28 June 2008


We took the whole family (minus Anna who had a pre-marital appointment with Drew the Lesser) to see Wall-e this morning. (To those of you who are gasping at the enormity of the economic stimulus this must have caused, swallow your gasps. Tickets for morning shows only cost $5 each.)

Pixar has done it again. Wall-e was breathtaking and wonderful. According to an interview with Mike Stanton, the director, it wasn't an environmental diatribe (although some narrow-minded and near-sighted people have claimed it is). It is a precious love story. It also aims a few light-hearted barbs at modern culture, which hit the bullseye as far as I'm concerned. Maybe we'll laugh at ourselves and stop taking ourselves so seriously.

I don't want to say too much - no spoilers - but go see this if you have the chance. I don't often see films in the theater more than once, but I'd like to see this again. Oh, and we'll definitely be purchasing the DVD when it's available.


Morning Time

I'm working on a time based on Cindy at Dominion Family's 'Morning Time' (see the ClassEd blogs list in the sidebar). I don't know that mine will look just like hers or what I'll end up calling it (although I have some ideas, which I'll discuss in a separate post), or what it'll look like long-term, but I have a plan for this coming week. Each day we'll

*read the day's Bible reading assignment from our senior pastor's blog
*read a short section from The Gospel Primer for Christians
*sing 'O Wondrous Love' to work toward memorizing it
*recite the books of the Old Testament (also working toward memorizing them - my older kids know this, but the youngers have slipped through the cracks)
*read 'Casey at the Bat', also working toward a comfortable familiarity through repetition, if not memorization
*read at least a chapter of Northanger Abbey (we finished Alice this week)


To Plan or Not to Plan

…that is the question.

The last few years, I've spent most of my summer heavy in planning mode. I set up spreadsheets. I plan out each week of school. I plan out each day of each week. In every subject and discipline. For each child. I create worksheets for reading assignments and copywork and grammar.

Then school starts, and the whole thing goes down the drain within the first couple of weeks. Eventually, I'm so discouraged at my perceived lack of progress that I don't even bother to open the spreadsheet. It sits forlorn and lonely on my dock, guiltily ignored. Then we get to the end of the school year and I feel like we've gotten very little done. (Then, once I get over the homeschooling-mom-end-of-year doldrums, I realize we haven't done that badly.)

This year, because of a discussion on ClassEd and a phone chat with Michele, one of the ClassEd moms, I'm letting go of the planning. I'm still setting out rough guidelines and basic goals, but I'm not going to try to plan our year in such great detail.

With this decision, summer has taken on a different hue. Instead of the olive green of drudgery, it's the bright and shimmery pink of promise (I don't know if drudgery is olive green or promise is pink, but I don't like the former and love the latter, so it works for me ;-D). My prep work this summer will entail reading the books the kids will be reading, listening to and taking notes on the Gileskirk lectures, and laying out general goals and guidelines, immersing myself in the material instead of in the plan. Oh, frabjous joy! Calloo, callay!!!


26 June 2008


We have a date, a time, and a place!!! September 13, at 9:30 a.m., at a local multi-purpose room that fits about 400. {whew!} Anna and I will go down this afternoon (once she's finished at the dentist) and put the deposit down to hold the room.

We're also narrowing down dress fabrics. On the Sense and Sensibility forum, someone mentioned the Silk Baron. I'm so impressed with their selection, their prices, and how friendly they are! I've already had to call them about changing my swatch order and the man I spoke with couldn't have been nicer!

Their dupionis are beautiful, and they have an impressive selection of colors. Their other offerings aren't as substantial, but they have some very nice georgettes, chiffons, and just the right taffeta for Eliza's flower girl dress.

I'm now working to set up a meeting with two of the attendants so Jona and I can take measurements and begin working with the patterns. As soon as the fabric is decided upon, we'll order that and get going. Then, we'll work with two attendants at a time as each dress will be a bit different.


20 June 2008


To continue my last post...

Given Cindy's comment (her concern isn't a possibility at our church as there are well over 500 members), I've been thinking about the balance between community and cleaving.

For a single person who has been rightly encouraged to be involved in the lives of others, investing in them and letting them invest in him in return, there's a huge transition in getting married.

Instead of thinking of the feelings of lots of others, one's new spouse becomes pre-eminent and that one person must be considered above and possibly against all others (after the Lord, I'm talkin' horizontal relationships in this post).

That doesn't mean that the new couple doesn't continue to invest in the lives of others, but it does change the nature of that investment and those other relationships.


18 June 2008

Theology of Wedding Planning

Anna mentioned something to me in an email today. She's been contemplating a 'theology of wedding planning'. This is a great thing to think about and I'm going to join her in musing about it.

First of all: (to quote CJ Mahaney) the main thing is to keep the main thing the main thing. 'What is the main thing?' you ask. As always, for those of us who have been regenerated by the power of Christ through the gospel - the glory of Christ and a focus on that saving gospel is the main thing.

Secondly: it's important to remember the purpose of a wedding - that two people end up married at the end of the day.

