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1: "One life on this earth is all that we get, whether it is enough or not enough, and the obvious conclusion would seem to be that at the very least we are fools if we do not live it as fully and bravely and beautifully as we can." [Frederick Buechner]

2: To Heather, who never fails to demonstrate sophistication, refinement, and elegance in all aspects of everyday life. This book is a collection of photos and letters selected and written by your lovely and loyal bridesmaids. With the culinary skills of Ina Garten, the style of Heidi Klum, and the humor of Tina Fey, running the Mentessana household will be a breeze. -npm

3: Sarah. Natalie. Jessica. Meredith. Heather. Terrell. Christine. Brittney

4: "Life is the sum of your choices." [Albert Camus]

5: "Truth, and goodness, and beauty are but different faces of the same all." [Ralph Waldo Emerson]

6: Christine | "No matter how old we get, I'll never forget the time I gave you my orange soda.."

7: cWe met when we were in pre-k at TCA and we've been friends ever since! I still remember when you first called telling me you met Carl! I am so excited to get to be a part of your wedding and to see the marvelous blessing God will bring you both! I can't believe it's been... what? 18 years since we met?! But no matter how old we get, I'll never forget about the time I gave you my orange soda! We've grown up together and through me moving to the middle of NOWHERE, going to Pine Cove, stealing you from TCA to go to a "real" high school football game, going to the lake some more, graduations, and getting to finally fill out the clothes we once played dress up in, one thing always remains—our friendship! | You and your family mean the world and that will never change! God has truly blessed me with your presence in all of my memories and I cannot tell you how grateful I am for our friendship throughout the years. I pray that we are never more than a phone call away from each other and that we will be able to continue to share our lives as great friends. God knew exactly what he was doing when He sent you to pull me out from behind my mom's leg at TCA! | You have always made beautiful and creative things for me and I cherish every single one! I hope you can keep this book on your coffee table and steal a glance at it when you need an encouraging word! It has been amazing to watch you grow into the beautiful woman and friend that you are today! I love you Heather!!! You're the best! | "You are like my soul, a butterfly of dream." [Pablo Neruda]

8: Jessica | "It is making someone comfortable in any situation with warmth and kindness, and you have the ability to do that with a simple smile."

9: What a wonderful friend you have been to me since I met you our freshman year. You possess many character qualities that I admire. One of these traits is your sincerity. The definition of sincerity is "the quality of being sincere: honest of mind," and my favorite part is "marked by genuineness." That defines you so perfectly—you have a strong will and your integrity shows through you hard work and dedication to everything that you do. You are talented in many ways and have true style and grace. The ability to be sincere is also a selfless ability. You have the ability to see and encourage qualities in other people and I know that this trait will be manifested as you start a new chapter in your life as you become a wife and later on, a mother. One of my favorite passages of scripture is Romans 12:9-13: 'love must be sincere. Hate is what is evil; cling to what is good. Be devoted to one another in love. Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord. Be joyful in | hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. Share with the Lord's people who are in need. Practice hospitality." The last part especially reminds me of you. I admire you for this talent; practicing good hospitality is not an easy task! It is not just he ability to make someone feel welcome in your home, it goes beyond that—it is making someone comfortable in any situation with warmth and kindness, and you have the ability to do this with a simple smile! thank you for your loyal friendship—I am so glad we share this and I am confident that true friendship lasts forever! What a blessing for you and Carl to have a true, sincere love.

10: Rita | "I am thrilled to have another girl around at family functions—especially one as sweet as you!"

11: Ever since December 30, 1987, Carl Michael has been the little brother I never had... Even when we were kids, I was overprotective of my little Carl Michael... When I first heard of his new college girlfriend, Heather, I took comfort in knowing you were someone very special.; the excitement in his voice and the smile on his face when talking about you showed a genuine happiness I had never seen before.. I am thrilled to have another girl around at family functions—especially one as sweet as you! I look forward to having you around more and growing closer as the years pass. Thank you for the honor in sharing this special day with you and Carl! On behalf of the Mentesana family, I want to welcome you with open arms and loving hearts! We will always be here for you and are excited to have such a wonderful addition to our family. Your wedding is one of the special occasions we will always treasure.

