Destination: Bodega Bay, CA; The Wedding of Joy & David, July 14, 2007

Joy & David RehearsalJoy & David Day OfJoy & David Next Day

The raison d’etre for our trip back to the States this July and August was to participate in the wedding of my one and most special sibling Joy to her most suitable and complimentary partner David.

The wedding of the year some said (well, at least in Guidi & Wygant circles).

It was a destination wedding, with guests flying in from around the country to celebrate in style over a period of days.

Joy the PrincessBachBach2

As matron of honor, I had a myriad of duties to perform. Not the least being to throw a bachelorette/bridal shower weekend party. Planned from New Zealand, I arrived in San Francisco two days before the shower weekend. With my sombadine Christina (David’s sister), we filled the car with all the treats and goodies we needed and drove up to the party site which happened to be our friends Jack and Nane’s beautiful Victorian weekend home in Cazadero (Sonoma County, near Russian River). BBQ, swimming, safari-themed, signature drinks, and some naughty-yet-appropriate games were on the agenda for the twelve gals in attendance. A lot of laughs and giggles were shared by all.

Making gift bags

I was also responsible for tending to any last minute tasks delegated to me by the expert-project-manager-and-bride-to-be. This included getting sticky labels off of 100 wine-stopper party favors (which required a special concoction of dipping in hot water and then rubbing with olive oil), sourcing a few last minute objects for the wedding reception and making and delivering sixty ‘welcome snack bags’ for the motel-staying-wedding-guests. What a laugh we had putting these together with mom, dad, and grandma all part of the assembly operations team!

Ah, and most importantly, it was my job and desire to write a wedding toast which would fully honor the union of Joy and David. I take these things very seriously and started thinking about this the day they told us about the wedding almost a year ago. Hubby Bruce was also asked to make a toast. Some time back in January, we came up with the clever idea of singing a duet at the wedding. Neither Bruce nor I sang (well, Bruce did do karaoke, but I would never dream of getting up in front of a crowd). Not to be deterred by this little fact, we solicited one of our New Zealand friends who is a professionally trained singer to give us some lessons. And for the last six months we went for weekly lessons at Gen’s place. And we learned to sing. First just random songs that we picked out and enjoyed, and then back in April, Bruce wrote wedding song lyrics to a popular 80’s tune. It was great. We practiced and refined for nine weeks and were as prepared as we could be. We secretly contacted the wedding DJ and roped him into our plan. Ssssssssssshhhhhhhhhh, it’s a secret! {keep reading if you want to know more!}

The wedding was held at the Sonoma Coast Villa & Spa situated on 28 acres of rolling pastureland about eight miles from the coastal town of Bodega. Specifically catering to weddings, this was the perfect locale with eighteen upscale guest rooms (enough to accommodate the bride and groom, twelve person wedding party, significant others, and family), a swimming pool, indoor/outdoor dining areas, and gorgeous landscaped lawns and gardens. The perfect place, surrounded by nature, to host a beautiful wedding celebration.

GranThurs dinner

And what a celebration it was. Mom, dad, and 95-year-old-whippersnapper gran arrived from Florida on Wednesday afternoon. After a night in town, the wedding party, other family, Joy & David, and the Guidi clan arrived on site Thursday afternoon. Twenty-five of us went out for a casual dinner, which gave us the opportunity to reacquaint or introduce ourselves to the other wedding party members.

Wine TastingWine Tasting2

On Friday, a local wine-tasting outing was arranged by Joy & David and participated in by the thirty-plus guests who had arrived the night before. The Wygant and Guidi family members (parents, gran, me, Bruce, and Christina) elected to stay behind and practice our speeches by the sun-drenched poolside. Ah, R&R!

Friday afternoon was an hour-long ceremony rehearsal where we all got to meet the bohemian and affable officiant, Judith. Afterwards sixty-plus guests attended a rehearsal dinner and were treated to a lovely welcoming speech delivered by David’s best man and father, Tom Wygant. There was lots of excitement as friends reunited from Cornell, SMU, Stanford, and Harvard.

