Confessions of a 20-something mother

Talk about anything under the sun or stars - but keep it civil. This is where we really get to know each other. Everyone is welcome, and invited!
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Wind Swept
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Postby Wind Swept » Fri Jun 03, 2011 7:55 am


[...] No. I was always somehow stuck in the wilderness in charge of a band of courageous make-believe siblings trying to live off the land and hide from various people. Or I was a spy. Or a vet. Or Laura Ingalls. My Barbies weren't princesses, either. Some of the My Little Ponies, were, though, now that I think about it. But they weren't passive or helpless. Actually, the princesses were rather stuck up and snotty, and the non-princess ponies tended to be the heroes of the narrative. But then, the Princess culture hadn't really taken off at that point. It's a bit scary.
This makes me realize I don't remember much of anything I made up as a child. One more reason to build a time machine.
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Postby Jayelle » Fri Jun 03, 2011 10:14 am


I think I'm going to ask my midwife if there are any volunteer doulas around, because I know I need someone on that front.
Doulas-in-training often work for free (they need a certain # of births before certification). That's what I did both times.
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Postby Eaquae Legit » Fri Jun 03, 2011 10:17 am

My sister is going to start training, I believe. I'm so proud of her, I know she'll be great! I just wish she were here, or my mom. Actually, if I knew for certain that my mom would be here, I probably wouldn't look for a doula, but I know I WILL need someone.
"Only for today, I will devote 10 minutes of my time to some good reading, remembering that just as food is necessary to the life of the body, so good reading is necessary to the life of the soul." -- Pope John XXIII

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Postby zeroguy » Sat Jun 04, 2011 10:49 pm

A little while ago I realized I couldn't really remember anything from "Reading Rainbow". I mean, I remembered the opening sequence and song and I remembered Levar Burton, but I didn't remember what the actual content of the show was. That is, what happened after/inbetween Levar Burton talking in random locations.

I looked for some clips on youtube, but it still doesn't seem very familiar. But it also took at least around 3 clips to find anything actually related to books.

So, confession: I watched a lot of Reading Rainbow when I was a kid, but I apparently barely remember any of it.
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Postby mr_thebrain » Sun Jun 05, 2011 9:22 am

yeah, i have the same RR problem.

but the opening sequence, music, and lavar still make it a great show!
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Postby Yebra » Sun Jun 05, 2011 2:42 pm

Yebra: A cross between a zebra and something that fancied a zebra.

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Postby Mich » Sun Jun 05, 2011 7:28 pm

Vaguely? That is the most appropriate video I think I've ever seen.
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Postby Petrie » Mon Jun 06, 2011 2:45 pm

My dad works for DES, so he sees a lot of job postings at work. A lot. Ever since my probation ended, he has been asking me a lot of questions about my plans. To him, the library was just something to do in the meantime. He's not entirely wrong about that but for me, it is something to do in AZ, in the meantime.

He sent me a job posting today, for here. It would put me back at my old salary. A real salary. M-F. It's a very good job. I would love the job. If I were planning to stay here. But, I'm not.



Now I'm wondering if I shouldn't apply because "What if I can't make Chicago work? What if no one there wants to hire me? What if I get stuck here and if I don't apply for this job, I'll be making a lot less money than I know I can make, in a job that is stressful and frustrating more often than not."


My confession is that I'm scared I'm going to fail at the one thing I want more than anything, that I'll be stuck here forever in a dead end quasi-life, and that it'll be all my fault, due to mistakes I've made based on poor judgment and bad decisions.

I'm also scared I'll never live my life for me and that I'll always do what my parents want, just to make them happy.
So raise your glass if you are wrong in all the right ways, all my underdogs.

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Postby mr_thebrain » Mon Jun 06, 2011 5:07 pm

having been to chicago several times, i gotta say i don't see the appeal. nice to visit from time to time... maybe once or twice a year.

then i'm more of a live a bit away from the big cities but close enough to visit them sorta people. i absolutely love that i'm 40 minutes from madison, 60 minutes from milwaukee, and 2 hours from chicago. for so many reasons.

as for the work thing.... do what makes you happy. and strive to achieve your dreams.... cuz as dreams go, moving to chicago isn't a very difficult one to achieve... you should be just fine, whatever you decide to do.

still. is it not possible to take a new job and still work towards your ultimate goal of moving?
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Postby Petrie » Mon Jun 06, 2011 5:27 pm

having been to chicago several times, i gotta say i don't see the appeal.
*sigh* No one ever does. I hate bringing it up now, with most anyone, because of this.

then i'm more of a live a bit away from the big cities but close enough to visit them sorta people.
I live 3 hours from Phoenix and San Diego, 4 from Tucson, and 5 from Vegas. But I can't drive myself there, both because I'm low on funds and because I don't have my own vehicle. I can't really take public transportation as the only real form of it is Greyhound and that takes 2-3 times as long as necessary to get anywhere, making it so not worth it. This place is the pits. Politically, culturally/entertainment...ally?

as for the work thing.... do what makes you happy.
I did once. That kind of...backfired on me.

