Posts Tagged With: wedding

Mexican Mayhem

Ever since I married into the family I have been a guest at my in-laws Italian Christmas party. Held every year on the Saturday before Christmas, the Italian side of the family gathers for feasting, cookie swapping and hooting over lucky scratch tickets. It’s a thing. It’s their thing. Now it has become my thing. Kisa and I will attempt to host, for the first time in history, The Party.
I am undaunted and unfazed by this turn of events. I’m approaching this party like I planned my wedding: by analyzing how it’s expected to go and doing it all backwards. My first dance was the last dance. My cake was a pie. My champagne toast was many Tuaca shots. I wore boots and a 13 horned hat. I did not throw my bouquet. I almost threw up from fear but ending up laughing outloud.

The Italian Christmas tradition is turning into Mexican Mayhem. We won’t be serving prime rib or swampy vegetables simmered too long. Instead we’ll have a buffet of mix and match fillers: chicken, beef, sofritas, shrimp, salsas, guacamole, rice and beans to fill tacos, burritos, quesadillas. A margarita bar and chili-chocolate chip cookies and cheesecake for dessert. Mustaches, sombreros, and holiday music south of the border style. That will teach ’em to nominate the Kisa and I to cook!

In other news (what else? Running!), here’s the lowdown: 71 miles to go. Covered so far this month:
12/1 = 6.55
12/4 = 9.15
12/6 = 7.00

I’m on track to finish this thing. I’m still not 100% confident and that makes me talk out loud. I ramble on about the numbers constantly. One thing I need to remind me & myself is not to rant too much around the Kisa. He thinks I’m obsessed. No. No, he doesn’t think. He knows I’m crazy. He watches my mouth and checks my eyes for lies. I know he’s looking for happiness; To make sure this is what I want & I’m psychologically sound doing it. Well, you know what ZZ Ward says, “‘Til the casket drops…’til my legs just break…” I’m going to keep going.

So. Having said all that. The agenda for this week: 6 tomorrow & 9 on Sunday. In between, baking Mexican shortbread and spicy sweet chocolate chip cookies to test. Buenas noches.

Categories: Confessional, Hilltop, Holidays, running | Tags: , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Every Last Drop (part 2)

When the Knight and I got married we didn’t hire a professional photographer. We didn’t want some stranger sticking a camera in our faces; fake smiling for someone we didn’t know. Instead we sent out a group plea a year before the date, “Are you good with a camera? Would you mind being our paparazzi for the day? We can’t pay you but we’ll buy all the film you need and do all the developing.” Five awesome photographers and two, no –  three videographers stepped up that day. It was the best decision we made concerning how to capture the day. Second best decision was the note attached to the disposable cameras at every table at the reception. “Scavenger hunt! Get pictures of these things: Maid of honor. Head chef. Bride’s boots. View from your hotel room. The table with the most creativity wins a prize.” Each table had a list that was slightly different. In the end we got pictures of things most newlyweds don’t – pictures of the reverend who married us, the bartender, Best Man West, Best Man East, the dinner… The photography scavenger hunt was such a success I have been playing the game on every vacation since. Here’s Hawaii’s “hunt” (Oahu only):

  • Picture of island from arriving airplane
  • rental car
  • Deep sea fishing boat
  • papa with a fish
  • Someone hula dancing
  • A veteran
  • view from hotel window
  • something yellow (the Oahu color)
  • State flag
  • Liberty bell
  • eternal flame
  • Kukui
  • pua’ilima
  • poi
  • toes in the sand
  • fruity drink
  • coconut
  • Ono pop
  • library
  • sunset


  • Nene
  • Monk seal
  • Trigger fish
  • yellow hibiscus
  • surfer
  • outrigger canoe
  • lava
  • ukelele
  • The words “the life of the land is perpetuated in righteousness”

Of course Maui will have its own scavenger hunt as well. I’m still working on the list. I imagine there will be some duplication (like view of the island from the arriving airplane, toes in the sand and view from hotel). Maui’s color is pink so I’ll be sure to add a pink hibiscus to the list.