CindarellaChampagne toast

Saturday. Showtime! A day filled of preparations!. The bridesmaids had a private suite in which to get ready, have our hair done (first call for hair was 9 am!), and savor the moment with Joy. The groomsmen, I think, had a bit more of a relaxing schedule. We all had to be ready by two pm for photos. We bridesmaids, in our chocolate brown dresses with cream colored sashes, posed for photos with a colorful rainbow of parasols. Two hours of phototastic fun! Joy and David looked gorgeous/handsome in their wedding digs and were perfect hams for the camera!

Joy & GroomsmenDavid & BridesmaidsParasols

Four p.m. Judith performed a beautiful ceremony, regaling us with the story of Joy and David’s courtship (among other things) and reminded us to ground with the earth and call in the ancestors to join us in witnessing this union. Joy radiated with excitement. Clouds billowed and the wind rustled through the trees. The excitement was contagious as everyone shouted in unison, “We now pronounce you husband and wife!”

Joy Mom DadBride & GroomCake!

More photos, cocktail hour, and then the outdoor reception. Nine tables nestled among four mature and light filled trees. Buffet style dinner. Outdoor dance floor and D.J. Speeches given by the best man, groom, father-of-the-bride, matron-of-honor, bridesmaids, groomsmen, and other friends. I was quite nervous to perform and had been holding it together by staying focused on the desired outcome – success. And successful it was! The music started, everyone recognized the tune, and then the words belted out by Bruce & myself. Laughter and applause. The look of shock on Joy’s and others faces as we sang and swayed on the dance floor. Afterwards guests came up to us the rest of the night and the next day and offered up much praise and accolades. What a great feeling!

Kathy & Bruce performMore singing

And now, without further ado, the lyrics of The Joy & David wedding song, sung to the tune of “Don’t You Want Me Baby” by The Human League:

Kristin took Joy to a party at a cocktail bar
Though Joy wanted to chill
David went to say goodbye to his departing roommate
Joy met David, what a thrill
Now three years later on they’ve got the world at their feet
Success for them is always there
They took their time, they looked around and then they both chose
And now they’re such a lovely pair!

Joy, Joy and David
You know that we’re so happy that you found each other
Joy, Joy and David
You know that we’re so happy that you got together
And now the deed is done
The two of you are one
Now all you have in front of you is celebration

We love you Joy and David, Oh we love you oh
We love you Joy and David, Oh we love you oh

It’s amazing when you think about how sweet they are
Their parents are too.
With sisters like this I don’t think you’ll ever go wrong
And Grandma Nettie’s there for you.

Three single years together have been such good fun
There’s more for you
And now the strength of many will be lifting you up
It’s not just the two of you

Dave, David Wygant
You know that we’re so happy we can call you brother
Tom, Thomas Wygant,
Your long loving relationship with Hannalore
Carmella and Hugo
Are examples that will show
This young couple the path towards a life together

We love you Joy and David, Oh we love you oh
We love you Joy and David, Oh we love you oh

It appears that no one except the professional videographer captured our debut performance and so, unfortunately, we all must wait patiently for the wedding compilation. I will post as soon as I can.

DancingFamily danceFather Daughter dance

The remainder of the evening was filled with DJ Goyo playing some funky house beats which got the majority of the guests including mom and dad throwing it down on the dance floor. Outdoor dance party under the stars. The food was delicious. The three-tiered cake, made by friend Karen, melted in your mouth. Smiles, laughter, and joy. A post party was held nearby at a friends rented house which went on to the wee hours of the morn.

Sunday morning brunch was served for fifty guests. A time to reflect and laugh at the events of the night before. To tell stories. To share photos. To get in last minute conversations before everyone dispersed across the country.

Joy and David left the next day for a two-week safari honeymoon in Zambia. Bruce & I had the Guidi clan for another few days which we enjoyed with them in Cazadero relaxing by the stream, playing cards, and shooting pool. A perfect way to end this celebratory gathering.

Yes, we love you Joy & David. And to quote from dad’s speech “May your lives be filled with lots of love, good health, and lots of children!.” You da’ best. Enjoy!