The Hunt For Extraordinary Love

I’m sorry to say I haven’t had the easiest time finding men to speak with for the podcast.

I maintain my theory that men do actually care about weddings, though arguably less than women on the whole, but are rarely offered the space to exercise that caring. So when I was introduced to Nate Bagley via Elle & Zach I was pretty intrigued by this story of a man in search of honest love.

As the story goes (please watch his Ted Talk for the full enchilada) Nate was fed up after a slew of crappy relationships, and rather than point fingers at the women he had dated he acknowledged that the common thread in this series of event was him. He set out on an epic cross country exploration in search of people who had somehow, against the odds, made it work - and work well.

For his podcast The Loveumentary he spoke with couples off all shapes and sizes about what made their love “extraordinary” and the results are pretty fantastic. What is even more fantastic, is that Nate has found himself somebody to love and as a result of that exploration he is far more capable of doing that - and doing it well. 

I loved hearing him reflect on his difficulty understanding how his wife processes sadness, and his own efforts at self soothing. Navigating the complexities of emotional reaction and pattern has to be the most difficult part of a long term relationship. It certainly has been for me. 

Even knowing Patrick as well as I do, I still find myself attempting telepathy when his silence feels like a nagging voice in my head saying “You’re the problem.” It has taken me years to translate his moods and I can't even begin to imagine how flabbergasting my emotional roller coaster must be for him to decipher and maneuver. 

We may never understand one another completely, and I think that's sort of the point.

We are an enigma to even ourselves and though the equation ME + YOU may seem simple, the complex web of evolving emotions and intricacies that lie inside of each of us means that if we remain kind, aware, and eternally curious... we need never get bored. 

But it all begins with intention. You have to be willing to do the work. There is no romance in our earthly existence that genuinely mimics the pristine story book love of literature. It is messy, and complex and as such, is awarded to those who are willing to be and do better. 

So let's get to it. Extraordinary love is waiting. 


Here, There, and Everywhere

My guest this week is Katie Stoltz, owner and creator of Venues & Vows, a platform that connects engaged couples with property owners who are interested in renting out their ranch, farm, or home for a wedding or event.

This may seems like a simple idea but there are elements of what katie is doing that are pretty revolutionary for the wedding industry:

1.) A large number of venues specializing in weddings put a long list of restrictions on what clients may bring in. It can be very difficult to find a venue that will allow you to bring in an independent catering or alcohol service, or even your own beer and wine because they offer those services themselves... and on top of prohibiting that personalization they also are in a position to jack up the prices. At one point Katie described to me a wedding she attended where the venue charged the couple $5 for a can of bud light. Essentially they have a corner of the market and with little threat of competition, many wedding venues are in a position to charge however they please. 

2.) For a landowner interested in renting out their property on a case by case basis there really wasn't any platform available for them to connect with couples planning a wedding. I've heard from many people about how they are interested in renting their property out for weddings, but they don't care to create a website, or commit to being a full time wedding venue (understandably). 

3.) While many large wedding blogs and websites may offer an index of wedding venues, it is impossible to get the necessary information up front when planning a wedding. Venues (and vendors in general - this is a pet peeve of mine) are forced to pay for a spa on that list, and have the option of paying more money to appear at the top. In other words, you can buy your way to the front of the class even if you are the most expensive and difficult to work with. Yikes. 

Venues & Vows founder Katie Stoltz

Venues & Vows founder Katie Stoltz

Katie and I spoke about the benefits of a wedding weekend vs. a wedding day (I will go to my grave preaching this), and her own experience as a bridesmaid and wedding guest: navigating the invasive inquiries of well meaning friends and family.

Katie gave me a glimpse into the textured, colorful weddings of Africa and the lavish weddings of the United Arab Emirates, where apparently couples marrying within their nationality may have their wedding subsidized by the government! 

Photo by Danelle Bohane

Photo by Danelle Bohane

And we spent a good amount of time discussing the wedding traditions we would like to see abolished, weddings tropes to be aware of, and why spending more money doesn't necessarily mean for fun at your wedding. 

I really enjoyed speaking with Katie.

I love meeting people who are actively forcing the industry to self evaluate and evolve. It's really not an easy task, and as I'm discovering it can be difficult, even impossible, to get exposure in the wedding industry when the people holding the keys to the castle are the ones profiting off of a system we are trying to change. 

In the end, this is always the way of evolution. It is uncomfortable, and there is money to be lost just as there is money to be gained. Silicon Valley has upended so many stagnant business models by coming at modern issues with fresh eyes and a rebellious spirit.

