February 22, 2012

wedding wednesday: bridal party and ceremony

It's that time of the week again, Wedding Wednesday. Thanks for joining me. I hope you aren't too hungover, those of you that enjoyed Fat Tuesday festivities. Myself? Yeah I partied like an animal drinking water, eating a great dinner my husband prepared and watching Always Sunny reruns. I'm serious, I partied so hard I pinned over 50 items last night during and insomnia moment. I can't believe I'm not hurting this morning, I'm running on very little hours of quality sleep but yet, I'm still kicking.

Enough jibber jabber, let's get to the wedding ceremony goods.

As I may or may not have said before, our wedding was outside. The weather here in NW Alabama is very fickle, I really think the state slogan should officially be "If you don't like our weather, just wait 20 minutes." It changes on a dime. For weeks before the big day the weather was warm, Spring or perfect Autumn warm. The day before all my friends arrived the cold chill hit. It wasn't too bad mind you, I was happy for the relief, I wasn't looking forward to sweating through my make-up or while lugging my dress around. Why is it when you try on your wedding dress and you pick it that it never seems as heavy as it does during the first fitting, or the day you wear it?

After freezing most of the evening at the rehearsal dinner, I wasn't too worried about the ceremony. I knew I'd be anxious so being warm wouldn't be an issue.

Thankfully during the bridal party and family portraits our photographers scouted a perfect field, full of sunshine for us all to take photos. The ladies would be warm with their bare shoulders and the guys would be semi comfortable in their light colored suits. I wanted to share a few shots of the portraits it was a ball. Most of the girls were concerned and teasing me about having to walk into an open field - I reminded them to take it easy on me, A) I was the bride and B) I had already SAT down in the field in my ivory dress and survived to tell the tale. I was most concerned with Mike's sister's shoes. She was a trooper, walking in her Jimmy Choo's in the wilderness. I apologized and she told me not to worry one minute about it.

Sitting in the field, I know I looked unpleased but I was actually totally cool with this.
Especially since my photographer lent me her coat to sit on.

Me and my Father.

Our, HUGE wedding party.
I never once imagined I'd have such a large wedding party. Mike's family is very big and most of our party does make-up his brother's and sisters, as well as brother-in-law and nephew. I was really excited that we both had friends and family in the wedding that truly spanned most of our lives represented that day. I not only had dear friends I've known since middle school in my line up, but also dear friends I made in high school, college, my 20's and current close friends to both myself and Mike. Add to that my Junior Bridemaids, who are daughters to two of my maids and you have the second generation of friends. I call these girls my nieces. I also had Mike's sisters as well. I'm so happy to be a part of such a large family. We chose our Matron of Honor and Best Man according to not just friendship, but also to the fact that the two chosen were one of the main reasons Mike and I got together. If not for their help, I would have never met Mike. Two of our dear friends were not able to make it for the wedding My pal Lauren, who you all know as Salt, and our other friend R. Salt is expecting her first baby and was unsure about the trip, and R was called into work at the last minute - he's a cop, so we sort of couldn't argue that could we? They were both there in spirit and we hated not being able to party with them! Note: I allowed my girls to pick their own dresses - I asked they all be different, but 4 chose the same one!
what a massive and lovely bridal party, don't you think?
My favorite shots from the day are the candid ones. I like to call this shot our "Reservoir Dogs" shot.
Dear friend N, Best Man G, Brother J, the Groom, Brother J.O., Youngest Brother P, and Bro-in-law C
 My New Family
All of Mike's and now My, Brother's, Sisters, Nephews, new born Niece, Parents, Grandmother, and Brother-in-Law
 I love this picture of Mike and his siblings + his oldest nephew
How amazingly attractive is this family? I mean really?

One Final party shot after the ceremony - the resort is in the background

When planning our ceremony we wanted it to reflect our personalities. For years I've typed up wedding programs and I'm always typing the same songs, and readings over and over and over again. While I appreciate the classics and get butterflies when I hear the wedding march, I knew I didn't want that for our day and neither did Mike. We set out on a journey to find out how to make our music and ceremony our own. We originally asked the Best Man, who had joked for years about being an ordained minister to marry us. It had been the plan for years but faced with the actual situation made him nervous and worried. I can't say I blame him, can you imagine the pressure to marry your best friends and NOT screw it up? We quickly started to think and after much deliberation and thought we knew of one friend who is not only active in his church and responsible but a good friend if he would marry us. B jumped on the opportunity and I'm so thankful and pleased that he did. He took it seriously, as we hoped anyone in his situation would and he shined for sure! During all this Mike and I were formulating songs for our wedding and soon we figured out a list. Mike did scouting and much like his ability to find a DJ, and many other items on our to-do list for the wedding he found classically trained musicians through a friend of ours that played weddings. Through email he asked questions about music they like to play and prices. We met in person with the musicians, 2 who are part of a quartet. One a celloist and the other played violin. We brainstormed with them, and I brought them sheet music of the contemporary music we had in mind. The day they brought us back in to hear what they had worked on, I welled up not once but twice, maybe three times as they played. It was SO perfect and better than I could have ever dreamed.

