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Lauri’s Take on The Wedding

Dan and I have been meaning to write more about our wedding, but things have been a little chaotic since we have been back. Dan is working a lot this summer and I am keeping the kids entertained while they are home. Casper has half a post written for the blog, but just hasn’t been able to pin daddy down to finish it. So, in the meantime I thought I would share a little myself.

Those of you who are regular readers know that I have been married before and that the girls are not Dan’s biological kids. What you probably don’t know is that when I married their dad we eloped. It was a lovely ceremony at a B&B in Eureka Springs and I never regretted that decision, but this time I wanted more of a “real” wedding. If it were up to Dan we would have just gone to town hall and done it with no bells and whistles, but he knew it was important to me to have our families involved so he let me do a small, but slightly more traditional, wedding.

The initial plan was a Halloween wedding here in town and about 50-60 guests, but we changed all of that because I had been considering going back to school in the fall. We reduced the guest list to pretty much only immediate family and found a lovely venue in Branson. Nothing local did all the planning for you and I didn’t want to have to get too involved in it since we had such short time. Well, as you know, that didn’t work out. The place just didn’t feel comfortable about Casper and we were not pleased with them at all. I managed to throw together a wedding in less than a week. Didn’t think it could be done, but I guess I am magic!

It was chaotic up until the moment of the ceremony, but it all came together beautifully. Our loved ones were all there and even my bestie (we have been friends since we were 12) and her boys were able to make it out. Dan was so handsome in his suit and Casper looked pretty good too (of course!). We will have photos to share soon and will have a whole post of just amazing pics.

Our church’s associate minister, Tari Carbaugh, is an amazing woman and we asked her to perform the ceremony. She was only recently officially ordained so we were her first wedding. This woman is so filled with love and joy that you can’t help but adore her. I could not have wished for a better person to do the deed. (Just a side note that we also love our head minister and would have been very happy to have him perform it, but Tari has connected with us on a personal level outside of church as well so it made it even more special. Kevin Tully, we LOVE you. He is so smart, well spoken, funny, and caring. I truly enjoy his sermons and am getting a chance to know him personally lately as well. Okay…)

You may have noticed from our blog that Dan and I are not traditional people. We attend a United Methodist church now, but have switched around over the years and were raised in different Christian traditions. We also honor many ancient traditions in our daily lives that we feel put us closer to the Universe as a whole and also blend with the teachings of Christ. Not going to get into a religious post, don’t worry. We usually don’t talk a lot about politics or religion here since it just gets messy, but this applies to our wedding so wanted to say that much at least. Luckily this mix of ideas is embraced by our minister and she was very helpful in putting together a ceremony for us. She gave us a book that goes through all the parts of a ceremony and specifies which ones are optional and which are required to be a legally binding ceremony. I picked a few items from this book, but mainly used it as an outline. I found other resources from literature and online. We did a hand-fasting which I had to find online as well. Tari helped me tweak it a little so that things flowed well and it came out so beautiful. Many of our guests came up to her afterward and complimented it. She was quick to give me all the credit, but she did help a lot.

I really love how it all came out (it even made Dan tear up and then that made me tear up) so I want to share it with all of you if you are interested.

There will also be a post soon from Casper and photos.

Thanks for your patience,

Processional, “I Will” by The Beatles.

We have come together families and friends to witness Dan and Lauri as they exchange their vows of marriage. We share with them their delight in finding love with each other, and support their decision to be together from now until the end of time. As this couple enters into marriage, they do so with thought and reverence. They give thanks for the past, which brought them to this place, and look forward with hope to what the future will bring.


Loving and Beloved God\
From the beginning you have made us to live
In partnership with one another.
We pray for the presence of your Spirit with these two persons
Fill their hearts with sincerity and truth
As they enter this solemn covenant


1 Corinthians 13 reads…

I may speak in the tongues of men, even angels; but if I lack love, I have become merely a blaring brass or a cymbal clanging. I may have the gift of prophecy, I may fathom all mysteries, know all things, have all faith- enough to move mountains; but if I lack love, I am nothing. I may give away everything that I own, I may even hand over my body to be burned; but if I lack love, I gain nothing.
Love is patient and kind, not jealous, not boastful, not proud, rude or selfish, not easily angered, and it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not gloat over other people’s sins but takes its delight in the truth. Love always bears up, always trusts, always hopes, and always endures. Love never ends… But for now, three things last; trust, hope, love; and the greatest of these is love.

This marriage is a symbol of Lauri and Dan’s commitment to that love.


Lauri and Dan your marriage is intended to join you for life and I ask you now to join hands.

