hankrules2011

A polymath rambling about virtually anything

Posts Tagged ‘wedding’

Our Wedding and Honeymoon

Posted by Scott Holstad on April 14, 2013

Gretchen and I got married last Saturday, April 6th. It was beautiful out — a perfect day for a wedding. Our wedding was at 5 PM at our tiny Episcopalian church we attend. My father was my best man. Gretchen’s best friend, Cindy, was her matron of honor. We had invited about 22 people to attend. It was a small, intimate gathering.

With the organist playing from Handel’s Water Music, we processed down the aisle and then it was Gretchen’s turn to be walked down the aisle by her father. She looked lovely. It was great to see the faces of friends we hadn’t seen in years out there. We had a ceremony that lasted about 25 minutes, and it was wonderful. Nearly perfect. We each said, “I will” instead of “I do,” per the rector. Afterwards, we stayed for some photographs and then proceeded on to the Mayor’s Mansion for the reception. It was lovely. We had a bar with Merlot, Pinot Grigio, and Reisling. We also had coffee and tea. We all mingled for a bit, while they played the wedding mix I had prepared — Tony Bennett, Frank Sinatra, Mozart, before later kicking it into gear with the Bee Gees and KC & the Sunshine Band and Queen and the Moody Blues, etc., et al. The food was Italian, and it was arrayed beautifully in buffet format. It sure didn’t look like your typical buffet. Somewhere along the way, we ran out of wine and had to order more. Lushes — hah! Dinner was fantastic and we had a good time talking with people. Then it was time for the champagne toast, and my father gave a really excellent toast. It was very moving. Then cake cutting time. We had a simple two layer cake which looked lovely and we fed each other a piece. We’re not into smashing each other with cake. Gradually people started leaving, and we said our goodbyes sadly, knowing we wouldn’t see some of these people for a long time. Still, some long distance friends said they’d be coming back, so that’s cool. It was a wonderful reception, and I want to give a shout out to the people who were there: our parents — both of us — and Gretchen’s two sons, Sean and Jeremy (and Sean’s girlfriend, Katie). Gretchen’s friends Linda and Bob came down from Maryland. My friends Arnold and Little Amy came separately from Knoxville. Chris D and his wife Steph came from Virginia. Ami I came from Asheville NC. My friend Rachel came all the way from Seattle, which was a pretty long distance to come. Kudos and thanks to her. (She took lots of good pics too. Thanks Rachel!) We also had local church friends Dee and Kelly there. It was nice.

We spent the night there, as it is a posh B&B. Gretchen’s dad put us up there, which was nice of him, especially since he took care of the reception. We had a lovely night and ate a nice, lite breakfast with her parents the next morning before going home to prepare for our honeymoon.

On Monday, we left Chattanooga for the beach at Gulf Shores, AL. We had a fantastic honeymoon and with the exception of one day, the weather was perfect. The ocean and beach were beautiful. We stayed in a large condo at the Beach Club in Gulf Shores. Aside from the fact that one of their restaurants and their little store were closed for renovation, it was quite nice. Since it was a private beach, it wasn’t crowded and the pools were great, as were the hot tubs.

After spending time at the beach Monday and Tuesday, we drove over to Pensacola FL on Wednesday. We immediately went to McGuire’s Irish Pub, which we had heard about. The food was delicious — the second best fish and chips I’ve ever had, after Santa Monica’s Kings Head Pub. We then went to the beach at Pensacola, mostly to say that we went to the beach in Florida. We then went to tour the Naval Aviation Museum, home of the Blue Angels. It was interesting and we saw lots of planes from WW I on to the present. We could have spent much more time there, but we wanted to get back, first stopping at the lighthouse on the way. On Thursday, we went to a place where we raced go karts and that was a lot of fun. I whipped poor Gretchen’s hind end there, never letting my foot off the accelerator. Sorry honey! We then found a really cool putt putt place with a pirate theme. The game was tied after 17 holes, but I made a great putt on the final hole to win by one. Gretchen handled it well, considering she’s a self described poor loser. LOL! We went souvenir shopping in Pensacola and Gulf Shores and picked up some t-shirts and post cards. Thursday night, we went to King Neptune’s Seafood Restaurant on the recommendation of Little Amy. I had flounder and shrimp while Gretchen had crab and oyster stew. We were both pleased with the place and the food was delicious. Since Friday was our last full day there, we were determined to grab some more beach time, so we did — and got a little burned. Heh. It was fun though. That night, we went to Lulu’s to grab a bite. I was less impressed with Lulu’s. It was a tourist trap and although it was supposed to be a seafood restaurant, aside from shrimp, all they had was mahi mahi and snapper. I had a burger. Their souvenir shop was virtually as big as the restaurant and somewhat gaudy. Oh well. We went back to the condo and had a cold bottle of pinot grigio. Yesterday morning, we packed up and hit the road to return to Chattanooga, happy with our wedding and honeymoon, but a little sad that it was all over after all these months of planning. We were sad, too, that we probably won’t see this gathering of friends again like we did at the wedding. However, Little Amy, Ami I, and Rachel all said they were hoping to make it back some time this year, so that’s something to look forward to. I also have to look forward to spending the rest of my life with my one true love, Gretchen, my twin soul cubed. We’re a good match and we’re happy together. I guess that’s about it. Tomorrow we start back to work. Tomorrow is also Gretchen’s birthday. I wish we didn’t have to work on her birthday, but I’ve gotten her a cool gift, so I think she’ll be pleasantly surprised. Cheers!

