Sealed with a kiss!

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

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Carolyn and Daryl's Sunset Wedding at the NC Museum of Art!

Daryl called me in July to see if I was available to officiate his and Carolyn's wedding ceremony on October 23, 2010 at the new facility of the North Carolina Museum of Art on Blue Ridge Road, just down the street from the fairgrounds. Daryl had been given my name by Morgan Greer, the events coordinator at the museum.  I was thrilled that I was available and would have my first chance to do a wedding at the new museum. How exciting. It is such a beautiful place and I was curious just where the ceremony would be outside which I found out at the rehearsal the day before.
On that beautiful Saturday afternoon, Marty and I traveled from Brier Creek Country Club where we had just done a wedding at 4:00. I was concerned about getting there in time to set up my sound system and be ready to go by 6:00 when the ceremony was supposed to start. So, we purposely went down Highway 70/Glenwood Avenue to avoid the State Fair traffic on I-40 known to be quite heavy on the last weekend of the fair. I turned right onto Duraleigh Road and we were sailing along until we came to an absolute stand still where Duraleigh and Blue Ridge intersected. Knowing all the back roads, I cut down Blue Ridge towards Crabtree then swung around on Morningside to Lake Boone Trail onto I-440 beltline south. The left lanes were clogged with fair traffic exiting at Hillsborough but we just zoomed right by them and exited onto Wade Avenue westbound and took the first exit for Blue Ridge Road were the only ones going the opposite way from the fair traffic and made it in plenty of time to spare. Whew! When we arrived, we found this beautiful wedding cake by Sweet Memories inside the new museum. Of course the Museum restaurant staff with their fine chefs catered the reception so I know it was delicious!
The table for the sand ceremony had been set up in front of the big statue to the left of the main entrance to the museum flanked by the pedestals of flowers. Don't know who the florist was but they were lovely. Notice how long the shadows are. It was getting late in the day.
Ed Stephenson and his Paco Band set up inside for the reception then Ed and one of his fellow guitarists set up outside to provide music for the ceremony.
This is the view from the "altar" area. So very pretty. The guests were beginning to gather and about 5:45, I asked the groomsmen to start seating the guests. Little did they know that our photographer, John Rodgers, had yet to arrive. He had left the Sheraton Hotel downtown an hour or so earlier and was stuck in the fair traffic. Daryl was in phone contact with him but apparently John had little choice but to inch along with the fair goers! So we waited and waited. I finally announced to the guests at 6:15 that Daryl was not being stood up by Carolyn, but that we were waiting for the photographer to arrive. He finally got there at 6:30 and we were so happy to see him that the guests and wedding party all applauded! Poor John, it was not his fault. We knew some guests were in the same predicament by the number of empty chairs.The best laid plans......
So, we began. John is getting a shot of our line up right before the seating of Daryl's parents. Rebecca Dunn, our wedding director with Events by La Fete, is on the right and cued us all in.
The guys and I went in next closely followed by Daryl and his son, Jake, and the groomsmen.
Here come the bridesmaids. I was so grateful to the Museum for providing this soft spongy runner for us to walk on as gravel can be difficult, especially in heels. Thanks, Morgan, a great idea!
Our flower girls sprinkled the petals right before Carolyn was escorted in by her mother, Heather. Wish I had a photo of them.
It is time for the bride to come in as I turned around to cue Ed to start that music.
Isn't this a beautiful setting for a wedding? Quite unique too. Note that the lights inside the museum are showing. It is getting dark. I have lightened these photos quite a bit. 
Carolyn and Daryl's friend, Lauren, read to us a beautiful reading about two trees.
After the couple's "love story," the vows and ring exchange, it was time for the family unity sand ceremony. You can see Carolyn and Daryl pouring their sand in after Jake had poured his in. It is really quite dark at this point. Notice that the up-lighting of the trees is really visible.
We got through the ceremony just fine with enough light for me to read by and for Marty to get a few good photos with my simple little camera. Maybe John will send me some of his which are bound to be a whole lot better! After the ceremony Marty and I packed up my sound system and by then it was really dark and Carolyn and Daryl had gone off with John for more pictures and were nowhere to be found. Consequently I did not get the customary photo of the couple and me together. Nor did I get to congratulate them in person as I had to dash off to another event for which I was late! (It was not a wedding though!) All in all, it was a fabulous wedding and the most important thing is that they got married and are sure to live happily ever after if Jake has anything to say about it! Congratulations, Carolyn and Daryl, and Jake!