I can say with some certainty that similar tectonic shifts in the wedding industry are taking shape... particularly if Katie and I have anything to say about it. 



Reaching Out

Perhaps you noticed me mention a touching email I received a couple weeks back from a listener? 

The email came at a moment when I really needed some indication that this delightful and daunting podcasting I've endeavored upon was actually worth it... in other words, I needed a pat on the back. 

The woman who emailed me was Hannah Easterly, the owner of Wild Lavender Apothecary, in Knoxville Tennessee. Hannah had been following my business Whipped for quite some time, and was a friend of fellow Bozeman entrepreneur, Keely Degenhart - owner of Spruce and Honey Apothecary.

Wild Lavender

Hannah is marrying her fiancé Michael this summer and the wedding planning process was not shaping up to be particularly easy. Hannah's vision of marrying Michael in a wildflower field next to her Mother's forest service cabin in Montana was ultimately deemed unfit to accommodate the needs and wants of her family members. She was unsure what her next step should be, and whether or not getting legally married was even something she deemed necessary

Speaking with Hannah was an absolute pleasure, and I am happy to report that she and Michael have opted for a best-of-both-worlds scenario: they will be traveling to Montana for a pre-wedding elopement/honeymoon so that they can have their own private ceremony (with a Whipped cake!) before they fly back to Tennessee for an intimate ceremony with their closest family and friends followed by an all-out party with their whole community! 

If Hannah hadn't arrived at this awesome conclusion all on her own I would have told her to do exactly that. 

because, f I've said it before I'll say it again:

don't put all of your eggs in one basket. 

Let those eggs breeeeeeeeath...

Cramming everyone's expectations into one day is crazy coo-coo bananas. I'm not honestly convinced it can be done. Advocating for yourself and your fiancé and trying to find a way to fold the needs of your family into the equation is really difficult and there is no reason why you have to follow any guidelines as you attempt to do so. Scrap the rulebook, and make a plan that fits YOU. 

That is the Avowed way.

Radical Love

Bust out the champagne and toss some confetti because The Avowed Podcast is partnering with Catalyst Wedding Magazine! 

Photographs by Rachel Joy Barehl / @racheljoybarehl

I’ve been following Catalyst since their inception (I actually donated to their Kickstarter!) and being able to work them in our mutual mission to evolve the cultural conversation surrounding love, weddings, and marriage is a literal dream come true. 

Last week I had the pleasure of speaking with Catalyst’s Editor in Chief Liz Susong, and our conversation covered a lot of territory. The Catalyst mission to increase diverse representation in wedding media is no small undertaking, and rather than shy away from the discomfort of renouncing their own egos the founders of Catalyst leaned into their evolution and embraced an intersectional Board of Community Ambassadors.

“Letting the mission be the guide is the best thing for evolving. A lot of entrepreneurial advice is against that, as far as being 'on brand and cohesive.' Yes, we are a business, but at the end of the day the whole reason we created this business to begin with was because of this mission and this value system. That is what is primary. at the end of the day I want to feel like that’s what we did. That’s what we nailed really well.”

 

In short, they decided to:

Stop. Collaborate. and LISTEN.

“I think being truly diverse and intersectional means, not just showing images or writing of people of color but also, using the correct language that resonates with those people, and also having those people in leadership of an organization.”

“I think it is of complete importance, when you're an ally, to sit back and listen and absorb. To not run to your defense mechanism, or try to prove that you're a good white person.”

I’ll be honest, this is a conversation I am very passionate about engaging in… but I still feel pretty uncomfortable talking about. Racism in particular. I live in a very white state. The liberal bubble that I live in is severely lacking in diversity and I will readily admit that I have a lot to learn. I have a lot of listening ahead of me, and that’s just fine by me. 

Please know that as certain political issues arise in the Avowed exploration I am not going to be the one doling out wisdom or finding the perfect words to describe what it is to suffer at the hands of white privilege. Part of guiding you through this landscape of modern love is going to be handing the reigns over to those who know and understand more than me and I would encourage you to follow suit. Get comfortable with discomfort, and settle in for some good old fashioned listening.

“We realize that all of these political issues really live in us. They live in our love stories, and our sex lives, and in our marriages.”

Quotes by Liz Susong from Episode 5 "Radical Love" 


Liz + Adam's Wedding

Photographs by Rachel Joy Barehl


Hiking the pacific crest trail


Photograph by: Betty Clicker and Melodie Ann Photography from the first (Un)Convention collaborative styled shoot!

