MnM Title Photo Montage

Meet the Couple

The Engagement
The Wedding
Happy Times!

Elements of Our Wedding:
Our Traditions
Our Rings

Time and Place

Jewish Traditions
The Chuppah

A chuppah is a canopy supported over four poles. It symbolizes the house that the couple will build together, and the roof with no walls is a symbolic invitation for friends and family to come visit the couple. The cloth is normally either a simple sheet or a Tallit, and they can range from minimalist to ornate.


The kippah is the traditional Jewish head covering, the purpose of which is to provide a separation between the wearer and God, as well as to mask male pattern baldness. Traditionally only men wear kippot, but nowadays anything goes. The kippot for our ceremony were made by Michael's grandmother, Frances.

A tallit is a Jewish prayer shawl, worn by male Jews during prayer, or by male orthodox Jews most of the time. Michael's tallit bag was made with love by his grandmother, Annette.

Here's a joke about a Tallit: An orthodox Jew walks into a dry cleaners, and asks him to clean his favorite tallit. He comes back the next day, but it's not ready yet. A week goes by without a word from the cleaners. Finally he comes in and asks, "What's taking so long? It's only one tallit!" The cleaner responds: "OK, it's finally finished. But don't you whine to me! Do you have any idea how long it took to undo all those knots at the bottom?"
The Ketubah

A ketubah is a Jewish marriage contract, setting out the terms and conditions of the marriage according to Jewish law. The ketubah must be signed by the couple and two witnesses.
Vietnamese Traditions

Áo Dài

Áo dài, which means 'long tunic' or 'long dress,' is Vietnam's national costume mostly worn by women. After several redesigns throughout history, it now consists of a form-fitting garment that emphasizes the woman's curves. White áo dài is worn as a standard uniform for female students. The more festive form of áo dài, as shown here, is modeled after áo mệnh phụ worn by royal women from the Nguyen dynasty. Royal áo dài is worn by Vietnamese brides, often with a silk cloak and a crown-like headgear. The one Marina will be wearing is provided by her family in Vietnam.

The Gift of Earrings

It is a Vietnamese tradition for the mother of the groom to present the bride with a set of earrings. The mother then puts the earrings on the bride during the ceremony to symbolize the welcoming of her into her new family. Some families consider the gift of earrings to be more important than the exchange of wedding bands.

Trầu Cau

Trầu Cau is a combination of fruit from the Betel tree and leaves from the Areca tree. Together, they play an important role in Vietnamese weddings as they symbolize the perfect union of two individuals bound together in love. This tradition follows from a folk tale, in which a husband is turned into an Areca tree. His wife, in despair, becomes a Betel plant that winds itself around the trunk of the Areca tree. There are several variations of this legend, such as this one and this other one.

Please click here for Mike's normal website.