May 3, 2015


A few months ago, I popped into Anthropologie in Washington, D.C. to browse the elaborate wedding section. I ended up purchasing vow books for our ceremony. One is ballerina pink, while the other is boyishly blue.


his and hers.


Flash forward to mid-April. While JB packed for a work trip, I spotted the vow book tucked safely inside his bag. I wondered, “Is he really working on his vows?” If so, how many pages of the book has he filled? Surely not all of them.

I immediately withdrew my pink vows from my panty drawer. All this time I had been carefully hiding a collection of blank pages. Was I planning to begin just a few days before our biggest day?

As a writer, I assumed my half of the vows would be simple. Words of love would flow from heart to paper with little effort. Despite these assumptions, writing my vows has been one of my hardest wedding assignments yet. It doesn’t help that there is an approaching, hard deadline of June 20th!

Here’s why:

Emotions can run too high:

When I visited JB’s home this past December, I spoke to his mother about reciting our future vows. There was a vivid warning: Don’t make them excessively sentimental. Supposedly, at a wedding Mrs. Peterman attended, the bride divulged intimate vows such as the promise to kiss her groom each night before bed. My future mother-in-law was stuck in the audience somewhere between a smile and a cringe.

Keep vows PG, please.

Remember the purpose: 

Ideally, I’d like to fill my pink pages with lighthearted promises:


Unfortunately, these vows won’t cut it under the chuppah.


I’ve learned that vows are not the appropriate time to unveil a love story. Inside jokes, personal details and entertaining promises are best reserved for speeches. I plan to keep my vows concise and thoughtful. Although the bride and groom are speaking to one another, the ears and hearts of those in the audience should be considered.

Just remember: vows are lifelong, public promises.


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