Here is our ceremony, complete with music selections and pictures, enjoy!

Prelude - A Mix of Beatles Tunes
Ending with "Land of Imagination" 
from the Original Charlie and the Chocolate Factory Soundtrack

Groomsmen & Groom's Entrance
"Man of the Hour" - Pearl Jam
Mike and his Groomsmen entered from the right side of the ceremony space on the back patio from a long line of steps, I wish I could have seen this moment, but I was below him in the reception room, with my girls doing one ceremonial "Lemon Drop" shot before the big moment.

Seating of Mike's Mother & Grandmother
"Somewhere Over the Rainbow"
I picked this song, not just because it was beautiful, but also as sort of a tribute to my late mother. She and I were always obsessed with the Wizard of Oz and this song always makes me think of her. Mike's mom has been so wonderful to me, and so supportive like having a second mom, even before I was officially her daughter-in-law.

Wedding Party Processional
"To Make You Feel My Love" - Bob Dylan
Written by Bob, but played as preformed by Adele
Our EXTREMELY talented musicians - waiting their cue to play the bridal march.
Brides Processional
"Wild Horses" by The Rolling Stones

I have to say this song has always made me emotional, and thankfully on this day I didn't get welled up while walking. Mostly because my father and I laughed most of the time. Did I mention I had my seamstress cut my train off my dress... I didn't want to fuss with it!

 I am still floored at the amazing job my florist 
did turning that plain wooden stage into the work of art he did!

Our ceremony was amazing. I had written most of it with the help of the lovely internet, myself. I wanted to be sure that we not only discussed our love for each other but that we also thanked our parents and friends for teaching us what love truly was all about. Brian did a great job helping me edit the material and add his own blessings into the ceremony as well. He did a fantastic job as our minister. There was a little bit of a hicc-up at the beginning of the ceremony when my dad and I didn't realize it was time for him to be seated... so the jury is still out on whether or not my father and Mike may be hitched instead of us. 

All jokes aside it was amazing, quick but effective, tears were shed, smiles were shared and we were married on a cool fall day, outdoors, close to nature like I had always imagined we would be! Side note, B who married us, is engaged now! His date to the wedding is his new fiance, SO excited for them!!! We got cheers, hoots and hollas from all the boaters that were there that weekend as we sealed the deal with a kiss. The slip where all the yachts were parked were located right where the ceremony was held. At first it made me uncomfortable but there were lots of cheers.... and a surprise [see the last picture].

You may kiss your bride!!!

I know they say the first dance song is super important to a newly married couple but for me the song we heard walking back up the isle was just as, if not more important. I will forever remember the first song I heard as a married woman to be our wedding recessional.

Wedding Recessional
"You're My Best Friend" by Queen

As we walked back up the isle, one by one the boaters started blowing the horns on their yachts and hollering congratulations to us! I love that our second photographer Amy caught this moment! It's one of my favorite images of the day!

The ceremony was certainly one to remember for ever. I can't wait to see our video. We have seen the teaser and it was amazing. I will share that with you after a few more posts, I can't give away everything just yet.

I hope you enjoyed this! Next time... we'll discuss details of the big day! Happy Wednesday!

All photos taken by the lovely Breanna Fogg of Breanna Fogg Photography unless otherwise tagged/labeled.
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Carolyn said...

Oh I love this!!!!! These pictures are amazing!!! That group shot after the ceremony is SO GOOD!!! EEK! :) I love wedding photos! :)

Lisa Williams said...

oh wow! the pictures are beautiful but not as beautiful as the bride!!! what a great looking wedding you had!

Geezees Custom Canvas Art said...

Those wedding photos are stunning...i love the ones of you and your dad...so sweet! You are a beautiful bride!

Kelly @ Dare to be Domestic said...

Thank you all so much!!! I'm blushing over here. I couldn't have been more happy with my photographers not only were they friendly but they caught everything I could have ever wanted on film! We get our DVDs from the wedding today and I'm over the moon excited. Thank goodness for DVR... 30 Rock, Parks n' Rec and all our other fave Thursday shows may have to wait.

Kathryn said...

Ah! I have so much to say! First of all, that's a pretty damn good photographer to let you sit on her coat! And your wedding party is seriously huge- that must have been a lot of fun, though- tons of people to have your back during the ceremony. LOVE the photos and also love your song choices. "Wild Horses" also makes me weep like a baby, so I wouldn't have been able to walk down the aisle smiling. And I adore the arch you guys had- very rustic but still beautiful!

Mary Ann said...

What a gorgeous wedding! I love the men's green ties. ;-)

jessalyn said...

ok, so seriously, love it all. and you know how we are always all "we have so much in common"? yeah, make you feel my love by adele was our first dance. and i bet as you reveal more, i will find even more similarities.

you are gorgeous!

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