Photograph by: Betty Clicker and Melodie Ann Photography from the first (Un)Convention collaborative styled shoot!


This Glorious Mess

In January Patrick and I traveled to San Fransisco for The Good Food Awards...

Patrick owns Roots Kitchen Cannery, where he turns local Montana produce into delicious small batch hand-canned jam, pickles, and syrups and his bomb diggity Curried Carrot Pickles were a finalist this year (HUGE props to my hunky dude) which guaranteed him a spot in their annual Mercantile!

But before we gathered ourselves for a road trip to the coast I reached out to a few of my fav Bay Area wedding babes to (hopefully) schedule some podcasting, and top of the list was Kindred Wedding Co.

Elle Wildhagen and Zachary Domes photographs were filling my feed with inexplicably tender moments and ambient wedding day vibes. I had loved them from afar and now it was time to see if they were as fabulous in person as they were on Instagram. 

 

Long story short: they were. Actually, they were far more interesting and wonderful than I could have imagined. 

But first...long story longer.

 

Because although I did hear back from Elle and Zach I was saddened to find that not only were they out of town but, further more, they had just been in Bozeman!

You can imagine my disappointment.

But here's the thing: what I discovered in this exchange, that I might otherwise not have known, was that Elle and Zach were traveling across the country on a mission to capture the heart and souls of extraordinary everyday people through intimate photographs and revealing conversation. 

This ongoing project, titled The New Americans, made me want to speak with them all the more, and I resolved to reach out again when their travels concluded. Lucky for me, they were able to find time to speak with me and the resulting conversation is certainly one for the books.


In knowing, We are freed.

I’m not even sure where to begin. This conversation hit so many emotional chords for me, it’s actually left me reeling. 

If I had to pinpoint a through thread for this episode it would be that a relationship is much like a human in terms of it’s evolution. The dark, dirty, messy moments of unrest and disconnection do more for the depth of our devotion than sparkling promises of unblemished commitment ever will. To ignore the vitality of misunderstanding is to sell short a concept so complex it will surely take a lifetime to understand. 

Love is such a magical tangled compound. It is everything glorious and sublime about our experience here on earth, and yet it never ceases to conjure up our darkest truths, harmful habitual beliefs, and deepest rooted fears. 

But, as Elle says:  in this, we are healed. 

Allowing another to see us fully for who we are, warts and all, is what makes this connection so powerful.

Because life is a tempestuous sea of frothing waves. The crashing elemental serf rolls over us with wild abandon, sometimes calm and manageable, often harsh and unforgiving.

And in the center are “We.”

We are a ship built board by tenuous board, sturdy and forgiving; steered by an evolving alliance with our unknowable partners. We are a barge constructed from trust; an assurance that when the rejected caverns of our soul are exposed, our ship will inconceivably strengthen. 

engagement photographs by sara k byrne

Elle mentioned Allain de Botton's article Why You Will Marry the Wrong Person


THE NEW AMERICANS

IN THEIR OWN WORDS

"These days it feels impossible to find much good in the news at all. Sensationalism distracts us from the truth, that the world isn’t really that bad. We’re glad that we don’t actually live in a world as horrible as news programs make it out to be. However, we do think that there should be more media outlets for people to see the world as it is. Good news should be made public just as much as the bad.

Our goal was to do what media often doesn’t do: To share stories that are simple, yet inspiring. And to tell them in an honest way."

They are currently editing an entirely new batch of videos from their 2017 road trip which means you have some time to sift through their 2016 videos, all of which are superb. The gallery is there to stay so take your time and enjoy this unique glimpse into the penetrating stories of our community's unsung heroes. 

 


KINDRED

I'm no photographer, but I know depth and texture when I see it.

I think Elle and Zach have a really intuitive way of capturing the unobserved gestures of affection that add a profound sense of individuality to a wedding. To ensure that this tangled web of moving pieces moves forward in a smooth fashion there is most certainly a necessary formula for weddings, however I don't believe that wedding photographs need reflect the formula.

Often times wedding photographs run together in my memory. For, although the moments were surely distinct, their representation follows that pervasive wedding photo checklist so closely that the glorious mess of life is all but erase from the occasion. 

The Kindred devotion to capturing that mess truly consumes me.

I actually found my eyes welling with joyous tears as I sifted through their website, so moved was I by the photos found therein.

I implore you to do some sifting of your own.


