Thursday, October 28, 2010

Burning River Wedding: Stressful Family Fomals

Family portraits made me really anxious. Having everyone together, posing for pictures, on time, dressed...all of it just seemed like a recipe for disaster. I timed things very specifically and gave every player instructions for when they were to arrive. The pessimist in me knew something would go awry.

We arrived at the site where we were to take family formals and immediately my MIL told me Josh's grandma would not be joining us for photos. To be honest, this didn't really surprise me, but it didn't help with my nerves. I quickly moved on and took pictures with Josh's wonderful family.

And Josh got some really cute pictures with his sister.

Next we moved on to pictures with my dad and brother/sisters. I struggled with whether to put these pictures up and ultimately decided against it. This particular part of the day was difficult. Here is one really cute picture that I can show.

My adorable little brother/ring bearer. He is, in a word, delightful. 
Just the most pleasant little boy in the world.

My dad, probably trying to be funny, made the whole thing uncomfortable for me. At one point (in the MIDDLE of taking pictures) he said in reference to the photographers, "Where is their tripod?" Trying to be as patient as possible, I calmly said, "They don't work with one, Dad. They don't need it." Could he leave it alone? No. "Wow. Well, they must have really steady hands. Hope they're good."

I'm sure you can imagine my, um, displeasure with this comment. I could go into a really long tirade, but out of respect for my family, I'll refrain. By the end of pictures with my dad, brothers, and sisters, I was SO done. But we still had to take pictures with my mom and grandma.

The look on my face says it all. "I'm f*cking OVER this."
Check out my mom's bling! 
It's a mega-pricey cuff that she borrowed on the cheap from the website Rent the Runway.
Oh, Grandma. Why are you holding my stomach as if I'm with child?

These are, unfortunately, my least favorite pictures of the day. I felt incredibly rushed, irritated, and generally unhappy during the 45 minutes we took these (and I know it shows on my face.) Also, I made a very specific list of photos that we needed to take and I don't feel like we followed it at all. I honestly blame myself for this. My emotions got the best of me and as soon as I felt like we needed to be done, I ended things.

Ted and Rachel asked Josh and I to post for one final picture, and I reluctantly obliged.

I can literally hear myself saying, "Are we done now?"
Also, wtf is going on with my hunchback? 
And with that, we headed inside to prepare for the ceremony.

Burning River Bride Tip: People are probably going to disappoint you on your wedding day. Handle it with as much grace as possible. No one likes a bratty bride. I tried my hardest to put on a damn happy face and soldier through everything that was happening. Although my discomfort was probably sensed by some people, I hope I succeeded in handling it to the best of my ability.

How did your family formals go? If you're still planning, what is your strategy for making them go as smooth as possible?

As always, all photos by the saints of Linczak Photography.


  1. Family is so stressful, I'm sorry that it creeped into your wedding day. If it helps, you still manage to look gorgeous in the pictures!

    My parents are very much the same way with criticism. Seriously - when R and I moved to the city, his parents paid for him to live in apartment-style college housing, but I was on my own with bills and finances, so had to get a roommate and much cheaper apartment. My dad lectured me the whole time about how much better of a decision R made. In front of the FILs. Awkward!

  2. Ditto. I'm glad you were able to blog about it. I didn't have the guts to breech the subject.

  3. My family formal photos are probably my least favorite as well. It was very rushed and we definitely missed out on some really important shots b/c we were rushed. I blame myself mainly but everything was such a whirlwind I wasn't even thinking straight.

  4. We had a photo miscommunication with my grandparents on our wedding day. They didn't realize I wanted pictures with them so they left to hang out with their close friends/relatives right after the ceremony, and we had to run and call them back. They didn't get to hang out with them as much and I felt really bad about it! However, I know when I get the pictures back I will be glad we got them.

    In any case, I know what a tough subject this can be for you, so I am glad you wrote about it. And if I've said it once, I'll say it again--you look frickin' fabulous. :)

  5. I'm sorry you had such a stressful time getting these pics, but they turned out nicely. Your little brother is adorable!

  6. formals were really stressful for us too - we were running out of light, where was everyone, etc :( Sorry yours were tense too!

  7. I know I don't know you much at all, but I honestly cannot see the "I'm SO done" on your face. You look beautiful and you 'faked' it well. :)

  8. We had some people LEAVE. Like, told them to stay for pictures, and they LEFT. I just said OH WELL, screw them! They don't get a copy of the pictures then! These are more important to other people than to the bride, in many cases. Good for you for going with the flow (ish) LOL!

  9. Ugh, I felt the exact way about the formals. When the hell would they be over! We didn't follow my shot list either, but at that point I was so done with it, and just wanted a drink that I didn't care that we didn't get a pic with my husband and my family, or that my sister in law was MIA for all the photos.

    I do think you did a good job of pulling it off, I can't tell you look like you felt at all in your pictures!

  10. Haha, the tripod comment does crack me up!

    Formals are always a mess I feel! Mine were a stressful time as well - I told everyone what time to arrive, and yeah...they didn't get there on I was running around like a crazy person trying to figure out how to get them to the venue on time!

  11. Ughhh, I feel for you! Pictures with David's family were so awkward - His parents were in the middle of the divorce but his mom still wanted a 'family' picture (??? Yea, she's crazy.) and there's tons of drama between his mom and a couple of her sisters. And we definitely forgot a ton of family pictures I wanted (like one with my grandparents, one with us and just my parents and younger brother who are my immediate family, etc.) I wish I would've made a list!

  12. I totally sympathize with you on this. I did NOT make a list of pictures with the family that we needed and I wish I had. While we did get some of the essentials, we only had a total of 17 family photos while there are like 25 or 30 people in our immediate families counting the siblings/spouses and nieces/nephews.

    I didn't get photos with my sister's hubby and her 2 kids because they didn't show up until AFTER we finished the formal photos since the kids were napping. My nephew was one of our ring bearers and he is not in ANY of the wedding party or family photos...only the ceremony shots. So frustrating!

    Your photos did come out great but I totally relate. I don't know why this part of the picture taking process of the day has to always be so unpleasant.

  13. just came across your blog :) love it! what fabulous photos you have! you're gorgeous girl!

  14. OMG your photos are stunning!!! you looked so amazing on your wedding day!! :)

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