While human rights activists are seeing progress in countries such as Saudi Arabia, some causes remain stagnant. With little headway on the Trump administration’s hostility towards Mexico, an interracial couple decided to make a statement. Mexican bride Evelia Reyes married San Diego native Brian Houston at the steel border gate dividing both countries.
“It’s a statement that love has no borders,” [said] Houston… “Even though we are divided by a giant fence here, we can still love each other on both sides of the fence.”
Though Reyes has applied for a green card, the process could take over a year. For the ceremony, Border Patrol opened the gates, known as the “Door of Hope” for an hour. Relatives passed through for a mere three minutes to greet and embrace one another before shuttling back onto either side. Border Angels executive director Enrique Morones arranged the ritual.
“While some people want to build walls, we want to open doors,” Morones said.
Opened only for the 6th time sine 2013, the border is a symbol of hard times — but also a reminder than we can overcome them.
Meaningful gestures are what get people by in difficult times. Domestic abuse victim Kyleigha Scott found solace in her dentist, who repaired a broken tooth for free. For Las Vegas mourners, it was a healing garden that brought people on opposite sides of the spectrum together. For 5-year-old Sophia Chiappalone, it was best friend Hunter who eased the pain of her heart condition. The two “married” before Sophia’s fourth surgery.
“Just seeing Sophia’s smile, he didn’t complain once,” Hunter’s mother said of the photo shoot. “He was genuinely having a fun time. They were laughing together, tickling, swinging and on the slides. I think he really enjoyed it. I think it makes him happy to see her happy.”
Fortunately for Sophia, Hunter’s mother Tracy Laferriere’s own BFF was photographer Marisa Balletti-Lavoie. Wanting in on the charming surprise was Bliss Bridal, who provided a gown and veil. To say the photos are adorable is an understatement. However, reality is also bittersweet.
“I wish that she keeps her fighting spirit. And I hope she never loses her quality of life … no matter what the end result is.” [said Sophia’s mother Kristy.]
All the best, little Sophia!
When it comes to weddings, it’s all about the bride and groom. No matter the price tag, food and decor are all up to the lovebirds. However, receptions can be wasteful, and newlyweds are starting to do something about it. For one British couple, it was all about serving up a zero-waste feast. But sustainable ceremonies aren’t the easiest to pull off — at least not without the help of Day Maker Events.
“Many ask for a green wedding these days. People show concern over the use of plastics and other non-biodegradable materials for the decorations. So, we thought why not go back to the past and our valuable traditions!”
To start a new age of wedding trends, the Kochi company in India provides a slew of charming decorations made entirely of coconut products. From grand arches to leaf plates, Day Maker Events knows how to keep it green. And definitely pretty.
“It is environment-friendly and it benefits farmers, too… Above all, the cost is very less compared to other types of decorations. Disposal after use will also not be an issue.”
The best part? Hiring them won’t cost you over a thousand bucks. Interestingly rustic, it shows us one thing: sustainability can come with style!
It’s startups like ChemoCars that ease everyday difficulties for struggling cancer patients. Though burdens have mitigated over the years, for some, there isn’t much of a light at the end of the tunnel. Still, women like Heather Mosher can make the best of a bleak situation. The 31-year-old married beau David Mosher only 18 hours before her passing.
“I saw her sick,” [said] Mosher… “I saw her in a lot of pain and she didn’t give up until she married me. It is so humbling that someone could love me like that.”
Mosher proposed to his wife over the holidays of 2016. Five days later, she was diagnosed with a quick-spreading cancer, which caused her health to deteriorate. Despite the verdicts, friends and family promised Heather joyous festivities.
“I was with her every single day at the hospital that week, and I wasn’t in the mood to celebrate,” [friend Christina] Karas said. “… I just had to get into wedding mode because my heart was in ‘losing my best friend’ mode. I just thought, ‘For Heather, I’m going to do this.”’
