Coffee Talk 08.05.18

On this day 23 years ago, I woke up and stepped on the bathroom scale and promptly burst into tears.

It was my wedding day.

I had been fighting a few pesky pounds ever since starting birth control pills the month before, and my dress had been altered to fit to me several months before that when the excitement of wedding planning had my weight at an all-time low. I knew fitting into it was going to be a challenge.

Yes, this is how vain I am… the morning of the day I was to marry the love of my life, my first thought was if my dress was going to zip or not.

I had been out late the night before visiting with family and out-of-town guests, so I was overtired and overwrought with excitement, and my nerves were pretty much shot. This was the final straw.

My mom found me in a puddle on the bathroom floor, and I think she thought I was having second thoughts about the entire marriage.

She said her best calm, motherly voice, “Tell me one thing. Do you want to marry Paul?”

Through tears, I cried adamantly, “YESSSS!!!”

“Well, then,” she replied crisply with her relief barely contained. “Nothing else matters. Get up, wash your face, and let’s get ready to go.”

So I did, and that was that.

Funny how 23 years later, I often find myself handling my two daughters’ dramatic outbursts much the same way.

As it turned out, my dress barely zipped, and the lace the seamstress had artfully sewn over the chest for modesty’s sake was pretty much pointless (gotta love birth control pills; I didn’t last on those very long) but somehow we managed to wrangle me into the dress, and I walked down the aisle and said “I do.”

This morning when I got up and stepped on the scale, 20 pounds heavier and 23 years older, I couldn’t help but think about that hot, humid August day in 1995, when I once and for all joined my life with a guy I had met on a blind date only two years before.

We had no idea what we were getting into, but I was as sure then as I am now that he’s the man I want to spend the rest of my life with.

And here we are.

I’m still fighting a few pesky pounds and trying to contain the overabundance the good Lord gave me, and now Paul is the one who has to deal with my emotional meltdowns, but I can say with complete confidence that after creating three kids and five homes together and surviving all the ups and downs and highs and lows that life has thrown at us over the years, I would do it all over again… but maybe without the bangs.

I’d love to tell you that we planned a romantic getaway to celebrate our 23 years together or even a nice dinner out, but we spent most of the weekend working on the house, and we’re exhausted, so we decided to stay in last night and have friends over to enjoy the backyard and the pool, which was fine by me.

In years past, I would have moved heaven and earth to make sure we had a proper anniversary celebration, but I guess one the things you learn with time and age is that the ordinary everyday moments are what make a life together — not the milestone celebrations.

Sure, those are nice to have when it works out, but they aren’t so important in the grand scheme of things. I know too many people who have had their marriages cut short, usually by that beast we call cancer, so I try not to take even a day for granted.

Today we’ll be going to church and probably out for lunch afterwards, as is our usual practice. The teenagers will likely opt to grab take out and come home — they aren’t as fond of dining out as Paul and I are, which never ceases to baffle me. I guess we’ve made it too commonplace for them, but for me, any meal I don’t have to cook or clean up is a win.

Later this afternoon, we have family coming to stay the week and help us with some painting. See, that’s what happens when you come to visit us — we put you to work! But seriously, we’re excited to see them and spend time together.

I actually think this is the perfect way to spend our 23rd anniversary — doing the ordinary things, going to church, spending time with family. Fortunately the rain has finally moved out, and it looks like a beautiful hot, sunny week ahead — perfect August weather.

It always comes back to the weather with me, doesn’t it?

Speaking of the weather, it’s only getting hotter out there, so I better get outside and get my run in if it’s going to happen today.

I hope you all enjoy the rest of your weekend and have a blessed Sunday!

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80 Responses

  1. Happy 23rd Anniversary! I loved your wedding day story, bless your heart. You are as gorgeous today as you were on your wedding Day! You are so right, it’s the ordinary day to day things that build a life together. We just celebrated our 40th a month ago and I’d say “I Do” all over again!

  2. Congratulations on your anniversary of 23 years together!  May God keep all of you healthy, and happy! Have a awesome day!!!

  3. Happy Anniversary! Thank you for putting it all out there and sharing your life (and some great, practical fashion) with your readers. I just moved to a new home, actually a new state. I truly appreciate blogger connections that travel wherever you go more now than ever. I hope you enjoy a perfectly ordinary day and week with your family! Blessings!

  4. Happy Anniversary! I agree with you on the ordinary moments being as special, or more so, than a big celebration. My husband and I just celebrated our 25th and didn’t have the time or means to celebrate in a grand way. But it was special and sweet nonetheless. Here’s to many more happy years for you and your husband! 🎉❤️

  5. HAPPY ANNIVERSARY TO YOU AND PAUL!  💍🍾 This was a beautiful Coffee Talk.  I totally agree with you that we don’t have to do something grandure to celebrate the major milestones.  Fully enjoying and celebrating each day that we have together is much more important.  Have a blessed day!

  6. Beautifully written. I agree 100%. Appreciating time together, family, a strong faith and good health, everyday, are the key to happiness   You have found what so many search for in vain. Happy Anniversary to you both.

  7. Happy 23rd.  Enjoy your day together.  
    I love that you mention the weather.  It’s fun and so very different than our weather in southern California.  

  8. Ahhh. Such a beautiful post. I can hear your heart ❤️. And you were such a lovely bride and groom! Congratulations on 23 years and thank you for writing such an encouraging post, one that conveys your commitment and the value you place on marriage and family. I love that! 💕

  9. Happy, Happy anniversary to you two!!  This is a wonderful post. Thank you so much for sharing! I agree, I’d rather have a regular day at home with the family ANY time! These are the words of a mom with three sons, two of whom are college bound later this month! It’s my oldest son’s 5th year of college and my middle son’s 3rd year.  This could be the last summer I have my group all together😕. I love every bittersweet moment I have with them and my husband, all together! 

