Pictures by http://www.photographybysuz.co.uk/ Please ask if you would
like to use
I was a very nervous bunny the night before the wedding and barely
slept a wink, relying on the soft tones of late night Radio 4 coming
through my earphone to try and lull me in to some kind of sleep.
I woke up at 7am, unable to sleep any longer and crept downstairs to
the room where my parents were staying. I snuck in between them, like
I used to do when I was a child, something that is no mean feat these
days, and had a quiet conversation about the day ahead with my Mum.
When the bathroom was free, I showered, and put on my lovely wedding
undies, and the special wedding dressing gown I had bought for
wondering around in that morning, all white and broiderie anglaise.
I was quite concerned about the weather that morning as it went from
grey to sunny to cloudy, but I soon forgot about it as the hairdresser
arrived and chaos descended.
My chief bridesmaid and allround awesome person Jess arrived just
before the hairdresser and was very good at calming my nerves and
making sure I'd not forgotten anything!
There was a massive production line of bridesmaids, mum and gran all
getting their hair and makeup done in my gran's kitchen, and it was a
bit surreal to be surrounded by all that girlyness in a kitchen!
Once my hair was done, I milled about a bit waiting for the flowers to
arrive, whilst lots of people rushed around me getting ready. I love
my Dad's pride of Ireland kilt, and when the flowers did come, I was
over the moon. They were so much prettier than I could have imagined.
I loved the texture of all the greens and contrasts of the colours. In
fact I loved them so much that I bearly put them down all night, and
they are still going a week later!
Putting my dress on made me start to feel a bit nervous and tearful
again as suddenly I looked like a real bride. I was a bit annoyed at
first that I couldn't get my veil in my hair, but once it was in it
worked fine. I'm not really sure what I was nervous about, just
feeling a bit odd. I suppose it was because it was an end of an era in
someways, and a very big occasion.
Suz, one of our photographers had popped in in the morning to take
some pictures of us getting ready and came back to take some pictures
of me and my parents, my sisters and other bridesmaids and my
grandparents with the wedding car before we set off.
Our wedding car was a wedding present from Tom's old housemate
Twinkle. His dad has this lovely 1933/34 Austin that he restored from
a wreck over 9 years. It's lovely inside too, and Alan, the dad,
helped put me at my ease and dealt with my veil etc...
Dad and I set off in the car, and whilst we were going along he gave
me a letter in which he included some of the lines from this song:
But I loved her first and I held her first
And a place in my heart will always be hers
From the first breath she breathed
When she first smiled at me
I knew the love of a father runs deep
And I prayed that she'd find you someday
But it still hard to give her away
I loved her first
which of course made me cry, and I had to use my Dad's hanky to mop up
There's something about a Dad's hanky that makes it all better.
We had to drive around for a bit as we were running bang on time, but
our guests were not. There was another wedding going on in the URC
church opposite our church, and it appears some of our guests had gone
to the wrong place.
Once we were allowed to arrive, it was a case of arranging my veil and
getting in the right order for the procession. I had been feeling a
bit less nervous, and seeing all the lovely ushers and usherettes, and
Rich the best man being organised made me feel very happy.
When we were queued up in the corridor at the back of the church,
Simon, our old uni chaplain came to say hellp and prayed with us
before we went in, and suddenly the music was playing and it was time
to walk down the aisle.
My music - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KyWOIKCtjiw
The page boys and bridesmaids went in before me and I was amazed at
how well everyone did especially the little ones. As dad and I walked
down, I was very overwhelmed by the sheer number of people, and my
hands were shaking! It made my day to see people like my best friends
from school Amey and Tim smiling at me as I walked down along with all
our other friends and family.
By the time I made it to Tom and Simon down the end, I could see Tom
looking nervous too, which made it all a bit better.
Then it was time to get married. The service went beautifully, with
Simon making lots of jokes which helped put both of us at our ease,
and Graham, the curate at our church praying lovely prayers.
