Tag Archives: wedding

One Year Like No Other

In one year

We got married.

We moved to a different, much bigger city.

I had some minor culture shock.

I got a job.

We got a puppy.

I got a different job.

I quit a job so I could take the different job.

We bought a house.

We got dusty.

And then we bought some tulips for our back flower bed to commemorate a huge day, a happy day, a day full of sunshine.

So very like the day 1 year ago.

Just, not full of wind and snow and cold.

People say that your wedding day is the happiest day of your life.

They’re (so) wrong.

The happiest day of your life is your first anniversary.

And probably your second anniversary. I’ll find out about that next year.

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Waiting for April

It seems to me like the end of winter is a season of waiting.

I know, I know. Advent is the season of waiting and that was almost three months ago. And yet, come February, I find myself waiting, waiting, waiting, barely containing myself. Last year at this time, it was the wedding. There were suddenly very few plans to make. Decisions had been made, dresses had been bought, venues booked, vendors chosen. I was working my way through my last few courses, but mostly, I was simply waiting, so excited for that moment when M and I finally walked hand in hand down the aisle and out of the sanctuary as husband and wife.

And now, a year after that painful stretch of waiting, I’m back to it. It’s not really as painful as last year: there aren’t as many worries, not as much pressure on the end of the wait, on one day. And, as wonderful as the end of the wait will be, in truth, it will be nothing in comparison to last year’s finale.

But it’s still going to be awesome.

We’ve been making plans like crazy. Every night, one of says something like, “Hey, I’ve been thinking about the bathroom,” or, “Are you sure it’s a good idea to put a shower in instead of a tub?” or “Do you think we could rip down that wall someday?” Every day, our thoughts change: last week, we were set on a layout change, moving the bathroom to behind the kitchen and creating an open-concept flow. This week, we’re wondering if we’ll get a better return on our investment if we work with what we have and just make it amazing. Next week we’ll probably start planning to add a whole second floor or a huge addition out the back. We’ve got dozens of scribbled floor plans and a few well thought out and carefully scaled versions. And I’m starting to lose track of the number of trips we’ve taken to Ikea.

Waiting is important; I know that. If only it were slightly easier.

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Book Review: The Meaning of Wife

Dear Ms. Kingston,

I don’t read a lot of non-fiction. When I was a child, I consumed books about the Holocaust at a slightly alarming rate, but since those simplistic, dumbed-down, glossy books, I’ve only finished one other work of non-fiction from cover-to-cover. I’m not sure if this means I’m discovering the genre. All I know is that, every day for the past two weeks, your book grabbed my attention from the moment I sat down in my seat on the bus until the moment I had to pull the string.

What grabbed me the most and what I am most thankful to you for, is that you didn’t tell me what to think. In fact, until the end of the book, you kept me guessing about what your thesis actually is. You presented marriage in such a way that it is both good and bad, it both strengthens and weakens, benefits and destroys. You made me proud, hesitant, nervous, worried, excited, and confident about being a wife. Most importantly, you made me actively think about being a wife.

And then, after you had made me think about everything, you finally hit me with a thesis that resonates so strongly, that just seems right, that makes sense. It’s a thesis that validates, affirms, even frees my marriage, in a way. It’s a thesis that reveals a world of possibility, of hope, a world in which I can stand up for my marriage. It’s a world I always knew was there but could never define.

I wish every new wife, male or female, would read your book. And every old wife. And every unwife. And every woman contemplating become a wife. It may become my go-to shower gift. I’ll probably start sneaking it onto gift tables at weddings. Christmases and birthdays. Gifts for no reason.

Now, someone just needs to write about this topic in such a sensible, true way from a religious perspective. Anyone?

Anyway, Anne, thank you. Thank you for saying what I thought I knew but wasn’t sure how to articulate. Thank you for acknowledging marriage as complicated, for stomping on the cookie cutter. Thank you for recognizing me as me and M as M and our marriage as our marriage and no one else’s. Thank you for throwing out the models, the models of divorce, of sticking it out through years of abuse, of standing quietly in the shadow, of first-wives clubs and of trophy wives and husbands.

Most of all, thank you for believing in marriage.

