Posts Tagged ‘family’

Step we gaily on we go!

October 16, 2012 Leave a comment

Heel and hell and toe and toe. Arm in arm and on we go, all for Maire’s wedding!

As soon as we were engaged I knew I wanted to find some way to involve my nieces and nephews in the wedding, especially since Charles claims it was partly Joseph’s doing that he proposed (Joseph held Charles at gun point and asked when he was going to marry me…granted, it was a nerf gun).

Enter the kid parade.

We decided it would be more fun for all the kids if we also asked our guests to bring their kids. In total, I think there were at least 25 kids running around the yard throughout the night.

To help them gather together and get to know each other…and to help start the party…we asked for all the kids who wanted to participate to gather at the very beginning of the reception. My brother’s oldest son (the one with the nerf gun) led the kids to the back yard where the bridal party met them.

Charles distributed noise makers and ribbon wands and musical instruments and several members of the band led them with music.

The only major things to go wrong at the party happened during the parade (Leo was scared by the drums and Joseph forgot the parade route) but we all went with it and had a great time anyway.
It was so much fun! And such a fantastic way to start a party.


Categories: Family, Wedding Tags: , ,

Recap – Preparing for the party

October 10, 2012 Leave a comment

So how does one throw the biggest party Siler has ever seen?

Thankfully, I took the week off the party to prepare. And was it ever a busy week! The only thing that kept me sane was breaking my t0-do list up by day and recopying the list each morning so it looked more and more manageable as the days went on.

The first rentals to arrive were the toilets. Those that follow the Gypsy wedding shows may know that several of the episodes were filmed not too far from the McCarthy Farm. (Who knew?? This show had me second guessing a few people I grew up with. I thought they were just rednecks…maybe not!)

Because of this, I referred to these as our gypsy toilets for the rest of the week (given that Gypsies don’t put bathrooms inside their houses). And by wedding time, they were starting to appear more like bathrooms and less like Johnny Blues. We covered the logo on the front of this one with a wreath, added some nice paper hand towels and candles, and my bridesmaid Lauren even had the awesome idea to hang pictures inside to make them appear more festive (though several guests complained about having Charles stare at them while they went about their business).

A day or two later, the tent arrived. My brother’s family wasn’t home when set up began, so when they got home it looked like the circus had arrived!

Watching the workers drive all those stakes into the ground (they were four or five feet long!) really made me appreciate the fact that I work at a desk…and that I was being paid to take a two-week break from that job!

Right before the wedding, we had a different sort of job to get done.

Sure a reception on a farm sounds like a fun everyone but the resident chicken.

We weren’t too worried about the chicken bothering guests, but moreso about the guests bothering the chicken. To make sure she still had feathers left on her when the party was over, the kids were rounded up (Lauren included) and asked to catch the chicken and put her in her house (where the chicken house is…I still don’t know).

And in the weeks leading up to the party, Charles had taken several loads (several or many??) of liquor and other supplies out to the farm. My brother was kind enough to let us store stuff in their basement.

But how would we get those cases and cases (seriously…if you were there…did you see how many cases?) of booze from the basement (which opens into the back yard) into the bar in the front yard?

Well, why else would you own a tractor?

There was certainly more work in that last week than we expected, but in the end, I think we all thought it was worth it.

Huge kudos to my brother, his wife, and their six kids for completely turning their house (and lives) upside down for me and my day! I couldn’t have done it without them!

My Name is Zoom and I live on the Moon…

October 5, 2012 Leave a comment

But I came down to earth just to sing this tune, cause hey! It’s my birthday!

Or something like that…

Since we celebrated our wedding for four months, it only makes sense that my birthday gets at least a month, right?

My birth-month began at Nationals Park with the Nats clinching the NL East. YAY!

On the second day, our good friend’s mom had us over for a fabulous fall dinner. Apple crisp. Yum!

At Monday’s game. Michael Morse included us in his champagne celebration.

On the third day, the Nats closed the season leading the entire league.

And yesterday, one of my super-fun cousins had twins!

I can’t wait to see what’s in store tonight…



Looking Back…Does it have to be over?

October 4, 2012 2 comments

Photo by

I have to be honest with myself. I’m pretty sure I’ve stayed away from blogging for so long because I knew that the moment I started posting recaps would be the moment that I was admitting my wedding celebration was over.

