Happy Anniversary to Us!

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Yesterday was our 11th wedding anniversary. We ran errands, visited a friend to pick up a bicycle, my oldest had a taekwondo sparring class, we all took a naps…. kind of a typical Saturday for us. Then my husband got on a plane heading to the east coast for a few days of work while I tried not to rage-clean our house since we have family coming to visit this week.

We rarely do much to celebrate our anniversary, it happens to fall during a busy time of year, and a week before our oldest son’s birthday. We don’t take much time to do something special that would likely require a babysitter. Sometimes we’ll go out to dinner, but usually all the celebrating that happens is when we both change our FB profile pictures to a fond memory from our wedding day. As silly as that is, it’s fun to reminisce.

Instead, we try our damnedest to take those dinners out when we DO have the chance, it’s just rarely ON our anniversary. If anything, we have Parent’s Night Out once a month when our kids spend four hours at our taekwondo studio and we go out do dinner and usually do some grocery shopping sans kids.

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Yesterday I showed our boys this photo from our wedding and at least they recognized us. We had Chinese lion dancers at our wedding; my husband’s request. They were so awesome!! When my youngest son saw the lion dancer, he thought it was Santa Claus.

I chatted with a friend a while back and we discussed how much has changed in the wedding planning world since we got married 10+ years ago. If we were getting married again (hypothetical, of course), would we do anything different?? For me, not a ton. Although the awesome Chinese restaurant where we had our reception is no longer there. Aside from that, I still love most of what my husband and I planned for our wedding.

  • I’d wear more interesting jewelry. I think what I wore barely shows up in photos and I would have liked something with a little more bling. Even more so with the jewelry I wore with my Chinese reception gown. The necklace was an heirloom from my husband’s late grandma (I’d still wear that), but I wish I’d worn some rad, chandelier earrings.

  • I’d ditch the veil. It got snagged on a rose bush as my dad and I were walking toward the aisle and popped right off my head. I didn’t wear it at all at the reception, so it was kind of a waste.

  • Spend more money on photography and communicate better with the photographer. We have lots of good photos, but also lots that are missing because our photographer insisted on a photojournalistic style (no pics of my mom and me, no pics of my siblings and me, stuff like that). I kept my photography budget very small, but we ended up saving money elsewhere and we could’ve spent more on another photographer.

  • Skip the videography.

  • Choose different bridesmaids. Two of them are no longer part of my life, so I’d obviously have different ones now. But two would still be there.

  • I’d design my invitations only a little differently… not the pocketfold construction or the Chinese portion, but I’d use different fonts and make it less wordy on the English side. I still love the Chinese brocade pattern I created for the paper and the colors.

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That’s it. I wouldn’t change anything else. I still love the colors, I still love both of my wedding gowns (although, I’m certain that my post-baby boobs won’t rock my JCrew wedding gown again). I love what my bridesmaids and the dudes wore. I love that we had an American ceremony and a Chinese banquet; allowing lots of our American friends and family to try Chinese banquet food for the first time. I love that we got to share the day with so many friends and family; many of whom had flown in from different states and different countries.

If you were getting married again, would you do anything differently?

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Last year we did do more celebrating than usual for our 10th anniversary. We spent a weekend in Las Vegas and renewed our wedding vows at the Graceland Wedding Chapel. Elvis himself preformed the ceremony. It was cheesy and silly, but also lots of fun. You can see the invitation I created for the little event here. After the short ceremony (that included a few songs sung by Elvis), we all had dinner at The Wicked Spoon at the Cosmopolitan Hotel. We only had a few friends there, but it was seriously so much fun. It’s so rare for my husband and me to do something that’s just for us.

 Photo by Cari Hollis

Photo by Cari Hollis

Any ideas on what we should do for our 20th anniversary?? Our boys will be 17 and 13 (oh geez, that’s terrifying to consider). By then maybe we can leave them home without a babysitter, right??