Well I can now count on my two hands the number of days until Jane and I walk down the aisle! I cannot believe that after 33 years of life and 15 years of seriously looking to find my vocation, I am about to embrace that vocation in Jane. If I sit and think about it I am probably still not completely sure that it is all real. To desire and pray for so long to meet someone and then for that to actually happen is an awesome reality. I think back to all the conversations I had with people about wanting to get married and now I am on the threshold of that reality…praise God!
A few people have asked if I have cold feet and I think my feet are just fine. If I had any worries those were all at the start of being engaged and getting used to that. I am looking forward to everything, although knowing that I am not a huge fan of change there will no doubt be some adjusting to married life in the beginning. At this stage it is the excitement of the reality of being married that is present.
But before getting to marriage, the wedding day is the imminent reality. While of course all those big items are now done there seems to be more and more small and time consuming tasks that must be completed.
Although I was hopeful to have the wedding booklet printed some weeks ago, that was perhaps too hopeful. The document is 99% completed but it is the final 1% that is taking time, but that will be wrapped up in the coming days before being printed and then I don’t think I will want to look at it again lest I spot any errors. The booklet contains all the prayers and parts of the liturgy and probably shows my innate desire to use every moment in life as an opportunity for education and evangelisation.
Apart from the booklet we were keen to have a prayer card designed that could be distributed to all present at the end of the Mass. We found some prayers for marriage and meshed those together with our own words to create what I think is a very touching prayer. On the front is the image of an icon of the Holy Family which Jane and I have sort of taken as our own, especially as we will be marrying on the vigil of the feast of the Holy Family. My hope is that those who receive the card will see it as more than a souvenir of the day and pray the prayer from time to time for us, and indeed for all married couples, that they become more faithful icons to the world of the gift of marriage and family life.
Jane has been working very hard in the last few days putting together bonbonnieres which have turned out really well. And of course this has involved much work with colours and papers and wording. She had all her sisters working in an assembly line this week to get the job done. The actual bonbonniere is a small gift but let me just say it has the potential to be rather large!
Also on the to-do list is seating arrangements which I am told can be a messy operation. There are so many different ways to work it out. We are deciding if we completely mix it up and arrange seats so our guests can meet new people or go with the safer option of placing family and friends next to those they know really well.
Then of course there is music for the reception. Thankfully I am marrying someone who has some idea about various songs that would work for dinner and dancing, although we still need to finalise what we would like we would like to accompany us as we enter the reception venue, cut the cake and say our goodbyes at the end of the night.
And with just these few days left, both Jane and I am trying to keep some focus on the fact that Christmas is upon us so that we are able to give it the full weight it needs as a time to drawer closer to Christ and to family. Of course next Christmas Jane and I will be starting our own little family traditions as well so that will be something else to look forward to!