I can't decide on a time...

jamie_mtMay 17, 2004

Well, our halloween wedding has been moved up to Aug. 20th, due to the necessity to stay here and have a wedding instead of eloping (long story). The wedding part doesn't bug me - we've agreed to a very small "immediate family-only" wedding in the backyard of my future in-laws (his dad is a wonderful gardener...Dahlias will be in bloom then), so there will be about about 10 people total, including us and the officiant. Very casual and laid back, no worries. Announcements will be sent out with pictures the following week to friends and relatives (my dad will take the pictures digitally, I will edit and print them, and make the announcements myself - very casual format). :-)

The only thing I can't decide on is the time of day to get married. It won't be a long ceremony at all - no processional or anything, just the exchanging of traditional vows and rings, and pronouncing us married, but I'd like to time it just before a meal. Since there will be so few of us, I think it would be nice to have a meal ready for immediately after the ceremony (we are not going to have a separate reception).

Late August here is typically bone dry and very hot...so mid-afternoon is *absolutely out*. So my choices are to do it in the morning, followed by a brunch, or in the evening around 7pm, followed by a late dinner. Either way, it will be very casual...I'm wearing a white skirt & jacket suit, and DF will wear a nice pair of slacks, shirt, and maybe a jacket (it's up to him). Our family is welcome to wear whatever they are most comfortable in - I won't be offended at seeing jeans if they'd like. LOL

So what do you think about time of day - is there a reason you'd pick one time over the other? My fiance doesn't care and neither does my side of the family...so this is pretty much up to me (and I have no strong feelings one way or the other either, which is why I'm asking you LOL). I will ask my MIL for her opinion too, of course. ;-)

Thanks! :-)

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>So my choices are to do it in the morning, followed by a brunch, or in the evening around 7pm, followed by a late dinner.>

I'd go with the evening. If you have it in the morning, the temp. will be going up, but at night it will be cooling down ,I would think : )

    Bookmark   May 17, 2004 at 2:08PM
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I don't have a clear preference, either, but could think of a couple of things you might consider to help you decide:

Will you be eating outside too? In my area, eating outside on a summer evening is asking for bug bites galore - so I'd go with a morning wedding in that situation. And morning might be cooler, too - even here in Minnesota, an August afternoon can be pretty hot, but the mornings are our best chance for cooler temps.

Also, maybe consider lighting and sun angle? Look at the location you'd have for the ceremony and see whether the sun would be at an unbearable angle at a certain time of day (i.e., would you or the guests be looking directly into the sun from wherever you'd be standing). Even for a short ceremony, this sort of thing could make it pretty uncomfortable, and is worth considering.

We had a morning ceremony followed by a luncheon, and wound up enjoying the fact that this left us all sorts of time that afternoon/evening to enjoy our first evening together. We checked in to our hotel, wandered around the shops a little, and had a leisurely dinner together. A later wedding/reception would have meant that we'd drop into bed at a very late hour. You might consider how you feel about that side of the timing.

Good luck making your decision!

    Bookmark   May 17, 2004 at 2:22PM
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How are you thinking of spending the wedding night?

I was really happy to have a night-time wedding but the wedding night was not the romantic alone time that some couples like to have. We went to bed at 4 am! If you are planning on spending the night in a hotel, in your new house if one or both of you is moving, or just romantically in the same old place, you probably want to do it in the morning.

Also, even though you're having a casual wedding, do you think you might be kind of nervous and keyed-up waiting for it to start? If so, waiting until late evening might be kind of rough on you.

Do any of the guests live far from the location? Are they the kind of people who don't like to drive at night? If so, morning might be better for them.

Are you planning on leaving for a honeymoon or a weekend away together? If so it would be nice to do it in the morning so you can have a "getaway" and have more time to spend on vacation.

Another consideration is the food - even though it is a small guest list, you can do a *spectacular* brunch (with drinks if you want them) for the same cost as a good dinner. Brunch can be a really fun meal.

If I was in your position, I'd do it in the morning. Then, I'd plan something fun for the afternoon/evening, either alone as a couple, or with the guests if they'd want to stay all day.

One thing I've heard from a lot of people, and it was true for me, is that they plan "couple stuff" and then end up having so much fun with their guests that they don't want to do it. They just want to be with their friends and family - it's pretty much a once-in-a-lifetime chance to have them all together.. I don't know if that would happen with such an intimate wedding, but it is a consideration.

