It's the morning of the 12th of September, Callum's wedding. We are all rushing around getting the last things ready. Mum and Imogen have gone to take the orders of service to the church, Charlotte and Gemma-Rose are making sure they have their clothes ready and I'm downloading my photos from my camera so that I will have lots of space to take more at the wedding.
Dad comes out of his bedroom. "What tie shall I wear?" he asks. He has around fifteen ties in his arms.
Charlotte, Gemma-Rose and I crowd around to take a look. We pick out our favourite tie.
"What kind of knot should I do in it?" Dad wonders. He hasn't worn a tie in ages and looks rather excited about getting to wear one for the wedding. "How about a windsor knot?" he suggests, demonstrating how it's done. Having picked out his outfit for the wedding, Dad wanders off to see to other things.
Around midday, Callum arrives at our house to get ready, but he doesn't actually do any getting ready for a quite some time. He stands around in the kitchen eating lunch and chatting to Dad about cars. No one would think he was getting married in only a couple of hours’ time.
When Mum and Imogen get home from the church, we get changed. After slipping into our dresses, I set to work braiding everyone's hair. I have spent the days before the wedding practicing the hairstyles so that they will be perfect.
I have finished everyone's hair before Callum even thinks about changing into his suit. But when he does change, he has a slight bit of trouble. He emerges from the bathroom looking embarrassed. "Dad, could you help me with something?"
"What's the matter?" Dad asks.
"I can't tie a tie," Callum confesses.
Dad rushes over, takes the tie from him and sets about tying it for him. He looks delighted to be able to show off his tie tying skills.
Duncan comes out of his room in his suit, but his tie doesn't look right.
"Here, let me help you." Dad fixes up Duncan's tie for him.
Finally, we're ready to go to the church. We all head out to the cars, but before we can leave, our next-door-neighbor stops us. He is going to be Callum's best man.
"I'm having some trouble," he says. "I haven't worn a tie since my own wedding and I have no idea how to tie it."
Dad grins and jumps out of the car to help.
Then we set off to the church. We're early. Callum has to welcome all his guests and Imogen, who is singing the wedding music, has to practice.
The guests arrive slowly, and most of them don't enter the church. instead they stand around talking to Callum.
Someone spots the bride's car coming down the road. Suddenly everyone rushes into the church.
I take my place in our pew at the front of the church. A few minutes later, the organist starts playing the processional music and Gemma-Rose, the flower girl, walks down the aisle. She is followed by all the bridesmaids and finally the bride, Casey, herself.
I snap as many pictures with my camera as I can. I don't want to miss a moment of the wedding.
Callum and Casey are not only having a wedding. We will also be celebrating Mass. Dad is one of the readers and one of Casey's relations is the other. Imogen is singing the psalm.
After the readings, Callum and Casey say their marriage vows. Then it's time for communion. Before I know it, Callum and Casey have signed the register and everyone is walking out of the church. I'd forgotten just how weddings seem to fly by.
It's a few hours until the reception, but that isn't a problem because the wedding photographer wants to take a lot of photos. He begins by taking photos around the church, before moving the wedding party down the road to the lake.
While the photographer is busy with his huge black camera (it was a Canon!), I’m clicking away with my smaller Nikon camera. I want to have a lot of photos to remember the day by.
The photographer is nearly finished. "Would you like to go get some milkshakes before the reception?" Mum asks.
We all agree. Dad drives everyone except Imogen and Mum to McDonald’s for milkshakes. Imogen and Mum are going home to feed our animals.
My sister Felicity and her husband Graham (they came home from the other side of Australia for the wedding) have also gone to McDonald’s for drinks. We sit together and chat until it is time for the reception.
By the time we get to the reception, most of the guest have already arrived, but the bride and groom aren't anywhere to be seen. We all tuck into nibblies while we wait for them. After about fifteen minutes, Casey glides into the room on Callum's arm.
Everyone finds their table. Imogen has made name tags for everyone so that they know where they're sitting. At my table is Imogen, Charlotte, Felicity, Graham and a few friends.
Each table is called, one by one, to go to the buffet to get some food. We're one of the last tables to be called. We sit for ages waiting. It doesn't really matter because we're all talking to each other. Then finally it’s our turn. The buffet is full of our favourite foods. Callum must have chosen most of it. We go back to our table and tuck into our food. It all tastes amazing.
People start to get up from their tables so they can talk to other people. Everyone looks like they're having a great time.
Someone discovers the jukebox in the corner and starts playing music.
Then it's time for dessert. Once again, each table is called forward, one at a time, but this time we don't have to wait quite so long.
While we are eating Callum comes over to our table. "Has anyone tried the crumble?" he asks.
We all shake our heads. "There was sticky date pudding on offer. How could we pick anything over that?" Charlotte tells him.
Someone calls for the bride and groom to dance. After a bit of protesting, Callum and Casey head outside to the dance floor. They hold each other close and shuffle in time to the music.
After a minute or so, someone invites all the other couples to join in. Dad takes Mum's hand and leads her out onto the dance floor.
The music comes to an end, and everyone hurries back inside. It's getting a bit chilly outside.
The speeches start a little while later. Casey's parents’ have someone else speak on their behalf. Then it's Dad's turn. He has spent a long time writing it, but it was worth all the trouble.
Gemma-Rose yawns widely. I'm tired too. Most of the guest have already left.
"We should go home," Mum decides. We head over to Callum to say goodbye. Moments later, we’re climbing into our car to drive home. It has been a long, but amazing day.
Has anyone in your family gotten married?
, by Sophie