Wedding Day

 

How to organize a perfect wedding

For the actual wedding day there are several things you should plan to accomplish. Your goal is to remain calm and direct the troops as they are going ashore at Normandy—D-day is here. A friend of mine, Brigette Polmar from wed our way wedding organizer, offered several excellent suggestions that I have taken to heart and intend to accomplish on my daughter’s wedding day. Here they are only slightly altered.
1. Father of the Bride, buy the Mother of the Bride a gift and give it to her privately the day of the wedding. Jewelry is preferable, but isn’t it always? Although “Here” may be our standard presentation speech, it won’t suffice in this case. Deliver the gift along with some kind words of thanks for raising a wonderful daughter or a sweet memory of your own wedding day.

2. At weddings everyone wants to help, but few know what to do. This, unfortunately, can lead to a gaggle of people (usually women and children) to form a “what can I do for you” circle around the poor bride, drowning her in requests and pleadings. This is where you can be particularly helpful. Work with the maid of honor or wedding planner to set up a protective barrier around the bride (something the bride should know nothing about). Dad, head off those well-meaning friends and family at the pass. Be armed with a list of little duties. You may want to say something like “Sally is so glad that you’re here and so am I. It means the world to us on this exciting day. Do you think you could make sure there are three candles on each table? I just haven’t had the time and I don’t want to bother Sally with that. Could I just put you in charge of that?” This works well with children who are drawn to brides like Cindarella at Disney World. Once they’ve completed a task, they tire of the exercise and go play by themselves. Some other send them away tasks:

“Hey, Bob, I don’t think Sally can talk right now, but I really need someone to watch the gift table and card basket. We wouldn’t want anything walking off and it would really take a lot off my mind if you could be in charge of that.”

“Hey, Billy, a lot of the younger kids may not understand how important this big day is and may get a little bored. You’re a big kid. Could you help keep them busy? I think the little girls really like ring-around-the-rosie.”

3. Your daughter may not realize it, but her walk down the aisle as a bride may be the last steps she takes with your last name. Find a moment or write a simple note to tell her how she carried your family name with grace and charm and made you proud. Thank her for being the wonderful woman she is and tell her how lucky her new family is to have her carry their name.

4. Often that special moment between father and daughter is missed in the flurry of wedding day activity. If you insist on nothing else – and you should insist on very little – insist that you get that 60 seconds for a special word or two or at least a long hug – one-on-one – father-to-daughter. (P.S. Even if you don’t believe your relationship with your daughter is close, have the moment anyway. That moment will grow in value as the years go by. And you only get one shot!)

5. No matter how much you can’t stand him, on the day of the wedding (or at any wedding event) don’t speak an ill word about your soon-to-be son-in-law. It will only backfire on you. A simple dodge: “We’re just so happy that Sally is happy today.”

 

6. Don’t ask your daughter to have a wedding just like another sibling’s. In fact, don’t draw any parallels between your children’s weddings. Just like them, each one is unique and special. There are no cookie cutter kids and you shouldn’t expect cookie cutter weddings.

7. Don’t wing it at the father/daughter dance. Lead your daughter – it’s your last chance. If you can’t dance, take lessons, surprise your wife and daughter. And have something to say. It’s hard to come up with something touching when everyone is looking at you and your counting out the waltz. Try something schmaltzy like: “This reminds me of dancing with the other most beautiful woman in the world, you’re mother.” Or “This moment is more than I could have asked for. You have made me so proud today.” Or “He’s a lucky guy, but you’ll always be my little girl and I can’t imagine loving you any more than I do right at this moment.”

8. The spotlight may be on your little girl, but don’t forget you’re the master of ceremonies. These are your friends and family, too. Weddings are chaotic. Work with the wedding planner or maid of honor to make sure you’re helping to lead the night from one special moment to the next.

Getting married abroad can be a mission impossible on its own. For whatever reason (maybe financial reasons) you should never ever try to save money on a wedding planner. With him or her, your wedding could be a total mess and a complete disaster.
I want to thank Brigette for her excellent suggestions for the Father of the Bride. If you have any suggestions/tips, please send them in. And we would like to wish Lucy and Ethel a big big good luck for their future married life. May god bless them and give them an abundance of happiness, joy and laughter.

Butter Cream Biscuits Recipe

Yummy to the tummy….