Epilogue

As I write this I am listening to “From Hank to Hendrix” by Neil Young, a song about divorce that was crafted so magnificently as to make the prospect of separation alluring.  Although I have every faith that Elle and Zach are going to go the distance, I find this song somehow appropriate… Their ability to embrace struggle alongside success leads me to believe that, should the road prove too difficult at any point, they will persist in growing and find kindness in their ever ripening sense of empathy for one another.

 

 

A Tale of Two Weddings

Listen to Part I and II of A Tale of Two Weddings on iTunes

subscribe + rate + review


PART I

When I sent out emails announcing the release of The Avowed Podcast to my favorite wedding blogs I couldn't have dreamed that it would lead to this refreshingly thoughtful conversation with the lovely Gabby LaBarbara, editorial assistant at Junebug Weddings, about her very curious journey to the altar...

Gabby's fiancé Patrick proposed after just a year of dating and they were quickly swept up in a whirlwind wedding planning adventure that ultimately led to questions of why they were getting married in the first place, and whether the wedding they had planned was indeed the wedding they wanted.

"You're taught, from the movies or societal expectations that at the moment of the proposal you should be over the moon, you should be happy crying, you should immediately say yes. So that’s what I did. Thats what I projected... What I don’t say is I think I was crying because I was feeling all these complicated emotions. "

In October of 2016 they decide to call off their May 2016 wedding and reevaluate their motives and methods for celebrating the love between them. 

 

"I think I threw a lot of my complex emotions and energy into planning the actual wedding rather than confronting them…"

Then, the same month that Gabby and Patrick were originally slated to be married, Gabby accepted a job as an editorial intern at Junebug, and found herself behind the veil: entrenched in wedding industry culture and ready to tackle her "second" wedding. 

After some understandably rough patches, raw emotions, and plenty of soul searching, Gabby and Patrick set out to craft a new wedding: A celebration of their nuanced love for one another.

With the guest list cut in half, and a fresh uninhibited approach they have since planned a wedding that is sure to set the perfect tone for a lifetime of honest communication, joyous evolution, and genuine expression. 


PART II

I Decided to split this conversation up into two episodes because it was simply too good to be cut into one.

The second part of this conversations offers insight into the new wave approach vendors are taking as we work to shape the wedding industry into an inclusive and supportive community.

Together we discussed vulnerability and empathy as the cornerstones of an ideal vendor/client relationship, and the toxic bi-products of our "bridezilla" culture. 

Gaby also shared the list of vendors she has assembled for her upcoming wedding and you're going to want to set aside some time to explore their work:

 Photographer: Briana Purser Photography 

Videographer: Seth Dunlap 

Florals: Davy Gray 

Cake + Desserts Mindy's Bakeshop 

Typewriter Poet: Cubs The Poet 

Venue: Justine's Secret House 

 

In case you are wondering why I started this podcast:

this is it.

Speaking with people I would never otherwise connect with about complex human emotions, and exchanging ideas about how we can propel the wedding industry into the 21st century delights my challenger spirit.

As we cast these words like stones, thrown with intention and a vibrant hope for the future, it is the impending ripple effect that spurs me onto the next cast.

Fishing for truth and understanding in this confusing world is my own personal anchor, and I implore you to join me in the chase. 

I leave you with these glorious words, spoken by Patrick as that "first wedding" sits happily in the rearview mirror, his hindsight 20/20...

Trial By Fire

I have a confession to make.

I feel like an imposter. 

Not all the time, but often enough. I'm telling you this because pretending otherwise is silly. In our modern 'gram worthy world it is all too easy to assume that everyone is slaying it, and frankly I'm not interested in faking it till I make it. Instead i'm going to:

FAKE IT till I can't pretend anymore, then ask for help and share how I'm feeling because that's how I MAKE IT.

I feel like an imposter because I am constantly pushing myself into uncharted territory. I have this good/bad habit of never allowing myself to get comfortable and since I keep jumping off creative cliffs and diving into the fiery depths of innovation, I often find myself at war with self doubt. 

A few months ago I had the pleasure of attending The Athena Conference (an event run by today's guest, as it were) where truth bombs were dropping left a right, and in the sea of memorable words I wrote down, the quote that has stuck with me most is:

"The gremlins of self doubt only emerge when you are on the edge of greatness. Use the gremlins to sharpen your vision and empower yourself." 

Easier said than done, right?

