Fairy Tale Weddings Do Not Make Happily-Ever-After Marriages

Welcome Today I’m going to talk briefly about weddings, including mine, and share a few opinions I have about weddings and marriage. Guess what? They are NOT the SAME thing! If you’ve been married a few years, you know what I’m talking about here! Today’s recipe is for Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cake with Maple Cinnamon Frosting. Thanks for stopping by.   Note–I may receive small compensation from advertisers or affiliate links seen on this blog. For additional information, please see my terms and disclosure page.fairy tale weddings

Food For Thought  Most every little girl dreams of her wedding day.  I know I spent a lot of time as a little girl playing bride with my Barbies and dressing up and pretending myself.  As I grew up my dream wedding changed with styles and trends.  But it seemed to take a long time to find my groom.  By my mid-20’s I’d stopped fantasizing about the perfect wedding.  I also think I had a more realistic perspective on finances and budgets at that point in my life.  And then I met the man of my dreams.  My husband and I dated for about 18 months before he proposed, and I’d be lying if I said I hadn’t been getting impatient for that moment.  I knew that he was the man I loved and wanted to spend the rest of my life with.  By the time he got around to asking me to be his wife, I just wanted to marry him, the wedding was sort of secondary in my mind.  Oh, and the reality of my parents words were there too, there’s no money for a big wedding.  Truth!  My younger brother was getting ready to go off to college, my parents had health issues, and I was a young teacher still in the “starting out” phase with my own college debt to pay off.  To say funds were tight is probably an understatement.  My favorite flower had always been pink roses, so I knew what I wanted for flowers and since my husband and I don’t drink or dance, we knew a large reception was not necessary either.  We decided we would each only have one attendant.  We knew we wanted to marry outdoors and borrowed some beautiful property of family friends to make that happen.  We cut so many corners in our wedding budget, you would probably wonder if we had a wedding at all.  Most of the time I look back and think, wow, we did good!  But every now and then, I feel like I missed out on something special.  I haven’t had a lot of people look at our wedding photos with awe and say, wow, that was really beautiful.  The day of the wedding I was so focused on the idea of getting married and starting this new life together, I didn’t even think about being the “princess bride” for the day.  Looking back, I can think of things I would have changed, but then I realize it doesn’t really matter.  The wedding was just an event, a day of gathering some family and friends to celebrate one of the best days of my life.  The important part comes after the wedding…the marriage!

wedding bouquet
My pink rose and ivy bouquet that my mom made for me from discounted flowers at JoAnn’s.

As much work as it is to pull off a beautiful wedding, it’s much harder to pull off a beautiful marriage.  Marriage is hard work and no amount of fairy tales or perfect weddings are going to change that fact.  However much energy and “investment” you put into that wedding, you better plan on putting about 100 times that into your marriage.  The cost of weddings are getting pretty outrageous, to boot!  I read a statistic that said the average wedding in 2016 was $35,300!  That price tag had increased a crazy 16% from 2012 and the wedding industry is now worth billions!  That would make a heck of a down payment on a house, or even buy one (or both) of you a brand new car.  The practical side of my personality is more interested in long term benefits than quick moments of excitement with all of that money.  The thing is, investing all of those dollars, emotions, and energies into that one-day experience does not guarantee a long or happy marriage.  In 2016, the same year weddings are costing over thirty-K, the number of divorces in the United States was close to the 1-million mark.  That’s almost 50 percent of married couples calling it quits.  So is there a correlation between the cost of weddings and the divorce rate?  Well, there are no definitive answers on this, but lots of speculation and scores of personal opinion.  I read articles on this subject from the New York Post, PBS.org, and the business2community website, and all supported the idea that the more expensive the wedding, the more likely it is to end in divorce.  When I shared this with my husband, I couldn’t help but add, “Looks like we’re in good shape, then, honey!”  One article stated that if a wedding cost $20,000 or more, the marriage was 3.5 times more likely to end in divorce than those who had weddings costing less than $10,000.  Couples spending less than $1000 on their event saw the lowest divorce rating.  Interesting!  A lot of the articles mentioned the excessive debt the couple starts out with adds stress and fighting to their early relationship, often with couples fighting about spending even before the big day.  Basically, the articles I read supported my theory–fairy tale weddings do not make happily-ever-after marriages.  I am NOT saying do not celebrate your marriage with a wedding.  It is a very important event worth celebrating, but I do think practicality and level heads should prevail in the planning.  And no Bridezillas, PLEASE!  It’s too early for your husband to see your ugly side!

wedding photo #1
One of the pictures of my husband and I from our wedding day in 2004.

