Should our nieces & nephews be in the wedding, or is this day just about us?
Some couples think it is a family affair while others feel the distraction of children in the ceremony takes away from the bride’s “Queen for a Day Moment”.
Making children an attraction at a wedding:
1) Choose appropriate ages for the task. Three to Eight Years Old is usually the ideal age for Flower Girls and Ring Bearers. If you must have a very young child, a wagon pulled by an older participant is a good idea. Taking these young children out after making their appearance, avoids unrealistic expectations.
2) Preparation for the event should include rehearsing. Tell them what a special privilege it is to honor the bride & groom.
3) Emphasize good behavior such as acting like the big boys & girls.
4) Fashionable clothing like Mommy & Daddy can sometimes encourage “best behavior”. Little girls love to be the “Princess for the Day,” while little boys love to dress like Daddy on a special occasion.
5) Attitudes & expressions of children can sometimes ad humor & a sense of relaxation to the ceremony. Old Glory Ranch had a 3 ½ year old twin boy who announced when he exited the chapel after sitting down in the middle of the ceremony, ” ’Dis’ wedding is too ‘Wong’.”
6) When children are expected to stay at the reception, childcare is an excellent idea. Old Glory Ranch provides childcare & entertainment for these children so parents & grandparents can enjoy the celebration. Young children can get very tired & cranky when the evening gets late. Taking young children home after the ceremony is also an option.
Well behaved and adorable children can certainly add great joy to the pomp & circumstance of a wedding. If the bride & groom are set on children in their ceremony, cute kids can lighten the tension & provide wonderful photo opts for the memory book. This is a definite attraction. Some couples still view these precious children as a distraction. When choosing the “attraction” route, always be prepared for the unexpected!
Still on the fence when deciding whether to invite children or not?
Check out these articles from Wedding Wire (The 12 Secrets to Well-Behaved Ring Bearers and Flower Girls) and CNN.com (13 rules for a kid-friendly wedding (or not).
Photos by Darcie Westerlund of Innovative Photography
This year, the weatherman may not be forecasting a white Christmas in the hill country, but we just can’t seem to get enough of the beautiful colors popping all over the ranch from the late fall foliage! We love changing seasons, especially this time of year so we are not complaining one bit! Take a look at these “Seasonal Touches” in a natural state.
Check out some of our favorite seasonal touches and accents that serve as beautiful backdrops at Old Glory Ranch page by following this Link
We’d like to share our own version of a St. Christopher Columbus story with you!
While Old Glory Ranch’s main focus is hosting amazing weddings and corporate events here in the beautiful Texas Hill Country, Suzanne McCord, owner of the ranch, also raises and sells miniature donkeys. These adorable creatures have become quite popular and are often seen at events wearing brightly decorated wicker baskets and serving as “beer burros”!
A new addition arrived on Old Glory Ranch in the form of a miniature donkey who has been named St. Christopher Columbus [born the day after Columbus Day 2014]. His mother had a stillbirth in May of 2014 leaving us to believe she was no longer pregnant as a twin birth is uncommon with miniature donkeys. So we were a bit surprised when she gave birth in October to little Christopher. He was a pretty tiny little guy and was rejected by his mother right away. More than likely because of ‘animal instinct’ feeling that he wasn’t the healthiest of babies. In order to keep him safe, we stepped in.
We tried surrogate mother miniature donkey’s who also rejected him leaving only one option to give the little guy the fighting chance he deserved. Thus, Christopher became a ‘bottle baby’ and had lots of surrogate ‘Mothers’ in the form of Old Glory Ranch family and staff members who fed him around the clock for many weeks. He has delighted us with warm nuzzle greetings as we entered his pen to feed and stolen a bit of each of our hearts. If he could crawl in your lap, he would [he even tries!]! While his beginning proved to be a tough struggle that included a couple bouts of pneumonia, and other infections which required antibiotic injections several times a day, we felt he was pretty much out of the woods as he neared his 2 month birthday. We had been told by our vet that he will probably be very small even as an adult. For the first few visits to the vet he rode in the Old Glory Ranch manager’s pickup, not the trailer, but in the back seat of the truck like the ranch dog!
Suzanne often refers to him as the ‘million dollar donkey’, saying he will more than likely be a permanent fixture here. One day he will earn his keep by becoming one of our working donkey’s where clients and guests of weddings and events can get to know him as well. He continues to follow us around more like a puppy than a donkey. He likes to frolic and play with the other baby donkey who is younger than him, yet nearly twice his size!
When this piece was initially started, Christopher gave us an additional scare with yet another infection, so rather than having a sad ending to his story, we wanted to give him plenty of time to become what is ‘normal’ for him before finishing the first chapter of his story. He has proven to be quite a fighter and bounced back from that infection and celebrated his 4 month birthday earlier this week!
Today [2/13/14] he will be completely weaned from the bottle and will continue to frolic and play with his donkey, canine, and human friends. He’s really quite the celebrity even greeted one of the UPS drivers this week who was a bit surprised at the sight! We think he could be the first of his kind, a ‘dogkey’!
See more photos of our adorable miniature donkeys.
