Four Weddings, Nine days

May has proven itself to be a rival to the “June Wedding Month” stereotype… When it rains it pours- they say. Clearly love is in the air the last week and a half. Part of the events, I was an invited guest, and other times it was because of work. Regardless- hope you enjoy snapshots of my day:

Wedding  1: Come gracious Spirit Heavenly Dove, with light and comfort from above…  The music rose and fell, along with great drops of rain creating the most intriguing combo. From my vantage point, a horse peered out of a stable door his ears pricked- listening… A chicken ran past and shivered in the rain… a green fern waved gently in the breezes…  Be Thou our guardian, Thou our guide- or every step and step preside.. The farm dog lay stretched out nearby- snoring contentedly- She had successfully been part of the day- She had managed to feel the urge to nap precisely at 9:30 and of course, the best place was an open area out of the rain- So she stretched out in the aisle- and seemed oblivious to the fact that the entire bridal party had to troop over her… And I smiled- it is really an honor to be included in a special day…

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Wedding 2: Exactly at 11:00 the Ford pickup, that I thought was parked in the drive to help guest find parking, suddenly started to move… And as it rumbled its way up the drive- it became obvious its occupants were not the car parkers… The bride descended from the passenger side. 🙂 The setting of this event was rather magical- in the woods in front of the groom’s home- the busy birds of the forest and a distant baying of a hound created the music for the morning. The bride had slaved away for weeks on wedding prep, and she had a lot of original ideas. I loved the country feel – such a relaxed, happy occasion!

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Wedding 3: This one started at 8ish and lasted til after 12… But since it was in a language none of our gang understood- we arrived about 10 minutes before the couple took their vows. We had barely gotten seated, when the door opened and the cooks and waitresses arrived (all 100 of them) and the immediate family- I was shocked to discover that the family only gets in on the vows- then they scurry back to the reception area. The bride (and her attendants) wore  Navy, a white apron and black coverings. Everyone else wore the bride’s choice of blue. And who knew there were so many choices of blue: federal, denim, steel, sky… And although our gang completely flubbed when you kneel for prayer and when you stand for prayer- the rest of the service went fairly much as expected.  Until the music…  

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Last winter I watched a flock of birds flying across the Valley in front of me- Like a dark ribbon in the sky. As I watched them go- wings flapping- rolling along after some unknown leader- I was amazed at how the entire gang of thousands of birds followed an unseen pattern.  Up they’d all go, and down they would swoop- together as a group… Fascinating.. The final song of the service was also in German and it was not the first time I’ve heard the traditional music. But wow- it was the loudest vocal music I have ever experienced (the guys in our group admitted to wanting to protect their ears)  And like that flock of birds or the ebb and flow of  water at the seaside- the singing would start and get louder and louder and high and lower without a noticeable pattern… And I sat on the sidelines and watched with ears ringing . Fascinating…

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The rest of the day was packed full- lots of good food, laughter, singing and volleyball. I found the tour of the kitchen to be amazing- a shop with 9 propane portable ovens baking away… About 9- we left this happy place and start the 4 hours trek southwest to…

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Wedding 4: At this event, I took my driver role seriously and spent the day running around with the bus driver 🙂 My dad had left VA at 12:30 to bring the bus to the wedding- so he and I spent the morning relaxing at a neighbor’s house and then ran around the community taking self guided farm tours. 🙂 It was great. We arrived back at the wedding in the afternoon and got ready for the return trek to the Valley. The music from the afternoon wafted out the windows from the house  and after the singing continued after the assumed departure time, we started joking about calling out a parting hymn… So Father said “607 in the Church Hymnal” And just like they could’ve heard us from across the parking lot “Bless Be The Tie That Binds” floated on the breezes…  The bus left a bit before us, and the entire trip home- we kept updated on where police where watching traffic “Hey Ken, There’s a bear at 214…” And our gang felt smug when we spotted an actual black bear trying to cross the interstate. Guess that was a bear that went undetected.

When I think back over this wedding marathon, I’m amazed. People are people. We love, we laugh, we cry. We sing loudly sometimes, and sometimes quietly.. These events represented a vast variety of culture, experiences, and communities. And yet they were similar, Two people met, fell in love, and felt God’s leading to make this a lifetime event. Countless hours were spent in prep for the big day- lots of people helping- made it a community wide effort. Crowds showed up the day of to help celebrate (or at least eat the amazing food..) And before we know it – it’s a happy memory…

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On the flip side- no two stories are alike- and that comes out in wedding days as well- rainy, sunny, flowers of the bride’s choice… So similar, yet such unique individuals…

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All of this makes me excited- someday- we will all be invited to the best Wedding Ever… May We be busy TODAY preparing for that earth shattering event.

– Kendra

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