Korean Wedding – Paebaek

Continued from yesterday’s post…

A traditional Korean wedding ceremony, or paebaek, followed the actual ceremony.

The bride and groom bow to their elders, who are sitting at a low table covered with foods such as dried fruit and chestnuts.

They share tea and are given blessings and advice for their future.

The parents toss dates and chestnuts into a cloth the couple holds. The dates represent how many girls the couple will have and the chestnuts are for boy babies.

Other elders are honored with bows and give their blessings to the couple:

The groom carries his mother and then his wife on his back to symbolize his willingness to support both of them.

More photos tomorrow…

The Wedding


The bride and groomImage

My dad gave the benedictory prayer.Image

It was the perfect day for a wedding in beautiful Belvedere. I love how happy the new couple looks in this photo as they leave the church.Image

The cutie-pie ringbearer with his dad, my cousin.Image

It was great to see so many of my dear cousins. Image

That’s my sister in the middle!


I’ve got a zillion cousins…Image

…and aunts. The aunt to the left of my mother is the mother of the groom. See my mother’s sister on the right? The delicate and distinguished lady in the grey hanbok with the freakishly large camera apparatus? We had knock-down drag-out beat downs all night long for camera angles. (It was no contest. She won every time, of course. Every. Single. Time.).


The mother of the groom wears a blue hanbok. The mother of the bride wears pink.Image

And now for the “pae baek,” the traditional Korean wedding ceremony…The couple offers tea or wine and chestnuts and dates to their elders. Image

The elders offer their blessings and impart words of wisdom. They also slip them wads of cash in little white envelopes!Image

The elders throw chestnuts and dates and the couple tries to catch as many as they can in a cloth. The chestnuts represent the boys and the dates represent the girls they’ll have. The bride caught 15 chestnuts and 8 dates. I heard a Korean ajumma say, “You better get busy!!!”Image

Another set of elders (the uncles and aunties) take their turn. They receive their bow.Image

My mom tells them, “Don’t fight…And just have two boys and two girls.”(Really? Is that all)?!Image

The couple shares a drink…Image

and a date!Image

The groom gives the bride a piggyback ride around the table. (There’s my auntie with her gigantic camera)! Sometimes the groom will also give a piggyback ride to his mother and maybe even his grandmother as a symbol that he will be responsible for all of them. Image

The wooden ducks on the table represent faithfulness, because ducks mate for life.ImageImage

My little nephews hung out with my cousin’s son during the cocktail hour:


My niece and my mom…

And then it was time for the reception:


My nephew “R”:  “Call me!”


Korean wedding buffet. Kimchi, jap jae, sushi, rice…Image


It was lovely.