Debbie's Doings

When two people sing together, they're in love; when two people dance together, they make love.

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Personal Challenge: Weight Loss

Something is going on that I have been ignoring for nearly a year. See I got complacent with being in love and happy with Jeff here. When that happened, I stopped paying much attention to what I was eating and drinking. I put on weight and stopped working out like I had been doing so well before I moved to NZ. You know how people say that you'll slack off when you're happy and how being with someone makes you stop trying so hard, in regards to your looks? Well, I am here to say it is true. I know I should be about 20 kg lighter than I am, I know I should be taking more care in what I wear and how I look daily, but my husband loves me just as I am. He thinks I'm beautiful and wonderful just like I am. That makes it harder to get the motivation I need to change my life. A lot harder. But in six weeks I'll be turning 30 and I'm thinking down the road when we start a family...I don't want to be where I am now at that point. It's unhealthy and dangerous, besides setting a bad example for our future kids. I don't want my kids to struggle the way I have. I want to instill good habits in them from birth and that means I need to set the right example now.

So today I started something different. I worked out this afternoon and made a vegetarian meal tonight. I'm thinking of ways to get more fruit and veggies into my diet without having a boring salad every day. Thing is- I always have a really boring salad. It's always lettuce, carrot and zucchini. That's all I have here that I like raw. So what do I do to eat more raw veggies? Any ideas? I am a natural veggie-hater (ask my mom) and getting me to eat veggies is always a struggle. I want to eat something that tastes good.

I have two months until my trip to the USA with my husband. I would really like to be able to wear my summer clothes again without feeling awful about being in them. I want to feel good in a swimsuit and not hide from the camera. It's going to be a hard road the next two months, but I really want to get a grip on my health and my weight. I would like to lose the weight and hopefully not find it again.

Today's funny exercise was this abs workout dance I found through Pinterest:

I look like an idiot doing this warmup- I enjoyed it though.

Starting weight: 93 kg.
Exercise for the day: 3 minute abs warmup (video above), 15 minutes Pilates and abdominal ABCs.

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Personal Challenges: Project 365

When I lived in South Korea I had a photography hobby. I bought a nice camera, went out on weekends for shooting pictures and did a lot of reading and practicing with my Nikon. In the last couple of years though, I got lazy. I stopped using my DSLR and started using my point and shoot Nikon for everything. I feel like I've forgotten my eye for pictures and the beauty around me. I don't mean to say that I don't see beauty anywhere, but that I have forgotten how much it meant to me to be able to capture that beauty in a photo. So I have started a new personal challenge: to take a photo every day and post it online. So I went and joined project 365, an online photo journal website and posted my first picture today. Here's the link for following this project: Project 365. I think I will also post the week in photos on a Sunday here so you could just look at my pictures throughout this challenge. Since it is Sunday, here's this photo from today:

We went to Rabbit Island today just outside of Richmond for a BBQ with a couple of friends. It may be winter here (or very nearly) but the days are still warm and the bright sunshine beckons on a day like today. I enjoy taking pictures from a low perspective and found this one to be intriguing.

What do you think? Will I make it the entire year until May 26th, 2014 with this challenge? I hope so!!!

Sunday, May 19, 2013

A Crafty Wedding: The Ceremony Part 2

Alright, it took me all week, but I found the script from our ceremony. I really did NOT want to transcribe it from our video, so I kept looking. I originally pieced together our script from bits I found on the internet and our officiant reworked it to flow better and smoother. I still remember the afternoon she read the script to me over the phone for the first time and I started tearing up. I knew it was perfect and would reflect our marriage wonderfully on that day. So without further ado, here's our wedding script:

Ladies and gentlemen! On behalf of Jeffrey and Deborah, welcome!




You all, family and friends, have gathered together here today to witness and bless the union in marriage of this couple. Today Jeffrey and Deborah bring their hopes and dreams, their gifts and talents, their unique personalities and spirits, which God will unite as one as they build their lives together. We rejoice with them in thankfulness to the Lord for creating this union of hearts, built on friendship, respect and love. Today Jeffrey and Deborah are doubly blessed as they have the approval and blessing of their families and friends.

Who has the honor of presenting this woman to be married to this man?

Mom and Dad: We do.

My dad then opened the wedding in a short prayer of blessing. It was nice to have him do part of the ceremony like that since he couldn't perform the wedding itself (because he's not a recognized celebrant in NZ).



