Snapshots: Halvorson wedding behind the scenes

This will be my last wedding related post for a while ( I promise). But I thought you might enjoy seeing a few more behind the scenes pictures collected from iphones (along with a few professional shots) that have come in from Matt and Stina’s wedding. If you haven’t read up on the wedding events then you may want to skim these posts: The RehearsalThe WeddingThe Reception,  before scrolling through these extra snapshots.

Here they are:

Getting ready:

1234706_10201327794948650_515763197_n1235499_10201327795948675_106592158_n

Post-picture lunch/brunch break with family and bridal party:

IMG_0976

My mom’s mother and my cousin Paige

IMG_0972IMG_0969IMG_0998

IMG_1320

My Dad’s Mom and the sixpence for Stina’s wedding shoe

Stina waiting for the guests to arrive watching them from the upstairs window and entertaining the flower girls:

IMG_0987IMG_0977

Prayer time for Stina with all the bridesmaids and female relatives:

1229918_10201327874190631_1413031825_nIMG_0996

Time to line up for the wedding:

1235159_10201327897471213_479157822_n1240599_10201327900151280_1084844507_nIMG_1312

582029_10201327889031002_567901490_n

1175380_10201327872150580_1765254409_n

The ceremony (and singing):

1234412_10201327916071678_1054517829_n

1236152_10201328310921549_2066677021_n

15388_709952055701494_1742908865_n

1238792_10201328372083078_1581983935_n

603095_10201328370283033_214307625_n

1239735_10201328341122304_476376991_n

The processional:

1234693_10201328396443687_140190015_n

1239508_10201328400083778_725658660_n

Matt’s best friend from high school and I

Celebrating after:

1240141_10201328402043827_1455508045_n

IMG_1313

IMG_1318

1209054_709955259034507_1730362984_n

My mom, my Aunt, and I

IMG_0990

Cousins iphone moment

1003059_709948039035229_1643024114_n

From left to right: my father (in law), my dad’s dad, and my hubby

1173601_709953685701331_2038451005_n

Matt and Stina snapshots:

1238040_10201328420724294_1529200513_n

Something borrowed-hairclip from me

1012027_10201328427804471_905954351_n

rainbow polka dot socks so my brother wouldn’t get cold feet

1231132_10201328428244482_9242993_n

Details from the reception:

1011633_10201328506566440_1186144360_n

at the trail mix bar

969514_10201328505326409_2134727269_n

family wedding photos

970766_10201328506646442_333775167_n

1231644_10201328505286408_79174392_n

mailbox to fill with advice and wedding cards

1044883_10201328504486388_1946288490_n

wall of pictures of Matt and Stina growing up

Let’s Dance!:

1174961_10201328527166955_2120816920_n1239612_10201328538007226_2121559545_n

1003076_10201328548607491_1914330830_n

Traditional Norwegian folk dancing

1233579_10201328541367310_926434626_n

1235892_10201328542527339_1800025407_n1185330_10201328540367285_58597396_n

Saying Goodbye!:

1003396_10201328562887848_1995965514_n1236998_10201328566847947_1901792172_n

1240433_10201328569568015_653480550_n

Thats all for now! Thanks for reading and sharing in this wonderful family event!!

The Reception

I ended my last post with looking back on my brother’s wedding ceremony a month ago (to get caught up see: The Wedding).  After the ceremony we left the Moseng house and headed to the Sons of Norway downtown Poulsbo. Luke and I carpooled with my in-laws and arrived quickly after most of the bridal party.

IMG_10041150337_709956662367700_1825452269_n

Everything looked wonderful just as we had set it up the night before (see The rehearsal). The head table was decorated with a full yellow table cloth  and crocheted runner. Mason jars lined the head the table prepped for placing the bridesmaid bouquets in. The table was set with an eclectic collection of tea cups and blue glass plates.

IMG_1003IMG_1006

Each yellow monogramed napkin was folded in it’s place. As we settled in I saw the MC/DJ was setting up by the favor table prepped with crates full of mini jars of spiced apple jam. People were beginning to fill into the guest tables and mingle looking at family pictures, signing the guest book, and writing adviced cards.

