One thing I loved about this wedding was how Candice wanted it to involve the whole family. From the proposal to the reception, the kids were involved. While she certainly could have done some of these things more quickly herself, she wanted them all to be a part of it and remember being a part of it. Here she has them painting the wood for the game booths. They also helped with the make the decorations and flowers.
These will be fond memories. All of us painting signs together for the big day.
These are the signs I painted.
It was a beautiful day. We all met in our back yard to rehearse.
I loved having a houseful of friends and family.
The Rehearsal Dinner
Since the wedding had a carnival theme, we chose Darryl's for the rehearsal dinner. Here Candice, Canaan, Candice's sister Nicole, and Canaan's friend Chris are all sitting in a Ferris wheel seat.
Silas, Kiki, Levi, Laz and Isaac.
Marcus (groomsman), Stephanie (Canaan's friend from his days at Moe's), Tyler (another Moe's friend and Stephanie's fiance), MK (Josh's fiancee), and Josh (the best man, again, met at Moe's).
Granny (Art's mother from Florida), Robert (Candice's father from California), Grandpa Buckley (Robert's dad), Maggie, Eden, and Regina (more later about Regina!)
Grandpa and Grandma Thomas (my parents from Florida), me, and my sister Loron (from Ontario).
Art, Micaiah, Harley and Marilyn (two of my sister's kids from Ontario. We missed you Jess!)
Darryl's is an eclectic restaurant. In addition to the carnival type theme, there was also a jail theme going on. Not sure how they relate, but they give tours for kids and the kids get to dress up as prisoners and be in jail. There is a part of the restaurant where people can sit in jail to eat.
Eden was trying to make a sad face because she was in jail.
The Wedding Morning
They rented a U-Haul to bring everything up to the venue.
The venue was a beautiful place in Stokesdale called the Longhouse. The wedding was outside, and thankfully, the weather was perfect.
I made the 300 flags for the bunting out of scrap fabric I had in my garage. I really wish I had had my camera when we were hanging it up because Hannah was up in the tree climbing all over it just like when she was a little girl.
Chris tied Silas's bow tie. How sweet is this?
My friend Regina. Oh my. What would I have done without her? I mean seriously! A few months ago as we were talking about wedding plans, we discussed how we really needed someone (or someones!) to help out with all the behind the scenes stuff and taking care of the kids etc. With my special needs kids, and all the things needed to do for the reception, like putting out drinks, keeping food platters filled, etc., I just didn't see how I could do all of that and still see/enjoy the wedding, plus be able to talk with guests. We bounced around a lot of ideas. Then we had the idea that maybe if we could fly my friend Regina down from New York that she might be willing to help out.
I met Regina online several years ago, right after we brought home Silas. Her daughter has the same basic health issues as Silas, and she has been a few months ahead of Silas in treatments and surgeries all along. We connected briefly about our kids, and then lost contact for a bit. Then my other good friend Gina reintroduced us and we hit it off. Regina is an awesome, funny, strong, compassionate, wise, gracious and wonderful woman. She has 18 children, 9 adopted. She can handle a houseful of people in her sleep with one hand tied behind her back. But with a houseful of kids even busier than mine, would she be able and willing to come down and help out for the wedding? She said yes!
And oh my, did she help. I can't even list all the things she did for us. It was so over and beyond all that I was hoping. Not only did she help with the kids and the arrangements during the wedding and reception, she also did the girls' hair for the wedding, helped kids get dressed, put children on the potty numerous times, folded laundry, did dishes, conversed with family and friends when there just wasn't enough of me to go around, organized, supervised, took care of kids, encouraged me and gave me tips for my house, cooked, cleaned, ....where does it end? I am just amazed and overwhelmed to have a friend who was willing to do so much for me. If I had not had her, I can't even imagine how I could have done it all. Well I do know; I just couldn't have. I am so thankful for her friendship. I am thankful to her, and I am thankful to her husband and children who allowed her to come stay with us for six days!
To the moon and back Regina Long!
The Before Wedding Photos
Marcus, Josh, Canaan, Tyler, Chris
Add Silas and the picture automatically becomes awesome. I love this one.
Kelly, Maggie, Candice, Nicole, Hannah
Micaiah, Isaac, Silas, Eden, Candice, Kiki, Maggie, Levi, Laz
I didn't see this until I saw the photos later and was really touched. When Canaan took Candice's hand, Candice asked Silas to come over and pray for them before the wedding. <3
Methinks he approves!
The flower girls tossed popcorn as they walked down the aisle.
And during the ceremony, Kiki stood there munching on it.
Isaac took his job very seriously.
Art officiated. He took his job very seriously too.
So of course there are some shots that I missed. You can't be everywhere at once. If anyone got a picture of Maggie and Silas coming down the aisle together, let me know. I'd love a copy.
Isaac doing the worm.
Shaved ice truck was a hit!
S'mores and hot dogs over the fire pit.
All the kids loved the "candy bar".
Cupcakes from Maxi B's. Fresh strawberry, vanilla, red velvet, and pink lemonade.
Cutting the cake.
I'm framing this one!
Throwing the Bouquet
Well somebody was motivated!
When I saw this picture of me laughing, I was not surprised to see that I was talking to my friend Marilyn from Florida.
I can't decide which version of this picture I like best!
Mr. and Mrs. Hadley coming from Florida was a surprise for Canaan and a treat for us all. Our families have known each other since Canaan was a baby and Marilyn was my homeschooling mentor. We lived in the same neighborhood and also went to the same church for a number of years.
The supper ofchampions: cupcakes, candy, watermelon on a stick and Coca-Cola.
Instead of rice or birdseed, we threw colorful sprinkles (aka jimmies).
A groomsman holding two cups full of sprinkles behind his back...
Canaan with two cups full of sprinkles in his pants.
And they lived happily ever after.
So happy for a wonderful day of family and friends, old and new, and love overflowing. So happy to see my son so happy, and to gain a daughter that we all love. Not so happy about the empty space in my house with them gone, but this is what we work for all these years, isn't it? So blessed and honored and and privileged and thankful to God to be a part of it all.
Luke 2:19 "But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart."