Friday, February 27, 2009

one last thing...

this is a bit blind
but if you'd be so kind

just click on this link
(it's quicker than you think)

then pretty please, won't you vote for me?
so Werner and I can get stuff for free!

thank you!

ps. below the main picture there is a tiny little off-white button with 'vote' written in green, just click on it! voting closes around 27 march 2009. xxx

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

auf wiedersehen

My wedding is over, the recaps are done.
I loved my wedding, I love my man, I love my life.
But I am a tired little blogger bride.
I knew it would come, it happened to most of the wonderful blogger brides before me.
I need to let this go, for a little while.
I hope that when I want to write again, I'll still find you here, ready to share and listen and squeal and laugh and advise once more.
I'd like that.
Love x

Monday, February 23, 2009

our wedding N: dance

The perfect words never crossed my mind
'Cause there was nothing in there but you
I felt every ounce of me, screaming out
But the sound was trapped deep in me

All I wanted just sped right past me
But I was rooted fast to the earth
I could be stuck here for a thousand years
Without your arms to drag me out

There you are, standing right in front of me
All this fear falls away, you leave me naked
Hold me close, 'cause I need you to guide me to safety

No, I don't wanna wait forever

In the confusion and the aftermath
You are my signal fire
The only resolution and the only joy
Is the faint spark of forgiveness in your eyes

There you are, standing right in front of me
All this fear falls away, you leave me naked
Hold me close, cause I need you to guide me to safety

No, I don't wanna wait forever

(Abbreviated lyrics to 'Signal Fire' by Snow Patrol)

When we just started seeing each other, Werner made me a mix tape (on CD of course) that I kept in my car. I listened to that one compilation for months and months, while he was here and we were road tripping all over the place making memories to last a lifetime. And then when he was away and all was confusion and the longing would hurt so much. Some days I couldn't bear hearing it, on others it was my life line.

'Signal Fire' in particular spoke to us, the soft sweet sadness of our beginning and his leaving, and then the fervent urgency to be together right now, forever.
If you don't know the song, you should give it a listen. It starts off so pretty, melodic, sweet and serene. Hearing it now takes me back to this moment, in a flash.

Yes, we are singing along to each other, even though we knew it would look cheesy and dumb. We couldn't resist.

And then the chorus rocks out with loud, urgent drums and frenzied guitar.

Hello Papillon, I didn't realise you were such a naughty, sheer number?

We actually went for one dance lesson... Can you tell?

Oh dear, I really do love acting out to songs... I think this is "No I don't want to wait forever".

Now, every last little wedding formality was done and dusted. We'd done it!

It was time to party.

Before long, Werner had had enough of the tie, and he was breaking it down.

This boy is a VERY enthusiastic dancer. I think it's hot.

Some find it shocking.

Others try to compete.

I just like this shot.

We're getting the video this week.

I can't wait!

Friday, February 20, 2009

our wedding M: decor & dinner

During the wedding planning, I mentioned in a post how each bride has her own personal wedding priorities. Flowers and decor were not high on my list. The hotel was pretty enough as it is, anything else was just a bonus. It's ironic that the florist ended up being one of our biggest expenses. I still don't quite know how that happened?

This was the mock-up of our table centre pieces, done at the florist's studio a month before the wedding. We'd given some vague indication of our likes and dislikes, included some key themes such as 'modern romantic' and this is what we got. We loved it.

On location, it looked like this. Very fresh, modern, not too fussy. Happiness.

At the eleventh hour I decided to splurge on menus to match our invitations. My favourite wedding quote, the one that kept me sane all through the planning process, is printed at the top of the menu.
"I dreamed of a wedding of elaborate elegance, a church filled with flowers, friends and beautiful music. I asked him what kind of a wedding he wished for, he said one that would make me his wife."

We were sabotaged by quite a bit of wind on the evening of our wedding, so the hundreds of candles I insisted on, had very little effect at the outdoors dinner!

This is the upper terrace where our poor guests were left to the elements. Luckily some clever ones borrowed my MIL's beautiful quilts that were spread out at the amphitheater to keep warm.

The lower terrace was pretty much completely sheltered. The double doors at the end lead straight onto the dance floor.