I'm not unhappy at the library but I could be happier and a lot of that is to do with money. I'm also not dumb enough to think that the stress I get from work won't follow me; that's just my personality type, though I will be fair and say my admin could be smarter about how they handle things.

as dreams go, moving to chicago isn't a very difficult one to achieve
I know what you mean and I swear I'm not trying to be a girl and twist s*** around but that makes it seem so lame :P
is it not possible to take a new job and still work towards your ultimate goal of moving?
I've been planning to move in 2012 for the past two years. I had planned to move well before that but the whole losing my job and not being able to build up more of a savings/safety net screwed me over.

I think it would be highly unfair to take a job I know I wouldn't be sticking at for more than a year and even if I did have to stick it out longer because I couldn't find work in Chicago, I think it makes me look flaky, not staying at one position for more than two years.
So raise your glass if you are wrong in all the right ways, all my underdogs.

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Postby Mich » Mon Jun 06, 2011 7:59 pm

It really bugs me when amateur writers talk about their characters as if they are real, and possibly because they do it way more than published writers do it. "So-and-so really surprised me today--" "--and so-and-so is really going to hate me for that!" "I really can't believe so-and-so did that."

Maybe it's because I've never really been able to reach that level of believability in my own characters when I write them. Like, I think of them as their own people, I suppose. I know, after years of experience, that I'm almost aggravatingly good at empathizing with people and coming up with opposing viewpoints and playing them out, and knowing what individual characters (of my own creation) would do in situations, and how they are subtly different from the others. But it really grates me that many amateur writers (and of course I'm thinking of a specific person [not a P-Webber] here, but it's only because I'm editing his novel and it's horribly horribly annoying to edit) act as if their characters are real people that they are forcing into situations, and that there is no line between a written character and a real person.

/elitist rant
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Postby Young Val » Mon Jun 06, 2011 8:45 pm

It really bugs me when amateur writers talk about their characters as if they are real, and possibly because they do it way more than published writers do it. "So-and-so really surprised me today--" "--and so-and-so is really going to hate me for that!" "I really can't believe so-and-so did that."

Maybe it's because I've never really been able to reach that level of believability in my own characters when I write them. Like, I think of them as their own people, I suppose. I know, after years of experience, that I'm almost aggravatingly good at empathizing with people and coming up with opposing viewpoints and playing them out, and knowing what individual characters (of my own creation) would do in situations, and how they are subtly different from the others. But it really grates me that many amateur writers (and of course I'm thinking of a specific person [not a P-Webber] here, but it's only because I'm editing his novel and it's horribly horribly annoying to edit) act as if their characters are real people that they are forcing into situations, and that there is no line between a written character and a real person.

/elitist rant
I talk about this a lot both privately and professionally. I was never one of those people until working on my latest writing project. I freely admit now that I have three characters who "talk" to me. They appear in my mind, usually quite at their ease, and, man, they let me have it. This is weird and I'm a little embarrassed about it, because it's never happened to me before, and I used to think that people who carried on lengthy conversations with their characters were pretentious idiots. That may still hold true, and now I've just joined their ranks. (I never, though, refer to things my characters have said or done in casual conversation. Why do people do this? It's like referring to celebrities on a first name basis). Mostly, though, my writing process is a lot like you describe: careful consideration of multiple angles and a lot of empathy and attention to detail. I think my notoriously over-active imagination has been kicking in lately because I have NO IDEA WHAT I'M DOING as far as this project goes and this is the way my brain wants to work it out. So far, it's successful, so I'll just continue to be embarrassed.

