assistant to help him with the job at hand.  He knew enough not to call on me because he knows that if I got down on my knees to pull even one weed, we would need two hoists and one ambulance crew to get me upright again.
And hoists and ambulance crews?  They sort of get in the way of Smith Shrub-bing.



This my favorite picture of the ones I took that day.  May I just reassure you that I did not, repeat did NOT, lie down on my stomach to get that particular perpendicular perspective.  One of the big reasons I bought the camera I did (Nikon D5000) is that it features a tiltable screen which allows me to get shots that my non-flexible body would otherwise have to walk (or limp) right on by.

And now . . . .
Here are a few shots  showing what the Smith Shrubs look like after the hard work invested by the Smith Shrubbers.  This area will be especially pretty in the spring and summer because the rose bushes planted there produce the loveliest of blooms.
I’m just thrilled that our shrubs have been tamed and even more thrilled that I was not involved in the taming thereof.  

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Wedding unWednesday Leading Up To Thedding Thursday

Yes, ladies and gentlemen, it is Wednesday. 

And yes, it has been decreed in recent weeks that Wednesdays would be devoted to reliving the happy memories of a certain wedding of a certain son and a certain new daughter-in-law. 

However, due to some unavoidable complexities,  the pictures that should have been posted today will instead have to be posted tomorrow.   And so, for this week only, we will have Wedding Thursday which I realize doesn’t have quite the same ring as Wedding Wednesday--unless, of course, we were to call it Thedding Thursday!  Or not.

However.   So as not to leave all you wonderful Meganate Fans hanging (and to bring new readers up to speed a bit on the history of Nathan and Meagan’s relationship) I am going to post a few pictures from their past years together--pictures that all led up to that Big Day that has made all our Wedding Wednesdays possible.

Here are Meagan and Nate with their families and friends.  Nathan was 14 and Meagan was 15 and they barely knew each other at that point.

2004 A Feb 003

They attended the formal together at the Christian Academy where we were pastoring.  It wasn’t officially a real date, though; it was more of a situation where their moms thought it would be a fun thing if they went together since we were all—them and their families—such good friends.

Unknown Person

I have always loved this picture because it captures their quirky relationship so well.  The reason they were making faces was because were getting tired from smiling so much and they were trying to do “facial muscle stretches” to relax them.

2005 A June 015

And I love this picture from that evening too because you know what it looks like?  It looks like newlyweds leaving after a wedding!

2005 A June 094

This picture makes me smile because I can just imagine when Nathan and Meagan get their own house and start re-painting.  They will look just like this—just a few years older.

2005 A June 046

Here they are at our house with Meagan’s family and some church friends.  For some reason, we are all singing, but I have no idea why. 

2005 A June 053

This picture has nothing to do with Nathan and Meagan but I’ve always loved it so I’ll post it.  The lovely lady in the center is Meagan’s mom, Sheri.  While she and Frank were transitioning in ministry, she led the choir for a while at our church in Smithfield and this was taken at our house after a special choir performance.  It captures Sheri’s verve and personality so well.

2005 A June 100

This is actually Nathan and Meagan’s first real date when he officially asked her out.   It consisted of me taking them to the local outlet mall (Nathan didn’t have his license) where they went out to eat and then walked around the mall and shopped.  (It was mostly window shopping since there were no big bucks involved.  I picked them back up at the end of their big evening and that was that!

2005 B August 100

I have to laugh when I look at this picture because . . .


. . . some things never change.


I really do love this fella quite a lot.  He and I talked on the phone for a whole hour the other night and had such a lovely visit.


I don’t think I’ve ever seen a happier face as when Meagan surprised him one day by a visit (from FL to NC) when he wasn’t expecting her.



Nathan has always known how to make Meagan laugh.


(Sarah had her headphones on and was completely unaware of the merriment unfolding in front of her.)


A few more miscellaneous shots. . .



meg grad


And there you have it.  Wedding unWednesday, leading up to Thedding Thursday!


Thanks to all of you who left so many gracious, encouraging comments on Monday after I posted about not feeling so well—physically or emotionally.   It meant a lot to me that so many of you shared your personal stories about your own struggles.  None of us is alone in having some down times; we are part of a circle of fellow strugglers and that in itself is an encouragement.

As for my doctor visit, he listened to my lungs and said that he heard some gunk in there.  (He used a fancy medical term but I sort of like the sound of gunk instead.)  He put me on two meds and said I should be feeling better soon.

Well, it’s now Wednesday and I’m still feeling rather lousy overall, although I think my lungs are clearing up.  So I’ll just keep pluggin’ away here and think longingly of the day when my nose isn’t red, my head isn’t achy, and my body isn’t feeling like that of a 104-year old lady. 

See ya tomorrow!