Christmas! It doesn't seem as if a whole year could have passed since
you two moved away. As you know, it's been a year for weddings here in
Orchard Hill, starting with Riley and Gracie's Valentine's Day wedding
and stretching out through the year.
All of Orchard Hill
Community Church's engaged couples have tied the knot. The last
wedding was yesterday. Pastor Isaac finally got to have his own
wedding, after performing 11 ceremonies in one year, starting with your
double weddings, ladies. I hope married life continues to treat you
In fact, I've been to so many weddings lately, I feel I've
become something of an expert on them. It's amazing how beautiful they
all were and yet how different. Riley and Gracie's wedding was very
traditional and of course Riley's relatives filled the church. One of
those relatives - I don't remember exactly how they're related; shirt
tail for sure - was Henry Day. Now Pansy, I know you remember that
Henry and I were sweethearts once upon a time - a long, long time ago.
Don't go getting any ideas. You may have been brave enough to try
matrimony a second time, but not me.
We did have a cup of
punch and a nice visit though. It would be rude to refuse to talk to
him after all these years even though I remember that the end of our
romance was all his fault. He still looks good - as good as someone
our age can look that is. He still has that same smile but his hair
has gone gray. Not everyone is fortunate enough to keep their natural
hair color as long as I have. Henry told me he finally decided
it was time to retire. You'll remember that he was an architect down
in Chicago. He's moved back to Orchard Hill to be close to some of his
The next couple down the aisle was Shaun and Patience
Thiesen, although that was a renewal of vows rather than a proper
wedding. They wanted to have the ceremony before Patience had the baby
and even though she was seven months pregnant, the bride looked
radiant. Their wedding wasn't fancy, but it sure was nice.
turned up at that wedding, too. I guess he was friends with Shaun's
grandfather or something like that. This time he asked me to dance,
but I said 'no.' I'm too old for that foolishness.
April, Angel and Jeff exchanged their vows. It was supposed to be an
outdoor wedding, but at the last minute it was moved inside. You would
think that those two would have more sense than to plan an outdoor
wedding in April in Wisconsin. It snowed on their wedding day and
Angel said the snow was beautiful so she was happy anyway. The rest of
us were pretty sick of the white stuff but we didn't say anything.
course Henry had to show up there as well. It seems that Jeff's
parents are big in the real estate market and Henry had worked with
them before. This time he succeeded in getting me to dance, but only
because he pestered me so much. I only danced with him so he'd leave
Patience had a beautiful baby girl in May. They named her
Constance. Shaun is the most attentive new father I've ever seen. Not
like my Carl. He had many good qualities, but I don't think he ever
changed a diaper in his life. Of course things were different then.
and Faith got hitched in June, after school was out of course.
Everyone was happy to see our elementary school principal and secretary
together at last. Since it was a second wedding for both of them, they
kept it small and informal. The wedding was held in Andrew's back yard
and the weather cooperated for them.
Wouldn't you know it, that
Henry Day showed up again. I never did figure out what his connection
was there. There was no dancing at the reception, so he couldn't
pester me about that anyway. But he did have the nerve to sit next to
me for the ceremony. Can you imagine? The gossips had a field day
with that one. You know how they are. I was determined that I
wouldn't talk to Henry anymore, not even at coffee hour after church.
and Sarah got married in July. David's niece, Charity was adorable as
their flower girl. Sarah plans to adopt her as soon as possible.
Their wedding was a bit big and fancy for my taste. I don't think
Sarah would have planned it that way, but David is determined to spoil
her at every opportunity. I suppose he wants to make up for her sad
childhood and I can't think poorly of him for that. For once Henry was
absent. I was surprised after he'd managed to wrangle invitations to
all the other celebrations. It sure was nice not to have him there
talking my ear off. I didn't miss him at all.
The summer ended
with Hope and Oliver's wedding in August. I was surprised at how well
it went. You know how Joseph feels about Oliver marrying his little
sister. Oliver and Hope love to be outdoors so it was no surprise when
they chose to have the ceremony at the park. Henry was there but he
didn't enjoy himself. He has hay fever so the location didn't agree
with him. I took pity on the poor man and gave him a ride home. He'd
walked to the park, but I really didn't think he'd make it back. I
went in with him and made him some tea. You'd better not be smiling
Pansy. It was nothing. Any Christian woman would have done the same.
By this time I was starting to get sick of wedding cake, but
one can't refuse to attend these types of events. It would seem mean
spirited. So I went to Cal and Susan's wedding, too. Being with Cal
sure has sweetened Susan up. I was a little nervous about Henry
because there were a lot of flowers at the wedding. You know Cal was a
landscaper before he moved back and started that nursery on his
father's place. Anyway, I let him sit by me so I could keep an eye on
him. Luckily, he didn't seem to be allergic to anything. We danced at
the reception until my feet were sore. It turns out I'm not too old
for dancing after all.
In October it was Joseph and Harmony's
turn to take a trip down the aisle. I think the carpet's getting a bit
threadbare there. But as you would expect with Harmony, everything was
beautifully and tastefully done. She made her own wedding dress, you
know, even though she could afford to buy any dress she wanted. But I
have to admit, no fancy designer could have done a better job. It was
good to see Joseph so happy. He spent such a long time mourning for
his first wife. His kids seem pleased as punch to have Harmony as a
step mama and even the terrible trio behaved.
Henry picked me up
and took me to the wedding this time. It would have been silly to take
two cars. Of course the gossips see it differently, but there's no
Ian and Lily got married in November. Believe it
or not, they brought their pets to the ceremony - her cat and his dog.
I'm glad Ian decided not to bring the guinea pigs. It was a regular
circus with just the other two. Of course the pets managed to get away
from the people holding their leashes. Let's just say we skipped the
cake. Because it was all over the floor. Luckily Henry isn't allergic
Finally it's December and the end of the
marriage-go-round. I was so happy for Pastor Isaac. He deserved his
own wedding and a bride as beautiful as Joy after doing weddings for
everyone else all year. I didn't think Joy's shyness would allow her
to have a big wedding but the sanctuary was full. Isaac walked her
down the aisle himself since she didn't have anyone to give her away
and I don't think she felt as anxious that way. She's really made
great strides in conquering her fears this last year.
to give you more details, but Henry will be here soon. We're going out
to dinner tonight and then dancing at the community center. All right,
I'll admit it. Sometimes Cupid takes aim at the most unexpected
Happy New Year!
Cora Applebaum (Don't be surprised if I sign my letter Cora Day next year)