About a month ago, I posted about wedding prep. Well, the big day has come and gone! It definitely seems to have just flown by. I’m going to try not to ramble on too much here so as not to bore you to death.
My mom (along with an aunt and an uncle) arrived in France a few days before the wedding, and we spent a few days exploring the area with her as it was her first time in France. More on those adventures another time.
We also had some friends that made the trip down including two very dear friends that I haven’t seen in about three years.
First off, I want to say that we couldn’t have done this without the help of J’s parents. They practically organized everything which was such a blessing as we’re not anywhere near the town.
Our other goal was to keep everything simple. We did a lot of the decorations ourselves and with the help of friends and family. I didn’t see myself in a fancy white dress (actually, one of the criteria for the dress was that I could use the restroom by myself). I chose a simple off-white dress from Modcloth. As it was super hot, not having a big dress was definitely a good thing even though I still felt like I was melting most of the day and night.
With the help of them and many of J’s family members, we spent the Friday evening decorating the room for the reception. I didn’t really have expectations, but the finished product definitely surpassed what I thought it would be. We had a big huge barbecue after all the hard work.
Saturday morning, I was up and off to get my hair done followed by makeup straight after lunch. Then, it was time to get dressed and settle on jewelry. I didn’t really have times to let any nerves set in, probably for the best.
We did pictures in a pretty spot by the river first while we were looking our freshest. My “temoine’s” boyfriend takes amazing photos and has access to professional equipment, and he graciously offered to take photos all night. We’ve seen most of the unedited photos, and they are so beautiful!
We did just the required civil ceremony. Unlike most French marriages, ours was not at the town hall, we had special permission from the Prefecture to have it in another of the town’s rooms, because it’s main entrance doesn’t have stairs, and J’s grandmother just had surgery and is unable to go up or down a lot of stairs.
The ceremony went by quickly with some of the mayor’s personal anecdotes from knowing J and his mom. I tried so so hard not to laugh during the reading of the laws about marriage. I did pretty well. And I said “Oui” at the correct moment. J’s goddaughter was the ring bearer. She was super unsure of what was going on, but she was so adorable.
After the ceremony, we had the vin d’honneur and the dinner/reception and tried very very hard not to pass out from the heat. We did a cold spread for dinner which turned out to be a great decision due to the heat. Everyone was able to eat something since it was refreshing. And of course, we had the mandatory cheese course with cheese from the local region and the North!
Our American style wedding cake (or cakes, I should say – the baker overestimated by far the quantity and made two) seemed to be a hit among all the nationalities (we had 5, I think!).
I was confused when people started to leave but were telling me that they’d see me the next day. Well, everyone forgot to mention to me that another tradition was eating lunch together the next day! Sure enough, we had about 30 people eating lunch with us on Sunday and helping to clean up the place.
Now, what I’m sure everyone is waiting for (and possibly skimmed over the post for)…. pictures!
**Note: There are only pictures of us, because I haven’t asked anyone else if I can publish their photo in a public place. Also, thanks to various friends and family members for these photos!
The reception – Decorations
Hair and makeup done!
Pictures by the river in Bourguignon
Exchanging rings during the ceremony
A beautiful picture of J’s goddaughter with the rings (published here only b/c you can’t see her face)
Meeting up with Elliot for the first time after the ceremony. And yes, he was there for that 🙂
My bouquet which I’m still in love with.
The huge American style cake(s)! They sure were delicious even if they’re a little lopsided (we had to put them together as the baker wasn’t sure how to transport them otherwise)! We also did the American tradition of freezing the top layer to eat on our first anniversary. And as you can tell by the date on the photo, we didn’t cut it until long after midnight.
And there you have it! Our Franco-American wedding!
If you’re married to someone of another nationality, did you share your traditions during the wedding? Or what are some traditions you want to keep going for your wedding?