All of the fussy details that I spent the most time thinking about and planning for our wedding day faded very quickly in moment. The little things here and there that I would change now have no real bearing on the outcome of the day. In the end, we got married. We cried, we laughed, we shared a very special moment with our families; it was simple, unfettered and imperfectly perfect.
Up until a few weeks before our wedding, we were actually going to cook and serve a meal in our home for our guests. When I think about that idea now, I realize how crazy it was! Doing dishes in a wedding dress? What a nightmare that would have been. Last minute, we decided to have lunch after the ceremony at The Hublersburg Inn. The restaurant is only a three minute drive from the church and we were lucky enough to have the place to ourselves. The Inn is so beautifully decorated during Christmas so all we had to do was decorate the tables a bit. Each guest had a quilt on the back of their chairs, most of which had been handmade by Mark's Grandmother Ardry. Everyone ordered exactly what they wanted from the menu and then we ate cake. There was no dancing or hoopla - it was casual, quiet, comforting and relaxed.
There is a reason why we eat cake at the end of a wedding. Cakes take so much time, planning, thought and hard work. Even a simple cake like ours took time. And then, it's decimated. Sliced and diced and gobbled up. It is a perfect analogy to such a momentous occasion like a marriage. Even a small wedding like ours took time to plan, coordiantion and delegation, but it unfolded so quickly that what really mattered was how it felt in the moment, not how it looked. Just as a cake is ultimately measured by its flavor, our day was warm, joyful, stressful, a bit awkward, funny, moving and happy...it was a perfect balance.
I don't think there was a doubt in our minds about paring down the day. Mark and I had lengthy discussions about how complex we wanted our wedding to be. In the end, simplicity won out. Although some family and friends were disappointed about not receiving invitations, we were overwhelmed and grateful for how well they all seemed to understand. Going small worked for us and luckily the people in our lives supported that choice.
Another thing we deliberately chose not to do was freeze any of our cake for our anniversary. If I made it the first time, I can make it again! The idea of having year-old, defrosted cake doesn't seem very celebratory to me. So I decided to make a new, miniaturized version of our cake and mixed up the flavors a bit. The bottom tier of our original cake was chocolate with chocolate buttercream filling and the top tier was spice cake with peanut butter buttercream filling. The entire cake was then iced with vanilla swiss meringue buttercream. Nothing fancy, just like us.
We've sort of been celebrating the whole month of December as "First Anniversary Month." We took a little day trip one week, the next week we went out to dinner and then finally spent a leisurely morning getting our Christmas tree. The snow was falling gently while we strolled around, looking for the perfect one. Neither of us were in a hurry to find it, and I think that says a lot.
Happy Holidays to you and yours!