The Importance of Detail

Several months ago my granddaughter was asked to be a petal girl in a wedding for a friend of mine. She was very excited! The invitations arrived and they were beautiful. A special little pouch contained an RSVP form with a stamped return envelope, a map, a list of accommodations for overnight travelers and a seating chart for the reception. We immediately RSVP’d and began planning our trip.

We found the perfect dresses, purses, shoes and all of the usual stuff that goes into a day such as this. The big day finally came and my granddaughter could barely contain her excitement. Every detail you could imagine had been planned for and packed the night before with no room for error. Off we went.

After 3 hours of driving, we stopped and changed into our formal clothes and I proceeded to get out the map that had been included with our invitation. Much to my dismay I did not see an address anywhere, only a set of directions to “the house.” I mentioned it to my husband and we both thought that maybe it was a private road and we were going to the only house on it (which is not at all uncommon here in the Pacific Northwest.) Turns out we couldn’t have been more wrong.

There were hundreds of homes all within private gates that could not be accessed without codes. No magic signs to point the way, no balloons, no phone number, no house number and absolutely no way to determine which house the wedding was being held at. We stopped and asked many people, went to several little shops and stores along the way but all to no avail.

Finding myself unable to contain my disappointment any longer, and with the wedding already under way for over an hour, I flipped down my visor and looked at my granddaughter who was being unusually quiet in the back seat. “Are you okay Boo?” I asked her. “Yes grandma” she said in a very hushed and low voice. All of my grandmother wisdom came rushing forward as I turned around and said to her, “Baby girl, it looks like grandma & papa don’t have the address for the wedding and we are very upset about that right now. But I’ll tell you what! Let’s all go to a restaurant and you can eat whatever you want in your fairy princess dress and we’ll just make a BIG adventure out of this okay?” She threw up her hands and yelled “OKAY!” as tears let loose from her eyes.

I started crying too, and my husband told us to knock it off (he’s a big wuss) but it was no use! We had to cry. Something like this just can’t be stoically brushed off as an everyday occurrence, and our granddaughter needed to know that it was okay to be disappointed when you put so much work into something and it didn’t work out, not because of anything YOU did, but because there should always be allowances for human error. What a lesson to be learned here though.

Talk about the importance of detail! Something as simple as a house number could have changed everything. An even more horrifying thought came when I also realized that we were not the only ones who had received invitations…I couldn’t even imagine how many others had gone through the same ordeal! The bride and groom are honeymooning for now, but I’ll be curious when they get back to hear if there were any other stories similar to ours. It just goes to show you how important it is to not get so caught up in the wow factor, that you forget the simple things…like an address!


  1. Well I understand that you did not find the place because you have no address. I for instance, got lost because I turned right rather then left. The trip the should only take us 2 hrs tops instead it took us FIVE hours to reach. Beat that Penny!!

  2. Yes you would think people would be more careful when sending out invitations. I can only imagine how upset your grand daughter was.(Not to mention you and your husband) The honeymooners probably think all their friends developed last minute plans. Well I hope the restaurant had good desert!

  3. Penny – you are truly a gem!

  4. Oh, I can’t even imagine what I would do to try and sooth that disappointment if it was my little girl, I get a little choked up just thinking about it. Way to pull it together for your granddaughter Penny!

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