It was a sunny bright day at Goldner Walsh Nursery in Pontiac Michigan. The sun just began to dip down when we started our wedding ceremony in their outdoor amphitheater.
Joe and Christy stood before me all smiles and excitement and as we moved through their ceremony emotions began to take hold. I could see a happy tear here and there and when they reached the time to share their personally drafted wedding vows well it was just too much to keep in. They wiped the tears from their faces and smiled once more as we moved to do their unity glass ceremony. We invited their parents to help blend the pieces of glass that would later become an art piece, blown glass from an artist, a piece that would rest in their home as a reminder of their wedding day and the love that they share.
It was such a joy to spend their wedding ceremony with them and I wish Joe and Christy all the happiness this life can show them.
WEDDING READING Love by Laura Hendricks
Love is friendship caught fire; it is quiet, mutual confidence, sharing and forgiving. It is loyalty through good and bad times. It settles for less than perfection, and makes allowances for human weaknesses. Love is content with the present, hopes for the future, and does not brood over the past. It is the day-in and day-out chronicles of irritations, problems, compromises, small disappointments, big victories, and working toward common goals. If you have love in your life, it can make up for a great many things you lack. If you do not have it, no matter what else there is, it is not enough.
A WEDDING READING Blessing For A Marriage, by James Dillet Freeman” notes marriage as a unique relationship. He writes as follows:
May your marriage bring you all the exquisite excitements a marriage should bring, and may life grant you also patience, tolerance, and understanding.
May you always need one another — not so much to fill your emptiness as to help you to know your fullness.
A mountain needs a valley to be complete. The valley does not make the mountain less, but more. And the valley is more a valley because it has a mountain towering over it. So let it be with you and you.
May you need one another, but not out of weakness. May you want one another, but not out of lack. May you entice one another, but not compel one another.
May you embrace one another, but not out encircle one another. May you succeed in all-important ways with one another, and not fail in the little graces.
May you look for things to praise, often say, “I love you!” and take no notice of small faults.
If you have quarrels that push you apart, may both of you hope to have good sense enough to take the first step back.
May you enter into the mystery that is the awareness of one another’s presence — no more physical than spiritual, warm and near when you are side by side, and warm and near when you are in separate rooms or even distant cities.
May you have happiness, and may you find it making one another happy.
May you have love, and may you find it loving one another.
A WEDDING reading titled: “Sooner or Later”
“Sooner or later we begin to understand that love is more than verses on valentines, and romance in the movies. We begin to know that love is here and now, real and true, the most important thing in our lives. For love is the creator of our favorite memories, and the foundation of our fondest dreams. Love is a promise that is always kept, a fortune that can never be spent, a seed that can flourish in even the most unlikely of places. And this radiance that never fades, this mysterious and magical joy, is the greatest treasure of all -- one known only by those who love."
A WEDDING READING Every Day by David Leviathan
"This is what love does: It makes you want to rewrite the world. It makes you want to choose the characters, build the scenery, guide the plot. The person you love sits across from you, and you want to do everything in your power to make it possible, endlessly possible. And when it’s just the two of you, alone in a room, you can pretend that this is how it is, this is how it will be."
A reading titled: “Love isn’t practical.”
Love isn’t practical. It isn’t meant to be easy. It does not appear on command. It does not let you fall for whomever you would like. It surfaces neither at the most opportune moment nor in the most convenient. It will pair you with someone you might never have expected. It will put you fact to face with endless obstacles. But, in the end, none of that twill matter because it is how you overcome its obstacles that will define your love. It may not be practical, but love is ultimately the best thin that will ever happen to you.
From Captain Corelli’s Mandolin – by Louis Bernieres:
Love is a temporary madness; it erupts like volcanoes and then subsides. And when it subsides you have to make a decision. You have to work out whether your roots have so entwined together that it is inconceivable that you should ever part. Because this is what love is. Love is not breathlessness, it is not excitement, it is not the promulgation of eternal passion. That is just being in love, which any fool can do. Love itself is what is left over when being in love has burned away, and this is both an art and a fortunate accident. Those that truly love have roots that grow towards each other underground, and when all the pretty blossoms have fallen from their branches, they find that they are one tree and not two.
This reading seemed appropriate with Steinbeck as one of my brother’s favorite authors. While Steinbeck is best known for East of Eden and Cannery Row, he was also a prolific letter-writer. This is an exert from a response to his eldest son Thom's 1958 letter, in which the teenage boy confessed to have fallen desperately in love with a girl at boarding school. Steinbeck's words are tender, optimistic, timeless, and sage and speak to what love can be.
