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Remember how we gave each other the gift of memories and moments during Christmas 2018? The November envelope was a fondue party labeled Fondue Fun!

It wasn't fancy, but it sure was fun! We had angel food cake, chocolate, grapes, strawberries, bananas, and marshmallows.

We made a cheese fondue that was honestly a bit of a flop. If anyone can give me tips on how to make it runny instead of stringy that would be fantastic. HA HA HA We used deer sticks, granny smith apples, celery, bread and pretzel bites for our cheese fondue!

It was like one giant piece of string cheese!

We used a lot of things we already had like a little crockpot and a chocolate melting pot that I have previously used to melt candy melts for cake pops. I did purchase these, just so we could feel fancy. You can see just how fancy we were based on the Hawkeye mug that served as the storage for the forks.

I encourage each of you to consider giving the gift of time to your family. I know I will always cherish these envelopes and the fun that they brought us each month and who knows maybe we will give cheese fondue another try sometime.

Do you have a favorite fondue recipe or memory?

Why renew your vows?  They don’t expire!  They sure don’t expire, but sometimes they tend to get forgotten during the crazy, busy hustle of life or when trying to load an unruly animal into a trailer.  I brought up the idea of renewing our vows to Rob a little over a year ago and he went along with it so I knew he thought it was something neat, too!

Here’s is what I will tell you about renewing your wedding vows.  It feels different! Like totally different!  When we said the words to each other at our wedding, I was also worried about if the cake got delivered, if the DJ was setting up, and the list goes on.

While renewing our vows my mind wasn’t cluttered with any of that.  In fact, my mind was replaying the last 15 years of our married life like it was one of those reels of film that we used to watch in elementary school.  You see, our marriage hasn’t been easy, truthfully has any marriage ever been easy? There have been many nights where Rob has had to sleep on a cot or in a chair while dealing with my various health issues over the years. He has literally been my nurse as I have thrown up on him, wiped things up off of the floor for me that I couldn’t probably look at, and has been my rock when things have literally gone shitty. Pun intended. 😉  He has stood beside me while dealing with anxiety attacks, held my hand when I have felt overwhelmed, and has been the voice of reason when I couldn’t see a reason.

So while marriage vows don’t expire it doesn’t hurt to remind each other about all of those promises that you made on your wedding day and it doesn’t hurt to take the time to look into each other’s eyes and renew those promises.

Here are my top tips for making your vow renewal special:

  1. Dress up!  Make it an event.  I bought a dress that I would typically never wear and Rob wore the cowboy hat that he has had for our entire marriage (actually before we were married).
  2. Write something to each other.  We didn’t write our vows when we got married, but we did write a little something to each other this time and I will cherish those handwritten words for years to come.
  3. Involve people if you want or do it in private, the choice is yours. We chose to renew our vows in front of our children and a few family members and friends. I felt like it was extremely important for our girls to see that even though there may be raised voices from time to time Mom and Dad still love each other deeply and are committed to each other
  4. Involve your family (if you want) When we decided that we wanted to renew our vows my nephew offered to get ordained, while you don't have to have someone ordained lead your ceremony it sure was special to have Jackson conduct the ceremony and my niece read. Our girls were also involved by "walking" me to Rob.
  5. Incorporate something from your wedding. We chose to bring our cross that was passed around at our wedding. The cross was passed around at our wedding and people prayed over it and offered prayers for our marriage. We did it again at our vow renewal!
  6. .Celebrate!  We celebrated with our immediate family and friends by having a party at our house.  It was so fun and fun to relive some of the funny things that happened with our wedding day and celebrate with those that we love.

Have you considered renewing your vows? What things might you do differently?

From the gravel road-

Jen

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