Originally Posted by murmel
I think you just have to get in the mindset that the legal one (done there or at home) is just that legal piece of paper you need. Then make the symbolic ceremony YOUR wedding. It is here that you say the vows and things to each other that really matter, and will be surrounded by family and friends. You also sign a certificate, so even though it's not legal- you are still getting married that day, on the beach! Then you choose what day you celebrate your anniversary on.
My husband and I got married legally in Canada, by a judge in front of my mom in her nursing home(due to her condition she can't travel-nor does she remember half the time that I'm her daughter, let alone married). We really didn't make it a big deal, just a legal step that we had to do. And that was on Dec 4.
But to us, our wedding was in Mexico on Jan 24, surrounded by all of our guests and dressed in our wedding attire. That's our wedding day, and our anniversary! We made that the magically day we had always dreamt of. Hope that story helps!
Like murmel, we also did a very quick "legal thing" in Canada before leaving for Mexico. That event barely registers for us because it was just a check on the things to do list before actually being "married." This didn't make our wedding any less special. We will always celebrate our anniversary on the day we got married in Mexico and exchanged our true heartfelt vows to one another.