May 18, 2021


May 18, 2002—a lovely wedding day for Patrick and Julia in Maryland!  I thoroughly enjoyed the weddings of both my children—and continue to rejoice over their marriages.  When I recall this wedding weekend, my mind is filled with images of so many friends and family who came to celebrate with Patrick and Julia.

Heather was living in Charlottesville and a few months before the big day, she and I drove up to Annapolis to have lunch at Julia’s parents’ home and then went with Patrick and Julia to look for the perfect spot to host their rehearsal dinner.  When we walked into a dimly lit Irish restaurant and pub called Galway Bay, we knew we’d found it!  There was an Old World charm to the dining room and the Irish catering manager was gracious.  We could reserve a fairly large dining room for the event but our expected number of guests was somewhat larger than their maximum. He was cheerfully confident they could accommodate us anyway—and we selected two delicious menu options. 

With a name like Connelly and a honeymoon planned for Ireland, Galway Bay was perfect.  It was a lovely evening—and the room was packed!  No one complained about being in cramped quarters.  Wonderful dinner conversation and then so many speeches by special friends and relatives of the bride and groom.  Lots of laughs, a few tears and ever so many hugs.

We enjoyed meeting all the Shoemaker aunts and cousins.  Bill and Barbara were so gracious and welcoming to everyone there to celebrate their only daughter’s wedding.  Julia’s older brother Dave was a groomsman.  Her other brother Jon (a Navy pilot) was away on active duty, but his two adorable little girls filled in for him—as flower girls!

Our family is much smaller—but I was thrilled that three of my nephews and their wives made the trip to Maryland for the weekend—Buzz and Becce, John and Kay and Jerry and Marilyn.  And Bill Connelly and his son Will came, too.

I had moved to Nashville the year before—but of course we had many friends in Columbia, South Carolina.  Those who traveled up for the wedding included the Faulks, the Christians, Barb Perrin and Earleen Michels, Terry Cook, and the Crumps.  A whole new set of friends there were grad school classmates at RTS Orlando—Dan and Elise Claire, Bob and Jill Reid, Todd Jones, Glenn Lucke and others. Add to those, many childhood and college friends of Julia’s—and you’ll have an idea of the atmosphere at the rehearsal dinner, wedding and reception. 

Happy 19th wedding anniversary, Patrick and Julia!

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