Yesterday, as I was recording the intro and outro for Episode II (which spans 2 minutes tops - but managed to consume 3+ hours of my time due to the ratchet sound of my voice following a frustrating head cold) I sank deeper and deeper into the gremlin's lair. After yelling "FUCK THIS" into the microphone, which I'm pretty sure is bad juju, I finally decided to walk away and go get my ass handed to me at the gym. 

Walking away is the most difficult thing for me to do. I am always sure that if I just power through the anger and frustration I will somehow find a sweet spot of creative juice and miraculously come out with gold. The answer is (this time, at least) that I was screaming at gold. 

So yes: my voice sounds a little congested, the conversation was recorded months ago on different (more expensive and thus infinitely more finicky) equipment, and the file I ended up with prevented me from editing out the bumps and jostles that were driving me bonkers at 4:30 in the afternoon yesterday. 

But also: the conversation is fantastic! The bumps and jostles aren't even that noticeable! AND I just put out my second episode, which is a smaller milestone than (for instance) my 100th episode, but I'm determined to celebrate life's victories no matter the size.  

Teaching myself to record and produce a podcast with no prior experience is going to make me feel like a fraud... until it doesn't. Because someday this will be as much a part of my toolbox as baking a cake, writing a poem, throwing a ceramic bowl, or soldering a pair of earrings. 


A LOOK AT TODAY'S EPISODE:

BOSS LADY & THE PRINCESS COMPLEX

EPISODE II is an absolutely delightful conversation with Lauren Caselli, and I love every minute of what she has to say. I adore the way that she plows through expectation and addresses the raw uncomfortable truths of running a business, finding love, self analysis, and managing social pressures while being the boss of your own life.

BOSS LADY BASH

Shortly after I met Lauren she invited me to her house for a gathering of 10 creative lady entrepreneurs, and together we spoke some hard truths and celebrated the under appreciated victories that make being your own boss worth while. Over the past two years she has grown this concept into a wonderfully inclusive and supportive community with a series of breathtaking events. 

If you are a lady-preneur in Montana you absolutely must get on her email list. These events sell out in a heartbeat and they are not to be missed. 

THE ATHENA CONFERENCE

Together with Kimberly Shapee, Lauren recently launched The Athena Conference, offering leadership training to women in business. As I mentioned above - it was a truly wonderful experience and I would recommend it to any and every one (bonus: it's not just for woman who RUN businesses!)

V Day / Release Day

You guys: It's Valentine's Day.

Being that I chose to drop the inaugural episode of The Avowed Podcast on V Day, I've understandably been asked repeatedly what my own thoughts are on this most beloved / loathsome holiday... 

For the record I actually really love Valentine's Day, and not because I love chocolate or flowers (though I most certainly do).

I love V Day because I appreciate an annual reminder to tell all of the rad people in my life how much I love and appreciate them. It's like the Thanksgiving day of love, and I am all about love.

I know February 14th is cringe inducing for many of you, but I invite you to join me in taking back Valentine's Day! If you're going to spend money today on your loved ones, let it be spent with intention. Or better yet, make something! Bake something! Glue some damn macaroni on construction paper and watch the smiles come rolling in.

Shower your friends, family, and lovers with the hugs and kisses they (and you) deserve, and don't forget that every holiday is exactly what you make it so if you are feeling the misery today, maybe the person you need to be showing some love to, is you...

This is the perfect day to treat yo self!

As for me, I'll be spending this day promoting the shit out of this podcast, volunteering at my favorite community program for youth in revolt - BYEP, and eating dinner with my favorite dude and the worlds grumpiest pup.

My Valentines: Patrick and Pip


In case you're wondering what I want for valentines day: 

I want for you to subscribe, listen, rate, and review The Avowed Podcast - It only takes a moment, and it puts me one giant step closer to living my dream!

In today's episode I am joined by Stacy Townsend of Townsend Collective, and Anna Boswell of Cast Calligraphy (soon to be Cast & Company). I've titled this episode "The Times They Are A Changin" because in the midst of discussing what it's like to work in the wedding industry we are also comparing and contrasting Stacy's wedding planning experience (way back in 2010) to Anna's current journey in planning her own wedding. 

These two powerhouse woman are unbelievably talented, humble, intelligent, and kind - I am truly honored to be taking my first steps on this wild adventure with them by my side.