The glaring problem is what you mention in your last sentence. Characters (whether you're conversing with them outside the context of your novel or otherwise) should never be forced into doing anything, and if you must force them into doing something, then your book is probably terrible; if you choose to force them into doing something rather than allowing the story to unfold organically--be it because you're too lazy to work hard, or too in love with your own failed ideas--then you're probably a terrible writer. I say this flat-out to writers all the time, and a lot of them think I'm harsh because of it. Still, I've had so many writers come to me after taking some time and space to look at the story objectively and tell me they've had positive things come out of my buzz kill. So I'll just keep telling it like it is. :D
you snooze, you lose
well I have snozzed and lost
I'm pushing through
I'll disregard the cost
I hear the bells
so fascinating and
I'll slug it out
I'm sick of waiting
and I can
hear the bells are
ringing joyful and triumphant

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Postby steph » Mon Jun 06, 2011 9:19 pm

The glaring problem is what you mention in your last sentence. Characters (whether you're conversing with them outside the context of your novel or otherwise) should never be forced into doing anything, and if you must force them into doing something, then your book is probably terrible; if you choose to force them into doing something rather than allowing the story to unfold organically--be it because you're too lazy to work hard, or too in love with your own failed ideas--then you're probably a terrible writer. I say this flat-out to writers all the time, and a lot of them think I'm harsh because of it. Still, I've had so many writers come to me after taking some time and space to look at the story objectively and tell me they've had positive things come out of my buzz kill. So I'll just keep telling it like it is. :D
I have nothing to do with the industry whatsoever, so my opinion doesn't count for much, but I COMPLETELY agree with you.
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I see so much magic, though I missed it at the time." - Jamie Cullum

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Postby Mich » Mon Jun 06, 2011 10:46 pm

Man, thanks Kelly. That was a sweet little essay to read on the subject, and you would know, wouldn't you? I suppose the second, hidden confession is that I worry that it means I'll never be as good of a writer as I hope to be if I'm still assuming writers who do that are pretentious. I may have also said that in the first post, but NEVER LOOK BACK, NEVER EDIT is my motto.

Disclaimer: that may not be my motto.

But, oh man, maybe I should have complained about people who feel the need to tell you what their characters did. Because this guy does that all the time, which was why I've put off editing this manuscript for him for three whole years. Because, like, someone who talks like that probably isn't as interesting to read as they think. And now I can't decide if I was dead right, or if it was a self-fulfilling prophesy that I biased myself towards, because his writing is dead, dead boring. We're approaching some kind of climax and I'm reading about a mall trip that the characters have that contributes nothing to character development or plot advancement and I'm having trouble finding any kind of point.
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Row--row.

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Postby Caspian » Tue Jun 07, 2011 8:49 am

Confession: I LIKE getting up with my baby and walking around the apartment with her at 4am, singing her to sleep. It makes me feel like a good father.
It's not "noob" to rhyme with "boob". It's "newbie" to rhyme with "boobie".

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Postby Young Val » Tue Jun 07, 2011 9:18 am

Steph, if you read or love stories, then your opinion weighs a lot. People write because they have something to say. People read because they have something to seek. Sometimes one fuels the other, but neither is less or more important.

Jeff, glad my thoughts were helpful! As for your own secret fears, allow me to direct you to Dear Sugar's Write Like A Motherf*cker. And if and when you run into any poor, lost, obnoxious souls like the non-pweb friend you mentioned, feel free to highlight the section on humility for them.

Dear Sugar is kind of amazing in general, but that letter in particular killed me. "write like a motherf*cker" and "murder your darlings" and the following Salinger quote, these are the things that get me by:
I dread saying anything to you tonight, dear old Buddy, except the trite. Please follow your heart, win or lose. You got so mad at me when we were registering. . . Do you know what I was smiling at? You wrote down that you were a writer by profession. It sounded to me like the loveliest euphemism I had ever heard. When was writing ever your profession? It's never been anything but your religion. Never. I'm a little over-excited now. Since it is your religion, do you know what you will be asked when you die? But let me tell you first what you won't be asked. You won't be asked if you were working on a wonderful, moving piece of writing when you died. You won't be asked if it was long or short, sad or funny, published or unpublished. You won't be asked if you were in good or bad form while you were working on it. You won't even be asked if it was the one piece of writing you would have been working on if you had known your time would be up when it was finished--I think only poor Soren K. will get asked that. I'm so sure you'll get asked only two questions. Were most of your stars out? Were you busy writing your heart out? If only you knew how easy it would be for you to say yes to both questions. If only you'd remember before ever you sit down to write that you've been a reader long before you were ever a writer. You simply fix that fact in your mind, then sit very still and ask yourself, as a reader, what piece of writing in all the world Buddy Glass would most want to read if he had his heart's choice. The next step is terrible, but so simple I can hardly believe it as i write it. You just sit down shamelessly and write the thing yourself. I won't even underline that. It's too important to be underlined. Oh, dare to do it, Buddy! Trust your heart. You're a deserving craftsman. It would never betray you. Good night. I'm feeling very much over-excited now, and a little dramatic, but I think I'd give almost anything on earth to see you writing a something, an anything, a story, a poem, a tree, that was really and truly after your own heart.
-Seymour: an Introduction, J. D. Salinger
you snooze, you lose
well I have snozzed and lost
I'm pushing through
I'll disregard the cost
I hear the bells
so fascinating and
I'll slug it out
I'm sick of waiting
and I can
hear the bells are
ringing joyful and triumphant