12: Meredith | "I watched you carry yourself from day to day with a smile on your face and always a joyful heart."

13: Even though our friendship started only two years ago, I feel as if we've known each other forever. I remember when Jess told me that you might be a possible roommate for us, and how wonderful and fun you were. Up until then, my past roommates had been... well, not so great! But I knew everything was about to change and Jess's words turned out to be so true! Spending my last year at 228 was definitely a blessing—I only wish the four of us had found each other sooner! Living with roommates means seeing everyone's true colors—the good, the bad, the happy, and the sad. But I say with complete honesty that day to day, I watched you carry yourself with a smile on your face and a joyful heart. 228 was filled with four very different and unique girls, but the best part was that those four distinct personalities meshed so well together because of our core values and beliefs. You always respected and looked out for all of us, and you were a great example of consistency in all areas of life—whether it was study habits, your even-temperedness, or your disciplined lifestlye. Your relationship with Carl was one of the best examples you lived out in front of us. I will always appreciate the respect you two have for each other; that is a great foundation for your marriage. | lUnderstanding and learning about people takes time, and it also requires a learning curve (through the honeymoon period) to learn to live well together. We who were not as well-versed in culinary tasks had to learn which tools to use for which task. I value my instruction in the art of cakeball construction, and no matter how frustrating it was to build that cakeball pyramid (KAO/SAE float), it's still a fun memory. We who were more prone to antics in the kitchen worked diligently to create entertainment for you, with things like rockband till the wii hours of the morning, gummie-bear throwing contests, and marshmallows stuck on the ceiling. Thanks for toletating our methods of filling vacant hours to make silly memories. It's great to become good firends with people who are different from us to help us grow. I'm grateful to have started a fiendship two years ago that has helped me gain and grow positively in my life. I look forward to enjoying this friendship for many years and am excited for you to start this new stage on your life. | "Within you there is a stillness and sanctuary to which you can retreat at any time and be yourself." [Hermann Hesse]

14: "The ornament of a house is the friends who frequent it." [Ralph Waldo Emerson]

15: "To get the full value of joy, you must have someone to divide it with." [Mark Twain]

16: Terrell | "You and I developed not only a close friendship, but also a favorite coffee-time topic—marriage to the men of our dreams!"

17: When I think of our relationship, it takes me back to my first days of meeting Josh. We were about to walk into his 21st birthday party in Waco, and of all his family and friends I was about to meet, I remember being most anxious about you! You had known Josh since his freshman year at Baylor; you were there through past relationships, break-ups, and hitting rock-bottom. You knew all about him—I only knew that our birthdays were six days apart. I'm sure it also helped that you were dating his roommate of three years—Carl. As my relationship with Josh became more serious, so did the double-dating duo of Carl & Heather and Josh & Terrell. Through these past years of spending time together, you and I developed not only a close friendship, but also a favorite coffee-time topic—marriage to the men of our dreams! The memory I treasure above the rest took place on a cold night in Salado. You had known for awhile that Josh was preparing to pop the question on December 12, 2009, and who else but Heather and Carl would be present during one of the most memorable nights of our lives—our engagement! It was so special for us that you were both able to share in our special night. After all the talks, planning, and waiting, I can't believe you're about to become Mrs.Carl Mentesana. I am so honored to be able to share this special time in your lives, just as Josh and I were so blessed to have you and Carl be a part of ours. I love you so much and will always be thankful that our paths crossed—all thanks to our amazing men. | "The most beautiful view is the one I share with you." [R. Gerard]

18: Brittney | "One thing that always reminds me of you is dark chocolate & diet coke... without you, I never would have developed this lovely addiction!"