IMG_0958

Guests began to line up for coffee punch in glass cups, hot coffee, or tea.  Once drinks were served the line for the create-your-own snack at the trail mix bar grew quickly.

IMG_1323

When all the guests arrived, the wraps, sandwiches and fruit salad were laid out and once again a food line began to form. Once the bride and groom had arrived the fun began. Sparkling Cider was poured for all guests as Stina’s father, her sister, and my brother’s Best Man Andy gave toasts. Following Matt and Stina had their first dance then Stina danced with her father and last my brother danced with my mother.

IMG_1007IMG_1008

Then all married couples were asked on the dance floor. During a basic waltz the MC called out numbers if a couple had been married less than that number they were asked to leave the dance floor. Luke and I knew enjoyed our 45 second dance then twirled off when “one” was announced. The last remaining couple had been married more than 60 years and Stina gave them one of the bridal bouquets.

IMG_1012IMG_1010

After this the traditional folk dancing began. All the Moseng siblings and their now spouses danced together. Then the Moseng parents joined in another couples dance.  Last it was our turn.

Stina’s mother Lisa came to the mic to instruct us as all were welcomed on the dance floor to learn a few Norwegian folk dances. The first dance was basic, taught to the first graders but by the third or fourth dance the number of steps had increased dramatically. Although there were many mistakes and moments of confusion it was a great way to meet other wedding guests and share in the local and family culture. After trying to do a “Grand March” through the many people on the dance floor the folk dancing ended.

1185904_709960462367320_736444464_n1982_709960575700642_1821670321_n

Stina and Matt of course also did the bouquet and garter toss. This was my first wedding other than my own to not be in line for the bouquet. One of my cousins got the garter at my wedding and this time his older brother got Stina’s.

1175693_709959832367383_520136352_n

The plates were then cleared and Matt and Stina went to cut the traditional European wedding cake. White cake with raspberry and bavarian cream filling was served alongside refills of coffee and tea. The dance floor was opened once again to classic slow dancing and swing music.

1184750_709957325700967_1693317431_nIMG_1021

Slowly the non-relative members of the bridal disappeared to decorate the couple’s car. As dancing continued Stina and Matt talked with friends and family guests. Those who traveled from Oregon began to leave having a long day and a car ride to get home.  My family wandered out to the terrace overlooking the waterfront on this beautiful sunny Washington day as Stina and Matt got ready to leave.

IMG_1325

We all gathered outside in the parking lot prepped with bubbles to shower the newlyweds as they left for their honeymoon. When Matt and Stina arrived at his CRV we all pitched in to clear the windshield of Oreos, the sun visors from rice or glitter, the inside of the car from balloons filled with glitter (among many other things). Every window was covered with writing and of course there was a string of cans tied to the back bumper. After a little frustration trying to clean off the car they were off to catch a ferry ride to their hotel for the night.

1151011_709960889033944_1218691750_n

Luke and I had a red eye flight to catch that evening back to New York so we took some time to say goodbye and thank you to the bridal party, Stina’s family, and then our own. We headed back to the hotel with Luke’s parents, changed and packed for the airport. Then we left for Seattle for one last night in Washington (see Little Norway and the Emerald City ).

IMG_1322IMG_1310

August 3rd was a beautiful day and it was such a wonderful wedding. Every detail was noticed and appreciated. It takes a lot of work to pull all the the pieces together but with everyone working together the day went pretty smoothly. I was so glad Luke and I could be there to celebrate in such an important day in my brother’s life.

No ring bearer? No problem!

About a year ago when Luke and I considered who to be in our wedding we ran into a problem. The only little boys we knew who were old enough to be ring bearers lived out of state or would not be able to come to the wedding. We didn’t want to put pressure on our out-of-state friends and family who had little boys, some of whom already had wedding responsibilities. So to make planning less complicated, we decided to forgo the idea of a ring bearer at all!

Instead we chose Makayla , a close friend of the family, to be our flower girl and bear both job titles and responsibilities.

Mikayla Easter 2011

Makayla Easter 2011

Makayla is the most intelligent, mature, and fun girl I’ve ever been around. Back in California, the two of us had girl nights watching disney movies, making cupcakes or pizza, and talking all evening.

IMG_1814IMG_1822

When I asked Makayla to be my flower girl  it seemed the adults were more excited then her about the idea, but she said yes. So we took her to a store that specialized in formal children’s wear. You could tell she was beginning to warm up to the idea of being a flower girl when she started putting on pretty dresses. Finally Makayla tried on a dress that she didn’t want to change out of.  She obviously felt like a very important princess in it. With no hesitation we bought her the dress knowing she was now ready and comfortable with being the flower-girl.

IMG_9783

coloring at my bridal shower

The day of my wedding Makayla patiently sat as her mom did intricate braiding of her hair. I was close by also having my hair done.

IMG_0187IMG_0196

When wedding time came, Makayla took on her role like a pro. Dropping flowers from her basket, she went down the aisle with a smile. But her job as a ring bearer meant  she also carried in her basket a wooden box my dad made with our wedding rings in it.

IMG_1138IMG_1130

At the end of the aisle she carefully handed the wood box to the best man and walked over to sit with her parents. It all worked out perfectly.

IMG_2280

So Thank You Makayla for being an amazing flower girl and being a big part of our special wedding day!!

Who to choose for your bridal party?

The people in your bridal party are there to support you, help you prepare for and celebrate in your marriage. Too often though bridal parties cause conflict, drama, and stress for the engaged couple. It all comes down to who you choose to be in your bridal party. (And when I say bridal party I am speaking bridesmaids and groomsmen!)

IMG_2152

Here are 3 things you should know:

1a Know your expectations

Planning a wedding puts the bridal party and the future bride/ groom under a lot of pressure. Before choosing your bridal party, consider who is up for the challenge. Only you know what responsibilities and expectations you hope to delegate to your party. Ask yourself:

Do I want them to help with the invitations? Dress shopping? Registry?

What type of “day of” events do I hope they will take care of?

Do I want them to help organize my schedule?

I would suggest not having more than a few (1/2 ) bridesmaids/groomsmen that live far away. This is especially true for bridesmaids. You need some people  less than 4/6 hours away to help plan a bridal shower and be available to meet with you face-to-face.

My in-state support team : first cousin and college roommate

My in-state support team : first cousin and maid of honor my college roommate

Still do not dismiss your out-of-staters. Know when they can come into town for the wedding and let them help the week-of. Delegate things to them you know they can do long distance or that you won’t need until the week-of. They want to help even if they are not close.

Luke and his best-man who lives in Luke's home state of OR

Luke and his best-man who lives in Luke’s home state of OR

My matron-of-honor who lives in the state of  WA where I went to college

My matron-of-honor who lives in the state of WA

1b Know your values

I have heard several couples less than five years into their marriage share they are no longer in contact with their bridal party. If you are a young couple, you have a lot of change down the road: moves, careers, children, all of this can cause separation from those you are close to when you get married.

So think about:

– In 10 years will I still be in contact with my wedding party? Will that matter to me?

-Is it important that my future kids know who they are/or that they are involved in their lives?

-Why do I want them standing next to me at the wedding and in my family pictures?

It may be old fashion, but I see the bridal party as literally standing with you in agreement of your marriage. They are the people who I can go to or them to me as accountability to the promise I made on my wedding day. I want my future children to either know who they are or I will be able to quickly tell them their importance in my life.

My younger Engaged! brother and my first  cousin

My younger Engaged! brother and my first cousin

I would encourage you to include family in your bridal party. Even if you move far away, they will be around for holidays. There is a guarantee you children will know their aunts, uncles, your cousins etc. Also, if they grew up with you, they know your values, and expectations pretty well.

2. Know their personalities and character

A lot of problems and drama occur because the bride or groom do not want to hurt someone’s feelings by not choosing them to be in the wedding.  But often friendships end after a wedding because of  bridesmaid/groomsmen conflicts. You want people who are truly responsible and capable of being there for you in this important and stressful time.

