Good news: Today I went to a beautiful, sacred, meaningful, elegant, joyous, delicious and downright fun wedding.
Bad news: I was so busy enjoying myself that I forgot to take pictures. I got a few, but my camera roll does not do this event justice. I have a few regrets about that, but not many. Sometimes, living in the moment matters most.
At least I can tell you about the happy couple - meet my nephew, Steve, and Helen.
Well. Steven is not really my nephew. He's a college friend of my second-born who bears an uncanny resemblance to us Streichers but is actually no relation whatsoever. Still, he insists he's part of the family, so that's all that matters to me. His 'Auntie Anne' I have gladly become.
Steven's bride is an articulate, intelligent woman who is passionate about her faith and the pro-life cause, and she also happens to be a first-generation American of Vietnamese descent.
Which explains why she was able to round up five - count 'm, FIVE - adorable little shiny black-haired flower girls. Squint at this blurry photo, and they will almost appear to come into focus.
The entire ceremony was a lovely mix of two cultures, with songs and readings alternating between the two languages. I sat on the groom's side of the aisle with the pale white Irish and German types, and listened in fascination to the lilting tones of the bride's family as they spoke in their native tongue.
God bless America. I'm proud to live in a country where multicultural, multiracial marriages happen every day and no one bats an eyelash.
After the marriage was finalized, we left the soaring brick cathedral and zoomed down to the reception at the Renton Pavilion. No offense, Renton, but I was really surprised to find such an interesting, modern space with an industrial vibe and tons of gorgeous natural light. I loved the exposed wooden ceiling, the no-frills lighting, and the giant white organza bow.
And Helen incorporated more bows into her decor with green sashes on the chairs and matching green table runners.
Oh. I should probably mention here that Helen and her bridesmaids all wore bright green sashes around their waists, just like the ones on the chairs. Too bad I didn't think to take any photos of that. Well, just trust me...they were gorgeous.
The reception was a multicultural mash-up too - the food was mostly American; the live dragon dance performance was straight-up Vietnamese, and the band played some Irish reels. For an hour or so, Helen changed out of her traditional Western wedding gown into a Vietnamese áo dài, and it was fun to see how the Asian women beamed when she was dressed that way.
We all enjoyed the fantastic international hospitality.
Then we danced to Bye Bye Bye and The Chicken Dance and Thrift Shop, and got all sweaty and disheveled.
And that's when I thought it might be a nice time for a photo shoot with the happy couple.
Well, my photos of this special day are definitely bad news, but Steve and Helen's wedding is good news, indeed. Congratulations and best wishes for a blessed life together to my nephy and my new niece-in-law!
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My other musings about marriage: