Sealed with a kiss!

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

Saturday, January 7, 2012

A Sunny Warm January Wedding for Emily and Daniel!

I met Emily and Daniel last June. At the time, they were living in the western part of North Carolina at a university where Daniel performed as a percussionist in the orchestra and Emily an actress in theater productions. Daniel told me that he remembers after every performance for the past 4 years, Emily would come down into the orchestra pit and thank all the musicians. He always looked forward to that special moment but Emily did not remember any individual musicians until the theater group went on tour to the Roanoke Island Festival Park to do several musicals in 2010. It was then that Daniel caught her eye! She noticed that Daniel was always around helping unload the sets, costumes and instruments and came up to thank him. After this, she began to notice him frequenty and soon they were spending more and more time with each other. At some point they became a couple and eventually decided to marry. Since then they have moved to a small town outside of Elizabeth City where Daniel teaches college and it was from there they planned their wedding in the Triangle because Emily grew up in Durham. They chose the historic All Saints Chapel with its warm dark wood trimmed interior and roomy chapel. It is a wonderful setting for weddings and especially charmed Emily whose creativity in designing the ceremony was evident. She grew up in the Baptist Church and Daniel is from Michigan where he grew up Catholic. So they had a traditional structured ceremony with both traditional elements like the Unity Candle and the non-traditional like Handfasting.
When Marty and I arrived for the wedding on January 7, 2012, the bride, bridesmaids and man of honor were outside having photos done by Neil Boyd, their photographer. It was an unseasonable warm and sunny day!
Inside, the chapel was ready to go. 100 chairs had been removed from the 250 that were there during our rehearsal the night before for a wedding that evening. Sarah told me it was the largest wedding they have ever had there.
There were hanging candles on stands along the aisle and lots of floating and votive candles on the altar including a unique Unity Candle holder in the center. Baby's Breath made a wispy and frilly floral spray for the center. The florist responsible was Flowers by Design.
Neil in action as the light streams in the windows on the south side of the chapel as the  processional begins.
After the rest of the wedding party and parents and grandparents entered, our flower girl, Grace, and the ring bearer, Dylan, made their way down the aisle. They were so cute and did their jobs perfectly! The lady in the magenta dress behind them is Lisa, friend of the mother of the bride, who was our wedding director. Thanks, Lisa, you did great!
Then it was time for the bride. Her father, Craig, proudly escorts her in. She is carrying a lovely bouquet with very special meaning with the couple's hope that these meanings will translate to their new adventure of married life. The Myrtle is for love; Ivy for friendship; Holly for domestic happiness; Stock for bonds of affection; Stephanotis for marital bliss; Statice for loyalty; and Baby's Breath for happiness. Sounds good to me! Emily is also wearing a gorgeous gown. The long sleeved lacy bolero jacket can be removed and the strapless bodice underneath is lovely. Emily also made her very fashionable "fascinator" headpiece and flower. Who would have guessed. She looked so pretty and her wedding dress and hat implied "vintage" which fit the ambience of the chapel so well.
I believe Emily has the tiniest waist I have ever seen! Her train was beautiful as it flowed behind her.
After the Welcome, the Invocation and the Presentation of the Bride, Emily and Daniel stepped up onto the altar for the rest of the ceremony.
The guests were invited to stand and sing the Doxology together then we remembered those not with us and then two special readings. Emily's sister, Kaitlin, read one of my favorite poems about two trees whose branches and roots become so intertwined that many see only one tree. Author is unknown. Then Daniel's sister, Lori, read an excerpt from Anne Morrow Lindbergh's "Gift From the Sea."
After the Prayer and Charge to the Couple, it was time for the Blessing of the Hands and the Handfasting ritual in which the couple's left hands are bound by a cord the couple made symbolizing the intertwining of their lives and the lives they have chosen to lead together.
 Then they said their vows to each other. 
The cord was then removed and they exchanged rings which symbolically replaced the cords.
The Unity Candle was next and they joined their candles to form the new and greater flame of their marriage made up of their unique individual expressions of light continually sustained and renewed by their connection to the eternal and inexhaustible Light of the universe.
During the light of the candle, "Morning Has Broken" was sung by a trio of bridesmaids, including Daniel's sister, Christina, who has a beautiful voice. A very special moment for their family!
 After a prayer for the couple, the pronouncement was made followed by......
What very happy people you are, Emily and Daniel! Congratulations! I am so happy for you and I wish you all the happiness in the world! And have a wonderful honeymoon to the tropics!

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