Wedding season is almost upon us and I like 90% of the world have an anniversary in June. It will be our 5 year on June 19. In some ways it feels like hardly any time has passed but when I look at the pictures and see how young all the kids look it makes me realize how important 5 years can be. When I got married I was not the raging handmade addict you see today. But we were working on a relatively conservative budget to create the sweeping vision I had for the day so there was a lot of handmade details I would love to share.
It was a two part celebration so I will break it up that way as well. We had a small ceremony with just our closest family and friends at the historical Victorian home near my hometown called The Dent House. The owners also sell high end antiques and occasionally allow special events there. My Mom knew the owners and was able to get us in and I couldn't have been happier since it was already so elegantly decorated that we needed to waste none of our budget on decorating there.
Most of the handmade elements and budget was in the huge reception we had later that evening. We had a Renaissance themed reception which was like a mini Ren Fest, which I will describe in detail tomorrow. But I added as many personal touches into the ceremony as possible.
I should say that the biggest chunk of our budget besides food was spent on our photographer. Kim the true artist from Collins Photography was absolutely the most amazing photographer that Rolla had to offer. As I was just perusing her portfolio of weddings there is a shot of Mike and his twin brother in there. We could have gotten a more traditional photographer for much less but I was so happy with her artistic and creative shots that it was well worth it. I wanted to be able to look back at my pics without thinking how fat I looked and she got shots that are so aesthetically pleasing that I don't even think about it. She did 90% of them in black and white and so any of the color shots you see were taking by someone else.
This picture shows a very nervous Mike sitting next to my now passed Nana. It was just about 20 minutes before the ceremony started. I was still upstairs getting myself together. I worked pretty closely with the florist to create a unique bouquet and hair pieces for all the girls. They were all done in a round wreath like way with lots of wheat and a few purple flowers. I told him I wanted my bouquet to have the highest fiber count he had ever arranged, with only non-scented flowers to keep my allergies at bay. I went in as soon as the flowers came in and did a sniff test to make sure there was nothing that would cause me to sneeze in the middle of my ceremony. When I was scanning pictures last night I didn't get any good ones of the flowers but I promise they were gorgeous. I got a little carried away scanning pictures from the reception since that was really my baby so there will be lots to see tomorrow.
My "wedding planner" and main source for creative input was my Uncle Jack. He is my mother's only sibling, a "bachelor" and like a second Dad to me. He once owned a flower shop years ago that burned to the ground in the 80's. I still have very fond memories of afternoons in the flower shop watching him in his true element. I think that was when he was most happy and the tragedy was that he didn't have the will to start from scratch to rebuild.
Jack also has a lovely voice and sings at funerals all the time as he now runs a funeral home. He and Mike were in charge of the music for the ceremony. Mike recorded the wedding march on his classical guitar that we used as I came down the spiral staircase with my Dad. He also recorded the Beatles song In My Life and Jack sang it live which you can see in the picture above to the left. There wasn't a dry eye in the house after the song was over.
One of my Mom's cousins is a Lutheran minister and she did the ceremony for us. It was personal and sweet just like I wanted. I had several of my closest friends do readings of poems that I had picked out. One of them was this passage from The Prophet that I think pretty well encapsulates Mike and my marriage and love:
Love one another, but make not a bond of love;
Let it rather be a moving sea between
the shores of your souls.
Fill each other's cup but drink not from one cup.
Give one another of your bread
but eat not from the same loaf.
Sing and dance together and be joyous,
but let each one of you be alone,
Even as the strings of a lute are alone
though they quiver with the same music.
Give your hearts,
but not into each other's keeping.
For only the hand of Life can contain your hearts.
And stand together yet not too near together;
For the pillars of the temple stand apart,
And the oak tree and the cypress
grow not in each other's shadow.
Kahil Gibran, The Prophet