Come Enjoy Our Open House on Sunday, February 22, 2015 from 11am-2pm
If you are coming from the North/South Austin area we will even provide transportation to & from Old Glory Ranch via Motor Coach courtesy of Texan Motor Coach Lines, LLC. You may meet the bus in the parking lot of Kohl’s in Kyle, TX [20185 Market Place, Kyle Crossing]. The bus will depart promptly at 10:30am. [RSVP required to ride bus]
Those riding the bus can partake in a quick stop for wine tastings on the return trip! [pay small per person fee for wine tastings].
Join Our Guided Tours or Enjoy Self-Paced Tours to soak in all the Magic and Beauty of Old Glory Ranch!
Sample Tastings from Some of Our Favorite Bakers & Caterers
Visit with Various Vendors & Learn About Their Services
Hill Country Premier Lodging
Classic Cakes by Lori
Kellie’s Kandies & Cookies
Simon Lee Bakery
Catering with a Twist
Pappa D’s [Danna Family Catering]
Sullivan Street Caterers
INVITATIONS & PRINT PRODUCTS ~
PHOTOGRAPHERS/VIDEOGRAPHERS/PHOTO BOOTHS ~
Crescent Video Productions
Mike Reed Photo
SKIN CARE ~
Arbonne – Jennifer Hargraves Consultant
RSVP to 512-847-3646 or [email protected] by 2/15/15
to ride the Bus or Attend the Open House
Old Glory Ranch, a unique and fun Texas Hill Country event venue, was thrilled to serve as the backdrop for the WAGala and their featured entertainment, Hal Ketchum. The event was a huge success raising funds for our four legged friends to help them find their forever homes. Ketchum lit up the stage along with studio band members Kenny Grimes, Rick Richards and Paul Glasse at the Sunday fundraiser. Ketchum has three rescue dogs of his own and talked about life lessons to those in attendance as he poured his heart into each song. He has recently released his 11th album titled “I’m the Troubadour” which is available on iTunes.
WAG [Wimberley Adoption Group] & Rescue serves Wimberley and the surrounding areas including Dripping Springs and Blanco. WAG Rescue is a 501c3 non-profit organization who depends on volunteers, donations and fundraisers to be able to care for abandoned, neglected, unclaimed and surrendered dogs and puppies. They provide medical care for these animals, and place them in a nurturing foster environment where they receive training and learn socialization skills until they are ready to be adopted into loving, forever homes. WAG Rescue provides spay-neuter vouchers through Emancipet for Wimberley residents and is a resource for lost and found animals for our area. “We decided it was time to raise the bar for our fundraisers,” said WAG spokesperson Pat Davis. “What better way than to have a great entertainer such as Hal Ketchum and a beautiful Texas Hill Country backdrop like Old Glory Ranch. We feel like our mission was definitely accomplished.”
More about Hal Ketchum – Copied from his “I’m the Troubadour” bio:
“Five years ago, Hal Ketchum packed up his guitars and left Nashville, turning his back on a successful, 20+ year career in country music. He’s already sold more than 5 million albums, racking up a half-dozen Top 10 hits – including staples like “Small Town Saturday Night,” and “Hearts Are Gonna Roll” – along the way. But Ketchum was exhausted, and his multiple sclerosis, a condition that often left him partially paralyzed, wasn’t making matters any easier. He wanted to go home. And that’s exactly what the singer/songwriter did, heading back to Texas for some peace, quite, and serious introversion.
“I was hiding out,” he admits. “I’d been in the public for so long. I didn’t even go into town; I had my daughter bring me groceries. I develop a form of agoraphobia, really. I found pleasure in watching the stars at night and watching the sun during the afternoon. I also put out a lot of bird feeders and basically talked to myself all day long.”
It was a relaxing time. Try as he might, though, Ketchum couldn’t stop his musical wheels from spinning. As he sat on the porch of his home — a renovated, 19th century grist mill in the middle of the Texas Hill Country — he began documenting everything he saw. He jotted down the memories that crossed his mind, too. Before long, new songs began appearing. The process felt entirely different from Ketchum’s final years in Nashville, back when songwriting had been a job. This time around, songwriting was something more. It was personal. It was casual. It was also a rallying cry for Ketchum, who decided he wasn’t ready to give up music, after all.
Those new songs became the foundation of Ketchum’s newest album, I’m the Troubadour. Recorded in a series of single takes, I’m the Troubadour is the sound of an artist finding his own redemption in the strum of an acoustic guitar, the boom of a kick drum, and the trill of an upright piano. It’s an album inspired by years of struggle, performed by a songwriting legend who’s glad to finally get his groove back.
On “I’m the Troubadour,” Ketchum ditches the country rulebook and tackles a combination of folk, blues, and soul music instead, tying the whole thing together with the rootsy rumblings of his studio band — whose members include guitarist Kenny Grimes and drummer Rick Richards — and the same croon that helped make him a permanent member of the Grand Ole Opry in 1994. I’m the Troubadour also marks his first release for Music Road Records, an Austin-based label co-run by folk artist Jimmy LaFave.
