I’m a Father-in-Law!

I’ll diverge from my normal estate planning column to get sentimental. Many of you who’ve read my column over the two decades plus that I’ve been writing it have followed my family musings.

Over the Independence Day Weekend in Asheville, North Carolina, my eldest daughter Gabrielle married her long-time boyfriend/fiancé Benji Bernstein. Benji’s been like a son to Patti and me for quite some time. The married couple met while attending Brandeis and have been together ever since.

Benji is a fantastic young man. He always has a smile on his face and radiates a positive energy everywhere he goes. The groomsmen and best-men toasts (he has two younger brothers) reflected his effervescent attitude. He’s the perfect complement to my eldest daughter, who is detail oriented and focused.

I have no idea where she got that from!

Gabi’s two sisters, Courtney and Madison, served as co-maids-of-honor and performed a cute poem for their toast to their sister and new brother-in-law. Between their toasts and the others, let’s say I learned a few things about Gabi that I didn’t know before! Even though she’s nearly 28 years old, when I look at her, I still see a cute little five-year-old version of her. This weekend opened my eyes to the confident, beautiful, exceptional young woman that she’s become.

The venue was on a farm on the outskirts of town that serves as an event center. The groomsmen had a separate cabin from the bridesmaids as we prepared for the ceremony. That’s when I discovered that I brought the wrong suit-pants! The photographer is in the cabin taking pictures of us guys getting ready and the father of the bride had to hide behind my father (my kids and Benji refer to him as Papa Joel) and others so the pictures wouldn’t reveal my boxer-briefs! Luckily, my daughter Courtney’s boyfriend Phil drove back to our townhome to retrieve them.

A wedding can’t go off without a hitch, of course, and my pants mishap was minor compared to the rain that engulfed the area, causing us to move the ceremony to under a tent as opposed to having it out in the beautiful flower garden. The rabbi, who was the same rabbi who presided over Benji’s Bar Mitzvah sixteen years ago, did a remarkable job. The ceremony was meaningful, touching, funny, and spiritual.

Gabi and Benji exchanged the most meaningful and beautiful vows that I’ve ever heard (perhaps I’m a bit biased), but the two majored in anthropology and philosophy respectively, so I wasn’t surprised. The band was outstanding. I heard that the food and desserts were excellent, but I don’t know if that’s everyone being polite or not, as I didn’t get a chance to taste much of anything, as I was circulating amongst our friends and dancing (the terrible white-man’s jig that I do).

Aside from being a proud papa and now father-in-law, I couldn’t be more pleased with our families. Patti and I feel that we gained a whole new branch as the Bernstein and Hersch clans share a lot of similarities and get along famously. There’s not better feeling than that.

The bride and groom are off on their honeymoon now, while Patti and I recover from the weekend. Like all big events the lead up seemed so long, and then – in a flash – it’s all over!

Next week I’ll return to estate planning here. I’m sorry if I bored you. I’m relaxing in the mountains for a spell then I’ll get right back to it!

©2022 Craig R. Hersch – Sheppard Law Firm. Learn more at floridaestateplanning.com

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