together at last

OUR WEDDING: PT. 2 | DISPOSABLE FILM

 
eating cake
wedding toast
one of the boys
mimi and haze
running to gurney
dancing with gurney

Though the general ethic of our wedding celebration centered on sustainability—that is to say, non-disposability—there was one exception we were willing to make: disposable cameras. 

Film photography has played a special role in documenting our relationship & our lives, and we had hoped it could play into our wedding plans in some way or another. Due in part to our decision to change the date on very short notice, we ended up with what amounted to "crowdsourced" wedding photos. With a couple of very talented photographer friends leading the way, DSLRs in hand, our wedding guests captured the action themselves using cheap drug store cameras. 

Yesterday, when we went to pick up the film—with that bygone feeling of unknowing anticipation that comes with waiting to have your photos developed—we were overjoyed to discover rolls that had turned out even better than we had expected. In placing cameras in the hands of everyone rather than one, we are now able to (re)live so many beloved moments & faces that we may have missed the first time around. 


—M&S

OUR WEDDING: PT. 1 | THE ETHIC OF SEASONAL

 

On a not-too-cold, overcast January day, we were married. With only our nearest and dearest family and friends present, George Harrison, Marvin Gaye, and Duke Ellington sang + played all day long. We foraged, found, or borrowed everything, and we had eight pounds of coffee at the ready. There were tears—my word, so many tears—and a smooch to seal the deal. Our send off was a full group circle singalong to 'Rocky Raccoon'—a longtime dream of mine. With these things and with so much more we were wed. While I simply cannot describe the day in full, I do intend to write on the facets that made it so rich. Our inclination was correct: simplicity and joy marry quite well with sustainability and seasonality. Excuse the pun.

Save for the disposable cameras lying about, there was nothing disposable about our wedding. We spent many hours ensuring nothing—except people—traveled far to join us for our celebration. Our ethics as a couple are deeply centered around seasonality. It is our ardent belief that choice in life should be dictated by nature. Only in recent years have we even had the option of deviating from Mother Nature's seasonal offerings. The myriad of expectation that wedding websites, Instagram, and American culture place on the engaged couple are unbelievable. As for Mark and I, we are surrounded by family who believe in the ethic of small, of simple, of paring down to the necessities. Our top priorities were to remain local, to source seasonally, and to spend money on a new product if and only if it was made by an artisan we got to know personally. (To that point, I cannot wait to share in a future post about our shoes and our rings.)

leah with flowers

A branch that Mark had found out in the woods hung with prominence. Hops that I'd gathered off the table at a conference lined the table and accented my flower crown. Mark and I made french presses using locally-roasted coffee and served our loved ones as they held their mugs out. Pieces of honeycomb from our hive lined the windowsill. My mama and I picked out each plate and bowl from Goodwill, and have since donated all of them back. 

There were a smattering of cloth napkins in my great-grandma's market basket, which sat atop a wooden chair built by my great-grandpa, her husband. My new mama-in-law baked our wedding cake: her famous coconut cake, unassuming and perfect in form. All greenery and flowers were 100% in season—most everything was picked up from a nearby flower grower, and some of it was foraged. With the help of my mama-in-law and her sister, we made gorgeous, fragrant, textural bouquets. Below, I've listed everything we used to do so, just in case you get the hankering to build your own wedding / party / bouquet.


WEDDING BOUQUET: HOW-TO

In lieu of listing formal steps, my recommendation is to check out a few books on floral design from the library, try to use color and texture to accentuate your centerpiece, and play around! Take it slow and do not give up. Make floral wire your friend. Everything we used came from Karen Geiser's farm in Kidron, Ohio, unless it has an * next to it, in which case it was purchased at Local Roots in Wooster, Ohio. Working with Karen was a dream. She let my mom and I tromp around her farm in muck boots, picking out anything we wanted to use for our January wedding. She is creative, and open, and authentic. If you're an Ohio bride... I cannot recommend her enough. Email me if you're interested in working with Karen or would like to learn more about my experience.

TOOLS
floral wire - in multiple sizes
garden snips or scissors
burlap or floral ribbon
twine

 

 

GREENS + FLOWERS
kale
scented geranium
curly willow branches
dried lavender*
rosemary*
dusty miller
bamboo
scotch pine


—S
other pieces pictured: pinched cups | french press coffee paddle

MARRIAGE | PREPARATIONS + PROVISIONS

 

Five weeks ago, more or less, we moved our wedding plans forward five months to January. Now we are getting married in five days. Life in the interim has been a whirlwind in the truest sense of the word. Chaotic, tiring, very special, and quite full (of everything). In the scope of our own existence, it seems that we are living in extraordinary times. Preparing mentally, emotionally, and spiritually for marriage has added a bit of gravitas to the daily agenda. 

Yet I have not felt a heaviness in this preparatory period. If anything, much peace has been found in the very ordinary routines & provisions of each day leading up to the big one. Indeed, both of us have taken up special preparations, for which we had not carved out time in the past. It would be silly to claim that we have not heightened our attention to body care routines, or that we have not expanded our efforts to transform my bachelor pad into a marital home. But I anticipate that most of those endeavors will return to the mean after our trip up the altar. More impactful, I think, has been the resurgence of a few habits of old. 

putting on a record

I have started making music again. That is, actually recording the music that floats around in my head but tends to lose out to something else, usually apathy. For whatever reason, I tend to listen more closely to the chord structures & rhythms of the universe when there is a lot going on in my life. (P.S. If you'd like to hear those sounds as I hear them, feel free to have a listen here.) 

The aroma and delightful crackle of fresh baked bread has returned to my kitchen, too. Perhaps the simple act of mixing flour, salt, water, and yeast in their proper proportions helps to maintain balance & order in my life. I do not know for sure, but it seems reasonable. What I do know is that the joy provided by a time-tested personal pursuit such as baking bread far exceeds any satisfaction I could obtain from limiting the amount of gluten or carbohydrates in my wedding diet. (Relevant notes: I am not on a wedding diet & the bread recipe is forthcoming.)

Beginning this weekend, so much is set to change in my life—like the ever-changing pattern of cracks & crevices along the surfaces of the breads I bake; like the ambient noise, made up of different daily traffic & weather patterns, heard faintly behind the vocals I record. And yet, so much is set to remain the same. Like the very importance of making music & baking bread. Like the love & commitment I have felt so deeply for the woman I am ready to call my wife.


—M