  10. Happy Anniversary!  I think it sounds like a great way to spend the weekend.  Hope you have a great week.

  11. Happy 23rd Anniversary Jo-Lynne! You look as beautiful now as you did then! Wishing you and Paul many, many more!

  12. Happy anniversary, Jo-Lynne!!! Ours is one week from today. What were we thinking getting married in the heat and humidity of August in Kentucky?! Enjoy the day and the memories of your wedding! 

  13. Happy anniversary!  Thanks for sharing your story.    My husband and I just had our 36th and I agree…it’s the everyday things that are important.  I would definitely do it all over again.  On a side note, my curtains came from Macy’s yesterday and we love them!  So thanks again for sharing your guest room with us!

  14. I loved your coffe talk today.  The wedding day story and the simplicity you chose for today.  After 47 years of marriage to my high school boyfriend I can testify it really is the ordinary moments that make life beautiful and satisfying.  We love to celebrate “us” but sometimes that’s just with dinner at home and a Redbox!

  15. You looked SO very beautiful on your wedding day!!! I love the pictures of both of you and want to wish you a very Happy Anniversary!!!! Giant Congratulations!!!!

  16. Bravo!! What a wonderful Coffee Talk-Happy Anniversary to you and Paul, and I wish you many more 🎂 👰 🎩 

  17. I love your wedding story and message today! It’s so true and one I can truly relate to. Happy Anniversary! I hope it’s a blissful, ordinary day!!

  18. Happy Anniversary! May God bless you with good health, the love of family and friends (including) blogging friends and many more happy years together. 

  19. Happy Anniversary!! ❤️ Your comment about the bangs made me laugh 😂 so funny! But hey, everyone wore bangs in the 90s! You were in style! It’ll be fun to see our kids look back on their fashion sense in 20 years and laugh at the stick-straight hair and ripped jeans. 🤣 I got married in ‘93 and I swear I had an identical bouquet! Those huge floral arrangements  were so popular! I loved it! 
    Enjoy your day with your special man. ☀️

  20. Holy frig ( a NB redneck term lol) today’s post made me cry….you are a gifted writer! And…oh my… your son looks so much like your husband!

  21. Happy Anniversary… we just celebrated our 29 th last weekend and because of so much on the go we didn’t do too much. In fact we had Chinese‘ food brought in and ate with our son and his girlfriend (we had just met). Our daughter was busy visiting with her finance and his grandparents from out of town. So that was ok.. it was actually our sons girlfriends bday the next day so I made her a birthday cake.. not a typical anniversary celebration but these are the moments we need to grasp while we can… our children will soon be on their own.., so I was any too glad to share our day. Hope you enjoy your day… sounds like you are and by the way you don’t look much different from the wedding pics except the bangs…😀 you’re definitely taking care of yourself.

  22. Well, you looked beautiful. I’m sure no one noticed it was a tad tight. Congratulations on 23 years. I can tell from the blog that you are a special family. We can identify with you and enjoy the journey with you. I am ready for fall. Our summer begins early and ends late so it feels like it has gone on forever.

  23. Happy 23rd Anniversary!! 🍾 Have a wonderful day! I am right behind you, we will celebrate our 23rd next month.

  24. Happy Anniversary Jo-Lynne!  In this day and age, that’s a big deal. Enjoy your family this week. We start school on Friday. I’m dreading getting back into school mode as much as my son. It’s soon soon. I think the older we get the faster time flies. This summer flew faster than others. 

  25. Happy Anniversary Jo-Lynne! I’m getting ready to say “I do” to the love of my life. I truly enjoyed reading every bit of yours.

  26. Happy anniversary!  Loved reading your story.  You are so right about the ordinary day to day things that build a life. 

  27. Happy Anniversary! What a beautiful story and you are so right about the regular, normal, and simple every day things we do with our husband that are the most important part of a marriage.

  28. I loved your post! I just spent a perfect day with my husband of 40 years, just the two of us (all 5 kids are on their own now). Church, breakfast out, golf, a swim in the pool, and steak on the grill. See what you have to look forward to! 

  29. Happy Anniversary to you both! I always enjoy seeing other people’s wedding photos, and yours are absolutely beautiful! Blessings for many happy years ahead of you! 💕

  30. Happiest of Anniversaries Jo-Lynne! I pray your “ordinary” day was as sweet as can be and wish you and Paul many, many, more years of health, immeasurable joy, and more blessing and favor you can ask or think. He is certainly SO good! 

  31. Happy Anniversary!  You both look so young…and in love!  We just celebrated 37 years in June…4 kids and 13 moves…it just gets better & better!  Nothing like doing life with your best friend, right?!?

  32. Happy anniversary!! Wow I did a double take at your wedding photo – my dress, veil, flowers, updo and BANGS (circa 1997) were virtually identical. Too funny. 90s style aside, your thoughts on how wonderful “ordinary” can be are so refreshing and true. 
    Enjoy your day!!

  33. Awwwwww great pictures, you were a lovely bride Jo-Lynne!! (and the dress looks gorgeous too!)
    Happy Anniversary!

  34. Hi Jo-Lynne! What a beautiful bride and handsome groom! You look radiant in that beautiful dress! Happy Anniversary to you both! We, too, have an August anniversary coming up! Thank you for always sharing from your heart!!

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