Foss Forest River, Central Cascades, Washington

“We know that God is everywhere; but certainly we feel His presence most when His works are on the grandest scale spread before us; and it is in the unclouded night-sky, where His worlds wheel their silent course, that we read clearest His infinitude, His omnipotence, His omnipresence.” Charlotte Brontë in Jane Eyre.







three quick comments about the trip:

1. if there is snow on the ground, don’t think the lake is warm enough for swimming
2. be careful on the way down or you’ll slip, fall, ruin your tights, and cut your knee up
3. God makes pretty things

Our Wedding Day

The ever anticipated post on our wedding day has finally come! The wedding day was truly magical. Everyone told us that it would be stressful, things would go wrong, and it would be an awful experience. Well things didn’t go wrong; or if they did I was oblivious (that’s been known to happen too)! in fact, everything really went according to plan and was perfect. Overall, it was a relaxing, emotional, exciting, wonderful day!

We both spent the morning doing gender appropriate activities. Nails and brunch for the ladies and guns for the men. I loved spending the morning with just the girls and having fun!

After lunch, the girls and I headed to and knocked out the decorating. It was fun having all of the ladies come together as a family and decorate! With so many hands, in just a few hours the place was a dream! My OCD prior to the wedding certainly paid off, I think.

We made most of the decorations ourselves. Papa spent hours cutting all the wooden rounds for the tables from a fallen tree; he’s great by the way! Mom and I collected all of the blue glassware from thrift stores to match my grandma’s set that was used on the table for John and me. Add in a few flowers bought from A Touch of Nature Floral and Gifts and you’ve got a party!




Let me start by saying, I love tradition. If a random stranger told me its a tradition to knock three times and do five jumping jacks before entering a library, I’d probably start doing it. With that being said, it took me a while to give in to the trendy “first look” I was afraid our marriage would be destined for failure because we saw each other before the ceremony. In the end two main reasons caused me to give in and do it (which I’d recommend to all brides now by the way)!
1. John was advocating for it
2. It really is more practical
The fact that we were able to get all over our pictures over with before the ceremony made both of us less nervous and allowed everyone to get to eating and enjoying the reception sooner! Bonus: our guest didn’t have to wait an hour to start dinner! So, the following are some sweet photos from our private first look.



I love our friends. I am grateful they loved us enough to celebrate with us. Here are some photos of our good looking friends!




Our florist had the idea of forgoing the usual corsage and opting for a single stem of flower carried down the aisle and placed in a vase. I immediately loved this idea! I was hooked for two reasons.
1. I am a big fan of reusing items and this gave the (grand)mas the flowers they needed (and I wanted them to have) and we could use it as a decoration too!
2. I think it was a beautiful picture of the joining of our families.
I loved it! (hopefully they did too) Our grandmas carried in a single blue hydrangea and our moms carried in white ones.



Our ceremony was officiated by my youth pastor from jr/high school, Luke Bilberry. He taught me so much while he served at Martin’s Mill Baptist Church and I couldn’t have imagined having anyone else be our wedding pastor.



Our unity ceremony was a sand ceremony. Representing that after this day we will forever be one, unable to be separated. Afterwards John prayed for us; our first prayer together as a married couple!



Up until this point, I had made it through the whole day without shedding a single tear; if you know me well, you know that often that is no small victory for me! But then Luke had to go and talk about my salvation, at DNOW in the overflow section of the church; and I lost it.


This may be my favorite picture from the day. I am so grateful for our fabulous . I met Ranjani at my friend Bryn’s wedding, which she photographed. She swept in at the last minute (literally like a week before the wedding when our photographer canceled) and saved the day. And didn’t she do a wonderful job!



And now time for a collection of family pictures!


my family




One HUGE shot with our whole family. We sure do like y’all!


Mr. & Mrs. John Keech



And the reception:



John’s not really a fan of cake. He does love some pie though. So we decided to have a pie bar. Many of our friends and family were gracious enough to contribute a pie or two to it and we ended up with the best collection of homemade pies in East Texas!

Also, we got to bring a family tradition into our wedding! Like I said, I love tradition. This is one I am so glad we got to incorporate. The Troxtell boys always have a dessert baking competition on family holidays with an unbiased third party serving as judge (usually that’s Pappy). The boys did not disappoint; they showed up to our wedding pies in tow ready to have a winner declared! John had the honor of judging and he deemed Kyle the winner this time. (we think, it’s been a while) Thanks for bringing pies boys; it was fun!


A sparkler sendoff!


Oh! and what Aggie wedding would be complete without a shot of the rings!


Until next time,

Ashlee & John