    Bookmark   May 17, 2004 at 2:30PM
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Thank you all - very well-thought out responses! Bug bites are a huge consideration, thank you for bringing that up! I had assumed we'd eat outside, but will have to discuss that with FMIL. We won't be doing a honeymoon or anything...we'll wait until later for that. The most that might be happening that day is closing on our new house - that more depends on timing than anything else.

And of course we have to see when the officiant is available...

The sun angle really doesn't matter, since there are good places to stand for both us and the guests no matter where we are in the yard - we can change spots at the last minute if we need to. Both sets of parents and the siblings all live in town, so no worries about travel, and we see them all the time, so I really doubt we'll need to spend more time with them - the odds that we'll see them that weekend is probably pretty good anyways, and we see them all once a week or more even now. I dare say they will all have other stuff to do either before or after the wedding anyways. LOL

Reading through these responses and thinking about it some more, I think I'm leaning towards a morning time. I like the idea of a nice brunch, of it starting out cool and getting warmer, and of having everything done by early afternoon so we can all go hide from the heat in the A/C. That way if we want to set a house closing for the afternoon, it would be a nice wedding present to ourselves, and if we've already got the house, we can hang there if we want, go to a nice dinner that night, maybe curl up with a movie and some wine...that sounds like a really great way to end the day. :-)

Thanks again - that helps a lot!

    Bookmark   May 17, 2004 at 3:57PM
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I like the morning wedding idea, but do provide shade for guests, unless you know they all enjoy being outside in the sun.

Best of luck - sounds wonderful.

    Bookmark   May 17, 2004 at 4:35PM
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who will be preparing the food? Will one time over the other make that task easier for them? If you get a caterer (yes, even for 10 people; your family will get more flustered than you--or they--expect, believe me!), it shouldn't make much difference. If family members are insisting on doing it themselves (not unreasonable w/ 12 people to feed), how much time will they need beforehand?

And which meal or refreshment will be easier to prepare ahead of time, or in general? I think brunch would be--scrambled eggs can go in the oven the morning of; fruit salad can be cut up the night or afternoon before; muffins and quick breads can be frozen; etc.

My sis got married in the morning, and it was really lovely!

Given that you'll probably have a shorter ceremony than she did (you'll have what--vows only? Maybe the legal vows, and then informal vows to each other? Or a reading?), you don't even have to start that early.

and last but NOT least, which time of day do you and DF love most? Are you energetic, fresh, and optimistic in the morning, or bleary-eyed and wishing you were still asleep? Are you revved up and in the groove in the late afternoon or evening, or worn out?

Also, please do not underestimate the "hanging around and talking to each other at Jamie's wedding" effect. You keep brushing off the idea of the wedding as special--just another day, you seem to think. Wrong-o, my friend. It's going to be much more highly charged than you expect, probably even for you, but def. for your family members.

So, a morning wedding w/ a brunch could easily stretch into the warmth of the early afternoon--so be prepared w/ the AC.

    Bookmark   May 18, 2004 at 3:39PM
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LOL Tally Sue...we are very laid back, relaxed people - yes, it's a special day, but *we* will be leaving after the meal, regardless of who hangs around. In our opinion, it should be our *private day* rather than a huge "thing", so we are only doing this because my parents can't afford to travel, and his mom "needs" a wedding. Otherwise, we'd still be going somewhere with just his brother as a witness. If it could be just us, it would actually mean more to us - having to plan and include/work around other people just makes it less of an emotional time for us (neither of us is terribly emotional, and we both have issues with showing emotion in front of others, so we will be "in check" that day with guests attending, and not able to really be "ourselves"). I know that's hard for people to understand, but that's just who we are. So this whole gathering thing actually makes it less special for us, unfortunately.

My DF keeps threatening to run off anyways if his mom tries to change our plans...so I need to make sure this stays very small and low-key just so she actually *gets* her wedding. LOL

I haven't decided about the food yet - I want his mom to have a "job" that she has complete control over (if she wants one, of course), so she gets to choose whether she wants to plan the meal (catering, cooking, potluck, whatever), or do the decorations (or nothing - it's all up to her, though I bet she will want to do something).

