Thursday, July 30, 2015

Saying Yes to the Dress--and to Flo Rida!

During Christmas vacation in 1979, in the middle of my senior year at the College of the Holy Cross, in Worcester, MA, I was home with my family in Plattsburgh, NY.  It was during that break, sometime around New Year's, that my longtime boyfriend and I took each set of parents out for a drink, separately, to break the news that we were going to get married (and that it would probably happen the following December, since he would be in flight school after graduation and Christmas was the only sure time he would be able to take leave).

There was no diamond ring involved (we were two poor college students!), no getting down on one knee, no hoopla.  We had been dating since the summer following our freshman year in high school when we were both 15, with a couple of brief, mutually agreed upon "breaks" to make sure that we weren't holding each other back; at this point the two of us had been privately planning our future together for about two solid years.  By the time we broke the big news to our folks, it was pretty much a foregone conclusion--so nobody was gasping with surprise when they heard about it.

Once the engagement was announced, my mom and I thought it would be fun if I tried on her wedding gown, especially since I thought that if it suited me, I might decide to wear it for my big day. This grainy snapshot is the only proof I have that I did try it on that winter, and that it actually fit me.  (My 57-year-old middle section is jealous of my 21-year-old waistline, I'll tell you that.)
I love that a picture of my mom wearing the dress is visible in this shot, too.
I'm glad I tried it on; but I didn't say yes to my mother's dress.

I ultimately decided that although Mom's wedding gown was lovely, it was too "Scarlett O'Hara" for me, with its big hoop skirt, and that I might prefer something long-sleeved for a winter wedding.  I didn't try on many dresses before I found "the one" that made me say yes; but I discovered during that short hunting process that I didn't like the way I looked in pure white.  As soon as I put on the antique white (or champagne)-colored gown that I ended up buying, it made me feel like a beautiful bride.  I knew immediately that it was the dress for me, and I never looked back.  It was on a clearance rack for $90, but it made me feel like a million bucks.
Or maybe it was that handsome groom by my side that made me feel like a million bucks.

Yeah, that's it.  That's the ticket.

Our first dance, to...??????
Neither my husband nor I (nor any family member or guest who was there that day) can remember which song we chose for our first dance as husband and wife.  I think it MIGHT have been Chicago's "Just You and Me," because that was the theme song for the junior prom we attended together in high school.  But I really can't remember at all!  I suspect that the band made a suggestion for something that was traditionally chosen by couples, and we didn't care one way or the other because after 7 and 1/2 years of dating, we just wanted to get married--and we both said, "Sure, whatever!"

But I do really wish I could remember what was playing when the photo above was snapped!  Some of my sisters-in-law have tried to rectify this situation for us, so that we can dance to "our" first dance song at family weddings.  The song they chose for us is "Wild Ones" by Flo Rida.  It's so us.  If you don't believe me, check out these rap-tastic lyrics:

Hey I heard you were a wild one

If I took you home
It'd be a home run
Show me how you do

I want to shut down the club
With you
Hey I heard you like the wild ones

I like crazy, foolish, stupid
Party going wild, fist pumping
Music, I might lose it
Blast to the roof, that's how we do'z it


Flo Rida?  I think?
Yikes!!  Let me just say that when it comes to my traditional, conservative husband and myself, that's NOT how we do'z it.  But that's what makes this ridiculous song such a funny choice, and why the humorous Pearl family loves to see us get up and boogie to it when the DJ plays it at wedding receptions.

Here we are, a couple of wild ones cutting a rug to "our" song at son #4's wedding to Braveheart in February of 2014.

Now back to talking about dresses!  I really want to tell you about my mother-in-law's gorgeous satin wedding gown.  It's 60 years old now and has been worn by all four of her daughters and two of her granddaughters (so far).  The niece I wrote about in yesterday's post is the most recent bride to wear it.  But this post is getting long, so I'll save that for tomorrow!

Stay tuned for Part 2 of "Saying Yes to the Dress"--it's going to be so much better than the TLC show with a similar name, I guarantee it.  ;)


  1. oohhh, I can't wait! I love wedding dress talk, and yours was just beautiful! I too got married in winter and chose a long sleeved gown. :)

    1. Didn't you love having a winter wedding? I did! And it's funny, our boys have gotten married in November, December, and February. No summer weddings for us yet!

    2. We loved our winter wedding, and our winter anniversary. We take anniversary trips that cost half of what they would cost at other times of the year!