Friday, December 19, 2014

The Best Wedding Ever*

A few months ago, my guy and I decided to make it official and get married.  There was no debate, no question, we were going to the registry office (similar to the Justice of the Peace in the US) and attempt to have the easiest, most relaxed day possible.  In Australia, you have to apply for an "intent to marry", then wait 30 days before the actual wedding day.  You go to the office of "Births, Deaths, and Marriages" (I'm not pregnant, and we're not dead, so gettin' married it is!), show your passport and/or birth certificate, sign a few papers, and schedule a day.  We booked for Sunday, the 14th of December.  At the time, I didn't realize that the exact date and time we'd get married, we'd have these super cool dates = 12.13.14 in America and 14.12.14 in Australia.  (Making that connection, I should never forget our anniversary, because I'm a girl who doesn't always remember important dates).

I challenged myself to spend less than $100 on my dress.  That was going to be tough in Australia, but I still thought I'd set the challenge anyway.  I went to a few stores, looked around, tried some stuff on.  Nothing.  Then, through the window of Dotti, I saw a dress that looked casual, comfortable, and it was even white (not that I had to wear white).  I tried it on, and guess WAS casual, comfortable, and $65!  I told the shopgirl** that it was for my wedding, and she gave me 10% off.  Bonus.  I had gold wedges already that would look perfect, and I designed my own necklace with smoky quartz, rutilated quartz and pearls to coordinate.

I reserved space at a pub in The Rocks (a pretty popular area in Sydney).  The pub is in a heritage building that was originally built in the 1800s.  They serve boutique type beers and yummy food.  Plus, I discovered this little gem when I joined a group of Texas A&M grads to watch a football game earlier this year.  The pub is owned by a couple, and the wife is an A&M grad herself.  We Aggies like to network and support each other.  (shameless plug: Harts Pub) I created a facebook event, invited folks, sat back and relaxed.

So, Sunday rolled around.  Neil's kids stayed with us the night before.  I got myself dressed.  He got himself dressed.  I had a chat with Astro about mommy & daddy getting married.  (Yes, I talk to my cats.  Yes, they understand.  Yes, I'm a crazy cat lady.)  It was all pretty easy.

 I rode to the ceremony with Neil's mum.  He drove his dad and kids.  We had a couple of close friends join us to be witnesses.  (In Australia, you're required to have two people over the age of 18 to serve as witnesses).  One of our witnesses has been such an amazing friend to the both of us that Neil credits her with the fact that we probably wouldn't be together today if she hadn't been there for us, supported us, advised us through a particularly rocky time in our relationship.  That was then, this is now......

We arrived all present and accounted for.  We got both sets of my parents on skype from Texas (awww the wonders of smartphones and technology).  We met the celebrant, went upstairs to the ceremony room, declared that we weren't related to each other, were over the age of 18, and legally not married to anyone else.  We said some vows, we exchanged some rings (handmade by Neil himself and provided by the best little best man/ring bearer ever), we signed the marriage certificate, the witnesses did too, we kissed, and TA DA!...we're married!  All this happened in about 15 minutes and cost about $500.

We went to the pub, were joined by approximately 40 people; a fun, loving, supportive, eclectic group.  I loved the fact that we were a multi-national crowd with Australian, American, English, Kiwi, Polish, Greek, Italian, and Eastern Europeans. Everything was totally laid back and casual.  I didn't have a photographer, but I did take selfies with all the guests.  A girlfriend of ours asked to bake a cake.  I was amazed when she showed up with a croque-en-bouche!  We may have almost set the place on fire with the sparklers, but it's all good.  And, I may have eaten all the caramelised sugar toffee that was drizzled on it.

A friend of mine described me as "(t)he most RELAXED and non traditional bride ever" and said it was "such a lovely afternoon".  I'm pretty happy with both of those descriptions.  And, I'm pretty happy with this guy of mine.  We have been through a lot, put each other through a lot, committed ourselves to fight for each other and our relationship, have grown into true and equal partners. Overall, it was the best wedding ever*, and I'm grateful to all of those that joined us to make it a wonderful day!

*admittedly, I'm slightly biased.
**I do not use shopgirl in a derogatory way because I am a shopgirl.  


  1. It does sound like you were the most relaxed bride. I'm not a fan of weddings and have never had to plan one of my own but I absolutely think simple is better and I love what you shared here I'm definitely taking note.

  2. You two are a gorgeous couple! I wish you all the happiness, laughter, and love your lives together can bring! <3

  3. CONGRATULATIONS!!! You look beautiful, I just love the dress. Best wishes for you both!

  4. This sounds like my type of wedding! They can get so out of hand and I don't think a wedding should leave you stressed and in debt. If my boyfriend and I ever decide to tie the knot, simple and relaxed will certainly be the way to go. Congratulations!

  5. Congratulations! It looks and sounds like it was a lovely day!

  6. what a beautiful day! i laughed at your BDM joke, i had to change my name with them and I was like.. i'm not pregnant, dying and i'm already married.. i had to get a new birth certificate and i was like but i was born 27 years ago! lol. your dress is gorgeous and damn $65 is a bargain!!

  7. So in my pre-baby life I was a wedding planner. I had one couple with a "cake" exactly like your "croque-en-bouche." She called them profiteroles. I've never seen them anywhere else.


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