Community is also an important factor. Marriages don't take place in a vacuum. Even though it's a limited relationship between one man and one woman, what that one man and that one woman do in the privacy of their home has repercussions throughout the community. It works the other way, too. The community influences and underpins the marriage relationship. When two sinners say 'I do', they will need the help and support of that community to glorify the Lord in their marriage (back to the main thing). Sin always rears its ugly head and when it does, those not so emotionally involved, yet who love the couple, need to come alongside and help (help each party see his or her own sin, repent, and then to forgive the sin of the other as well as to provide accountability). Biblical marriages happen in the context of community.

How does that work out practically in the arena of wedding planning? Ah, that's the question! I'll continue this train of thought as I talk with Anna about it.


Finding a Gown

Now that we have Anna's gown, it's time for me to start thinking about mine and Eliza's, as well as dresses for Judith, Rebekah, and Melody, who aren't in the wedding party.

As I mentioned before, Anna has chosen colors and is allowing each attendant to choose her own style of gown, with certain parameters.

Research: I've been spending lots of time looking at gown pictures online. Anna knew what silhouette she was looking for, which helped us narrow our search. She also had an idea of how embellished she wanted her gown to be and that also helped us narrow things down.

So, I think I'm looking for something with an empire waist (but the skirt below the waist doesn't need to be very full - it can be more of an A-line). I'm avoiding halters (not good with my linebacker shoulders). I have permission to have a bit more beading and embroidery on my dress as I'm filling two rôles, but I'm not going to go nuts. I don't want to look matronly, but don't want to look as if I still think I'm 20!

Eliza's dress won't be too difficult. Flower girl dresses are so fun to make.

I have to continue to think about the other girls, though. Again, it all depends on the time of day.

Speaking of the time of day (which is dependent upon venue), the church is leaning toward 'no'. So, I'll start calling places today. I'd like to offer the kids some interesting and unusual alternatives, so if you have any ideas for where I can look, I'd appreciate it! There's a local olive mill that looks beautiful, but I don't know if they host events; I've also found a couple of wineries, but they may be too far away; one winery is closer, but probably not big enough. September will still be too hot for an outdoor wedding (although monsoons will have ended by then), so I need someplace indoors (or farther north with a higher elevation). So, I'll be making phone calls today!


16 June 2008

Houston, We Have...

...a gown!

Anna and I went tonight to browse at a discount wedding warehouse. The fourth gown she tried on was the one. It's exquisite and just perfect for her. And it's on clearance, so the price was right. It actually costs the same amount we paid for mine, 23 years ago.

We're continuing to discuss the attendants' dresses (or gowns). Anna and Drew have chosen colors for the gowns (although, other than the flower girl, we're not sure who will wear which color), but want to allow each attendant to choose a style according to her individual figure. There will be certain elements that will be the same for all the gowns - Anna wants no strapless gowns, and they'll either all be tea-length or floor-length, but not a combination. We're also thinking about embroidery or beadwork or both that will be the same or similar for all the dresses as another element to pull them altogether.

However, we can't really make any decisions until we have a place, which will give us a time of day and thus help us know how formal the attendants' gowns will be. We haven't heard back from our church yet, but I'm going to begin making some information-gathering calls tomorrow to scope out alternatives. I did some preliminary looking online this afternoon.

I've also been doing a bit of research about the duties of the mother of the bride and the duties of the matron of honor. I'm so thankful and relieved Andrea will be coordinating. I think I'd already be feeling overwhelmed without her.

I've been researching weddings on a budget and think I've found a good resource. It's in the other computer, so I'll post more details later on.



We went to a local bridal gown store on Saturday. We got there only a couple minutes before they closed (the flat tire took a goodish bit of time), but they let us in and let Anna try on a gown.

It was beautiful! It was the right shape for her figure. It was the right size. The color looked wonderful with her complexion. The embroidery was gorgeous. The price wasn't.

I found a bridal warehouse here in town and we're going tonight to browse.

I'm still not sure what color I'm wearing and without knowing the time of day, I can't start designing yet, but I've been browsing gown websites for ideas (something not-too-matronly, but still pretty and feminine and that won't clash with the other attendants - Anna has decided the colors, but each attendant will choose her own style of gown). I can't begin to think about dresses for the three middle girls yet either, but am planning on making them pretties to wear, too.


13 June 2008

Wedding Progress

I can't reveal details (they're not mine to reveal), but I can post progress.

Colors have been chosen, as have attendants.

Anna and Drew are still working on a venue and a date. Our church is very busy in September and we're still not sure if they can shoehorn in another wedding. Anna's birthday is in October and she doesn't want her birthday and her anniversary to be that close together. They both think that November is too long to wait.

Anna's friend is going to coordinate the wedding.

Another friend has a business designing invitations, and a friend of Drew's mom is going to print the invitations, the wedding programs, and provide reception favors.

They're setting up an informational website that will also act as their clearing house for R.S.V.P.'s.

We've begun looking at wedding gowns online, just to get ideas.
I was in Barnes and Noble the other night and, on a lark, stopped to look at the wedding planners. Oh, my. The things that our culture thinks are necessary for a wedding are mind-blowing. The lists I looked at included, among other things and with no indication that they might be optional, a professional make-up artist, a professional hair stylist, manicures and pedicures for the entire bridal party, and a professional calligrapher to address the invitations.

However, in the books I browsed through, there was no mention of pre-marital counselling. We as a culture seem to put too much emphasis on making the wedding a big deal, and not nearly enough on making the marriage a big deal. I'm thankful the kids aren't just thinking of the big day, but beyond.