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So lately I've felt a bit like I'm spinning plates - a thousand different things to do, finish, plan, execute and release - all held in a very delicate balance. My daddyo noticed that the stress was showing through - and sent me a copy of the speech he spoke at our Handfasting back in September....all I can say is I cried just as hard reading it as I did when he spoke those words to me that day.

For all who know me - and would like to know me better...and for all who know him (or do not) and would like to remember why he is such a special guy...I invite you to read ON....Here's to loving one another - unconditionally.


Well.... I never thought this day was going to come.

And I’m not referring to the year long engagement, tons

of pre-wedding parties, plus the incredible planning and detail of this event

- I mean Steff getting married.

You see, both my daughters were quite clear. No getting

married and no babies, Dad. It was their mantra.

Steff was very set on this. And frankly, once she

makes her mind up about something it’s pretty

much impossible to get her to change it.

Am I right, Lee?

She’s always been this way. She figures out what she

wants and does it. It’s quite amazing, actually. And don’t

ever try and stop her. Seriously. It’s a very bad plan.

Am I right, Bridesmaids?

How long has she been this way? Since birth.

The two’s were particularly terrible.

My first car, an ancient Corolla had no

air conditioning and in the stifling heat of August

Steff would be sitting in the car seat in the back. And she’d insist on the windows being rolled up. Why? To prove her

power. So I’d be dying of the heat and notice

her asleep in the back and gently roll the driver’s side

down just a crack. And she’d open one eye

and say, “All the way up, Dad! Roll them all the way up”. And I’d have to seal us back up. Resistance was futile. Even at that age.

Her sister Sam, she of the lovely hairstyle, is

4 years older than Steff. And her mother and I

thought there might be too much age difference

for them to play together. But that didn’t happen.

They played together brilliantly. Combing their

little ponies and removing their Barbie’s heads

so happily. Why? Because if Sam didn’t want

to play, Steff talked her into it. And talked and

talked. It’s very hard to change your sister’s

mind, isn’t it, Sam?

Naturally, with a daughter this determined we

went through the usual trappings and phases

of rebellion. The Goth period, comes to mind.

Died black, permed hair, chopped here... black

lipstick, black fingernails and black layered

lace. The little old Greek ladies of East York

loved that look - she was one of them!

Then there was the “under-cut”, a punk hairstyle

that was long on top and completely shaved

to the scalp underneath. And who shaved the

underneath part? Me. I’d shave a little bit and cringe.

And Steff would urge, more, Dad!! More!

As a result she had the most dramatic undercut

in the history of Cosburn Middle School.

Tattoos? No tattoo’s we said. Then one night

one of her school friends called at 2 in the morning.

Was it you, Nadia?

Anyway. Steff’s friend says, “Mrs. Conover, Steff

got a tattoo and she’s afraid to tell you but she

thinks it’s infected”. A quick examination proved this was true. Well, a little vitamin E cream

and some Mother’s love and... now she has

about a dozen more very striking tattoos.

But it’s not about the ink. It’s really about

Stephanie knowing her own mind, and going

out and doing things. This has lead her to all kinds

of accomplishments in life.

Her business cards say: Singer, Model, Actress.

But they should also include Event Planner, Dancer, Gourmet Chef, Advice Consultant, Painter, Carpenter, Designer, Friend, Dog Trainer, Horse Trainer and Person who’s impossible to get off the phone - I know about that part, believe me.

I’m tremendously proud of her. And I love her to bits.

And I know your mother would say to you today, Steff you look gorgeous and I love you.

Just continue being you and you’ll be happy and

successful in whatever you want from life.

Her mother really did do a great job of raising her.

OK, now I’m a wreck.

Back to the speech.

What changed Steff’s mind about marriage?

Well, he’s about 5 foot 11, dark and handsome

and just about the very sweetest guy you could

ever meet. Lee, you are amazing. Lee puts up

with a lot. And he does it with a smile.

It takes a special guy to change my daughter’s

mind. The rest of us have tried. And failed miserably.

So even though you’ve been a member of the

family for years now, I’d like to officially welcome

you and say I couldn’t be happier with Steff’s


Now lets raise our glasses to the happy couple.

To Steff and Lee. I love you.

Here’s to an awesome future.



With many years as an experienced model and as last reigning Miss Canada Plus, Ivory's got some killer imagery associated with her. Check it out here.

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