Yes, our home is a flurry of activity as we prepare for another child to be married – this time, a daughter. Being a traditional family, we are putting on the event, and with great joy! We are preparing to release our daughter, in a sense, giving the responsibility of protection and provision to her beloved.
So what advice would I give to a family with lots of children, especially several daughters? Since some have asked, I would say to begin the conversation now, between husband and wife, regarding courtship (what is it?), budget, expectations and more. Some have lumped dating and courtship together. But the big difference is that a man and a woman in a courtship are heading towards marriage. Dating, however, seems to imply a lack of commitment. Yes, some who “date around” end up marrying that one, but dating around can leave great wounds.
Why talk about the budget when your children are young or teens? Because this is a big issue. We know folks who have gone into debt to put on their child’s wedding. We know folks who spent $40,000 on the wedding only to be divorced a couple years later. A wedding is a wonderful celebration, but it can be lovely and memorable even on a modest budget. So, set a budget now, while you are thinking clearly, and when the time comes, make every effort to stick to it. Pray, be creative, do some research.
In our case, our daughter wanted lots of guests, 100’s in fact. So, the sit down dinner option was nixed. But we will have delicious food for the guests: fruits, vegeys, crackers, cheeses, shrimp, desserts, hors de voures, etc. The setting is our home church for the ceremony and reception. Since children are very important to the bride to be the wedding party includes 2 ring bearers and 4 flower girls, in addition to 7 bridesmaids and 7 groomsmen, ushers, musicians, and 2 ministers presiding.
This is also a time to let go……….to realize that the couple is establishing a new home. It’s time to say, “I’ve raised you and love you and will continue to love you. But if you want advice from now on, you will need to come to me and ask.” That can be a very hard thing to grasp for a parent, especially a controlling parent. But do you really want to treat your 20 something child like he/she still has a diaper on? Cut the apron strings, in fact, start to loosen them little by little as the years roll on from ages, let’s say 1 , until the late teens.
Rejoice with us at this time!!