Venues always look much better to me when they're peopled!

We only had one table inside, in a room opening onto the terraces from the left, for grandparents and other highly esteemed guests who wanted to be out of the weather. Here MIL and I popped round to meet and greet.

My maternal grandparents, who couldn't attend the wedding because they live far, far away and are a bit fragile for air travel these days, gave me these cut glass vases as part of my inheritance. I put my bouquet and the bridesmaids' in there, right on the dance floor, so Ouma & Oupa Liewie could be there in spirit.

These flamingos are actually part of my sister Ankia's inheritance from the Liewies, and I wanted to use them as my cake topper. Unfortunately the instructions got lost along the way and Werner ended up housing them in the bird cage that was meant for keeping cards from our guests!
I'd almost gone with easy-peasy supermarket cupcakes as wedding cake, but my MIL politely insisted that we get something a bit more special. These were Charly's mucking afazing chocolate cupcakes with white butter cream icing. The best cake ever! Says me, the "I don't really care for cake rather give me a packet of crisps" girl.

And then, the much debated cake topper that did make it to the top of the stand! Some brides have voiced concern at the negative connotations and stereotyping of such novelty figurines. My MIL and I saw it for the first time in RK Bridal in New York and loved it. Maybe it's because in our situation there was certainly no-one dragging anyone else to the chapel, that we could just enjoy the humour of it. Actually, if there'd been a groom dragging the bride, I would've chosen that one for sure!

Thursday, February 19, 2009

our wedding L: amphitheatre

While Werner and I were busy taking photographs, our guests waited in the amphitheatre at the bottom of the hotel's garden. They were served some delightful appetisers and as much sparkling wine as they could handle. We'd also set up a photo booth in the amphitheatre to amuse them while they waited.
We came back from taking pictures and, believing our guests to be well entertained, sneakily sat down in the reception area for a minute to catch our breath and have a bite to eat.
People kept coming past en route to the bathrooms and we'd tell them to pretend they hadn't seen us. It was such a nice, normal moment in between all the activity and excitement. While we were mostly just gobbling up basil-chicken-mayo crostini or washing down a strawberry-cream cheese bruschetta with some bubbly, we did share a very real, private moment of 'wow, we're married'!

I'd left the look of the photo booth entirely up to our capable florist / decorator. To be honest, when we spoke about a gold background, chaise lounge situation I was picturing a sumptuous Marie Antoinette style setup. What I got was a bit more Shaka Zulu, but that's fine too...

Here's a tip for future brides. A photo booth before plentiful alcohol is not nearly as much fun as one after plentiful alcohol. I thought my guests would be wacky interesting enough to create some crazy pics early on, but they were all disappointingly well-behaved!

Meanwhile Ian used the opportunity to snap some candid shots of our hyper photogenic guests.

Gorgeous Fashionista, aka Misi, the one who started it all. Mwah!

Then, finally, we were ready to arrive as Mr & Mrs. We came down the hill to the sound of "Can't take my eyes of you" by Frankie Valli and I was just happy, happy, happy. The party was about to start!

(sorry Ian, I've been messing with this picture...)

We'd been planning to sit in the front row of the amphitheatre seating, but when we got there I decided we'd take the chaise lounge instead. Front and centre!
Werner's siblings kicked off the proceedings with a short and very sweet toast to their parents. Fifteen year old Saskia stole the show with a heartfelt sentence delivered like a professional public speaker. The sentiment was "No one could ask for better parents than you, and I wouldn't."

Xander was pretty funny, but I'll have to see the video to remember what he said!
My brother Phil, order of events in hand at all times, was the MC.

Ankia toasted my parents. I need to hear that again too, but I remember her speech being very honest and true. No gross exaggerations or hyperbole. Just short, simple, stunning.

After the siblings, we had both the best men and two of my bridesmaids toasting Werner and I. Sadly the sun was setting and the wind was coming up, so we have no good pictures and it got quite chilly out there. I said a few words unprepared, I don't remember exactly what, except "I am loved and I am grateful". I cringe a little bit at having to watch it on video, but it felt right in the moment. After Werner's speech (of which I can recall nothing, how sad?) every last little formality was done and we could truly join the party as guests. Yay.