A toast.

Seth and Mackensie, October 2, 2011

A few weeks ago, a few friends of ours asked Steven and I to say a few words at their wedding.

Most good wedding speeches are spontaneous, catch the mood of the event and the lovers and ride it out in an eloquent diddy, complete with laughter and tears and heartfelt words of wisdom that fill everyone to the brim with love and champagne.

Mine was typed, printed, practiced roughly 20 times and even then read word for word on the page, only pausing to look up the one time when I was absolutely sure I wouldn’t lose my place (where I had typed parenthetically “Look up and raise your glass.” —Just in case I forgot what I was up there for in the first place, became disoriented and started crying).

But I still lost my place once and promptly got the hand shakes, made apparent to everyone by the now flapping paper I could no longer control.

I have never been much of a public speaker. Nor spontaneous, as much as I hate to admit it. But I love these two people, and so I meant what I said. However uncomfortable I made everyone.

From the top:

Good evening beloved ones of Seth and Mackensie Bravermen…

I may be a newer friend of Mackensie’s, but due to the relationship between our husbands, and being that Seth is one of my dearest and closest brothers, I can pretty much guarantee we’ll be friends and family for a long time to come, and I couldn’t be more grateful.

I first met Mackensie as the new Craigslist roommate joining me in a ramshackle house of women, known in some circles as the Myrtle Mansion.

She was sweet and shy and mysterious and much, much preferred over the 40-year-old man with a cat who—true story—also replied to the add.

The first time I saw her, her hammock, and her juicer, I knew she’d be trouble for Seth. I told him so.

“You better not meet my roommate. You’ll fall in love with her.”Seth and Mackensie

He, obviously, did not heed my warning.

Shortly after they met for the first time, Seth started hanging around my house much more regularly, casually wearing his guitar, often shirtless, and with a somewhat newfound passion for vegan cooking and fine wine.

They had begun.

It was all a blur of bike rides and porch sitting and bread breaking and fire circles and 
cigarettes and pretty soon you could see it on their faces before either of them were willing to admit it.

Actually long, long before either of them were willing to admit it.

They were in love. A sweet, summery love that makes you wish you had your camera.

Over the last year and a half I’ve had the joy and honor of walking with the two them as they stumble and skip through dating and then engagement, summer and winter and summer again. As they’ve planted and grown and watered their love for each other, their

awe of the Lord and their wonder for the world around them contagiously, leaving a warm trail of Instgrams for their captivated family, friends and fans.

And now here we are, at their wedding day, and the two of them have vowed to be one for a lifetime of bike riding and porch sitting and bread breaking and fire circles and quitting cigarettes.

And I have to say Seth, I was right.

Mackensie is your trouble. She’s your wife. She’s your best friend, your confidant. She’s your lover, your help, your home.

So here’s to the newest, Bravermen branch. (LOOK UP AND RAISE YOUR GLASS. PULL YOURSELF TOGETHER). May the two of you never lose your love of life and search for God. And please, please take some pictures for the rest of us.

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