Wednesday, December 21, 2016

A Lighthouse Wedding

Tybee Island Light Station (c)

Bob & I had retired to the coast of Georgia and were living on Tybee Island, 18 miles East of Savannah, when our daughter from St. Louis decided to get married.  We'd always figured she'd want a large wedding, but after her first visit to Tybee, she and her fiancee fell in love with the island and its lighthouse Known as the Tybee Island Light Station, it is located next to the mouth of the Savannah River.  

Kim & Paul liked to come visit for Christmas, so our second Christmas on the island they decided to combine it with a wedding.

Lightkeepers Cottage (c)
It was a very simple ceremony, held in the lightkeepers cottage, one of several buildings which surround the lighthouse.  

A Savannah judge who lived on Tybee performed the ceremony that was  attended by just her parents, 3 other members of our family, and 3 friends.  A 'wedding party' of ten, counting the bride & groom.

The Wedding Party


  • Us - the parents of the bride.
  • Our son & daughter-in-law, who were living in Gainseville, FL and my mother who lived close to them in Ocala, FL.  They all drove up together to Tybee Island for the wedding. 
  • Our daughter's best friend/college roommate flew down from Illinois to be her maid of honor.
  • Our neighbors, who had previously met Kim & Paul, joined us in watching the ceremony. 

The Wedding Party (c)

Kim brought her wedding dress with her from St. Louis and Paul rented his tuxedo in Savannah.  I made the local arrangements, rented the building at the lighthouse, arranged for the Judge to perform the ceremony, and ordered the wedding cake with a theme that fit the fact that they are both artists.  All of this was accomplished in three weeks, as Kim didn't call with her wedding idea until almost Thanksgiving and the wedding was December 23rd!

Wedding Music

Prior to the ceremony, our son, Greg (Kim's brother) & his wife sang (Everything I Do) I Do it for You, by Bryan Adams, at the request of the couple. It is a favorite song of theirs from the movie Robin Hood (Prince of Thieves), and the lyrics are special to them. 

The wedding music was pre-recorded and played on a tape player.  We decorated a table in the lighthouse cottage with flowers and candles as our only decorations and I took all the wedding photos. The whole ceremony, held two days before Christmas, was simple, but lovely. 

Weather Hitch

Stormy Beach Weather (Pixabay)

The only 'hitch' we experienced was the weather that late December day. The Georgia coastal area was having a Nor'easter complete with cold temperatures, high wind and heavy rain.  But we all laughed it off, because problems with severe weather have been so frequent in our family over the years for any event or trip that we've all taken to calling it "The Austin Weather Curse" and are not surprised when it happens.  It's pretty much a 'given' that it WILL happen. It's a good thing we decided on the Lighthouse Wedding instead of a 'beach' wedding!

An Unusual Wedding Cake

After the wedding, we all went over to a local restaurant on the beach for a seafood dinner.

Because there were only 10 of us in the wedding party, a large, standard wedding cake was not needed, or wanted.  Simple was the password of the occasion, so the cake had to fit with this theme.  I ordered it from a local bakery and arranged to have it placed on a small table near our reserved dining table at the restaurant for the traditional 'cake-cutting' ceremony.

Wedding Cake (c)

Instead of a multilayer wedding cake, we had a one-layer sheet cake.  Instead of having the bride & groom sitting on top, the cake was decorated with an artist's palette and brush, along with the names of the bride & groom and their wedding date.

Why this unusual decoration, you wonder?  Both my daughter and my son-in-law are Artists!

Congratulations, Mr. & Mrs.!

Mr. & Mrs.(c)

Afterwards, the wedding couple left for their wedding night in the bridal suite at a hotel on the beach while the rest of us returned to our island home.

Everyone stayed on with us through Christmas two days later. It was a marvelous and memorable Christmas-on-the Island and Lighthouse Wedding!

Kim & Paul  & Their Lighthouse Wedding (c)

To my knowledge, we were one of the first people to hold a wedding at the Tybee Island Lighthouse in 1994.  I think we may have started something, because today it is a regular event.

