Tuesday, November 9, 2010

THE Wedding, go get your coffee, its a long post!

WHERE do I start? What a beautiful wonderful, fun -filled, God-blessed wedding!! Our dear friends :mom Debbie and daughter s Colleen and (bridesmaid) Amy got in from Louisiana Friday afternoon . Its always too long between visits with them but so nearly perfect when we an be together! Debbie did so much to help me get things done for the wedding when all my regular "life stuff" would not slow down or allow itself to be sidelined for a day or two and for that I am so eternally and publicly grateful! The rehearsal was a lot of fun. Not knowing how the horses were going to respond to the bridesmaids sitting side saddle added an element of uncertainty, having borrowed several horses who really didn't know any of us at all, added another element of the same. My husband and sons and son-in-law-to-be had worked hard on dismounting platforms for the bride and her maids so that getting on the horses and perching side saddle would be hopefully modest and simplified as well as dismounting nicely too. Practice went well, but there were no dresses involved to test it all out. We'd have to wait for the actual wedding for that!!


Esther's future father-in-law brought his huge smoker cooker out to our farm to prepare his awesome feast of a rehearsal dinner. Smells of delectable sorts filled our nostrils as we practiced coming in and going out, ran through the ceremony itself and I worked on my solo. The wind was blowing so ferociously that I found myself competing with it for the sounds coming through the microphone!!

It was hilly on Friday after noon as the sun began to set and we were all wondering about how we'd fare Saturday in sleeveless dresses!! A hard frost was predicted for Friday night and that too was a bit unsettling, but we had all been praying for one more beautiful November day in Oklahoma and trusting that God would show favor.

OH HE DID HE DID HE DID!!!!!!!!!!!! There was frost on the ground at 7 AM. By 8:30 on my last run to Walmart, the frost was gone and warmth was surrounding us! NOT a loud in the sky, not much wind, we were euphoric over the background for the wedding!!

Foods were being cooked, all the decorations and accessory items reached their destinations, the boquets had been made the night before except for Esther's which was assembled and tied in yellow, green and white streaming ribbons right before the ceremony. My bedroom turned into the Grand Dressing Room with boxes of donuts and 2 liter bottles of Dr Pepper filling my bath tub and make up and hair spray from all over the place found its way to my double sink.

Stories and memories, we were forbidden to tell about anything which might make Esther boo hooey and thus melt her make -up, well except me.

I HAD to hug my beautiful daughter and remind her that almost 20 years ago, a baby girl named Esther Miriam was born 5 weeks early and on her due date proper was admitted to the hospital nearly dead from RSV after she'd stopped breathing in our home. I did PR on my tiny daughter and then drove her to the hospital with my hand on her chest to make sure she'd continued to breathe. She had seen the doctor the day before, we'd thought she was croupy, but that next day she just went downhill so quickly. It was right after I'd called the doctor to tell him to meet us at the ER that Esther stopped breathing. My husband was sitting in the next room rocking toddler Malachi and I called to him as I was dashing out the door, "we are on our way to the ER. I will all you later." For the next three days they gave us virtually no hope for Esther. She had gotten THAT sick THAT fast. We had refused allow life support for her because they had told us she would be so brain damaged form loss of oxygen and we didn't want to start something that would keep Esther artificially alive and away from Heaven or that really could not be disconnected at some time later. Our prayer was that God heal Esther: on earth or Eternally. We took a lot of flak for that. A lot. This was the Intensive care Unit where I was working and my co-workers were not supportive of our decision. DAY FOUR was our miracle day!! Esther began to rally and respond to the meds and for the first time the staff verbalized hope for our precious tiny baby girl. On DAY TEN she came home and has truly never been sick a day sine !!!

We knew that God had spared her life in an unmistakable way, for "such a time as this" and her wedding morning called for a re-telling of that story.

THE WEDDING

Was so beautiful start to finish I am really not  able to describe it!! Lots of guests filled our pasture facing the barn, music filled the air mixed with happy voices and the whinnying of 6 horses awaiting their part in the ceremony.

Esther and Casey didn't want a traditional "Unity candle" but instead wanted to signify the blending of their pasts and future by each of them having a Mason jar of sand from their home town to pour into a common container as part of the ceremony.

