Well, due to everything going on, I've been a bit slow in posting this... actually we just passed our 3 week wedding anniversary. I have to say that as we walked... er... kind of briskly... out of the church at the end of the ceremony (thanks to Aunt Georgette for this "action-shot"!) I was the happiest and most excited I think I've been in a very long time! Everything in the wedding went wonderfully. The ceremony was great. The priest who married us (Fr. Andrej) had a very warm character and was much more concerned with maintaining the feeling of the day than the formalities of the ceremony, which really helped to make everything feel extra special, rather than nerve-wracking. We were surrounded by close friends and family, and I don't think we could have had a better wedding. Thanks to everyone who could come!
As for details...
My day started pretty early in the morning with a trip to the farmers' market to pick up the flowers. I had decided long ago that I wanted lilies, and I wanted to make the bouquets myself. This actually turned out to be pretty fun. The lilies when we picked them up were mostly closed... which is good for shelf life I suppose, but not so pretty, and we wanted pretty that day. So, we had been told to put them in a bit of warm water and they should open up. Sure enough, we put them in a bucket of warm-ish water and you could almost watch them opening! It was truely amazing! So, my best friend and maid of honour came over to have breakfast and start the process of making the bouquets and later getting ourselves ready. This is a great picture of us at the hair-dresser. Love the aluminum-foil Mel!!!
I guess everyone hopes for a nice sunny wedding day. I tried not to get my hopes up, especially knowing how tempermental Nova Scotia weather can be, and also that it would do whatever it was going to do and it was well beyond my control. Well, it rained. It rained all day. It threatened to let up for a little while... but then it started raining again. Fortunately we had taken the forecast seriously and went out and bought a big black and white golf umbrella the day before. This most certainly came in handy and actually made a pretty nice accessory for photos (example, this one below from our official photographer Jule Malet-Veale)! This lovely umbrella also made it possible to follow our original plan of walking from the church to the reception. It was much less of a mass march up the hill than we'd hoped with a sunny day in our imaginations, but we had a blast. Still riding high from the ceremony, and that "We did it!" feeling, we walked out of the church, up Spring Garden Rd (one of the main downtown streets for those who don't know Halifax), up past the Folklore center and Port of Wines, and then up the hill to the grounds of R.A. Park. We had a few people stop and honk, and offer congratulations along the way, and our photographer played papparazzi with us, which was a hoot.
Of course it was after that things turned south a bit. As we were trying to get some pictures outside (in the rain) before going in to dinner, I noticed my Dad on a cell phone. This is not a normal occurance, and he didn't look particularly happy about whatever was going on, so I knew something was up. Fortunately, my first thought that someone was seriously ill was not so, but it turned out my Dad was on the phone with the police to report that the car had been broken into while we were in the church and my backpack with my laptop, iPod, other misc item, my handbag with my bank and credit cards and my overnight back had been stolen. My first thought of "oh no, not my laptop" came with a terrible sinking realization... i hadn't backed up. I didn't exactly take the news well, and our photo-session got cut short.
So, pretty much the first thing I got to do as a married woman was call and cancel my bank and credit cards. F-u-n. All the while trying to remember when exactly I had last backed up my data and analysis, and what I had done in between. While trying to deal with being on hold, and attempt to maintain? regain? some composure, my new husband asked if I wanted my Mom. Now, don't get me wrong, I love my Mom, and normally her presence would most certainly be requested if possible in such a situation, but I just thought "why do I need my Mom? I don't want you to leave"... I suddenly realized I had my husband, and that was all I needed. Then I came out of the office where I was using the phone and I had friends all waiting to console me too. So after my Mom scurried me off to the bathroom to compose myself some more, and literally powder my nose, I was ready to put it behind me (temporarily anyway) and try to enjoy the reception.
And the reception was great! I think it was better than we could have hoped. (Minus perhaps some carefully considered musical selections that were the reason for having the laptop with us in the first place.) The food was great, everyone seemed to be having a good time. The cake... oh the cake was beautiful... and tasted amazing... I could barely believe my eyes when I saw it. :) And the U-shaped table, despite it's big-ness, created a nice feeling of everyone sitting together. We had candles on the table rather than flowers, and they gave the whole room a nice warm glow. Unfortunately this thwarts most digital photographers... probably even our pro had some trouble with the lighting conditions... but it felt very elegant yet relaxed, and I was thrilled.
Probably one of the best things we did was serve the cake. It was a great way to get to talk to everyone, and we had lots of fun doing it. I think the expressions on our faces say it all. One thing that might be good to note however: chocolate cake + white dress = no, no. Eventually we gave up and I handed around napkins not pieces of cake... unfortunately Shawn got to experience the staining power of chocolate due to some early cake serving bumbles. Sorry!
At the very end of the reception, we made another attempt to get some pictures... at this point it was getting rather difficult as everyone was pretty tired. It seems my blinking reflex becomes more of a problem the more tired I get, and I kept slouching. Drats. Anyway, our photographer was great... and I think I'll make a separate blog post about that... so I think she managed to pull a few good ones out at the end anyway. Major kudos for that!
I guess too, Janya's piece of advice for me all along was probably the best thing anyone told me about planning a wedding, and it was true: "Just think: at the end of the day you'll be married"... and it's true, that was the best part. :)