Christmas trees and marriage

the weekend before thanksgiving, mike and i headed up to boone to pick out and cut down our christmas tree. year two of our first tradition.

we made a weekend of it and bundled up in an adorable bed and breakfast, lazy bear lodge (highly recommend). the keepers were awesome (animal lovers), the food was yummy but the room and the view were the best. our room was fully equipped with a cozy fireplace, jacuzzi bath, fluffy robes and two rocking chairs on a private porch that overlooked the mountains. we were ready to quit our jobs and move in. pretty sure i offered up my services for stay several times. there is something about the mountains that makes my heart happy. the slower pace. the beauty. the chill in the air. getting away.

life is crazy. you have to be intentional on how you spend your time. otherwise, time will slip out from under you and the things you truly desired are gone. left undone. never happened. it's so easy to get caught up in the hustle and bustle that you miss the real stuff. the relationships. the conversations. the opportunities. the gospel. grace. love.  peace.

mike and i realized about 6 months into marriage that we had to be intentional about our life together. how we were going to love one another. address us. today. in the now. we decided to escape and have one weekend a month with just the two of us. in some cases this meant telling our friends we were going out of town when really we were hiding away in our home, bundled up, spending the night completely focused on each other. detached from tv, phones, the hustle and bustle. other times, we run off for a weekend somewhere and just spend the time together. completely focused on each other.

today is what we have been given. God gave me mike and him me. to love as Christ loved the church. i want to always be intentional in choosing to love him. forgive him. honor him. spend time with him. support him. surrender to him. there's no way i could do this without Christ. 

i cherish our little traditions and weekend getaways but we have no idea what is ahead of us on our journey and how long certain traditions remain traditions. we have to cherish today and trust entirely for what God has planned. we have been given so much to enjoy and be thankful for every single day. sometimes we are too focused on the road ahead of us to see the gifts God has laid before us today.  but He who sees all things, has far more in store for us than we can even imagine.


I take you to be my husband.
Believing that God has graciously given you to me,
to complete what is needful in my own life,
I want to bring to our marriage,
What will add to your own fulfillment,
And complete one another in Christ,
That we might bring honor and glory to Him.

I make a commitment to you this day,
To be the wife God desires me to be
Strong in my love for Him
And gentle in Spirit
To be your greatest supporter and best friend,
To stand with you and help you,
To always choose you,
Forsaking all others,
To fight for our marriage
through all circumstances life can throw at us,
To encourage your spiritual growth,
And the giftedness God has given you,
To be sensitive to the needs of your own heart,
And to always honor and respect you 
with my words, thoughts and actions,
As my loving partner in life and ministry.
Until death separates us,
or Jesus returns for His church.

~  peace, love and turkey grease ~


  1. How FUN! I've never had a real Christmas tree before... Eric can't wait to take me to find our own someday!
    I love that you two take 1 weekend a month and get away! Even if it is just staying home and unplugging from the world! That's something I want to start doing with my hubs, especially now that we are expecting our first baby any day! Our time together (and as a family) will be more important than EVER!

  2. Cutest best friend EVER!!!!!! Love you guys :)

  3. Beautiful photos! Such a fun little getaway. PS - loving the snood. ;) xoxo

  4. Looks like an amazing place! You are so right about making time for each other. Even after 7 1/2 years of marriage we still tell our friends that we are going away only to be home with just each other. You are starting off on the right foot my friend! Merry Christmas!

  5. This is beautiful and such an encouragement. I love you and Mike ... y'all constantly inspire Kyle and me to love each other more like Jesus. Oh - and that totally is the same dog that was at our B&B except ours was brown not black. Let's get one and share it, ok?!

  6. OK Celeste. I knew I loved your heart, but wow. This is so encouraging, expecially this time of year - during the busy busy hustle and bustle. I love your traditions and your vow for once a month. So sweet and like you said so intentional. EEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEK - makes me miss you more little one! I keep up with your life through Mallie, but I think we need some triple dates headed our way in 2013... you in?


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