You can’t get married on New Year’s Eve and not have a big countdown at midnight!
Once the goody table was set up, our guests snatched up beads, hats and blowers, and the anticipation in the room started to build. I put on the beautiful mask I purchased just for this moment, and glasses of champagne and strawberries were passed around.
Ball Cap and I are both of Polish heritage, and we wanted to incorporate a few traditions into our wedding day. We had already served our guests some Polish dishes with dinner, but there were three things I clearly remember from Polish weddings I attended as a kid that we wanted to include during the night.
The first was the removal of the bride’s veil and an apron tied around her waist. Traditionally, this takes place on the first day of the Polish couple’s two-day wedding celebration, and it symbolizes the bride giving up her innocence and accepting her duties as a wife, mother, and hostess. The removal is done by a married woman, or in my experience, my mother.
I took my place on a chair in the middle of the dance floor. I completely forgot that I should have been sitting on Ball Cap’s lap for this part!
The bouquet and garter toss can cause quite a debate in the wedding-planning community. Should you do it or not? Is it outdated? Does it isolate and embarrass the single folk?
I can understand both sides of the argument, but the thing is, I really wanted to toss that thing! I’ve been on the receiving end more times than I can count, and I wasn’t about to pass up my one chance to be the girl who gets to chuck the bouquet. Not only that, Ball Cap definitely wanted to do the garter toss—he was all about it!
We thought long and hard about our song choices. Ball Cap wanted something he could really get down to. “Mannish Boy” by Muddy Waters couldn’t have been more perfect.
Before the party really got started and dancing took over the evening, our photographer set up a backdrop and anyone that wanted a formal picture could take advantage. And boy oh boy did our guests jump in on that action!
Ball Cap and his family—gotta love the sassy pose by Sister A and the silliness of our Best Man!
Ball Cap and I had a difficult time deciding on a song for our first dance. The problem was that we didn’t have one song that we considered to be “our” song—we had several! After some deliberation, we narrowed in down to two: Jack Johnson’s “Better Together” and Coldplay’s “Sparks.”
Ball Cap is a huge Coldplay fan, and we just recently went to their concert in Chicago (amazing, by the way!). Before I met him, I had no clue who Jack Johnson was (I apparently lived in a hole). Both artists and their songs have built the soundtrack to our relationship.
It felt wrong to choose one song over the other, so why not dance to both? I emailed our DJ, and we decided to dance to the first half of “Better Together” and the second half of “Sparks.” Our DJ did a great job and the transition was seamless.
We made it to the reception venue just prior to the start of cocktail hour. We were able to see the space before anyone arrived. This also allowed us to stand by the entrance in a sort of informal receiving line and greet our guests as they arrived. I didn’t know how much time we’d have later on in the evening to speak with everyone, so I was very happy we took the time to do this.
We were serving a fairly large meal after the one-hour cocktail hour, so hors d’oeuvres consisted of bruschetta on toasted baguette and spinach and artichoke dip on toasted baguette, both served butler-style. I didn’t even try one! I was on such a high and was so excited to see everyone that food was the last thing on my mind. I did have someone grab me some water—I was parched from talking so much!
As cocktail hour wound down, the parents, along with us and the bridal party, lined up in the lobby. The DJ cranked The White Stripes’ “Seven Nation Army,” and everyone strutted their stuff to a round of applause.