OK, I know most normal people have their children get married well before they retire. But since when have we ever been normal?
Our daughter was married last weekend at the Homestead Resort in Midway. I confess – having a big party was my idea. We have only one daughter, and she’s having only one wedding (at least, only one that we’re paying for), and we’d had the money saved for over 20 years, so why not?
As soon as the engagement ring was on her finger, we began planning. About three weeks into checking into venues, we decided that we were in the wrong business. Weddings are quite pricey – particularly if you want the venue to do most of the work, which we did. We settled on the Homestead because the price was reasonable, the location beautiful, and the wedding planner, Jamie, was both personable and extremely well organized.
Then it was time to pick a dress. We visited several bridal shops and found just the perfect one. I tried on a couple of dresses as well. Good thing I didn’t buy one because they were a lot more formal than the wedding turned out to be.
Our daughter did most of the planning and arranging for the rest of the details. With her Excel spreadsheet in hand, she showed us the plans for decorations. She hired a photographer and a Photo Bus for the reception. The spreadsheet details were pretty much between her and her dad.
I got to do the good stuff. I attended one of the four bridal showers she was given. We got pedicures together so our toenails would match at the wedding. I spent the night before the wedding with her at the Homestead, where we went through the last minute details and then just relaxed. It was all taken care of.
On the day of the wedding, I was a permanent fixture in the Bride’s Room. We both got our makeup done, which was somewhat amusing. Not only had I never worn false eyelashes, I had never used an eyelash curler! Everyone laughed. We drank champagne. I helped her with her dress. And from the time she walked down the aisle to the final sendoff, everything was perfect. Even the following day’s “trash the dress” event, where she and her new husband jumped into the Homestead Crater – in their wedding attire – was beautiful and fun.
The most amazing thing for me to witness was all the support she received from her friends and co-workers. Her former roommate did our makeup. Her current supervisor did her hair. Her close friends prepared a book for her to open the day of the wedding, and were all there in the Bride’s Room drinking champagne with us. A sorority sister did all the decorating. Several of her sorority sisters came to the reception, each bringing her a red rose. Nearly everyone we invited came. She is well loved by her family and friends, and of course, by her new husband.
Congratulations to the newlyweds from the overflowing heart of the mother of the bride.
By the way, did you know it costs $70 to dry clean a wedding dress?