Anna Boswell: illustrator, designer, calligrapher, woman in love / Clockwise from top left:

Anna & Tyson's engagement shoot Photographed by Stacy Townsend / A gorgeous invitation suit created by Anna and photographed by Jeremiah and Rachel Photography  / Anna + Tyson announce their engagement on Instagram / Cast Illustration   / Anna  knows good coffee comes from Treeline Coffee Roasters / Cast Watercolor

Cast Calligraphy


Renaissance woman Stacy Townsend  does it all! / Left to Right:

Townsend Jewelry / Townsend Graphic Design / Townsend Photography 

Townsend Collective


A good old fashioned 2010 wedding... / Photographs by Ross James Photography / Clockwise from top left:

R.C. and Stacy take it down to funky town / Guests bring the fire to the dance floor / Tying that knot / Sealing it with a kiss / Stacy's DIY wedding dress / Real couples piggy back into eternity


Because we mentioned the wildly talented Meghan and Jeff Purcell - Don't worry, I will definitely be talking with these two lovelies in the near future...

Purcell Trading 


A Styled Shoot Is Born!  / Left to right:

Quill earrings by Stacy Townsend / Watercolor by Anna Boswell / Fiber Art by Meghan Purcell

I can't wait to put this dream team together!!!

 

 

The Resistance

In an effort to assert transparency as a primary tenant in my life, I am about to get very real with you. 

Like many of you I am grappling with balance at this volatile moment in history. With our democracy hanging on by a thread and basic human rights being discarded like trash it's impossible to decipher an appropriate way to continue living, breathing, and loving. 

Following the election in November I have:

- navigated ongoing depression

- faced the realities of my own privilege, naiveté, shame, and guilt

- attempted to mobilized my pain and fear into activism, outreach, and community involvement

- struggled with finding my place in this mounting hurricane of injustice

And in the midst of all that I've been planning the launch for The Avowed Podcast. I've been attempting to find purchase for my own art, career, and passion and believe me when I say it has been really fucking hard to prioritize personal endeavors when so many people are facing the brutal realities of inequality, hate and prejudice.

If you know how to reconcile the push and pull of these opposing pieces in your life - please share. I have by no means landed on a solution... but here is where I am, right now.

I'm lucky enough to have been given the gift of creativity and sometimes, particularly in times like these, that gift feels inadequate. How am I supposed to help those in need with story telling and design? How could I possible make a dent in the suffering around me with a podcast, or cake?

And then I remember it's not that simple. The war on truth, integrity, and humanity is mounting and it's going to be a long one. It will be necessary to set a manageable pace and healthy boundaries and we will all need to find ways in which to care for ourselves amidst caring for others. We will need to give priority to joy and celebration between heated bouts of activism. That is how the soul replenishes itself. It is the very reason the entertainment industry urges forward, even reaching new heights, in our society's darkest times

Carrie Fisher, who's death rocked my world in truly unexpected ways, once said "Take your broken heart and make it in to art." 

To me this says: spit in the face of darkness and cruelty with empathy, passion, and joy.

I guess I'm trying to say it would seem a poetic disservice to ourselves, and the lives we are fighting to protect, to forget ourself in war... to loose what makes us beautiful and worth saving in the first place. 


So I'm starting a podcast about love. 

I am overwhelmed with inspiration for upcoming episodes, and deeply affected by the interviews I have already recorded. I am urged forward amidst this terrifying time of political unrest, by the concept of love. A concept so uniquely human and commonplace we devote ourselves to it fully without ever discussing what it is... 

What is love, and what is marriage?

Is marriage an abstract concept? A signed document? Words spoken at an alter?  

HOW are we getting married?

What is the difference between a wedding and marriage?

Where do our expectations clash with reality?

 

And yes, I want to get a little conceptual. I want to dive deep and swim around in uncertainty in case we are better able to understand ourselves on dry land. I am eager to speak with individuals and couples from all walks of life about how these intrinsic human issues have touched their lives, and try to pin down what a successful relationship and marriage are built on.

I also want to give voice to the unbelievable people working inside this powerhouse industry! It feels like the word "industry" implies a certain lack of soul, but in reality this is not an industry comprised of large corporations. This is built on the backs of small businesses, run largely by creative and rebellious female entrepreneurs. This is an industry run by woman, predominantly for woman, celebrating what was originally an exchange of women as property.

If that doesn't blow your mind and then reassemble it, than I would suggest reading it again

What I'm getting at is that love and marriage encompass many nuanced concepts and pertinent social issues. 

Feminism + Capitalism + History + Hope + Fear + Sex + Communication + Trust + Laughter + Money + Family + Tradition + Expectation

The whole gang's there. 

Love and marriage are anything but simple. 

 

So let's talk about it.