After 450 days of planning, it was finally time to get married. No more fussing with a paper cutter; no more fretting about seating charts; no more worrying about the ring bearer’s forgotten tux. Just me, the Baconator, the people we love most in the world, and the moment we’d all been waiting for.
(I am going to include our ceremony in its entirety since we handcrafted so much of it and when I was planning I wished that I had more Bees’ weddings to refer to when putting it all together. The next couple posts will probably be pretty text heavy)
We began with a prayer and moved into asking not only my parents, but also all of the guests for their support of our marriage.
Who supports this woman in her commitment to this man?
My parents did!
We now ask of everyone in attendance, if you stand with the couple and want to express your good wishes as their families and friends please says, “We do!”
The guests did!
Once firmly on the arm of the Baconator, Uncle M got on with the meat of the ceremony which he wrote himself.
I want to again welcome all of you, and on behalf of Dave and Kelsey, I want to thank each and every one of you for taking the time to celebrate this special day with them. Marriage is a very special spiritual connection of two people united for a common purpose, bringing love and trust together into single focus.
We have come together in the presence of God to witness and bless the joining of this man and this woman in Holy Matrimony. We are together as friends, relatives and family to mark the end of one beginning and to recognize officially a new beginning which for Dave and Kelsey serves as a public affirmation of their friendship and their love.
The most wonderful of all things in life, is the discovery of another human being with whom one’s relationship has a growing depth, beauty and joy as the years increase. This inner progressiveness of love between two human beings is a most marvelous thing; it cannot be found by looking for it or by passionately wishing for it. It’s a Divine destiny.
They want this day to mean something special to you as guests. Those who are married may want to silently renew and reaffirm your vows today by gently taking the hand of your partner during this ceremony. Others may want to also join hands and think about what it means to be a friend, for marriage is built first on friendship.
There are no ties on earth so sweet, none so tender as those you are about to assume. There are no vows so solemn as those you are about to make. There is no institution of earth so sacred as that of the union you will form, for the true home is not only the place in which you will live, but is also the dwelling place where each lives in the heart and mind of the other.
Charge to the Couple
Dave and Kelsey, true marriage is the holiest of all earthly unions. It is to be entered into reverently, consciously and with full understanding of its significance.
To be complete, marriage must be spiritual as well as an earthly estate. When it is Spiritual in thought, purpose, plan and action, it becomes the harmonious, peaceful and happy union for man and woman.
The state of matrimony is true marriage only when it is based upon a deep, inner communion of two souls who find completion, each in the other.
Today, your separate lives, each with your individual memories, desires and hopes, merge into one life – a new dimension.
Marriage can be a great adventure when it is the outward expression of a great love; such a love is characterized by compassion, passion and courage.
Such a love requires that you be totally honest with yourself and your mate, that you ask for what you want, take action even though you are afraid, share your feelings and listen but leave your partner free to be who they really are. In other words, always love your partner for who they are, not for who you think they should be.
We as your friends gathered here today, accept for you a love that brings out your magnificence, a love that gives you the courage to stand apart and the willingness to stand together. When times call for you to be apart, may you always return to your togetherness in the same spirit of love that you are feeling in this moment.
After pulling a hanky from my pocket (yes, my dress had pockets!) and dabbing profusely at my eyes, it was time for our first reading. Our dear friend and hostess, Carolyn, read her favorite version of 1 Corinthians 13.
1 If I speak in the tongues of men or of angels, but do not have love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal.
2 If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing.
3 If I give all I possess to the poor and give over my body to hardship that I may boast, but do not have love, I gain nothing.
4 Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.
5 It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs.
6 Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth.
7 It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.
8 Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away.
9 For we know in part and we prophesy in part,
10 but when completeness comes, what is in part disappears.
11 When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put the ways of childhood behind me.
12 For now we see only a reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known.
13 And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.
Next we decided to have our friends do a reading on behalf of each of us that we felt truly captured the love that we had for the other. We opted to make sure that our vows were 100% our own words, so we thought that this was the perfect way to include our favorite bits of literature. Naturally, I asked MOH Lainey, who has been my best friend for more than a decade to read my poem, Love by Roy Croft. She was such a trooper and accepted the post without batting an eye—I didn’t know she was a barrel of nerves until I caught her practicing it in the bridal suite moments before the ceremony!
Love by Roy Croft
I love you
Not only for what you are,
But for what I am
When I am with you.
I love you,
Not only for what
You have made of yourself,
But for what
You are making of me.
I love you
For the part of me
That you bring out;
I love you
For putting your hand
Into my heaped-up heart
And passing over
All the foolish, weak things
That you can’t help
Dimly seeing there,
And for drawing out
Into the light
All the beautiful belongings
That no one else had looked
Quite far enough to find
I love you because you
Are helping me to make
Of the lumber of my life
Not a tavern
But a temple.
Out of the works
Of my every day
Not a reproach
But a song.
I love you
Because you have done
More than any creed
Could have done
To make me good.
And more than any fate
Could have done
To make me happy.
You have done it
Without a touch,
Without a word,
Without a sign.
You have done it
By being yourself.
Perhaps that is what
Being a friend means,
The Baconator chose our friend and groomsman, Trevor, a true kindred spirit to read on his behalf. Never to do things the traditional way, he turned his nose up at my suggestions of poems, song lyrics and book excerpts; instead, he chose an excerpt from Kevin Smith’s Chasing Amy.
I love you. And not in a friendly way, although I think we’re great friends. And not in a misplaced affection, puppy-dog way, although I’m sure that’s what you’ll call it. I love you. Very, very simple, very truly. You are the epitome of everything I have ever looked for in another human being. I had to say it. I can’t take this anymore. I can’t stand next to you without wanting to hold you. I can’t look into your eyes without feeling that longing you only read about in trashy romance novels. I can’t talk to you without wanting to express my love for everything you are. I had to say it, ’cause I’ve never felt this way before, and I don’t care. I like who I am because of it and I just couldn’t allow another day to go by without just getting it out there, regardless of the outcome. All I ask, please, is that you just try to dwell in it for just ten seconds. There isn’t another soul on this planet who has ever made me half the person I am when I’m with you. Please know that I am forever changed because of who you are and what you’ve meant to me.
Midway through Trevor’s reading, I looked over at the Baconator and noticed that my groom was crying. Then I lost it. Legit, lost it. I managed to keep it cool and limited my breakdown to quietly shaking violently at the front of the room of 125+ guests. But as soon as Trevor stepped back into his place with the other groomsmen, I couldn’t contain it anymore. I busted out laughing. I don’t know what came over me. Maybe it was all those emotions bubbling to the top and finally needing somewhere to go or maybe I loved that my big, bad, bold Baconator was crying so I needed to erupt with happiness. But either way, I laughed allowed, and the two of us got to have our very own giggle fest.
With that our of our system, it was time to get back down to business and pledge ourselves to one another in our own words and that’s coming up next!
**All Photos Courtesy of JordanQuinn Photography unless otherwise noted**
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