Our friends Andy and Mel read bible readings for us, and Chris Todd
read Yeat's poem "Had I the Heaven's Embroidered Cloths"
Reading: 1 John 4: 12 - 21 - Melanie Brockless
No one has ever seen God; if we love one another, God lives in us, and
his love is perfected in us.
By this we know that we abide in him and he in us, because he has
given us of his Spirit. And we have seen and do testify that the
Father has sent his Son as the Saviour of the world. God abides in
those who confess that Jesus is the Son of God, and they abide in God.
So we have known and believe the love that God has for us.
God is love, and those who abide in love abide in God, and God abides
in them. Love has been perfected among us in this: that we may have
boldness on the day of judgement, because as he is, so are we in this
world. There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear; for
fear has to do with punishment, and whoever fears has not reached
perfection in love. We love because he first loved us. Those who say,
???I love God???, and hate their brothers or sisters,are liars; for those
who do not love a brother or sister whom they have seen, cannot love
God whom they have not seen. The commandment we have from him is this:
those who love God must love their brothers and sisters also.
Reading: John 2: 1 - 12 - Andrew Treharne
On the third day there was a wedding in Cana of Galilee, and the
mother of Jesus was there. Jesus and his disciples had also been
invited to the wedding. When the wine gave out, the mother of Jesus
said to him, ???They have no wine.???
And Jesus said to her, ???Woman, what concern is that to you and to me?
My hour has not yet come.??? His mother said to the servants, ???Do
whatever he tells you.??? Now standing there were six stone water-jars
for the Jewish rites of purification, each holding twenty or thirty
Jesus said to them, ???Fill the jars with water.??? And they filled them
up to the brim. He said to them, ???Now draw some out, and take it to
the chief steward.??? So they took it.
When the steward tasted the water that had become wine, and did not
know where it came from (though the servants who had drawn the water
knew), the steward called the bridegroom and said to him, ???Everyone
serves the good wine first, and then the inferior wine after the
guests have become drunk. But you have kept the good wine until now.???
Jesus did this, the first of his signs, in Cana of Galilee, and
revealed his glory; and his disciples believed in him.
After this he went down to Capernaum with his mother, his brothers,
and his disciples; and they remained there for a few days.
Reading: The Cloths of Heaven by WB Yeats - Christopher Todd
Had I the heavens' embroidered cloths,
Enwrought with golden and silver light, The blue and the dim and the
dark cloths Of night and light and the half-light, I would spread the
cloths under your feet: But I, being poor, have only my dreams; I have
spread my dreams under your feet; Tread softly because you tread on my
During the marriage itself, as I looked at Tom and made our vows, I
felt much much better, and it was a lovely moment to be just looking
at him, with all the crowds melting away.
Simon's sermon started out explaining how much of a surprise our
relationship was, and recounted some funny uni stories, along with
some pictures on the screens at church. He told us to follow Jesus
first as a couple, to accept the support of our friends and families
to strengthen our marriage, and to remember what it was that drew us
together in the first place. He ended it with presenting me with a
First Lady Boldrewood Tunnel Soc hoodie to match Tom's President one,
something that he must have been planning for ages.
I loved singing the hymns loudly and seeing all the happy places of
our friends and family. At the end of the service, my dear friend
Alex, who I lived with at uni, blessed us in Hebrew with the Preistly
Blessing from Numbers:
The LORD bless you and keep you
The LORD make His face to shine upon you, and be gracious to you.
The LORD lift up His countenance upon you, and give you peace.
Then it was on to signing the register, and whilst we did this, we had
hidden beer under seats, and my sister Ellie, and friend John lead
singing of some of our favourite hymns, a la Beer and Hymns at
Greenbelt. - http://www.greenbelt.org.uk/blog/2010/08/beer-and-hymns-and-cashew-nuts-and-o...
Some people managed to get their beer open and once we had posed for
the photos, and I had offcially in the eyes of UK law signed my name
as Alex Jones for the last time, we joyously left the building to the
strains of Jubilate Everybody, getting faster and faster and
Part 2 to follow!