In 2004, I hired this woman called Donna to work for me
I knew I wanted to hire her within the first ten minutes of her interview
By the end of her second interview, I felt like I had known her forever - and I knew all about her sisters, her children, her nieces, her husband, her son's upcoming wedding and her Mum
So Donna came to work with me and over the years has become a pretty important person in my life
She has seen me through some of my happiest times and she has seen me through some pretty tough times
When Donna left the Company, I was devastated
Thankfully, she stayed in my life
And she has never once not been there for me
She's been there for me when I did not even know I needed her
As the years have passed, Donna's family has welcomed my family into their mix
We've been there for cookouts in the backyard, Weddings, baptisms, and sadly a memorial mass
We tried to cheer Donna up when Dawn left for Texas and spent as much time as possible with Donna and Rick when Lucy was born so they would not miss their own grandkids
Donna and her family are some of the warmest and inviting people you will ever meet
They will make you laugh until you pee
They'll make you hoot and holler just to be heard
And they will jump to your defense before the other guy knows what's hit him!
They are just what a family should be: unconditional with their love, fiercely loyal, a little crazy and a whole lot of fun
One of my favorite family members is Courtney - she's Donna's niece (her Mum is Donna's younger sister)
Courtney is, simply put, one of the most genuine people I have ever met
She is loyal, loving, forgiving, accepting and more mature than I could ever dream of being at such a young age
Her wit and humor are formidable
With Courtney, what you see is what you get.....that is my favorite thing about her
She is who she is
She is what she is
And she is proud and confident of that - and even if she's not, the rest of the world would never know
Courtney has been with Eddie for years - like since high school
Eddie is my second favorite "family" member (another thing I love about Donna's family - if they like you, if they love you, you become their family......)
One time we hired Eddie to do some work for us at my Company - like 5 years ago now - and we still talk about him and how great it was having him around
He is a hard worker, devoted to Courtney, to her family and to his family
He is the kind of guy you hope your own daughter will one day bring home as you know she will be well cared for a loved as she should be
Eddie is who he is
He is what he is
Together, Eddie and Courtney rival the greatest love story of all (I am of course referring to Tori and Dean......)
This past Saturday night, Sean and I were honored to witness their marriage
Just before the music started Eddie stepped out with his groomsmen and lined up at the front of the Church
As the families and the bridesmaids were walking in, I kept glancing back at Eddie who was craning his neck and trying to see if it was Courtney coming down the aisle yet
Every person who walked down appeared to get a smile and a nod from him
He looked like he wanted to yell at them to hurry up so he could get to the best part
Yet at the same time, he looked at ease, happy, content and as in love as any one person could hope to be
The doors opened and Courtney made her way down the aisle with her Mum
Eddie's face lit up
I think his jaw dropped
And then when I turned and looked at Courtney, I literally gasped - not only because she looked radiant and gorgeous and prettier than any bride I have ever seen (including myself and as I've said before, I was totally rocking a bedazzled headband)
I gasped because she looked so serene (though inside I'm sure she'd say her nerves were shot)
She was content
She had the biggest smile on her face and,
She was steps away from her happily ever after beginning
Courtney was the picture perfect image of being in love and being loved
And when she and Eddie finally joined hands, the tears slipped down my face because I got to stand there and watch them in front of their families, friends, God and Irene, become Husband and Wife
I don't even know how to put in words what it is honor it is to be part of something that is so special to two people - really this stands true for any wedding I've ever attended
I think it is an amazing and selfless sacrifice to promise yourself to one person for the rest of your life, and the rest of his or her life
I think it takes a lot of courage and pride to stand before family, friends and God and pledge to not only love one another and take care of one another but to grow together, to communicate openly and honestly with one another, to possibly bring children into this world and raise them together...leaving the world a bit brighter than the way it was when you found it....
The Reception was as fun as any family gathering - good food, lots of laughs, music, dancing, glow in the dark necklaces and masks.....it was just what a reception should be...
Eddie's mother and brother, and Courtney's cousin Alison and her Mum Robin gave four of the best toasts I have ever heard
All four toasts were humorous, heartfelt and honest....just like Courtney and Eddie
And all four toasts made us laugh, made us smile, made us cry and made us realize how special these two young people truly are
Courtney and Eddie:
To you I extend a heartfelt thank you for wanting us, allowing us, inviting us to be a part of your day
I hope the years to come are filled with love and laughs, health and happiness, and family and friends
I hope that your happily ever after is everything you dreamed and hoped it would be
I'll think of you every October 6th and share this Irish Blessing with you as I've shared with others I love, adore, respect and admire:
Happy is the bride that rain falls
May your mornings bring joy and your evenings bring peace.
troubles grow few as your blessings increase.
May the saddest day of your
Be no worse than the happiest day of your past.
May your hands be
forever clasped in friendship
And your hearts joined forever in love.
lives are very special,
God has touched you in many ways.
blessings rest upon you
And fill all your coming days.
Donna, thank you for becoming my friend, for being my friend and thank you for sharing your family with me, Sean and Lucy
To Donna's whole entire family, thank you for sharing Donna and Rick with us, thank you for accepting us and thank you for reminding me what Family is all about
(Side note and a shout out: Courtney's cousin Dean sang a beautiful rendition of Ava Maria
It made me think of her grandmother Irene who I am sure was not only looking down with love and pride but was also probably telling me to stop fidgeting and the girls in the pew in front of me to stop chewing their gum in Church! Dean, it was beautifully sung.....heartfelt and a great gift for not only the Bride and Groom but this guest as well)
Ladies and Gentlemen, I give you Mr and Mrs Edward and Courtney Baro.......and happily ever after
Maria the Mum
What a beautiful tribute to what sounds like a wonderful group! I'm sitting here all teary reading about the wedding. Best wishes Courtney & Eddie!!ReplyDelete
As I read this tribute before I start work....all teary eyed myself! Love to you!