Earlier this week, we celebrated our 7th wedding anniversary. Yes, seven years ago, we were up before the sun getting ready for our 10:30 a.m. wedding ceremony at Westminster Presbyterian Church in Lincoln, Nebraska.

We had a mid-morning wedding at Westminster Presbyterian Church in Lincoln, Nebraska. (Photo by Aaron Babcock)

We had a mid-morning wedding at Westminster Presbyterian Church in Lincoln, Nebraska. (Photo by Aaron Babcock)

We wanted a short engagement (about two months), and  there weren’t many venues available for late afternoon or evening events with such short notice. Fortunately, we’re both morning people and liked the idea of a mid-morning ceremony followed by a champagne brunch (with bacon) on the last Saturday before the Husker football season began.

Smiling all the way down the aisle! Photo by Aaron Babcock

Smiling all the way down the aisle! Photo by Aaron Babcock

It all worked out and we had a beautiful day, surrounded by family and friends.

What a joy to come out of the church and celebrate our marriage with so many family and friends.

What a joy to come out of the church and celebrate our marriage with so many family and friends.

Since then, instead of buying gifts for each other, we’ve found something each year for our anniversary that fits the traditional anniversary gift suggestions. You know the ones: paper, tin, china, silver, gold, pearls. We try to keep the cost under $100 and just to add a twist of our own, decided we’d look for something related to our love for travel.

Most years, we’ve been able to stay within our budget, the traditions, and the travel theme. You can read all about the gifts we purchased the first six years HERE. The traditional wedding anniversary gift for the seventh year is copper or wool. This was actually a pretty easy one for us. As you may know, we recently purchased a house in Pawhuska, Oklahoma, in the heart of Osage County.

Outside our new house in Pawhuska, Oklahoma.

Outside our new house in Pawhuska, Oklahoma.

One of our favorite stores in Pawhuska, Clifton’s, sells the most incredible Pendleton blankets. We knew right away that one of these wool blankets was the perfect anniversary gift and addition to our new home. Jaime at Clifton’s helped us select and order this San Miguel blanket. It cost a more than our usual $100, but we figured we’d been well below budget several of the previous years and this was worth the extra expense.

We ordered Pendleton's San Miguel blanket for our 7th anniversary.

We ordered Pendleton’s San Miguel blanket for our 7th anniversary.

We spent our anniversary together and enjoyed cooking a nice dinner at home and uncorking one of our favorite bottles of wine. The blanket will be here in a few weeks and will forever be a wonderful reminder of our seventh anniversary and our first year in Pawhuska.


How do you celebrate anniversaries? Let us know. We’d love to hear from you.

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7th anniversary gift idea

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  • What a privilege to be in @visitbentonville this weekend to celebrate the opening of @themomentary and our friend, @addie_roanhorse. Addie’s Osage ribbon work- inspired design is featured on this tower at the Momentary and it is just fabulous! 
This new space opens to the public Feb. 22 and general admission is free, thanks to the generosity of the @waltonfamilyfdn.
  • In @visitmasoncityiowa, you'll find the boyhood home of famous composer Meredith Willson. Perhaps best known for his musical, "The Music Man," Willson based the show in large part on his experiences growing up in his hometown.⁣
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Mason City has kept Willson's memory alive through an extensive museum and convention space, which we got to see on our hosted tour of the town, called The Music Man Square. A part of the experience at Music Man Square is a tour through Willson's childhood home.⁣
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Now is the perfect time to head to Mason City for a visit. Hugh Jackman is set to play Professor Harold Hill in a Broadway revival of, "The Music Man." With that show opening in 2020, all eyes will be back on Mason City.⁣
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@thehughjackman @musicmanbway
  • When the @museumofamericanspeed invited us to come for a complimentary visit, we weren't sure what to expect. ⁣
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Yes, the museum is chock-full of race cars, engines, history, and car-related memorabilia. But it also houses other collections like one of old lunch boxes.⁣
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We had so much fun standing and taking in the lunch boxes, looking and trying to find the ones we had when we were kids. Ann had "Charlie's Angels" and Steve had "Super Friends." ⁣
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If you're ever near Lincoln, Nebraska, check out the Museum of American Speed. It's a true hidden treasure in the midwest. ⁣
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What kind of lunch box did you carry to school? Any kids of the 70s and 80s who had the ones we had?
  • Sometimes you find things in your own backyard.⁣
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Just up the road from our home in Crete, Nebraska, we found the National Museum of Roller Skating. Our curiosity piqued, we stopped in and took a look around. There we found the world's largest collection of historical roller skates, costumes, and memorabilia. ⁣
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It took us back to our childhood and spending time at the roller skating rink (do kids even skate anymore?). We remembered crossing over on the turns for the first time and bending at the knees for "Downtown" by Petula Clark. So many great memories. ⁣
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Sometimes, we focus so much on getting away that we forget that we have some really interesting places close to home, as well. The next time you feel a hankering to go somewhere, maybe try going down the street. You never know what treasure you might find and what memories it evoke.
  • This was our Valentine’s Day dessert last year. Chef Kurtess Mortensen at The Pioneer Woman Mercantile created this memorable dish he called “Fat Elvis.” It was a chocolate bread pudding, served alongside banana brûlée and caramelized peanuts then topped with marshmallow cream, homemade peanut butter ice cream, and a candied bacon garnish. We are giddy with anticipation to see what he comes up with tonight! We are budgeting our calories accordingly. 😉
  • “Actually, the best gift you could have given her was a lifetime of adventures.”
– Lewis Carroll
  • It's been a long winter. I need to see flowers again! Are you with me?Let's talk about these flowers. ⁣
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We are often asked about our favorite place we've ever visited. While that question is hard to answer, we almost always mention Tallinn, Estonia, as a contender.⁣
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Estonia has an interesting history. Conquered in 1227 by Denmark, it never again enjoyed independence until  1920. That freedom was short lived, however, as the Soviet Union occupied the country in 1940. Finally, in 1991, Estonia regained its independence and has remained free ever since. The country joined NATO in 2004. ⁣
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Visiting Estonia, we could see the remnants of Soviet control. Large block buildings dominate the landscape. They are of Soviet Communist design: utilitarian in nature with no thought given to design. They look just like the buildings you've seen in movies about the Soviet Union. ⁣
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Now free, Estonians have done what they can to erase the gray days of Soviet control. The Soviet-style buildings are painted bright colors, and flowers abound in the streets. The people are warm, cheerful, friendly, and welcoming. ⁣
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Yes, Estonia is a wonderful country, and we can't wait to return.
  • Each year from late February to early April, hundreds of thousands of Sandhills Cranes migrate through Nebraska on their way north to their breeding grounds. It's considered one of the greatest spectacles in nature, so thousands of people come to experience this incredible time.⁣
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We traveled to Kearney, Nebraska, one of the best cities for crane viewing, last year. Because the best times to view the cranes is sunrise and sunset, we found ourselves with some free time during the day. It turns out that Kearney has a lot to offer in terms of things to do.⁣
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Scroll across our highlights on Instagram, and you'll find the stories highlights we made during our time there. On our blog (link in bio) you'll also find a post we wrote with ideas for 20 things to do in Kearney while you wait on the cranes. ⁣
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Put crane viewing on your bucket list. It really is one of the most amazing experiences we've ever had in nature. And don't worry about being bored between sunrise and sunset--Kearney has too much to offer.

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