My wedding to Jim Bob almost 30 years ago was sweet and simple. We got married in our church where our pastor officiated our ceremony. At the time, our church was still being built so we were meeting in a big gymnasium for services. We actually got married in the hallway of the building — we had set up folding chairs to use as pews! And we did the exact same thing when we renewed our vows 25 years later.
I wanted to do as much as I could myself as a way to save money and keep the expenses reasonable. We didn’t buy flowers and barely even decorated the hall. Our backdrop was a lattice that we had woven through with crepe paper. Our colors were all pastels; yellow, pink, green and blue. I even made my own bouquet using fake flowers so I could keep them to decorate my home with later. When my sister arrived from out of town and noticed that I didn’t have any flowers, she offered to create a flower display to put up behind the altar area. She used silk flowers and made a beautiful arrangement.
For the wedding cake, I made it myself and froze it. A friend decorated it for me using icing that she made with ingredients I bought for her. Another special touch was wearing Jim Bob’s mother’s wedding dress as my dress. Everything we did for our wedding was so inexpensive, but perfect for us. We wanted to spend our money on our honeymoon, which was our first time to be alone together.
The reception was very simple with cake, nuts and punch. It was such a sweet time! We invited our closest friends and family (about 200 people). When we had our 25th anniversary renewal of our vows, we repeated the same reception style with the same songs and even the same pastor.
Although we didn’t videotape our wedding, we took a lot of pictures and we had it recorded on cassette tape. As our children were growing up, we would listen to our wedding cassette again every year on our anniversary. We would reenact the ceremony, show them how we walked down the aisle and tell them the stories about what it was like. It was a great moment to share with them in such a special way.