Today my heart is heavy.

Last Saturday am, I was talking to my Mom back east.  We usually talk at least once a week about nothing and everything.  During our conversation,  an image flashed into my brain from a dream I had had earlier that morning.  The image startled me because it jumped right into my stream of consciousness without context, revealing a bright blue sky,  a big tree in the background and a landscape of long, lush green grass with people standing in a cluster, looking forward in the same direction. It was a warm and comforting image that I immediately recognized as Heaven in my dream.  And that is all there was.

photo credit: farm4 static on Flickr

Minutes later, my phone buzzed and I turned it on to discover a text message from one of my best friends saying that the cancer was back.  A close friend, who had fought breast cancer before and kept it at bay for more than 2 years, had just learned that it found its way in to her liver and bones.

Doubt. It immediately seeped in and I wish I could make it go away. That I could squash it and the sickness that has weakened this amazing young woman, mother and friend.

Sadness. My heart is very heavy and underneath it all, I feel a pang of anger.  Moms should be off limits until they have lived through all the boo-boos, and crushes to the wedding planning and grandchildren. Kids need their Moms. They do. And this time, this mother just doesn’t know if she has it in her to fight or if it is a fight she can even win.

All I can do is pray that this will all be okay in a way that I just can’t see right now and be grateful for the day before me, my sweet family, my loving friends and the frosty green grass beneath my feet.

Etsy for Invites

Etsy is a great place to find unique wedding invitations.  Many of the designers will also create an invite for you based on your personal style and wedding theme.   Here are a few pics of some faves that I found on Etsy.   The first two are from CheerupCherup and the last is from designer, Paper Stories.  My style: fresh, whimsical and always romantic.

Perfect for a winter wedding

Perfect for a winter wedding

Whimsical summer wedding

Whimsical summer wedding

Sexy, nerdy love notes

Sexy, nerdy love notes

Instyle Wedding Gowns 2008-2009

Instyle Wedding Editors have plucked some amazing dresses right off the runway for this season’s dream dress list. Here are a few of my faves:

Love this A-Line Gown by Amsale

Destination Fave made of Ivory Silk Charmeuse by Terry Keely

Lacey Strapless Monique Lhuiller gown

Off the shoulder ballgown by Vineyard Collection

Alvina Valenta’s Ivory Silk A-line Crumb Catcher

Short & Sweet for the Modern Bride, Reverie by Melissa Sweet

Carolina Herrara ruched, embroidered on the shoulder dress is romantic

Bridesmaid Gifts

I wanted something unique for each of my bridesmaids because they all represent different phases in my life and have been there to support me at every turn.  I am very blessed to have such amazing friends and was really happy to have 9 of them standing beside me on my wedding day.

After almost a year of trying to figure out what to get my bridesmaids, I finally decided on 9 different silver necklaces, which I found at Blue Ruby made by local designers, 9 different books that I thought each may enjoy and 9 USB keys with a playlist of songs that reminded me of each of them saved on each drive.  It wasn’t easy.  It took time but in the end, I was happy with the gifts.