And so begins the overwhelming wedding posts.
There is so much I want to say about this day that I want to apologize in advance for being wordy. I will try to let the pictures speak for themselves when I can.
Before I start showing you the beauty of this day, and telling about all the things that happened on it, I need to spend a post talking about the people who made it all possible.
There are so many ways to do a wedding, and I am positive that we did not pick the easiest way, though we didn’t really have a choice. In trying to do things around various constraints, we ended up asking for a lot of help from our friends and families. And they came through, which meant that the wedding weekend is a blur of all of our favorite people gathered around us and supporting us. I would not have it any other way — though who knows, they might, if given the option.
A small army of our Hillsdale friends came in Friday night for Bachelor(ette) activities and then they showed up the next morning to help us decorate the reception site. We had our reception in a public park, reserved by my little brother who literally slept on the courthouse steps back in January to reserve it for us. The space is beautiful but it needed some work which means everyone pitching in: all of the bridal party, plus any spouses or significant others that were tagging along, plus anyone who innocently happened by. This meant that our friends – some of who had travelled 12 hours, others who had flown in from another country – got up early to clean a public pavilion. (I am pausing to reflect on how AMAZING our friends are. Feel free to join me.)
Then, because it was a public space, we had to have park sitters for the next 24 hours. This meant that some of our friends stayed late on Saturday, got there early on Sunday, or stayed up until the ceremony to help. One of my former students watched the pavilion during the actual ceremony, which just shows I wasn’t above asking everyone. Sunday morning a big group of my girlfriends from college showed up to help set up tables – some of who had also spent so much of the day before working. I. Am. Blessed.
I can’t even go into all the people who helped in other ways. Jordan, who did every task I threw at him and DJ’d our whole wedding. Ana-Joel who worked, decorated, and then did most of the bridesmaids’ hair. James’ mom who made the world’s best cake and supplied so many of our decorations. Abby and Elyse who provided the amazing music for our ceremony, who established the soundtrack for our day. Jeremy’s dad for doing something so amazing that I am not even going to share it yet because it is a surprise. All the people who hosted out-of-town guests in their homes. The countless girlfriends who were conned in to spending many summer hours assembling wedding things. The list goes on and on forever.
Over the next week (s), I will share so many photos and stories of the day itself, but I didn’t feel right putting those up without this first post. Before the wedding was the work. And behind the work were all the people who love us, who have been rooting for us from the beginning, and who rejoiced with us at our wedding.
We love y’all.
Unsolicited Wedding Advice #1: Find a way to get all your friends in from out of town early because you are going to be craving time with them and the actual day goes too quickly. You don’t have to put them to work, obviously. We had some stuff Friday but also a big bonfire Saturday night. The bonfire took very little planning but was a ton of fun and a great way to see the people who had traveled far to be with us.
If I ever con someone into marrying me, can I rent your friends?
Totally. I will even throw myself in for free.
We were so glad to be there!! And I loved that everything we did there “was a tangible witness of our commitment to support Hannah and James in their marriage as the months and years pass.” (from my blog. http://acheerfulheart.wordpress.com/2012/07/24/great-things-he-hath-done/ )
Maybe I cried when I read that post….: )
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