Wedding drama stories are a dime a dozen, but not this one. And to be honest, I’m surprised.
I’m not totally sure why the process has been so joyful as I was certain it would be stressful but, there may be something in this story that will shed some light.
When I met Bill, his two boys were in their 20’s and mine were in their teens. Ten years later, the first of our four boys is getting married! Actually, it’s the first of any of the cousins and step-cousins in each of our families so we are going into this with zero role modeling.
But that’s ok because we are a pretty unconventional group. Not only are we a blended family of 10 years, one of us divorced, the other widowed, our soon-to-be daughter-in-law is first generation American…we hark from different backgrounds and religions. Bill’s family is Christian, Bill and I are Jewish, and surprisingly there’s really no issues at all around any of this. You see, this is truly a “made in America” wedding – a veritable melting pot of cultures bound together by a couple that fell in love.
The step-brothers wouldn’t miss this wedding for the world despite insane pre-Thanksgiving schedules. They love the connection to family, and we are thrilled everyone will be there. We are well aware there could have been a lot of drama, it could have been complicated.
We had often talked about which boy would get married first and what that day would be like. How would the family come together, what does it mean to be the step mom on such an intimate day when both birth parents are present? How would we handle the stress, endless details, planning, and inevitable exhaustion of a wedding?
Like all anxiety – it’s the anticipation that is way worse than the reality. I am thrilled to report that our experience, thus far, has been sans drama, it has created an opportunity to connect with our kids around a celebration about them.
The wedding is tomorrow, and the biggest drama thus far is it falls on Wednesday, the day before Thanksgiving….and of course there’s a bit of drama around the cake.
My husband and I were talking about this as I watched him baking the wedding cake. Yup, he’s baking his boys’ and daughter-in-law’s wedding cake: a seven layer cake and it’s no small task.
Let me start by saying Bill is not new to cake baking. In fact, he has every one of Dorie Greenspan’s cookbooks and has selected her “perfect party cake;” a white lemon cake with a raspberry middle and a butter cream frosting. That is just the 12 inch base layer of the cake (3 layers) . The White Out Chocolate Cake for the fourth and fifth layers and a chocolate ganache for the crowning sixth and seven layers.
Although he has never baked this particular recipe before, he is undaunted.
Apologies for bragging but anyone who has tasted my husband’s cakes considers him to be a master baker. We are often invited to birthday parties, I believe, because he brings the cake.
Sunday was not originally a wedding cake baking day. In fact Bill didn’t decide to take on this monumental task until a few hours before but this is how the wedding has morphed.
It evolved organically – layer by layer. At first the wedding was going to be very very small – just a justice of the peace and a few witnesses. Over a dinner it evolved, bride and groom bravely opening their ceremony and layering in more family. A casual dress would give way to a floor length wedding dress, The Justice of the Peace would give way to a church. Layer by layer. The final grand tier was set in place and the celebration had morphed into a cozy family gathering of 25 from church to private room at a delicious local Italian restaurant.
So it was after a fitful sleep that Bill confessed Sunday morning that he was working through Dorie Greenspan’s recipes and he couldn’t decide which one to make. He woke up in a sweat. At 9 am he decided he would buy the cake.
By 10 am we had been turned down by two of our favorite bakeries. They were flat out with Thanksgiving week orders.
By 11 am Bill was at Sur La Table buying 12 inch, 9 inch and 6 inch diameter pans.
Hands on and DIY…layer by layer.
Our boy and his beautiful bride have been able to create their small and inclusive wedding with love because they possess the ingredients that are even sweeter and than Bill’s cake.
If you are inspired to bake a wedding cake after reading this check out this 3 part video.
How to make a 3-layer wedding cake Part 1
How to stack a 3-layer wedding cake Part 2
How to bake a wedding cake Part 3
She shows us how to decorate it.