Things I need to ask: 1) can I take pictures during a military ceremony? can Kisa take a picture of me getting my ink? can I borrow the underwater camera for pictures when we snuba? If there are positive answers to these questions I’ll be adding a few more challenges to the scavenger hunt!


Categories: Confessional, life | Tags: , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Rules of Romance

The Kisa and I went to a wedding this weekend. Syracuse. Well, not really. 45 minutes in a church was spent in Syracuse. Every other second was spent somewhere else. Cazenovia and the like.
Watching other people get married does weird things to me. I either daydream about my own crazy exchange of vows seven years ago or I fret about the mistakes being played out in front of me. I try to ignore the religious “thou shalts” and refrain from squirming in uncomfortable pews. I never expect to get anything out of the event. But, it was at this Syracuse ceremony that I learned the three rules of romance; the three must-have elements to a good marriage: loyalty, trust and love. Errr. No. I disagree. Not that those aren’t good things to have in a solid relationship of any sort. They’re just not the only things you gotta have. I would add three more (with alliteration, if you please): Compromise, communication and kindness.

Compromise: you scratch my back, I’ll scratch yours. Oldest trick in the book.
Communication: none of that “what’s wrong? Nothing’s wrong *sulk sulk sulk*” sh!t. Spit it out.
Kindness: If you can’t say something nice….In other words, say what you mean to say. Just find a not-so nasty way of getting your point across.

My father-in-law added his own spin on the big three: sex, drugs and rock and roll. My first thought was Um. no. Then well, maybe. Actually, he might be onto something, so I say yes, definitely yes.

I can hardly confess to having this romance thing sorted out 100%. Honestly. Obviously I have my opinions and I have a pretty good idea what works for me and mine. I’ve never thrown anything heavier than a shoe at him (and that was back in 1999 so it doesn’t really count. I think the statute of limitations has expired on that offense), but really, I can’t complain. And I won’t.


Categories: Confessional, life | Tags: , , , , , | 2 Comments

Just in Case


Just in case you forgot.

Categories: Confessional, photography | Tags: , , , , | 2 Comments

The Return of Days

There is no song out there that makes me happier than ‘These are Days’ by 10,000 Maniacs. Sung by Natalie Merchant (and only Ms Merchant) there is no other more poignant, perfect song for me.

Back in 1992 ‘These Are Days’ was the background music for one crazy summer. Finally graduating from college in May, breaking off a long-suffering, dying relationship in June, having my first steamy, honest-to-goodness, real summer fling in July and embarking on  a new life (in New Jersey of all places) in September. It was, without a doubt, the most perfect summer to be a girl on the verge.

When I got sick in 1998 ‘These are Days’ was my feel-good, make-me-smile video. Natalie dancing on top of the Chrysler building, flirting with the edge and the eagle’s beak. While I didn’t completely understand the rest of the video – the children in the woods, the idea of freedom pleased me to no end.

In 2004 I threw out conventional wedding practices, said to hell with tradition and walked down the aisle to a slow-tempo, piano-backed, serious ‘These Are Days’ sung by my good friend Rebecca Correia. Her voice and Natalie’s lyrics helped me walk past a hundred pairs of eyes and squelch the unreasonable, unfounded fear that I was making a mistake. It was a more upbeat and joyous ‘These Are Days’ to which Kisa and I practically danced our way out of the church.

‘These Are Days’ is on almost every ipod playlist I have ever created. Whether I am practicing yoga, running a 5k, walking 14 miles, cleaning the bathroom, cooking a meal, or weeding the garden, if I have music, I have ‘These Are Days.’ That song is always in there somewhere.

So, why prattle on so long about a seemingly silly song? Because Natalie brought ‘These Are Days’ back at a recent concert last week – performed it live. I cannot tell you how exited I am for the emergence of this slower, more melodic version of the song I love so much. I can only hope I hear it for myself on July 13th.

Categories: Confessional, life, music | Tags: , , , , , | Leave a comment

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