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I’m Getting Married!

Posted by Scott Holstad on April 2, 2013

I’m getting married this coming Saturday to the love of my life, Gretchen. We’ve been together for awhile now and have been living together since August 2011. We met online on a blogging site in 2004. We’re a really good fit and we’re both very excited about this.

We’re having a very small ceremony and reception. We’re inviting 22 people, almost all of whom are having to travel from out of town and out of state. The person coming the furthest is coming from Seattle. We feel very honored to be sharing this time with our close friends and family. Some people from our church have inquired about coming. We feel badly, but we didn’t invite the church members. We want a small ceremony and the reception is expensive and we can’t afford to have too many people at the reception.

We’re getting married at the Episcopal church we’ve been attending since last May. We’ve really come to love that church and the people there. It’s very warm and inclusive. The ceremony will be simple. Gretchen’s best friend will be her matron of honor. My father will be my best man.

After the ceremony, we’ll all travel to the Mayor’s Mansion Inn for the reception. We’ve got the place for three hours. It’s a lovely old three story B&B built during the 1800s and it’s really exquisite. We’re having an Italian buffet and our cake will be in one of the parlors. I’ve put together a wedding mix on my iPod, which they’re going to pipe through their allegedly great sound system. I’ve got it starting with stuff from Tony Bennett, Frank Sinatra, a little Mozart, and ending up with some KC & the Sunshine Band, Bee Gees, Queen, Journey, Tears For Fears, before finishing up with Louis Armstrong’s “What a Wonderful World.” We’re having enough champagne for a toast and bottles of Pinot Grigio, Merlot, and some Reisling, my personal favorite. We’re hoping our friends and family members mix well since no one will really know each other. We’re also staying there that night, so that’s convenient.

Sunday, we’re returning home. We thought it would be nice to have a Scott & Gretchen visitation day for our out of state guests, just so they could see and talk to us for longer than they would at the wedding. They’re coming a long way. This will give them a chance to see our house and we can all chat for awhile.

On Monday, we leave for the beach at Gulf Shores, AL. I’ve been there before, and truthfully it’s not my favorite beach. Gretchen’s really looking forward to it though, because she loves beaches, and I’m looking forward to getting away, so this will be a good honeymoon. We’re staying at a friend of the family’s condo in a really nice series of high rises called The Beach Club right on the beach, so that’s helpful and convenient.

This is not the first marriage for either of us. We’re each anticipating this will be our last. We feel like we truly fit together as two people are meant to and we have a marvelous relationship. I’m looking forward to spending the rest of my life with Gretchen, and I’m looking forward to this weekend and the following week.

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Wedding Announcement Etiquette

Posted by Scott Holstad on January 13, 2013

My fiance and I are getting married in April. Since it’s not our first marriage for either of us, we’re going to have a simple ceremony with just a few family members and friends in attendance. The bride is not wearing a white wedding gown; I’m not wearing a tux. We just sent our few invitations out this weekend. I have a question though, and it’s about wedding announcements. Since we’re inviting literally about 20 people and since we have many friends and family members we’re not inviting for various reasons (distance being one of them), how should we handle sending out wedding announcements? I’ve done some research and it seems most people send them out after the wedding. However, I want to send them out before the wedding! I want family and friends spread around the country who may not know of the impending wedding to find out in advance, not weeks or months later. I kind of think that’s rude. Sending it before would indicate that while we can’t invite too many people, these other people are in our thoughts. Isn’t that a good thing? Wouldn’t people want to know? Maybe they could send us a card to congratulate us. And how much information should one put on an announcement? Just the fact that we’re getting married on this date or more, and if more, what? I’ve seen several examples and have been dissatisfied with most.

I’ve also had fun setting up our wedding registry on Amazon. You can find it here. It’s been a bit of a challenge, because we already have stuff that most couples would register for when getting married for the first time. I mean, we have two sets of dishes, we have tons of coffee mugs, plenty of glasses, a few towels, etc. etc. However, with Gretchen’s help, I’ve been able to get 24 items on the list so far. And considering that we’re inviting about 20 people, that should be more than enough. I do want to get a few more cheaper items on the list though. About half of the items are pretty cheap, one fourth medium priced, and one fourth somewhat expensive. A few more cheap things would be good. Shoot, I wonder if we’ll even get anything? Maybe people don’t give gifts for second weddings?

We’re really looking forward to the honeymoon too. We almost never take vacations, so this will be special. We’re going to go to Gulf Shores, AL. It’s a nice beach in the Gulf of Mexico just down the road from Florida. Very pretty beach. Gretchen loves beaches, so hopefully the weather will cooperate. Since it’ll be April, the weather should be good. We’re going to be staying in a friend’s condo, so that’s very helpful for the wallet.

Well, I guess I’ve written more than just about wedding announcements. Still, if anyone has advice, I’m open to hearing it. I’d like to get announcements out sometime in the next two weeks. I just need to know what to say on them…. Cheers!

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