So I figured since I churned out a few batches of cookies for my own wedding and they turned out pretty good, I might as well offer up my services to the cousins, especially ones having small weddings where my dad’s doing almost the entire cookie table. She was hesitant to ask, since we’d just gotten done with our own wedding, and I was like, “Nah, it’s all over. Nothing left to do.” So when I had some free time, I’d throw a batch in the oven until we ended up with a few dozen of a few different types of cookies.

So, my attitude towards baking is sort of indifference. I’ll admit now that I’ve done it a couple times, I’m more confident and enjoying it a little more, but I am still definitely not the type to bake just, like, for fun. I love the finished product, though, and even though I did it for my own wedding, that felt more like another part of the planning–I wanted people to like them, sure, but it was low on my list of concerns that day. This time, though, I’d walk past the cookie table and see how things were going. And part of that was friendly(ish) competition with my dad. Since all of the cookies were made by just the two of us, with the exception of some from Eat N Park, we were each insisting we made the better cookies.

And competition part aside, the wedding did have an element of being a bride versus being a guest. It wasn’t even a matter of, say, comparing the two weddings–it was, “Ah, it’s nice to show up, eat, drink, & have a good time rather than put the whole shebang together.” And don’t get me wrong, my wedding was fun and I wasn’t particularly stressed, but it’s still a lot to do and being a guest was a nice change. And for me, at least, there’s a difference between being a wedding guest before you getting married and being a wedding guest after. Maybe by the next one, it won’t matter, but after I got engaged, I was thinking about things differently, wondering what I’d do for my own, and after, you’re well familiar with the cost and logistics.

It was a nice wedding. My cousin was technically already married, having done it last December because he’s in the military, so this was more the big party. I’ve said this before–I have kind of a strange attitude about marriage, particularly for a newlywed, but one of the better things about it is feeling loved by a 150 people, not just one, and really celebrating. Maybe “it’s a fun party” isn’t the best pro-marriage argument. Then again, maybe it is.

So this was a church ceremony, a gap while they took pictures, and then dinner and dancing. This is where the non-Catholic weddings always get me, because no matter how aware I am that we’re one of the only ones who have a whole big, long ceremony, I’m always surprised to go to a wedding that’s like 20 minutes late. But I appreciate a ceremony that gets to the point, and again, I say this as a bride who not only had a full Catholic mass but also paid for the choir to sing. Like I said, strange attitude.

We spent the downtime at my parents’ house, and by then, it was a Duke-less house, which was strange and sad and just not the same. I’ll talk about him more another time, but of the three dogs we had, Duke was the one I was closest to and the one whose loss stung the longest and hardest.

The rest of the evening was partying, and we stayed until the DJ stopped playing and had ourselves a good time. Paul and I dusted off our dance moves, and we’ve resolved to go back to dance classes–eventually. They were expensive, but I’ve found another nearby studio where we can pay like 10 bucks for individual lessons and I want to at least get us in there by the spring so we can look smooth for the next wedding. We ate a lot, we drank a lot, we had a good time and spent the night at my parents’ house. Brandon’s old room is now a guest room, and it’s where I spent the night before our wedding. Granted, I didn’t sleep much, but it’s a nice, cozy room, and Marriage Advantage is being able to sleep in the same bed at our parents’ houses now. I never pushed that, even though we’ve been living together for a few years. Marriage has a way of legitimizing things, for better or worse.

We’d wanted to spend the next morning in the mountains, but the weather wasn’t great for it and we kind of slept in late. So we stopped at the mall and then ate hibachi instead.

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