Saturday was a beautiful day. Period. But throw in a wedding and you've got yourself the perfect day. So many family members came together to make this day super special for my sweet cousin and his beautiful bride.
This little man RAN to his uncle's arms as soon as he arrived! He loves his Uncle Ross BIG TIME. He was never more than arm's reach from him the whole evening, which makes Uncle Ross beam with happiness because he feels the same about this little man.
It's wedding time and the mother of the groom is frantically looking for the groom. Not really, but it WAS wedding time and she WAS on her phone and the groom WAS NOT there yet. But that's ok because he arrived and the weather was PERFECT for a beautiful outdoor wedding.
I love this picture because it shows the bride on her dad's arm, but also the historical marker for the venue. We were at the Turnverein Pavilion in Bellville, Texas. It's a magnificent building built in 1897. The same man who designed and built it, also built the pavilion in Cat Spring where my uncle Wayne and his bride had their reception. LOVE old buildings with history!
The audience was ready for a ceremony!
You can see where my husband's focus was – pretty much all evening. He loved every minute of it too!
Yes – mom will shoot me for this picture. But I don't care. I have to brag on all of my family at this point. You see – my family is different. We are not average. My family believes in the One True God and we are not ashamed of that. We hold each other dear and tell each other we love each other. And we say it as often as we can – although that's still not enough. My parents, faults and all, have been married for almost 50 years. 47 years to be exact. But they are not alone. My aunts and uncles have all been married a long time. All of them. And that makes me proud to be a member of this family. But not only that – our extended family (their cousins) have all been married for a long time. There's a pattern here – a legacy that is being built. They have not all had easy marriages – I can't think of one of them that would say marriage has been easy for them. But they've all stuck with their spouse through the hard times, as well as the good times. There have been many of both in our family. I can tell you right now that one statement that was uttered by my cousin years ago at a family reunion is THE REASON I am still married today. She said she was thankful "to have been raised in a family where divorce is not an option." And that one statement, that one legacy that is being passed down to my generation, and the next – held my marriage together more times than I care to admit. But what an amazing blessing that it did because today I am happy to have been married to my sweet "Uncle Ross" for almost 27 years. We'll be together "until death do us part". And so will my parents. And so will my aunts and uncles. And there is a measure of security in that.
And so I thought about that amazing legacy being constructed in our family as this wedding proceeded.
A judge married these two. His ceremony was quite unique. He had each hold each others hands in the palm of their own, each taking a turn. As the bride held Johnnie's hands, and vice versa, the judge told them that (and I'll paraphrase, but you'll get the gist) these were the hands that would wipe away your tears in hard times, would hold you up during those hard times, would catch you when you fall, would celebrate you when you succeed. I thought that was beautiful that he did that because it's so true. Our hands are made to serve others. And each other.
This is my (and the groom's) uncle. He's dressed as he almost always is – shorts and crocs – WITH SOCKS. And he doesn't care that this isn't socially acceptable among most people. He worked as hard as anyone on this wedding day. He cooked almost all of the food himself. He had help, but he was the chief cook. And look at him – he's here during the ceremony getting good pictures of the family as the ceremony proceeded. He loves bigger than I can describe. This man would do anything for any member of his family and that is probably an understatement. I love him big is also an understatement.
And this. These are my people. These are the grandchildren of Ernie & Dorothy Lain. Ernie & Dorothy had 6 children and there are 15 grandchildren. I'm not even going to attempt to calculate great-grandchildren. But here are all the grandchildren who were at this wedding, plus the bride. She snuck in there. But I love each of these cousins of mine. They are unique and so full of LIFE. Getting together with them is always fun – doesn't happen often enough.
Don't let anyone EVER tell you that Texas Rangers don't have fun. Here's a captain in his finest attire.
And then you have the 3 stooges. Good grief they were LIT UP after the piñata!
This grandpa is smitten with his sweet girl! She is just a beautiful little thing isn't she?!
Love this picture too. Amber – these 3 boys will take good care of you! You didn't just get one Wiebold man – you got them ALL! May God bless your marriage as He has the rest of the Lain marriages. We love you and Johnnie!