A wife

There is no singular meaning of wife. That is the point. That is its meaning. To see the wife fully through a multi-faceted lens is one of the central challenges facing society in the twenty-first century.

– Anne Kingston, p. 289

 

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J(2), November 20, 2010

On Saturday, my beautiful best friend was drop-dead gorgeous.

I can’t really write a proper recap because their wedding story is not my wedding story. So, I’m not even going to bother. I will, however, share a few of the words I said to J(2) on Saturday night at the reception.

I have known you for 22 years and we’ve been friends for almost as many. Very few people can say they have had such a friendship. It has grown with us as we have changed. We used to play Barbies, or dress up in the clothes from your tickle trunk and giggled until our faces hurt. We felt like sisters. A number of times our lives have taken very different directions and a number of times, that bond formed when we were giggling girls was threatened by distance, by changing values, by new people in our lives.

But somehow, something always led us back. With you, I never feel awkward, even when we haven’t seen each other for months. We can always pick up right where we left off, interested in each other’s lives, there to provide a shoulder to cry on, memories to laugh about, a friend to share with. You are one of the first phone calls I make when something big happens: You have been one of the first to know about break ups, job offers, my engagement, our new apartment. You have been excited with me when my life went through a lot of change. And now, I am so happy to be excited with you.

I don’t have much experience on you: 6 months married does not make me an expert in any way, so I’m not going to give you any advice. But this is what I hope and pray for your marriage: I pray you love each other in every way you can. I pray you will hold dear the traditions your families have passed down to you, but at the same time discover what marriage means for yourselves. Most of all, I pray you will build your lives up around each other and around God allowing him to strengthen your relationship through unconditional love.

J, even though you have a new shoulder to lean on, know that I will always be here for you, always ready to give advice if I can give it, always ready to create some new memories. I love you both and I am so happy that you have chosen to dedicate yourselves so completely to each other.

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A Wedding Weekend

In less than 1 hour, I’ll be on the road, headed toward my best friend’s rehearsal.

Tomorrow, she’s getting married and I’ll be right there beside her to throw in my support.

I have the same hopes for her marriage that I still have for my own, 6 months in. But those probably need a post of their own to do them justice.

Congratulations J and J! I know the day will be beautiful and I can’t wait to sign my name as a witness to your vows to each other and to God!

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Because I am a blogger…

… and because I’m getting married, I’ve joined the masses and started a wedding blog.

Keeping it kind of separate means I can stress out there and then come back here and post something completely unrelated and remind myself I have a life outside of wedding planning. Also, keeping it separate means that if you don’t want to, you don’t have to know anything at all about my descent into the insanity of a wedding.

This blog will also not stream to Facebook. That means you only get to read about my wedding if you want to read about my wedding.

Enjoy!

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Bridal pressures

I went wedding dress shopping on Tuesday.

I am fortunate to have a body type that looks good in the majority of wedding dress styles. (I like to think the running I did a while back plays some role in this.) I tried on and liked enough wedding dresses that I almost started to hate wedding dresses by the end of it all.

I tried on dresses like this:

And like this:

And like this:

(Obviously, I didn’t try on any of these dresses, or any dresses that are TOO similar to this.)

Dresses was probably the very first wedding topic M and I talked about after we got engaged. We flipped through picture after picture on the Internet. I don’t think most girls do this with their fiances. I’m glad I did though. I discovered there are some styles I like that he doesn’t. Like this one:

He says dresses like this remind him of nightgowns.

Anyway. The point is, he has opinions. He says he’s only been to one wedding where he really liked the wedding dress, in fact, like a very typical man, can’t even remember most of the others.

But the problem is not that he has opinions. It’s not even that he isn’t supposed to see the dress before the day (doesn’t want to see the dress before the day, in fact) and therefore can’t give his opinion.

I think the problem is SOCIETY. It’s very easy to blame society for things isn’t it? I can’t remember how old I was when I first heard the ideology that no one can be more beautiful than a bride on her wedding day. Even an ugly bride is more beautiful than any one of her guests.