So if an expensive and extravagant wedding celebration isn’t going to secure your marriage, what will?  Having a home and marriage based on the Word of God.  Prayer for your husband, prayer for your marriage, prayer for your home and family.  A marriage based on trust and communication.  Are you going to experience difficulties?  Absolutely!  Are you going to get angry with your spouse sometimes?  You bet!  Will there be days you wonder, what was I thinking?  Probably!  Will you pull through?  Most likely, especially if you, TOGETHER, will seek God during times of struggle and times of bounty and blessing.

Recommended Reading  I have found these books very helpful for my journey as a Christian wife.  I wish I had known about them earlier in our marriage, but as they say, it’s never too late.

Today’s Scriptures  God has given us so many instructions and words of wisdom in regard to our marriages  We see some pretty direct messages in Ephesians chapter 5, but I want to look at some other verses today.  Our household is in sort of a valley right now, so we are trying very hard to use God’s word and guidance to help us get through this season in our marriage.  How can you apply these words to your marriage?

Song of Solomon 3:4  “Scarcely had I passed them when I found the one my heart loves.  I held him and would not let him go…”  When times are tough, sometimes it helps to reflect on those early times in our marriage when we were so in love with each other, we didn’t even want to let each other go.  Try again…hold on to each other like you don’t want to let go!

Song of Solomon 8:6-7  “Place me like a seal over your heart, like a seal on your arm; for love is as strong as death, its jealousy unyielding as the grave.  It burns like a blazing fire, like a mighty flame.  Many waters cannot quench love; rivers cannot wash it away.  If one were to give all the wealth of his house for love, it would be utterly scorned.”  There are some Biblical reasons for divorce.  I cannot extend judgement for those that end their marriage, based on their own circumstances.  But what I do know, based on these verses, is I don’t buy the whole line of “I just don’t love you anymore.”  You may be bored in life, you may not have things going the way you hoped or planned, but if you ever truly loved one another as in the kind of love that leads to marriage and becoming one, there is no river that can wash that love away.  It doesn’t just go away or stop.  Hold on.  Pray.  Talk about it.  Work on it.  The love is still there.  Side note–I have some tears running right now…this is deep stuff, friends.

1 Peter 4:8  “Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins.”  Well, thank goodness!  I have said it before and will continue to say, my husband and I are not perfect people.  I can be quite difficult and moody and I’m a little bit of a control freak.  My husband is easy-going to the point of being passive and his spiritual life is not as high on his priority list as I think it should be.  But we LOVE each other!  God has blessed us with each other and that love and because of that love we can work through a “multitude of sins.”  Thank you and amen!

Today’s Recipe  Well, I think fall is starting to show up here in our part of the country…slowly.  And everyone seems to be ready.  We’ve all been trying to get out our pumpkin spice everything for the past couple of weeks.  So today, let’s marry some great flavors in this delicious dessert.  I love pumpkin and chocolate together.  I love maple and cinnamon together.  Let me present to you Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cake with Maple Cinnamon Frosting.

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cake with Maple Cinnamon Frosting

For the cake (inspired by WhatsGabyCooking)

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ginger
  • 1/2 tsp allspice
  • 1/2 tsp ground cloves
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1 1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Grease and flour 2 round cake pans.  In medium bowl, whisk together flour, spices, baking soda, and salt.  In large bowl, beat butter and sugars together on medium speed, about 2 minutes.  Add egg, vanilla, and pumpkin and continue to beat until well combined.  Add in flour mixture, beating slowly another 1-2 minutes.  Place batter into prepared pans and bake 25-30 minutes.  Remove cake pans to cooling racks.  After ten minutes, remove cakes from pans to cooling racks and allow to cool completely before frosting.

For the Frosting (inspired by The Novice Chef)

  • 1 1/2 pkgs cream cheese, softened
  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 2 TBS maple syrup
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • 6 cups powdered sugar
  • In large mixing bowl, beat together cream cheese and butter until smooth.  Add maple syrup, vanilla, and cinnamon and beat to combine.  Add in powdered sugar, one cup at a time, beating until desired frosting consistency is achieved.  Frost cooled pumpkin cakes and garnish as desired.  I garnished my cake with gold sugar, chocolate shavings, pumpkin truffles rolled in graham cracker crumbs (recipe at Sally’s Baking Addiction), and faux fall foliage.  Very festive!