I guess I should write down some impressions about the wedding before I forget.
I see I haven’t blogged since sometime in July. Probably since around the time Theresa got here… funny that!
I guess that’s a good enough place to start:
She got here July 13, a full month before the wedding. Having my sister here to help me prepare was awesome. Of course, I’m sure she drove Dom a little crazy, especially with all the odd dietary stuff. But he was a great sport and I think generally they got along quite well.
We didn’t really do any touristy stuff. Just hanging out. Some days she’d get up and go to mass with me. More often she’d sleep in later. Most days we ran a wedding-related errand.
Because we spread all the wedding prep stuff out like this, it remained low-stress and there was no last minute scrambling to get everything done.
The one thing that of necessity had to be left to the week before was the flowers. We waited until Theresa’s high school friend, Loi, arrived who had volunteered to arrange all the flowers. The day after she got here we decided to drop by a few florists to see what was on offer. The first place we stopped was Peter Barter’s shop, across the street from Immaculate Conception. The flowers were nice but expensive. There wasn’t a huge selection up front in the case, but we peeked into the back room and saw many unopened cases.
We chatted a bit with the owner, he wanted to know exactly what we were looking for. Well, I didn’t have a clear idea about flowers. So I wasn’t able to be very helpful. He told us he was doing a couple of big weddings the same weekend as mine. But I was pretty clear I didn’t want to have a florist do arrangements for us. Just too far out of my budget.
Finally, he suggested that we look at flowers at Stop and Shop. He explained that they get their flowers from the same distributors he uses. In fact, because they are able to buy in bulk they get the first pick of flowers, often buying whole lots. He said their quality is now as good as any florist and their prices are better. We thanked him profusely for the great advice.
Our next stop was Stop and Shop… it was too early to buy flowers, but we wanted to get a good sense of what they had. I pretty quickly decided I wanted roses, antique white if possible, for my bouquet and red and white for Tree’s. We’d do matching flowers for boutonnieres and maybe some of the bright mini mums or daisies for the centerpieces.
(Theresa and I had found the glassware for the centerpieces at the Christmas Tree Shop: two different sizes of small crystal bowls as well as crystal candlestick holders that when inverted made gorgeous pedestal bowls—I’d have walked right by them but Theresa’s eye was quick to imagine the possibilities. It was she who turned the candlesticks upside down to form little bowls.)
So that was taken care of. The day before the wedding we dashed to the grocery store just as my parents were going to the airport to pick up my grandmother. We got the flowers and fresh strawberries for the cake for under $80. Theresa and Loi later grabbed some calla lilies at another stop and shop and I grabbed one more bunch of roses from another location as I returned from my own run to pick up my friend Norah from the airport.
I know from attendance at past weddings—and from what everyone has told me—that the bride and groom get very little time to actually spend with their guests at the reception. Well, I didn’t want to miss out on seeing all my friends who were coming from Texas, Florida, Tennessee, Washington State, etc. or my family who were coming from Texas, Arizona, Nevada, Illinois, Indiana, etc.
Thus early in the planning—and inspired as well by my Aunt Mary’s rehearsal dinner where the entire extended family met at the local pizza place—I decided that Friday night we would have an informal get-together at my apartment (now our apartment) so we could get to visit with all the out of town guests. (Actually only my out of towners showed up, none of Dom’s got the notice.)
So Friday afternoon people started arriving. Mom and Dad were here with Aunt Mary and Grandma Scott when we got home with the flowers. Later Uncle Dan and Aunt Lois showed up after getting lost on the streets of Salem and sometime later Uncle Phil Aunt Eileen and my cousin James also dropped by—they had gps so didn’t get lost.
All returned to hotels for naps or went out sightseeing but returned later that evening for the pizza party. My best friend from college, Stephanie, volunteered to organize things and she recruited many helpers among others of my friends. As I collected flowers and chatted with relatives she hauled my brothers and friends around in her rental car to pick up black socks, to go to the grocery store, and many other errands I don’t know the details of.
She delegated people to make salads, to bring beer, and she ordered a great selection of pizzas. SO I didn’t have to worry about a thing but enjoying my guests.
Soon after five the house was packed with friends and family. Everyone seemed to mingle well, I don’t recall who I talked to or what I said, ,but it was a nice, relaxed evening. with the fringe benefit of everyone getting to see the place where Dom and I would soon settle down to married life.