My Best Friend’s Wedding (And a Carnival Round-Up)

Last weekend, my dear friend got married. I got married at 21, and it was the difference between our experiences that prompted the Perspectives on Life and Love Carnival:

At 34, she knows herself so much better than I did back then, when I was just 21. She’s entering marriage with the wisdom of another decade and a half–all the wisdom I didn’t even know I was missing. And she spent her 20s–and some of her 30s–living her own life, while I was racking up the wedded years and raising babies.

It’s not better to get married at 34, or 21–or anytime before, after, or in between–but it’s certainly different. And while it’s my dear friend’s wedding that’s gotten me all reflective about life and love, age isn’t the only variable. We all have our own unique experiences with life and love.

The fog burned off just in time for the ceremony. It couldn’t have been a more gorgeous day in small-town Northern California.
The laid-back bride had her bridesmaids pick up their bouquets from the farmers’ market. Beautiful!
wedding reception fit the brides' personality perfectly
The bridesmaids set up the reception hall Saturday morning, laying the tables with white linens, fresh flowers, and cheery milkglass tumblers. The tumblers were seconds, and finding the flaw in each one was like a treasure hunt.

It was a wonderful wedding, which fully reflected both the personalities of the bride and groom and the place they are in their lives–and their relationship.

The bride and groom chose a whopping 5 readings for their ceremony, and each held a special meaning for the couple. My favorite reading was The Truelove by David Whyte (from The House of Belonging). I wish I could share the whole poem here, but this excerpt gives you a taste of why it was so perfect for their ceremony:

There is a faith in loving fiercely,
the one who is rightfully yours,
especially if you have
waited years and especially
if part of you never believed
you could deserve this
loved and beckoning hand
held out to you this way…

Last Friday, many of you shared stories from your own unique experiences with life and love. All of the stories were well worth reading, and I encourage you to click around and visit them. Here are a few excerpts from your stories.

HopefulLeigh | Another First Date

I’m on another first date. It’s going well. Butterflies zip through my stomach as I consider I might like this guy. We’re laughing and trading stories. I’m confident, at the top of my game. He thinks my jokes are funny and I find him intriguing. I fiddle with my chandelier earring, pushing the beads back and forth. A rosary of sorts.

Becoming Substantial | He Chose to Stay

I’ll cut to the chase. Everyone who knows me knows this: we got married because I got pregnant. 
Yep, that’s right. We were living together in a cottage in a resort town, working for a nearby restaurant. We were hired by a work and travel program and housed together, no questions asked. He came from South America, I came from Northern Indiana, and we were in love


Faith Permeating Life | 3 Reasons I Didn’t Get Married “Too Young”

The point of all this is not to say that 23 is (or is not) a good age at which to get married. It’s that age by itself is not the only factor in whether you picked a “good” time to get married. And that it’s ridiculous to try to tell someone they got married “too young” when age is simply a proxy for the factors that go into a long-lasting, healthy, happy relationship.

Leelee Writes | You’re Not Next

Suddenly, marriage was not just something that could happen eventually. It was a possibility.

It was a possibility that was becoming more and more desirable.  The only thing was wanting it to happen was a far cry from it being a realistic possibility.  The more I allowed these thoughts to overtake my mind, the harder the burden of disappointment became.  To be reassured again and again by well meaning friends who would tell me, “You’re next,” only to watch them and countless others reach that coveted stage of life before me.

Barefoot on 45th | Doubting an Engagement

The doubting didn’t start until a few days after we arrived home from the Big Apple, where he’d swept me off my feet with an engagement under the Rockefeller Christmas Tree. My mom wanted to go look at wedding venues, and friends were already asking what type of dress I wanted to wear. Meanwhile, behind a big grin, I was panicked.

Malisa Price | I Didn’t Need to Date Anyone Else

A friend recently asked me how I knew Anthony was the one. I told her that when I wasn’t spending time with him, I was thinking about him. That no matter how much time we spent together, I didn’t get sick of him. And that he knew the real me, but still stayed around.

Those are just a few of the many wonderful stories shared in the Perspectives on Life and Love Carnival! Head over to the carnival page to click around and visit some others!

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  1. Tim says:

    Loved those excerpts, Anne. The pics from your friend’s wedding day look great too. Where was that? As a life-long NorCal guy, I bet I’ve either been to that town or close by.


    P.S. I have another guest post up today. It’s at Jenny Rae Armstrong’s place (linked through my name above), and concerns chess, track meets and choices. Hope you get a chance to look it over.

      • Tim says:

        I love Arcata! In fact, I almost went to Humboldt State University (which is right there). Redwoods and the Pacific, what could be better? I’m south and inland a bit from there, near Sacramento, but it’s still northern California and a wonderful place to be. I was born in San Francisco, so this whole region is in my blood.

        • Anne says:

          Yes! My friend lives right there by campus! It seems like such a wonderful place to live. I only wish we’d had a few more days to explore. I didn’t even get off the plane in San Francisco. Next time!

  2. Pingback: My Best Friend’s Wedding (And a Carnival Round-Up) | UK wedding blog
  3. Lesley says:

    Thanks for linking to my post, Anne. I loved the prompt and appreciate the work you put into making this happen. Glad you had a great time in Nor Cal. I live in Sacramento and we spent Saturday in San Francisco to escape the blazin’ heat. 105 today!

    • Anne says:

      Lesley, I just couldn’t believe how much the temperature varied when we traveled a paltry 5 miles. I’ve never experienced anything like that climate! It was 105 in Sacramento, really? Crazy! It didn’t break 66 where we were on the coast. (Glad you could head down to San Fran to escape!)

  4. Karina Elizabeth says:

    This is great! I too expect to be an “older” bride and have some great friends who are approaching their 10 year anniversaries. It is amazing to see how we all grow in different, but good ways, whatever our situations.

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