December 23, 2005. Before the social media craze.Our wedding didn’t have a hashtag. I didn’t post wedding or wedding prep photos on Facebook or Instagram. I didn’t have the treasure trove of ideas on Pinterest. I used The Knot website and magazine and Brides magazine to plan. The tops songs that year were Hollaback Girl by Gwen Stefani and Since U Been Gone by Kelly Clarkson. The top movies in 2005 were Star Wars Episode 3 and Walk The Line. And the girl a lot of people wondered if would ever settle down finally did with a quiet guy from Ireland at the ripe old age of 31.
FYI: As I mentioned we got married in 2005 and it was before digital wedding packages were affordable. (They did exist at least but would put a huge dent in the budget.) These are pictures of my pictures. Apologies on the quality. 🙂
1.Let’s get this one out of the way. Many people will ask, “Why in the world would you get married two days before Christmas?” Long story short we got engaged and knew it would take time to plan and so chose later in the year and with Ian’s family coming in from Ireland Christmas made the most sense. And yes, a few times our anniversary has fallen through the cracks with Christmas but we usually manage to squeeze in a date a little earlier. And it was a perfect day and I wouldn’t trade it for anything.
2. We got married at Oakwind Bed & Breakfast just outside of Houston. It was a pretty Colonial style home furnished with antiques and had a huge grounds with trees everywhere. I had always dreamed of an outdoor wedding so we planned for it with Plan B being to set up our small wedding in their large reception area. It rained the first 3 days of the week leading up to our Friday wedding and it looked like Plan B, but it cleared to beautiful sunny and 67 degree weather in time to let us do it outside.
3. Our colors were navy and white. I didn’t want to go with the traditional red and white that might have gone with a Christmas wedding and I wanted to keep the colors classic so that I didn’t look back at my photos in 20 years and wonder why I picked some trendy color. (Teal from the 80’s anyone?) I also didn’t want it to be too feminine since the guys would have to wear it on their tuxes. 8 years later and I’m still happy with navy.
4. We had our small outside wedding and I remember looking from my upstairs bedroom window where my mom, sister, and I were getting dressed and seeing the pretty chairs, candles, and flowers, and thinking “Wow! This is really about to happen!” I watched as the people we know and loved began arriving to watch us take our vows. I carried a bouquet of navy and white and did my own hair and makeup- which is a good thing because the lady I hired as a treat to do my sister and mom’s makeup made them look like a Mary Kay party gone bad. (We were able to get it corrected discreetly after they left.) My dress was simple other than a navy train with silver beading and a navy V at the waist with beading. I saw the dress in a magazine knew it was the one. I went to the store and they checked their system and their was only one left in their entire system on clearance in Kansas City. The dress was a 6 and I was an 8 but a seamstress worked wonders and I got my dress. 🙂 I carried a horseshoe as is traditional for many brides in Ireland and as shown in the photo below Ian’s mom presented me with a little chimney sweep as is also tradition as we walked up the aisle.
5. I only got one bite of my wedding cake on my wedding day and it was all gone! I took that as a good sign. When we came back the next day thankfully the on site planner had saved us a piece and even a day later it was pretty amazing so I can see why it vanished. We had that old standby at mass lunches- chicken breast. We also had beef wellington which we still talk about to this day. For those that asked every day up until the wedding, no Ian didn’t wear a kilt. Though some Irish have tartans and wear kilts that’s predominantly a Scottish custom. He wore a gray morning suit and left the kilt to the bagpiper which we also had- at the American’s request.
6. One of our paramount requests was to keep the ceremony short and low key. The minister did keep it short but at one point got a little “enthusiastic” during a verse, like wake you up if you were sleeping enthusiasm, and on the video you can see me almost burst out laughing at her dramatic outstretched arms which were NOT in the rehearsal. Van Morrison is kind of the soundtrack for our courtship and we chose Into The Mystic as our wedding song. It was also in American Pie as their wedding song which was one of our first dates. We keep saying if we get a boat as is one of dreams we will call it “The Mystic”. As I said we wanted to keep it fun and light so we walked back up the aisle to “When I’m Sixty-Four” which got some laughs.
7. Ian and I are both car buffs and so we chose a classic Rolls Royce as our getaway car. It was beautiful inside and out and absolutely immaculately cared for. I think some of our guests were more interested in the getaway car than the wedding. I think that’s our videographer by the car and I’m not sure why he’s photo bombing.
8. Here’s the thing with a 50 year old car. They are not really meant to sit in rush hour traffic. Our afternoon wedding and the 40 minute drive from Alvin back to our overnight hotel stay in Houston, put us in town right at rush hour. We lost count of how many times we had to pull over to let the car cool down so we could begin again. We were laughing so hard we were crying and at one point at one of the stops I went into the gas station in my wedding dress to get adult beverages. Between a busy wedding day and a breaking down Rolls we needed a drink. 🙂 People were honking and laughing with us though and it was still one of the most fun and beautiful afternoons we’ve had.
I took that as a good sign. If you can laugh when something goes wrong even on something as important as your wedding day then you’re probably a good match.