Beliefnet
The Bliss Blog

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As I am typing these words, I am curled up on a comfy couch in a B & B (or more appropriately ‘bee and bee’) called The Hive. It is located in the Ontario Canadian town of Leskard. I trekked up here on Friday from my Bucks County, Pennsylvania home, taking to the roads at 8:30 a.m. and arriving (three potty stops and one gasoline stop later) at around 5:00 pm. The roads were clear, with minimal traffic as I listened to music, sang, danced (yes, I dance in the car sometimes…and as I was doing so, I remembered a story told to me by a Canadian friend who was stopped by a police officer here in the states for doing that!)  and enjoyed the brilliant summer scenery en route. I was excited to arrive to celebrate the wedding of my friends Shayne Traviss and Tim Emberley who embarked on their relationship 18 years ago when introduced by a friend.

Shayne and I cyber-met back in 2011 and then he introduced me to his partner at a conference all three of us  attended that year.  At the time, Shayne was launching additional radio shows on Vivid Life to enhance an already stellar line-up. He offered me the opportunity to create my own show, called It’s All About Relationships. As we worked together, albeit long distance, we got to know each other well. When he told me that he and Tim were tying the knot, I was thrilled and began making plans for heading Northward.

When I stumbled out of the car, I felt as if I had stepped into a faerie land paradise as I was greeted with a hug from Elsii Faria who is co-owner, with Kevin Craddock of The Hive. I breathed a sigh of surrender as I entered  from drivetime into playtime. This eco-friendly haven tucked in the woods has a European country side elegance to it, with natural touches, such as river rocks around the wood burning stove, polished to a high finish hardwood floors, plush bath towels, big bottles of shampoo, conditioner and body wash in the spacious showers, rather than the rather wasteful mini bottles, as well as my favorite, peppermint soap at the sink. The breakfast, which is self serve, includes organic juices, almond and soy milk, cereals, eggs, fruit and bread. The Hive is also a holistic retreat center where I will be teaching next year. What makes the place all the more wondrous is the love that goes into it.

Over the weekend I met hug to hug, friends  I had only known via the marvels of modern technology and the phenom of Facebook:  Crystal-Lee Quibell , Sharon Quirt, Jodi Clauss Salata, Jeff Brown, Susan Frybort and Milana Vinokur. I had the joy of re-uniting with another friend Eloise Morrison and my angel-agent Raquel Benavidez.  When I checked into my room, I found a lovely Canadian care package from Shayne and Tim that included a mug with a bear on it, maple syrup, votive candles, a box of Smarties and ketchup potato chips, as well as a beautiful card that had me in tears.


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After a bunch of us arrived, Shayne led us on a tour of the grounds and showed us where the ceremony would take place the next day. The wonderland includes a clear flowing over rock tumbling stream. Icy cold, it chilled the heat from the drive and the mud between my toes was a welcome relief. Gathered on the deck were the families of Tim and Shayne and together we dug into pizza, salad and a rainbow decorated, sparkler bedazzled birthday cake. In addition to celebrating nuptials the next day, Shayne was turning 41.

The morning of the wedding dawned bright and breezy, as requested, rather than the possibility of rain that was forecast. Clearly, the weather devas were with us. Country chic decor highlighted the festivities, as patchwork quilt blankets, with bottles of mineral water, goblets and picnic baskets were scattered across them.

The ceremony was officiated by Spiritual Minister Sharon Quirt who created a sacred space in this impromptu chapel in the woods that began with cleansing, with the burning of sage, coming from a Native American tradition. She then spoke of the relationship between these two men who have seen each other through joys and challenges. They were garbed in black jeans, white shirts, suspenders and bow ties made of bird feathers, as were their male attendants, with the women wearing flowing white with earrings and hair clips similarly embellished and Sharon having donned a pale blue print dress as she presided over the ceremony. A handfasting ritual incorporating a Tibetan scarf that was wrapped around their joined hands reinforced the idea that their lives were bound one to the other and that with each knot tied, they hearts were as well. They acknowleged that although it was not their intention, they might inadvertantly hurt each other. They affirmed that it was indeed their intention to love and support each other for the long journey they were on. Sharon asked us all to join in the bond with them as we suppported their marriage. We all enthusiastically agreed.

The music that enhanced the service and the celebration that followed, was offered by a sweet couple named Sarah Frank and Luke Fraser who call themselves The Bombadils, so named after a characted in the Lord of the Rings series. Celtic-folk-mystical-magical is how I would describe them.

The food was phenomenal and simple. Cheeses, bread, fruit, sweet treats abounded.  The wedding cake was a luscious vanilla with custard filling shaped like a pineapple, enwrapped in gold fondant.

Far and away, the sweetest treat was the love fest that occurred all weekend long. I will carry the residual energy with me as I make the trip back home.

For Shayne and Tim (change the lyrics a wee bit), wishing you a life long loving relationship. You are off to a grand start. <3

 

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