About two months before the wedding (a week after the deadline to send invites) my planner sat me down and said we might need to think about rescheduling. We rented the art museum and they had restrictions on the amount of people allowed in the rooms. We had plans for a family, and we knew that rescheduling would interfere with what we wanted to do with our lives. I lowered our guest count, we supplied hand sanitizer and masks. All the staff working wore masks and we encouraged a 6-foot distance.
I spent countless hours on the invitations. I sent out 100 invitations with a wax seal stamped one by one – it took days. I only had one stamp and it had to be put on ice after every press. I gave them to Jason to mail. Unbeknownst to me, he left that box in his car in the middle of June. So, what happened to my wax seals? Yeah, they melted. I remember standing in our kitchen laughing but repeating, “This isn’t funny. This can’t be funny.” All 100 invites went out messy and destroyed. But I had to laugh so I didn’t cry.
Before our first look we were both so nervous. Jason was crying before I even made it out there to him. As soon as I saw him, I was filled with the same emotion as the first time I ever laid eyes on him: an instant calm and excitement for our future. He gave me something blue which was a sapphire stone surrounded by diamonds set on a gold band to match my engagement ring.
Our ceremony was private on one of the balconies. My mom officiated the wedding using the same bible verses she taught me as a girl when I was first learning to love. She spoke the most beautiful words that my dad undoubtedly helped her craft.
The bible used in our ceremony was my great-grandmother’s. She passed when I was younger, but she has lived on through recipes, magnets, and many humorous stories. Her bible is filled with pressed flowers, baby photos, and newspaper clippings with recipes written on the back. That morning I read from it my favorite verse. Corinthians 13:13 – “And now these three remain faith, hope, and love, but the greatest of these is love.”
After we were pronounced husband and wife, we enjoyed a private dinner with the whole family. As we took pictures, the guests enjoyed cocktails and art viewing. Once we were announced the party really started. We had craps and roulette tables and rented club-like lounging so people could sit and have a photo op. We planned the food to be what you crave after a late-night out: a hot sauce fountain with wings, onion rings, mini tacos, donuts, a popcorn bar, mini hamburgers and fried mac and cheese balls.
A special gift I received came from my mom. Growing up we had family dinners every night – with no phones, no TV, nothing but family and food. A special family dish we had was beef tips and “daddy noodles” (homemade by my dad.) This meal was served in a big red Dutch oven and there were never any leftovers. My mom gifted me my own red Dutch oven along with the tools to make noodles. I know it seems silly for cooking utensils to mean so much to me, but those family dinners were my everything while growing up. We never missed family dinner. Now I can cook the same meal with the same tools and love for my little family. I pray they enjoy the time spent around that Dutch oven as much as I did.
At press time, the couple is expecting their first child.