Cindy, Casey's mom and I carried in the Mason jars of Western Oklahoma sand and Southwest Louisiana sand together and that started the wedding.One by one the bridesmaids rode in from the back side of the barn in plain sight of the guests, to the back of the seated guests. At that point the groomsmen who had led the side saddle-riding maids in, helped them dismount and then walked them to the front of the barn where Casey and our Pastor were waiting. It was so BEAUTIFUL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Sweet Grand baby Charlie was the ring bearer, all decked out in his jeans, boots, wide belt with "dinner plate " buckle and his mini-Stetson , Casey's nieces were Flower girls :each one totally adorable in her own right! The completion of their flower petal scattering duties completed, Esther and Charlie began their approach. She was so radiant, her daddy so proud and so on-the-verge-of-tears...........he helped her off her beloved mare Sugar and walked his daughter down to present her to her groom. The usual question of "Who presents this woman ?" (NOT GIVES...we don't are for that wording) was followed by questions to Casey's parents and to us. We were asked if we as the parents would continue to support and encourage our children to help strengthen their marriage , pray for them and continue to guide them in God's principles. THAT was a cool thing I had not heard in a wedding before.

The vows and message were so personalized to Esther and Casey and the message about the sand was precious. As they blended their sand together, I sang the song "Love is Not a Fight, but its Something Worth Fighting For" from the movie "Fire Proof" to them (occasionally using the lyric sheet to shield the mike from the rushing winds!!) and then my daughter and her new husband were introduced for the first time as Mr and MRS Casey Rogers. They strode out to the awaiting horses, Esther looked at Sugar, looked at herself in her lovely poufy wedding gown , thought for a second and hopped up on that Paint mare as if her dress was a favorite pair of cruel Girl jeans and in a flash was ready to ride! NO more side saddle for MY cowgirl! Casey was beaming and amazed as he watched his bride. He was heard to exclaim, "THAT'S my WIFE!!" as they rode off across the pasture hand in hand, stopping for an occasional kiss! We gathered in the barn for family photos after the horses had all been tied up and put into stalls. The smaller children loved being at a wedding that turned into a petting zoo!!

We all moved from the pasture to the back yard where Gideon and Eddie ( Casey's dad) had prepared pork tenderloin on the smoker along with grilled potatoes and green beans. My dear friend Lynn and her mom Wanda had baked home made rolls for us and those rolls were a super addition to an already wonderful meal!

The wedding cake. WHAT an I say?? Casey's Aunt Shelley did the cake as a gift for the couple and it was probably the most fabulous cake I have ever seen anywhere!! Going along with the cowboy theme, the cake was decorated with cowboy boots as a tier platform separator, the frosting looked like lasso rope around the cake tiers, and the icing which decorated the sides of the cake looked like tooled leather on a very expensive pair of boots. A few scattered sunflowers added to the cowboy theme, and the Groom's cake was decorated to look like staked hay bales. AMAZING cake art!!!!!

I feel like I am using so many superlatives, but this WAS a superlative day!!!

We ate, we danced, we laughed long into the dark hours before the last of the guests went on their way. Later after as much as could be cleaned up , was cleaned up, Debbie and I sat back to bask in the completion of the event. I want to mention here too that Debbie held Daniel for me when I went up to sing. She had noticed that he does not respond to very much, very often, but she told me after I'd come back to my seat, that as SOON as I began to sing, his countenance changed. He began to move, his eyes began searching the air for my voice and he began to sing with me. She was so touched by his response to his mommy who was "out there somewhere" and his efforts to locate me and to join his sweet baby roar with my song.

I also didn't mention that as we were rehearsing Friday, I saw Esther talking on the phone as she rode her horse into the pasture and that she kept talking as her daddy led her down the "aisle". I thought "WHAT IS SHE DOING???" This is her WEDDING REHEARSAL!!" Well, her big brother Caleb who was unable to be with us due to military commitments called to hat with his little sister. That made a phone call in the middle of rehearsal quite all right!!! Oldest big brother Joshua currently in Afghanistan sent his best wishes via Face Book.

My heart is full, my daughter and her new husband are so full of love for each other, its pretty nearly tangible! Something more!!! He had realized at the end of their pre-martial counseling sessions that he had never actually asked the Lord to be his personal Savior. He'd gone to church, been a good person, tried to do what was right.... but had not been taught , and had not realized there was so much more!!! Realizing that this was really imperative and something he wanted to be sharing with his wife, he prayed a salvation prayer and announced to our church the next week that having received Jesus as his Savior he wanted to follow the Lord in baptism BEFORE the wedding. We had a Baptismal service for Casey last week to meet with his wishes.

Photos will follow. There are SO many really share-worthy ones, I'm not sure where to start. If you happen to be FB friends with my dear neighbor-friend Lori Steffy, you an see hundreds of photos on her face book page!!!

1 comment:

Mom to 9 Blessings! said...

HOW AWESOME!

God is so faithful

Can't wait to meet you all!

Love you so much!
Jill