We all know the phrase, “Something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue, and a silver sixpence in her shoe.” (OK, maybe not everyone is familiar with the last part (myself included) until Mrs. Archer sent me her sixpence to use on my wedding day. Yay!)
My guess is we’ve all probably wondered what we’d use for each of our “somethings” on our wedding day at some point during the planning process. That said, I’m a big advocate for making your wedding your own and making it unique and personal to yourself and your partner. So who cares if you have all your somethings picked out way in advance or if you scrap them all together? Since there was a piece of me that wanted to complete my “somethings,” I decided to go ahead with them, but in my own special way.
Something old: Grandma Sword’s handkerchief, passed down to her from the Grandmother who raised her. Her Grandmother received the hankie as a gift when she was working at a hospital in the 1930/1940′s. The handkerchief is decorated with beautiful Japanese embroidery, and my favorite part is that you can’t tell which side is the front and which side is the back. Does anyone know what that technique is called?
Something new: Our family tartan! While the standard answers of dress, shoes, and jewelry are also fitting, there’s nothing quite as new as our newly minted tartan! It doesn’t exist anywhere else. Mr. Sword and I designed it together and had it wove in Scotland and then shipped to the US. Boss Lady has made me a beautiful tartan shawl to wear on the wedding day and I couldn’t be more thrilled to match Mr. Sword’s kilt!
I’m a fan of tradition—family tradition, holiday tradition, wedding tradition, you name it. Following traditions makes me feel like I’m a part of something bigger than myself, like I’m a part of those generations upon generations of people who did it before me. However, sometimes traditions are outdated, meaningless, even downright offensive, and then it’s time to reevaluate them. There are some wedding traditions that fall into that category, which these Wizards will most definitely not be following.
1. Bride and groom not staying together the night before the wedding.
Uh, guys? We live together. We sleep in the same bed every night. It’s part of our everyday lives, and it would be downright silly for us to sleep separately just because it’s the night before our wedding. I don’t sleep very well without him there, and goodness knows I’m going to be having enough trouble falling asleep that night anyway. I don’t need anything else to complicate it. Plus, I’m so excited to share such an exciting moment with him—the night before our freakin’ wedding. Lying there trying to fall asleep, amazed at what we’re about to do, taking it all in, trying to wrap our brains around it. It’s crazy. It’s huge. We’re going to have a lot on our minds, and I don’t want to share that with anyone else but him.
Every wedding I have ever been to, there has been a money dance. For those of you who aren’t aware of what this is, basically your guests slip you some cash in order to dance with you until the next person comes along. While the idea is great because the couple can use the cash on their honeymoon, I have always secretly balked at this idea.
At the last wedding we were at, Mr. Buck and I completely forgot about the money dance. Neither of us had any cash on us. We only had our ATM cards, which of course did us no good. We awkwardly stood around while others were lining up to dance with the bride. Quite frankly, we felt really bad that we forgot to grab cash. (In our defense though, we did bring a pretty sweet gift.)
I made a bold proclamation to Mr. Buck that there will be NO money dance at our wedding. I had good reasoning to back this up, too. People already will be taking time to come to our wedding, possibly with a gift, and I do not want them to feel like they need to give us money to dance with me. I assumed Mr. Buck was on the same page as me…but apparently not. He completely disagreed with me and said that our guests will want to participate in the money dance.
Why do I feel like I am being pimped out by my fiance?
I’ve written before about my mom’s (and consequently my family’s) obsession with all things Indian. One of the coolest ways this obsession has manifested is that for 20 years my parents hosted an Indian feast at our house on Christmas Eve for a group of our family and friends.
Sadly, about 5 years ago, my parents decided that the feast was too much work to continue and they stopped hosting it and we instead began spending Christmas Eve at Indian restaurants with immediate family only. While I’m perfectly happy with this arrangement, I was beyond thrilled when I received an invitation to a Christmas Indian feast held in our honour.
That’s right: my sister/MOH decided to bring back our old tradition as a pre-wedding celebration for Mr. Knitting and myself. Think wedding shower, minus pretty much everything that says shower. It was perfect.
Here’s the fam:
Yeah, yeah, yeah, the Jaguars are planning a traditional wedding—I’ve put it out there enough for the entire universe to know that by now, right? That being said, one of the best things about having the Internet (and the hive!) at your disposal is being able to incorporate more modern aspects of wedding planning into your day, no matter what its theme. Modern, snazzy things make me feel warm and fuzzy inside.
