jayellebee's Blog

July 1, 2012

“I Do” Times Two

What’s wrong with this picture?  Four days into my son’s wedding festivities I still hadn’t shed a single tear – or even teared up.   What kind of mother am I?  I mean, really.  What woman doesn’t cry at her son’s wedding?

The geographical logistics of living in one state and getting married in another can be challenging.  Kevin and Kate live near Seattle, Washington.  They applied for a marriage license while visiting her mother in Reno, Nevada.  Their destination wedding was at Squaw Valley, California.  Legally, for those who care about such technicalities, the license is only valid in the same county where it is issued.

Aboard the Sierra Cloud

My favorite newlyweds found a creative solution to this dilemma.  On Wednesday, four days before the wedding, they tied the knot in front of 40 friends and family during a sunset cruise off the shore of Incline Village, which happens to be in the same county as Reno.  They were pronounced man and wife after a quick ceremony lacking vows and all other formalities.  To punctuate the solemnity of the occasion, without much premeditation, the two took the plunge.  Made a splash, if you will.  Literally.  They jumped, hand-in-hand into the notoriously cold, clear waters of Lake Tahoe

Did I cry?  Not a drop.

Thursday, we ladies putt-putted a round of miniature golf, then feasted on desserts during a bridal shower at Garwoods.   Kate’s grandmother re-gifted the new bride something she’d had since her own wedding.  Another guest presented my darling daughter-in-law with the smallest, sheerest nightgown imaginable.  A bouquet was created from bows and wrappings for later use at the rehearsal.  Chatter revolved around broken ribbons and future babies.

Did I cry?  Not with a platter of desserts being passed for seconds.

Ken gave a lovely tribute to Kate and Kevin during the rehearsal dinner Friday night.   The patio setting at River Ranch Lodge, nestled beside the Truckee River, was spectacular.  The meal sumptuous.  The open bar busy.  We watched a slide show Kate’s mother put together showing the young couple leading remarkably parallel lives as they grew from infancy to the present.  The nostalgia was palpable.

Did I cry?  Heck no!

Saturday evening, in the pines outside PlumpJack at Squaw Valley, Kevin escorted me to my front row seat beside Ken.   An arch fashioned from interwoven branches, festooned with ferns and flowers, framed the mountains in all their olympic glory.  Over night, an unexpected storm had blown in from Alaska and more than 150 people joined us, shivering in the forty-something degree air, but my joy filled me with inner warmth.   Snippets of the ceremony still float through my mind:

Kevin’s face watching a radiant Kate in her ivory, lace and satin gown, arm-in-arm with her father, coming down the aisle.

Meike, the bride and groom’s dog, running to join them in front of assembled guests.  Obedient as always, adorned in her special wedding collar, sitting at Kevin’s side, listening to the ceremony with interest.

The officiate, a long-time friend of Kate and Kevin’s who, knowing them very well, began with the words, “A long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away….”  She paused, smiled, shuffled her papers and murmured, “This isn’t the right script.”  And yet it was the perfect opening.  Kevin was a baby when the original Star Wars movie played in theaters.  Later, droids, a wookie and the Millenium Falcon played in his room.  Why shouldn’t entrance into married life begin with the same excitement as childhood?

The exact wording of the vows Kevin and Kate wrote has escaped me.  But the sincerity, the sense of ease-dropping on something almost too personal to be shared, the overall tone will never fade from my heart.

The officiate concluded the “I Kevin take you Kate … ” segment with a phrase intended to convey the eternal goal of matrimony by adding “… to infinity and beyond.”  A quote from the Toy Story character, Buzz Lightyear? Somewhere behind me, my Disney-loving niece and her family giggled.  I thought, how great to have a wedding that isn’t all serious and solemn but reflects the joie de vie of the participants instead.

Finally, the officiate told my son, “You may now high-five the bride.”  He did, but then their hands clasped and kisses followed.  Married to the same spouse twice in four days!  Quick, someone contact the Guinness Book of World Records!

Did I cry?  Not for a moment.

My youngest son was the best man.  I wondered….  No, in truth, I felt concern about what note he would strike during his toast.  He amazed and delighted Ken and me.  Alternately hilarious and tender, he held the audience’s rapt attention.  My son the accomplished toastmaster.  Who knew?

And that’s when the tears flowed.   Maybe I’m human after all.



  1. […] in Bride, Wedding“I Do” Times Two « jayellebee's Blog … wedding ? The rest is here: “I Do” Times Two « jayellebee's Blog Memorable and Unique Wedding Ideas | Green Wedding ConsortiumWedding Review Blog: Bridal And Gift […]

    Pingback by It's The Bride In Me – “I Do” Times Two « jayellebee's Blog — July 2, 2012 @ 3:55 am | Reply

  2. You’re a stronger woman than I am, Joanne. “To infinity and beyond” made me tear up. What a fabulous story!

    Comment by Donna — July 2, 2012 @ 8:50 am | Reply

  3. Thanks for sharing the wonderful events of your son and daughter-in-law’s weddings with us. How fun for you!

    Comment by Chris Pedersen — July 2, 2012 @ 11:03 am | Reply

  4. Lovely, lovely, lovely. I laughed. I cried. What a celebration for them, for you. Good work, Mom.

    Comment by Jean Georgakopoulos — July 2, 2012 @ 11:18 am | Reply

  5. Life is good Joanne, and the “double wedding” bodes well for a lifetime of double happiness. Best wishes to all the Browns, veteran and recent clan members!

    Comment by Ann Damaschino — July 2, 2012 @ 2:54 pm | Reply

  6. Wonderful, Wonderful! I loved eaves-dropping on a very special week. Thanks for sharing!

    Comment by Bee Hylinski - Author and Baseball Fan — July 5, 2012 @ 12:33 pm | Reply

  7. What a lovely, unique wedding, a touching tale, (tail too, with the dog participating) and two remarkable sons from equally amazing parents. Congratulations!

    Comment by lizbooks — July 6, 2012 @ 3:08 pm | Reply

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