Hand in hand you enter marriage, hand in hand you step out in faith on your journey through life. The hand you freely give to each other is both the strongest and the most tender part of your body. In the years ahead you will need both strength and tenderness. Be strong in your commitment, never let your grip become weak and yet, be flexible as you go through life's changes. Strength and tenderness, strong commitment and flexibility; of such is a marriage made as you walk together hand in hand.Also remember that you don't walk this path alone. Never be afraid to reach out to others when you face difficulty, or when you feel like a failure. There are the hands of your family and friends and church family to reach out to. Just as they support you both today, they will be there for you in the future. Always remember, above all else, that behind you, underneath you and al around you are the outstretched arms of the Lord Jesus Christ , the author and perfecter of your faith.



Doug: He read our reading chosen from the Song of Solomon.      I am my beloved's and he is mine, his banner over me is love.      Set me as a seal upon your heart, as a seal upon your arm.     For love is strong as death,jealousy is fierce as the grave.     Its flashes are flashes of fire,the very flame of the LORD.     Many waters cannot quench love,neither can the floods drown it.



Jeffrey, sharing with Deborah a relationship of love, tenderness and laughter, will you stand by her through all her tomorrows, respecting her as a person, her individuality, her needs, her changes and enjoying her love through all your life together?

Jeffrey: I will.

Deborah, sharing with Jeffrey a relationship of love, tenderness and laughter, will you stand by him through all his tomorrows, respecting him as a person, his individuality, his needs, his changes and enjoying his love through all your life together?

Deborah: I will.

As family and friends, you form a community of support for Jeff and Debbie. Each of you, by your presence today, is being called upon to uphold their commitment to each other. Offer your love and support, never your judgement. Encourage them and listen to them when they ask for advice. Do you offer your love and support to strengthen their marriage and bless this family created by their union? Please answer by saying we do.

Congregation: We do.



Laura: She was supposed to do her reading here, but Laura realized once we were up at the front of the chapel that she left her card with her reading somewhere else. Oops! It was okay though. Here is the reading though, where it was supposed to be (she ended up reading it at our reception during speeches).

Love is a temporary madness; it erupts like volcanoes and then subsides. And when it subsides you have to make a decision. You have to work out whether your roots have so entwined together that it is inconceivable that you should ever part. Because this is what love is. Love is not breathlessness,it is not excitement, it is not the promulgation of eternal passion. That is just being in love, which any fool can do. Love itself is what is left over when being in love has burned away, and this is both an art and a fortunate accident. Those that truly love have roots that grow towards each other underground, and when all the pretty blossoms have fallen from their branches, they find that they are one tree and not two. (From Captain Corelli's Mandolin).




I, Deborah Marie Long, take you, Jeffrey Leo Brooks to be my husband, my partner in life and my one true love. I will cherish our union and love you more each day through our lives. I will trust you and respect you, laugh with you and cry with you, loving you faithfully through good times and bad, regardless of the obstacles we face together. I give you my hand, my heart and my love, from this day forward, for as long as we both shall live.

(After I got through my vows, I had to take a breath because I was fighting back tears the whole time. My dad then laughed and said, "Breathe Debbie, breathe.")

I, Jeffrey Leo Brooks, take you, Deborah Marie Long to be my wife, my partner in life and my one true love. I will cherish our union and love you more each day through our lives. I will trust you and respect you, laugh with you and cry with you, loving you faithfully through good times and bad, regardless of the obstacles we face together. I give you my hand, my heart and my love, from this day forward, for as long as we both shall live.






We then exchanged rings with this pledge to each other:
With this ring, I give you my heart. I promise from this day forward you shall not walk alone. May my heart be your shelter and my arms be your home.

Jeff and Debbie, today before your family and friends as witnesses, you have declared your lifelong commitment to each other. You have vowed and made promises to each other and symbolized it by the exchanging of rings. And so by the authority I have by the the Law of New Zealand, I now have the privilege of pronouncing you husband and wife. Jeff, you may kiss your beautiful bride!


First kiss!


Our second kiss...we almost always rub noses.


In wedding ceremonies in New Zealand, the marriage certificate is signed as part of the ceremony. After our first kiss, we signed our certificate while Jeff's father played Trumpet Voluntary from the back of the church. Very few people knew he was going to play for us, so I heard some people jumped in fright when he began.





Closing prayer: Lord God, we give you thanks for our coming together to share in this joyful yet solemn act. We rejoice in the relationship of Jeff and Debbie and give thanks for the love that has brought them together and gives direction and purpose to their future. Let your blessing, peace and love cover them all the days of their life together. Amen.

Thank you again for joining Jeff and Debbie in their special celebration. Ladies and gentlemen, it gives  me much pleasure to present to you Mr. and Mrs. Jeff and Debbie Brooks!




Our recessional music was a piece played on the trumpet by Don. Only a couple people knew we were having a music piece from LOTR as it was a surprise for my dad. It was this piece from Lord of the Rings:

The part he played starts at 1:15. 

We exited the church and then we were married! Yay!

Sunday, May 12, 2013

A Crafty Wedding: The Ceremony Part 1

We finally get to my favorite part of our wedding day. Granted, we would have been there sooner if I had kept up on my blogging posts, but it's been busy around here and I am usually pretty exhausted by the end of the day and can't be bothered to write. Sorry!

So our ceremony was about to begin. When people were coming into the church, they were greeted by this:

We didn't really decorate the church as we knew it was going to be a short ceremony but there was an enormous altar at the front that was begging for some decor, so I obliged.


My FIL waiting to play for our wedding

FIL and Nana walking to the church
We had to hide out for a bit while waiting for everyone to find a seat in the church. So we hung out just out of view next to a preschool in the park. Since it was a weekday, there were students in the classroom. When they heard that there was a wedding happening, a request went out to see the princess (at least, that's what my Dad told me!) So I made sure no one would be able to see me at the church and I popped around the corner while several preschoolers hung out of the windows to admire me in my dress. They all liked my purple shoes a lot.

Me, Nana and MOH Irish waiting to get to the church.
Finally we got the all clear from our officiant and DOC Naomi. It was time to line up and get going! We had decided to do a full line-up so I could use the song I wanted. What I had been dreaming of walking down the aisle to was this beautiful piece by Bach that was on a cello. I had the song for years and was so glad I was able to make this work.
Our processional was led by Jeff, with his mother.
Next was Best Man Doug with Nana.
MOH Irish was next up, followed by our flower girl and ring bearer.
Last was me, flanked by my mom and dad.

At least that's what was supposed to happen...see, anyone who has young kids involved in the wedding party knows that there is always a strong possibility that something won't quite work. Someone will get stage fright and freak out, cry and refuse to do their part. That someone was our flower girl. Honestly, I didn't care. I knew she was with family and that she had been sick that weekend, so she wasn't feeling 100% on our wedding day. So our little flower girl (who practiced so many times at home with Mom and Gran watching) was carried by her dad, Best Man Doug.

Flower girl, BM and Nana

Me with my parents. If you look closely, it looks like they've got sunglasses on, but really it's their transition lenses.

From the back of the church.

The song finished just as we reached the front of the church. Officiant Eugenie asked who gave me in marriage and after my parents answered together, "We do," I got a kiss from Mom and a squeeze from Dad before he turned to open the ceremony in prayer. Now we were ready for our vows.

Next time: Our vows in full and very little storytelling from me (aren't you glad?)

All pictures from Anna Pearson and Charles Anderson (our friends who did all our photography).

Saturday, May 4, 2013

A Crafty Wedding: First Look

One of the things we had decided to do for our sanity was to have a first look. When we first got engaged (okay, before then) I had begun following a wedding blog and reading up on trends for weddings. Something that has become really popular in the US is to have a first look. This is when the couple sees each other before the ceremony and it is photographed and then portraits are taken (sometimes). There are several benefits to doing a first look and for us, these weighed out the negative ideas about seeing each other before the ceremony.

First of all, I felt like I would be more relaxed if I could see Jeff before we got married. We didn't spend time apart from each other before that time- we stayed together in our house the night before the wedding and drove with each other into town. Secondly, I felt like it would be really complicated to stay apart from each other up until the ceremony. We were still setting up for the wedding that morning and needed to hang out somewhere in the park. There wasn't much of a point to staying apart (plus I didn't really want to wait).

So we planned to meet at the Miyazu Japanese Gardens which was just down the road from the park where we were going to get married. Our photographers were supposed to coordinate our meeting, but when we arrived at the park, I could see Jeff and his best man/brother Doug waiting around with Charlie at the entrance...ummm, not what was supposed to happen. But Anna hopped out of the car and after a quick consultation sent the boys on their way and came back to get me. When we pulled into the parking lot and I got out, something went wrong. For some reason Jeff didn't realize that he needed to stay with Charlie at the bridge and he had come back to the parking lot and saw me as I climbed out of the car.

Oops.

So the following first look is completely staged...but if I hadn't told you this story, you wouldn't have known, right?

MOH Irish walking me to the bridge to see Jeff




Soon we got our wedding party over and took some pictures together before we headed back to the park for the ceremony. I was finally relaxed and ready for this wedding to happen!

Did you have a completely staged first look? Was there something that didn't quite go right during pictures?