We went to sleep with the forecast predicting a sunny summer morning. We woke up with thunder and lighting scattering the sky. The drive up the parkway was difficult with dense fog obscuring the road. Needless to say, the weather was not what we had hoped for.

Guarded by the rhododendron bushes, Ali and Terry exchanged vows while the wind whipped viciously over the mountaintop. As the rain started again, we decided to make the most of it. It was their wedding day, after all.

We hiked even while the rain and wind broke through the forest of trees. We decided to drive down the parkway a little ways, in hopes that we would have a view and better weather. Thankfully, the rain let up at a nearby overlook, and we were able to take in the beauty of a foggy Appalachian morning.

The morning was not at all what we expected, but I truly believe the rain and fog made for a more magical story (and photos).
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The drive to Linville was treacherous. Thunder boomed in the distance. Rain fell in sheets. The radar was not hopeful.

We arrived at the Hawksbill trailhead merely hoping to make it through the ceremony without an epic downpour. The officiant was lost, and we chatted through our options while we waited for him to arrive. The rain held off long enough for them to exchange vows in the forest while the fog weaved through the trees.

The forecast showed imminent storms, but we decided to chance it and hike anyway. The views that awaited us were astounding. The fog rolled through and would intermittently show us a different masterpiece every other minute.

We picked blueberries on the way down, only for the rain to begin again.

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I polled on Instagram asking for insight on content for 2019. One thing that was highly requested was more behind-the-scenes and personal posts. Therefore, I’m going to attempt to share more about our life on here. I used to be better about writing about our days, but parenthood has (rightfully so) taken over much of my free time.

One thing that I do make time for at the end of every day is to read. Some nights, I’ll make it to bed early enough to read for an hour. Others, I’m so tired that I can barely make it through a couple of pages. Reading has become a sacred piece of alone time where I can get lost in a story.

I found that I had more time for it once I shut my phone off before bed. This is a practice I started two years ago and haven’t looked back. I’m less anxious and more relaxed to fall asleep if I can carve out this window to be off screens and in a book.

I like to alternate between fiction and nonfiction, dense and lighthearted, past and present. This month, I had quite the spread of different genres.


This book haunted me for days. Heck, it even made it into my dreams this week. Tara’s story blew my mind, and I couldn’t put this book down. Her memoir speaks to the importance of education and the danger of narrow-minded thinking. I can’t recommend this book enough, especially if you enjoyed The Glass Castle.

Jennifer’s Way

Sadly, there are only a few books about celiac disease, and there are even fewer personal accounts. Since my diagnosis, I’ve been hungry to learn more about the disease, especially from those that have walked this path before me. Jennifer is a highly-regarded actress who was misdiagnosed for twenty years. Her reflections speak to the challenges of the disease, especially to the complexities of the symptoms and diagnosis. If you have a loved one with celiac disease (or are struggling with an autoimmune condition yourself), this is a great attempt to understand what they are going through.

The Room on Rue Amélie

World War II fiction is a guilty pleasure of mine. It is an era of our history that is unfathomable. I get lost in the stories and true accounts of those that weathered such treacherous years. I always leave WWII novels horrified at the evil that our world can succumb to, and yet there is always an air of hope that lingers throughout. Regardless, such stories remind me to be grateful to live in a world that is mostly peaceful at this time. I’ve probably read at least 30 WWII-era novels, and I hate to say that this is not at the top of the list. It was a quick read, and I sprinted to the end. The story was enjoyable, but the writing kind of fell flat for me.

Cold Mountain

This is one of my friend’s favorite books, and I was intrigued by the setting, so I added it to my book list. The novel takes place during the Civil War and follows a fleeing solider as he returns to his love in Appalachia. The writing was beautiful, poetic. I enjoyed learning about the culture in the 1800s, especially the medicinal and farm practices of the day. This wasn’t my favorite novel by far. It moved slow at times, and it was a journey to make it to the not-so-favorable ending. But, I won’t spoil it more than that.



florida island wedding

They felt their families deserved a vacation, so they planned their wedding around one of their favorite destinations:  Key West. Their family enjoyed the Cuban coffee shops, drinks, and beach time. Oh, and don’t forget about the quintessential Florida sunset.

Summers in Florida overwhelming warm, but no one minded a bit. Their girls threw flowers down the aisle, Jeff teared up seeing his bride, and Alison beamed. After they were pronounced, we waded through tourists as Alison waved to everyone walking by. “We’re married!” she exclaimed. Their state of bliss was hard to miss.

Even though their wedding was small, the dance floor was never empty. Guests enjoyed ice-cream and funfetti cake while the music played on.

The team:

Photography:  MorningWild Photography
Planning:  Simply You Weddings
Venue:  Ocean Key Resort
Florist:  Durate Floral Design
Band:  Rusty Lemmon
Cake:  Key West Cakes
Hair + Makeup:  Studio Marie Pierre

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Kitt Year Two

My sweet boy. I cannot believe you are two. You started this year trotting along with your newfound skill of walking. You’re running out of your second year and jumping off of everything. You surprise us with a new word almost every day (although we rarely hear the same word repeated again). You’re obsessed with golf…even more than your dad. You are incredibly creative and make a golf club out of anything that resembles it. Your goofiness and mischievousness keep us on our toes, but it’s one of my favorite personality traits you have. You always make us smile and laugh. In fact, I think I’ve smiled and laughed more in my entire life since the day you were born. You still let us snuggle you (somewhat) after naps. You are still nursing and request it frequently. Weaning will be an experience in year three for sure. This week you’ve started saying “no” to everything along with a very fun spell of temper tantrums when you don’t get your way. I guess this is the official welcome into turning two.

I thank God almost every day for all that you are and all you will ever be. You are such a gift, and I’m grateful to be your momma. Happy birthday my son. I love you more than you could ever know.

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Photo on the left by Perry Vaile.

boone family photographersLast three photos by Kellie Kano.