Everything in the temple was, of course, beautiful and wonderful. Our laughs came in with the game of Musical Chairs for the mothers. My mom took a seat next to the couch the bride and groom sit on before the sealing. Then someone thought she was supposed to sit on the other side of the couch, so she switched. Charlotte's mom came in and was directed to a seat on the couch. Everyone thought that was strange, didn't say anything. She finally concluded that she was supposed to be in a chair on the other side of the couch and moved there. Eric and I thought back to when we were married there and remembered the seating arrangement (not that it matters) was different when we were there. Then the bride and groom came in and were directed to specific sides of the couch and the mothers had to change seats again so they were sitting by their child. Everyone got a pretty good laugh out of all the arranging.
The sealer did a great job (as they all do) and gave wonderful advice. It was fantastic to see my little brother looking so happy and so ready to be married. I never thought I'd see the day. After the ceremony was over we all went downstairs into the waiting room. We were supposed to go to the foyer to keep the inside of the temple as reverent as possible, but Eric and I were the first ones out and wanted to go out with people we knew. We didn't quite make it to the foyer and all the rest of my family just stayed there, too. Oops. We finally did make it out to the foyer after we waited for what seemed an eternity. Out in the foyer we met up with others from my family that had followed instructions. I ended up talking to my aunt Jan while Eric talked to my older brother and Andrew's friend, Chris. After waiting for a second eternity I saw Charlotte's mom come out the doors with the bouquet. I walked over to my husband and put my hand on his back while I said we should go outside to be ready to take pictures. Then I looked up and saw that the man whose back I was caressing was not my husband, but my brother's friend. I don't think red adequately describes the color of my face.
Outside the temple it was windy and cold. It wasn't as windy as my wedding day (see slide show at right), but it was much colder.Pictures were taken through chattering teeth and skirts were tamed as much as possible. There weren't a lot of group shots before people were mercifully allowed to get into their warm cars. Once again, the mistake about my husband's identity was made, but at least this time it was the photographer who made the faux pas.
On the way off the temple grounds my mom gave me some quick instruction on what to do with the meat for the luncheon. We had planned on buying a wedding present for the happy couple, but that had to be put off. I didn't take any pictures at the luncheon, but we all had a great time eating, talking, eating, listening to cute stories, eating, watching the slide show, and eating. I cried more than I had planned, but less than I had feared. My husband and my not-husband were also both there and it irked me how careful I had to be that I only cuddled with the real husband. They thought it was hilarious. At the luncheon I also found out that both my aunt Elizabeth and my grandmother had been previously unaware that I'm pregnant. I thought my parents had told them weeks ago. Boy, am I in the dog house.
After the wedding we went home to take a much-needed nap. However, two boxes of Usborne books had arrived on my doorstep and I couldn't resist going through them. Once I did that I changed out of my clothes to take a nap. In a stroke of brilliance I decided to call and find out when we were wanted at the church for pictures before the reception. I had to leave a message on my dad's phone. I then laid down and the phone immediately rang. We were to be there at 5:30. I looked at my watch and saw that it said 5:30. Grumble.
I changed into my reception clothes and we went over to the church for pictures. The one thing Andrew had time to ask me before being dragged away was how Eric and I had made it through our own wedding day without dying of fatigue. We didn't have a luncheon and got married at 3 in the afternoon, that's how. When pictures started my husband was once again mistaken for someone else. This time a friend of the bride's father thought he was Andrew's brother. It happened again later that evening with someone else.
The remainder of the evening was spent sitting on my duff at one of the tables. I was sooo glad I didn't have to stand in that wretched line. Doing it once as the bride was quite enough. However, our table seemed to be the hot spot for guests, so I decided that was my contribution to the line. Usually those table have eight chairs around them. I think we were up to 12 or so at one point, along with other people standing around it. I've never felt so popular.
As a dutiful sister I stayed until the reception was over. At that point I pulled the pregnancy card and went home rather than help clean up. The fact that I was ready to die from tiredness salved my conscience. However, that didn't put a stop to the fun. At the close of the evening, when my parents finally had a chance to get off his feet and sit with us, some old lady came up to talk to us. I missed the first part of the conversation she had with my mom, but when she was done she came to talk to us. She smiled at us, congratulated us, and said, "It's been hard up to this point but it will be easier from now on." Then she gave me a hug, kissed me on the forehead, and thanked me for inviting her. I told her it was a pleasure to have her and we all waited until she was out of earshot before we started giggling. At least my bulging belly (which was the tip-off for another relative who didn't know I'm pregnant) was concealed under the table. That could have been awkward.
Congratulations, Andrew and Charlotte. We love you.