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::Yakima Wedding Pictures::

Okay so I know I’ve totally been a bad bride. Like, real bad. I’ve just been wedding’d out to be quite honest. I recently found a new Yakima Brides Journey Down the Aisle in Kalea Harrison’s new blog . . . perfect for picking up where I left off. And a cute little kick in the butt to finally post my pics! I hope you all find what you need in her posts, I think she’ll be a great continuation of what I started in Yakima for all the to-be’s and wedding pros.

I have had a wonderful time with this blog and it really opened my eyes (and addiction) to the blogging world. I’m proud to say I started here. My final post will include many, many wedding photos from my big day, courtesy of my fab photogs over at Stone Castle Photography. Thank you all for sticking with me through the thick and thin, I appreciate your support, readership and feedback.

A big “MWAH” to you all. Enjoy the loveliness and to the “to-be’s” happy planning.

more family pictures {love}

all our friends and family helped make us who we are today – we wanted to show them how much they mean to us then – today – and always

::addicted to pictures::



 we used un-traditional vows so I made him a vow booklet and included the things I love about him 

new family

new family

my girls


 Coach’s Crew – thank you to all Seattle Storm Men’s Basketball Team – you were a huge part in the success of our day


personalized kicks

Lauren and Uncle Bill – wonderful helpers and could not have done it without you

beautiful Mustang and my homemade decor – I love you Uncle Bill + Lauren

a different take on the ring picture


bridal suite toast

the kids table and things for them to do

homemade menu 

RSVP cards

our RSVP cards and the “leave a note side”


{love again}


the momma’s

beautiful cousin speaking #1 

handsome dudes

the bands

beautiful cousin speaking #2


{his cake}

I wasn’t going to have Jordan on my cake – that’s why he got his own

btw both cakes ALL GONE and quickly. we didn’t even get any!

{my cake}

Mr. and Mrs. Gray

Hubby’s cousin, probably the cutest thing I’ve ever seen

Jeremy – great job 🙂

maid of honor speech – she did so well and made me cry a little

dad’s speech, no cue cards, lots of air quotes – loved every second of it

sis + bro 🙂

*cheers* best speeches ever

he tried to shove it in my face. i know it. and that’s my “no you did not” face

that’s right – pop-a-shots. we’re that cool.

beautiful bridesmaid and her sis

pop-a-shots again. cool again.

{prepare for lots of lovey dovey}

::twirling:: good thing you can’t tell through pictures that I forgot the steps 🙂

so big – so little 

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After the Rock Wedding Show – Coming to Yakima!!

This January, Yakima will debut a fresh, modern and brand new wedding show to area brides and grooms called After the Rock!

{PLEASE NOTE: ATR will be in addition to the Central Washington Bridal Showcase, not replacing it.  They are two completely different area shows}

An invite-only showcase, the expo will be hosting only the area’s best products and services for brides, grooms and families.  The show will be held at the Yakima Convention Center on January 16 (Sunday) from 11 am – 4 pm.  A new show also means a new game. After the Rock will be hosting three to four workshops for brides to attend that allow them a small group experience with various vendors from the show.  Which, if you’ve ever tried to talk to a vendor at a wedding show, you’ll appreciate that time where you can get them away from their booth. It’s mass hysteria ladies so I say take advantage and learn from the pros. The ability to ask questions and get answers will be priceless in your wedding planning process so make time for the workshops.  Best part – these 20 minute sessions are included in the price of the tickets! We all know how important that is when you’re pinching pennies :).

Which takes me to the next fabulous point – ticket price. The tickets are a minimum $5 donation (12 and under are free) at the door to benefit ‘Ohana. ‘Ohana is a Mammography Center at Memorial and offers mammograms to women who can’t afford them.  ‘Ohana is a word found in both the Japanese and Hawaiian cultures and was chosen as the name for the center to honor the women of our community and to represent the “extended family” of Memorial’s breast health services.