These are the hands of your best friend, young and strong and full of love for you, that are holding yours on your wedding day, as you promise to love each other today, tomorrow and forever.
These are the hands that will work alongside yours, as together you build your future.
These are the hands that will passionately love you and cherish you through the years, and with the slightest touch, will comfort you like no other.
These are the hands that will hold you when fear or grief fills your mind.
These are the hands that will countless times wipe the tears from your eyes; tears of sorrow and tears of joy.
These are the hands that will tenderly hold your children.
These are the hands that will help you to hold your family as one.
These are the hands that will give you strength when you need it.
And lastly, these are the hands that, even when wrinkled and aged, will still be reaching for yours, still giving the you same unspoken tenderness with just a touch.

 Hand in Hand you enter marriage, hand in hand you step out in faith. The hand you freely give to each other, is both the strongest and the most tender part of your body. In the years ahead you will need both strength and tenderness. Be firm in your commitment. Don’t let your grip become weak. And yet, be flexible as you go through change. Don’t let your hold become intolerable. Strength and tenderness, firm commitment and flexibility, of such is a marriage made, hand in hand.


Dan, will you have Lauri to be your wife

And will you love her faithfully as long as you both shall live?

            *I will*

Lauri, will you have Dan to be your husband

And will you love him faithfully as long as you both shall live?

            *I will*


The Creator loved us, and made us to love others. Our lives find completion only as we love and are loved in return. Together, we can become what we could never be separately. Marriage is of God.

Dan and Lauri, having spoken your intent to be joined in marriage, I ask you to please join hands and state your vows to one another.

I take you to be my husband from this time onward
To join with you and to share all that is to come
To give and to receive
To speak and to listen
To inspire and to respond
And in all our life together
To be loyal to you with my whole being
As long as we both shall live.*

I take you to be my wife from this time onward
To join with you and to share all that is to come
To give and to receive
To speak and to listen
To inspire and to respond
And in all our life together
To be loyal to you with my whole being
As long as we both shall live.*


From the earliest times, the circle has been a symbol of completeness, a symbol of committed love. An unbroken and never ending circle symbolizing a commitment of love that is also never ending. As often as either of you looks at this symbol, I hope that you will be reminded of the commitment to love each other, which you make today.


Dan, please place the ring on Lauri’s finger and repeat after me:

*I give you this ring as a sign of my love and faithfulness*

Lauri, please place the ring on Dan’s finger and repeat after me:

*I give you this ring as a sign of my love and faithfulness*

These two lives are now joined in one unbroken circle. Wherever they go, they will always return to one another in their togetherness. These two find in each other the love for which all men and women yearn. They promise to grow in understanding and in compassion. These rings, on their fingers, symbolize the love in their hearts.


Author, Simone Signoret, wrote, “Chains do not hold a marriage together. It is threads, hundreds of tiny threads, which sew people together through the years.”

 Dan and Lauri have chosen to conclude their ceremony with a traditional hand fasting ceremony. This is a symbolic binding of the hands that inspired the modern terms “Bonds of Holy Matrimony”, taking a bride’s “hand in marriage,” and  “Tying the knot.” Throughout history in many different ways and in many different parts of the world, the hands of the bride and groom were bound as a sign of their commitment to one another. This is a vivid reminder that in true Christian marriage our lives are merged, even as we remain individuals. This is a symbolic prayer that God will enhance your own personhood and bless your uniqueness as individuals: but that He will also make of your hands ONE hand…of your hearts ONE heart…and of your lives ONE life.

Dan and Lauri, I bid you to take each other’s right hand and look into each other’s eyes.
Will you honor and respect one another,
and seek to never break that honor?

*We will*

[the first cord is draped over the couples’ hands]

And so the first binding is made.

Will you share each other’s pain and seek to ease it?

*We will*

[Second cord is draped over the hands]

And so the binding is made

Will you share the burdens of each so that your spirits may grow in this union?

*We will*

[third cord is draped over the couples’ hands]

And so the binding is made.

Will you share each other’s laughter, and look for the brightness in life
and the positive in each other?

*We will.*

[forth cord is draped over the couples’ hands]

And so the binding is made.

[Tie cords together]

Lauri and Dan, as your hands are bound together now,
so your lives and spirits are joined in a union of love and trust.
Above you are the stars and below you is the earth.
Like the stars, your love should be a constant source of light,
and like the earth, a firm foundation from which to grow.


Apache Blessing

Now you will feel no rain,
for each of you will be shelter for the other.
Now you will feel no cold,
for each of you will be warmth to the other.
Now there will be no loneliness,
for each of you will be companion to the other.
Now you are two persons,
but there is only one life before you.
May beauty surround you both in the
journey ahead and through all the years,
May happiness be your companion and
your days together be good and long upon the earth.


Lauri and Dan, you have expressed your love to one another through the commitment and promises you have just made. It is with these in mind that I pronounce you husband and wife.
You have kissed a thousand times, maybe more.
But today the feeling is new.
No longer simply partners and best friends, you have become husband and wife and can now seal the agreement with a kiss.
Today, your kiss is a promise.