Despite a bittersweet end, Heather is proof that good things can come of the most tragic of circumstances.
It’s the season of gowns and tuxedos and newlyweds are taking headlines by storm. A British couple is being praised for hosting a zero-waste wedding reception. Now, a Texas duo is being applauded for donating their wedding meals to Hurricane Harvey victims.
“Everyone in Houston right now is doing everything we can to try to help. Once we were able to get out there and do something for the community, it felt really amazing.”
Preparation took place at the Aishnel House, a nonprofit dedicated to caring for patients at Texas Medical Center. According to would-be bride Dayna Skolkin, her late mother was a co-founder of the group.
“We were very fortunate to fare so lucky in the storm, but so many others weren’t. It was the obvious decision that we needed to get our and help,” Skolkin added. “It was therapeutic for us to get out of our own personal feelings of sadness to do something productive for the community.”
The couple helped prepare chicken, mashed potatoes, and vegetables. It may not have been the gourmet three-course meal they imagined, but it remained to be a special one.
Weddings are, more often than not, an expression of perpetual love between two people. Occasionally, love goes beyond just the couple. While two newlyweds were hosting a zero-waste reception, another two postponed their special day to help hurricane victims. Just last weekend, a Canadian groom — suit and all — rescued a little boy drowning in a nearby river.
“For several minutes these kids were following us, and I was just keeping an eye on them because they were standing close to the water,” [said groom Clayton Cook] “Then while Brittany was getting her solo shots taken I realized only two were standing on the rock ledge. I saw the boy in the water struggling to keep his head up. That’s when I jumped down.”
Way to be a well-dressed hero. The Cooks’ wedding photographer captured the valorous moment and the snapshot has, of course, gone viral.
“We’d like to think most people would probably make the same choice,” [said Brittany.]
“That’s Clay to me… It’s something he would just instinctively do.”
Perhaps Clayton’s quick thinking and selfless spirit is the reason Brittany is head-over-heels for her groom.
For the recent victims of Harvey and Irma, several knights in shining armor have come to the rescue. This includes big businesses like Houston Bike Share, that are making donations to families who have lost cars. They also include individuals such as this air force couple who postponed their wedding to rescue Florida citizens.
Michael Davis and Lauren Durham were supposed to get married in mid-September. But one week before the big day, the couple decided to skip their scheduled wedding in order to rescue strangers from Hurricane Irma.
Both are medical technicians, and while their hearts were with one another, they were also with the victims who needed them. Instead of wedding on Atlantic Beach, the two exchanged vows in a Florida hangar.
“The Air Force lives by the creed ‘service before self,’ ” Davis says. “So that’s what we’re here for, to put the citizens first.”
I guess, then, that it’s true. Love can move mountains. Or, in this case, move victims to safety.
With technologies like the carbon calculator allowing us to determine our impact on the environment, there is no reason we shouldn’t be more eco-conscious. For this newlywed British couple, it didn’t take an app to host a zero waste wedding reception. A combination of patience and careful planning was all it took to prepare a sustainable feast.
Charlotte and Nick contacted the Real Junk Food Cafe in Wigan, which intercepts food still fit for human consumption but heading for landfill, and has the slogan “feed bellies, not bins”.
The couple first successfully obtained frozen chicken and soft fruit rejected by various supermarkets. With only a day before the wedding to go, there was much to do — but not much to buy.
“We’d never catered for a wedding before and I had a few sleepless nights wondering exactly what food would come in,” explains Shirley Southwood, who with partner Ann Fairhurst founded the cafe two years ago.
“The only item I had to buy was a bottle of white wine for the sauce,”
Bride Charlotte holds the sentiment that while weddings can be an opportunity for “over-expense”, they can also be low-impact. She and hubby Nick even chose to forego a traditional wedding list, instead opting to ask guests for secondhand goodies. If a thrift store gown isn’t your thing, maybe a food waste buffet could be. It may sound gut-churning, but if it tastes delicious, why not?