November 10, 1958
We had your letter this morning. I will answer it from my point of view and of course Elaine will from hers.
First -- if you are in love -- that's a good thing -- that's about the best thing that can happen to anyone. Don't let anyone make it small or light to you.
Second -- There are several kinds of love. One is a selfish, mean, grasping, egotistical thing which uses love for self-importance. This is the ugly and crippling kind. The other is an outpouring of everything good in you -- of kindness and consideration and respect -- not only the social respect of manners but the greater respect which is recognition of another person as unique and valuable. The first kind can make you sick and small and weak but the second can release in you strength, and courage and goodness and even wisdom you didn't know you had.
You say this is not puppy love. If you feel so deeply -- of course it isn't puppy love. But I don't think you were asking me what you feel. You know better than anyone. What you wanted me to help you with is what to do about it -- and that I can tell you.
Glory in it for one thing and be very glad and grateful for it. The object of love is the best and most beautiful. Try to live up to it.
Lastly, I know your feeling because I have it and I'm glad you have it…And don't worry about losing. If it is right, it happens -- The main thing is not to hurry. Nothing good gets away.
From The Irrational Season – Madeleine L’Engle
But ultimately there comes a moment when a decision must be made. Ultimately two people who love each other must ask themselves how much they hope for as their love grows and deepens, and how much risk they are willing to take. It is indeed a fearful gamble. Because it is the nature of love to create, a marriage itself is something which has to be created, so that, together we become a new creature.
To marry is the biggest risk in human relations that a person can take. If we commit ourselves to one person for life this is not, as many people think, a rejection of freedom; rather it demands the courage to move into all the risks of freedom, and the risk of love which is permanent; into that love which is not possession, but participation. It takes a lifetime to learn another person. When love is not possession, but participation, then it is part of that co-creation which is our human calling, and which implies such risk that it is often rejected.
How to have a perfect Ceremony
Weather! It's unpredictable but always a good idea to tell your guests if your cermeony is outdoors. Put that info on your save the date, invitation, website, t-shirts...you get the idea. It helps guests come prepared; think shoes, umbrella, coat, water, mittens - whatever they may need.
Outdoor Ceremony! When having an outdoor ceremony I always think of grandma sitting in the hot sun or cold weather; I've got a thing for old people...I love them! And in order to make your guests comfortable it's great to provide water, umbrellas or some sort of cover for shade, personal fans, warm blankets for those chilly October ceremonies. Hey, the happier they are the more dancing and fun they will have later on with you!
It's Raining! First, don't fret over things you have no control over - that's a life motto right there! When your planning your wedding day, see the indoor back up location, ask to see pictures of it all set up, ask if there are options, find out all the info. I know you are dreaming of that sunny outdoor ceremony but if it's pouring its such a relief to know you planned for this and it's okay. There are some venues who offer amazing indoor locations - search for them, use them! It's Michigan and weather is very unpredictable especially for weddings. And if it does rain make the call early to move it inside so your floral and DJ have amble time to make it beautiful.
Make it Personal! Make your wedding ceremony personal. I mean, it's your wedding day it should be all about you. I work with each wedding couple to create a ceremony that tells their love story, so on your wedding day your guests are reminded of how you got to be standing in front of each other making the choice to be married.
Write your own vows! This one is something you will not regret. It may feel overwhelming and too much, but it's really not - carve out a hour or two and sit down and write. Begin with what you love about your partner, what do you admire about them. Recall the reasons you chose to marry them and what you look forward to in your future together. Oh and for good measure throw in a few promises or vows "I promise to do the dishes when you cook" I promise to fold the laundry" I promise to be your champion and cheerleader" things that are personal to you.
Music! It can be traditional of course...but...what if you turned it up a notch, what if you brought the unexpected to your wedding day? Find a song that you love that speaks to the both of you and rock that jam during your ceremony. Usually you need one piece for the bridal party, a piece for the bride and a recessional song. Again, make it personal.
First Look? Your photographer is so not going to like my answer...NO. I'm a hopeless romantic, I love the magic of when the couples sees each other for the first time at the aisle. There is so much built up anticipation and joy that you can't recreate that! So knock out as many photos as you can without seeing each other before hand, extend your cocktail hour, move your ceremony time up to account for proper lighting and save your first look for the wedding ceremony aisle, it's freaking magical okay!
look for a second post soon