Let us first start by saying, we absolutely adore this couple, and their families! The minute we met DJ & Stephen and their parents, we knew they all had a remarkable connection. Come to find out, we didn’t even know the half of it! So today we thought we would let bride, DJ, take over the reins to share her wedding day and explain the unique bond between their families. Take it away DJ!
DJ & Stephen’s Wedding Day- Saturday, August 25, 2012
How did we make our wedding us? Well our two families share a bond that I believe set our wedding apart. This is something that we wanted to make sure that everyone felt and I think it set us apart from other weddings we have been to. Stephen and I met in high school (we went to rival schools) when our two best friends started dating. He asked me to go to Homecoming with him and when we had to sign permission slips to go to the dance we found out that our parents had worked together for 20 years prior to us meeting!
Stephen and I continued to date on and off for the next eight years and our families connection with one another continued to get stronger. It is because of this unique connection between ourselves and our families that we wanted an intimate and loving atmosphere for everyone to be a part of on our wedding day.
We included pictures our both of our parents’ respective wedding day pictures as well as pictures of our grandparents who have passed away. Stephen’s best man was his little brother and my maid of honor was my sister. These were decisions that came easy because they truly are our best friends and biggest supporters. We also included a sign that said to “choose a seat and not a side” because “our two families become one.” This is what we wanted our guests to feel.
I was lucky that there were a lot of very sentimental moments of the wedding. Some of them included my sister’s matron of honor speech; it was so touching and beautiful and meant the world to me. She also embroidered three Irish handkerchiefs that I brought home from Ireland for my sister, my mother and myself. My dad placed an Irish penny in my shoe for good luck, which is also a tradition in our family. It was also special that Stephen’s mom was able to give Stephen her father’s cufflinks.
The First Look
The main reason why I am a proponent of a first look is because that interaction between bride and groom is so special and intimate; I wanted it to be captured and to have that moment in private. We found that the first look also helps to alleviate some of the anxiety that we had while saying our vows and to be more comfortable in front of our audience. I also loved that the first look allowed us to take a lot of our photos prior to the ceremony, which allowed us to jump right into spending time with our guests at the reception.
DJ’s Favorite Moment
I would say that my favorite moment of the wedding was the ceremony. It really felt like “us.” It was natural and beautiful. The scenery and the weather could not have been a better stage for us to say our vows.
The Blessing of a Tree
The reason we chose to bless a tree is because we wanted to do something different from the combining of sand or lighting a candle. Our officiant had this idea and he explained that a tree would be symbolic because it grows and changes just like our relationship will. My parents have built a beautiful house in Evergreen where we planted our tree. It will be special to keep it here where we can watch it grow and eventually our children might be able to climb it one day.
The Hand Tying Ceremony
The hand tying was another fantastic idea that we got from our officiant. We were telling him about our Irish heritage and that it is a commonality between our two families. Traditionally it was a Scottish tradition, in which a couple would have their hands tied for 6 months and if they still wanted to get married after being combined for so long, they could. We liked this tradition and it was symbolic for us so we decided to add it to the ceremony.
The Kissing Game
The Kissing Game is a twist on the ritual of the bride & groom kissing each time someone taps their glass. Prior to the wedding, we wrote down the names of all of the couples attending our wedding and placed them in a box. Whenever someone clinked their glass during the reception for Stephen and I to kiss, our DJ took out one of the names from the box and that couple had to kiss instead. Then Stephen and I had to imitate their kiss. This game helped to make sure everyone felt included and also encouraged them to have fun and be silly.
Congratulations DJ & Stephen! May you know nothing but happiness from this day forward.
Photography: Harper Point
Officiant: Reverend Brad Laurvick
Florist: Amore Fiore
Photobooth: Red Door Photo Booth
Cake: The Bundt Shoppe
Dress: Little White Dress
Venue: The Manor House
Categories: Featured Manor House Brides