But I’ve already cleaned any wedding apps off of Facebook, deleted my wedding boards on Pinterest, and pretty much stalked the profiles of every one of our wedding attendees to make sure I haven’t missed seeing any photos they’ve posted (and believe me, that took some time!)

And since no new photos have been posted for a while…I guess it’s time to look back!

Honestly, after planning our wedding the way we did, I don’t know why anyone in their right mind chooses to have their wedding and reception on the same day!

We were so calm on both mornings. I can’t imagine having tried to go to the church before the reception and still staying that calm.

Photo by Summer. The drums scared Leo. He got the best seat in the kid parade.

We got to spend even more time with our bridal party members and closest family members by having two events.

Best of all, I got to wear my dress TWICE! (For the record, I had a dress to change in to when I got uncomfortable…I never got uncomfortable. I didn’t take my wedding dress off until I got tired of kicking the bustle out of the way because the cheapie ribbons they charge you way too much money for wouldn’t stay attached).

Photo by Summer. Evidently, I was supposed to dip the other way.

Overall, it was just a wonderful excuse for us to be reminded of how blissfully happy we were on May 28…and to share it with about 300 of our closest friends and family members!

Our day wasn’t perfect, there were a few bumps in the road leading up to the reception (replacement bartenders called in, tent rentals being super late, scared kids in the kid parade, I botched the dip at the end of our first dance and Charles nearly dropped me…). But we were already married. What was the worst that could happen if everything didn’t go right?

And several “mistakes” made for lovely photos, and even better memories that we’ll never forget!

Categories: Wedding Tags: , ,

What’s in a name?

That which we call a rose by any other name would smell as sweet.

I’m not so sure I’ve always felt this way…

Today I got a wedding present at work…New business cards bearing my new name.

It’s not official yet. It takes a few weeks in Virginia to even be able to request a copy of your marriage license. But it might take me two weeks to get used to the new name.

As you can tell by what I named my blog, I’m pretty partial to my maiden name. I love my Mc. It’s hard to imagine not having a last name with two capital letters.

There plenty of feminist debate out there surrounding why a woman shouldn’t change her name. But I’ve never cared about all that.

I just simply love the name my parents gave me. It has a certain ring to it. It speaks to my culture – both religion and heritage. And it just plain sounds nice!

I tried to convince Charles to add the Mc to his last name…he didn’t really go for it.

But I’ve figured out how to keep it for myself.

Luckily (based on what I’ve read so far) in Virginia, a person can have two middle names if they so wish. Why wouldn’t I just drop my middle name and take my maiden as my middle? Like so many Catholic girls, my name growing up was not just Mary. So many close family called me Mary Frances, and although I hated it as a child, I grew to really love it. I can’t get rid of my Frances

But I also feel the need to keep my Mc.

So instead of changing my identity at all, I’ll simply be tacking Charles’ last name on to the end of my full given name. That’s the way relationships are anyway, right? I didn’t change or give up any part of myself to be with him or marry him, but instead, he’s become a part of me.

So when asked for a middle initial, it will be Mc.

Like many things in life, I’ve gotten my way in the end. Once I can finally change it legally, I’ll have succeeded in becoming Mary Mc Lastname. Now to re-learn how to make a cursive H so I can sign it…


June 5, 2012 2 comments

In planning my wedding, I like to think I was somewhat not the “normal” bride.

There were no bridezilla moments.

I didn’t cry over trying to find the exact shade of green for my bridesmaids to wear.

Even when we ended up having to redo our invitations to make the announcements, I think I handled it rather calmly.

But a few details I did pay close attention to were my “somethings.”

Something old – Since I was going with a vintage feel for the wedding, several things fit that bill. What I finally decided to do was to tie to my bouquet the pocket watch Mom gave to Dad when they were dating. In it, Mom had inscribed “For those who love, time is not,” from Henry van Dyke’s “Time is” poem.

Time is
Too Slow for those who Wait,
Too Swift for those who Fear,
Too Long for those who Grieve,
Too Short for those who Rejoice;
But for those who Love,
Time is not.

Something new – My dress of course! Even the dress shopping experience was unconventional. No one cried. There was no screaming “This is the one!!” I actually had to go back with a bridesmaid because I doubted my decision the same night I tried the dress on.

