We went to a family wedding this weekend in Utah. Which was great for lots of reasons: we caught up on family stories, we partied with the relatives, we got to see Pony Girl really dressed up, and I got to squeeze in a visit with an old friend. And the fun thing about this wedding is that the bride was one of our ring bearers 15 years ago, and actually caught my bouquet. (None of the single women there wanted anything to do with it!)
We flew in Friday and hurried to the rehearsal site, just in time to see the END of the rehearsal. That was o.k., because Pony Girl is pretty smart and caught the gist of her job in a few seconds: follow the other flower girl and throw the flower petals UP so they flutter DOWN. And smile and be lovely. No problem.
Off to the rehearsal dinner. Just a few blocks, so we could walk there. Go two blocks south, then one east. Oops, not the right place. So we asked directions. No, it's two blocks east of here, then one south. Walk, walk, with two hungry and travel-tired kids hurrying along. Crap, not here either. Cell phone rings, it's the father of the bride. Are you lost, he asks. Oh yeah, it turns out that the second person who gave us bad directions had us walk right past the back side of the place and four blocks out of our way. BUT we finally made it, just in time for dinner. A lot of fun, and the bride came by to let us know that I didn't have to do Pony Girl's hair; the whole wedding party was being done at the wedding site. Ya-hoo for me, and Pony Girl too, who has little patience for me fiddling with her hair.
After the dinner was a meet-and-greet party for family and friends, where five lucky couples played "The Newlywed Game". S.P. and I volunteered, despite having sucked at this game five years ago on our 10-year anniversary trip to Sandals. Without going into embarrassing detail, I can say we have not improved with time. Luckily Jones fell asleep on a sofa and missed the whole thing; Pony Girl witnessed our last-place finish.
Next morning the kids swam with their dad and aunt while I visited with family, then it was off to the wedding venue for Pony Girl and me. She decided on lots of curls, and while she was getting done up and hanging with the "big girls", I got to hang with my friend. You all know her as Suz, the Queen of Green Jello. We hadn't seen each other for 20 years, and it was a treat to just sit down with her. She showed me fabulous pictures of beautiful Utah, beautiful daughters, and a handsome man who she is enjoying life with. (Did you know you glow when you talk about Ron, Suz?) It wasn't a long time to spend together, but I felt very blessed to have seen her and shared a bit of time.
The wedding itself was very sweet, with the groom not bothering to hide his tears at first sight of the bride, and lots of funny, tender moments. Afterward we rode a travel bus up into the mountains for the reception where we toasted, watched a slide show full of photos of the couple (including one from our wedding where the bride attended us as a little girl) and danced a lot. Jones was the "family photographer" and kept disappearing with the camera to take pictures. When we got home there were some really, um, artistic-looking shots that were either too dark or too oddly angled to tell what they were, but for the most part he got some very good ones. Several of Pony Girl and S.P. dancing during the bridal party dance, and a excellent one of the bride and groom together.
Near the end of the evening the bouquet was tossed. All the single ladies went out, and the flower girls were encouraged to join them. They should have passed out catcher's mitts, because the flowers hit the floor twice without anyone laying a finger on them. The third time it went up, up, up...and no, Pony Girl didn't catch it.
It was a great wedding, and a wonderful weekend, and just so magical, almost, to see the bride come full circle from the little girl at our wedding to the beautiful woman at her own. Her dad told us that the years would just fly by and before we knew it we would be giving our little girl away.
Now there's something to think about.