Beautiful Fall Wedding for Lori and MIke at Brier Creek Country Club!

Last April Lori and Mike came to see me about officiating their wedding on October 23, 2010 at Brier Creek Country Club. They are a vivacious and fun couple and were intrigued with the concept of creating their own wedding ceremony. They booked me right away and with the tons of ceremony material I emailed them, they began putting together what they wanted me to say in their ceremony. In the meantime, they both answered 5 questions for me about their relationship and I melded their answers together for their "story" to include in the ceremony. They gave me lots of good material with some humor added in which I loved! 

When it was time for the ceremony to begin, our honorary wedding director, Elly, a friend who teaches with Lori, cued in the parents and wedding party. Last but not least were our two flower girls. Thankfully, one was older and could lead the younger one down the aisle although they almost veered off!
Then it was time for Kirk, brother of the bride, to escort Lori in. She looked so radiant and happy but also regretted that her father who had passed away earlier this year would not be escorting her in.
All the guests stand for our bride and her brother. He passed her hand to Mike and took his place in the line up of groomsmen. They had quite a few attendants: 7 bridesmaids and 7 groomsmen, 5 junior bridesmaids, 2 junior groomsmen and the 2 flower girls. Once Kirk transferred his sister's hand to Mike, the young people were seated along with the guests.
The bridesmaids wore the prettiest dresses in a wine/cranberry color with sheer black stoles. Their bouquets were gorgeous. Lori told me that the flowers were not exactly the colors she ordered but she really liked them anyway and they really complimented the dresses and fit in with the fall color theme. Fresh Affairs did the flowers and you can count on them to be beautiful.
We had 3 readings and 3 readers. The first reading was Owl Sight by Mercedes Lackey and Larry Dixon presented by Mike's sister, Maria, in photo above.
The second reading was a poem by Roy Croft called "To My Friend" and was read by Carmella, also Mike's sister. The third reading was "An Old Wedding Blessing," author anonymous, read by Tyrone, a friend of the couple. Unfortunately I don't have a photo of Tyron reading.
Then it was time for the wedding address which included Lori and Mike's story. Everyone enjoyed hearing it, especially Lori and Mike!
In the meantime, unknown to me at the time, the littlest flower girl, Bridget, was entertaining herself quietly with the flower petals. Looks like she may have been tasting them!
It is time for the vows and the rings to be exchanged. Mike first.
 Then Lori.
 And now the pronouncement.........
Mike really gave Lori a big smackaroo! I think they had been practicing!
It's done! They are now married! They led the wedding party to a place hidden from the guests then I sent the guests to the terrace for cocktails while we got some photos.
 Wishing the new Mrs. congratulations along with everyone else. 
Lori was saying how wonderful she thought her wedding ceremony went. 
Before Marty and I dashed off to the next wedding, we got this shot of me with the newlyweds. I wish you all the best life has to offer, Lori and Mike! 

Our Vendors:

Brier Creek Country Club: wonderful garden setting for a wedding. Love doing weddings here. 
Greg Ramsey, DJ with Joe Bunn DJ Company, provided the ceremony music. Always enjoy working with Greg. 
Diane McKinney was our photographer and it was good to see her again and work another wedding together. She brought her assistant Kristen. Thanks, gals!
Fresh Affairs always does a fantastic job on the florals!  Thanks, Lynn.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Stephanie and Joshua Marry in Kayelily's Garden!

After the wedding at All Saint's Chapel at 11:30AM on October 23, 2010, Marty and I traveled back to my home for Stephanie and Josh's wedding in my wedding garden.
I had never seen a runner like this. It was made out of vinyl and so it stayed in place although we did not walk on it. It was too pretty to walk on! It was made by VistaPrint. I did not know they made these. They also had made some lovely programs for their guests.
Josh and Stephanie were so excited to get married and invited their families and closest friends. They were honored to have their mothers and Stephanie's father with them. In the ceremony we remembered Josh's father who has passed on from this earth . Stephanie's sister, Andrea, was the Matron of Honor and Supreme, a friend of the couple, served as best man. Sedrick Miles was their photographer.
Stephanie and Josh are expecting their first child, Xavier Elias, in March and asked if we could have a baby blessing within the wedding ceremony. This is something I have done many times before and is so touching! They also included a family unity sand ceremony in which we poured sand for the baby.

