My cousin Aaron stood in a garden last weekend and vowed to love the very lovely Anastasia "forevermore."  

(Photo by wedding photographer Erin Eppenbaugh)

A wonderful series of parties and reunions with friends and family surrounded the couple A+A over four days and here I get to relive some of the special moments with a recap list...

The entire clan on my mother's side were gathered with four generations. Six weeks after her open heart surgery, my mother was able to fly out as planned to celebrate her nephew. From seven siblings, there are 14 cousins and 19 second cousins. We were all there - except for my Aunt Pam who sadly couldn't make it out from New York last minute due to illness. The last big event in the Markley family was three years ago at my brother Matt's wedding.

We flew into Omaha and went straight to my friend Gigi's house. Gigi and I worked at Maxwell's on the Lake waitressing for seven summers during high school and college. I was a bridesmaid in her wedding 14 years ago. We were both excited to introduce each other to our children. We bbq'd, looked at wedding photos and even cracked a 1995 Saintsbury Carneros Pinot Noir, a remnant they found in their basement from the case of wine I'd given them as a wedding gift.

Lunch of reuben sandwiches (invented in Omaha, who knew?) at the Crescent Moon Alehouse

A walk across the Missouri River (and into Iowa) on Bob the Bridge with a stop at the Lewis and Clark Landing to stamp our National Parks Passport.

An excellent and short-lived midwestern thunderstorm.

Markley Family Reunion gathering at Tom and Sandy's house and getting to meet Anastasia for the first time. Second cousins ran around in a pack in the basement while all of us first cousins and aunts and uncles chatted. We watched a slideshow of family photographs, including this one of me as the flower girl in Uncle Tom and Aunt Sandy's wedding 38 years ago.

A Cotton + Chrome creation for Georgia made by designer (and my cousin) Andrea, who also made her new sister-in-law Anastasia's wedding dress. Here. Georgia in her new threads playing "Ball!" with Uncle Pappy.

Three generations of girls: me, Georgia and my mother Susan.

Aunt Diz (short for Dolores), sister of my grandfather, Charles Markley, arrives with her daughter Colleen from Texas. Diz on left with Evelyn and my sister Mary Ellen.

Omaha Zoo with cousins.

First cousins here at the rehearsal dinner at the Blatt Rooftop and Zesto ice cream cones for dessert.

Late night hang out with cousins on the hotel bar patio

Leisurely 3 plus hour lunch on the patio of La Buvette with many bottles of rose.

Wedding Ceremony at Mt. Vernon Garden. My mom posing here, with her four children and spouses.

Reception at the Living Room with Indian Food. Aaron, the groom, is a musician and productions man, a key player in the Omaha music scene and Hear Nebraska, so he made a highly curated playlist with his friends.

My brother-in-law Andrew, a man who is 6'5" suddenly came flying across the empty dance floor to get the party started when Stevie Wonder's "Boogie On Reggae Woman"came on. He beckoned to my sister to join him and they got down. And then everyone else did.

Georgia danced and twirled and ran through people's legs on the dance floor. When she spotted the red heels my cousin Jessica had kicked off in the corner, she sat down to try them on. She partied until the wee hours.

Sunday hosted breakfast at the hotel. Then 8 of us cousins with our families descended en masse on the beautiful Joslyn Museum to stroll the gallaries, hang out on couches in the sunlit atrium beneath the Chihouly sculpture and play with the kids in the well-designed and interactive Art Works.

Lunch at the Ahmad's Persian Cuisine where my Half-Persian cousin Sasha choreographed a boisterous family-style lunch for us with the owner.

Then to top it all off, a reunion with my friend Rena I met at Spanish school in Oaxaca, Mexico. She recently got married and moved to Omaha. We had another bbq and relaxing evening talking Apollo space missions with Xavier, chasing kitties and Ted played his guitar for us with Georgia insisting "More!" after each song.

On our last morning we walked through Fontanelle Forest before going home. We flew back to Seattle on the same flight as my sister and her family, so Mary Ellen and I got to chat about all the wedding details.

Thanks to all my family and friends for hosting us for such a fantastic time in Omaha! And cheers to A+A, now gallivanting around the Almalfi Coast on their honeymoon. We wish you a long and beautiful life together!

And just a few more happy photos....

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