The story goes something like this...

The Engagement

Sometime in mid-late 2002 Chad decided he was going to propose. He spoke to Heidi, and the planning began. After Ray and Nicky's wedding, where I was handed the bouquet and garter on a silver platter, Chad told the rest of the group of people he was going to need in order to pull this off...including Ray and Nicky who were terribly amused.

Planning had already begun for my 30th birthday party. We (me included) had decided to throw a middle eastern feast. We planned to decorate the back porch, throw down rugs and pillows, and have a blast. I thought I knew all the plans, boy was I wrong!

Video of the of the engagement!

The party was a great success, Heidi danced, the food was magnificent, there were somewhere in the area of 25 people there, including my entire immediate family. After dinner was eaten, Heidi danced her second dance, and folks dissapeared inside to get the cake. I had asked for a Boston Creme cake many months before, and Heidi placed a beautiful one in front of me as everyone sang. When the song was over Chad, who was kneeling down on the pillow next to me sword in hand, quieted everybody down and said...

"Deirdre and I were, how to put this politely, lying in bed a few days ago when she hit me with a statement, that after I thought about it, wasn't true. The statement she hit me with was 'You've given me everything I ever asked for', that's not true, there's one thing I haven't given startes something like this..."
At which point he revealed a second cake which said Will you be mine..."and ends something like this..." and revealed a third cake which said Chad loves Deirdre with a beautiful gold ring covered with knotwork in place of the 'o'.

I, at this point, pretty much lost the power of speech. I took the ring from the cake, licked the chocolate off of it, put it on my finger and began to kiss and hug Chad. I heard a voice from the crowd saying "An answer would be nice", so managed to finish the kiss, sit back and say "Yes". To which someone said "but where's the answer cake?!?" Heidi then unsheathed Chad's sword, laid it on the ground at our feet and asked "Will you swear?". My response of "Hell yeah!" was echoed by Chad. We got up, took hands, and jumped the sword. I then dissapeard inside, and returned with a cookie upon which I had written "Yes". I fed Chad the cookie and everyone was satisfied. It was a beautiful night, and a memorable birthday even without the bonus prize at the end.

The Wedding

are pictures of the entire cruise, wedding, and reception!

Instead of a traditional church wedding, as both Chad and I had had one before, we decided to take a Carnival cruise. We planned to cruise for four days, then have the ceremony on Friday, May 13th. We were to be married on the Natural Bridge in Aruba.

Due to unforseen circumstances the ship had to change course on Thursday night, and we were not to make it to Aruba. Which turned out to be a good thing, because despite the beautiful weather at sea, Aruba was being hit by freak severe storms (so much so that most of the power and phones were down). We found all this out on Friday morning as the girls were getting their hair done, and the boys were getting ready for their shore excursion. Instead, the ship was heading to St. Maarten, but wouldn't arrive there until Saturday.

With some negotiations by Ray, the ships crew arranged for us to have a room on board to have the ceremony. They decorated it with white table cloths and columns, and arranged for a beautiful wedding cake for us. Ray had also mentioned that in the original plan the girls were to arrive on horseback to the ceremony. Well, no one in the crew knew how to make a towel horse - but they could make towel elephants, so the room was also decorated with towel elephants! To top it all off, there was a crewman there to make sure everything ran smoothly, and to pour the champagne. It was a beautiful ceremony, and with some editing we might even have a tape of it (the sun was behind us so everyone is white!) We spent the rest of that afternoon celebrating, and despite some unfortunate mixing of Jack Daniels and champagne, had a beautiful evening. The next day dawned bright and sunny, and we got to wander the streets of St. Maarten.

When we returned from the cruise, we had a reception in San Jose that everyone was invited too. We got to see both our families, and a bunch of friends and relatives. Daniel provided the meal, which was of course fantastic! We decorated our section of Starbird park with tropical fish and streamers, and played a bunch of reggae and steel drum music.

Thank you to everyone who's wished us well!

Oh by the way, for those of you who insisted that we had to have a wedding registry, we have done as you commanded. Check it out...but please do realize, we don't expect wedding presents - this is a second for both of us! But, if you feel you must, have fun, we registered for some pretty varied stuff :-)

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