In the 10 years that I’ve known Arica, I’ve come to feel like many of her friends are mine and vice versa. We’ve also shared a ton about things we grew up doing, traditions our families and friends have had, and pretty much anything else you can imagine. So, when she invited me and her other two bridesmaids to her own Blessing Shower in Texas, I was so excited because I’d heard about them from her but had not ever been to or experienced one myself! Plus, getting to go to her hometown and hangout with these girls for a weekend was SO much fun! Even though this was only the second time I’d seen Mandy and Denalyn in person, it felt like I’d known them as long as I’d known Arica.
However, the week leading up to the shower, I still wasn’t totally sure what I needed to bring or do for this shower, so I called Molly (the hostess) to get some details. I knew it was going to be unlike any wedding shower I’d attended before, but as she explained to me, there was no way to fully “get it” until you’d been to one. And she was right! But, she explained that it wasn’t so much about the gifts as it was about loving on the bride and blessing her with wisdom and truth about marriage and things God had taught each of us along our own journeys.
I believe everyone brought gifts, but the range of them varied as much as the stories and advice that was given. It was SUCH a beautiful time with these women and I think all of us came away more full of God’s love and desire for our marriages to honor and glorify Him!
Arica had no idea that we were surprising her with breakfast and friends before we even left for the actual shower!
I was at the tail end of my first trimester and the queasiness wasn’t completely gone… and these helped!
I think I ate more berries that day than anything else. But they were delicious!
I wish I could remember all the stories people told with their gifts. Unfortunately, all I remember about this one was how much I loved that rolling pin!
Oh my heavens, this quilt was made by the women in her family from Arica’s baby clothes. ALL of us were in tears at this point!
So glad Arica’s mom and grandma could be there!
This is going to sound so silly to some, but I gave Arica a cheese slicer. The reason being that 1) we ate SO much cheese while we were in Belgium together! And 2) one of my most favorite things about being married to Ben is how silly and “cheesy” we can be sometimes. When you’re still dating, there’s still that feeling that’s hanging around to always be impressing the other person. And not that we shouldn’t do things to wow our spouse once we are married (I do try to at least put on real clothes 4 of the 5 days out of the work week before Ben gets home!), it’s so amazing how much I’ve let my guard down over the last three years with him. So, my encouragement to Arica was to be cheesy with Chris. Because those times of laughter are so good in the moment, but they’re what build memories and create inside jokes down the road. And sometimes, those little inside jokes can help you get through the not-so-fun times.
Oh my dear friend, what a blessing you have been to me over the last 10 years! I can not wait to be with you in two short weeks to celebrate this time in your life!!