Sealed with a kiss!

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

Sunday, May 15, 2016

Amanda and Michael Wed at The Umstead Hotel and Spa!

Amanda and Michael live in Maryland but wanted to marry in North Carolina where she grew up. They met 3 ½ years ago when they both were working in Washington DC and soon became inseparable. They planned their wedding for April 16, 2016 at The Umstead Hotel and Spa, one of the most elegant wedding venues in the Triangle. It was a gala affair!
Before the wedding, Dave and I searched out the ballroom where the reception will be held. It is ready! 
The pretty wedding cake by Sweet Memories is in place. 
I love looking at their photos of their parents' and grandparents' wedding photos!
The very brief story! 
Back downstairs in the garden Gary with The Umstead and I hooked my mic into their sound system and did a sound check.
Then I rounded up Emily, the Maid of Honor, to sign the marriage license. 
Cara, our photographer, had the bride and her maidens out in the garden taking some photos before the ceremony.
The guys were hanging out up on the terrace so I got our Best Man, Vincent, to sign the license and certificate. 
Going over the ceremony details with Tia Jones with Erin McLean Events who planned and directed this wedding. Love doing weddings with Tia. She is so organized and on the ball.
The staff of The Umstead on duty for this wedding posed for a photo! 
Our amazing photographer, Cara with F8 Photo Studio, and her second shooter taking a break before the ceremony starts.
The wedding was carefully timed to start at 5:30. This photo was taken at about 5:15 when the shadow from the building was advancing toward the lake. By 5:30 the guests and wedding party were in the shadows instead of being blinded by the setting sun.
The videographers from Reel Weddings pose for a picture!
Our musicians from Arioso Strings are busy playing beautiful prelude music before the ceremony. 
Tia says it is time to start and signals the musicians to begin the processional music.
After the parents of the couple and grandmother of the groom have entered, it is time for the guys and me. 
Then the bridesmaids entered one by one and it was time for the bride. (Notice the shadow line is now behind us!)
Amanda and her dad, Todd, started the long walk down the aisle. 
The guests of the hotel look on from their balconies. (A few weeks after this wedding, I ran into a former bride from a few years ago who told me they were celebrating their anniversary as this wedding was happening. They were looking down from the terrace and were delighted to see that I was officiating!)
Amanda and Todd stop in front of Michael and me. 
Cara gets pictures of the transfer of the bride's hand into the groom's. 
A warm welcome to all! 
Michael and Amanda's wedding day was the third generation in Mike's family that has gotten married on April 16th. 39 years Michael's parents were married on this day and 61 years ago his maternal grandparents were married on this day!
A tribute to their parents brought forth some tears. 
They then heard for the first time what they had each told me in confidence that they loved about each other. This is a feature of my "bells and whistles" type of ceremony. 
Their vows were exchanged. 
Collecting the rings from the best man. 
Michael places the ring on Amanda's finger. 
Amanda places the ring on Michael's finger. 
They place their handwritten love letters into the wooden box with the wine to be opened on their first anniversary. 
A closing blessing.
The pronouncement of marriage! 
Michael goes in for the kiss! 
And there they go, married at last!
Another kiss for the photographer! 
The wedding party exits in couples. 
Mother and Father of the Bride. 
Father and Mother of the Groom.
Michael's grandmother, Rose, is escorted out by aunt and uncle of the groom. 
Congratulations, Amanda and Michael! You are a wonderful couple and I am honored to have been the one to join you in marriage. I wish you all the best for life!!
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