Twelve years ago today, my dear Oldtimer, my two daughters and I climbed into my new blue Rodeo (named Daphne), and headed for the Linden Hills neighborhood of Minneapolis. On the way, we stopped at my favorite florist and picked up a box of boutonnieres, a metal tub arrangement of stargazer lilies, three bouquets tied with love knots, and a huge grapevine wreath with live plants and flowers intertwined.
It was a bright and clear day, though the banks of snow at the curb were still huge, even by Minneapolis standards. We made our way to Turtle Bread, parked the car, and hauled in the goods; lined up our favorite music, made some requests of the staff, and waited for our guests to arrive. All the friends and rellies that showed got a flower to wear, keeping them from paying for any sandwich, drink, or dessert they might want - after the wedding ceremony.
We watched in horror as Pam Sherman herself pounded a huge stake in the beautiful French country corner cupboard and hung our wreath. We began greeting the early arrivals, pinned on the flowers, circulated, encouraged, and then Gretchen Thompson, a beautiful UU minister, performed our ceremony. We recorded the whole thing, and you can hear the cash register ringing in the background. The final words on the tape of our vows are Gretchen declaring us married, Oldtimer's statement of "Good, let's eat!" and my daughter Bekah saying "Smart ass!" That's the end of the tape of our wedding.
It was a great, relaxed, fun way to get married. We enjoyed it all and got to visit with our nearest and dearest. I still make a trek to Turtle Bread with every visit to Minneapolis, I miss it so. What a wonderful place!
Since our wedding, we've seen an extraordinary amount of change in our lives - from location to employment to number of family members. We've often mourned that we didn't meet when we were younger so we'd have more time together, but the truth is that we've packed a whole lot of living into those 12 years. I wouldn't change a thing. (Well, except for climate, perhaps...)
Sorry the photo isn't better. It's my favorite from that day, but it's always been grainy. Perhaps I can find some of the others...