In addition to the great cause and vendor workshops, After the Rock will host two interacitve fashion shows – with all the latest from Fashion Corner – lasting about 20 minutes each and promises that everyone in the room will have a clear view of all the wonderful walking by! Yes – I said the show will be interactive. What’s that mean? You’ll just have to stop by 🙂

With all great fashion and the blue-sy sounds of The Village Musicians (not to mention delicious cake tastings), you’ll of course need wine samples! Boasting some of the state’s best vineyards, Yakima is becoming quite the little wine mecca of eastern Washington and area brides and grooms have the advantage of buying straight from the winemakers! ATR will have a wine bar set up so all the brido winos can taste the best. What wedding is complete without the juice? In addition to the wine bar, all vendors are able to serve food and beverage samples. While brides aren’t able to buy the wine during the show, all the newly to-be’s should come ready to taste and ready to book!

The wine and cake not quite enough for you gentlemen? After all, we are aware it’s Football {PLAYOFFS} Sunday (yes – I just capitalized it – I’m sure the men will understand).  No worries, ATR has you taken care of. Enter the guy’s lounge . . . also known as “Mansland” (clever, right?). Mansland is open to all grooms, dads, brothers and the occasional football, lovin’ bridesmaid  (if released, might I add ;). In Mansland . . . will be football.  I think that’s all I really need to say.

Fashion, wine, wedding and football . . . what are you waiting for?? Check out After the Rock’s website and Facebook page (updated with new vendors on a regular basis) for pre-registration. The first 200 to pre-register will receive a freebie-brideified gift bag and access to the express lines into the show!

Plan on,


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wedding’s eve

{hi tan. i miss u.}

wedding’s eve + my freaking awesome rehearsal dinner fiesta.

You know how I love my themes . . . wedding parties and events are not excluded from this fascination. Or anything really.

A big thank you to Mardine + Dave for hosting the soiree at their beautiful home, setting up, decorating and offering the West Valley Fire House for our wedding rehearsal. We could not have done it without you!

Syd + Mike – you kept us in line, you kept us going. You made sure we knew who we were, where we were and what the heck we were supposed to do next. We’re a big and rowdy bunch. I love and appreciate your ability to keep the control and for getting us through the weekend . . . and somehow smiling all the way through. And if you didn’t, you sure fooled me.

Another mucho gracias to Ronda + Austin Walters . . . you guys were there with me, and for me, throughout the entire wedding week {and before and beyond}. From campers, to bartending, to behind-the-scenes tequila and last minute beer/bouquet runs. I love you both more than I can say. The weekend would not, could not, have gone as smooth without you.

and now . . . we fiesta.

{i know, right?}

{ a few of the name rowdy hosers in attendance}

{the view. no buildings. wowing all the seattlites. even myself a little.}


{didn’t have to tell anyone twice.}

{the lovely couple doling out the thank you’s}

{personalizing kicks. poppin’ tags. fiesting. it’s how we rolled.}

{MVPs of the night}


Cha Cha all,

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the b-bash

Much like Vegas, what happens at a bachelorette party, should stay at a bachelorette party . . . unless the bride is a blogger {annnd I just realized I hate that word}. Don’t get too excited though, most of it will be left unsaid, but it was too badass of a night not to share . . . even just a few things :).


1. I totally wore a white foofy, tutu-esque dress, with sequins.

2. I also totally wore a pink sash to let everyone know I was the bachelorette.

3. Despite my hatred for phallic decor, I wore (for one split-freaking second) a penis veil. YUK. But when else are you gonna wear one of those nasty little things? Time for me lighten up on my NO PENIS policy for the b-party. No pictures for you readers, sorry. And yes, those are penis ice cubes up there. Those, those I liked loved.  And yes, my mom was there.

4. I got a blister or two . . . we ran around Seattle on a totally appropriate scavenger hunt, in heels and short dresses. And ran – as in literally.

