Sealed with a kiss!

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

Sunday, December 4, 2016

Sarah and Chad Get Married While Hurricane Matthew Brews Outside!

Sarah and Chad live in DC but planned their wedding in Durham at Bay 7 on October 8th, 2016. They met at Duke and wanted to come back where it all started. Little did they know then that a hurricane would be blowing through the Triangle! However, this did not put a damper on their wedding whatsoever. All the guests managed to get there, the venue was running full steam and my friend Sherri who was taking photos for me and I made it from a wedding in Cary to Bay 7 in plenty of time. We were practically the only car on the road that afternoon! 
 Our musicians from Arioso Strings are safe and dry inside and tuning up. 
 The ceremony area was set up and the table with the box for the wine and loveletters were in place. 
 Their loveletters written and sealed without sharing to be opened on their anniversary over a glass of wine.
Fresh Affairs was their florist and had brought in the floating candles which cast a warm glow in front of the drapes and hanging greenery.
 Brian Mullins, our fabulous photographer, requested that I stand in a certain spot during the wedding so he could get the best lighting possible on our couple. It is a challenge to shoot the ceremony upstairs on the mezzanine of Bay 7 without using flash for every shot. That is why the photos of the ceremony on this blog are so dark and blurry. My point and shoot camera with a flash that extends only 8 feet is not really adequate. But, it works in most other situations and that's what I have!
Downstairs the reception area is all set up. Bay 7 is such a great venue and it is managed by Angus Barn so you know the service and food are the best! Our Wedding Director, Sarah Lilly, with Angus Barn was overseeing all the logistics and doing a wonderful job!
 The head table is all decked out with special table cloth, floating candles and red florals. 
 A view from the head table toward the deck outside. No one of course was outside on this day! 
I don't know who made the "wedding cake" and desserts but they do look delicious! Maybe Angus Barn did. They can make anything!
Smiling for the camera with DJ Jason with Stylus. We do a lot of weddings together and it was good to see Jason for this one.
  More candles and fall hydrangeas for centerpieces.
 Our Flower Girl, Annabel, is ready for the ceremony to begin! 
Jeff Ellis with Bunn DJ Company was providing amplification for me. It is unusual that there are two different DJ companies in one wedding. But it mattered not to me. Jeff plugged my microphone into his portable system and we did a sound check and were good to go. Thank you, Jeff!
 Soon it was time for the ceremony so Chad and his groomsmen and I entered from the side to take our places. 
Chad's grandmother was escorted in by his sisters and seated. Then the parents. Above is Sarah's father, Jeff, and her stepmother, Mary Ruth. Jeff circled back to escort our bride.
 The bridesmaids entered next and I don't have photos of them all. 
 Thomas, our ring bearer, made his way down the aisle followed by Annabel and they were seated. 
Time for our beautiful bride! Her father really enjoyed escorting his beautiful daughter down the aisle as everyone stood in her honor.
 "Who presents Sarah to be married to Chad?" 
After the transfer of hands they turned and faced each other and we thanked everyone for traveling near and far to be with us.
 We remembered those no longer with us and then we paid tribute to the couple's parents. 
Chad and Sarah met their freshman year at Duke in 2006. They lived in the same dorm and ate in the same dining hall. They met through mutual friends and were friends for about 1½ years before dating. They graduated and eventually both of them ended up with jobs in DC where they still live.  Chad proposed in June of 2015 and they began planning this wedding.
Sarah is hearing for the first time what Chad told me in confidence he loves about her, why he wants to marry her and what he is looking forward to in marriage.
 Then Chad gets to hear what Sarah told me about him! Tender moments!
The vows and rings came next. Then I asked them to place their loveletters in the box with the wine and seal it and not open it until their first anniversary at which time they write a new letter and seal it to be opened not he subsequent anniversary and repeat every year. That way on their 50th anniversary they will have a lifetime of love letters to share with their children, grandchildren and maybe even great grandchildren! A beautiful legacy of love.
Missed getting a photo of the pronouncement and kiss but here I am presenting the newlyweds to their guests as they cheer them on!
Thomas and Annabel follow the bride and groom out then the wedding party and parents. The guests were invited downstairs for cocktail hour to be followed by the reception, dancing and much merry-making!
Chad and Sarah, your wedding was wonderful despite the inclement weather. Thank you for choosing me to join you in marriage. It was an honor. You are a great couple and I know you will have a lifetime of happiness. I wish the best for you always. 

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