Tuesday, October 24, 2006

weddings ... can i really be bothered?

Me, Beth, Dolly, Karen

I don't think so ... at least not the traditional, formal sort.

LOL! So, Mike and I both attended weddings this past weekend. Too bad it wasn't the same one. I was in my best friend's wedding ... my first time ever as a bride's maid ... and probably my last. And Mike attended an old schoolmate's wedding (his brother Dave was in the groom's party).

Hmm ... what are some things one can do to take care of some of the really un-necessary headaches? Now I have been to all of maybe FIVE weddings in my lifetime ... but I'm constantly struck by the absurd pomp and circumstance ... it all seems so un-necessarily formal.

DON'T GET ME WRONG! Dolly's wedding was fabulous. She'll have gorgeous memories to cherish for a lifetime. And I got to be a bridesmaid! Woo Hoot!

But I imagine weddings are personal preferences. So why do so many women conform to the same ol' equations?

But then again ... I've never been one who could be stuffed in a "box" and categorized and conform to the "way things *ought* to be".

(side note) Karen and I made our dresses and Dolly made Beth's. We were quite the fashion designers in college!

(side note 2) I wasn't going to wear a necklace. Normally don't when I'm wearing such finery. I try to let the dress speak for itself. But I thought the professional pictures might be a little off if there wasn't SOMETHING around my neck. So I snagged one of the ribbons decorating one of the gift baskets and tied it around my neck. The bow kept slipping towards the center and at one point in between shots Dolly motioned that my neckribbon was not off-center any more.

young, attractive, trendy photographer: (slight wink) Are you trying to cover something up?

me: Nah, I just want to keep the bow on the side. I think it looks better that way.

yatp: Ah, I thought maybe you were covering a hickie.

me: ROFL!!! Wouldn't THAT be funny! No, hardly. My boyfriend is in Australia!

(side note 3) I ALWAYS told Dolly that she'd get married before I would.

(side note 4) The girls told me about some story that circulated around college where some chick got married ... her bridesmaids were wearing white shirts, khaki skirts, and held a sheet in front of the bride as she walked down the aisle ... what the?!! Maybe that's too informal ... and just plain WEIRD!!!

(side note 5) All of us look fabulous in green. The wedding was like the return of the "green girls". A time when Karen, Dolly, and I all went to an fancy-shmancy organ concert dressed in green carrying *fake* lilies ... there may have been a little horseplay and whacking of flowers stems along the way ... you can never take us too seriously.


Jim the 3rd said...

Congratulations, Dolly! Guess you're not crumcakes anymore.

ckhnat said...

nope ... she's a Whitley now

CraigS said...

My main moral objection to weddings is the huge expense involved. You could feed a 3rd World village for a year for the cost of the average wedding.

Most of the cost is actually in the reception. A few couples from church have recently elected to do a coctail reception, with just nibblies and drinks, rather than a full meal. Much cheaper...

ckhnat said...

me too, Craig. It REALLY irks me! why is it that (in general) people insist on living outside their means in this? Some wait for YEARS to marry until they've saved enough money to have the smash-bang event of the year wedding.

I tend to think that this celebration (both solemn and joyous) ought to be an honest reflection of the two people committing their lives to each other under God. Why insist on uber-formality and stiffness? ... why pretend to be a queen? ... why spend 100s of $ on flowers that die in a day or two?

200 years ago engagements were relatively short. Sometimes only as long as it took the bans to be published (2 weeks?) and then whoosh we're married before God and our family.

I'm approaching this as a person who admits that she is incredibly ignorant of wedding culture and traditions ... i am NOT attacking or judging anyone's choices in how they had their own weddings. If you can convince me of the benefits of traditional, formal weddings, I shall certainly consider their value when my time comes ... but till then ... help me understand ... why 2 year engagements? why dresses that no one (even the bridesmaids) will ever wear again? why the antique cars or horse and buggy? why the stiff symetrical same ol' same ol' wedding photos? why the walking down the aisle? why all the money?

Is it naive of me to want to view it as the Siberian Brethren do? The Church family gathers together and prepares a wonderful meal, decorates the church, the men set up the tables and chairs, everyone takes care of everything ... men, women, children all have a role in making this day special. The Bride and Groom only have to worry about putting on their best dress and suit and saying their vows. The church family has had the blessing of being a crucial part of such a joyous day in this couple's life. And when the next wedding comes along, that first couple in turn is blessed by helping make another wonderful day for another new couple.

I'd like to see the church family have a larger role in the weddings of their members. We are family, afterall.

sajini said...

You look buuutifull!!! What's your beef with "walking down the aisle?" :)

ckhnat said...

I don't know Saj, maybe i'm mentally associating it with the fairytale notion of the bride who is determined to be a princess for a day.

sajini said...

What would suggest then? or what do you think is less princessy??

Anonymous said...

The only wedding rule in my book is that whatever the bride wants is right. I say go for whatever kind of wedding you want. Who cares what anyone else thinks?

Of course, I'm coming from the West Coast where things are decidedly unformal. I was really pleased with how my wedding turned out. I had just a few simplification strategies:
1. only one attendant - only one dress to worry about, no arguments about what dress makes who look too fat.
2. only 5 posed photos. No hours of waiting around with endless combinations of the same people.
3. dismiss the guests from the wedding, eliminating the reception line.
4. turn over all responsibility for the details on the day so that we only have to look pretty and say our vows.

It can be done. Just pick the things that are important to you.

papabear said...

aw, not even a small temptation to have a Regency-style wedding if it were possible?

Alex & Laura Beth said...

Christine, you need to go to a few Sojourn weddings if you want to see different/informal, etc. I went to one last night where the groomsmen wore black jeans. Cosper performed the wedding and wore jeans. The bride wore a beautiful and simple vintage dress with white Chucks (Converse All-Stars). The ladies wore very pretty black dresses from Anthropologie (I think?). They rode away on bikes. Of course, all the Sojourn weddings have the Sojourn musicians playing beautiful emo/indie instumental music, definitely not the traditional Pachabel's Canon in D at all.