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LeeAnn impressed us with her love story and desire to travel to Ireland.  Please read her entry below:

  • Nine years ago my husband and I were both in the US military.  We fell in love and decided we were going to get married.  Ireland was of course our first choice!  We both feel such strong connections to your country and my husband’s ancestors actually migrated from there to the United States (Murphy)!  We had no idea how we would afford it, but we were determined.  Neither of us were making very much money so we did our best to save up!  Then, one day we were told that I had received orders and that we would be split up.  I was devastated!  Because we were planning to get married anyway, we knew this was our only option to be able to stay together.  Ireland would have to wait….

    We started working on plans to make the wedding work.  Our second blow came when we found out that my husband was being deployed on very short notice.  Once again, the plans for my wedding had been ruined.  I would not have my romantic ceremony in Ireland and now I would not even have time for a romantic ceremony.  So, my husband and I were forced to get married at the local courthouse with none of our family or friends in attendance.

    About a month after my husband deployed I received a package in the mail from him.  It was the Claddagh ring that I am wearing in the attached picture.  While on his way to Saudi Arabia he was laid over in an airport in Ireland.  He bought me this ring and sent me a note that said, “I love you.  Thank you for agreeing to spend the rest of your life with me.  I cannot tell you how badly I wanted to share our wedding ceremony with you in Ireland.  I am so sorry I could not make that happen.  This ring is the closest to a piece of Ireland that I am able to give you right now.  Please wear it until I return as a symbol of my love for you.”  It instantly became my wedding band and I have not taken it off since.

    Now, years later, still happily married and two kids later, we are again trying to save for a trip to Ireland.  We have high hopes of renewing our vows for our 10 year anniversary in Ireland as we would have done for our wedding ceremony if we had been able to but financially are still trying to figure out how to make it work…

    The vacation package that I am most interested in is the Hidden Ireland vacation package. I chose this package because of the simple romance that the package includes.  Towns barely touched by tourism and so many opportunities to lose ourselves in each other; a perfect reminder of the love and youth we had when we first fell in love and got married.  Also, there are so many naturally beautiful locations that we could hold a small renewal of vows ceremony at.  No outside cares or responsibilities, just us.  This would allow us the opportunity to regain the original wedding ceremony we lost nearly 10 years ago.

    Thank you so much for this opportunity to fulfill a nearly 10 year dream!  I look forward to the announcement on St. Patrick’s Day and hope that is the day that I can start planning my wedding!

    Thank you again!

    LeeAnn Murphy

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