Strangely enough, the latest release from Ketchum — now 61 years old — brings to mind the thrill of his earliest albums. Back then, Ketchum was a young cabinet maker from Gruene, TX, who wrote his own songs about love, longing, and life in the American South. He hit the country market shortly after artists like Lyle Lovett, Steve Earle, and Travis Tritt, three likeminded troubadours who also wrote their own material. A bemused Earle called the movement “the great credibility scare of 1990,” laughing at the fact that country music — typically a conservative genre — was suddenly being steered by young, creative wild men.
“I’m the Troubadour” has a similar sound, a left-of-center immediacy that makes it one of the most important albums in Ketchum’s career. After logging nearly two decades on the roster of Curb Records, Ketchum has earned the right to call his own shots. He isn’t following any rules. He isn’t catering to any trends. Instead, he’s simply following his muse wherever it leads, from the bluesy, roadhouse rock & roll of the title track — a biographical song about touring across the country, one stage at a time — to the jazzy swell of “New Mexican Rain.” Meanwhile, he also puts an updated stamp on two of his older tunes, even turning “I Know Where Love Lives” into a surprise duet with blues singer Tameca Jones.
“I’d reached a point during my time in Nashville where I’d fallen into that mill worker mentality, where you’re only as good as your last record,” Ketchum remembers. “If the phone didn’t ring for two days, I was crushed. I’d worked myself into this odd place, where you have to be validated by your previous accomplishments. To be liberated from that kind of pressure is really fantastic. The pressure’s off now. I’m just old Hal now. I’m 61 years old, and I still have a lot to say.”
Half a decade ago, Ketchum thought he’d permanently closed the book on his songwriting career. Thankfully, I’m the Troubadour starts a new chapter.”
And we are very pleased that he has!
WAG Rescue may be reached at  847-3200 or you may donate on their website at http://www.wimberleywagrescue.org
Old Glory Ranch extends warm wishes and congratulations to OGR alums Jenna Lee and Leif Babin on the arrival of their new baby boy, Trace, who arrived Sept. 3, 2014 @ 1:30am. The tiny tot weighed in at 7 lbs 11.5 oz and measured 20.5 inches long. Baby Trace, and his parents are all doing well.
Sparklers not only make a wonderful exit for the Texas Hill Country weddings, but also great photos. Old Glory Ranch found these very helpful tips for your perfect sparkler exit from one of our preferred photographers, “Photo Jennette” and wanted to share them with you here:
Today, we want to take a few minutes to highlight the best strategy for your perfect sparkler exit!
Tips for sparkler amazingness:
1. The big sparklers work best – The larger sparklers last up to 4-5 minutes, and will give your guests time to light them and then give you time to make your exit before they go out. The shorter ones will do the opposite. Half of them will be extinguished by the time the other half are lit.
2. Lighters are bad, sparklers are good. – We are certain if you have a wedding planner, they will already know this, but lighting on all 4 ends of the line with a lighter, and then having your guests light them off one another is the most effective way to spontaneously light 100 sparklers. For some reason, sparklers light each other almost instantly, while lighters take far to longer.
3. Bride and Groom should be ready, but hidden. – Before anyone lights a single sparkler, all of your guests should be lined up and ready to light their sparklers, and you (The Bride and Groom) should be in a designated, hidden spot that gives you easy access to your exit.
4. Have good help. – If you want to have a successful sparkler exit, you must have help. If you choose not to have a wedding coordinator, that’s O.K. but you still need good friends with organizational skills to help everyone get ready and lit. BEST PRACTICE – Have at least two people who are “designated lighters.” They each light two sparklers and then put away their lighters. “Designated lighter one” starts at the front and “designated lighter two” starts at the end. Using their lit sparklers, they should light a sparkler ever 6-8 guests and inform your guests to light off each other until they meet in the middle. Note: They should also let people know to hold the sparklers up and not to wave them around.
5. Make sure everyone is standing back. – These two helpers should know when their job is done, they need to give you the thumbs up and step into the line! It’s best not to start walking until your designated lighters are free and clear and you can have a clear path for your exit.
6. GO, GO, GO. – NO, NO, NO. Take your time!! Take all the time you want. You should happily mosey through the sparklers (soak it up and enjoy!), maybe stopping to smooch along the way if you feel like it. This gives your wedding photographers plenty of time to get the photograph that you are expecting. It also ensures you will safely make it through the line for sparklers.
So these are our most important tips for having the perfect sparkler exit from your wedding. Will they work perfectly every time? Maybe not, but if you follow these steps, your sparkler exit will be far better than if you don’t. In the end, you will have an amazing memory from an amazing day and all will go safely and smoothly.
Take a look at Meredith & Toby’s wedding through Photo Jennette’s lens!
For your Old Glory Ranch sparkler departure, we recommend the ’36” Gold’ for a longer burn time. Our staff distributes the sparklers to your guests and assists with getting them all lit, providing instructions along the way. During that process, our day-of-coordinator has the couple tucked away awaiting their cue that the sparklers are all ‘sparkling’ and the guests are instructed by our staff to ‘hold them high’ for the couples safe exit!
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Help with Vendors
Need help with some vendor recommendations? After two decades in this business, we have developed relationships with many different vendors which helps us match you to the ones you need.