Part Three: The Reception
I really wanted to have a dance. I found an elementary school / community center where we could do it about 15 miles from the chapel. We ate and danced in the dining hall. The lights and colored hardwood floors were really fun, and there was plenty of room for people to sit and eat, stand and mingle, or dance. My favorite part? The children’s art that lined the hallways.
We couldn’t do a slideshow, so I made photo trees. I scanned a bunch of photos of LT and I growing up. Then I printed them at Walmart, cut them up, and my personal assistants punched holes and added the ribbon. They really should have been paid for all the work they did. I am so grateful to them!
Here’s the centerpiece for the head table. I bought decorations that I would be able to use in our new home together. The vase was $20 clearance at JC Penney’s. Filling the vase are the fresh anemones that I had originally planned to use for our bouquets. I am actually really happy I ended up using fake flowers (see my bouquet at left). All the candles are in our home now.
After a yummy lasagna meal, I got to cut the cake with LT’s saber, a Marine Corps tradition. Our cake was carrot with a cream cheese frosting. Everybody else got a marble sheet cake made, cut up, and served by the caterers. The carrot cake was AMAZING. I am pretty upset nobody saved another piece for LT and I!
Unfortunately I don’t have any photos of the centerpieces for the guest tables. On each table was a white tablecloth. In the center was a black “puddle” of fabric, on top of which we’d scattered black river stones and white glass stones. In the middle of the black fabric was a clear plastic square plate (check the party section) with tea lights and mason jars. The fabric and mason jars were reused from my matron of honor’s August wedding. Favors were three jingle bells from Michael’s tied with ribbon with a tag that had LT’s and my name on it, with our wedding date (yes, I altered the photo for privacy’s sake). Guests could jingle the bells to make us kiss, and could take them home as Christmas ornaments.
I hated the thought of buying a pretty guestbook only to have the first two pages filled with names like an impersonal roll call. Instead, I bought a scrapbook and put a page at every table along with a box of crayons. People could be more creative and have fun while waiting for their food. We got a sweet note or a doodle from everybody. After the usual (husband, dress, ring, bouquet), this is my favorite keepsake of the wedding.
After dinner, dancing, and dessert, I tossed the bouquet and LT and I made our escape to the Saint Paul Hotel, where we stayed a few days before we packed up all my belongings and made the move to NC. I think you know what happened next.