So this morning after Mass, we had my folks and my brother over for a little brunch. It was such a beautiful day - just like the day of our wedding - bright and cool with the foliage at its peak. Celebrating with food, family and fond memories was such a nice way to celebrate our special day ... I'd like to share a few pictures with you, and a few flashbacks as well ...
In the front window I set up a collage frame filled with wedding day pictures, our anniversary cards and the flowers Bill gave me this morning. (Very pretty flowers for sure - but they are now sitting on the front steps since the cats find them absolutely delectable.)
And on the kitchen island, my go-to buffet surface, I spread out the brunch goodies ...
Oh my goodness ... this quiche. SO delicious!
It's called a "cheeseburger quiche" and if anyone would like the recipe I'd be happy to post it - it was easy to make, and so very tasty!
I have to point out the flowers barely visible in the background of the above picture. These are hydrangeas from our front garden ... full, lush and perfectly purple and green. How I love hydrangeas!
In fact, I will always think of hydrangeas as our wedding flower. We had a really wonderful florist - he had recently opened a nursery in a nearby town and we were quite taken by his natural, seasonal, "earthy" arrangements. We were only his second or third wedding, but he came highly recommended. Best of all, when we described our dream of a very "autumnal" wedding - pumpkins, bittersweet, kale and the like - he was right on board! For the bridesmaids' bouquets he suggested hydrangeas because they really are the star of the fall garden. So I spent the weeks leading up to our wedding studying (sort of stalking, really) neighborhood hydrangeas - observing how they were changing in hue. By October 23rd they looked something like this ...
And they really made a beautiful bouquet, mingled with other complimentary flowers (autumn roses, etc.).
Back to the buffet though, the menu also included ...
And just for fun ...
... a few dishes of seasonal candy. :)
For liquid refreshment ...
Sparkling cider - straight apple, and apple-cranberry. This is what we served for our wedding toast, and it's nice because not only does it taste lovely, but it is free of alcohol so everyone can enjoy a sip or more. :)
Now, I don't have our wedding photos scanned in, but I thought I'd share a few of the pictures from that collage shown above. When I look back at these photos I know why our parents and grandparents all called us "the kids" - we looked so young!
And I guess we were. :)
Bill and I are on either end of this picture - our "scarecrow selves" are in the middle! My mother-in-law made these fantastic creations - they stood outside the reception hall and as guests came up the long winding drive, they saw the "bride and groom" welcoming them in all their autumn finery. More than one guest thought - from a distance - it was actually us!
Here I am with my dad on our way to the church ...
His good friend Skip did us the great honor of driving us on this day in his gorgeous, vintage car. Wish I had an exterior shot to show you - it made quite the set of "wedding wheels!"
The gazebo at my folks' - also decked out in autumn regalia.
Here we are with our grandparents: on the left, are my Grampy and Bill's Grammie, and on the right stand my Grama and Grampa (who became "Damee and Pa" to our boys). All of them are gone now ... though sometimes that doesn't seem real. I miss them all every day.
It's hard to see in this shot, but this is the wedding party table, and it seems this was the "toast moment." Directly behind me stand the maid of honor and best man, Sabina and John, our best friends from high school. On the left are my dear friends - college roommate, Kathy and cousin, Amy. And there are those aforementioned pumpkins and bittersweet!
Here are the remaining bridesmaids:
Unfortunately, the picture slid off center - but on the left are Amy and Kathy again, and to my right is Sabina, my cousin Kate and sister-in-law Ami, and in front is my cousin Kara - our sweet little flower girl!
Now this next picture is quite fuzzy and at first glance it might seem like nothing much is going on at all, but for me it will always be one of those unforgettable wedding moments ...
What we have here is me in the middle with my two friends (and editors) from the paper where I worked at that time. The formal pictures were done and we were trying to tie up my bustle before heading into the reception. But oh my gosh, we just could NOT get that darn thing to cooperate! And oh, how we laughed ... we just laughed ourselves silly, hiding behind the hedges, fighting with that blasted bustle. Betsy and Martha kept me calm and in good spirits and yes - we did finally get that bustle to behave itself!
And now here we have the wedding cake ...
... garnished with a garland of autumn leaves. It was a delicious carrot cake with a soft cream cheese frosting. For brunch today I had planned to make a triple layer carrot cake, but at 7 a.m. it was either take a shower or bake a cake before church ...
Needless to say, I went with the shower and promised the boys I'd make our "family birthday cake" sometime this week. :)
Now, for a few bits of random wedding trivia:
Our favors were Yankee Candle "Spiced Pumpkin" votive candles.
Our wedding party was introduced to the theme from "Northern Exposure" because it was our absolute favorite TV show at the time (of all time, really).
We went to Colonial Williamsburg for our honeymoon. We drove there in Bill's old Saab ...
... the streamers and cans only lasted a mile. ;)
Well, we may not look like "kids" anymore - and we have a few of our own now - but I wouldn't trade one wrinkle or gray hair for even one precious moment of the last 18 years ...
Honey, I love you. I hope and pray our next 18 years are as blessed!
Dear readers, thank you for allowing me this rather long and rambly bit of reminiscing ... it was a lovely indulgence, to spend a few hours this afternoon remembering this special day and all the wonderful people who helped us make it so.
So I'll wrap up now and be off ... but I'll be back next time with a post on my holiday planner ... that was one of my many plans for the weekend but, well, let me be frank: not many things on that list got accomplished this weekend! (I tend to wear rose-tinted glasses when it comes to making up weekend to-do lists, lol.) I will post about my planner sometime this week - hopefully tomorrow but certainly as soon as I can.
Have a great night, my friends ... and as always, thank you so much for stopping by.