For the Love of Marriage by Lisa Lewis Smith

The writer's parents on their wedding day

My parents just celebrated their 51st wedding anniversary.  They have provided a good and sound model for my brothers and me.  A large part of the success of their marriage and our family closeness should be attributed to Lewisburg, and to our time at Smithover and the Greenbrier River.  Our numerous canoe trips,  picnics, and family car travels (during  which we put millions of miles under our belts) all knit us together. My parents devoted their time and energy to the meaningful things in life, and showed their children the true value of family and making memories for a lifetime.

The writer's parents, Thanksgiving 2011 in Lewisburg.


Lewisburg represents the simple life for me.  It represents not having to show anyone up and investing in the important things:  breathing fresh air, admiring sunsets with your children, soaking up starlit evenings, eating with pleasure and gratitude.  It represents committing to living life to the fullest, and to falling in love with as much as you possibly can.

Our wedding in late August of 2004 took place on this land that my dad always referred to as “sacred.”  That evening, all the things that were precious to me growing up merged together into one memorable occasion:  family, food, and music in the great outdoors.  The moon was full.  The stars were bright. Cousins Fred, Lew, and Will picked away at some of my favorite tunes.  My childhood was over, but my values for life were set.

Lewisburg and Smithover became a special place for me early on.

The magnificent fields, woods, and waters were the vital playgrounds of my youth.

It is a place that continues to transform me, continues to teach peace and harmony, and continues to bring calmness during restless times.

It is my sanctuary.

Through this exceptional place, I have learned how to take great pleasure in the fundamentals of a meaningful life.

I am forever grateful.

The writer and her husband on their wedding day in Lewisburg, West Virginia

7 thoughts on “For the Love of Marriage by Lisa Lewis Smith

  1. I remember Lisa’s wedding very well. She doesn’t mention the old stone church (with no air conditioning) where it took place. We all had hand fans with photographs of Lisa and her groom when they were children. Rolling out to the reception was like entering Twelve Oaks from that wonderful pre-war party scene from Gone With the Wind! Very special.

  2. Thank you neighbor Julian….he is a big believer in the “honor system” at his beloved alma mater W&L. He always encouraged us to “tell the truth”. Your Mae Ellen is a lovely person!

  3. Special thanks to my friend and editor Elizabeth for the opportunity and encouragement to get this done.  It has been a true gift for my folks to read about their much loved second home from the viewpoint and imagination of their youngest child.
    Thanks also to my immediate and extended family for providing the most colorful fodder for easy storytelling.  I am (as Maw always said) “proud and grateful” for each of you!

    • Lisa, altho 8 years after your writing, I am loving reading your Essays! The Luther family were Botts and Eylise’ back yard neighbors in Bluefield. Stuart was my baby sitter and I pined to be like her. I attended your parents wedding at age 14…. the picture found on the internet was what drew me to your writing.
      If you receive this e-mail, please contact me! I would love to know how Stuart is and if she would like to chat with me.

  4. Pingback: For the Love of Marriage by Lisa Lewis Smith | Esse Diem |

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