“Quaint Affairs was so much different. Most importantly, it wasn’t a bridal gown store but a showcase for her wedding consultant services. When customers walked into Quaint Affairs, they often gasped. Melanie knew it took their breath away. She’d planned it that way. When guests opened the antique door, they were greeted with twinkling lights, the melodious background of violins, and the sweet smell of fresh roses. The magical setting whisked her potential clients into the heart of a fairy tale”. ~Shattered Guilt
I hope you’ve enjoyed visiting Bay Town. Today we’re dropping in on Melanie’s wedding shop. It’s a bit of an enigma because she’s a wedding consultant who didn’t really want a store. Owning one proved to be a nightmare in California, which is why she moved to Bay Town. The Prelude Novella, Revived Hope, is releasing in November of this year. I hope you’ll enjoy reading all about it there.
So, why does she have a storefront for her consulting business? It’s just me. I loved the idea of a wedding boutique-type thing, and the concept of a community of shop owners gave me the warm fuzzies. Therefore…voila! Quaint Affairs.
Another reason is that I’m also a compulsive planner. Well, maybe not obsessive, but I do love making schedules. While homeschooling eight children, I had to. But it started when I was young. Ask my sisters about how I helped my mom make our summer chores schedule. That didn’t go over too well, but the real test came when I planned my wedding. It was game on, and I had an impressive notebook, which I lost once and thought I’d lost my mind with it. Fortunately, the florist found it and complimented me, but he also said I was an over-achiever. The nerve. But you have to dream, right?
Weddings and More Weddings!
Subsequently, with my wedding under my belt, I was more than excited to plan my son and his fiance’s wedding some thirty-four years later. It was a destination wedding for them. He was a single missionary living in Japan, and she lived with her family there as well. They flew in one week before the wedding. Thanks to lots of help, it came off like a dream. Soon, though came another wedding, and another—six more to be exact, like snowballs. You’d think I’d be burnt out on the planning end, and I was for a while. All dreams of becoming a wedding planner were buried.
Although I’ve kept my Planning Spreadsheet for one of the years that we had two weddings, I decided not to share it. Yes, I said, one of the years, because there was another year where we had two as well. Anyway, if I showed you, you wouldn’t believe it. Not only did we have two weddings, but two graduations, the birth of a new grandchild, along with too many birthdays, holidays, and all the everyday happenings of family life. It was crazy, and there were times I wasn’t sure I’d make it. Although, that spreadsheet is a good reminder that God equips us for anything He’s put in our path. After all, they are His plans.
The Quintessential Main Street
So, Melanie’s shop is situated a few doors down from Second Chances, Carol’s thrift store, which is a few doors down from Max’s Pink Rosette, the florist. And remember the Mockingbird Café? Everyone pops in there, and it’s around the corner at the end of Main Street. Quaint Affairs is a small two-story white brick structure with an apartment up top that remains vacated. Melanie’s daughter Lacey describes the quintessential street beautifully. It’s old, a bit eclectic, and reminiscent of the French Quarter in New Orleans, yet another location for the most suspenseful parts in the book.
How’s that for a budding romance?
Let’s set aside that and focus on the romance part. The book opens with Pastor Brooks casually popping in on Melanie for the first time. In her wedding shop. How’s that for a budding romance? He picks up her brochure and reads “Quaint Affairs ~ Creating Unforgettable Memories for a Lifetime.” Pastor Desmond quips, ” That it’s a big order to fill.”
And it is, for only God can do that. Yet, weddings seem to be the most magical thing on earth. Next to babies being born, I can’t think of another more joyful time. Setting aside the stress level that every wedding has, everything else is like a fairy-tale. It still brings me joy when I recall my daughters as brides. They were so blissful, genuinely enchanting. I almost cry thinking of them. I know. I’m sappy. I once apologized to a friend for writing that way, and she said, “Yeah, you are a little sappy. But I like it.” There you have it.
How precious we are to God.
Melanie never had a wedding like my daughters, but she rethinks the importance of what’s vital in her life as her faith is challenged. Sometimes I have to remind myself of the same, and when I think of heaven, it puts me right back on track. Just picture it. We, as Christ’s bride approaching Him one day, seeing Him in all His glory. What a magnificent sight. It’s easy to forget that analogy at weddings, but what a great reminder of how precious we are to God and how glorious He is. Now that’s a wedding memory for a lifetime, both in this one and the next.
Well, our trip to Bay Town is almost over, and I’ll be leaving you after tomorrow. I’m in Washington playing with two of my grandkids, and I’m trusting God to make these memories last a lifetime — pray for safe memories while I try out the trampoline.
Please join me tomorrow for my last Author Intensive Post as we close out our tour of the delightful community of Bay Town.