5. I tried to cheat at my scavenger hunt . . . and still lost.

6. Discovered that everybody, I mean everybody, loves to sing out loud to Journey’s Don’t Stop Believing. Two words – video. proof.

7. Random strangers want to take pictures with you and of you. Or of your badass limo/bus – without you.

8. Bare knees aren’t the best surface to go down a slide on.

9. No food and vodka = straight up scavengers (pretty scavengers though)  four hours later.

10. 15 ladies trying to use a single bathroom, all at the same time, takes a little bit of patience and a sturdy bladder.

11. Confirmed how freaking fun, awesome and beautiful these ladies in my life are. So many bent over backwards to put the night together, make it up to Seattle and put on a smiling face for me. For that alone, I love them all. I wish I could do it all over again.


More bachelorette ideas tomorrow!

Get your thrill,



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welcome back – this time for real

Well we’re at this familiar “starting point” again. There’s not supposed to be multiple beginnings in a blog’s life, but, well this one, there is.

No excuses, and for my own personal sanity, no apologies.

Like a PB&J, it’s simple really, I just needed a break. I OD’d on white dresses, cake + DIY. While I tried to come back for my readers my heart wasn’t in it and my mind . . . well, that was somewhere other than on weddings.

The question, in these last few weeks was, do I still want to do this? Took me a bit to get it straight but YES.

Like the tabloid suckers that call themselves Speidi, I’m not going anywhere any time soon.

I’m off – and with a wink and a smile – back again tomorrow,

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the real world + the realization of Mrs.

{Michael Fisk Photography}

Well, I’m back in the saddle.  In all it’s haste and glamour, my wedding day came and went – just like the beautiful blur that everyone claimed it would be.  We honeymooned in Maui, came back to an overly eager pup and quite the messy abode.  Since then I’ve cleaned, recycled tons of cardboard, gift bags and tissue paper, sent heaps to Value Village, celebrated the hubby’s #31, trip’d it down to Portland to visit cousins and (thank god for this one) got a computer back. And in order. Oh yeah, and my music.  Computers are my life anymore.

Anyway, as I slowly delve into my ridiculously large and BS-of-a-conglom, laundry pile (a neglected pre-nuptial heap + 6 day Yak stack  + a 10 day Maui sand pile = you do the math) I find it difficult to adjust to the real world again.  Takes me back to that good old Matchbox 20 song from the 90s-something really {I wish the real world, would just stop hassling me}.  It was imminent anyway.  Sure, there a ton of things on my big to-do that I’ve been anxiously waiting to bite into since the wedding countdown set in, but . . . where to even begin?  Beginning . . . beginning any new project is hard.  Figuring out what I really want to do with my life, that’s hard too.  I was engaged straight out of the U and between that and the two years that I was a fiancée, I realized there was a little more education I was interested in and a little more prep I wanted to put into my career.  Were these values something I could get out of what I thought was my dream job just eight months ago? I need to figure it out.  I’m naked without the wedding. Nothing to hide behind anymore.  This freedom, to not be confined by being a bride, was something I was ready for so I could move on with life.   I’m adjusting though.  I’ve felt a sense of life in just this last week alone.

{Memory Montage Productions}

Another thing that’s taking it’s time is the realization of being Mrs. Gray.  As I said, the wedding was a blur and I was so jacked up on anxiety throughout the day that I never fully took the moment to let the meaning of marriage set in – I never let it be just me and him. And unlike the lovely Zsa Zsa, I only plan to do this once and so that, that I do regret. I don’t know if it would’ve been any different had I tried though. I guess everyone experiences things differently.

Becoming the Mrs., that slowly sinks in.  Every time I see my ring on his finger, it sinks in a bit.  It comes with practicing my new signature like a love-struck teen with her crush’s last name.  Or being called sis by the new in-laws. The little things make it real. It is real and I’m a wife. – a term I thought once only belonged to mom’s and teachers. It’s weird to say it . . . but I have a feeling I’ll get used to it :).

