How did you meet? Eric & I met years ago at the wedding of our friends,
Dave & Kim.  They knew that we'd be great for each other, but getting us
together was proving to be tricky for them.  Their wedding gave them the
perfect opportunity.  Isn't it wonderful that on a day when couples are
usually focused on themselves, they took the time to share their love for
each other by introducing two of their favorite friends?  Every year that
Eric and I share, I thank Dave & Kim.  They were so right!


When and how did you get engaged? Eric asked me to marry him with a
beautiful Sapphire engagement ring.  It's a beautiful stone, full of color
and love.


Why did you choose to marry your spouse? Eric is a wonderful husband who
is my true partner in life, both on the bandstand and off of it.  I feel
so lucky that Eric is also my friend who knows me in a way that no one
else does.  He can always sense when I need a good laugh, a good cry, or
just a good listener.  We have a friendship that has grown over the years,
just as we have both grown over the years.  Not every couple can say that.
In Eric, I found a once-in-a-lifetime friendship and a once-in-a-lifetime
love.  I wake up every day full of gratitude for our marriage and our
love.


Tell us about your wedding day. Eric and I are musicians and it was only
natural that we have a celebration of friends, music and love!  Eric's
friends from all over the country came to celebrate with us.  Our ceremony
included a trumpet fanfare and music prepared just for us by talented
friends.  Our favorite moment was the bowl ceremony during the
proceedings:  Eric & I were inspired by Carlos Santana and his wife Cindy
Blackman to incorporate the beautiful and symbolic washing-of-the-hands
into our wedding ceremony. Before we said our vows, we filled a wooden
bowl with rainwater. I washed Eric's hands and he washed mine as a promise
that throughout our marriage we will continue to find it in our hearts to
forgive one another no matter what troubles come into our lives. When we
washed our hands in the bowl of water, all things past were washed away
and we began our new, married life with a spirit of grace and forgiveness.
After we washed each other's hands, we dried them to symbolize compassion,
caring and understanding. The drying of each other's hands also symbolized
vulnerability. In our own vulnerability, we become more caring and
understanding of our mate. In a loving and compassionate marriage, to
achieve the greatest intimacy, you must have the courage to be open and
vulnerable to each other. This ceremony meant so much to us because, like
Carlos and Cindy, we wanted to start our lives together and experience
everything as if it were the first time.   Later that evening, our friends
joined in for a wedding-band-turned-jam-session.   The music, love and
laughter filled the room with joy.


Why does your marriage ROCK? Our marriage ROCKS because we always put our
marriage first.  No matter how crazy life gets, we make sure to always
reconnect and unwind for a while at the end of the day.  We check in with
each other often enough to make sure that we're still on-task and working
as a team for everyday things that need to get done.  This goes a long way
toward eliminating misunderstandings when your days get hectic.  When we
do have conflict (everyone does!) we stay on-topic and handle it without
dragging our relationship into the muck.  We want our children to see what
a happy marriage looks like so that when they grow up, they know what to
look for in a spouse.   Neither of us is afraid to talk about what makes
happy marriages work with our friends and family, and we try to spread
positivity and love wherever we go.  Everything we can do to honor our
marriage is well worth the effort.


Share one tip that has helped your marriage. A relationship should enhance
your life, not complicate your life. You know a relationship is right for
you when you make a conscious decision that nothing you do is going to
destroy it. You start to see your marriage as more than you and your
spouse. It becomes a living, breathing thing in itself that needs to be
nurtured and protected from the temptations of the outside world.
Physically and emotionally, this means you are off-limits to any of the
things that would destroy your marriage (and yes, you know darn well what
those things are).  Always remember that when you are out in the world,
your actions represent your marriage.  When you respect your marriage, and
your spouse does too, it eliminates a TON of emotional turmoil between the
two of you. Soon you'll see that your marriage runs like a well-oiled
machine and you have the energy to handle the other crazy stuff in life
that creeps up.  So ask yourself this question: Do you value your marriage
more than yourself? If both of you say yes, then start acting like it. You
both gotta own it and protect it fiercely. Treat your marriage with
respect, love and care. You'll soon see how easy drama-free living can be.
Peace & Love to you all.


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