Sealed with a kiss!

Sealed with a kiss!
Laura & Chris' Wedding at JCRaulston Arboretum

Thursday, January 18, 2018

A Gorgeous December Wedding for Alison and Daniel!

Alison and Daniel chose the historic Merrimon-Wynne House for their December 30th, 2017 wedding. They had great weather for their big day. It was my last wedding of 2017.
Greeting the guests by the front porch. 
When I arrived, our photographer, Ginny Corbett, had our couple on the side lawn for the first look which had taken place. I jumped in to get a photo with the guests. Alison's blush wedding gown was absolutely stunning!
Also stunning was her bouquet by Anna, owner of Meristem Floral
Ginny Corbett and her second shooter! They were good sports at allowing my husband, Dave, to take these photos for my blog. 
Ryan Pflumm owner of Spin DJ helps me put on the microphone he furnishes for me. Love working with Ryan!
The couple also asked me to make the "unplugged" announcement before the processional began. 
Pretty flowers and floating candles flank the aisle. The flames of the candles, although recessed in the glass containers, got a bit close for comfort to the clothing of one person sitting in the seat next to him as I watched him move them a bit further from his chair!
The alcove has been draped and lined with white lights and florals. 
Back inside the house, the photos of the couple are on the old fireplace mantle. 
Upstairs in the groom's room, the guys are playing bumper pool. 
The best man signs the license for me. 
Then the maid of honor does the same. 
I took this opportunity to sit down on the chaise and review the ceremony script. 
View of downtown Raleigh from the window behind the chaise lounge. 
The bride is getting a touch up on her hair and makeup by Joanne Maye. She admitted that she was feeling quite nervous about the ceremony and so I assured her that all would go well and she should just focus on Daniel during the ceremony. 
Daniel's hands were ice cold! He was equally nervous about the ceremony. They are both shy people and don't relish being up in front of people! He was telling me here how much he appreciated my calmness and assurance that all would go well--which it did, of course!
Ashley Cakes makes the most gorgeous wedding cakes! This one matches the bride's wedding gown!
Ryan has changed into his tux now and we are chatting about the ceremony. 
Making the unplugged announcement before the processional begins. 
Daniel's parents, Lynn and Lars, entered first.
Then father of the bride, Ed, escorts in the mother of the bride, Carol. He then circled back to bring in the bride!
Daniel entered and took his place beside me. Then his 4 groomsmen entered.
Then the 4 bridesmaids entered. 
Lynn Scott with Happily Ever After was in charge of this wedding and always does a spectacular job sending the wedding party in right on cue. Love working with her and her daughter Jessica.
Here comes the bride! 
Ed placed Alison's hand into Daniel's. Alison gave her father a little kiss then he carefully made his way to his seat without stepping on her dress as I invited the guests to be seated!
Some words of welcome to all our guests. Alison and Daniel relaxed, let their anxiety melt away and truly enjoyed their ceremony.
A surprise tribute to their parents was next. Then I got to tell Alison and Daniel's love story which began in downtown Raleigh almost 3 years ago. The attraction was immediate and soon blossomed into love. Neither of them was expecting to meet their future spouse when they did and had to rethink their futures!
At this point I am telling Alison what Daniel told me in confidence that he loves about her and what he is looking forward to in marriage. Then Daniel heard what Alison had told me in confidence.
They made their vows to each other then it was time for the ring exchange. 
They placed their rings on each other's fingers. 
A closing blessing followed. 
I was delighted to then pronounce them husband and wife and invited them to kiss! 
Now that was easy!!
I presented the newlywed couple to the guests as they stood and joined me in congratulating them. (Wish my photos were better but the light level was low and my little camera struggled.)
The wedding party followed the couple into the house for cocktail hour and since they had a done a "first look" before the ceremony, they were able to join their guests.
Inside the house I congratulated Alison and then Daniel. They both told me that they had been just fine during the ceremony because of my calming presence and because we had written the ceremony together and they loved hearing the words. So happy to hear that! 
Alison and Daniel, your wedding was spectacular. So happy you found each other and honored to have joined you in marriage. Congratulations and I wish you the best always!

Sunday, January 7, 2018

Kimble and Michael's Wedding in my Garden on a Chilly Winter Day!

Kimble and Michael did not want a courthouse wedding! So they contacted me and came to see my garden and decided that it would be perfect for their wedding. Then we all crossed our fingers for good weather. We were grateful for the clear skies and sunshine that day!
Of course the leaves were all gone from the deciduous trees but the camellias flanking the trellis are green year round. I have pink and white garlands to drape on the trellis so it looked quite festive for a December 29th, 2017 wedding.
Michael arrived first and we were going over the logistics and how happy we both were that despite it being 42 degrees, there was no wind and it was quite a nice day for an outdoor wedding.
The guests arrived and then Kimble began her walk on the path leading to the garden. 
Michael and I are watching her approach. 
Their photographer, Nicholas with Yirui Fan Photography, captures Kimble approaching.
I invited the guests to stand as she entered. 
Her friend helps straighten the train of Kimble's dress.
And so the ceremony began with a warm welcome to all for this wonderful occasion. 
A view of the wedding from the upper deck of my home.
Kimble did not seem the least bit cold. Funny how brides can just "numb out" heat and cold! 

"Out of all the people in the world, Kimble who is from Colorado, and Michael who is from Pennsylvania were blessed with the good fortune of finding one another right here in North Carolina to share their love and their lives. From the first time they met at Starbucks, they bonded very quickly, discovered they had a lot in common, and have been best friends ever since. They share an affinity for fine wine, funny comedians, good music, good friends and time together.  They have a lot of fun and always make each other laugh. There’s a chemistry, attraction, and comfort-level between them that neither has experienced before. The past few years were trying and difficult but since they met they have stuck together through the highs and lows of their new-found love. They are very much looking forward to starting their lives together officially, beginning with this day."  
Making their promises of marriage to each other.......
Michael places the rings on Kimble's finger.
Then Kimble put the ring on Michael's finger.
The pronouncement of marriage!!
Sealed with a kiss!!
The very happy couple. They tooks some photos after the ceremony while their witnesses were signing the marriage license for me. Then they were off to Winston's to celebrate!