Buttermilk Biscuits

2 cups self-rising flour
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, cold (!!), cut into very small chunks
1 cup buttermilk

Butter Cream Biscuits

1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees.
2. Sift dry ingredients together in a large bowl.
3. “Snap” the butter into your flour mixture.  Literally pick up the small chunks of flour covered butter and snap them between your fingers.  This will flatten each little piece of butter but keep the butter “in tact” so you will be able to taste it in your biscuits.  Don’t try to cream the butter into your dough.  You can see the butter in my dough in the picture above.
4. Add buttermilk until it’s just combined.  Do not over mix.  Dough should be very sticky.
5. Turn dough out onto a floured dough board and gently press it to 1/2″ thick.  Do not use rolling pin.  It should be lumpy and bumpy!  Fold the dough in half and gently press it together again (don’t press together too much…that “fold” is what makes them easy to split open once they’re baked!).  Fold it in half one of more time and press it out to 1″ thick.
6. Using a biscuit cutter, cut into rounds.
7. You can use the scraps but they will not be nearly as good as the original biscuits.
8. Place biscuits on a cookie sheet- if you want soft sides and “taller” biscuits, make all of the sides touch on the baking sheet.  If you want “crunchy” edges, don’t let them touch.
9. Bake approximately 10 minutes until golden brown.

Home is where the heart is

I obviously baked mine without the sides touching which is why they aren’t as tall as you’re probably used to seeing them.  The insides are still incredibly fluffy and perfect, they just have a nice “crust” on the outside which I personally love.

I love biscuits and honey…especially this honey from the Blue Ridge Mountains.  I swear the taste better if the honey is dripping down between your fingers.

Some people swear that White Lily flour is far superior to any other type of flour…it’s all I’ve ever used because that’s what my grandma uses.  It’s what I grab when I’m at the grocery store just like people who prefer Heinz over Hunts…or Duke’s (or Blue Plate!) over Kraft. Whether it’s really better…well, you be the judge of that. 🙂

ETA: There was a question about using self-rising flour opposed to the all-purpose flour I had originally listed in the recipe.  I used self-rising which is what I pretty much use for everything.  I have a special seasoned flour I use to frying things so nearly everything else I bake would only benefit from the leavening and salt in the self-rising flour.   Sorry for the confusion. 😉

Busy Wedding Planning

So..it’s been a little while.  December is such a crazy month.  I know it is for everyone.  On top of the holidays, it’s my busiest month for work so I decided that I would put off wedding planning until January.  I think before we were engaged, I expected that I would love wedding planning.  I have always loved looking at pictures of other weddings so why wouldn’t I love planning our own?  Well.  Hah!  First of all there is that little thing called a budget.  I would suspect that wedding planning is a breeze is you have an unlimited budget but we do not. And then I’ve found myself really just not caring about a lot of stuff.  I’ve asked Todd approximately 15 times if we can just elope.  I even found a great elopement package at the Old Edwards Inn but he wasn’t having any of that so onward we will go.

I’m a pretty decisive person- I know what I like, I pick it and then move on to the next thing so I’ve got a great deal of the wedding details already planned out in my head.  We are going to look at the venue at the end of the month and hopefully pick a date while we are there.  I haven’t decided how much I will share beforehand but I will tell you, we’ve got about 10 months to plan, and it will be in a state that neither of us are from.  THAT I am excited about!  I’ve already picked out bridesmaids dresses (although I haven’t formally asked my bridesmaids yet) and their gifts, all of my accessories, and the reception and ceremony decor.  I’ve contacted a caterer with menu ideas and requested a proposal and requested a proof for invitations.

There are certain things though that have made me roll my eyes.  I found invitations that I liked online so I requested a sample.  Then the next day I went into a local paper store to see what they had- I like to shop at local stores so if they had something and their prices are good, I’d go with them.  Well, as I was going through the details with the girl in the shop I asked her “can’t I just put our wedding website on the invitation?” She about fell out of her chair.  I mean REALLY.  You want me to pay an extra $1.50 for an enclosure card just for a website? That’s almost an extra $200 for a 2 inch piece of paper.  “Well, you want your invitations to be timeless.”  Listen sister.  It’s going to hang on someone’s fridge for a few months and then it’s going in the trash.  We might have a picture of it in an album somewhere and we might look at it a total of 4 times in the next 30 years.  And is the internet going somewhere? Are URLs going to be outdated?  Maybe I should get one of those little scanny squares instead and then they can just scan it with their phone to find out wedding details.  I’m just going to apologize ahead of time, if you get an invite and it has a URL on it, I’m sorry for being so tacky.

I’ve been emailing back and forth with my friend Kristen a bunch and one thing she told me that has really stuck is “no one is going to care about the chairs, napkins, and china.  Just get a pretty dress and a great photographer.”  It seems so obvious but when you get sucked into the wedding monster, it’s easy to forget.   The last wedding Todd and I went to was in Asheville- I cannot tell you what the napkins looked like, I can’t remember whether they had white chairs, gold chivari chairs, or if they used real china.  I remember that their venue was beautiful, the bride was stunning, and they had like 6 different kinds of really, really good cakes.

If I disappear for a few weeks, it’s because Todd finally gave into my elopement pressure.