Well, not a reception, actually. More of an after-party. Well, not really an after-party... more of a barbecue/picnic.
I've written before about the reasons surrounding our decision not to have a large wedding or reception. In short, the reasons for this include:
- Introversion/shyness (personal preference)
- A heavily one-sided guest list (80%+ in-laws)
- Travel (We really didn't want to ask people to spend their hard-earned vacation time in our less-than-interesting locale.)
We were met with support when we announced to our families that we did not plan to have a wedding. However, we were also "warned" that Bf's family would not let this joyous occasion go by uncelebrated. Basically, if we weren't going to do anything, someone else would.
That someone else recently came to me in the form of my wonderful future mom-in-law. She sent me an email that essentially said that she and Bf's dad would like to throw a party in celebration of our marriage, about three days after our ceremony. (We had half-expected a party, but not so soon!) We were both extremely touched by their offer, so of course we agreed!
Bf's parents plan to host this fun and casual get-together on their rural property. They'll set up food (salads, fruit, desserts, etc) in their garage, and they plan to do some barbecuing (possibly a pig-roast). I don't know exactly who they are planning to invite, but future mom-in-law described it to me as a "gathering of family, neighbors and friends". The party will start in the early evening and we hope to be able to have a small fireworks show after dark (small because we have to finish it up before the sheriff shows up!).
So, how does this fit in to our original concerns about a reception? That doesn't matter. This event has graciously been offered to us, and we'll accept it with much humility and appreciation regardless of whether it meshes with our original "plans" or "theme". But the fact is that we're very excited about it! Still, I'll touch on those bullet points I listed above. Cost is a no-brainer. It's not our party: we're not paying for it. (But of course, we plan to offer to contribute (even if it inflates our budget.) As for our shyness, we'll just have to deal with it. In this type of setting, we'll be mingling and hanging out, in casual clothes. There probably won't be toasts, a cake-cutting, a bouquet-toss, a first-dance, or other moments that make humble folks like ourselves jittery with discomfort. As far as travel is concerned, people probably won't need to drive for more than an hour to attend this picnic. This will end up feeling a lot like a Bf-family-reunion, but since it's his family throwing the party, that's to be expected. We hope my parents will be able to make it (they will, if they stay in town a few days before flying home). We'll also invite a few of our local friends.
We're touched and excited that Bf's parents want to do this for us. I feel very lucky to have been welcomed in to their family with open arms; it's like I'm one of them already. I'm looking forward to seeing how it all comes together. And I've been itching to satisfy my crafting-craving, so I'm psyched that I get to help with the invitations too!