I didn’t realize how much pressure this puts on a bride until I became a bride-to-be myself. How can you guarantee that the dress you pick will draw the reaction you want from those watching you? And even more importantly, from your groom? More than anything, I want him to think I’m beautiful.

(Yes, I know he already does. And he’s told me he doesn’t REALLY care that much, that there aren’t very many dresses out there that really blow him away, mostly because he doesn’t care that much about the dress. But still, what if he thinks my dress is ridiculous, or boring and his favourite wedding dress is still his cousin’s from two years ago?)

Anyway, I found a dress. I found a couple dresses, really. The Internet says you’re supposed to burst into tears of joy when you put on YOUR wedding dress. I didn’t do that. Seriously, does anyone? There might have been a little more of a grin than with other dresses. An affirmation of favouritism when I tried it on a second time at the end of the day. But now, I’m second guessing myself. What if it actually makes me look dumpy and the pedestal at the store is just making me look taller? What if it’s too over-the-top, too modern, too odd, too much or too little crinoline, not enough coverage, too much fabric, too little bling, too much bling?

(The dress does not have all of those things. But, M reads this blog on occasion. I don’t want him knowing too much!)

And the biggest fear with almost all of the dresses I tried on on Tuesday… what if there’s too much skirt on whatever dress I pick and I end up standing at arms length to the man I’m marrying our whole wedding day?

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The dBs meet the Vs

My parents drove 4.5 hours to meet M’s parents this weekend. We had a delicious meal of M’s mom’s lasagne, and the wine my parents brought.

Aside: Why is 20 Bees going out of business?

The weekend went pretty smoothly. I was worried about awkward pauses and long, dragged out silences. There were none. Perhaps the wine had something to do with that?

I have a feeling though that I’m not a very good bride-to-be. There gets to be a point at which I just don’t want to talk about wedding stuff anymore. We hashed out guest numbers, money numbers, engagement party details, and far too many small details that felt rather premature. Sunday afternoon we were still having hour long conversations about gift registries and guests and I didn’t know how to make it stop.

I’m glad that M and I are taking a day to ourselves today, even though it’s mostly a day of me doing school work.

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Dana and Bryce, October 3, 2009

The last wedding of the season. M was in this one, so he had lots of decorating duties, which mostly meant he went golfing.

Yeah, I’m not really sure how that works either.

We got to the kind of far away location Thursday night and started working on the hall. I spent the day on Friday at the hall with the bride and her attendants as well, putting myself to good use to make up for coming so early. I was nervous about being in the way, so I just made sure I wasn’t.

Friday, they rehearsed. I played a stand-in Maid of Honour for about five minutes.

Friday night, the MC and one of the other groomsmans’ girlfriend showed up, so we checked into our (slightly odd smelling, but sparkling clean) motel room. (We think the smell was new carpet.)

Saturday, I spent way too long on my hair, rushed through my make-up and shoving some food in my mouth and ran to the wedding down the road.

I didn’t get many pictures at the reception. My camera and the battery situation is so far kind of unpleasant. Regular AAs boot it for about 20 minutes. I really need to invest in that charger.

Wasn’t M dashing that night?

The group of high school friends: The groom, his groomsman, the MC!

It’s growing!

We closed out the dance. And helped to clean up. Walked back to the motel and collapsed, tipsy and even more excited for my own.

Weddings are fun.

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One run a week…

…is all I’ve been managing to do with this new routineless routine of school. Fortunately, I have a fiance who encourages physical fitness and reminds me that I like to run, so I haven’t fallen off the track completely. I’m still contemplating the half marathon here in my city, which is run next April or May. How crazy would it be to be training and running a marathon in the same month as my wedding?

According to this show I’ve been watching, Rich Bride Poor Bride, it would be absolutely crazy. Apparently, planning my wedding is supposed to make both me and M horrible people, especially to each other. Watching the show, I’ve learned what NOT to do.

Anyway, back on topic. My run!

4.39 km

30:18 minutes

Average pace: 6.8min/km

Not such a great pace. But, it felt good, so I’m not dwelling on it. I’m going to M’s parents’ place this weekend. I’m going to bring my running clothes in case there’s time to go for a run. Sometimes just being in a different place, taking a route I’ve never taken before is all the motivation I need.

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