As I wrote last Thursday, I was off to my cousin's wedding in Cleveland. It was a beautiful simcha (celebration). My favorite part (aside from the getting-married-thing) was all of my cousins' children...they are gorgeous and were dressed so adorably! I couldn't stop taking pictures. Full disclosure: My dad and I were sharing his new cool camera, so about half the pictures were taken by me and half by him. I'm quite sure that one or two of these below are from his batch!
Getting ready before the wedding, my dad helping David tie his tie. (Only my parents and I went, and I brought my oldest. It was too much for my little ones!)
Some of the little girls (nieces of the bride, my cousins' kids) in their beautiful dresses, taking pictures before the wedding. You could see how much they love their aunt, and the glow in their eyes as they envisioned themselves as a bride someday. They also loved their beautiful twirly dresses! (There are even more gorgeous shots, but I left out all the faces of the kids for obvious reasons.)
The bride with our grandmother.
Before the wedding ceremony, there is a period called "Kabbalat Panim" -- literally "welcoming faces," when the bride sits on a throne-like chair surrounded by her mother, mother-in-law, grandmothers, and sisters, and she is greeted and kissed by all the women present. (During this time, the men are involved in what's known as the Groom's Tisch, or Table, where the groom is teased by his friends as he tries to give a scholarly lecture. At the Tisch, the Ketubah, the Marriage Contract, is also signed.) There's more about how a Jewish wedding works in this post by me and at MyJewishLearning.com. These are some of the little girls sitting at their aunt's feet during this time.
My son, David, with my grandmother, during Kabbalat Panim. Doesn't he look handsome in his suit!?
During the ceremony, the bride and groom under the chuppah.
It is a mitzvah, a commandment, to dance with bride and groom. In Orthodox custom, men and women dance separately, and each woman there vies for her chance to dance with the celebrating bride. The dancing goes on and on, and the bride is often exhausted! When she can't dance any more, they seat her on a chair in the midst of all the dancers and her friends and relatives entertain her and dance for her. This is the bride dancing with her newest sister-in-law, my cousin's wife, who was married just in April before Passover.
A funny tradition as part of the mitzvah of "entertaining the bride and groom", within my cousins' circle at least, there is always this hilarious moment of the jump-rope! I don't know of any particular significance, but I always laugh to see these elaborately dressed brides and sisters jumping rope! This is the bride and one of her older sisters. They did a great job, I think they jumped 2 or three times before hitting the rope!
My favorite shot of the trip, though, is this one that my dad took in Corky and Lenny's Deli before the wedding, of David and me. Those of you who know me IRL or have seen my pictures know that I have curly hair...but my friend Andi straightened it for me just for the wedding! (I'm now hooked, btw, I am on a hunt to buy myself a hair straightener.)
See many other great shots (and probably shorter posts!) at Best Shot Monday...