No doubts anymore though. I can’t wait to get to wear the dress a second time. And I think I love it even more after I added sleeves to it.

If you look closely, you can also see the pocket watch.

Something Borrowed – Honestly, I can’t remember if Megan offered first or if I asked her if I could borrow it, but my “borrowed” something was my sister in law’s veil.

My mom wore her sister’s veil when she got married, so she didn’t have one for me to use. I remembered Megan’s veil being simple and ivory, so we kept that in mind as we went dress shopping.

What I hadn’t remembered was how beautiful the Irish lace on the veil was or how intricate tiny pearls were sewn into the lace. It only added to the excitement that the veil was packed away because of home renovations. Megan didn’t dig it out until the week before the wedding. I didn’t get to try it on until the very last minute. But it was perfect!

And in keeping with Irish tradition, Megan (a happily married woman) was there to put the veil on me on Monday morning.

Something blue – Originally, I thought of using a Silverado blue rosary that belonged to my father in my bouquet. But after reading the pocket watch inscription, I was sure I preferred to carry that. I also wanted to use it because I remember the care my father took when he wore the watch on special occasions. I knew if he had walked me down the aisle, the watch would have been with him. I needed it with me too.

Anyway, all this thought given to my father walking down the aisle, and I knew I’d need a hanky. But I didn’t want just any old hanky, I wanted my father’s hanky.

Sure enough, Mom had saved just a few of Dad’s handkerchiefs. I asked her if I could take one when I was home a few months ago because I wanted to embroider my wedding date on it in blue so that it could be my something blue.

She said no. She wanted to do it for me.

Some of the only tears I shed in the hours leading up to my wedding were when she gave me the box holding the hanky. It was as if Dad was talking directly to me when I lifted the lid and read “Angel Face.” It was perfect. And so much more special to me than the date alone would have been.

From that very moment on through the next day when I carried the hanky in my pocket, I knew he was with me.

My biggest fear leading up to my wedding was that I would miss my father so much that the emotion of that would overshadow the rest of the day. …That I’d burst into tears walking down the aisle with my brother because he wasn’t my father. …That I’d be sad at the reception because there was no father/daughter dance.

But amazingly, the complete opposite happened. Instead of being upset that he wasn’t there, it was as if I was overcome with how much he WAS there, and how proud he was on that day, and how happy he would want me to be.

Miss Mary is a Mrs!

June 4, 2012 4 comments

Yes folks. Part of the reason for my absenteeism over the last couple of months has been that I just couldn’t bare to blog without sharing the exciting news that Charles and I decided to get married early.

We found out earlier this year that Charles would have to move out of his house earlier than we planned. It didn’t make any sense for him to rent another place for the summer, but at the same time, we’d planned all along to get married before he moved into my (now our!) house.

I asked him what he thought of getting married early, and he gave the perfect response.

“Whatever will make you happy.”

In February, we finished meeting with the priest to complete the church-related marriage prep. As we wrapped up and the priest checked his notes, he commented on how long our engagement seemed and to let him know if we wanted to get married any earlier.

Little did he know we’d take him up on this offer!

So with about 30 of our very closest friends and family in the pews, we married on Memorial day at my local church with the priest who did our marriage prep.

In many ways, it was a relief!

I didn’t have to worry about being the center of 500 people’s attention during the ceremony.

We didn’t have to worry about vendors showing up for the huge party afterward.

We made it to our honeymoon suite by 5 p.m. and weren’t nearly as tired as we’d have been had we had a giant party afterward. We were able to enjoy a quiet dinner together and reflect on our day instead of just passing out from exhaustion.

We were able to talk to and thank each and every one of the 30ish guests who shared in that day with us.

And perhaps most of all, instead of feeling a little disappointed that the fun is all over, we still have a huge party in September to look forward to! And I get to wear my dress twice!

I will never know how people manage to elope without telling anyone. It was SO hard not to mention my wedding on Facebook or blog about my feelings in those last few days leading up to it.

But I couldn’t be more sure that the early wedding was the right decision for both of us.

Charles apologized to me on Friday. He said if he’d known marriage would make him this happy, we’d have done it years ago!

Categories: Wedding Tags: , ,