19: Beginning in kindergarten at TCA in our set-unifrom wardrobe for the next 18 years, to church at Parkways Hills, and then to Baylor and both pledging the same sorority, I guess you could say that Heather and I have basically grown up together. Some of the most memorable experiences have to have been when we liked the same boy (Davenport), and learned the valuable lesson that church boys/public school boys aren't always the best choice. Then our lives changed into college parties, cute frat guys, and Heather finally meeting "the man of her dreams." Some of my favorite memories with Heather took place at our weekend "parties" at the Mullis's, hanging out with our church group. The most memorable of those is the D-Now weekend when I had a slight mishap with the shower door shattering on me. Even though it may have been a scary experience at the time, now it's funny thinking back and remembering how horrified Heather was when she ran to my rescue.... needless to say, it was a memorable day. Heather and I learned the hard way about potluck roommates at Baylor our freshman year. Of course we were both so excited about meeting new people and hoping to make new friends after going to the same school for 12 years prior, but soon after arriving to our Collins dorm rooms, we both realized our bad decision. I still remember sitting in Heather's room one afternoon, thinking her weird little roommate (who never left) was gone and then suddenly noticing a tiny bump move in the opposite bed ans out popped her roommate! I think it made the roommate mad when we screamed in terror as we finally saw her emerge from the bed, because she immediately left and didn't return for a few days. Freshman year was definitely unforgettable in many ways. From the awkward years in elementary school, to finally growing up and leaving our 12 year-long bubble at TCA, I could go on forever with plenty of stories to tell! I'm so excited for you and Carl to start your married life and look forward to the many memories ahead! PS. One thing that always reminds me of you is dark chocolate and diet coke. It was your favorite, and without you, I never would have developed this lovely addiction!

20: Sarah | "I saw the spark right from the beginning." | "Ah, life grows lovely where you are." [Mathilde Blind]

21: I remember back when Heather and Carl just started "hanging out." I had gone on a double-date putt-putting with the two of them and my boyfriend at the time. Looking back on it now, I remember watching the interaction between them that night and knowing that it was something so much more. | I remember asking Heather later on what she thought of Carl, and her emphasizing they were "just friends," but I knew otherwise-I think everyone did. And what do you now, now they're getting married! I am so fortunate to have a friend like Heather in my life. The best way to describe her is to say she is a "class act." Heather, always one of the most fashionable girls in our sorority, is a true representation of what a refined woman should be.I wish her and Carl so much happiness in their future. I saw the spark right from the beginning. They could not be a better match for each other.

22: Natalie | "I knew things would be fine and dandy when you greeted me in red gngham shorts, a white oxford, and topsiders. So east coast. "

23: Even though we moved in last year not knowing much about each other, I knew things would be just fine and dandy as soon as you greeted me in red gingham shorts, a white oxford, and topsiders. So east coast. YOu could've sailed straight from Martha's Vineyard for all I knew. There was rarely a day when you weren't flawlessly put together as you headed to the business school each morning—coffee in hand—which would would only expect from such a fervent fan of Thursday night Project Runways. There's no question about the fact that you're a very naturally caring person, but that quality became immensely apparent when I was a little less than emotionally stable during our last semester. No matter how busy you were with your workload, you always made time to ask how I was doing and give me some encouraging words. I'll always, always remember the time I came back from a rough afternoon and there on | the kitchen counter waiting for me was vase of flowers from you. It was such a kind and genuine act and provided the smile I needed that day. I'm so glad I met you and Carl and was able to witness the wonderful relationship the two of you have... I know your marriage has an incredibly bright future, and I'm looking forward to visiting the new Mentesana household whenever I'm in Texas!

24: "Precious jewel, you glow, you shine, reflecting all the good things in the world." [Maya Angelou] | "Duty makes us do things well, but love makes us do them beautifully." [Phillips Brooks]

25: "What do we live for if not to make life less difficult for each other?" {George Eliot]

26: "Within your heart keep one still, secret spot where dreams may go, and, sheltered so, may thrive and grow where doubt and fear are not. Oh, keep a place apart, within your heart, for little dreams to go." [Louise Driscoll]

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  • By: nat m.
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  • Title: Blank Canvas
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