Nick and I are both so fortunate to come from loving and supportive families. Our parents raised us to be kind, faithful, and respectful individuals. They have provided us with a solid foundation and have nurtured our independence. They are our role models and have set wonderful examples for us to follow â€“ in life, love, and marriage.
With the exception of spending a college semester abroad, I have always lived within two hours of the house where I grew up. It will always be home to me, and I love returning for backyard BBQs and golf matches and, lately, wedding planning. And Nick has told me on numerous occasions that he likes going home (yes, he calls it home, too) for all of the same reasons.
Nickâ€™s parents, on the other hand, live on the opposite side of the country. When we first started dating, I was skeptical how a family with so much distance between them could be so close. (Theyâ€™re in California, Virginia, Michigan, and even Germany — lots of great travel destinations, I must say!) But they are. And they warmly welcomed me into their family just a few months into our relationship.
Now, I donâ€™t need to tell any of you that planning a wedding is hard work. But both of our families have offered help and advice and have encouraged us to make decisions that are right for us.
My parents have generously contributed to our wedding fund. They also paid for my attire â€“ from my gown to my veil to my shoes to my jewelry â€“ and special treats like a hanger to drape my dress on and our cake serving set. And they have spent hours upon hours helping us to assemble our invitations and our centerpieces and every other time-intensive idea we come up with.
Although Nickâ€™s parents live on the west coast, theyâ€™ve been incredibly helpful, as well. Theyâ€™re taking care of the Out of Town bags, the transportation to and from the hotel, and the rehearsal dinner. Theyâ€™re also contributing to our ceremony.
So how do we acknowledge the most influential people in our lives on the most important day of our lives? Well, weâ€™re incorporating a few words into the ceremony to let our parents know how much we appreciate our upbringings, and weâ€™re also planning a tribute to them during the reception. (By the way, my parents are celebrating their 30th anniversary just three days before our wedding, and Nickâ€™s parents celebrated 36 years just a few months ago!)
Of course, we also have a few additional gifts to give to them the night before and the morning of. I donâ€™t want to spoil any surprises, though, so let me turn it over to you.
How are you paying tribute to your parents on your wedding day?