Posted by: Hil | July 29, 2008

Anniversary Reminiscing


On August 4, 2007, the husband and I were married at his beautiful church just outside of Seattle, WA.  Next Monday, we will be celebrating our first anniversary.  So much hype and craziness and stress and mythology goes into weddings.  People buy into the idea that it has to be lavish and perfect, and that’s just not true.  I was a complete stress case the month before our wedding, and the husband kept telling me, “It’ll be fine!  At the end of it, we’ll be married, and nothing else matters.”  Sweet though the sentiment was, this was little comfort to me as I ran about frantically trying to coordinate florists, photographers and guest lists.  “Easy for you to say!”  I would tell him.  “Nobody will blame you if things go wrong.”

When it came down to it, our wedding was far from perfect.  But it was wonderful.  And I felt downright sad that I’d been so hard on myself.  (And for the record, I’m in favor of tar-and-feathering whoever came up with the idea that brides need to lose 20 pounds by their wedding in order to be presentable.  Any person, book, or magazine that even hints that your wedding will be more or less special depending on your weight or dress size should be summarily drop-kicked.  Brides-to-be:  buy a dress that fits you now and rock it.  If you do lose weight, you will probably be too pleased to care about the alteration bill.)

Honestly, things turned out better than I could have imagined.  Top left:  I got a beautiful, simple silk dress on clearance.  In the background you can see the grounds of the church.  Seattle is gorgeous during the summer.  Top right:  My mom did my hair for me.  I refused to wear a veil, much to the dismay of traditionalists everywhere.  But I see no reason to run around with a goofy piece of fabric pinned to my head.  A simple French twist with flowers was much more my style.   Bottom right:  I loved my bouquet.  Blue is my favorite color, and the wonderful Anne Bradfield of Floressence Design found flowers in exactly the shades that I wanted.  Bottom left:  my little cousins were really excited to participate as flower girl, ring bearer and candle lighters.  Blueberry Sis was my maid of honor.



And of course I have to mention the FOOD!


We had the worst time finding a caterer at first.  We wanted a festive, elegant, healthy lunch menu that would still be accessible to children and extremely picky eaters.  We wanted plenty of vegetarian options.  And we informed our prospective caterers that there were to be absolutely no nuts, peanuts, peanut oil, soybean oil, tofu, sulfur dioxide, squash, zucchini or legumes of any kind in the food…my family is full of people with severe food allergies and the risk of cross-contamination with those foods was just too great.  Furthermore, we had a number of relatives who could not consume alcohol for religious reasons, even in food, so we wanted to avoid using any kind of alcohol based sauces or marinades in the main dishes.  And we were on a budget.

Understandably, most caterers balked when they heard our list of restrictions.  One caterer suggested that my sister might just be claiming to be allergic to foods that she didn’t like!  Then we met Noreen, who instantly helped us craft a delicious menu that met all of our requirements.  And she did it for the lowest price anyone quoted us.  Here is the menu she helped us design:


  • Panko-fried artichoke hearts served with hollandaise sauce
  • Brie en croute
  • Greek phyllo topped with olive oil, garlic, spinach, and feta cheese, then baked until golden
  • Deviled eggs  
  • Mini quiches (vegetarian)
  • Fresh vegetable platter


Main Courses

  • London Broil served with a creamy béarnaise sauce on the side
  • Chicken Parmesan (with Noreen’s fabulous homemade marinara)
  • Fettucini and penne pastas served side-by-side with homemade marinara and Alfredo sauces



  • Citrus glazed asparagus
  • Steamed carrots with fresh herbs
  • Fruit kabobs
  • Mixed green salad
  • Bread sticks and foccacia basted with butter and fresh herbs



We were very happy.  The food was delicious and all of the guests with dietary restrictions were thanking me all day for having so many great options for them.  I was so happy that we managed to come up with a menu that all of our guests could enjoy together.


Then there was the cake.  Our amazing, decadent vanilla and chocolate zebra cake with white chocolate cream cheese frosting.  I do not like cake as a general rule, but this cake tasted like dark chocolate-swirled heaven.  The cake was made by the mother of one of my bridesmaids.  She is a brain researcher by profession, but she is an amazing cook and baker, and she generously agreed to bake a cake for us free of charge.  It blew away anything I have ever tasted in a commercial bakery.  We served each cake slice alongside a white and dark chocolate dipped strawberry.


The husband loves zebra cake, but hates frosting.  As a result, I fear that I was a bit more excited to dig into the cake than he was.  You can see in the picture that he seems a bit more interested in my reaction to the cake than the cake itself.  I fed him a bite with minimal frosting.


And in the end, we were married, and that really was all that mattered.




  1. Hi, You both look incredibly happy in your pictures. Beautiful flowers, too. Happy Anniversary from one blogger to another.

    – Heather

  2. What a lovely reminiscence. I’m crying! Happy Anniversary to a really cool couple.

  3. so touching and beautiful! congratulations to you both!

  4. 😀

  5. That are very nice shots! The photographer captured the important scene in the anniversary of the couple! Very nice!

  6. LOVED the wedding recap!!!!!!!! It was gorgeous. You were stunning 🙂

  7. Wishing you a VERY happy anniversary (well, a few days early, haha) – here’s to many more years/a lifetime together for you two!!

  8. Thank you so much to everyone for the kind words…you all really brightened my day!

    And special thanks to “Blueberry Ma” for delurking. 😉

  9. You look absolutely beautiful in those photos! And I’m with you on the veil – your mom did a wonderful job on your hair and it was too pretty not to let it all show!

    The cake looks so delicious, too!

    Happy early anniversary – and congrats on the first year!

  10. What a wonderful post! And your wedding was so classy- I cannot believe the dress and your hair!

    Your wedding sounds exactly like what I want- simple and gracious, not showy and Vegas-like like so many these days.

    You both look fantastic! Happy aniversary to you!

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