Wedding of the Year

They say that rain on a wedding day is a portent of a good marriage. If so, awhina and MrAwhina should live happily ever after, because it was bucketing down yesterday morning.

Lytteltonwitch, MrPloppy and I arrived at the church early, because we were in charge of creating a booktree. Awhina had left a box of books at the church for us, plus we’d brought a couple of bagfuls ourself, so we had probably 90 books to hang from the tree. In the pouring rain.

The books were ok, because they were all protected in plastic bags (tied with ribbon and lace to make them look suitably wedding-y), but we were all dressed up in our good clothes, and although we did think to bring an umbrella, the problem was that the tree was very wet, so every time you reached up to hang a book, the movement would shake all the water off the tree and down your arms. So by the time we’d finished the tree we were all rather damp (well, lytteltonwitch and I were – MrPloppy had sensibly opted for the job of holding the umbrella while we hung books, so he’d stayed completely dry!)

It looked great though, and once the rain eased off later in the day was popular with the kids (pity we didn’t think to hang more children’s books – most of them were Mills & Boons):

All the books were suitably wedding themed. My contribution was:

The wedding itself was a pretty traditional church ceremony. Awhina looked lovely, as did the two girls, who were the flower girls. One nice touch to the ceremony was that after the vows were exchanged the minister asked the four of them to each light a taper, and then they brought them together to light a candle together to symbolise their new family. It was a really lovely way to involve the girls in the ceremony, I thought.

I didn’t take very many photos during the ceremony (sorry Rarsberry, but I was brought up not to take photos in church, so I felt a bit uncomfortable doing it (even though there was an official photographer snapping away the whole time), and we were sitting a bit too far back to get decent photos anyway), but here’s the happy couple (sorry about the terrible quality):

And here’s another of the whole wedding party taken while the official photos were being done:

(again, not great quality, because they had to do the photos inside because of the rain, so the lighting wasn’t ideal, and I was standing way back to keep out of the official photographer’s way)

Here’s a bit better one of the new family taken later on:

We didn’t really know anyone else at the wedding, apart from awhina’s parents, so things got pretty boring while we were waiting for the photos to be taken. MrPloppy isn’t good with large groups of people at the best of times, and the standing around for ages not knowing what to do just made it worse, so eventually he decided to go home. Lytteltonwitch was kind enough to give him a lift home so he didn’t have to walk home in the rain (which of course left me there on my own with nobody to talk to and feeling very wallflowery, but I entertained myself by watching the photographer work and trying to pick up a few tips), and by the time she got back the photos were over finally and they were opening the door to the adjoining hall where the reception was being held.

Because the wedding started at 9.30, the wedding breakfast actually was breakfast, with mini-bagels and croissants. The Ken doll that lytteltonwitch had presented to them for their engagement was decorating the wedding cake, joined by a Barbie, but for some reason they were sitting down. We learned why during the speeches, when the bridesmaid told us that awhina had been trying to pose the dolls the night before with Ken kneeling at Barbie’s feet, and when he wouldn’t cooperate she broke his leg! (Awhina later claimed it was an accident, but we think it was a warning to the real Ken ;-))

Now that I don’t have to keep it friends-only, I can post a picture of the cross-stitch I gave them as a wedding present, in its finished and framed state:

It almost didn’t make it to the wedding, because when MrPloppy went to pick it up from the framers on Thursday it wasn’t ready! He reminded them that we’d said we needed it for first thing Saturday morning (i.e. before the framers were open), and of course all the shops would be shut on Good Friday, so we’d specifically said we’d have to pick it up on Thursday… Anyway, they did manage to get it finished off before they shut for the night, so we got it in time – just.

Of course, it wasn’t until Friday when I came to wrap it up that I remembered I’d completely forgotten to buy a card to go with it! Luckily I had a few empty card blanks left over from another project, so I quickly searched through all my embroidery books for a suitable pattern to fit the card. I couldn’t find a wedding design of the right size (and didn’t have time to design my own), but I found one for an Easter card which I thought could serve a dual purpose, so used that, and after a marathon sewing session (not helped by the fact that I decided to be creative and add some gold blending filament to part of the design, to match the gold fleck in the fabric – when will I remember how fiddly and slow sewing with blending filament is???) got it finished late on Friday night:

Awhina was suitably impressed by the present, anyway, and made the photographer take a picture of me holding it 🙂

Hen (and a few Roosters and Chicks) Night

We decided to hold this month’s meetup a week early, so that it could also be a hen night for awhina. Or more technically, a “hen and rooster and chicks” night, because we wanted her fiancé and the kids to come along too.

For months lytteltonwitch, MrPloppy and I have been teasing awhina about being her bridesmaids, and threatening to turn up at the wedding wearing our bridesmaids dresses, which evolved with each telling into something even more pink and frothy, until we reached the heights (depths?) of pink tutus and fairy wings.

So of course we just had to turn up at the hen night suitably dressed! We did think of going to a costume hire place and getting proper tutus, but ended up running out of time to organise it, so took a DIY approach, making our own tutus out of sheets of pink tissue paper, and lytteltonwitch had a productive visit to the $2 shop in her lunch hour, buying various embellishments.

We made sure we arrived early at the meetup venue so we could get ready before awhina and family showed up, and put on our tutus (over our ordinary clothes!) and added decorations: I put up my hair (with a lot of help from lytteltonwitch in the absence of a mirror) in two ponytails on the top of my head with sparkly ringlet ribbons; MrPloppy had fairy wings, a wand, and deely-boppers; and lytteltonwitch put more sparkly ringlet ribbons in her hair and attached a huge pink flower to her shirt. We were getting some very funny looks from the other patrons of the cafe (double-takes when they saw the witch and I, and then triple-takes when they saw MrPloppy!).

I think I’ll save the proper photos for a friends-only entry, but here’s one of Ballycumber wearing MrPloppy’s outfit:

[album 128913 030407bridesmaids1.jpg]

Of course, after all this planning, the guests of honour were late! And we couldn’t even order our meals, because we didn’t want to sit down and crush our carefully constructed tutus until they’d seen them. But eventually they did turn up, and were suitably impressed (or disturbed, possibly) by our efforts.

We had a couple of visitors at the meetup too – lusks, a friend of Sherlockfan‘s from Scotland, who had brought along a non-bookcrossing friend. I’m not sure what they made of our silliness, but it was great to meet them, and I think we’ve got a new bookcrossing convert!

And TheLetterB turned up too, so it ended up being quite a big meetup!

Of course, there were a few books changing hands: I released The Last Girls by Lee Smith, Darkness Be my Friend by John Marsden, River Thieves by Michael Crummey, and The Wise Woman by Philippa Gregory, and picked up The Problem with Murmur Lee by Connie May Fowler.

In other bookcrossing news, I’ve had quite a few catches over the last week or so since I last posted: Moon In The Water by Pamela Belle which I released at the Wellington convention, Gravity by Tess Gerritsen, also released in Wellington, but a few months earlier, A History of the United States: Volume Two: The Growth of the USA by RB Nye and JE Morpurgo (which is travelling incredibly well for such a boring looking book!), My Brilliant Career by Miles Franklin, released in Queenstown and on its way to Te Anau, Daddy’s Little Girl by Mary Higgins Clark, released in a fish and chip shop, and two from the books we registered with pre-numbered labels in the YHA bookshelf: White Viper by Terence Strong and Get Your Tongue Out of My Mouth, I’m Kissing You Good-Bye by Cynthia Heimel. Looking at that list, Wellington is definitely a good place for catches!