The Long Way Home

Happy (Halloween) Anniversary

photo by Lorraine Plaikner

Not only is Halloween our favorite holiday, it also happens to be the day that Jeff and I decided to get hitched in 2008. I’ve never been the girl to have bride-fantasies — hell, I never even thought I’d get married — so the idea of planning a wedding was a nightmare for me. We thought it would be more fun if we treated the affair like a giant Halloween party.

We kept it simple: 105 guests, no bridal party and asked our friends and family to arrive in costume. Throughout the entire planning, we promised to keep true to ourselves by doing it our way, no interference from others (and anyone who has planned a wedding will tell you how people will put their two-sense in. Brides, stay strong!). 

Halloween wedding

r: photo by Lorraine Plaikner. l: our cake topper

We don’t belong to a church, and didn’t want to rush around trying to join one just for the sake of a wedding, so to ‘keep it legal’ we were married at the justice of the peace in Bloomfield on October 30.On October 31, our vows were written and delivered by a scarecrow, aka, my friend Mike Bunn. After 9 months of planning and knowing every detail of the event, he offered to do this for us so that we could be surprised. His words — our promise to each other — moved most everyone there to tears and laughter:



photo by Lorraine Plaikner

I love you.

You are my best friend.

You are my Monster.
Today, I pledge myself to you in marriage.
I promise to encourage you and inspire you,

to laugh with you

and sometimes laugh at you,

I promise to love you when our relationship is simple,

and to continue loving you when it takes effort. 

I know we both will change,

individually and together,

but I’ll always accept you for exactly who you are, the only person I want to spend my life with.

When I need to remind myself why I made this promise to Jeff, I re-read our vows and know how lucky we are to have found one another. Who else will put up with my compulsive list-making, singing in the shower, and fear of highways? He’s the man who encouraged me to keep taking photos and who loves to cook me dinner and make beautiful, surreal paintings.


"for better or for worse" by Jeff Schreckengost

Marriage is a journey that I never thought would be so challenging and so amazing. If I could call anything close to home, it’s being with Monster. 

portrait of Jeff as Krampus (or Satan, or whatever)

portrait of Jeff as Krampus (or Satan, or whatever)

Halloween annivesary

paper is the first anniversary traditional gift.



5 Comments so far
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I’m just so happy and grateful that you guys found each other, I believe it was not circumstance or coincidence, but God’s timing! Brad and I hope for future blessings for you both (eventually your own little monster? maybe) and that you continue to appreciate and love each other unconditionally!


Comment by Becky

you both make me smile.


Comment by kim rullo

hi lisa- see, i read your blog too! thanks for visiting mine and for the kind words.

this post is really lovely and makes me so very happy for you both. rick and i did the same sort of thing- only we planned a wedding in 6 weeks! but, like you, we did it all our way and didnt let anyone tell us how to do it. it was perfect and wonderful and exactly what we wanted, i even wore a black wedding dress!

congrats to the both of you- not only for your one year anniversary, but for finding and loving each other. its such a special thing!


Comment by charissa

I love you!
Happy Anniversary!!!


Comment by Jeff

I love you too, sweetie – I’m glad somebody’s reading this thing!


Comment by Lisa

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