A few months before we headed to Gatlinburg, Tennessee, my best friend and I were sitting at dinner when she got the brilliant idea for us to renew our wedding vows while we were down there. She knows how my first wedding was not something fairy tales are made of – from the drunk hair stylist, to the caterer’s emergency surgery, to arriving at the church almost late for the wedding… the second time had to be better, right?
Few people know this – or remember – but Don and I made plans to “elope” to Gatlinburg rather than have a church wedding. That was ruined when my mom found out. She immediately started the church wedding campaign, and when my brother died, I decided to just go along with it. There hasn’t been a day that has gone by that I wish we hadn’t eloped! Because, everything went wrong at our wedding… you can read all about it here.
When Danielle brought up renewing our vows in Gatlinburg, we immediately began planning… all while sitting at dinner. Two days later, I had plans in place and an unsuspecting groom. The plan was to not tell Don and the twins, just tell them we needed to be somewhere in time for the wedding. Then, things started to fall apart. I didn’t like my dress, my shoes were too big, and I didn’t know how I was going to get Don into dress clothes without any questions. I regrouped and decided to give Don and the kids an “invitation” to the wedding. Which worked, kinda.
Until Don said no to dress pants, dress shirt, and a tie. And then he told me he was wearing his orange tennis shoes. (God help me, why can I not have good wedding pictures?!) But, sometimes you need to compromise… right? That’s what a marriage is. So, I said yes to the shoes… (knowing I was going to tell the photographer to not get them in some of the photos.) Compromise, folks.
We chose the Chapel in the Glen, which is a beautiful and rustic wedding setting. The women who work in the office were amazing – they were very helpful with every decision we made about the ceremony. Our minister was Bill – and according to the ladies in the office – he is a legend in the Smoky Mountains. When he heard this, he laughed and said, “I don’t know if that is good or bad.”
Everything went right for this wedding… we were on time, no one was drunk, and the cops didn’t steal our food. Don didn’t stand me up at the alter. The kids walked me down the aisle to Pachabel’s Canon. Bill performed a beautiful service. And, now… after sixteen years… I have official wedding pictures.