Karmic Connection: Karen & Michel in Carlsbad, CA

As a little girl, writer Karen Grosso dreamed of getting married at her parents' summer home in Connecticut. And in August 2006, she did just that, exchanging vows with Michel Kripalani, a software executive, in front of their 20 closest reletives — all that could fit in the tiny beach house.

Karen is bedecked in jewels.

As a little girl, writer Karen Grosso dreamed of getting married at her parents' summer home in Connecticut. And in August 2006, she did just that, exchanging vows with Michel Kripalani, a software executive, in front of their 20 closest reletives — all that could fit in the tiny beach house.

Karen wears a bride's traditional golden bracelets.

To make it very different from their first (a lobster and clambake reception), the pair decided to have an Indian wedding, a tribute to Michel's deceased father, who was born and raised in India.

Dressed in Indian kurtas and saris at the couple's request, guests arrived on the October date and took their seats on decorative pillows in front of an altar with an elaborate mandap (canopy) that had been set up in the backyard.

"During the ceremony, Michel and I put our foreheads together and touched each other's chests as part of a prayer for the union of our hearts and minds. I think it was an intense moment for everyone because so many guest were talking about it later on."

The bride's niece, who just learned the prayer pose, shows off her know-how. The ladies of the bridal party all wore one-of-a-kind saris; Karen's was cream with maroon and gold embroidery.

The bride's nephew bears a lucky elephant.

Officiated by Reverend Tom Kelly of Soul of Yoga, the ceremony was a 50-minute version of the typical four-day event. Kelly performed a ritual that symbolized the "giving away" of the bride.

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