wedding #1 Dos:
1. Know what your main goal is and let everything else go
2. Pinterest! It works everywhere
3. Make it kid friendly--we really like kids
3. If you can pull off a wedding in another country using only public transportation, you rock
4. Put your personal touch on things that can be prepared on things in advance, like invites and programs--not last minute decor
5. Make sure to have lots of amazing people to help out early and stay late, because you always need it
wedding #1 Don'ts:
1. Forget to have a wedding rehearsal
2. Get upset at anyone for any reason--broken relationships are worse than anything "wrong" with your wedding
3. Have many different parts to your wedding that everyone needs to participate in--they like doing their own thing
4. Forget to pack for the honeymoon last minute/grab your stuff right as you leave
5. Be afraid to ask people to lead/head things up directly
And wedding #2 was amazing as well
Wedding #2 Dos:
1. Invite everyone--they won't all show up
2. Use the internet! So many ideas and free templates to steal from.
3. Do as much as possible beforehand
4. Know you won't get to talk to everyone who comes as much/as deeply as you want to (face it--weddings are not for good heart-to-heart convos)
5. A Father/daughter dance--one of my favorite things ever!
6. Plan/get people to lead fun dances EVERYONE can do--Limbo, chicken dance, Cha cha slide, Cupid Shuffle, Twist...
7. Pinata. Enough said.
Wedding #2 Don'ts:
1. Stress the small stuff. And in the end, it is all small stuff
2. Forget to practice putting on the rings
3. Forget to be nice to your husband and make sure he gets fed
4. Get the Cotton Candy Machine without the extra guard thing
5. Have old sparklers that don't end up working
What impressed me the most about getting married (well, aside from making the biggest decision of my life) was the impressions it gave others. I will never forget little Iasmim in Brazil, who lives at the trash dump, staring at me, frozen, with a look that could not be satisfied: I was beautiful, and she didn't have much beauty in her life. It was as if seeing me was giving her something. The Living Stones children reaching out to touch me, to be next to me, to be a part of this wedding "show."
And that is what it is. We put on a show to remember, establish, and confirm this inanimate decision of giving our hearts and lives to another person. We invite those we care about to be a part of it. We invite children to show them what it looks like. I remember my cousins getting married. Every wedding created a longing in me, an excitement--when will it be my turn to be the star? To be the beautiful one everyone stands up for when she comes down the aisle? When will I have a man looking at me like THAT--committing his lifelong devotion to me?
I received the best RSVP from one of my kids, who is no longer a kid: "it's time to see my friend live out the example she bestowed upon me when I was just 10 years old, and for that I thank you, that you preached about it so many times. It's one thing to tell someone to do the right thing, but to actually live it out exactly how God planed is a blessing to me and I am truly grateful..... now GO TIE THAT KNOT!"
I had told her it was possible to wait on God and do the married thing right...that it was worth it--and then she watched it happen (finally, TEN years later). I saw one of the little boys who came to our wedding at church later. He couldn't stop looking at me. In his eyes I read, "That was the bride! The star! And she is here...and so...normal."
They are watching. They are figuring things out. And from their perceptions of what works and doesn't work, they will make the decisions that will shape their lives. Geez, that is the scary beautiful part about working with kids.