 You may kiss the bride.


May your joys be as bright as the morning, your years of happiness as numerous as the stars in the heavens, and your troubles but shadows that fade in the sunlight of love.

I am pleased to introduce to you, Mr. and Mrs. Dan and Lauri Schroll

Recessional: “Let My Love Open the Door” by Peter Townsend


Vacation: Part II

Hi Friends –

The plane touched down and we completed our flight. I got off the plane and was so happy I walked with a bounce in my step and a smile on my face. Dad asked why I was so happy. He thought I was scared on the plane or needed to go out. I said no way I just want to see the sandy eggos! I don’t know why Dad almost fell over laughing. He gathered himself and as kindly as he could, while still making fun explained that we were in San Diego a part of California to see my family; not in California to see sandy eggos, like some road-side attraction. I said it wasn’t MY fault, HE needs to annunciate better! With that Dad and I sat out of the way while Mom and the girls picked up our luggage.

After the luggage, we picked up the rental van. We soon learned why the name of the company was significant. Hertz, because it Hertz to have to drive in anything they rent you. This van made so many noises we prayed that the thing would keep running long enough to make it through the weekend. (I heard dad actually say a prayer that the car not die unti Monday; we’d be leaving on a Sunday!) The engine sounded like there was beach sand in the cylinders. The suspension bottomed out on anything steeper than a speed bump and to top it off the computerized displays were set to km/h. (Yes, the clock was even wrong.) To make this so much better we were on the I-5 in rush-hour traffic. This would be fine except for the fact that they needed to check into the hotel, find our room and unload the van, all before I add to the fact that I haven’t done my business in hours (about four) or had anything to eat all day. That list seems easy enough, but I haven’t mentioned that Dad’s parents were in the same hotel waiting for our arrival and they all needed to change clothes and meet Gramma and Grandpa, along with Aunt Carrie’s family for dinner reservations at a restaurant. I’m wasn’t sure how we would fit everything in. It turned out to be a race against time, but we made it all happen. Time may have, in fact turned wibbley wobbley to do it, but I even had time to meet Gramma and Grandpa before we followed them in the wrong direction to the restaurant. Don’t worry, Dad was smart and updated our GPS before we left and asked his sister for the name and address of the restaurant so we could find our way. We made the reservation and beat Gramma and Grandpa there. (Dinner smelled wonderful!)

The next day, after a great night’s sleep (for me, because I get to sleep in the kid’s bed when we stay in a hotel) we met Gramma and Grandpa at our room and we all piled in our van and went out for breakfast. The café was very welcoming and Dad said the had great food. (Again, I have to take his word for it.) Don’t worry, I had fun here too. I got to watch as Dad spilled coffee all over himself. He’s a bit jumpy, (to say it kindly) and this was timed perfectly! He turned to look out the open door to the patio at a few pedestrians while drinking coffee and holding a conversation with Grandpa. Just as the cup reached his lips, Alyssa drops Grandma’s phone on the metal covered table, causing a big crashing sound, and Dad to jump so big his butt actually left the seat! This caused coffee to come flowing from the cup all over his Brooks Brothers shirt and jeans. (It was a discounted shirt mom got huge discounts on while she was an employee, but she doesn’t work there anymore so he needs to be careful!) Dad doesn’t like to look a mess when it’s time to look presentable. He did a good job laughing it off within moments as he and Grandpa talked about “payback moments in parenting.” The rest of breakfast went smoothly and we left the café.

Once Dad and I made it to the sidewalk Mom alerted us that there were dogs approaching and since I can still be a bit reactive, especially if they bark at me, Mom talked to the guardian while dad and I made our plan to lessen the chances for an interaction. The other dogs were admitted barkers so their guardian made a wide swing around, but came in directly (within two feet) behind us. This caused what we tried to avoid. The dogs barked at me. I told them they were not being good boys and we ended up showing Grandma and Grandpa how I help Dad recover from a fall.

La Jolla Shore

La Jolla Shore

La Jolla

La Jolla

After I helped Dad recover we hopped in the rental and found, with the help of the GPS, the La Jolla shoreline. Here we enjoyed the coast and took some great pictures. The number of dogs out for walks and play dates was alarming for a week day so we opted to find a “no pets” activity. We loaded up again, and headed to the Birch Aquarium. We walked through and saw the exhibit while Grandpa chose to stay outside the gates and enjoy a cigar. After we finished and met back at the gate it was about lunch time. Grandma & Grandpa weren’t ready to eat yet so we dropped them back at their room and we found a place for the family to refuel. After lunch at a local deli (that Mom LOVED!!!) and a chance for me to “do my business” we also settled back to our rooms for a nap so we would be ready to go for the evening’s events… (to be continued in part 3 of our adventure)

View from the Birch Aquarium

View from the Birch Aquarium

Human Puppies at the Aquarium

Human Puppies at the Aquarium