Josh is a natural for a model. He is so good looking and knew just how to pose in all the photos. Stephanie is so pretty and stylish in her beautiful dress and cute veil which is so popular these days. Stephanie and Josh, congratulations and go forth in love, peace and joy!

Kimberly and Timothy's Wedding at All Saint's Chapel!

Kimberly and Timothy waited a long time to find that special someone and when they did, they were inseparable. In fact, their wedding day was exactly 4 years after they met, to the day.
Timothy wanted a traditional wedding ceremony but Kimberly not so much. So together we created a ceremony  that combined both styles. Kimberly was escorted in by her father where Timothy was waiting for her. Then the couple stepped together up the steps to join me on the altar symbolizing taking their relationship to greater heights together.
After welcoming everyone, we began with a prayer followed by asking all their guests to give their blessing and support to their marriage.
A tribute and thank you to their parents followed by a reading of First Corinthians by our Maid of Honor, Pam.
Then on a lighter note, Dean, our best man, presented a poem by Anonymous titled: "He Never Leaves the Toilet Seat Up."
I told the story of how Kimberly and Timothy met, fell in love and what they look forward to in marriage, then the vows and ring exchange. They represent another successful love story thanks to e-Harmony!
 The declaration of marriage was made and then the guests read in unison The Irish Blessing for the couple which was printed in their very beautiful programs made by Kimberly.
 Of course, the kiss was next with much jubilation!
Here they are, the newlywed couple!
Down the aisle to the beginning of their new life together as a married couple.
Tim is especially happy that the ceremony is over! He was a bit nervous but Kimberly was cool as a cucumber! They balance each other. All went very smoothly and, Kim and Tim, I trust your marriage will go as smoothly! I wish you all the best!

Our Vendors: 
All Saint's Chapel: A great place to get married if you want a church setting. I love doing weddings here. Sarah Morris, the events coordinator for the chapel, was on hand to make sure everything was running smoothly.
Priscilla Erwin with Orangerie Events was our wedding director. Thanks, Priscilla.
Kelly Martin was our photographer. Kelly and I have worked together many times. Thanks Kelly!
John McHugh filled the chapel with the lilting Celtic music of the Uilleann Pipes and tin whistles. He is great! You get the same effect as a bagpipe without the screaming volume suitable only for outdoors!

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Kristen and Seth Have a Wonderful Wedding at Caffe Luna!

I met Kristen and Seth in August about officiating their wedding at Caffe Luna on Sunday October 17, 2010. They are a wonderful couple who wanted a simple wedding, no frills, and a fun celebration of their love for their families and friends. They met in school in Ohio in 2003. Seth works in DC now and Kristen is pursuing a doctorate in epidemiology here in NC. Their long distance relationship the last few years has stood the test of time and they were eager to commit to each other in marriage. His family came from Texas for the wedding, and Kristen's family from Virginia. By the time we were ready to start, the front room of Caffe Luna was packed. I don't think I have ever seen so many guests there and every chair was occupied--and everyone was on time~amazing! 
The music for the ceremony and the reception was provided by Randy Bennett of Joe Bunn DJ Company whom Marty and I had just seen the day before at the Angus Barn wedding. Hi again, Randy! He is so sweet and easily connects my microphone into his system.
Look at this amazing cake by Cinda's Creative Cakes with the eggs on top labeled Kristen and Seth. I have never seen this before. How unique!

Kristen and Seth decided to see each other before the ceremony so they could expedite the photos and spend more time with their guests after the ceremony. So, we snapped a few pre-ceremony pictures here.
They did not seem nervous at all. They were on time and there was no last minute rush as they are both quite organized people! These pretty flowers are from Daniel's Florist.
So when their guests were seated, we started right on time. This is Kathryn, one of Kristen's two maids of honor.
This is Rachel, maid of honor #2!
Seth and I, followed by his two groomsmen, Clay and Kevin, entered from the front of the restaurant. Everyone is waiting for the bride, can you tell? This photo was snapped right before I had them all stand.
Kristen and her dad, David, entered and floated down the long aisle.
Taking good photos is difficult in this configuration because there is only the center aisle and my little camera's flash will not reach all the way.
This is a surprise photo of Cara, our photographer with F8 Studios. She turned around just as Marty snapped the photo!
Another happily married couple are on their way to their new lives together! Kristen and Seth, congratulations and I wish you the best of everything forever!

(Yea, I am finally caught up with my blogging! Next weekend will set me back again because I have 5 weddings booked, then 5 more Halloween weekend. I will be glad to catch my breath in November!)