It’s been quite a week. I don’t know where to start. To say it was exciting would be putting it mildly.
We had a wedding, and a grand wedding it was.
I don’t want to be faulted as being a doting lola (and I am that) using her column to promote her own, so I will spare you most of the details.
Forgive me. But I am still in wedding mode and, therefore, gushing with pride and love for my granddaughter, Alex, who married her best friend Chris last Sunday.
It was not a destination wedding. We didn’t have to fly anywhere far from home. It was held in the home of the groom’s lola right in our neighborhood.
Permit me to say it was beautiful. Moving. It was difficult to stop the tears from pouring.
How I managed to keep my mascara from dribbling down my chin was a feat in itself.
Allow me a few highlights.
The weather was perfect. It was cool and breezy under the huge old acacia tree where family and friends gathered to witness love in full flower.
It was almost sundown by the time the ceremony got underway, and we saw streaks of pink and orange in the deepening blue sky. No one could have painted a more breathtaking backdrop.
It was elegant, but warm and friendly, as much today as it was traditional.
Guests arrived pretty much on time, and it looked like a fashion parade. We observed long gowns, frilly frocks, formal suits, a couple of fascinators even, a profusion of baby’s breath, tulle, satin and lace. And sneakers. Go figure.
Music from a lone cello filled the air while guests found their seats. When the entourage walked in, led by the groom and his brother/best man, a piano joined in. “When I Fall in Love.”
The bride arrived in a vintage Mercedes, I think a 1950 model or thereabouts. She was stunning as she walked on the arm of her visibly emotional father. Above the oohs and ahhs that greeted her entrance we heard the trio, now with a saxophone, playing “It Had To Be You.”
No vocals. None were needed.
The ceremony was short and sweet, the personal vows meaningful and touching. Kleenex!
We enjoyed cocktails and a live band played poolside while the newlyweds posed for pictures still under the tree.
And a short walk away an amazing buffet dinner, catered by Margarita Fores, was served in the chandelier-festooned air-conditioned tennis court that looked nothing short of spectacular.
It was one very special night indeed. I still get misty-eyed remembering.
I normally get pretty weepy at this time of year. Don’t ask me why. All the trappings of the holidays can get one overly sentimental and nostalgic I guess.
And the other night, I watched the last couple of scenes from “It’s a Wonderful Life,” an old Frank Capra Christmas movie with James Stewart and Donna Reed. People my age will remember it well.
I think we watched this movie every Christmas when we lived in Hawaii and California. And I know I cried each time we did; especially at the end when Clarence the angel, gets his wings.
They don’t make movies like that anymore. What a shame. I believe every child should watch it. It won’t hurt for grownups to do the same. It restores your faith in human kindness, reminds you that you are on earth for a purpose.
What are we teaching?
Christmas has started to mean other things to the children of today. Why is that? Have we stopped talking to them about hope and salvation?
I recently talked to a children’s church teacher who was frustrated about the limited time she has with the kids every Sunday. I reminded her that even big schools with more hours still fall short. It is at home, with the parents, that children must be taught.
And now we ask the question: “How have we raised their parents?”
As another New Year dawns, our minds click on resolution buttons to check if we are ready with our long list of dos and don’ts. Those of us who are overweight go on diets. Chain-smokers set their goals on quitting at the stroke of midnight.
Lean and clean in 2019!
That is all very good, and yes, it’s time to cut down on my sweets and calories. But all that is for me, for my benefit.
Let us look beyond ourselves for a change. We must set our minds and our hearts on giving back. I can think of no better time to get started.
Oscar-winning actor and director Denzel Washington says it like this: “At the end of the day, it’s not about what you have or even what you’ve accomplished. It’s about who you’ve lifted up, who you’ve made better. It’s about what you’ve given back.”
The world today is obsessed with political correctness. Some are too extreme and look at every word or action with the narrowest frame of mind. And they miss the big picture. I suggest that we widen our lens a little.
Let me quote best-selling author Steve Maraboli.
“You want to keep the Christ in Christmas? Feed the hungry, clothe the naked, forgive the guilty, welcome the unwanted, care for the ill, love your enemies, and do unto others as you would have done unto you.”