Putting the "Big" in Big Fun: Part I

I am the sole creator of the nickname BIG FUN, aka the Kelly Borchers/Tim Norris wedding that just took place this weekend. September 20, 2008 will go down as BIG FUN: The Night to Remember.

Nick and I left Cleveland Wednesday night after work and didn’t arrive until after midnight. Although tired from the long drive, we still couldn’t help but make comments. “Why is the road closed?”

“Looks like they’re doing road construction.”

Mhm, that doesn’t sound like a good start for a wedding weekend with lots of out of towners.

As the car bumped along and we passed my favorite street – marveling, once again, at Borchers Road – we turned to find most of the Russian roads ripped up along one side and enormous bulldozers and machinery scattered rather obviously around town.

First thought: Ouch. That doesn’t make a pretty wedding picture. I bet Ron and Kay are pissed. Don’t the construction people know it’s Big Fun weekend?

Wednesday Night
Hugs all around as we enter the house and Russia’s long lost one-time seminarian son has returned. It’s always nice to see Nick light up when we enter Raider-ville. No matter how tired he is in the car, once he walks through the garage that connects to the kitchen, he’s completely reenergized to be near his family.

So, the first night, Kelly, the lovely bride to be, Nick, Ron, Kay and I just talk about the impending nuptuals and all the craziness that goes on the few days prior to the wedding. The next day we would be decorating St. Remy Hall, home of Big Fun dinner and dancing (commonly known as a reception). We hit the hay and I wondered what exactly the Borchers house would look like under such a big event. The questions were endless:

Would Kelly survive all the questions? (It’s a researched fact that brides answer approximately 1,000,000 -yes one million – questions in the timeframe of the engagement.)

Is there enough Crown Royal?

Will the bulldozers get out of the way?

Should I refrigerate the Red Bull now or Friday night?

Will it really be 80 degrees on Saturday?

The next morning, I went for a long run around town. My new goal is to run a road race before I turn 30 (ahem, 2.27.09) and the lovely slightly manure-ed air of the countryside provided a nice backdrop to my jog. When I returned, I found Kay and Kelly – already having conquered the florist appointment – ready to head up to the hall. I quickly changed and followed suit, running two minutes behind.

I walked two feet into the hall, hoping I wasn’t too late and found about 20 excited family members and friends generously volunteering to help decorate the tables. Nick spotted me and whispered into my ear, “Totally predictable, Kelly and Aunt Jan are already crying. Watch out…”

A quick laugh was needed as we all went to work with ribbon, linens, dishware, caramel popcorn (par-tay favors!) and votive candles. The highlight was definitely flicking up the wick of over a couple hundred votive candles with a tack. Ahhh, the manual labor of wedding prep. As we folded the napkins, i laughed and caught up with friends and family. It NEVER ceases to amaze me how generous Nick’s family and friends are with their time and resources. All these folks here to set up chairs, tables, cover them, plan routes, hang clothes, wipe something until it shines – for free – is truly remarkable. Nick often says, “Yep, that’s Russia.”

As the hours pass and more questions surface, I begin having memories (traumatic ones) of my own wedding planning and remember the anxiety of wondering whether the food will satisfy everyone, if the plates look right, if the flowers are the right color. Weddings are unbelievably stressful, but in Borchers-style, they handled it unbelievably smoothly. Ron has lists, Kay has tears, Kelly is direct, Nick is sweating, Jay is still at work, Keith is leaving voicemail messages that he’s on his way, and I am smiling with candle wax debris on my face.

The hall is done by 3pm-ish. Not bad.