Saturday, May 28, 2016

Daily Jamie

Gotta Love The Danish!

Jambo and I dropped The Swede off at the football match then hit up the Lego tour at Mall of Scandinavia this afternoon. This kid is obsessed with Legos and cannot wait to go to Legoland in Denmark this summer, so this preview was much appreciated.
They had a bunch of statues all over the place, plus stations with huge bins of Legos where you could build whatever you wanted. Even I got into it and made Jamie stay at one of the stations longer than he wanted to so I could finish the two-story house I was building. Two stories, guys.
Building something at each station got you a stamp on a card, which you could then take to the Lego store and collect a free kit, in this case a Star Wars space ship. This gave Jambo something to do while I took my sweet time eating a salad.
When Jamie dismounted from this deer I turned around to find a little girl from his school and her parents standing behind us. "You can't climb on those," she said, and her parents pointed at a sign at the base. I looked at the queue of kids waiting their turn to climb aboard and noted the sign. It was in Danish. I understood (it was way too close to Swedish not to) but insisted I didn't. Then we all had a good laugh about what an awesome parent I am. 

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Daily Jamie

Weekday Picnic

I can't remember if she invited us, or just mentioned her plans and I decided to crash them, but on Monday evening Jamie and I joined Linda and Sukai for a picnic during Alicia's handball practice. We packed up our blanket, cheese and crackers, cold chicken drumsticks, watermelon, and, most importantly, a couple of balls, and met up at the field near the middle school to enjoy the sunshine and warmth. The kids had a blast running around, climbing trees, and kicking balls, and so did I, on top of which I felt like an awesome mom for picnicking on a weeknight. Monday is arguably the lamest day of the week, but this felt like vacation and got me totally pumped for the rest of the summer and late, light evenings like this.  

Rebecca And Jonathan Say I Zoo

The bride and me, at her rehearsal dinner.
Okay, here we finally are! So, almost three whole weeks ago, Becca and Jonathan had their wedding ceremony rehearsal. Everything went really smoothly, partly because they had planned everything so spectacularly and everyone was on the ball, and also because the location's team of wedding planners were pretty much amazing. They were so fun that I kind of miss them, actually, hah! 

All of these loud Americans are scary / I'm a very cuddly individual.
After the rehearsal, the whole gang of folks involved in the wedding headed to a park on a riverbank with a party room where we ate great food and heard a bunch of touching speeches. Tears were shed. Becca and Jonathan handed out presents to those of us in the wedding party and Jamie even got a Lego kit, despite refusing to be the "ring bear".
It didn't take a photo per day for almost five years for the professional to figure out you get
the best shots when you sneak 'em.
See what I mean? He didn't sneak here.
Anna and Becca. The best ladies.
Ask any woman: when your girlfriend gets married, you WORK.
Then it was the big day! All the ladies went our separate ways to get our hair done in the morning, then met up at Becca's hotel suite for makeup. Then, looking gorg, we all headed over to the zoo.
So apparently Becca is a model who has just been going around acting like a normal person as long as I've known her.

Oh, yeah! Did I mention yet that they got married in the botanical garden at The Toledo Zoo and had the reception in the aquarium? BEST. LOCATION. EVER. Seriously, the setting did all the work for them. It was gorgeous and there was so much to see that there was no risk of any dull moments. 
More of this trio because I miss them.
The Boss of the Wedding.
Becca and Jonathan were super cool about the ceremony and let me write whatever I wanted. So several months ago I interviewed them about what they loved most about each other and valued about their relationship. Their responses were really sweet and honest and funny, which made my job easy because I just made them vow to continue doing all the things that they were already doing that made each other happy.
It was all just too perfect for words.

I think they were really surprised (at one point Becca said, "Wait, do I have to promise that?" Hah!) and hopefully pleased. It was short and sweet and there were tears and a lot of laughter and it was a lot of fun, at least for me!
I told some really hilarious jokes during the vows.

Love it, love it, love it! P.S. Check out the smokin' hot, bearded Viking on the far right.
Instead of a big cake they had sugar cookies in zoo animal shapes. I mean, c'mon!!!
They had their posed pictures taken before the ceremony, so after the "I do's" it was straight into the party! With an open bar, a touch tank where you could pet stingrays, plus sharks, jellyfish, turtles, and tropical fish wherever you looked, there was plenty to do and see during the cocktail hour.
Becca's mom, sister, the bride, yours truly, Anna. And, like, a hundred jellyfish.

After a bit, dinner was served, followed by speeches and plenty of dancing. It was seriously one of the very best days ever and I'm so honored to have been a part of it.
The Troublemakers' Table.

Monday, May 23, 2016


It is obviously taking me forever to get around to telling you all about Becca and Jonathan's wedding, but that turned out to be a good thing because their photographer has already managed to get their professional shots back to them. That means that when I do get around to posting, I'll be able to show you really nice pictures instead of just ones I took with my phone. But until then! 

The Swede, Jamie and I drove our Mustang to Toledo on May 5th, the Thursday before the wedding, so that I could go out with the bride and groom and some of their nearest and dearest for a combined, low-key bachelor/bachelorette party at a brewery.
They served chicken paprikash and chilli dogs from my favorite Toledo restaurant, Tony Packo's, plus a couple of pizzas, and brought Cards Against Humanity, a hilarious party game. Since it was Cinco de Mayo, someone brought bride and groom sombreros for Becca and Jonathan to wear. I got to see Becca's little sister, who I hadn't seen in years, meet some of the couple's closest friends, and, best of all, I got to hang with Anna and her mom. Anna is friends with a few different friends of mine from college, so while weren't ever close while we were at Marietta (save a really cozy Easter dinner at her mom's house my senior year), we have gotten to know each other at events surrounding three different weddings since graduation. And let me tell you, she is amazing. She's the most positive person you'll ever meet and just being around her makes you smile. Jamie fell in love with Anna after three seconds and couldn't get enough of her the entire time we were in Toledo. I made her promise that she'd come visit us in Sweden next summer and she seemed into it, so here's hoping. 
So, the party was a lot of fun - too much fun, if you ask the waitress who had to clean up my spilled drink and who then returned with a refill in a sippy cup. I got to see how perfect Becca and Jonathan are together and it made me feel great about the wedding ceremony that I had written for them. I was also totally impressed by how chill they both were about the big events ahead of them. It was a very good start to an awesome wedding weekend.

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Daily Jamie

Talk, Eat, Walk, Repeat

It's been almost two years since I've been back to Cleveland, so I wanted to maximize our time with Mom, Ray, and my grandparents. I love just being in their homes with them; everything feels so familiar. We don't ever really do anything in particular, besides eat good food and talk, talk, talk. And that's EXACTLY the way I like it. 
We did spend some time walking, though. Here, with Mom and Ray's rescue greyhounds, Rio and Cooper, who Jamie just loved. Jambo gave up the walking part after a bit, obvs. 
I also insisted on a stroll around my grandparents' neighborhood (during which my loved ones spotted something fascinating on the sidewalk, apparently).
And The Swede had the great idea to check out Viaduct Park, a stream hidden in the middle of town with a breathtaking waterfall. I hand't been there since we'd gotten engaged and had totally forgotten how beautiful it is. 

Monday, May 16, 2016

Daily Jamie

April 29th
April 30th
May 1st
May 2nd
Chuck E. Cheese's. I don't know who was most thrilled.
May 4th
Mom took us to a candy warehouse and told Jamie to go buck wild, which he gleefully did.
May 7th
May 8th
May 9th
May 10th
Right before his grandma and I managed to talk him out of a poop-themed birthday party.
May 11th
May 12th
May 14th
May 15th