Honoring Our History

From the beginning, one of the things that has been most important to us with our wedding is to bring together and celebrate family and friends. I love the fact that each family has its own quirks and eccentricities, in addition to its shared cultural  history. I love the story my mother tells about the time she thinking she was doing something nice for my dad by making homemade mac and cheese for dinner, only to have him ask “um…where’s dinner?” In my mother’s family, they’d sometimes have mac & cheese for dinner after a long day — the kids loved it, and it was easy for my grandmother to make after a long shift at the hospital (she was a nurse). Well, it never occurred to my mother that other people DIDN’T ever have just mac & cheese for dinner, and it never occurred to my father that they DID! 

T and I haven’t come across too many things like that so far — things that we grew up thinking were perfectly normal, but the other didn’t — but I love the differences that make families unique. One of the things that I really want to incorporate into our wedding is a recognition of the shared history and cultures of our families.

We’ll be incorporating our own shared Southern roots (if you can say an Army brat has “roots” anywhere, mine are in the South!) into the menu for the reception, which will have strong Southern and Cajun overtones.

Among many other things, my family is German, and Scottish (and Swedish, and Native American, and etc, etc, etc). T’s family is also Scottish and German (plus a BIG dose of British!!). While we won’t be incorporating Scottish and German wedding traditions in a big way, it will show up in small ways throughout the evening. For example, we’re planning on having a coffee and sweets bar at the end of the night instead of traditional favors, and I’d like to offer German cookies and Scottish shortbread.

One German wedding tradition I’ve always thought was really interesting was that of the wedding cup. I was so excited to see Annie’s post on EAD the other day — I haven’t seen any recent weddings that featured this tradition, and I think it’s a beautiful take on the whole “link arms and try to drink” thing. 

weddingcup

{Blue World Studios}

According to legend, the first wedding cup was created by a young goldsmith in love with a nobleman’s daughter. The nobleman agreed that the couple could marry if the young suitor could create a cup from which both could drink  at the same time, without spilling a drop — seemingly an impossible task. But, as in all good stories, the goldsmith proved equal to the task, creating a hinged cup. The use of the cup became a German wedding tradition — if the couple could drink from the cup at their wedding without spilling, they are supposed to have good luck in their marriage. My parents used a German bridal cup at their wedding, and I hope we can do the same.

What traditions (family or otherwise) are you incorporating into your day?

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Published in: on March 23, 2009 at 10:46 am  Comments (1)  
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  1. Oh wow I must have been channeling you, girl! I didn’t read your post before I blogged about this kind of thing. (well, sort of.) I *love* the German cup tradition! We are still looking into Dutch/Ukrainian traditions. I am struggling with how *much* tradition to include!

    But your cup touch is totally perfect.


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