Kader’s and Zak’s wedding

I took so many pictures last weekend that I was still processing them through last night, so I’m finally getting around to writing a post about it. As you probably already know, my dad fell and broke a vertebra in his neck, so I’m worried about him, but we did have a good weekend with Kader and Zak and I want to honor them with this blog.

There were professional photographers at the wedding and we weren’t allowed to take pictures then, but I got some pictures during the rehearsal the day before that I can substitute for that. I’ll start with Sunday morning when I met with Kader and her bridesmaids at 8:00 to work on getting ready for the wedding. Zak’s mom came a little later with food and there were children there as well, so we had a great time!

Kader had gotten short robes for herself and her bridesmaids to wear while putting on their makeup and doing their hair.
A friend of Kader’s named Stephanie entertained the children with a program on her phone that did funny things to their faces!
Another child whose name I didn’t get. These children are all nephews and nieces of Zak.
These two little angels are Emmy and Talia, I think. They were preparing to be flower girls at the wedding.
Emmy is a study in perpetual motion. She kept us all entertained. Pictured above from left to right are Kader, Rebecca (Zak’s younger sister), Julia (Kader’s Maid of Honor), and Kimberly, Emmy’s mom and Zak’s older sister.
The other bridesmaid is another of our Turkish daughters, Eylem (AKA Lara) who came up from Florida to be a bridesmaid.
The mother of the groom, Renee Marek. She and I had been comparing notes all through November about trying to find dresses to wear as the moms.
I could see why Kader asked Julia (on the right) to be her Maid of Honor. She was cool-headed, helpful, and able to relax everyone with her levity!
Talia wanted a little bit of makeup on her eyes, but it tickled! The woman in the background was one of the professional photographers.

At 1:00 in the afternoon, the guys got together to get ready. Mostly all they had to do was put on their clothes and their boutonnieres and call it good! They were already done by the time Mark got there.

Each of the bridesmaids had a different shade of blue dress. From left to right are me (in a borrowed dress – thank you, Vickie!), Kimberly, Lara, Rebbeca, and Julia.
Then they took a selfie in the other direction with Zak’s mom, Renee at the other end.
The professional photographer had Mark turn his back while Kader came up behind him and when she tapped him on the shoulder, he turned around and saw his beautiful daughter in her dress for the first time!
The photographer conferred with Kader throughout the photo shoot.
Kimberly explained to Kader about something old, something new, something borrowed, and something blue. For the something borrowed, Kimberly loaned Kader the bouquet she used at her own wedding which was also done in blue.
Kader had been tense earlier in the morning, so it was nice to see her laughing with Julia!
Finally, the guests had mostly arrived and it was time for us to start lining up to go into the chapel. This was Uncle Ron (on Zak’s side) talking with Talia. Uncle Ron told me that Kader and I look alike and that she even has my mannerisms. He apparently mistook me for her birth mom, but I was flattered!

At this point, I am reverting to the pictures I took during the rehearsal since I wasn’t able to take any of the wedding.

The bridesmaids lined up on Kader’s side…
…and the groomsmen on Zak’s side. The man in between Zak and Kader was the officiant. I don’t know the names of all the groomsmen, but I believe the one in yellow is Zak’s brother, Wesley, then Chris, the one whose name I don’t know, and finally Fabrizio. He had come to introduce himself to Mark and me in the parking lot the day before. Zak owns a duplex and Fabrizio rents the upstairs while Zak and Kader live downstairs.
Of course, being the “Father of the bride”, Mark walked Kader down the aisle.
The guy in the background with the video camera was live-streaming the whole thing to Kader’s family in Turkey.
After the wedding, I was able to take pictures again along with the professional photographer. This is Zak’s siblings.
Here he is with his parents, Renee and Timothy.
Our two daughters, Lara and Kader
The flower girls wanted to twirl in their flouncy dresses. Zak looked on.
May I introduce Mr. and Mrs. Marek!
Kader had asked Mark to give a speech at the reception, so he sat and studied what he’d been working on before the reception.
This is Zak’s newest niece. I didn’t get her name, but she and her binky were adorable!
And this is our Turkish son, Cha, who flew up from Florida to see Kader get married. We haven’t seen him in quite some time.
Zak’s grandmother who was widowed in October appears to be telling Rebecca that it’s her turn to get married next!
Zak and Kader triumphantly entered the reception while everyone applauded.
Feeding each other the cake
This was their cake, and the rest of us had a choice of different flavored, filled cupcakes.
Sitting by themselves at the table for the bride and groom.
Several people had been asked to give speeches at the reception, but Mark was the only one who gave two speeches. First, he gave the speech he suspected Kader’s dad would have given if he’d been able to be there and speak English. Then he gave his own speech as her stand-in father.
The couple having the first dance.
Mark and I did a couple of slow dances, and then I invited Cha, who had come alone, to dance with me.
Even the baby got out there on the floor and danced!
There were several group dances, one of which was a traditional Turkish dance that Kader had taught some of the family and friends the night before.
Zak covered Kader’s eyes and she threw her bouquet for all the single women in the place…
…which her friend, Julia, caught!
Then more dancing. Here Cha and Mark were showing their moves.
Mark gave Kader one last hug…
…and then everyone went outside to give Zak and Kader a proper send-off as they start their new lives together.

Zak and Kader didn’t open their gifts until Monday morning, and Kader texted me to tell me that she loved what we had given them. I made a crazy quilt Christmas stocking for each of them and some reusable gift bags. Inside the gift bags, there were all sorts of little presents, including a bride ornament and a groom ornament I had gotten at a Christmas shop in Door County. I thought they would have fun opening gift after gift, and I got them started with a bunch of gifts for their first married Christmas together!

Congratulations to Zak and Kader Marek! (That’s going to take some getting used to!)

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