What social gathering rocked your socks off in 2010? Describe the people, music, food, drink, clothes, shenanigans.

Well, of COURSE I’m going to have to say that my own wedding was the best party of 2010.

Planning it was a beast.  Jef was still living in Cleveland, while I was in Cincinnati.  We got permission to marry over Halloween weekend, and set the date of our marriage for January 16th.  Two and a half months to get ready.  Jef and I both really wanted things to be simple, small, and inexpensive.  Both of us have big families.  It was nerve-wracking at best.  I didn’t realize how much pressure people were going to put on me to make this “THE BEST DAY OF YOUR LIFE, OMG!”  Why on earth would I want the one event that’s never supposed to occur again be the highlight of my existence?  Why would I care more about a party than about my impending marriage?  Luckily, I discovered A Practical Wedding, which helped me keep my head on straight while engaging in stressful activities such as

  • turning down my mother’s offer to buy me a $300 wedding dress, and buying a $30 white sundress at the mall instead.
  • explaining that not only would there not be free booze, there would be no alcohol at all.
  • talking to the dozens of incredulous women who couldn’t believe that I actually preferred not having an engagement ring
  • helping people understand that we were marrying each other, no officiant would be “marrying us”

But the wedding!  The wedding itself was fantastic.

The ceremony was short.  Really short.  I’m talking 5 minutes.  We came up the aisle.  (No music or ceremony, we just let ourselves in.)  Jef talked a little.  Then I said a prayer.  He said one.  Then we both recited the Baha’i marriage vow: “We will all, verily, abide by the will of God.”

My sister untied the ribbon that held both our rings (made of rosewood) from around my neck.  We exchanged them, kissed, and headed out.  Everyone followed us into the other room.  Since we had the whole building, (the College Club, an old mansion in Cleveland Heights), people wandered around to the different food stations in different rooms, chatting and getting to know each other.  We wanted our families to mingle and become friends, so we didn’t set out lots of tables for people to get tied down to.

The food?  There were spring rolls, sandwiches, cheese and crackers, coffee, and WEDDING PIE!  (Cake is so overrated.)  I honestly ate so little of it that I can hardly remember!  I do remember that there was soda; my sister came up behind me while I was reading the guestbook-sketchbook, and I spilled Coke all down the front of my dress.  Right before taking pictures.  But it came out with a little scrubbing in the bathroom.  Nobody could even tell.

The entertainment?  We had an open mic type reception, complete with hilarious stories, ukulele sing-alongs, and selections from the Mikado.  My father played the Grieg nocturne that I learned for Solo and Ensemble Contest in 12th grade.  Gabi talked about how the first time she ever met me I told her I didn’t think I’d ever get married.  I told the story of how Jef and I came to be a couple (it involved the classic line, “What the hell, wanna marry me?”).  It was fabulous.

The people were our families and close mutual friends.  And a ton of my favorite little girls!  Both our families and friends are total goofballs, so a great time was had by all.

Was it the best day of my life?  Hell, no.  The best day of my life is, by definition, one not spent in shiny shoes.  But was it the best wedding I’ve ever attended?  YES.  The best party of the year?  ABSOLUTELY.  We kept true to ourselves while making our loved ones feel welcomed and at home, and accomplished our goal of bringing our families together as friends.

January, 2011 will mark one year of marriage for us.  Definitely a great excuse to keep up the celebrating!

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