Post # 1
My husband and I got married at the courthouse with no family or friends there in January of 2008. Now that we have money and can actually afford to have a wedding and reception, we’re ready to have the big ceremony that we’ve always wanted. I was wondering if there’s anyone who has been in a similar situation? I don’t know if we should carry it out like a regular wedding with exchanging of rings, my dad walking me down the aisle, bridesmaids/groomsemen, etc.? When we got married at the courthouse, we didn’t exchange rings. At the time we didn’t have extra money for wedding bangs, so we didn’t buy any. So we’d like to exchange rings at the ceremony. And since we don’t need anyone licensed in marriage to marry us, who can we get to carry out our ceremony? We are planning to have our ceremony on March 25, 2011 – which will be the anniversary of the day we started dating. Just if anyone can give advice and suggestions, I would greatly appreciate it. Thanks a bunch in advance!
Post # 3
does anyone know you are married? we didn’t become “legal” at the courthouse – we actually had one of our ministers do the ceremony (on our deck at our house) – but we became legal on april 13 of last year – however we still planned on having our big wedding this june.
now we, though, haven’t told anyone except a handful (my parents, his mom, my MOH/her husband who were our witnesses, and the two ministers – the one who did the ceremony and one who’ll do the wedding in june…)
we didn’t exchange rings originally – and since no one really KNOWS we are married, everything will go off like a “regular” wedding – sand ceremony, vows, my dad walking me down the aisle/giving me a way, rings, etc…
we’ve also decided to always celebrate our anniversary on June 26 as well.
it’s really up to you! there’s absolutely NOTHING wrong with having your big wedding – and maybe carry it out more like you’re just re-newing your vows?
Post # 4
I’m doing a civil ceremony in a few weeks and a church wedding later. FI and I are Catholic, so the service we will have is called a convalidation. Because our church does not recognize us as sacramentally married, only as legally married, we will be having exactly the same service as a regular wedding. We will have the vows, the exchanging of rings, a full mass, etc.
As for an officiant (assuming you are not Catholic), you can probably find a minister who will do a renewal of vows. There are also lots of licensed wedding officiants who might just do a normal wedding ceremony without signing the marriage license.
Does anyone know you are married? We are letting our families know but keeping it pretty quiet. I will continue to use my maiden name until the ceremony and will use my maiden name on the invitations.
Post # 5
Congratulation on being on your way to have your dream wedding.
We got married last August and because of financial and other issues (traveling families and school) we are having our reception this August. We exchanged rings at the city halls with 3 of his closest friends. My family does not live here so nobody on my side was present. My family and friends are flying to Canada from USA to attend our reception. We were thinking of doing some kind of vow exchange but instead we are planning on giving speeches…both to each other and thanking our loved ones.
I am planning on talking about how wonderful it has been to be married to him..etc.
we will have a traditional table set (we are persian) that my mom is taking care of. normally we will be sitting in front of it while getting married but it will serve more of a decor at our reception. we will have the first dance together. then move on to speeches then dinner. We do not believe in religious ceremonies so there will be none of that which i am glad because if there was the wedding then the reception on the same day there may have been some issues with that 🙂
Remember aside from few things there is no RULES to follow you can have as JuneBride suggested a vow re-newel…
I will be wearing a wedding gown and it will be a semi formal event wit ha relax fun atmosphere 🙂
Post # 6
We got married almost a year ago (Sunday!) but no one knows except my MOHs. We have our big wedding on 5/23. Since no one knows we are already legally hitched we are doing everything a standard wedding would entail. We’re even signing a marriage license and just not sending it back to be processed. My best friend’s father is officiating for us, but in Colorado a couple can legally marry themselves off, so we wouldn’t need a “real” officiant anyway. Since you’re already legally wed you can have whoever you want conduct your ceremony.
If people know you are married I guess it’s more of a vow renewal, but I think that’s just as important and significant as your first ceremony, so you should have all the bells and whistles that you want! Exchange rings! Wear a dress! Dance the night away!