The judge is already booked at night on the 20th, so we will either have it at 11am on the 20th (that's what I would really like), or 7pm on the 19th (if we need to work around his mom's concert flight - don't know which day it is yet). I'm going to call FMIL tomorrow and talk things over with her so we can pin down something definate, though I have both times reserved just in case.

Either of those times will work just fine for me - 11am isn't too early, we can have a nice lunch, and do whatever after that. 7pm is fine too...we'll just be liberal with the bug spray or eat inside, and that will be just great.

Vows will be just the traditional vows and exchanging of the rings, no readings, no music, no personal vows (we aren't emotional enough for that LOL)...just very basic, quick and casual. It will probably take about 10 minutes start to finish. :-)

I'm quite confident it will all work out - can't really fail with such a simple plan (I refuse to get stressed out over any of it!!). ;-)

    Bookmark   May 18, 2004 at 7:06PM
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Go for the morning at 11:00. I wish I could have talked my daughter into that. You will have the rest of the day to relax and visit with people, plus more time after everyone is gone. A brunch would be lovely after the ceremony, minosas, bagels, danish,egg casseroles, ham/bacon, muffins...the choice is endless.

    Bookmark   May 19, 2004 at 12:21PM
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another advantage to 11am--enough time to get ready in a leisurely way, but not enough to get all emotional--nervous, resentful, whatever. Though, of course, you don't HAVE emotions (wink!)

I think you just might surprise yourself. It's a rare thing, getting married. There's NOTHING in my life that was in any way similar.

    Bookmark   May 19, 2004 at 2:33PM
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I think it's great that you want to do this for them, but if you really want to elope and be married privatly why can't you do that and have another ceremony for the family?

When hubby & I got married we went to Cypress Gardens. I left both of my kids home. This wedding was for us. We did plan to come back & "renew our vows" with family present but when his family didn't even send cards or call after we sent out photos, we threw that idea out the window.

Cypress was beautiful, we had the wedding of our dreams and laughed the whole time. I would do it again in a heartbeat!

    Bookmark   May 20, 2004 at 7:52AM
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I think 11:00 will be perfect! We got married at noon - I was really upset about it at first, because it seemed like such a strange time. We were at a resort with our families, and that was when the officiant was available. In the end it really worked out well - all the girls had time to get ready, and the boys had the morning to play around. It hadn't gotten hot yet, and the sun was in the perfect position for pictures. We had a nice lunch afterwards, and the rest of the day/night to enjoy being married. Good luck - you'll love having a small intimate wedding, no matter what time of day!

    Bookmark   May 20, 2004 at 11:35AM
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Tally Sue, you crack me up. LOL Of course we *have* emotions...we just don't like *sharing* them with others! ;-)

Roselvr, we just really can't do that to his mom. Well, I guess *I* can't - he seems to think he can. But he thought I wouldn't get along with his mom too, and here we are, getting along just fine so far. So that shows what *he* knows, eh? LOL But FMIL is a *very* emotional person (she freely admits that), and would be absolutely devastated if she couldn't be at the actual original ceremony (her words). And really, it's such a small thing for her to ask - she's not being demanding about who we invite, or how big/small, or any of the details...all she asks is that we *have* a wedding, and that she be included somehow. It would be pretty heartless of me to deny her that, don't you think? A small compromise to start things out on the right foot - I can handle that. I wouldn't want to do things twice anyways. ;-)

In any case, she and I decided that Sept. 4th would be better - a Saturday, at 11am, and she said the dahlias would be better then (she loves that we want to get married in her garden - score for me! LOL). So if I can get an officient for that day/time, that will be perfect. I really, really like the idea of the 11am wedding - and we both agreed that a lunch afterwards would be really nice - so that's the plan...I'm checking on the officient today. :-)

    Bookmark   May 20, 2004 at 12:50PM
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I'm w/ you, Jamie, as you know. I think it would be heartless not to offer her the opportunity to be there.

Plus, it would be stupid.
The wedding itself is one day--you'll be related to MIL for the rest of your life.

(and I'm w/ you, too, on not wanting to do things twice--what, you're gonna fake it the second time? As a guest or family member, I wouldn't want to be at a fake wedding ceremony, not even really a "renewing of vows" taking place so soon after the ceremony--it's clearly just theatrics. Not that that's horrible; it just seems silly. As a family member or friend, the point is to witness THE wedding, not A wedding. or a performance)

    Bookmark   May 20, 2004 at 3:23PM
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