The band segued our walk back down the aisle into the the ‘cocktail hour’ area, where we did quick family photos and ran around trying to talk to every guest. I don’t think I’ve ever hugged so many people in one day before, and I found myself saying “thankyou!” as soon as someone greeted me, regardless of what they actually said! I’m really glad that we did the photos beforehand and we were able to spend this time with guests though – the entire day blew by so quickly, I think we would have missed out on really getting to talk to everyone if we didn’t have this time.
Just before it was time for lunch, The Boy and I served jasmine tea to our parents, grandparents and other important members of our families as a simplified and faster nod to a traditional tea ceremony. The Boy’s mum whispered what to say in my ear as I handed over the tea “[name/title], yum cha”, but I stumbled quite badly over the Chinese names. Oh well, I like to think they appreciated the effort anyway!
Having read enough stories about brides fainting or getting completely sloshed due to not eating, I made sure to get a decent plate of food from the buffet in. For some reason I couldn’t really stomach much meat and pretty much ate a plate of salad with a bit of pasta. I didn’t end up drinking much at all either. I went straight into hostess mode, so finished eating as quickly as possible and ran around to other tables making sure they were okay, had enough to eat, and were having fun.
Our speeches were short and sweet, including Miss T (and then me) breaking into tears whilst recounting our many years of friendship. Part of me wishes that I’d made a speech too, although it would pretty much be thanking everyone for helping me prepare for the day.
After the speeches we did our first dance, which was entirely not prepared for so we encouraged everyone to join us on the dance floor and sort of twirled around inexpertly for a while. Not being alone on the floor or having any dance steps to remember (I am the most uncoordinated person in the world) took a lot of the pressure off, so we just laughed and had fun through it.
The bouquet toss ended up being a bit of an afterthought – I wasn’t really planning on doing one, and half the guests had to leave right after the speeches so there weren’t a huge number of people left. I also couldn’t find my tossing bouquet that was so lovingly made for me, and ended up having to throw my real bouquet (sorry Miss J!). It was a bit of fun though, and the bouquet was claimed by Miss B who possibly wanted it the least. Oops!
It was such an amazing, magical day surrounded by so many wonderful people. I didn’t at all expect it to turn out to be the best day of my life so far – that seems to just be setting yourself up for disappointment – but it really did turn out that way.
Coming up next: details, advice in retrospect, Instax photos and a few other bits and pieces!
The last five photos were by my friend Peter Bui; the first lot of photos from my photographer, Anna Rose Photography.