Have fun and congrats!
Post # 7
Thanks for your replies. Yes, everyone knows that we are married and everyone now knows that we’re planning our big wedding so they can attend. Everyone that we know and have told are so happy for us. I did have one lady who I do not know personally tell me that I’m being a gift grabber for having as she calls it a “do over” wedding. But thankfully I have not encountered anyone else who feels that way about it. I think we’re just going to carry it out like a normal wedding, but without the bridesmaids/groomsmen. We will be getting married in my hometown, which is a different state from where we currently live. I will be wearing a white gown, nothing fancy though. Just something simple. I think we’ll probably just repeat our vows. We aren’t religious, so we don’t want to have a church wedding. But will probably ask a preacher or whatever to read our vows because even though we don’t follow a religion, we both still grew up in Christian homes and believe some of the same things.
But a lot of people have mentioned the “sand ceremony” to me. What exactly is that?
Post # 8
We were married October 2, 2008. We actually rushed so that he could join the military and I and our son would have whatever dependant stuff we could immediately. Well turned out he had too many dependants since they would have to count my children from a previous marraige despite the fact that we didn’t need any extra help and he already had 2. It wasn’t a huge deal. We wanted all of his family there, I’ve had the big wedding this was his idea actually We were married on a Thursday so that we could have our wedding on our 2 year anniversary. Everyone knows we’re married. They all knew the situation when it went down and they’re all super supportive and are excited for it too. It probably helps that he is the only child of 3 that are married, and he is the baby. He’s also the only grandchild on both sides to be married. Lastly on his dad’s side he is the only one other than his grandparents that are married. I’m a rare one and only 1 of 2 Mrs. L’s in the family since everyone else is just living together. Weddings appear to be a rarity in this family.
Wow that was a novel. We will not be exchanging rings since we did at the courthouse. I will either have my stepdad or my older son walk me down the aisle. I haven’t decided yet. It may be both. We’re also having our marraige blessed at the same time since we were married in a courthouse by a judge.
Wow that was a novel. No you’re not alone. If you have any questions or anything you can pm me
Post # 9
I decided to do the “sand ceremony” because we decided NOT to do the lighting of the candle (joining of the familes…) – normally, the candle ceremony involves both sets of parents “joining of the families”…well he doesn’t really want his parents involved – mainly because his mom (his step mom, but still calls him his “mom”…his real mom died when he was 13) – anyways – his mom will be in a wheelchair at our wedding and she HATES having any attention on her.
SO – I have worked with my minister and came up with this as our sand ceremony vows – we will have 3 glass vases and one big vase – 3 colors of sand, one for the minister, one for me and one for my husband to pour into one common vessel which gives a visual representation of us “joining together” – http://boards.weddingbee.com/topic/our-sand-ceremony-wording
I’m pretty excited about that. 🙂 we are doing the traditional vows and not writing our own – but this gives it such a uniqueness to our ceremony and I can’t wait!
Post # 10
We had a civil wedding in February because my husband is Canadian and we needed to get married to begin his Green Card Paperwork. We had a very intimate dinner with just our immediate families and had our officiant come and sign the marriage license. We didn’t even have an actual “civil ceremony”, it was honestly just signing a piece of paper and then having dinner.
We are planning a bigger wedding with extended family and friends in September once his paperwork is complete and he can move to the US (the ironic thing is that we live in border cities so his house is only 15 minutes from mine, but the US Gov’t is making us jump through a million hoops to finally live together!). We are doing everything that goes along with a “traditional” wedding, gown, wedding party, rings, flowers, pictures….
The only people who seem to have a problem with it are my parents. They keep referring to it as our “religious ceremony” because they are convinced that everyone else will think it’s weird that we are already legally married but still having a wedding.
In reality, everyone else is VERY supportive of us and excited to finally get to celebrate our marriage. If people love you, they just want to celebrate your love and see you happy, no matter what the occasion.
I say go forward with doing whatever your heart desires! You deserve to have your day, even if it’s a bit delayed!