Does a Wedding Make a Marriage?

With the release of our second boxed set, Weddings on Main Street, I’ve thought a lot about weddings. In my story, What a Cowgirl Wants, Mandy Wagner has always dreamed of a fairy tale wedding. Unfortunately, she’s operating on a pauper’s budget.


When my oldest son got married, they went all out. Big wedding with a big budget, held on an outdoor patio at the Shutters Hotel in Santa Monica overlooking the Pacific ocean. It was beautiful. The wedding and reception cost more than I made that year.

When I got married many years ago, I was wearing blue jeans and sneakers. Still wearing our coats, we got married in an empty book room at the county courthouse. The woman who officiated couldn’t even pronounce matrimony. There was no reception, no pictures, no wedding showers, no fanfare whatsoever. I didn’t even have a bouquet. Forty-one years later, we’re still married. Do I regret not having a wedding? Yes, every day.

I regret denying my father the chance to walk his only child down the aisle.  I regret denying my mother the chance to help plan a wedding. I regret not having any pictures to look at. I don’t, however, regret not putting my parents in debt to finance a wedding. And in the overall scheme of things, we’re still just as married as we would be if we’d gotten married in a church.

My youngest son is getting married October 2015. Once again, I get to live vicariously through my kids, though this son is much more frugal than his brother and I know he won’t go into debt to finance it. Like Mandy and Blake, he and his fiancee will have a beautiful wedding that they plan themselves, and they’ll do most of the work. Even though the wedding is more than a year away, I’m already excited to hear their plans.

What was your wedding experience? Big wedding? Eloped? A small ceremony on a budget? Tell us your wedding story.


About Tori Scott

Author, former Golden Heart finalist, published by Red Sage, in Woman's World, and selected news media. I live near Dallas Texas and write sexy romantic comedy, contemporary small-town romance, and romantic suspense.
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6 Responses to Does a Wedding Make a Marriage?

  1. E. Ayers says:

    I recently blogged about my marriage on my blog and how our tiny sneak-off-and-get-married grew to a little larger than what we had wanted. But my husband was a devout Catholic and would never have considered himself truly married if we had married outside of the Church. This autumn would have marked our forty-fourth anniversary. There are a few photos of us…someplace. Weddings do not make a marriage. That is made one day at a time with love and commitment.


  2. susanrhughes says:

    We had a church wedding and a dinner-and-dance reception with about 60 guests. During the dancing, the TV in the lounge outside the reception hall reported that Princess Diana had been injured in a car accident, and guests began ducking out to watch. Later in the evening we heard she’d died. We flew to London the next day for our honeymoon. The atmosphere in England was one of shock and sadness. There were piles of flowers outside Buckingham Palace, and we were lucky to be able to tour Westminster Abbey the day before it closed for the funeral.


  3. leighmorgan1 says:

    Congratulations on your son’s engagement, Tori! I’m not sure weddings ever match the expectations the participants have of the day, but each is wonderful in it’s own way. Each is a moment, a day, that turns into a life spent together. The joy of the celebration, no matter how big or how small is what makes a wedding special.


  4. Joan Reeves says:

    After putting on 4 weddings for our respective children, I can tell you they’re as much fun as they are expensive. By contrast, Larry and I had a “no frills” wedding. No pictures, no bridal gown, no attendants, no flowers, etc. We didn’t have 2 cents to rub together either. We had planned to marry at the courthouse, but the judge was embroiled in a trial. We called around and a Baptist minister near us was so warm and gracious. He declared that he’d be proud to officiate. We went over to the church, and he conducted a ceremony that was eloquent and moving. That was 36 1/2 years ago. We are living our “happily ever after” every day. Sometimes, I think couples focus too much on the wedding and not enough on the marriage.


  5. Mona Risk says:

    I had a job interview and test in the morning for my first job as a pharmaceutical chemist, then rushed at 2pm to the hairdresser who was getting frantic waiting for the bride. It was a small church wedding with the family, extended family and the scouts in my husband group. They made a honor row for us in the front yard of the church. After that a 25 person party at my grandfather with sandwiches and a big cake that was a wedding gift from a guest. My dad said now I was allowed to smoke. He lit a cigarette for me. I enjoyed it but never smoked again. We are still married and in love–knock on wood. By contrast my two kids had each a lavish wedding.


  6. Carol says:

    Interesting wedding story, Tori. Love doesn’t need a huge wedding. You and your hubby proved only true love lasts. My wedding was small and we’ve been married forty-eight years. I’m loving Weddings on Main Street!


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