The Wickenburg Country Club with the tables set up for Claire and Miguel's wedding reception.
My jobs for the day of the wedding were:
1. Make the 6 boutonieres for the groom and his men
2. Make two more bouquets, one for the flower girls (my three-year-old granddaughter Makayla) and one for the junior bridesmaid (Miguel's' nine-year-old niece Brisa)
3. Go to the Wickenburg Country club and set up the centerpieces on the tables
4. Add extra flowers to each of the 54 centerpieces
5. Set up the table numbers
6. Make sure the center pieces for the 12 patio tables - mason jars full of green aqua beads lit up by little submersible LED lights stuck inside the beads - were ready to be set up.
7. Make sure everything that needed to be at the country club for the reception was there.
8. Get the flowers and boutonnieres over to the church.
9. Have a lunch for the bridal party and a few others (about 20 people) set up in the lobby of the hotel by 11:30
10. Take down the lunch and clean up the lobby area by 1:00.
11. Take the left-overs from lunch to Miguel's mom's house for later consumption.
13. Walk Claire down the aisle with Tom
14. "Lasso" Claire and Miguel together with a long crystal rosary during the wedding ceremony, a Mexican tradition.
15. Take as many pictures as possible
But, as always, I got by with a little help from my friends and, of course, family.
A couple of the country club staffers artfully folding the napkin. My sister-in-law, Louise, running around behind the table. Lolita, Dulce and Miguel's brother Victor standing in the background working on the wedding cake.
While I made the boutonnieres my sister Romaine made the two bouquets and Louise , my mom and Romaine (after she finished the bouquets) touched up the centerpieces. Dulce set up the table numbers and set up the seating charts and the table numbers.
The seating charts were in the frames. Dulce's idea, very cute.
My mom, at 93 years old still always ready to jump in and do whatever needs to be done
Miguel's mom, Lolita, made the wedding cake. Here she's putting it together with help from Miguel's brother Victor.
Miguel checking to make sure it's centered.
The aqua-bead centerpieces on the patio
I want to stop here and give shout-out to Miquel's sister-in-law, Dulce, wife of his brother Carlos, who is the head cook, event planner, and general doer of just about everything at the Wickenburg Country Club. It was she who organized the reception and put together the menu, then oversaw the food preparation the day of the wedding - in fact, over saw the preparation of everything the day of the wedding! Dulce is one capable amazing young lady! Wish I'd thought to run after her while she was running around and gotten her photo! But of course, her hand was in everything you see in all the photos.
After we finished at the country club my brother Mike with his wife Louise, my sister Romaine and my mother (also Romaine!) took all the bouquets and boutonnieres over to the church while I drove back to the hotel to meet Tom and set up the pre-wedding lunch for the bridal party and some friends and family.
Lunch in the hotel lobby. I ordered a meat and cheese tray, vegetable tray, potato salad, rolls and cookies from the local Safeway. Pretty standard-sounding stuff, but I swear, these were the most beautifully prepared trays I've ever seen, with attractive little garnishes like olives and peppers placed around the trays. The rolls were soft and fresh and, in truth, theirs was the only good store-made potato salad I've ever had! Of course, on the other hand I do wonder if everything looked and tasted so good because I was so happy.
After lunch it was time to get ready for the wedding. The plan was that Claire and her bridal party would walk the short block from the hotel to the church.
Just chillin' in the hotel lobby a few minutes before the walk to the church
Groomsman Tommy, bridesmaid Theresa in the background
Junior bridesmaid, Miguel's niece Brisa
Then finally after all the racing around we were there in the church for one final quiet moment...
Then the big moment.
It was a wonderful, beautiful wedding, part in English, part in Spanish. Except for the organ entrance and exit music ("Here Comes The Bride" & the exit music that goes with "Here Comes The Bride". Nobody uses those old traditional songs anymore - it's all "Pachelbel Canon" these days, but you forget how pretty "Here Comes The Bride" acually is), the music was provided by a guitarist and his daughter who sang and played the cello. They played mostly tradtional Spanish songs but also, per Claire's request, did Leonard Cohen's "Hallelujah".
A couple of Mexican traditions were incorporated into the wedding Mass.
Romaine brought up the arras, or gold coins, in a small box. Miguel and Claire took the coins from the box and shared them with each other, symbolizing that from now on they will share with each other everything they acquire in life.
Lolita and I then "lassoed" Claire and Miguel together with a rosary lasso.
While the guitar-cello duo played and sang "Hallelujah" Claire offered a bouquet to the statue of Mary and Miguel offered a bouquet in honor of his dead father. There was hardly a dry eye in the church at that moment.
Claire, Miguel, the witnesses and the priest also signed all the marriage documents at the altar during the ceremony.
Maria, Claire, Tommy, Theresa
After the wedding there was a shuttle waiting at the hotel to begin bringing guests back and forth to the country club for the reception
Our greeter/"bouncer" at the country club. No joke! In a small community like Wickenburg everyone knows when there's a wedding and wedding crashers are not unheard of!
The beautiful wedding cake and cupcakes made by Lolita
There was a display of photos of Miguel's parents and Tom and me on our wedding days,
...and a fantastic mariachi band that played before and during dinner.
Before dinner there were hors d'oeuvres served on the patio. Besides the salsa and chips shown here there were seafood-stuffed mushrooms, veggies and dip and chicken pieces.
Views from the patio
Part of the Panera Posse
The dinner made by Dulce was a buffet, beautifully presented and delicious. This is Tom's plate. He went with the chicken and mushrooms. There was also pork seasoned with Rosemary and sage which I had, along with the chicken -both were wonderful!
After dinner the dancing started out on the patio. Miguel's brother Carlos was the DJ, though from time to time his other brothers, Victor and Luis, stepped in to take over. The music was a variety of Latino styles, raggaeton, which sounds kind of like hip-hop; salsa; zapeeteado (guys stompin, girls swirling skirts); and cumbia (chucka-chucka rythmn). Thanks to Miguel for explaining the different styles to me. It was all fun, wonderful music and great to dance to.
For their first dance, though, Claire and Miguel chose a beautiful song called "These Arms of Mine" by Otis Redding
One more shout-out to Dulce: After working on the wedding since 7:00 am that morning, cooking the food and then serving the food at the reception, around 9:00 in the evening Dulce reappeared all dressed up and beautiful and ready to party the rest of the night away - before supervising the cleaning up after the reception was over!
It was a beautiful day and a beautiful night.
by Patti Liszkay
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by Patti Liszkay
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"Equal And Opposite Reactions"
by Patti Liszkay
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I am a traveler just visiting this planet and reporting various and sundry observations,
hopefully of interest to my fellow travelers.