Monday, December 12, 2011


We've officially entered the time of year know in my little family as "anniversabirthachristmakah." Amid the already crowded holiday season, we have six birthdays and our anniversary in the last two months of the year.

I remember sitting with one of my college mentors, a lovely woman in her 50s with a hot pink pixie cut, months before our planned April wedding. My fiance was already living in California while I stayed in Ohio to finish schools (still the right choice). For two people who hate talking on the phone, it was torture.   At the risk of sounding like a love-sick idiot (guilty), those fifteen months of living on separate sides of the country were the hardest I've ever gone through.

But I wanted a spring wedding. I wanted to get married in this beautiful courtyard behind an old stone chapel in Oberlin (a wonderful little college town in Ohio and part of my inspiration for West River).

And then one day, my pink-haired mentor sat me down and asked me a very important question: Did I want a wedding or a marriage?

Each year, when our anniversary gets squeezed in between my husband's birthday and Christmas, I'm glad I said marriage.

After my birthday on November 1, we have my brother's on November 4, my brother-in-law's on November 9, Thanksgiving, my sister-in-law's birthday on December 4, my mom's on December 11, my husband's on December 17, our anniversary on December 20, Christmas and then New Years. It's crazy. Absolutely, positively, freakin' crazy. (And expensive). But I wouldn't trade those first four months we had as newlyweds or our beautiful, snow-covered wedding or the dozens of Christmas-y wedding gifts we received for an April anniversary.

It's easy to forget the important things. We get caught up in the steps of a journey and forget the outcome. As a writer, I get so concerned with perfecting my query that I forget the aim is to be a writer. The journey is important, but so is the goal.

As I decend into anniversabirthachristmakah chaos each November, I'm reminded that the wedding wasn't the important thing - our marriage is - and that helps me pull the rest of my life into focus.

I'll probably take a bit of a break from writing and critiquing and blogging over the next few weeks, but I'll be back, full of stories and sick of cold weather again.

Merry Anniversabirthachristmakah to each of you!

 Our wedding day
Only thing cooler than a bagpiper?
A bagpiper pipping in the snow! 
Need long sleeves for a winter wedding in Ohio! 
Prettier than a courtyard in the spring, right?
And I got to wear a fur-trimmed cape!
Beautiful, beautiful snow.
Now let's move to Los Angeles.


  1. Yikes, that's a lot of birthdays/anniversaries in the two busiest months of the year. But I'm glad it was the right choice for you.

    (And somehow, having more celebrations in these two months is really kind of wonderful. :))

  2. Wow, you have a lot packed in there, but I'm sure is is worth it. Your wedding looked beautiful.

  3. I love it! so romantic, crazy family life, BUT it's perfect! Happy crazy holiday, birthday, anniversary!

  4. Thanks everyone! It is wonderful. We get to celebrate for two straight months :) Then sleep through most of January!