Christian and I had a very small wedding. Small like only 6 other people besides the two of us: our parents, the pastor, and the photographer. Originally, we’d planned on eloping and getting married just the two of us on a beach in San Diego (Fletcher Cove, to be exact), but that was until we found out Fletcher Cove didn’t allow weddings on the beach, not to mention- our mothers guilt-tripped us into inviting them 😉 Then we thought about having a small wedding on a beach in Florida, but trying to plan even a small wedding out of state, having just moved cross country twice (not to mention the financial recouping we were doing) – the stress was a bit much. My parents asked if I might like to have it at their house in Indiana (the house I grew up in). I’d never thought of that before. They live out in the country, with beautiful trees and flowers all around. Not to mention the location obviously held a special place in my life. I loved the idea of having it in a place that would be completely private with full control of the “venue.” 🙂 It’s so quiet and peaceful out there, and the more I thought about it, the more I loved the idea. And so, that’s what we did.
The months and days leading up to the actual day were so much fun. We had fun planning the details and there was never a moment I felt stressed. We took a few trips to Indiana to meet with a caterer, our photographer, and to get our marriage license, but for the most part I could just do everything from Chicago.
For Christian’s wedding band, we actually ended up getting it from a ring show in Chicago. It took him all of 5 minutes to pick out the one he wanted – and it was only $40. (Oh yeah!) We were so excited, we did high jumps in the parking lot. (Until I pulled something in my shoulder and we had to stop.) (And in my defense, I was wearing heels, so…)
A couple nights before our big day, X took me to see Michael Bolton in concert. (Yes, I know what you’re thinking. I have the most amazing man in the world to take me to my 239852 MB concert, let alone our 3rd one together.) The rest of the time was spent with my parents and brother, along with Christian as we ran errands after errands getting things ready. Those were some of my most favorite memories of all the planning that went into our special day. Nothing felt crazed, we took our time, we spent hours in places like Hobby Lobby and Lowes, collecting last minute things like flowers and lantern & twinkle lights. (Highlight of one of these errands was when Christian and my Dad went to Michaels by themselves and were mistaken as a couple. Lots of laughs over that one!) After all of the errands were done each day, we sat back and enjoyed grilling out and dinners out together. Those were some really fun few days.
The day of the wedding, my mom and I shared a little coffee date together at Starbucks early in the morning and then went to a spa to get a pedicure, manicure, and our makeup & hair done. It was totally a girly morning and nothing about it felt stressful – it was just about enjoying our time together and getting so excited for the rest of the day – it was my wedding day!
My dad and Christian spent the morning putting out palm trees and flowers, and hanging lights over the back deck. I didn’t know they were doing this until I came home and seeing all of their hard work in the beautiful details was so sweet and special! (And super cute that they did that together.) Christian’s parents soon joined us and all was ready for our little big day.
Instead of the “unity candle” we switched it up a bit and changed it to some “unity sand.” My childhood friend (who had since moved to San Diego) went to Fletcher Cove, collected sand from our favorite spot, and mailed it back to me so that we could still have that place be a part of our special day.
It was the most beautiful day and I’m so glad we didn’t elope – it was so important to have our parents there to celebrate with us! We wrote our own vows (not a dry eye!), said I Do, kissed and then celebrated with our 6 guests for the rest of the evening in the dining room I grew up having so many celebrations in 🙂
It really was so special to have had our wedding take place in the home and woods I grew up in for half my life. I love that I can look at all of our pictures and know so well what the surroundings look like.
We drank margaritas and ate the most amazing food that my parents had catered in. We listened to hawaiian music and even had our own little wedding cake. We told stories, shared our favorite moments of the day, laughed and cried, and I’ll tell you what- that evening was truly a “snapshots of the soul” kind of evening.
At one point, my dad said to me, “Em, you guys should dance! You know, like the traditional first dance!” So Christian and I went to my parents formal living room – just the two of us – and danced. I couldn’t tell you what song we danced to but I do know it was slow and it was good. It wasn’t “our song” but it was our day. Our moment. And for two people who’d sworn we’d never get married- we sure had come a long way.
I love our story, the whole thing. I love it because it’s real and it’s ours. But most of all, I love our story because it’s one that’s ongoing. There is no “The End” – only a “To Be Continued.” And those are the best kinds.
Dress: I purchased the very last one available of a discontinued dress at… (are you ready for this??) David’s Bridal. Never in a million years did I see myself buying my wedding dress from David’s Bridal, but I really fell in love with this dress. And since it was on sale from being the last one, I paid $200.
Flowers: I had my bouquet made by the amazing Gina Louisa Designs. It’s a crazy story as to how I met this dear person (long story short, I met her through work) but I LOVED that she creates with silk flowers. (Oh yeah, those flowers are fake! But you can’t tell, can you?!) I was so in love with the idea of being able to keep my wedding bouquet years after the actual event. It’s currently sitting in a vase in my office 🙂
All of the other flowers were picked up by my dad and brother from our local grocery store flower shop – is that not the sweetest? My dad knows me pretty well when it comes to my taste in flowers and colors and I think he did a perfect job. Our table was beautifully decorated.
Food: Catered by Sweet and Savory. Our food was to die for!
Cake: Lemon cake with buttercream frosting (amazing!), made by my all time favorite cake shop, Classic Cakes. Hands down, best cake I’ve ever had.
Photographer: All professional wedding photos were taken by the unbelievably talented photographer (and friend!), Lane Lewis out of Indianapolis. (She is also in Louisville quite often and will travel, FYI!)
(If you’re wondering about our honeymoon, we celebrated that one year later in Maui. You can read more about that here.)
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