If you’ve followed me for a while you’ll know that this time last year I wrote a blog about my birthday/ why your wedding is (in many ways) like a birthday. If you’ve followed me for a while I’m about to recycle a lot of what I wrote in that one – to save you some time, things that are different are a) Veuve Cliquot is amazing and so totally worth it! b) this year’s birthday cake is a custard sponge with creme patisserie and chocolate ganache. c) I like A&P Shows d) there’s lots more pretty pictures.
Last Thursday was my 35th birthday. Maybe one day I’ll stop telling people so happily what the number is, but I doubt it, to me a birthday is a celebration I’ve survived another year, rather than a commiseration that I’m another year older.
In the morning after I insisted on hot chocolate and eggs on toast in bed (and got a nice surprise of fresh peaches off our tree), we headed out to the Central Otago A&P Show.
I don’t care if you think A&P Shows are uncool, I love them! The horses, the pipe bands, the hot dogs and coffee van and (hope against hope) the Pastie caravan, the shows offs in the vegetable and baking shed (I get to say that because whenever I get the chance I’m one of those show offs), the rides our biggest little girl just adores.
Then I got my cake ready, as I mentioned a three layered custard sponge sandwiched with homemade creme patisserie topped with thick chocolate ganache (I’ve been daydreaming about and trialling this cake for weeks)
Cracked a bottle of my new absolute favourite Veuve Cliquot to share with my friends while we ate drank and gossiped.
And that’s it, that is my idea of an ideal birthday. It’s not for everybody, and that’s cool, but right now, at this point in my life it’s perfect for me. Birthdays aren’t about everybody doing all the same thing – some people like paintball (I can’t think of anything worse), some people like to have a big fully catered birthday bash every year (I’m too lazy to bother on my own behalf too often)… and weddings don’t need to be about everybody doing all the same things either.
Last year I married Scott and Jess, an Australian couple who eloped in Queenstown.
We drove up the Remarkables and they tied the knot amongst swaying Central Otago grass. Then they went back to their accommodation for the most amazing multi course dinner, followed by a spectacular twilight photo shoot.
In January I married Amy and Cam at the Shotover Canyon Swing in front of their closest family and friends… then followed by many of those family and friends they strapped in and took a 60m freefall plunge followed by a 200m swing, before heading down to the shores of Lake Wakatipu for bubbly and Fergbaker pies.
A few years ago I married Bex and Guy in Guy’s Mum’s garden surrounded by their closest Mummies, Vampires, Zombies and Werewolves on Halloween.
It’s so easy to get wrapped up in ‘what you’re supposed to do at a wedding’ when you get engaged and start planning your wedding. But just humour me, take a step back and ask yourselves… if we were planning a birthday for one of us, a special anniversary, mid winter Christmas…. What might it look like? And I don’t mean you should play paintball for your wedding (unless you want to, in which case, go for it!) But, are you celebrating with lots of people/ with a few very special people/ just the two of you? Is the food the main event? What time of day is it? How dressed up are you? Is it a big event, or more laidback?
You can get married in a spectacularly enormous wedding dress…. Or in your jeans. You can move the whole shebang to 9am, feed your guests bacon and eggs and coffee and spend the afternoon and evening taking photos and relaxing in your luxurious hotel room… or you can get married at 8pm on a clear winter’s night under the stars of the big Central Otago sky. You can have an enormous wedding and serve Veuve Cliquot at the head table… or you can runaway and spend some of the savings on Vintage Krug.
When you plan your next birthday, make it about you. When you plan your wedding, do what makes you both happy.
If you’re after a fun young celebrant anywhere in Central Otago or beyond and you want to have a chat (over coffee… or a cheeky wine!) get in touch, we’ll make a date, whether in person or via Skype. I’m up for a challenge, so hit me with your ideas and we’ll go from there.