Sunday, April 19, 2015

Our Wedding Story

Once upon a time, because that’s how stories start, a dashing man and lovely lady were married 18 years ago on this very day.

bridal party
This is my favorite picture of our Elizabethan bridal party because is was impromptu. We were walking to the cars after the photo session and the photographer yelled “STOP!” and took this photo. A copy hung in his shop. I should also mention that the gazebo in on the grounds of a mental hospital. Somehow that seems fitting!
The man is still dashing. I call him Husband. He says the lady is still lovely. He calls her Lisa.
Husband and I met as new performers at the Ohio Renaissance Festival. I can still show you the spot on the grounds when the thought flashed through my head that I was going to marry him. I quickly pushed it out of my head thinking it was a result of being a single Maid of Honor in a recent family wedding.

I was wrong.

Husband asked the entire Faire cast to help him propose to me after the show closed. He didn’t want to do it during Festival hours because he didn’t want the patrons, or me, to think it was fake or part of the show.

There were dozens of pink roses (we started dating after exchanging anonymous pink roses the year before,) Shakespearean sonnets, Mother in Law’s engagement ring, and the dearest people in the world to us including my soon to be in laws. How could I possibly say no?

Husband and I got married the same way we courted and continue to live our married life – on our own terms. We had an Elizabethan wedding that honored our respective heritages (Scottish and Danish) with a few twists that made our parents raise their eyebrows but it was very us.

The first eyebrow raiser was being married in Husband’s family church instead of mine.  His church is over 200 years old and Husband’s family has been a part of it since Day One. So many of his family, including his parents, were married there it was like Husband’s ancestors were attending our wedding in spirit.

Just look at these stained glass windows! Is it any wonder why Husband and I like stained glass art so much? My processional was the Prince of Denmark’s March.

Although the church wrangling could have been a nefarious plot on Husband’s part. He had me make some very serious promises and commitments in front of his ancestors. I’m sure they will haunt me until the day I die if I ever do Husband wrong.

(Hi. Husband here: Yes! Exactly! MAW-HA-HA-HA!)

I wore my maternal grandmother’s jewelry that my grandfather gave her as my something old and blue. It felt like both of them were with me. Our siblings were in the wedding party. Pink roses were in my bouquet and Husband’s boutonniere. In the old Danish tradition, I made Husband’s wedding shirt (and his doublet.) 

So many people going through our receiving line asked Husband and I if we were glad if the ceremony was over. No way! The ceremony was the most important part of the day. The rest (endless photos, the reception, etc.) was a separate party to celebrate the fact that we slapped the cuffs of matrimony. It was like birthday-Christmas-Easter-Fourth of July was all on the same day!

That’s not to say there wasn’t any silliness involved. This is Husband and I were are talking about! Once the groomsmen got used to the idea they were wearing kilts, there was a whole lotta manly Scottish man posing and posturing. 

scottish dancing groomsmen
Like this impromptu attempt at Scottish Highland Dancing. Little did I know my Scottish dance friends planned to surprise me at the reception by dancing my favorite Scottish dance for me, Mari’s Wedding. I never felt so loved in my life! 

There was an emphasis on dancing at our reception because I was dancing at the time.  I asked one of my friends to lead us in Scottish Country (social) dancing. We got several compliments on how fun that made our reception from relatives (on the down low. It was a big year for family weddings.) It wasn’t all period  dancing.  Husband and I did a Vienna Waltz as our first dance although we did start and end with Honors (a traditional bow and curtsey.) 

frist wedding dance
Husband is wearing his family tartan. As part of the the Danish tradition of going under the cap (back in the day married Danish woman wore a black bonnet. It was a Thing to put it on a bride during the reception) Husband’s relatives presented me with the family plaid (a female version of what Husband is wearing over his shoulder.)
In one of those Parent Wishes vs. Our Wishes situations was our wedding cake and the knife. Husband’s family was all about the wedding cake topper. It not a sentimental priority for us because honesty, I’ve seen a lot of  faded beyond use cake toppers stuffed in memory boxes while planned our wedding reception. We opted for fresh flowers. My mom was all about buying an engraved cake knife. That one was a little more tricky to work around because Husband and I already had a little Top Secret skit planned about how a cake knife was too small and we should use the sword he wore instead.

cut wedding cake with sword
Tip: ALWAYS tell your photographer what Top Secret Special things you have planned for your wedding and reception. The only way we pulled this off and got awesome pictures to prove it was to tell our photographer and the groomsmen who lent Husband the sword so he could clean it with eatable oil.

Happy anniversary my love. Good times, bad times, happy times, sad times are all good times when shared with you. I love you now more than ever.

Elizabeath Scottish Bride and Groom

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