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Amanda and Jedd Willis
– photo by Erin McCracken

My family’s Wedding Season, as my sister Madeline has dubbed it,  is over, and the confetti is settling.  Amanda Harris (my niece) and Jedd Willis were married on May 26, and Rachel Silliman (my daughter) and Bret Aaker on June 30.  The weddings, like the couples, were very different; but both unions were sources of great happiness for the brides and grooms and for those of us who love them.  I have so much to say about Wedding Season that I’ll have to do it in installments.  This is Part One.  And let me just say that my musings will not necessarily be in chronological order.  On something this big, I find that a more stream of consciousness approach works much better.

The first “official” photo of newlyweds Rachel Silliman Aaker and Bret Aaker from the wedding photographer

Rachel and Bret’s Wedding
One thing I’ve learned as I contemplated writing about the week of my daughter’s wedding is that it’s difficult for me to blog without photographs.  My role as mother of the bride, or as we call it, MOB, limited my ability to walk around shooting pictures of everything.  In retrospect, I wish I had photographed more of the casual moments when no one would have cared that I was poking a camera into her face.  Ah, well, the lifelong list of lost photo ops is long.  I did take some.  As we go along, I’ll illustrate with those taken by others and  with the ones I did take.

The wedding party as depicted by flower-girl daughter Lucy Aaker, age 7

The wedding party as depicted by daughter and flower girl Frances Aaker, age 7

So, the wedding.  First of all, in my mind I’m calling it our Big Fat American Wedding.  Not original, I know, but the description definitely gives you the flavor of  its social complexity.  But first some general statements:

  • After a year of planning, the wedding event was beautiful, happy, and as flawless as these things can be.
  • In spite of all surrounding chaos before, during, and in the aftermath of the wedding, Rachel and Bret were the sanest, calmest bride and groom I’ve ever seen .
  • Many people contribute to the success of such an event and, more importantly, such a union.

Frannie and Lucy Aaker strewing petals along the bridal path
– photo by Amanda Harris Willis

By way of follow-up to my earlier post about the dresses I made for Frannie and Lucy,  here’s Amanda’s picture of the girls as they led the wedding procession.

Since the MOB role prevented me from taking photos during the ceremony, I’ll refer you for now to the wonderful images posted by Rachel’s cousin Emily Gibson on her flickr account.  Her video of the dancing is especially appealing and features the children, the flower-girl dresses, and the bride and groom (not necessarily in order of importance). And here’s her image of the ceremony with the bride’s sister Rebecca officiating and Bret’s son, Henry serving as best man.

More to come on Wedding Season…. I warned you about the randomness.