Thursday, September 1, 2011

Memories of the Big Day

Can you believe it's almost three months since the wedding?  Wow.  Tempus fugit!

We have the wedding pictures now, and I have a few to put up here.  (If you're friends with me on Facebook, you can see the others.)  When we sit and look at the pictures, we remember all the best parts of that day.  And it's sweet.

In the long run, there are things I would have done differently.  Most of them are little decisions, little things I tried to foresee.  But the majority of the choices we made were good ones, and in the end, it was a wonderful, blessed day. 

One of the most surprising things I learned came from my other children.  I thought that we kept wedding planning pretty low-key.  We didn't obsess over anything; no one was throwing tantrums.  But to the other kids, apparently it felt as though the wedding took over our lives for a period of time. One of my daughters said that when she gets married, she only wants to take one month to plan her wedding. 

And I do understand.  No matter how careful you are to avoid wedding-mania, it tends to take on a life of its own.  I don't know whether it's because a wedding marks a major life event or that it raises huge expectations. . .but it is easy to fall into the trap of trying to make it all perfect.

After all, if the bride and groom end the day married, everything is perfect.

Friday, July 22, 2011

When It's Over

I have been meaning to write a wrap up for this blog for the past month.  Devyn and Greg celebrated their one month anniversary this past Monday, and I think it's taken me this long to process it all.

The day was absolutely beautiful.  The sun shone, the church was decorated perfectly. . .the bride was breathtaking. (This is not the best picture below, but we're still waiting for the professional ones!!

Were there glitches?  Of course there were.  I was waiting for what didn't go right, and in the end, it wasn't anything big, just a ring that didn't make it to the church right on time.  But it got there, and the ceremony was just perfect.  The most wonderful thing to me was watching Devyn and Greg's faces as they recited their vows and made those eternal promises.

The reception was also lovely.  It was a celebration of love and family and how all those things make life make sense.

I'll write more detailed posts soon.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

With A Little Help from Our Friends

Planning a wedding, even a small or low-key affair, is not for the faint of heart.  Implementing those plans shouldn't be a solo gig.

That's why wedding planners and consultants are so popular.  How nice to make the choices and know that someone else is in charge of making them happen!

But what's even better is having wonderful friends who help to make things run smoothly.

We don't have a whole lot of extended family coming to the wedding. My mom isn't around to advise me or help me on the wedding day.  But we are so blessed to have amazing friends who are giving of their time, talents and energy to make the wedding possible.

We couldn't have accomplished half of what we have without the advice, encouragement and ideas of these beloved women who haven't hesitated to pitch in, to commit to important jobs on the day itself and/or to keeping me sane by listening to me and allowing me to bounce ideas off them. 

I am so grateful to ALL of you--you know who you are!!!

A few years ago I wrote blog post called Those Who Choose.  I'm going to reprint it below because it is just as if not more applicable today. 

     In the past few years, I have learned so many lessons. . .literally hard-learned ones!  And don’t get me wrong, I am grateful for them, even if I didn’t know at the time I would be.

    One of the hardest lessons has been learning about those who choose.  It is sweet, and it is painful.

    When my dad first got sick, back when he was first diagnosed with multiple myeloma, we had all sorts of friends and family rally around us.  There were meals delivered, cards sent, offers of help.  And we were grateful and appreciative.  And then. . .life went on.  My dad came home from the hospital, and all of our lives fell into what became the normal pattern.  

    Fast forward five years:  my dad started needing hospitalization more and more frequently, until finally, in May, he went into the hospital and never came home.  It was a long six weeks of trips to and from the hospital, followed by the blur of grief.  When my mother was diagnosed with acute lymphatic leukemia two months later, it seemed more than we could bear.

    Apparently, it WAS more than some people could bear.  We realized as the months went on that we heard from fewer and fewer people.

    But that is not who I want to talk about.  I want to talk about those who choose.  Because those who chose to hang on with us, those who chose to call each week, those who listened when we cried or whined. . .those are the people whom I will always treasure as my nearest and dearest.  Turns out blood isn’t thicker than water, but love is stronger than obligation.

    Those who choose could have stopped calling or writing after my mom died.  They could have decided that since we moved south, or since it was really my parents with whom they were friends, or since we really didn’t “need” them anymore, they could back away.

    But they didn’t.  They called.  They wrote.  They listened.  They advised.  They visited!  And most of all, they loved.  They chose to love, even when it was painful or less than convenient.  

    I want to be one who chooses.  Don’t you?

T Minus SIX DAYS!!

