Wedding Wrap-up: The Big Day

The weather was forecasted to be partly cloudy with thundershowers in the afternoon. It was concerning, and unexpected. August weather is usually reliably sunny around here. I knew there was nothing I could do, but I worried anyway. And checked weather reports constantly.

The day dawned cloudy. I cringed. The weather forecast hadn’t changed. It was at this moment that I chose to ask my mom, if she could, to give us good weather for the day. I envisioned sun and bright blue skies with few clouds. That is not what I received.

The view from where we got married when it is sunny -- you can see why I might have wanted that! (Image taken by my lovely friend Alison)

The view from where we got married when it is sunny — you can see why I might have wanted that (Photo taken by my lovely friend Alison)

The clouds did not dissipate for the late-morning ceremony. Fortunately, my worry did as I walked down the aisle under bright grey skies. We said our vows–I could barely comprehend it was happening, it seemed so much like a dream. There are at least a couple pictures out there of me looking like a deer trapped in headlights. I just wanted it to sink in so that I could appreciate it. (Luckily for me there is a video of the ceremony for that)

After the ceremony, there were hugs and tears with our treasured guests, some of whom hadn’t been seen in over 9 years. It was hard not to be overwhelmed with the love that was present there.

We took a few group photos, and then everyone piled under the tent where the reception was to be held. It was then that the first few drops of rain began to fall. The rain continued to fall lightly, sporadically, during the wedding party and couple photos. Enough to frizz my hair (sigh), but not enough to really cause any damage.

The gift table - which had to be pulled under the tent when it started to rain. We made the guest book ourselves, and the guest fish was a wonderful idea from my new mother-in-law (photo taken by my lovely friend Nicole)

The gift table – which had to be pulled under the tent when it started to rain. We made the guest book ourselves, and the guest fish was a wonderful idea from my new mother-in-law (photo taken by my lovely friend Nicole)

It was minutes after I returned to the tent post outfit-change that it began to pour. But everyone was under the tent, so it didn’t matter. Lunch was delicious, and also raw vegan. Many people were very impressed and told us so–which was especially nice since it was a worry point with me, that people wouldn’t like it.

Since it was still raining when it came time for dancing, the tables were pushed aside, chairs put in a ring and the dance area was in the middle. We had our first dance surrounded by wonderful, lovely people. Which, I must say, was way better than the original plan.

Soon after that, the rain stopped, and the sun came out. The foosball table was dragged out and a tournament was arranged. People kept dancing. We had unbelievably delicious vegan cake. The 90’s kids rocked out to Backstreet’s Back. Oh yes, we did that. And it was one of my favourite moments, I have to say, everyone suddenly getting up to dance again, belting out the lyrics.

It was sunny for the rest of the day, even as we left. There was probably a beautiful sunset from our hotel room, although we were still so buzzed on the rest of the day, we didn’t really notice.


The end result of the head table, after all the hard work. I’ll do a breakdown of these decorations in a future post! (Photo taken by my lovely friend Nicole)

With the clouds and rain, initially I thought that my mom hadn’t heard me, or didn’t have enough pull with the weather gods to pull off the change. But then I realized we had the perfect weather. The cloudy ceremony was excellent for pictures, I didn’t get too hot in my mountainous dress, and I wasn’t all squinty (I often wear sunglasses in cloudy weather, my eyes are that sensitive). The sporadic and then downpour of rain kept the wasps away from the snacks and then lunch that was out. And, of course, caused the awesome move of the dance floor to inside the tent. Then it became sunny after all the food had been cleared, making for the perfect finish.

So, she was there, and she did hear me, because, like any mom would, she gave me the weather I needed, not the weather I wanted.

And, that realization was really what made it the perfect day. That, and I got married to the most wonderful man in the world.

Thank you to everyone who has been going on this wedding journey with me! Just one more post to wrap up all the DIY and then life really will be back to normal! Did you enjoy these posts?

P.S. Did you vote in the poll yet?


Capturing the Memories

This last weekend, I visited the place I will get married in just 47 days. It is a place that has a lot of meaning for my family, and I have a lot of wonderful memories there. It is the place that I feel my mother the strongest–which is one of the main reasons we chose to get married there. That, and it is beautiful.

Being there, as wonderful as it is, is a bit of a tease. I feel just that much closer to my mother, but she is still untouchable. As the wedding draws closer, I feel the desperate need to find things that remind me of her, to capture her memory. Slowly, I begin to realize that no matter how many things I gather that remind me of her in one place, it will never be enough.

I have questions. Questions that can only be answered by her. People tell me that she would love my partner, that she would be so happy for me, and that she, in the end, wouldn’t care what I do with my last name. But I want to hear it from her. I want to know, with certainty, that she would, indeed, be excited for this wedding. Because I don’t know. And it is hurting my heart.

I’ve been told to look inwards, because her memory is as much alive within me as anyone else. I’ve looked. Maybe I am doing it wrong, but all I have found is scattered memories and sadness. There is not enough there for me to answer my questions. I have hope that one day those memories will coalesce into something solid. But I cannot escape the possibility the memories will simply become more vague, and this is as solid as it ever gets.

So I need help. For those of you who knew my mother, please help me capture her memory by sending me your favourite memory/memories of her. For everyone, have you ever successfully captured a lost loved one’s memory? Or is this an impossible task?

The Post I’ve Been Putting Off

There is a post that I’ve started writing at least twice now. I have two drafts that I will probably never publish because I couldn’t bring myself to do something that personal. But I feel like a blog is about sharing bits of one’s self, in crafty form or otherwise. And there is a large piece of myself that I want to share that I mentioned in my previous post.

My mom passed away from cancer almost 3 years ago. In reality, I think it was the drugs that killed her, although if they hadn’t, the cancer would’ve gotten her eventually. You see, it was brain cancer, a kind that rarely gives into the drugs. And cancer treatments are just so brutal…after brain surgery, and two rounds of radiation and chemotherapy, her body just couldn’t keep fighting.

How has this affected my life? It has been hell. I can’t even describe to you how terrible it has been. As she was diagnosed, as she slipped into illness, when she passed away, my world got smaller and smaller until I was barely functioning. It was all I could do to get up each morning and go to work and pretend my life was somewhat normal.

My friends tried to help, but they couldn’t reach me. My whole world had fallen apart and if I let anyone in, I wouldn’t be able to keep going. Nonetheless, I resented them, when they gave up and stopped fighting to try and get in. Some never gave up on me though. And those friends are the real ones that I will be forever grateful for. They’re the ones who kept me going, although they probably felt helpless.

Now, years later, I still take some measure of pride in being able to act so normal that people never suspect the giant hole in my heart. This comes with a downside, however. People forget, and they say things, and it hurts. It’s not their fault, though, it’s mine. My mother was a wonderful person. It kills me that she’s not around to meet my fiance, watch me get married, help me plan the wedding. That shouldn’t be something I try to hide, I have every right to cry and hurt.

But I’m scared. If I put my biggest weakness on display, someone could hurt me with it. Easily. So I’m trying to take the big step and trust. And maybe, just maybe, it will help that hole in my heart heal over a bit.

Have you ever lost someone who was intrinsic to your life? If you have or are going to get married, how did you or do you plan to include their memory in the proceedings?