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Postby Young Val » Wed Jun 08, 2011 7:16 pm

*Double post*

I think the sound of pouring ice water into thin glass is magical. When I was 17 I worked in a banquet hall. We served food for weddings, reunions, company parties, and the like. My favorite part was walking around the ballroom just moments before the guests entered, pouring ice water into each and every glass. The room was always otherwise silent, cavernous, and the sound of the water rushing in, the ice clinking against the glass, was so silvery and ethereal. I loved it.

The sound is almost never the same when I pour ice water into a glass at home. The glass isn't thin enough, the room doesn't have the proper acoustics. But sometimes, when I'm not concentrating, the stars will align and those perfect, bell-like tones will ring out from my glass. And I spend the next few moments grinning.
you snooze, you lose
well I have snozzed and lost
I'm pushing through
I'll disregard the cost
I hear the bells
so fascinating and
I'll slug it out
I'm sick of waiting
and I can
hear the bells are
ringing joyful and triumphant

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Postby VelvetElvis » Wed Jun 08, 2011 9:58 pm

I've been off my medication for a couple months now, and I can feel the depression swallowing me again. When someone notices, I say it's wedding stress, but I know it isn't, and soon I'll have to think of another excuse.
Yay, I'm a llama again!

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Postby Petrie » Thu Jun 09, 2011 12:29 am

*hugs for HBC* If it's not prying to ask, why not see a doctor about getting back on the or a similar medication? You really shouldn't have to think of excuses. You should feel better.
So raise your glass if you are wrong in all the right ways, all my underdogs.

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Postby Luet » Thu Jun 09, 2011 10:42 am

*hugs for HBC* If it's not prying to ask, why not see a doctor about getting back on the or a similar medication? You really shouldn't have to think of excuses. You should feel better.
This.
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Postby Eaquae Legit » Thu Jun 09, 2011 12:36 pm

Amen to that. Don't feel guilty about being sick. It's not your fault you have wonky chemicals!!
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Postby VelvetElvis » Thu Jun 09, 2011 1:13 pm

When I was first on it, it was wonderful, but as the years passed, the side effects got worse and worse. I wanted to come off the medication, because the side effects were really bothering me.

It's really just annoying every time some asks if I'm okay. Because, "No, I'm not okay like you think of okay, but it's usually like this. So yeah, nothing's wrong, I just have MDD" is a really long answer.
Yay, I'm a llama again!

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Postby Rei » Sat Jun 11, 2011 5:17 am

*hugs* Perhaps see about a different medication?

Confession: I am generally enjoying my fortnight of full-time volunteer work and have survived the first half despite inhaling several pounds of dust each day.
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Postby fawkes » Sat Jun 11, 2011 12:51 pm

Confession: I'm not even engaged yet, and I have a folder on my computer for wedding ideas...
Step one, take off your shirt. Step two ... Step three, PROFIT!

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Postby Petrie » Sat Jun 11, 2011 10:15 pm

Confession: I can't relate, not really, to engagement, wedding, being married/marriage, baby/kid conversations and although I'm very happy for my friends for experiencing these things and for being included in the conversation, it makes me feel...not left out, per se, not even unwelcome or uncomfortable even...but, well, I don't feel like I can relate to well over half of what's going on at Pweb and that makes me not want to be around so much since I can't contribute. It's like trying to talk to college students when you're still in jr high or high school; it's two whole different worlds.
So raise your glass if you are wrong in all the right ways, all my underdogs.

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Postby LilBee91 » Mon Jun 13, 2011 12:36 pm

Confession: Every time I hear a remotely beautiful piano piece, I hate myself for giving up lessons. I don't have the motivation to teach myself.
I used to hate gravity because it would not let me fly. Now I realize it is gravity that lets me stand.

