The Very Best NEW YEAR’S EVE Ever!

By Linda Elissalde
I have observed many New Year’s Eve events. Some were wonderful, and one broke my heart. I have attended, and been in, many weddings. They were all quite lovely. However, 2021 combined New Year’s Eve and a wedding. Not just any wedding, but the marriage of our granddaughter Rachel Katz to Brent Westbrook.

Rachel and Brent married on a sunny afternoon December 31, 2021. It was the most marvelous wedding I have ever attended. They pledged their hearts at 7F Lodge in College Station, Texas. Lori, Brent’s very talented mom, created all of the decorations for the event, and winter weather provided breezy, warm temperatures.

December 30th morning found us moving out to 7F Lodge after we gals had our manicures and pedicures. WOW! What a place. Each family had their own distinctive cottage. Decors echoed cabin names: Hill Country Lodge, Sugar Shack, Batts Ferry Log Cabin, The Barn, Sully’s Place, France and Spain. We think Grandpa and Grandma Elissalde had the cutest one – MEXICO! Every residence welcomed folk with CDs playing music representing its lodging. Anything anyone could need was provided including food, a stocked refrigerator, robes, comfortable beds etc. etc. etc. All had a sunken jacuzzi bath for two. Ours was heart shaped. Getting into, and out of, was quite comical, rather reminiscent of the old Dick Van Dyke TV show where Mary’s toe was stuck in the bathtub faucet.

Wedding Day dawned with maid of honor, bridesmaids and moms off to The Bride’s Cabin for professional make up, hair designs and a few mimosas. The ladies were allowed inside to see Rachel when she was dressed. I must admit to a few tears when I saw how beautiful she looked. Everyone gathered outside the quaint, turn of the century bright white 7F antique chapel a bit before 4:00 PM. Brent’s face truly lit up when he viewed Rachel in her wedding dress escorted by her dad and dog Stella. The young women attendants were gorgeous, and the men looked so fine. If there were any show stealers, it had to be the ring bearer and flower girl. They performed magnificently. To top it off, Officiant Steve Larkin was absolutely marvelous. (FYI: He was Santa in many Hallmark Christmas movies.)

The delicious dinner included a wedding pie instead of cake. We dined with our friends from out of town Mary Ellen Smith, Dr. Melanie and Mack Wallace. Marcel and I were invited by Rachel and Brent to join them in their wedding dance. Rachel had chosen our special song, “At Last,” for this occasion. (More tears). Toasts and vigorous dancing followed. Marcel and I headed back to MEXICO pretty early. However, he woke me up at 11:40, and we joined the younger folk who were still up dancing. Super DJ Columbus said they had not stopped the whole evening. We did lift a glass to the New Year.

In 1965, Burt Bacharach and Hal David composed, “What the World Needs Now is Love, Sweet Love”. If ever a night showcased love, sweet love, it was December 31, 2021. Rachel’s mom Kit Elissalde, Dale Owens, dad Mark Katz, brother Ben Katz, Brent’s mom Lori, dad Rick and sister Madison Westbrook, attendants, family and friends shared in this glorious moment. What an outstanding way to welcome in 2022.

After a lifetime attending weddings and greeting new years, I most definitely declare December 31, 2021, THE VERY BEST NEW YEAR’S EVE EVER!


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One Response to “The Very Best NEW YEAR’S EVE Ever!”

  1. Brenda Beust Smith says:

    So glad to see you and Marcel are still the cutest couple ever! (Maybe tying with Rita & Charles — have to all get together one of these days to make sure!)

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