Yesterday, my longtime friend and mother-of-the-bride gave her special gift of elegant fare and warm hospitality. Katie is a caterer, a true culinary artist. Feeding people is just one of the ways she cares for others, and today it was an especially beautiful thing. The bride was stunningly beautiful, the groom, strong with a spontaneous laugh that lit up the room. A pleasure and privilege to be a part of the celebration.
Thinking over each wedding, I smile, remembering how the first bride and groom lovingly gazed into each other’s eyes under the trees, reminding me of a Mumford and Son’s kind of song. At the third one, with it’s homespun sweetness, the bride’s radiance was beyond compare. Sharing with friends we haven’t seen for too long, a pleasure and benefit of belonging to a community.
Here is a little painting/card I painted for the bride and groom of the second wedding, in honor of them, reflecting my favorite artist, Marc Chagall, who also was a hopeless romantic. It seemed fitting, since both the bride and groom were a part of my Art classes in high school, and are still pursuing artistic endeavors. It was there I first began to witness their love story. It’s not every day one gets to be a part of someone else’s story, but both Keith and I and our daughter are a part of theirs. We’ve known and loved their families for years. Both the bride and groom were two of those amazing students who make teaching really fulfilling and fun. Creative, hardworking, kind, and funny. During those difficult last years of the school, we were blessed to have a number of students and teachers who connected with one other, learning and teaching creatively, growing in many ways before we were scattered to the wind. We inspired each other’s imaginations to greater possibilities. Literature came alive and was expressed visually. I have such good memories of those times, but that’s another story….
Back to the second wedding: Their’s was a fairytale wedding. Really it was. It began at the rehearsal dinner. Like the movie Tangled, in honor of the bride and groom who actually look very much like those two characters, the mother of the groom bought out lanterns for us to light and let go. As the warmth of the flame filled the lanterns, they floated up to join the starry host as we laughed and watched in wonder.
For the ceremony, trees were cleared in the woods of friend’s property. A winding path included photos of the beautiful couple, telling about their relationship. As we entered the woodland chapel, wide strips of white fabric shimmered between the trees with shadow leaves dancing on them through the dappled light. Celtic music, daisies, hymns, and the story…. The bride wrote their story in fairytale form and the Pastor did a masterful job of embellishing and retelling it in such a way that we were laughing one moment at the references to Princess Bride and crying the next at the sweet long-suffering of their story. The most profound thing to me was the honor shown to and by their families, and especially their love of God and deep knowing of His love for them. I feel honored to have been a part of it all.
Then came the reception on the great lawn in front of the barn, not unlike a celebration in the Shire. The bride and groom surprised us with a choreographed dance medley of some of their favorite songs to welcome us to the dance floor. Need I say more?
So for this hopeless romantic, it’s been a good run this summer, filled with love and new beginnings, along with some strong contrast to make the lovely parts shine even brighter. In witnessing these weddings, I am thankful for my dear husband, the love of my life, and our own story.