Highway to Happiness: Let’s Mingle

Wedding Recaps

Even though our plan had been to greet our guests as they arrived, the transportation mix-up meant that almost everyone had already arrived to greet us, instead. Either way, hugs and happiness overflowed our intimate gathering. The cheese, fruit, and pastries were hitting the spot as we had hoped, and I think there were just as many guests opting for coffee and tea and there were for Champagne or our signature cocktail. (Not wanting to risk a spill but finding myself suddenly parched, I stuck to ice water until after the ceremony.)

I especially love the overhead shots courtesy of the second shooter in the balcony. | All images via Pink Shutterbug Photography

I especially love the overhead shots courtesy of the second shooter in the balcony. | All images via Pink Shutterbug Photography

Roadie and I wandered among our guests and I admit to being a more than a little happy as they started complimenting us on our choice of venue as well as our decorations as they asked about several items. The small desk that held our ceremony programs in an antique from the one-room-schoolhouse days that Roadie and I refinished together–I’d grown up using it as a nightstand, but it predated that use by many years as we found out that Dr. Aunt had used it as a child, herself, and refinished it back when she was in high school. And if guests look closely at the corner of the lid they could still see the impression left by Brother Scooter’s front teeth from a long-ago bed-jumping incident. It may not seem exceedingly wedding-y, but it’s a part of our family’s shared memories, memories that were added to by Roadie and I working together to restore it, so it seemed right to have it serve a useful purpose as we started this next chapter of our own branch of the family history, you know?

It was great to see the little touches we'd plan work so well in the space.

It was great to see the little touches we’d plan work so well in the space.

Our cardbox got a decent workout during Cocktail Hour, but folks were, I think, a little stymied by the cork guest book (despite a sign to explain the hows and whys). We ended up with some signed corks, but less than expected. Oh, well, you win some, you lose some.

In the bottom picture you can see the golf cart that was supposed to pick us up acting as a piece of scenery.

In the bottom picture you can see the golf cart that was supposed to pick us up acting as a piece of scenery.

Now, there was  another hiccup during cocktail hour and that had to do with the music. I’d created playlists to run the allotted times starting with cocktail hour. I’d spend hours adding and removing songs to make the times work out just so, and labeled each playlist with the start time to make it virtually mistake-proof. I did this for a very specific reason as we’d planned to play  a specific song as the transition between cocktail hour and the prelude, and the playlists would easily flow from one segment to the next. And I’d gone over this musical cue with the DoC during our last planning meeting.


The wrinkle came when the DoC opted to start the cocktail hour playlist early–while they were still setting the area up and we were still taking pictures down the hill. I’d heard the music start, but hoped (since there was nothing to do about it from where I was) that she’d reset it at the appointed time.

I’m sure no one is surprised that she didn’t, and our transition song played at good 30 minutes early. *eyeroll* I remember hearing the opening measure and whipping my head around, looking for the DoC. She adjusted the playlist to an earlier track, but I’m afraid the damage was done. Instead of the distinctive intro to Europe’s The Final Countdown (yes, we did, we totally went there) sounding at 11:30, the DoC simply cut the music off completely. Instead of the gentle, gradual movement of guests (with chuckles from those who got the joke) from one side of the fountain to their seats on the other, the silence made everyone self-conscious about taking their time and they all rushed to their chairs.

The other songs I’d queued up for before the parents were seated? They got skipped, too. And this is how we found ourselves moving up the timeline a good 10 minutes.


The Road Trip Wedding Recaps:

Timing Is Everything

Third Time Wife, Wedding Planning

For our original wedding vision, though the locations and reception menu were in flux, I was pretty much set on a sunset ceremony.

Image via StyleMePretty | Photography by Our Labor of Love

Image via StyleMePretty | Photography by Our Labor of Love

Not only was it very romantic, sunset for our wedding day was predicted at 6:49pm which was just perfect as it was on the clock’s upswing.

Years ago a bride-to-be come into the shop to order her invitations and Mama Leadfoot commented on the very precise time she had written into her wording. It wasn’t just “half past two” or “two thirty in the afternoon” but two thirty-ONE in the afternoon. She explained that her daddy was the luckiest person she ever met and he said getting married while the clock was on an upswing was lucky, so that’s what she was gonna do!

While I’m not overly superstitious, I do think that doing little things like this certainly can’t hurt. For me it’s more about going in with the right intentions and the right mindset, and the clock being on an upswing is a physical reminder of those good intentions.

According to a little bit of Internet research, the clock-upswing superstition is common in China, but seems to have filtered throughout the various cultures. And while the notion seems to focus more on the minute hand, I figured if one hand going up was good, then both would be double-good!

When we switched our wedding from sunset to mid-morning, it became a matter of deciding how early was too early. Neither of the Road Trips are the cheeriest morning people, so too early wasn’t a great idea, not to mention asking our guests to be up bright and early wouldn’t be the most hospitable thing. Mid-morning seemed like a good idea, but we also knew that most of our guests would be driving about 45 minutes to get to our venue, which could make an even a mid-morning start a bit touchy.

Good thing we were already thinking it’d be fun to have the cocktail hour before the ceremony, so that gives us some wiggle room if people aren’t really up and moving as early as need be. (Not to mention gives us plenty of time to get ready in the morning without having to get up at the crack of dawn.) And since I never had any intention of hiding away in some bridal lounge before the ceremony, it also gives us plenty of time to greet our guests, take some photos, and generally make merry before the ceremony.

How did you determine the timing of your wedding?