Real posts and pictures coming very, very soon. Thank you all for hanging in there with me.

Moving on,


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fathers and daughters

Dad helping me with my first steps, circa 1986.

He didn’t tell me how to live; he lived, and let me watch him do it.

-Clarence Budington Kelland

Dad would always take me out to the court in our backyard to play HORSE or to have me practice my free throws.  As I got older, our time on the court would consist more of one vs. one.  Each of us always willing to sweeten the deal, we would play for money. You know, the kind of money a 14- or 15-year-old can bet.  Anyway, we would play one vs. one for a win and then best out of 10 free throws, for a win. If we each won one, it was a wash.

I still believe to this day that dad never “let” me win and that’s exactly what I wanted. I wanted to earn it. I hated to lose but I didn’t want a cheated win.  I remember getting so heated about bumming a lay up, missing a free throw or just plain sucking for the afternoon. I know I was not a pleasure to be around. Dad always stayed calm though. I don’t know how he did it and I don’t know how he could handle me. My attitude, though poor at times, never swayed him to give up, walk off the court or stop asking me to play.  He never told me to “check it” – he just kept coming back. A new day, a new game.  What my dad did was simple, and silent. True to form.

My dad and I had a special language when I was growing up. Mom never understood it, but we did.  I may be stubborn like my mother but, a lot of me is my father. I guess I don’t know how to explain it to anyone in a way that makes sense, but I’m okay with that.  He knows what I’m talking about.

Though a lot of it was silence back then, it’s did a 180 in my years through college.  I remember sitting on the floor of the living room during my Husky days and talking with dad for nearly an hour. It was so easy.  For a long time, mom was our channel of information. It was never done on purpose, it’s just how it was.  To get me on the phone is like pulling teeth, but that time was different.  It wasn’t our first conversation, or the most important for that matter, but it was the first time in my 20 years that I realized how much I enjoyed talking to him, as an adult, with my life to share.

Our adult relationship, our chats, they’ve only grown since that day on the floor, and by leaps and bounds.   I whole-heartedly believe that realizing you have a friend in your parent is one of the most exciting things to discover about adulthood. I can only hope that others are as lucky.   

Dad – a few of my favorite quirks and memories:

* The “Sunday-drive” way you have of getting from point A to point B. We all know where I got the lead foot from.

*Your famous pancakes.

*Your young-man ‘stache.

*Scaring the sh*t out of me and T in one of those ugly left-over, Halloween masks.

*Your temper – oh how an easy-going man could lose it when the Hawks dropped a pass (or two, or three).

*Learning your favorite number is 4, and being completly shocked. I had no clue people liked #4.

*For completing my chores when asked the simple question of , “Now, how do you do that again?”

*Sharing my taste in music and introducing me to The Beatles. I’m pretty sure I still have that CD. Somewhere. Oh, and it’s John, Paul, Ringo and George . . . in case you wanted to quiz me again 🙂

*Teaching me how to shoot the basketball. Properly.

*oh yeah, and the MJ fade away . . .

*Answering every single question I can think to ask about your childhood and all the black and whites in grandpa’s closet. Like me, you never seem to get bored with it.

*The steering wheel motion you made with your hands, just for me, during high school basketball games. Reminding me to drive.

*The flight back from Arizona – thank you for deflecting the lady’s glare in the seat in front of me when I kicked her. The entire flight.

*Letting us ride on the back of the lawn mower.

*For me being able to say my future husband reminds me of the man you are.

*For wholly loving, the way you know how to love.

So here’s to you dad, one of the most loyal, hard-working and dedicated people I know.

This, everyone, is why that man will be walking me down the aisle on July 24.

I love you dad, happy father’s day.

I’m gonna watch you shine
Gonna watch you grow
Gonna paint a sign
So you’ll always know
As long as one and one is two
There could never be a father
That loved his daughter more than I love you

Paul Simon


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