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Nina and Graham married

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Nina and Graham got married in Stevns Klint, Denmark, near a cliff made of 60 million year old chalk cliff that might soon enter in the UN World Heritage list (!). (More about Stevns Klint and the Klintgården B&B here.)  Nina is Danish, and Graham is English. The whole event was a great mix of both.

When I went to the church to have a look a week before the wedding, I spoke with the woman in charge and she said that this would be a special ceremony because there would be two ministers. Interesting I thought. They were bringing someone from England. A week later, at the ceremony, I looked around and wondered “Where is Graham’s father?” Then I saw him–he was the minister!

After the ceremony, the guests walked along the cliff to Nina’s parents’ farmhouse (we’re talking really big, thatched roof, whitewashed, traditional Danish farmhouse that Nina’s parents have turned part of into a bed and breakfast) for the rest of the celebration. Walking through an arbor of Danish flags, the two were showered with rice, and everyone had Pimm’s and cake in the garden. The Pimm’s cocktail was made in the traditional way with purple borage flowers, which came right from their garden. The garden covered several acres with a lush maze of hedges, trees, flowers, berry bushes, and vegetable patches, with nooks, and surprises all through it. Guests had set up tents in the far reaches of the garden, and fire pots followed handmade stone walls.

The dinner alternated food and toasts, with several instances of foot stomping and glass tapping. Foot stomping means the couple has to get under the table and kiss (see under table photo), and glass tapping means they have to stand on their chairs and kiss. If the groom leaves the table, all of the men need to line up to kiss the bride, and vice versa if the bride leaves. The guests all took the “Nina and Graham Pub Quiz,” and it included a soccer shootout, a Danish/English beer blind taste test, and some Danish tongue twisters for poor Graham (I feel your pain!).

After dinner, everyone moved to the “pub”–a part of the farmhouse connected to the barn, where the dancing began…and continued to the weeeeee hours of the night. At which point, a few of the guests had a high speed run through the 6′ high rapeseed field outside the barn. Quite impressive considering how tall and strong those plants are! (I know because I was running right after them! Thankfully, they had cleared a path for me ; ))

Dress: Mariah Victori, Frederiksberg Flowers: Marlene Christensen Blomsterdekoratør, Frederiksberg Cake: family friend (Pamela Hope) Food: Anettes Mad, Store Heddinge BBQ: grillcatering.dk (super yummy barbeque!) Beer: Stevns Bryghus Tent: Teltmesteren-Stevns.dk Venue: klintgaard B&B,

Little Kids Rock Benefit at Facebook Headquarters

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Little Kids Rock is an amazing organization dedicated to “restoring and revitalizing music education in U.S. public schools.” LKR brings free music instruction and instruments to under-served schools in the U.S. Nationwide, it has served more than 235,000 students at over 1,600 schools in 25 cities. (Read more about how Little Kids Rock works here.) Honorary Board Members include Bonnie Raitt, Slash, Paul Simon, B.B. King, Ziggy Marley and others.

Again this year I helped document an LKR fundraising event at Facebook Headquarters (See the 2012 Little Kids Rock post here). This year’s event was dedicated to the memory of Josef Desimone, the Facebook head chef who tragically lost his life this fall. I remember him so clearly from the event last year. Both years have had very elaborate and delicious food made by the Facebook chefs.

It was so moving to see kids from these programs up on stage performing with big stars. I was RIVETED when James Hetfield the leader of the band Metallica, performed with them. It was jaw-dropping, and my jaw doesn’t drop so easily… I was taken by how dedicated he was to the organization, and to the kids. Chris Isaac was there as well, among others (see surfing pic–the woman in the photo with Chris can surf while doing a headstand (!)).

This year I will have the privilege of getting to know some of the kids. I want to create a photo essay that shows their stories, and powerful effect of the work this organization does.  I’ll post more on that when the time comes.

 

Sunshine on a rainy day: Sidsel and Anders’ Central Copenhagen Wedding

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Copenhagen is called the Paris of Scandinavia – with a great cultural scene, stunning new and old architecture and a very cosmopolitan population. Sidsel and Anders chose a perfect spot in the middle of this city for their wedding ceremony: The Danish Royal Library’s garden, right between the modern waterfront and the Christiansborg Castle.

However, as luck would have it, it was raining that day. Unflustered, Sidsel turned up in her wedding dress and rain boots and plan B was put into action as the ceremony moved to the nice arched pathway between Parliament and the Royal Library. As the ceremony ended, the clouds lifted and sunshine spread over Copenhagen. There was some amazing light. We took off to the new “Black Diamond” building – the spectacular modern wing of the Royal Library, and from there we walked to their reception venue – Salon K – a special events salon, connected to the cultural center ‘Huset‘ (“The House”). Huset is home to over 1000 annual events spread across 7 diverse stages with everything from live music, theatre performances, stand up comedy, spoken word and a small cinema. This place rocks – literally – and Sidsel and Anders threw a most fantastic party, which included several Danish wedding traditions–one that involves newlywed kisses while standing on chairs, and another that involves sock cutting (there is an interesting reason given for why they cut the tips of the groom’s socks off ; ))

Thank you for letting me be part of your wedding, Sidsel and Anders. I hope to see you in Denmark next year!

Portraits in Palo Alto

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Karen and Ron are so much fun! We had a fun time playing around in the park, and at their place, and then they made me dinner! Yum. Thanks guys!

Los Altos Family Portrait Time

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These kids are fireballs! We had F U N. We played around in Shoup Park in Los Altos, and got some portraits there. Then we headed to their house for a little wall climbing. Really. Take a look : )