Kim & Paul's wedding was small, by choice, and very simple, but charming. If we had decided on a large wedding, we could have sent wedding invitations that fit the location.

Monday, December 12, 2016

Reflections of the Sea Ornaments

Christmas Tree Ornaments from the Seashore

From the Gulf Coast of Florida to the Central Coast of California to the Atlantic Ocean off the coast of Georgia, we've celebrated Christmas near the 'Sea' over many a year. As a result, our Christmas Ornaments have gradually gravitated toward items that reflect and remind us of the seashore. We have seagulls and shells, lighthouses and ships, and a 'colorful' crab. Here I share some of my favorite 'Reflections of the Sea' ornaments that I use on my Christmas Tree each year.

Throughout this page I've included a variety of seashell holiday ornaments and other related ornaments that reflect life at the seashore. Perhaps there is one or two that would fit in with your Christmas Tree ornament collection, whether you live near the seashore or just love 'all things about the Sea'.

*All pictures on this page are personal photos by Wednesday-Elf, unless otherwise noted.

The Tybee Island (GA) Lighthouse and Our Lighthouse Ornaments


Tybee Island Lighthouse and Lighthouse Ornaments

Living Near a Lighthouse on Tybee Island...

Lighthouses have long fascinated people, and visitors to Lighthouse locations number in the thousands every year. We were lucky enough to spend 13 years living on Tybee Island, Georgia and the Tybee Lighthouse became a favorite of ours.

Naturally, collecting lighthouse ornaments to add to our "Sea" ornament collection was a 'given', especially after our daughter was married at the Tybee Lighthouse two days before Christmas in 1994!

Cute Crab Ornaments on the Christmas Tree...


One of our favorite seashore memories of Tybee Island, Georgia was eating at a restaurant named "The Crab Shack" (where the elite eat in their bare feet).   

To remind us of those fun times, and the Atlantic Ocean we loved around the island, we acquired this fun 'Crab' ornament.

Blue Crab Ornament


This "Blue Crab" Ornament will make a unique addition to your sea-theme Christmas tree

If your favorite 'coastal' area is the Chesapeake Bay at the Atlantic Ocean, you are probably a big fan of the Maryland Blue Crab (as my son is). This 'Blue Crab' ornament will be a fun reminder of the delicious blue crabs you've enjoyed in the past.

If you are interested in learning more about the Blue Crab, this Blue Crab Informational Site is an interesting read. It even has recipes for your enjoyment.

Clam Shell with Pearl


Then we added a pretty little clam shell with a pearl inside.

We See Seashells by the Seashore

Walking on the beach and finding 'shells' is a favorite pastime of anyone who lives near the ocean, or visits on vacation. Over the years we collected quite a few shells on the beach, and seashell Christmas ornaments for our Tree and home decorations. These two are of a lacy-looking gold color and they look lovely hanging on the Christmas tree.

Seashells, Starfish & Beach Glass Ornament

This colorful collection of seashells and other beach life makes a beautiful ornament for your ocean-themed Christmas tree.

It's also a lovely addition to a beach house decor.

Seagulls along the Shore - My very favorite ornament

Seagulls and the seashore go together, so naturally we had to have a "Seagull" ornament for our "Reflections of the Sea" theme.

Seagulls also soar around fishing vessels and 'ships at sea', a constant reminder of the sea.

Continue Your Nautical Theme

Down to the Sea in Ships...

Cruise Ship Ornaments
Ship themed ornaments are a fun reminder of the Sea, and a cruise ship ornament is perfect to remember a past cruise or look forward to one. On a cold winter day, the thought of a cruise to a tropical island warms you right up!

Bring the 'Seashore' to your Home for Christmas

Since we lived near the seashore for so many years, our Christmas Cards were often photos of our children with the ocean in the background. Below is one of my favorites, taken Christmas 1976 on the Breakwater at Morro Rock on the California Central Coast.

Christmas by the Seashore...

"Christmas on the California Central Coast" - 1976

May you all have a joyous Christmas Season

© 2009 Wednesday-Elf.  Updated 8/23/2018