Jackie Ayres Wedding PictureWrigley Field Jackie Ayres

Since we are coming up on Valentine's Day, and the feeling of love is in the air, it made me reflect upon my own "love story".  It began 25 years ago ironically on Valentine's Day. Our first date, or "hanging out" at a Dayton Bomber's hockey game. It was our senior year in high school and I was already committed to going to University of Cincinnati for Fashion Design. Jason had already enlisted in the Army and was scheduled to leave in August that year. I thought we can date but we both already had our future plans set......so whatever, right? 

Wrong...We quickly got engaged at 18, and then got married when we were 19.  Yikes! Back then we thought we knew what we were doing. Now I can look back and think, wow, that was pretty ballsy! I also think wow, I don't know how our parents didn't have heart attacks when we told them we were getting married and planned a wedding in 3 weeks. We moved to Fort Knox where Jason was stationed after spending a year in Korea. The 4 years he was in the Army were difficult. He was only home stateside 18 months of his 4 year enlistment. Back then we didn't have the luxury of email and cell phones. When he was deployed we spoke once every week if we were lucky, and wrote letters every day.  I am not going to lie, these years were difficult. Newly married, being thrown into an "adult" world of the Army, Jason being gone so much.....rough.

So here we are now, 25 years after the first date with a 10 year old son and 2 boxer "sons". I could fill this blog post with many stories, good and bad, about what has lead up to this point. However, I will stick to the highlights. I am one lucky lady, I am blessed with a husband supports me no matter what, no matter how crazy the idea is. He is the reason I get to pursue my passion of hand-dying and creating beautiful pieces. He tolerates the fact I have turned the bottom level of our house into a sewing room, photography studio, laundry facility, and storage site for my business! He is a fantastic dad to our boys. He is one of the best people I know, honest, trustworthy, loyal, dependable, and funny (although this the only time I will admit that lol).

25 years later, I can now see what a big risk we took getting married at such a young age. We didn't live your typical "college" years that most people that age do....We had to grow up fast. We didn't know what the heck we were doing.  But one thing is certain, I would do it all again. In a heartbeat. If you don't take big risks, you don't get big returns. I won the lottery.

Happy Valentine's Day,

P.S- Do you have a favorite Valentine's Day memory? We would love to hear- share it in the comments! 

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