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Postby Petrie » Wed Jun 15, 2011 8:44 pm

I try really, really hard not to judge people for any reason and while I sometimes fail in rather spectacular fashions, I'm not proud of myself when it happens. But this morning, I just could not help myself. This woman took her still-crawling, walking-with-the-aid-of-furniture child out of his stroller, placed him on the floor, pulled out her laptop, making sure to coo "Hey, baby!" and "Yes, baby!" and other motherly things every so often, and then disengaged long enough for him to make it from my department to the front door, then outside. If something hadn't been said to this mother, who knows how long it would have taken her to figure out her child was not inside anymore. This was the first time the baby made it outside but this is not the first time this mother has pulled this stunt of pretending to pay her child attention this way.

Confession: I totally judged.
So raise your glass if you are wrong in all the right ways, all my underdogs.

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Postby Luet » Wed Jun 15, 2011 8:47 pm

I don't think you should feel bad about judging in that situation.

Confession: I judge people who drive Hummers.
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Postby ender1 » Wed Jun 15, 2011 8:59 pm

Confession: I judge people who drive Hummers.
+1

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Postby steph » Wed Jun 15, 2011 9:12 pm

Confession: I judge people who drive Hummers.
+1
+10

During a snowstorm, without fail, I will see multiple H2s that have slid off the road. It's a far higher percentage of vehicles than even small sized sedans. It's pretty pathetic.
"When I look back on my ordinary, ordinary life,
I see so much magic, though I missed it at the time." - Jamie Cullum

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Postby powerfulcheese04 » Wed Jun 15, 2011 9:56 pm

When I meet people/talk to people/read books/watch TV, part of my brain is evaluating names for whether or not I would name a child that.

Off the list: Jennifer, Lauren, Amanda, Matthew, Mark, piper, John, Luke, Tiffany

Possibilities: Elizabeth Michelle, James Andrew, Sarah Katherine

Animal names: imri, sidonie, Neil, Zack Addy (though Nate will never let me on that one)
-Kim

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Postby Dr. Mobius » Wed Jun 15, 2011 9:59 pm

Joshua Andrew
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Petra456
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Postby Petra456 » Wed Jun 15, 2011 10:16 pm

I try really, really hard not to judge people for any reason and while I sometimes fail in rather spectacular fashions, I'm not proud of myself when it happens. But this morning, I just could not help myself. This woman took her still-crawling, walking-with-the-aid-of-furniture child out of his stroller, placed him on the floor, pulled out her laptop, making sure to coo "Hey, baby!" and "Yes, baby!" and other motherly things every so often, and then disengaged long enough for him to make it from my department to the front door, then outside. If something hadn't been said to this mother, who knows how long it would have taken her to figure out her child was not inside anymore. This was the first time the baby made it outside but this is not the first time this mother has pulled this stunt of pretending to pay her child attention this way.

Confession: I totally judged.
We have mothers that i'm sure think we're a day care at work. They come in, grab a bunch of stuff to try on, and never pay attention to their children. We've actually had a two year old make it outside our door and start walking around the VERY busy parking lot. Someone heading in saw the child and brought them in. Once the kid was returned to his mother she then spanked him (very hard) and screamed at him. We actually had people call the cops on her.
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And there will come a time, you'll see, with no more tears.
And love will not break your heart, but dismiss your fears.
Get over your hill and see what you find there,
With grace in your heart and flowers in your hair.

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Postby VelvetElvis » Wed Jun 15, 2011 11:45 pm

Confession: our honeymoon was so terrible we came home two or three days early.

Confession: I console myself by stalking facebook for guest photos of the wedding. And I love them.

Confession: I fucking hate weddings now.
Yay, I'm a llama again!

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Eaquae Legit
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Postby Eaquae Legit » Thu Jun 16, 2011 4:54 am

I'm sorry to hear about the honeymoon. :( At least now you have a great excuse for a second honeymoon (or just a great first anniversary)! You made it back safe and you still get to be married, so at least there's that, although I know it doesn't make up for the frustration.

And yes, wedding photos are awesome. Have you found any with hilarious accidental photobombs? One of my favourites from our wedding is this totally random shot of the guests during the ceremony, except one of them is staring right at the camera like a psycho.
"Only for today, I will devote 10 minutes of my time to some good reading, remembering that just as food is necessary to the life of the body, so good reading is necessary to the life of the soul." -- Pope John XXIII


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