Monday, August 11, 2008

Research

Mr. T and I attended his business partner's wedding this Saturday. Not only was it fun, but we got to make mental notes for our own wedding! They got married in lovely Half Moon Bay, which is about 45 minutes away (more with traffic, as we discovered on Saturday), a lovely coastal town. Many of the guests spent the night in the B&B where the wedding was held, but because we are frugal and also procrastinators, we opted to drive down and back both nights.

Friday night the couple had a meet and greet in a pub. I liked the casual atmosphere. We are planning on doing something similarly relaxed for our "rehearsal dinner"--probably a pizza party with pumpkin carving. I liked the idea of opening up the rehearsal dinner to more of the wedding guests. Depending on the venue, we may think about doing that...plus, it means fewer pumpkins that I have to carve myself! ;-)

Saturday we drove down in the afternoon. I was late getting ready, as usual, and Mr. T was going to get dressed at the B&B after we got there, so I'm afraid I stressed him out. I have to remember to leave myself extra time on our wedding day. Mr. T got dressed in one of his coworker's rooms and we got ourselves out to the B&B garden and found seats in time for the ceremony. It was a little chilly outside, but not too bad, and the garden was beautiful. The bride and groom walked in together to Iron & Wine. I like the idea of walking together, but I think my dad probably wants to "give me away". It's something to think about, though.

I was pretty restrained and didn't cry too much, but as usual, I did have a coughing fit in the middle of the ceremony. I always pack cough drops for this reason. I have a contrary throat. I liked that the bride and groom wrote a poem for their friends and family. I don't know if Mr. T and I are up to poetry. Perhaps he can do some drumming and I'll do an interpretive dance to tell folks how happy we are that they're at the wedding. On second thought...no.

One thing I noticed was that although I could hear their officiant fine (he had a mic), I couldn't hear any of the bride or groom's vows, because the mic was not handed over to them. That was a bummer. Note to self: Need mic for all speakers at the ceremony.

After the ceremony we mingled and had appetizers and drinks. They weren't serving hard alcohol, but luckily the B&B had a bar, so I went and bought myself a drink...or rather, one of Mr. T's business partners bought me a drink! I would really like to make sure there's hard alcohol at our wedding, if for me alone. Some folks just don't like beer or wine. So, even if we have to go cash bar for the liquor, we've gotta do it.

The mingling was fun but perhaps a touch too long. I was pretty hungry by the time dinner came (most of the appetizers had dairy in them, so being a lactard, I didn't eat much). Note to self: provide some nondairy appetizers. Not that I expected that at someone else's wedding, but at mine, I'm gonna eat something! ;-) The other thing that happened during this time is that folks started claiming tables (there was no seating chart). I didn't notice until almost too late; luckily, we were able to score a table together with Mr. T's work crew. Dennise, you told me that a seating chart was the way to go, but I didn't quite believe you. Now, I think you may have been right all along!

The bride designed, wrote, and illustrated a cookbook for the wedding favors. I forget where she got them printed, but it was relatively inexpensive. The groom wrote an album for the bride, so that CD was the other half of the wedding favor. I really loved the favors. The cookbook in particular is so handy! And it's funny and contains blurbs about what and how they cook together. Very fun idea.

Dinner was buffet style, which is what we're planning on doing. The line did get long for a minute, but it wasn't too bad. The food was great and had different options for meats, but only one vegetarian option, and no vegan options. At our wedding, even though I don't think any of our guests will be vegan, I'm definitely going vegan for one dish. We do know more than one lactard, so I think it's important for us.

During dinner there were a couple of toasts (avec champagne), which we couldn't really hear. I think that was because we were outside...the sound just floated away. We won't have that particular issue. The same for the music after dinner--it never really got loud enough for dancing. I don't think that was their focus, though. Before the wedding I had asked the bride if there would be dancing, and she shrugged and said "Maybe!"

The bride and groom did do their own sweet first dance, and even though we couldn't hear what they were dancing to, we all cheered.

After dinner it started to get really chilly, so we were happy to go inside for cake--carrot cake! It's funny, Mr. T and I were just discussing carrot cake, b/c he loves it, but didn't think it would be a popular enough flavor, so we opted not to serve it at the engagement party. Based on how quickly that thing disappeared, I don't think he needed to worry! I think we'll probably over-order on the cupcakes to make sure everyone gets one or two...dessert is really the best part, after all.

The bride and groom were happy and also very dazed. Now that all the planning was over, they didn't know what to do with themselves. The groom told me, "I feel like there's something I should be doing, but I guess I'm done!" I thought that was interesting and that probably happens all the time at weddings. I hope that we are able to enjoy the moment without worrying about what's left to do, or what didn't go right. I in particular am a worrier. I hope I can be in the moment!

The merriment went pretty late--the ceremony started at 2 and there were still folks there at 10, when we left--but I think that was in part because folks were staying at the Bed and Breakfast. It was nice, though; folks changed into comfy clothes and settled into the bar. I hope we have a good crew who stays with us till the end! Who am I kidding, I know we will!

All in all, a very satisfying kickoff to the wedding season.

2 comments:

bilunabirotunda said...

Personally, I don't think I had any trouble being in the moment, though I did feel pretty surreal most of the time, partially b/c it was so weird to see things you've been planning for so long actually happen - and it happens very fast!

Similar to a dance or clubbing, all the girls getting ready together is an integral part of the wedding, I think, and it does take quite awhile.

Pica Maloria said...

Exactly - totally surreal BBT - the day just floated by.
I also thought it was funny you mentioned Beth, you wanted to be sure you could eat your own appetizers. I think between the socializing and the dancing I ate cake and that was it!