Friday, April 17, 2009

Homeward Bound.

All Rights Reserved. © Wedding Thrift 2009.

We’re on our way to Detroit to take care of some wedding business. Separate but together: Jake flew out a few days ahead of me, and now it’s my turn. I am so excited for Jake to spend some solid time with my parents; he has been looking forward to some quality time with them for weeks. Since he arrived, I am told that they already have had some nice conversations, cooked dinner together, laughed, and gardened. I’m jealous.

Since deciding to get married, Jake has become even closer with my parents and it’s obvious that he is enjoying his “new” family. “New” in quotes because he’s already known them for years. But something about openly committing to be a part of my life has only served to strengthen the bond between them, and I have so enjoyed watching that openness unexpectedly grow. Sometimes the best parts about getting married are the things you didn’t expect or consider.

I think it helps that my parents—contrary to the meddling stereotype—have been very hands-off with the wedding planning. They respected our decisions from the beginning and only ever (rarely) questioned things in a pragmatic way, such as asking whether we think it’s a good idea to have a late lunch instead of dinner (our wedding is on a Sunday) so that guests can catch flights home in the evening if they need to get back to work. The key is that they ask us what we want and think, and offer an opinion only when asked, but then defer to our choices without any pressure or guilt whatsoever. I know it’s unusual, but that’s my parents. They are awesome.

While I was busy at work and play in New York, Jake already accomplished some things in Detroit:
  • Jake insists on building the Chuppah for our ceremony, so he searched for materials to build the Chuppah. Quite fortuitously, there was recently a storm in my parent’s neighborhood, which left many large branches on the ground. Jake wanted to use only natural materials, and as my Dad pointed out, “you can’t get more natural than that!” We’ll see what they were able to scrounge up.
  • He went to two bakeries to taste cakes and get prices. Since I am not really that into the cake, this was a perfect thing for him to do. As long as the batter is chocolate, the decoration simple, not hideous or gaudy, and the price low, I’m good.
  • He went to take a look at the hotel from where we will likely get discount rooms for guests. My parents already generously visited the hotel previously at our request, but Jake is checking out the room that was not available to see when my parents visited the hotel.
  • Jake met with the band we are probably going to hire. He met them at our wedding venue (a public park), discussed the music and the potential set up in the pavilion area, and they gave Jake a contract for us to look over.
Plus, we have a busy few days ahead of us, once I arrive:
  • We have a menu tasting with our chosen (super great!) caterers. Yum, can’t wait!
  • We have a cake tasting preceding our menu tasting, from the same catering company, different department. Our caterer humorously exclaimed, “Who says you can’t have dessert first!”
  • We get to meet with our Rabbi face to face (our last meeting was on Skype!), and discuss some of the exciting details of the ceremony. Our Rabbi is such a nice and warm man, we really enjoy talking with him. He doesn’t put any pressure on us to do anything particular, and always says, “there is no typical [Thing X] or [Thing Y].” He really wants to get to know us and make the ceremony personal.
  • We are going to go by our park venue and take more measurements, discuss where everything will go, and just spend some quality time there together, fantasizing about what it will be like on July 19th, with our friends and family surrounding us.
  • And most importantly, Saturday night we have a date night in Detroit since my parents had preplanned a dinner party at a friend’s house before they knew we were coming. Greek Town, here we come! Mmmmmm.
One of the challenges in hosting your wedding out of town is that you can’t just pop in to take care of things or easily meet with vendors in person. But one of the benefits is that when you do visit there, you get a lot of stuff done in a short amount of time and get a lot accomplished! This trip really makes me feel like everything we had talked about is finally coming together. Ahhhh.

Detroit…here I come!

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