I wrote this toast for Crystal & Muddy’s wedding, which was on Sunday, June 12, 2016 (61216 palindrome).
I tried to read this at the wedding, as much as I could, word-for-word, but for those who attended the wedding, you know it didn’t quite work out that way. And I totally forgot a whole section (near the end)!
These words are much easier to read without hearing my emotions pour out, so I decided to post it here.
Thank you all again for helping make Crystal & Muddy’s day so special.
And now, the toast…
- Thank you all for being part of this celebration today for Crystal & Muddy!
- Thank all of you who made extra effort to travel and make it to this beautiful location, and for supporting this beautiful couple.
- Thank you to everyone who helped make this day possible – Muddy’s parents, family, Crystal’s parents, Crystal’s favorite sister and brother-in-law and nephew and niece Miles & Maggie, and family, and all of their friends.
- Lisa. Thank you for your love and support throughout this process and for inspiring me every day to be prepared. I could not have done it without you. You are amazing and I love you!
- Thank you Jacqueline & Andrew, Scott, Jamie, Sierra, Annette, Ricky, Alyssa, Lance, Greg, David, Cameron, Garold, Chelsea, Vicki, Renae & Dave (food), Chris, Mary, Jen, Meredith, Nicki and especially Colleen and everyone for all of your help, and for everyone else who helped put this wedding together, thank you all very much! Edit: And Erin Waltner for more pictures, and Katie for gluten-free cake!
AND NOW FOR A FEW WORDS…
You give them life. You make sacrifices. You hustle, every day, to earn just enough to feed the baby. You do everything you can to provide them a safe, loving home. You carry them when they can’t carry themselves. You check for monsters under their beds, and then you give your comfortable, confident, fearless daughters hugs and kisses before they go to sleep. You take them to school. You educate them. You feed them. You put notes in their lunches so they are reminded, every day, that they are loved. You guide them. You clothe them. You teach them the importance of family. You console them. You inspire them. You laugh with them…watching old episodes of Psych separately, but together. You cry with them…while watching The Little Mermaid. You survive conflicts with them. You move their stuff. You move their stuff again. Multiple times. You share your ideas, your opinions, your faith, your fears, hopes and dreams with them. You keep in touch. You listen to them. You advise them. You learn from them. You silently hope that they’ve listened, that they’ve learned, and remembered everything you’ve attempted to do, to help make them the strong, brilliant, talented, beautiful, independent, successful, positive contributions to the world you’ve always wanted.
As I mentioned at Crystal’s sister Jacqueline’s wedding, I’ve been fortunate enough to see these hopes realized twice in my lifetime. Crystal & Jacqueline have truly both equally made my life worth living, and having Lisa’s daughter Cortney in my life for the past 6+ years has also been a true blessing. But today, we focus on Crystal.
Spontaneous. Passionate. Brilliant. Beautiful. Inspiring. Positive. Motivating. A leader. Strong. Strong-minded. Strong-willed. Talented. Independent. Social. Heart of gold. Sharp tongue. Fierce. Lives with a smile. Loves with a smile. Laughs with a smile. Quick wit. Confident. Knows self-worth. And always right.
But enough about me…
Crystal is, of course, all of these things…and more!
I could give you a thousand examples of each of these, but I will share just one.
Crystal, I love you. But I must share…
Crystal cannot sing.
- Not even a little.
- Not at all.
Coming from a passionate, music-loving father, and her marrying a music-loving husband, this has been somewhat surprising.
…until you consider the following:
The fact that Crystal cannot sing, and the fact that she knows this fact, and the fact that she even acknowledges this fact, doesn’t seem to affect her.
Crystal will sing anywhere, anytime, for anyone, for any reason.
…and I love it.
Crystal’s confidence and ability to love and accept herself is genuinely inspiring for us all.
With Mohamed Ali’s recent passing, Crystal will surely inherit the title of Greatest Of All Time or “GOAT”, but we’ll just call her little GOAT. As you know, there is a lot to love in this 4 foot, 11 and 1/2 inch lightweight.
Crystal’s spontaneous arrival on earth literally changed my life forever. For a few of my more successful stories in life, I must give a lot of credit to Crystal. Because of her, and later her & Jacqueline, I had to keep going. Because of her, I could not stop. For a long time, I was in a mindset that I had to feed the baby, feed the baby, feed the baby. No time to party, no time to rest, no time to be a rock-n-roll star, no time to worry about my life or my losses. The baby isn’t aware of your trials. Our children are constant reminders that life goes on. She just looks up at you, smiles, and without a word, says “feed me”, “give me shelter”, “take care of me”, “love me”.
I’m tremendously proud of Crystal for all of her accomplishments. Although she has a caring Mother, new and existing motherly and fatherly figures, a whole tribe of family, and the greatest father of all time, all supporting her, I can honestly say that Crystal did most of it on her own, and in her own way. But of course, she couldn’t do it without all of us!
Most recently, she has created a loving home, with many plant children, and has used her gifts and her talent, her Bachelor of Arts from Gonzaga University 2011, and the influence of her great Uncle Rich, to secure a graphic design job, which she loves, and is already making the online world a more beautiful place, and changing the world. Crystal has always been resourceful, but I’m extremely proud of how she has diligently pulled herself out of many of life’s trials, and has managed to overcome life’s tribulations and be in the fantastic place she is in now…with Muddy.
And so it is Muddy’s great, fortunate opportunity now to look in those big brown eyes and hear…
“feed me”, “give me shelter”, “take care of me”, “love me”
…and I know he will!
Some of us first saw Muddy on a local TV show named “Seattle Refined”. Link: http://seattlerefined.com/the-show/watch-creepy-cocktails-12th-dogs-and-a-haunted-house-in-port-gamble
Through some incredible magic, we were able to capture some of the reactions around the world, which you will see in a moment.
Over the last few months, I’ve learned from many people about how Muddy takes care of Crystal, and how he works so hard to make her happy, and I have also had the pleasure of observing this for myself. They are good for each other. “Adulting” is a term a lot of people are using these days, but Crystal & Muddy are truly living this. Do you all agree?
Oops! I totally missed reading this entire “Toast” section!
Now I would like to toast, so I would like to ask you a favor.
Will you please raise a glass with one hand, and raise your other hand and reach toward Crystal & Muddy.
For those of you with only one hand, I would like you to put down your drink and raise it toward Crystal & Muddy.
Now please send all of your positive thoughts, your prayers, and your love to Crystal & Muddy.
Crystal & Muddy, look around.
All of these people are here today with you and will always be here for you.
This is your tribe. Your village.
Please remember that we are all here for you.
And to the loving couple, I simply ask that you follow the advice often posted in video stores across the world…in the 80s:
Be kind. Rewind. Be kind. Rewind. I’m still learning this myself, but please show us all. Be our leaders. Show us how to love. Be kind to each other.
Now some of you may have seen a video for Jacqueline and Andrew’s wedding about Andrew’s Request.
Since this situation was a bit different, I wanted to make sure Muddy was indeed prepared to take care of Crystal. As you might expect, I put Muddy through a rigorous round of testing. In many of these tests, which you are about to see, I play the part of Crystal.
Would you like to see how he does?
Roll the film!