Wedding - Ceremony

Joyful, Joyful! Wedding Pictures From Rancho La Zaca (Finally)

Finally I got married (again) at the tender young age of don’t-make-me-say-it. And finally a year (and two weeks) later I am getting around to the photos because so many of you were so adorable to ask. Or maybe you were just been being nice… but JIC, here they are.

I know, finally.

Finally I got married (again) at the tender young age of don’t-make-me-say-it. And finally a year (and two weeks) later I am getting around to the photos because so many of you were so adorable to ask. Or maybe you were just been being nice… but JIC, here they are. I’ve tried to include images that will also give you ideas for your own celebrations and outdoor entertaining, because otherwise, it is like watching someone else’s home movies. Now here is Aunt Gertrude… Zzzzz…

Wedding - Altar. Photo Aaron Delesie.

The olive grove at Rancho La Zaca, where we live in California, creates a kind of cathedral and seemed the perfect place for a religious ceremony. (On other days it is also the perfect place for a long, lazy lunch… also divine, but in a different way.)

The creative tour de force of Mindy Rice and Lisa Vorce designed and executed everything so beautifully that all I had to do was to, A) not fall down when I walked in, and, B) have a good time and love being with family and friends, which was easy. Oh how grateful I am for them all.

The boys
Wedding - Benches in Olive Grove. Photo Aaron Delesie.
Wedding - bridesmaid

The ritual of ceremony is important to me, and the Episcopal service is beautiful. Since we didn’t have prayer books, having a program that allows everyone to follow along and participate was important as well. For the cover, we had a monogram designed combining two F’s with a T for Tom in the center. As in center of the universe of course.

Wedding - ceremony programs. Photo Aaron Delesie. 

Dum-dum-de-dum. Dum-dum-de-dum. Did you know that that particular wedding march was composed by Richard Wagner for the opera Lohengrin? I was never that big on Wagner.

But I love Beethoven. So in we marched to his 9th, the Ode to Joy, with the hymn Joyful, Joyful We Adore Thee. Preacher’s Partner Bill Hurbaugh lead the chorus, as he is a professional and not shy about it if you know what I mean. We walked in all together with our families, lead by our friend and rector Randall Day (aka in this blog, Preacher). Everybody sang. I love to sing. I also cried a little at the altar. I couldn’t help it. But it worried our cherubic young friend and crucifer, who looked very concerned, which then made me laugh, so I stopped.

Wedding - Ceremony. Photo Aaron Delesie.

Whew. Did not fall down. Here are both our families. Everybody likes everybody. We are lucky lucky. It is sad, though, that both sets of our parents are gone. We wished they could have been there. I believe they were with us somehow, and happy about it.

Wedding - Our families. Photo Aaron Delesie.

I had braces when I was a teenager for like 50 years, but my teeth still stick out. Seriously in close-ups I look like Mr. Ed. My sister’s teeth are perfect. She is beautiful inside and out.

With my awesome sister and matron of honor Duvall Fuqua, Photo Aaron Delesie.

My (much) younger sister, I should say.

We rode in a golf cart to the pond for the reception. It got cool so I put on a somewhat flea-bitten fox-trimmed cardigan. The only reason for this picture is a cautionary tale, or make that tail, as in pull your sweater over yours before you go swanning into your own reception all duchess-like. I’m just glad I didn’t have a wedgie for Pete’s sake.

Wedding Reception - Rancho La Zaca, Photo Aaron Delesie.

There was a little quartet of doo-wop singers on the walkway in. That was fun.

Look at this table. Abundance. Gratitude. Blessings.

Wedding Reception-Rancho La Zaca-Centerpiece, Photo Aaron Delesie.

The tablecloth fabric was a rich, deep chocolate embroidered with jewel-toned autumn colors. We had them made and will use them often. That is a thing about renting tablecloths and other items you use for entertaining. If you do think you will use them again and have the space to store them, sometimes it is worth the investment to buy. Worth looking into, anyway.

Wedding Reception - Rancho La Zaca. Photo Aaron Delesie.

 We did not have a seated dinner at the reception. The rehearsal dinner (here) was seated–with all the out of town folks–and that was enough. Growing up in the South, we did not have seated dinners at receptions, probably because it interfered with the drinking.

Wedding Reception - Rancho La Zaca. Photo Aaron Delesie.

I mention it because we did have a bit of a scuffle about seating. I did not want a sea of tables and chairs because everyone would not be sitting down at once. But this made the Mindy-Lisa authorities nervous. We compromised with tables and chairs for about half the number of guests and occasional seating arranged around the two trees in the reception area. Wooden benches and rush and wicker ottomans worked like a charm.  Inexpensive, good looking, easy to move. Mindy added pillows, candles and bowls of fruit. Just right.

Wedding Reception - seating by the pond. Photo Aaron Delesie.

There were food tables all around and an oyster bar set up on the little dock, which was cool.

Here is the centerpiece again, from farther back. We left the wooden legs exposed and used only a runner of the embroidered fabric. Camellia and grape leaves, hydrangeas, roses, pumpkins, berries and harvest fruits with all sorts of goodies. I had a cow when I saw it.

A small cow, but still. Brides should not have cows.

The amazing center table with Mindy Rice. Photo Aaron Delesie.

To tell you the truth I was slightly embarrassed about the bride thing. I mean I love to dress up and all, but I was squeamish about the attention. I don’t know why. What got me past it was remembering that at this gathering, like all we host, Tom and I were indeed hosts and there to make every single person feel welcome. I hope we did that, because they sure were.

So that everyone could talk, we had barely audible background music for the first hour. And then … honey once that dance floor got going, it did not stop, and neither did the band, including a Jersey Boys set which was out of control. Speaking of, West Coast Music organized it all superbly, keeping the volume as requested at a civilized level so people could still converse within cha-cha distance from the dance floor.

Why people play music so loud that they can neither speak nor hear is an absolute obnoxious mystery to me.

There was no music during the cake-cutting, obviously.

Wedding Reception-Rancho La Zaca-Cutting the cake. Photo Aaron Delesie.

Or immediately after. Once we cut the cake and toasted…

Wedding Reception-Rancho La Zaca-Yay! Photo Aaron Delesie.

Boom. That’s why I did my arms out like Olga Korbett landing a back flip. The fireworks had their own soundtrack which was as much fun to put together as any of it. Anybody remember “Cowboys to Girls” by The Intruders? (I also call HG my Cowboy.) And how about that Tim McGraw song “I may be a real bad boy, but baby I’m a real good man.” That is you-know-who to a T.

Wedding Reception-Rancho La Zaca-Fireworks! Photo Aaron Delesie.

The pond is not big, so the fireworks on the far side are close, reflecting over the water and like they’re right on top of your head.

Tom and Frances and Wedding Night Fireworks
Boom. Photo by Ruth Fuqua.

All pictures are by the wonderful Aaron Delesie, except for the last by my niece Ruth Fuqua, which accompanied my little announcement (here) in this space last year with the funny story about losing the marriage license yadda yadda. It is my favorite photo of all. Except my arm looks kind of fat.

Love, Bridey Boo Boo, one (mostly) blissful year later…


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