I wrote the last post specifically for any who might think that my post about feeling sad meant that I’d lost my faith or my ability to see the good in my life.  Nothing could be further from the truth.  Indeed, I think that hard times often bring into sharper focus the greatest blessings in your life, so that you see more clearly what is good, what is pure, what is true.  And so often, you find that the very things you thought important are trivial and the things you thought trivial are important. 

So, rest assured that I am still mindful of my blessings—big and small.   And one of the big ones happened just recently…when Ariel got herself hitched. 

Yes, that’s right…our baby girl got married.  It was a lovely wedding, though there were glitches, including a heavy downpour just as they started saying the vows.  We were all soaked (except for the bride and groom), and I will forever be immortalized in the wedding pictures as mother-0f-the-bride looking like a drowned rat.  But what I’ll remember best is the way Cameron and Ariel looked at each other–with pure and unadulturated love.   And that’s all that matters really.

Ariel and her doting Daddy (Tom’s hair was wet from the downpour, but he still looks handsome, I think. And Ariel, of course, is beautiful)

I’ve mentioned before what an…umm…unconventional family we are (which is probably obvious from my unconventional blog).  So before I got to know Cameron (a UNC-CH graduate, like Ariel), I worried that he might not fit into our family or, even worse, find us weird.  But after spending time with him, my fears were somewhat assuaged and I began to believe that he was just quirky enough (and accepting of our quirks) to fit in just fine. 

But it was the cows that completely put all my fears to rest.

Shortly after he and Ariel got engaged, they came for a visit.  But Cameron did not come empty-handed.  No indeed. He came bearing gifts.  He came with cattle, to be exact—two of them.  Holsteins—a fine bull and heifer. 

I looked at them and said, “I don’t know, Cameron.  Sure, these are fine cattle—healthy and strong.  But I think she’s worth a dowry of at least three bovines.”  I was going to milk this for all it was worth.  I was udderly shameless. 

But Cameron was not cowed.  He smiled and reminded me that a dowry is actually what the bride’s parents give the groom’s family.  His two cattle, he said,  were the bride price.  Yep, that Cameron is a smart one, for sure.

Oh dear.  A dowry.  I hadn’t figured on this.  What could we possibly offer?  And then I remembered my apple nut bread.  Cameron loves the stuff, even better than my oatmeal cookies.  So we quickly struck a deal that promised a lifetime supply of apple bread, and Tom and I graciously accepted the Holsteins as our bride price, though I still think Ariel is a three-bovine girl.

And now, Ariel and Cameron are back from their honeymoon and happy in their comfy newlywed nest.  And the bull and heifer are happy, too, grazing in our mountain pasture.  They love how the grass grows so high and lush around here.

But our fine bovines are a bit wary about the animal life in these hills.   Can’t really blame them if they steer clear of some critters here.  After all, a few of them are…well…real dodoes. 🙂


22 Responses to “Blessed”

  1. Elora Says:

    Love you, girl! You’re tops! Best wishes to Ariel and Cameron from some really weird people over in West Virginia who they don’t know!


  2. Martha Says:

    Loved this post! What a happy time. You got me thinking about my own two girls; how exciting it will be if they get hitched in the future.

    Yes indeed, your daughter is beautiful. Her dress was just lovely. And your husband does look very handsome. Where’s a picture of the proud mom??

    Congratulations to the newlyweds. I wish them a lifetime of happiness, health and prosperity. With love and respect for one another, they will live a blessed life.

    I’m so happy for you, Beth. From a friend way up north in Canada.

    Weird and loving it!

  3. Nancy Says:

    What a beautiful couple! How lovely to celebrate the union of two sweethearts just after a downpour- like the sun coming out and a rainbow arcing hope across the sky. Many blessings to you all!

  4. CountryDew Says:

    Wow, congratulations to Ariel and to you, Mom, for doing such a fine job of sending her off into the world. How special!

  5. Jayne Says:

    Snort, snort!! Love this post and seeing your baby girl on her hitching day!! Yep, I’d say the apple nut bread surely sealed the deal! XOXO

  6. Betsyfromtennessee Says:

    Hi There, So glad to get home and back to blogging. We did have a fabulous trip–but home is pretty nice also!!!!!

    Oh Beth—I’m so happy for Ariel and Cameron. What a gorgeous daughter you have…. Glad that Cameron can fit into the family so well…. LOVED this post… I’d love some of that Apple Nut Bread myself!!!!


  7. Chris Says:

    Congratulations and very best wishes for the happy couple. He looks like a fine addition to the family. Ariel is probably worth a whole held of cows, but we won’t quibble. 🙂

  8. Ruth Tasgal Says:

    Thank you so much for sharing this momentous and special event! The pictures were great–just need one of Mom and the bride! Blessings, Ruth

  9. clairz Says:

    This is just beautiful, Beth. Blessings on them and on your family.

  10. The Southern Lady Says:

    Such a beautiful bride and handsome groom. What a lovely couple they make. I know you are so proud and happy for Ariel and Cameron. I love his gift. At first glance I thought they were real animals! lol. I bet the scenery for the wedding was some of the most beautiful mountains in the world. Congratulations to the bride and groom from an old weirdo in Kentucky.

  11. Jes Says:

    Oh, Congrats to Ariel! Looks like their wedding was beautiful. And the cows, oh, too cute 🙂

  12. sweetflutterbys3 Says:

    Congratulations all around! Your daughter is just gorgeous and her husband is as handsome (and quirky) as they come. Many blessings to them in their marriage. It’s just the beginning of their adventure. Oh, how I envy them 🙂

    PS I love all the cow references!

  13. Vicki Lane Says:

    A lovely bride (And a very punny story!)

  14. Jeff Says:

    All we need now are sketches of the cows by Ariel! Just teasing … what wonderful news!

  15. Debi Says:

    She’s beautiful Beth! I can see you all are a lovely family! But where are YOU? Com’on now…

  16. colleen Says:

    What a beautiful bride! A wedding in nature is my favorite even if it rains. I went to one recently where it rained and someone said, “a wet knot never comes undone.”

  17. Darla Says:

    Beautiful bride, charming story! Bright blessings to all!

  18. Ariel Says:

    Thanks to all of you for your incredibly sweet comments (especially from all of you weird people; we are obviously peas in a pod even if you don’t know me). Thank you for your thoughts and blessings and prayers too, as they are so important as Cameron and I embark on our wonderful new life together. We are thrilled and utterly in love. (Or should I say, “udderly?”)

    To everyone wondering: we just got photos back from our photographer, so I’m sure there will be more to come! (Mommy’s hair got wet when it rained, so you might have to twist her arm to get her to post photos of herself, though I think she’s beautiful no matter what state her hair is in. If you just comment over and over about it, she’ll have to post them, right??)

    Colleen, I just love “a wet knot never comes undone.” 🙂

  19. sweetridgesisters Says:

    Congratulations! What an absolutely beautiful dress your daughter is wearing. She is truly lovely. I am beyond impressed by the bovine bride price. No one has ever brought my parent’s anything so impressive. I will suggest it for the future.

  20. Clara Melvin Says:

    What a beautiful daughter you have. The dress is perfect for her….beautiful too. Give them my best wishes for a happy future together. Now I want to see pictures of the beautiful Mommy!

  21. eemilla Says:


  22. Rider Says:

    The picture of Tom’s and Ariel’s beaming faces is wonderful, Ms. Blue. Their faces tell us that it was a good day.

    Their faces tell us something else. They tell us that Tom and Ariel are good people. Good to the bone. Good through the heart.

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