Wow, so where do I start?
I guess I will make this first post about the week leading up to the wedding. I have a few photos for the first pre-wedding dinner with Macsen's family, but unfortunately the photos for the second dinner the night before the wedding were all erased (they were my favorites too, I nearly cried). However, it seems that the digital memory card has been having problems and we could view them all on someone else's Fujifilm digital camera. It appears they are actually still on the card, but for some reason my camera won't acknowledge their presence (maybe they had a heated argument or something, I don't know). I will post them if I ever succeed in downloading them.
It's funny because little of this post will make sense or mean much to just about everybody reading my journal... but at least it's a record for us and those close to us (and anybody else interested).
August 4th, Sunday
Macsen arrived at about 10:00pm. It was such a strange and exhilarating feeling when we saw each other for the first time knowing that we were to be married, it had been over 5 months since he was last here. I felt like I had been planning the wedding basically alone for the past few months. I wondered about how we've both changed in half a year and worried that perhaps feelings might have changed. Our time spent together that night reassured us that we were still fully in love, even more so.
Macsen, Gael, and I had a walk through Chetzemoka Park with Emily to test the accoustics for her violin. We decided she would be standing to the left of the gazebo entrance so that everyone could see her and we could hear her from the rose arbor where I would be making my entrance. We then went to the Palindrome where our reception was being held to figure out decorations.
We met with our officiator, Peggy Albers. Alix recommended her to me after seeing her officiate another wedding. I am so happy she did because Peggy was very easy-going, friendly, and she said the one thing she absolutely refuses to do is include the word "obey" in any vows (I'm sure Macsen was disappointed). She also wasn't strictly religious, which was a relief and a requirement for us. We finalized our vows and went over ceremony details with her until we were all satisfied.
That night we had dinner with our friends and wedding caterers Efra, David, and Nate at our house. They cooked polenta with fontina cheese and a portobello mushroom sauce, prawns in garlic butter, and I fixed a mixed green salad. We spent a few good hours or so deciding on the final wedding menu.
Macsen, Nate, and David
Efra, David, Nate, and Macsen
polenta and fontina with portobello sauce, garlic butter prawns, mixed green salad
Macsen and I drove to Cicada in Seattle to pick up my wedding dress and shoes. The dress fit me like a glove, I was pleased with the customization the seamstresses had done. After Cicada we drove to Kirkland because I had $50 credit at a bridal shop there called La Belle Mariée (I had a dress on hold there before I found and fell in love with the one at Cicada). I bought an ivory-colored garter with $30 of the credit and just as we were leaving I remembered I wanted to call my friend Steve to try to meet him for lunch. I gave him a call at work, but he had a high workload that day and unfortunately wasn't able to escape. It wasn't until we arrived back in Port Townsend that evening that I realized I had stupidly left my garter at the bridal shop when I called Steve. I called them the next morning and asked if they could FedEx it to us. The woman said they would and she assured me it would arrive before the wedding.
Macsen's friends and family arrived from England and France. His parents Philip and Jackie, his godmother Sandra, his French uncle Jean-Pierre and his wife Dede, friends John and Vadna and their 19 year-old son James. Apparently they all had a terrible time with customs and immigration in Chicago, which almost resulted in them missing their plane to Seattle and Jackie nearly losing the wedding rings. Fortunately they all made it, albeit jet lagged. They had all reserved a beautiful converted church in Port Hadlock to stay in, about a 15 minute drive out of town.
After they left to drop their bags off at The Church Macsen and I went to the courthouse to get our marriage certificate. Then our friend and dance teacher, Pete Gillis, dropped by to give Macsen and I a brief waltz lesson. I'm hopeless when it comes to remembering dance steps, but I was able to maintain a decent frame. We weren't sure if we'd be confident enough with it to try it on the wedding day without more practice, but it was fun to learn and Pete is always an entertaining character (and a bit larger than life in personality).
That evening Macsen, Gael, Alix, and I drove out to The Church for dinner with Macsen's family. When we arrived they had us open all the wedding cards from the family and friends in Europe, including a gorgeous custom-made card from Philip and Jackie. The Church had a fantasticly huge back yard with a few apple trees so they set up the dining table outside. Jackie and Jean-Pierre had cooked bbq'ed salmon, cucumber and tomato salad, and baked potatoes. I loved spending time getting to know John, Vadna, and James as it was the first time I had met them. Philip had met Vadna many years ago when he worked on the police force and she was a lecturer. They hit it off because Philip stood out from the rest of the police force (he was intelligent, funny, and quick-witted ;). Vadna is a beautiful Guyanese woman and she was originally going to wear traditional Guyanese dress at the wedding, but ended up not doing so in the end (too bad, I was excited to see it. She looked great anyway). I was excited for Gael to meet Macsen's family, especially Jean-Pierre, who is a truly wonderful man and very funny, even though he speaks no English. Jean-Pierre transcends language.
John, Macsen camera dodging, Gael, and Alix
Sandra, Vadna also camera dodging, James, Dede, and Jean-Pierre
Dede, Jean-Pierre, and Jackie
Family & food!
That evening another family friend from England, Andrew Clark, arrived at The Church. I hadn't met him before either (although I recognized his name as the first person who bought us a gift on our online registry). He was a lot of fun to have around, I am so pleased he flew over.
We had a 2 hour lunch at the Tyler St. coffeehouse, met with Peggy again, and my father drove down from Anacortes to help out. Macsen's family took a little trip to the Olympic Mountains to check out Hurricane Ridge, which they said was fantastic.
I cannot remember most of what happened that day. It's also left blank on my calendar, which is bizarre considering every other August square on my calendar is filled with little scribbles of meetings, events, etc. except for that day. Maybe there was a time warp and parts of Friday never actually happenened? What the hell?!
My family began arriving from all over Washington State. Most of them spent the day exploring the area or resting. Macsen and I socialized with them inbetween running last-minute errands. Dad and Gael started work on all the favors, which were blackberry and raspberry candies wrapped in tulle and tied with a pale green ribbon with "Naomi and Macsen August 11, 2002" printed on them. We weren't planning on getting anything printed, but it was only $12 for 100 printed ribbons at a stationary shop downtown. I'm happy we did it now since a lot of people kept the ribbons.
Macsen's family planned a big dinner at The Church for close family. Dad, Gael, Mom, Macsen and I went. All of my grandparents were either too tired to attend or hadn't arrived yet. It was good fun, with a copious amount of wine and Vadna's excellent traditional Guyanese spiced steak. Andrew had bought a cowboy hat and looked convincingly Texan until he opened his mouth and a thick English accent emerged. Then Jean-Pierre took to dancing like Elvis. It was an eventful night.
At the end of the night I prepared to leave with my parents because Macsen was going to stay the night at The Church, since it was the night before the wedding. It felt very unnatural to be seperated from Macsen right at the time that I wanted him as close as possible. We had both previously agreed that this was what we wanted to do and I am glad now that we stuck with it. Everyone gave us hugs and kisses, the mood happy and slightly intense in the knowledge that the next morning was the big day.
I will write about the wedding itself next week! :)