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20 June 2006
June 20 is Ned and Marta's wedding anniversary -- 14 years this year. It seems like only yesterday, yet it was a lifetime ago. Or perhaps two lifetimes ago.
Now that I've been doing all this VHS-DVD transfer, I decided it would be fun to put together a wedding montage to surprise them on their anniversary (though perhaps Ned isn't all that surprised, if he thought about it at all).
I hadn't watched the wedding video or looked at the wedding pictures in a very long time. I went back and checked my database and discovered that apparently I never talked about that wedding in this journal either. I'm not sure why because it was perhaps the most "feel good" wedding I've ever attended. I may be prejudiced, but this was not your normal wedding, and it proved that you can have a really special wedding without spending more than we spent on our first house to do it!
To begin with, it was held in the common area of the mobile home park where my mother (and her husband, who was still alive at the time) was living. As a resident, she got the quarters for free and it was a lovely location, on a beautiful lagoon, with a big patio area for the ceremony and a nice roomy inside area for the reception.
We decided to cater it ourselves and Marta's stepmother was in charge of coordinating the food. My mother stuffed 200 hard boiled eggs. Seems to me I made a bazillion Mexican won ton--but I might be mistaken about that. But I did make the wedding cake. The wedding theme was "clowns," so this was a 4-tiered cake decorated with clowns and with a bride and groom clown in a little gazebo at the top. Unfortunately, the photo doesn't show it, but in the frosting "lace" that covered all the outside of the cake, I snuck in titles of Lawsuit songs. Probably the only wedding cake ever in the history of the world that had "ugly butt" written on it!
At one point when I was getting it set up, the cake started to tip slightly and I worried that we were going to lose the top two tiers, so I weighed them down with my stepfather's fishing weights and covered the weights with little plastic clown balloons. Fortunately, that seemed to do the trick.
There were, I believe, 18 groomsmen (and 4 bridesmaids). Basically, they didn't want to leave any of their friends out of the wedding party, so whoever was willing to shell out money to rent a tux was automatically a groomsman. For a wedding gift, they gave everybody in the wedding party (both men and women) Converse high top tennis shoes, which all the men wore with their tuxes.
The minister, a family friend of Marta's, was very tall, so Walt and the kids built an extra tall arch to fit him, rather than renting one that would be too short.
The live music for the service itself was played by Paul's godfather on the bandura, a Ukranian stringed instrument.
When the bride and groom had their first dance, it was not to live or recorded instrumental music, it was to an a capella chorus done by all the groomsmen. I'd describe it, but you just need to watch the video. They rehearsed it all day and it was a huge hit. I loved watching Ned during the day, watching his friends rehearse this surprise for Marta, and then watching him enjoy her surprise when they performed the number.
Paul was the best man and gave a toast that was both funny and emotional and left not a dry eye in the house. (It's also quite long, so I decided to put the whole thing on a video that I will post tomorrow.)
When it was all over, we had wonderful memories of a terrific party, nobody was stuck making payments for years to come, and best of all, we got ourselves a fabulous daughter-in-law.
Happy anniversary, guys!
We love you!
PHOTO OF THE DAY