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Beautiful Wedding Photos for My 500th Blog Article

Ahhh! We're married! So awesome. Could I have imagined this 499 articles ago?

Ahhh! We’re married! So awesome. Could I have imagined this 499 articles ago?

This is the FIVE-HUNDREDTH article I have written on my Around the World “L” Travel Blog since its birth in 2009! The timing is fitting for three reasons. Read on to hear them…

Such beautiful Bridesmaids! My best friends for over a decade.

Such beautiful Bridesmaids! My best friends for over a decade.

First, as you can see from these photos, I just got married!

What does that have to do with this site? Well, I started this blog when I left my job to voyage around the world for a year alone in 2009, and if you click here to the first article I ever wrote on this site, you’ll see that reason #3 for my trip was to get an “open heart for love.” In other words, before I left the country to see the world, I was in a romantic rut.

Wedding hair and makeup took hours, and you can see why!

Wedding hair and makeup took hours, and you can see why!

So did it actually work for roaming five continents alone to open my heart to brilliant love? YES! If you click to the story of our romantic meeting and engagement, you’ll see that I met Colin at my “Welcome Back to America” party, the week I returned back to America after circumnavigating the globe. Yippee!

Colin and his father had much pre-wedding prep, too, including careful tie straightening.

Colin and his father had much pre-wedding prep, too, including careful collar straightening.

This brings us to the second reason it is fitting that my 500th article on this site comes now: the national Meet, Plan, Go! Career-Break Travel conference is almost here! Since career-break travel completely transformed my life, in 2010 I volunteered to become the Boston coordinator for this amazing movement.

After the "First Look" we were ready to get married!

After the “First Look” we were ready to get married!

Okay, let’s just pause for a moment and take in the awesomeness of the next photo. It comes from the Bedeken ritual of our Jewish wedding, which I shall explain in a subsequent article, but for now, admire how beautifully our photographer Krista captured the love on everyone’s face.

The expression on everyone's face in this photo is amazing. We love our families!

The expressions in this photo are wonderful. We love our families!

And now for a totally hilarious photo…

Hahahah! "Now let's take a crazy photo," commanded Krista. Our wedding party obliged.

“Now let’s take a crazy photo,” commanded Krista. Our wedding party obliged. Hah!

And what of our wedding ceremony itself? Our Cantor did a masterful job weaving together tradition, history, poetry, song, and personal details about us and our families (including our penchant for eating massive piles of vegetables, and our adoration of the reality TV show, “The Voice!”)

The ceremony was awesome! Colin's childhood Cantor from Ohio officiated.

The ceremony was awesome! Colin’s childhood Cantor from Ohio officiated.

Speaking of reality TV, if you haven’t checked it out already, click here to read about then see our wedding on the TV show “I Found the Gown!” It was a surprisingly delightful experience.

After the reception we were announced to the main dining room! I made very clear to the DJ that I am keeping my name, so we each have different last names.

After the reception we were announced to the main dining room! I made very clear to the DJ that I am keeping my name, so Colin and I have different last names.

Something we did that we highly recommend is that Colin and I were the MCs of our own wedding. As we are both teachers, we love commanding a crowd, and this was our big day! We meticulously planned out and introduced all 16 speeches from our loved ones during dinner, and relished every second of it. We also DID make sure to eat, despite everyone telling us we wouldn’t have time to.

Amazing speeches abounded throughout dinner... 16 to be exact, with not a single dud among them!

Stunning speeches abounded throughout dinner… 16 to be exact, with not a single dud among them!

Though some people warned us we would be “too tired” to MC our wedding, we felt much more relaxed having full control of proceedings, and were actually energized by the experience. But speaking of energy… the most phenomenal moment of the whole night was when my father surprised us by leading a SING-AND-DANCE-ALONG with all 100 guests to the Bill Withers song, “I Wish You Well!”

The absolute highlight was when my father led a SING-ALONG to "I Wish You Well" by Bill Withers!

The absolute highlight was when my father led a SING-ALONG to “I Wish You Well” by Bill Withers!

To anyone who is planning a wedding or making a toast at one, DO consider a sing-and-dance-along.

As my father said, “Everyone here wants to wish you well, but we don’t have time for 100 speeches… so let’s all sing it and act it out with our dancing!”

AMAZING.

We were SO HAPPY! A sing-and-dance-along??? AMAZING!!!!

We were SO HAPPY! A sing-and-dance-along??? LOVE IT!!!!

Look at the photo to the right to see how happy we all were after the song. Sing it, Bill:

“I wish you flowers, sunshine, and smiles…
I wish you children that grow to make you proud.
I wish you pretty things to wear…
Sweet things to smell.

I wish you good friends that always treat you fair…
Wanna wish you ribbons to tie around your hair.
I wish you truckloads of cheer,
and many happy years!

I wish you freedom to do the things you love…
Wanna wish you blessings and kindness from above.
Wanna wish you sunlight through the clouds…
I hope you laugh out loud!

I wish you well!
(Oh I wish you well)!
I wish you well (wellllllllllllllllll)!”

Giant thanks to everyone and everything who made our marriage and these 500 articles possible!

Giant thanks to everyone who made our marriage and these 500 articles possible!

So what is the third and final reason I’m so happy this 500th article came at this precise time? As you likely know, I’m a teacher, and the 2012-13 school year just started!

Do you know how effective it is for a teacher to tell her students, “I will make you write a lot, but since I’ve already written FIVE HUNDRED articles on one of my websites, plus TWO HUNDRED on my other other one, I have no mercy for you saying six pages is too long!” Bwahahahah! :)

It was a happy day!

It was a happy day! Here’s to continued and ever-growing love, and to hundreds more articles!

Thanks to all of you readers who have made these first five hundred articles so fun to share. I LOVE your comments, and I can’t wait to continue this journey with you!

Colin's
Our Wedding Was on a Reality TV Show?!
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Karynna A.

Friday 9th of January 2015

Wow! Your wedding pictures are amazing! I am so happy for you and how you got the chance to show off your dream day on television! Congrats on completing over 500 articles already!

Soledad DF

Wednesday 7th of January 2015

I love this article! You look so pretty in your wedding dress :)

Wilson Samuel

Monday 28th of October 2013

Nice post.. may you live Happily Ever After!

Btw, please keep us updated with your new family member and his arrival :-)

Lillie

Monday 28th of October 2013

Thanks, and will do!

Diana Olsen

Sunday 21st of July 2013

It's been over two decades since I saw your mother- and father-in-law (ditto your adorable husband in diapers!) but your writings and photos always make me remember Diane and Estes and the good times we had when we were making our way in the world. Cheers for social media and people like you who are willing to share their lives so the rest of us can dream!

Lillie

Sunday 21st of July 2013

Thanks so much, Diana!

Rachel

Thursday 13th of June 2013

GORGEOUS! I love your dress so much!!

Lillie

Thursday 13th of June 2013

Thanks, ma'am! I'm actually in the process of trying to sell it now, as I want it to make another bride as happy as it made me!

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