what if it’s sunny?

by Joanna on May 26, 2012

When Mike and I chose to have our wedding reception in a tent, we knew it felt right.   Fonthill Castle in Doylestown, PA is a picturesque property with lots of green.  Living in a city, the serenity of the sights and sounds of the property were something that instantly attracted us. It felt so peaceful, so free. This would be the best place for us to get married.

But our parents asked “what if it rains?”

My first thought in response to this was “what if it’s 75 and sunny?” Yes, there is the possibility of rain on our wedding day.  But there is also an equal possibility that it’s a gorgeous spring day. And that’s what I decided to focus on.

This is my natural reaction to things.  I think of best case.  I’m a true optimist.

Yesterday I was chatting with a friend about which grad school she should attend.  She’s deciding between two schools.  At one point she said something equivalent to “if it rains, will I wish I went to the other school?”

And my thought was the equivalent of “what if it’s sunny?” What if the exact opposite of that bad situation happens? You’ll be happy you chose the school you did.

I think it’s natural to ask “what if?” and consider the potential snags in a situation. It’s smart even.  Of course you want to consider less-than-ideal scenarios. But I think it’s best when we ask ourselves this question in a pragmatic way, in a way that opens your mind to a contingency plan in case x, y, or z happens. But don’t let the possibility of it not working out keep you from going after the best case, what you really want.

It’s kind of like that saying “don’t let the fear of striking out keep you from playing the game.” (ok, maybe that’s from A Cinderella Story, whateva).

Our wedding day was exactly as I pictured it.  A gorgeous spring day. Sun shining. Not too hot.  And as we sat on a picnic blanket on the grounds of Fonthill before the reception with the breeze blowing past us taking in the whole day, I was glad we followed our hearts and made decisions with the best possible scenario in mind.

What if we had taken our parents concerns to heart, let their fear of rain eclipse our hope of sun, and changed our plans to a more rain-friendly site? What if we booked a hotel ballroom instead and wished we were spending our sunny wedding day at Fonthill?

The next time you find yourself worrying “what if it rains?” ask yourself this:


{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Kim July 30, 2013 at 4:02 pm

Hi Joanna,

I am currently looking at Fonthill Castle for my wedding and everyone is giving me a really hard time! They keep talking about the possibility of rain and now I am doubting the venue but your feelings on the subject made me hopeful. What month was your wedding? I am thinking of May. Do you think you would have been just as happy if it rained? Would it still be a nice venue? I worry about people walking in the rain to the bathroom.


2 Joanna July 31, 2013 at 10:49 am

Hi Kim!
I’m not kidding, we didn’t have a rain plan because I truly believed there wouldn’t be rain on my wedding day. Not so much my wedding day, more so my husband’s wedding and it didn’t. This was a tough one! But I thought about this overnight and here’s what I came up with:

  • I think it would only be a big problem if it was like torrential downpour. If it’s just raining a little bit, it’d be fine. The tent has sides and you may not even need them. The tent has a solid floor so even it rains for days before, you’d be ok.
  • The bathroom thing may be an issue but here’s what I’d do: buy a bunch of cute umbrellas and leave them in a basket by the exit. If it seemed like it would be really muddy, I’d ask Memorable Affairs about setting up a solid pathway. If they couldn’t do it, I’d have my dad whip up a little wooden walkway (he’s good with that stuff).
  • The other thing is that we had our ceremony in a church so I think made me feel better about rain. If you plan to have your ceremony at Fonthill, the rain plan is a smaller tent. Again, it may not be the best thing if it rains but it could also be super romantic. There’s some magical and passionate about rain: think that scene in the Notebook–oh. my. god.

    Oh and a thought I just had: we went to a wedding that was in a tent outside and it was 1) the hottest day of summer and 2) started torrential downpouring during the dancing part of the reception (and the tent didn’t have sides). And it was the best wedding we’ve ever been to. It was so much fun, the rain didn’t ruin a thing. I truly believe that the bride and groom set the tone of the day. And that couple was so light-hearted and happy that so were all the guests.

    Biggest piece of advice: Make a decision that honors what you and your fiance want and own that decision. Be very confident in that decision. And ignore the naysayers. On your wedding day, bask in the love. That’s what it’s all about.

    Let me know if you have any other questions!

    Sending lots of love your way,


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