Sealed with a kiss!

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

Sunday, February 15, 2015

Valentine's Day Wedding for Stefan and Michele in my Garden!

Stefan and Michele are a beautiful couple and so much in love! They each independently contacted me on December 30th about officiating their Valentine's Day wedding--Michele through an email from my website and Stefan from Weddingwire. At first I thought they were two different couples!  They had not decided on a venue for their wedding so I suggested my garden and they liked the weddings in my garden they saw on this blog. So we met and they booked me and my garden for their wedding. Only their parents would be attending. We came up with a ceremony they loved and were all set for the big day.
Joseph proudly escorted Michele down the aisle. He and Michele's lovely mother Theresa traveled from Oregon to be with us. 
Stefan's mother, Karin, traveled all the way from Germany for this auspicious occasion! Unfortunately Stefan's father was unable to make the trip and he was truly missed by all. Look at those fantastic red shoes Michele is wearing!
And so we began the ceremony exactly at 2:14 PM. Kate Pope was our official photographer. Kate does a lot of weddings in my garden and it was good to work with her again. Click here to see Michele and Stefan's wedding photos by Kate too. (The photos on this blog were taken by my husband, Dave, with my digital camera.)
Michele sneaks a peek at her happy parents as I welcomed them all and thanked them for being with us today.
 A few words on love and marriage that reflect the couple's beliefs and feelings for each other. 
 "Stefan do you.....?"
The weather forecast for this day was not looking good at the first of the week. But as time went on, the forecast was for highs in the high 40s, low 50s and that was exactly what we had. The sun was shining and we had a little breeze.
 "Michele, do you......?"
 "With this ring...."
 Stefan says the same.....
 After a closing blessing, I made the required pronouncement of marriage.
 Happy kiss!!
 Really married, finally! 
 Our happy couple. That red just pops! Perfect for a Valentine wedding! 
Congratulations, Michele and Stefan! I know you are so happy and I extend my congratulations and best wishes for a wonderful life together!
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Saturday, February 14, 2015

Courtney and Tristan's Wonderful Wedding at The Stockroom!

Tristan and Courtney's wedding was Monday October 20, 2014 at The Stockroom and it was great! You might ask why am I four months late in posting this wedding?  Well, after their wedding I downloaded the photos taken with my camera to my computer and created an album. A day or so later, my computer mysteriously shut itself off for no apparent reason. Panic! I was afraid I had lost everything. I was able to start my computer again and nothing was gone but the photos. The album was there but it contained no photos--strange. It has taken me this long and a dear "geek" friend to unearth them from hiding!
When Tristan and Courtney came to see me last July they told me they did not want a traditional wedding, yet they really did not know much about how a wedding ceremony was structured or what they wanted. They loved going through my ceremony material and choosing what was meaningful to them and when we were done, we had a sweet, humorous ceremony that was clearly an expression of Tristan and Courtney! And, it turned out to be fairly traditional after all.
Their ceremony was at 5:00 and the sun was beginning to set. The Stockroom is set up for the ceremony with the tables pushed to the sides for now.
The view from the windows into the big room.
Pretty lighted stars hanging over the altar area. 
Both Courtney's and Tristan's families pitched in and made this wonderful wedding happen. Everything was DIY and there were moments when I wondered if it would come together but not to worry, it came together beautifully!
I usually work with Diana at All Saints Chapel which is also owned by Empire Properties which owns The Stockroom. So, since it was a Monday and no weddings at the chapel, Diana was here to help with this wedding. She stepped right in and took over directing the wedding for which I was very grateful. She is such a good sport and willing to do whatever is needed to make the couple's wedding day the best it can be.
Lots of yummy looking cupcakes appeared, along with a cake for the cake-cutting ritual! 
Very clever topper for the cake! 
We had a slew of little girls who were all flower girls. 
More flower girls! They were so excited!
Checking in with Tristan. It is about time to begin the processional. 
Here we go! First in was Mary, grandmother of the bride, escorted in by Justin, our Best Man. 
Tristan escorted his mother, Debra, followed by his father, Octavio who traveled from Spain to be with us for the wedding.
Then Morgan, brother of the groom, escorted in the bride's mother, Pandora. 
The two bridesmaids and the maid of honor carrying the baby ring bearer entered followed by the gang of flower girls!
And now for our bride and her proud father, George! 
All the guests are standing in her honor. 
George placed Courtney's hand into Tristan's hand and took his seat. The guests were seated and we began. 
After the welcome we had a short prayer based on First Corinthians.   
I spoke to the couple's parents to thank them for all their love and support throughout Tristan and Courtney's lives.
In September while planning the wedding, Courtney and Tristan found out they were going to have a baby due in April. So we included the Blessing of the Unborn Baby. They both put their hands on the baby and we all blessed this special little baby. Following that I read some passages from Isaiah and First John.
Then it was time to tell their story! They met at a gathering of mutual friends in 2010, took notice of each other and went on their first date a couple of days later. From that point they were practically inseparable as they just loved being together.
Only a few months later, on Valentine's Day of 2011, Tristan proposed and they combined households which included Coutney's beloved pooch, Fletcher, who has been a strong bond in their relationship. They planned a long engagement while Tristan finished college but in the meantime built the life they wanted with each other. One big question was whether to elope or have a wedding. Obviously they decided on the latter because they wanted to be surrounded by their families and friends as they declared their love and dedication to each other.
Courtney and Tristan particularly liked the symbolism of the Celtic hand fasting ritual for their vows. They joined left hands and I looped the hand fasting cord around their hands as I asked them seven questions, one for each loop of the cord.
When finished, they joined their right hands together to form the symbol of infinite blessing their marriage in the eternal ebb and flow of the universe.
They released their right hands as I removed the cord which would be replaced symbolically by their rings. 
After the blessing of the rings, Tristan placed the ring on Courtney's finger as he said his ring vows. 
Courtney's turn....
The pronouncement of marriage!
Everyone applauded as they shared their first kiss as husband and wife!
It's a done deal now!!
Courtney and Tristan, this blog post has been a long time coming and I am overjoyed that I was able to recover the photos of your wonderful wedding. It turned out so beautifully. In a couple of months now your baby will be born and I celebrate with you for that wonderful blessing. I wish you the best of everything!
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