Sunday, July 6, 2008

Show & Tell: 23 years?? Yikes!!

It was a blazing hot, sunny day, 23 years ago. Almost four years after we'd met, 3.5 years together in spirit (though often thousands of miles apart at school), July 6, 1985, was the day my dh & I finally got married and began our life together.

Appropriately, the entire wedding took place on the campus of the university where we first met in the fall of 1981. My family had moved every 3-6 years during my lifetime & my parents had recently moved to a new town where we knew few people & hotel/motel rooms were scarce. We did approach the minister of the Anglican congregation where my mother attended but he was lukewarm on marrying us since dh & I weren't members of his parish & not likely to be.

So we moved to Plan B, which was to approach the chaplain at the Anglican college on the campus where we had met, in a city about an hour from where my parents now lived, with a Ramada Inn close by that was willing to offer us a group discount. "I'd be happy to marry you," the chaplain, a lovely, British-born woman said without hesitation. At one of our meetings, she asked us whether she should include the part in the blessing asking to be blessed with the gift of children, and the grace to bring them up to know & love the Lord. We looked at each other & smiled and said yes.

The reception was held in one of the multipurpose rooms in the student union building on campus, with floor to ceiling windows that opened in the evening onto a patio filled with shrubbery. It was almost like having an outdoor wedding. We took our photos in front of the beautiful, pillared administration building (built in 1912). The sun was hot & bright (we're squinting in many of the photos), but there was, thankfully, a breeze, as you can see in the top photo. I have the train of my dress gathered up over my arm, with my veil flapping in the breeze, so it's not a perfect shot, but I love that photo. Somehow, it reminds me of the scene in "Gone With the Wind" just before the intermission, with Scarlett standing beneath a tree & silhouetted against the sunset sky, vowing she'll never be hungry again.

We had 120 guests, all but four of them from my side. The four were dh's dad, brother & two cousins, who all flew in from Toronto to make up the male half of the wedding party. My bridesmaids wore short dresses in "dusty pink," which was all the rage back in 1985, and we carried pink & white roses in our bouquets. We dined on chicken cordon bleu and fresh local strawberries for dessert.

We spent the night in the city's swankiest downtown hotel, drove out to my parents' the next day to open gifts & spend more time with family who had come a long way to celebrate with us and, the next morning, flew to Calgary for a week-long honeymoon that took us to Banff & Jasper (as well as the infamous Stampede!). I remember dh was exhausted from all the driving and slept for 12 hours while I watched the end of the Live Aid concert in our Calgary hotel room.

Our first dance was to "You & I" by Crystal Gayle & Eddie Rabbitt, with a refrain that seems strangely prophetic, given the way things have turned out: "We'll be allright... just you & I."

It's 23 years later. For better or for worse it IS just you & I, and yes, the kids are allright. Happy anniversary, sweetie. xoxo
(For more of this week's Show & Tell from other bloggers, visit here.)


  1. Happy anniversary! Sounds like a great day and a great party.

    (My bridesmaids also wore shortish dresses, and my sister's bridesmaids dresses were only slightly longer.)

    I won't tell you what I was doing in 1985, but it was on another continent.

  2. I love that photo! I didn't even think it looked like you were holding your dress funny (I went back after you said so, and no, still looks good)
    Congrats on staying strong for 23 years.

  3. happy anniversary, loribeth! sounds like a wonderful day. wishing you a lovely celebration together.

  4. Happy Anniversary!! For someone who was reluctant to get married, I'm now such a sap for wedding photos.

  5. Thanks for the photo's and a very happy anniversary.

    I went back to my book of common prayer, and I looked at the part of the liturgy about children.

    You carried Katie for six months, you treated her with love and care and concern, and you honour her every day. I'd say you fulfilled your promise, in the circumstances God gave you.

  6. What a beautiful anniversary post! Happy Anniversary. I just found your blog today, of course via Show N Tell and I must say I will be back. Happy Anniversary my friend.

  7. I love that this is your show & tell and that you watched Live Aid from the hotel room :-)

    I second Mrs. Spit. I think you have shown a lot of grace and love.

    Happy anniversary, sweetie!

  8. that sounds like a lovely day! Isn't it great just how much memory a photograph brings back?

  9. Happy ANNIVERSARY!!! :)

    Pic's are great, the top one is positively lovely.

    Wishing you a happy 23 yrs (and more) to come!

    My S&T

  10. Happy anniversary! What great pix! Hope you did something memorable!

  11. Happy anniversary! Twenty-three years... how awesome!

    I remember the dusty pink BM dresses of the mid-80s -- often paired with a deeper mauve or burgundy, right?

  12. Lovely! Thanks for sharing the photos and a very happy anniversary to you both. Congratulations on 23 years of marriage!

  13. Loribeth, you are so cool for keeping your centennial pin and flag! And may I say how jealous I am? Thanks for chiming in - I don't expect a huge response as most of my readers are American, so it's extra nice to hear from my fellow Canadians!

  14. Happy Anniversary!! I love knowing that a happy couple got married on my birthday! My bridesmaids also wore a dusty pink as well ... and that was in 1996! Woo-hoo!

    Here's to many many more years of happiness!

  15. Happy Anniversary!! We will be at #23 in October... time flies!!

    Alyson LID 01/27/06 (IA China)