Unfortunately for us, they just don’t seem to be fitting in well with our wedding. I’m finding myself coming up against quite a few roadblocks when discussing planning with some of the key members of our family—particularly my future in-laws. Here are a few options that have been shot down in flames so far:
Save The Dates – What’s the point? Mr. Jaguar’s parents thought I was hilarious for mentioning these and actually laughed at a sample magnet I had made up and stuck proudly on our refrigerator door in our apartment. They’ve indicated that they have already told most family members on their side to keep the date free, so why bother sending cards?
Videographer – Apparently this is something that is a big etiquette no-no for the Jaguar-In-Laws. Their reasoning was that they’ve seen them used in other cousins’ weddings where they bothered the older guests, got in the way, and made people uncomfortable. This is the first I’ve head of this happening—but they’re really adamant that people will be less than impressed to have a professional filming the wedding for us.
I liked this post because I learned so much about Chinese traditions through the Chinese cookie party tradition. Weddings are as much about joining families as they are about the couple. Respecting and honoring traditions of the past, no matter how strange they may seem to us today, is a way to honor our families, too.
I wouldn’t consider myself traditionally Chinese in the cultural sense. My Cantonese is at the same level of a three-year-old and my family doesn’t really celebrate any of the Chinese holidays, the Lunar New Year included. But when it came to my wedding, my mom insisted on going through the whole shebang of Cantonese wedding traditions.
This weekend, my family threw me what Cantonese people call a “cookie party.” The tradition goes something like this:
Pittsburgh is a stronghold of a particular wedding tradition that I believe (and please correct me if I’m wrong) is exclusive to the southwestern Pennsylvania/eastern Ohio region: the cookie table.
I had never heard of this custom until I started planning my own Pittsburgh wedding, at which point I realized what a big deal it is; cookie tables are standard wedding operating procedure in good ol’ PGH.
UPS delivery is always a race against time ’round these parts. We’ve had the delivery person walk away in the amount of time it took me to run from my living room couch to the front door (a distance of a whopping four feet). Since I got the notice from Ketubah Ketubah that my order was on its way, when I heard the knock on the door I was on my feet and running like a bat out of hell (in my bathrobe and sweatpants, no less) hoping that would be it.
I hadn’t ordered anything else poster-shaped, so I knew what I was looking at, and I patiently waited for Mr. Spaniel to get home from work to rabidly tear into it to see the goods. Just kidding; I did wait for him to get home, but I opened it without him when he left for the gym.
Although it’s cold and dreary outside, I need to start brainstorming pretty, summer inspirations for our Chuppah. In case you aren’t familiar with the term, a Chuppah is a canopy that Jewish couples are traditionally married under. It is supposed to represent the new home the couple is creating together. The lack of walls in the structure is meant to symbolize the welcoming of everyone into the home as well as the tradition of Tzedakah, or charity.
My grandmother has already offered to let me use her mother’s (my great-grandmother’s) lace tablecloth for the top of the Chuppah. Now it’s just a matter of figuring out how to work out the details of the structure. It has to be big enough that at least myself, Mr Trail Mix and our rabbi can all stand underneath it.
I know I want to keep it organic-looking and natural. It’s possible we will either stick the poles straight into the ground, but if it rains, then we will have to have the ceremony inside and I can’t really stick poles into a wood floor, so I need to think of an alternative. Oftentimes, the groomsmen or other important guys physically hold the four poles up, but I think I’d rather not do that because… well, you can imagine all the possible scenarios where that could go terribly, terribly wrong.
When I was a child, my first name was the bane of my existence.
People kept adding extra syllables to it. Or realizing that the last syllable of my name rhymes with “sneeze”.
I tried to correct the people who actually meant to say my name properly, but it would only work for a few days at a time. Then they would inevitably segue back into some horrible bastardization.
Of course, I was far too embarrassed to correct them a second time. This meant that some of my childhood friends said my name wrong for years. Um, okay, it’s possible they still do.
So, yes, I was an adult before I came to terms with having a super-unusual name. But now I kind of like it. It’s not like I’ll ever run into anyone else in the room with the same name. And I get to be a little bit mysterious, which is kind of fun.
It also goes together rather well with my last name. Together, my whole name sounds pretty solidly Indian (although my first name is not really an Indian name but a derivation of Persian name).
I never considered changing my last name at all until I got engaged. Now I’m still pretty lukewarm about the idea.
There’s a lot of different ways weddings are celebrated here (just like in any other country), but there’s several ways Chileans incorporate some tradition into their special days. Some use traditional music, clothes, dance, food, drinks, or the basic horse ride in “Victoria”. I’m not planning on adding all of those to our wedding, but I thought I should share them .