I have been so remiss about updating my blogs. . hmm, I wonder why?  Could it be that the month before a wedding is really as crazy as everyone has warned me?

Well, yes and no.  The truth is that we have been running around and doing wedding related stuff many days, but we've also been having fun!  The month of May and early June meant that Devyn was finished school but not yet working full-time during the weekdays yet.  So we took advantage of that time to go to the beach, to Disney World, take day trips and just generally have fun.

It's kept us sane, I think.  We might talk flowers and music as we drive, but we're still doing something that is not necessarily related to the big day.

So where do we stand at this point, less than a week before the wedding?

We're actually doing really well.  Everything that needs to fall into place has, and if it hasn't, we've decided it's not that important and we've dropped it.  There is incredible freedom in remembering that no one element is going to make or break that day.

Someone said to me a few weeks ago, "I hope that day is absolutely perfect."  And it struck me that this is a completely unreasonable wish.  It's not going to be perfect in the sense that everything will go precisely as we've planned.  What will make it perfect is a sense of humor and reasonable expectations.

So that's what we're aiming for at this point.  We're looking forward to a day celebrating love, commitment and family. 

In the nitty gritty details, the dresses are all ready, the accessories are set, the parties are planned and the flowers are ordered.  We're doing fun stuff like labeling water bottles (yes, really) and setting up a wedding gift display (old school!). 

Stay tuned--I'll try to update all week, even if briefly, and keep you posted on all the fun!  If you're getting ready to head to Orlando, we can't wait to see you.  Be safe and get ready for a good time.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Sleepless Nights!

I kinda-sorta remember my own bridal days.  It was 24 years ago, so it might be a little hazy, but I really don't recall losing any sleep over the whole event.  I think I probably slept the sleep of the young and clueless, happily expecting that it would all magically just work out.  (It did, but I am thinking it might not have been so magically!!)

I wish I could ask my mother whether she slept like a baby in the month leading up to my wedding.  From my present experience, I'm thinking. . .maybe not.

For instance, it's a little after 7 AM.  I've been up since. . .oh, four?  I lay in bed for about an hour, tossing and determined to go BACK TO SLEEP. . .I need more than four hours a night, right? But in the words of the advertisement, I couldn't turn off my restless mind.  I kept thinking of something else that I needed to address, some other task, some other errand. . .

Finally, I came out here to the sofa with my book and computer.  I figure if sleep isn't coming, I'm not going to chase it.  Instead I've been on the rose site, getting ready to order some flowers. . .answering email. . .looking for a Michael's location that I haven't hit yet. . .

I'm not nervous about the wedding, nor do I think that the day will be ruined if I forget one detail.  But it's impossible NOT to worry a little about some of the big things we've still got to tackle--even if we have a plan and supplies, I'm getting antsy about getting it all done.

But it will happen.  I'm blessed with lots of help and creative minds and willing hands.  We'll bring it together!

So. . YAWN. . .on that note. . .wake me up before noon. . .

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Responses! We've got responses!

Planning a wedding is kind of a curious thing.  You basically spend a year (or more!) deciding on everything from the biggest events to the tiniest details of one single day.  And it's usually a few people making those plans for a whole group!

The larger group doesn't get involved until the fateful day upon which you send out the invitations.  Now, suddenly, all those very abstract plans are dependent on people on the guest list.

Since we sent out the invitations on Monday, we knew that pretty soon we'd begin receiving those sweet little response cards that let us know who will be attending the wedding.  And today was that day!  How exciting it was to see those first two cards in the mailbox!!

Each envelope is like a little mystery solved:  who will be joining us on the big day?  While we have a fairly good idea of who to expect, we know there could be some surprises.  After all, most of our guests are coming from out of town, and it's impossible to predict everyone's plans with accuracy.

We do know one thing:  not everyone who is invited will be able to join us.  While that makes us sad, we understand.  We will miss everyone who isn't with us, but we know you'll be with us in spirit.

And if you are coming to the wedding. . .we can't wait to see you!

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Moving Right Along

One of the drawbacks of the wedding coming along so quickly is that I don't have a lot of time to WRITE about what's going on.  But rest assured that we are still crossing things off the wedding white board on an almost daily basis.

Our biggest list accomplishment happened on Monday:  THE WEDDING INVITATIONS ARE MAILED!!  When Dev dropped those envelopes--stuffed, stamped and sealed--into the mailbox, it was with a sense of accomplishment and anticipation.  Now comes the fun part of waiting for the response cards.  I remember those days from my own wedding. . .

We're filling up our May calendar with appointments and meetings, getting everything ready for the big day. 

Keep watching the blog for more regular updates!