IMG_2316

So mull over this:

-Are they encouragers/can they tell when I need help or a break?

-Are they trustworthy/reliable/dependable/on time?

-Will they be respectful of my family and work well with the other bridal party members? (AKA Would grandma like them?)

-Are they apt to push their wants on my wedding? Or be impolite in expressing their dislike for my plans?

IMG_0581

It is a privilege to be asked to participate in planning and/or being in someone’s wedding. The person has probably earned a special place in your life, gained your trust and respect. If you choose someone who is unreliable, disrespectful, or inappropriate then you will find yourself with unnecessary drama instead of encouraging help.

3.Know their experience and talents

Even if the people you are considering for your bridal party understand your expectations, are mature, and willing to help they may not know what to do. Once again, if you are a young couple then it is likely that your peers are not married, have not been in a lot of weddings, and very possibly have not been to many weddings. You may be surprised how many people don’t know what is included in wedding planning, or typical groomsmen/bridesmaid responsibilities.

IMG_2280

Consider this:

-Have they ever been in a wedding before? Have they been to a wedding before?

(If no then ask: are they quick learners?)

-Are they creative and independent?

-Are they flexible and organized?

I would highly suggest choosing at least one married matron of honor/bridesmaid. Having one or two people in your wedding party who have “been there done that” is helpful. They have perspective, experience, and can help you prioritize. They will know what you are going through and are less apt to project their thoughts on your wedding.

The best man is married and my brother and the other groomsmen are both engaged

The best man is married and my brother and the other groomsmen are both engaged

Answer these questions honestly. Evaluate your strengths and weaknesses in planning for the wedding and choose people who are strong in your areas of weakness. But be realistic, no one is perfect.  Consider these questions and suggestions and you will be on your way to building a strong support team!

IMG_2204

Wedding Season has Begun!

I choice to take a mini-spring-break from blogging because I haven’t felt much like writing about our real-life stuff right now. Were are in the middle of some car drama and I’m in the up’s and downs of job searching. (And yes I’ll share that all with you . . . eventually).

But let’s change topics shall we?

A week ago when I was in the middle of a hectic run-around I received a very anticipated phone call. So I pulled my Walmart grocery cart to a traffic free zone and answering my phone. It was my brother  sharing the good news that he and his girlfriend had just gotten engaged!  Everyone knew it would happen very soon and we are all thrilled.

166758_10151598889054744_1148091877_n

Pacific City OR

532960_10151598889209744_17487787_n

Thinking about their wedding plans I began to look back on some of the details of my own wedding almost 6 months ago. I didn’t pintrest my way through my engagement or blog it out. But knowing at least 8 (probably closer to 10) couples who got engaged so far this year I thought: maybe I should take sometime to share advice and details from my wedding? Maybe it will spark some creativity for those planning their weddings?

As we head into this wedding season I’ll be dispersing some details and advice blogs from a bride who has been there done that. (I think 6 months is long enough to reflect back but not so long ago that I’ve forgotten the little things.)

So for all of my engaged couples-enjoy! And for my single friends these blogs may be good to ear-mark for that future special day down the road. Or if you are not one of those single “one day, day-dreamer” types remember you’ll probably be involved in a friend or family member’s wedding in the next 5 years. Even if you were at my wedding you may be surprised by some of the sentimental small details you probably didn’t know about.

Here are some topics to look forward to:

Who to choose for the bridal party?

Special Guests: how to care for kids, grandparents, and those with allergies

4 month engagement- a timeline and some big helps

Favors from friends :a great way to $ave

The Sentimental Personal details

No ring bearer? No problem

Things to double check with DJ/MC/Video/photographer

Advice for the Bride on her big day

Tips for Bridal Party including: when planning a bridal shower/ Bachelor(ette) party

Invitations, Thank you cards, and Gratuity

And that is not all! (Yes I went on a brainstorming craze). What do you think? And don’t worry tons of pics from my wedding and updates on the bro’s wedding plans will be shared along the way!

Wedding Season had Begun!