Sealed with a kiss!

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

Tuesday, October 31, 2017

Katie and Tim's Wonderful Wedding at Wakefield Plantation Country Club!

Many thanks to my friend and wedding colleague, Kevin Seifert, for photographing this wedding for me to post on this blog! 
The site of Katie and Tim's wedding was TPC Wakefield Plantation, a golf and country club in Raleigh very close to Wake Forest. The wedding date was October 7th, 2017. They have a beautiful outdoor area in the back of the club for wedding ceremonies however, the weather turned rainy for this wedding and the staff there hustled to move the ceremony inside about 30 minutes before start time.
This is the indoor area for the reception which is all set up and ready. 
Above the mantel. 
Peeking out the window at the rain which was starting to fall. 
Edible Art made this beautiful cake!
The Sweetheart Table
The staff brings in the floral decorations from the arch and the aisle. The Purple Poppy furnished the florals.
Where the wedding would have been. 
Our couple's photographer, Shawn Tomkinson, gets a shot of Tim with one of his groomsmen. 
Photos of family weddings.
Katie and Tim live in Atlanta but  grew up together in North Carolina which will always be home. 
The Georgia Peach was their signature cocktail. I am partial to this because I was born and grew up in Georgia!
So now the double room adjoining the reception room is being readied for the ceremony. 
The staff is busy putting the florals taken from the garden into place in this pretty room that has awesome acoustics. I did not even need a microphone. The monogram from the reception area was placed above this mantel. Add a few candlesticks and other gold decor and it was complete.
Very nice job! 
I found a quiet spot to review the ceremony script before the guests arrived. 
Pinning on the corsage for a grandmother. 
The guests are being seated and having a look at the wedding programs. 
Shawn, our photographer, and Meghan, the venue director, go over last minute details. 
Peter Krumenacker with Island Sound DJ provided the ceremony music. He and Shawn meet each other. 
With the family in the lobby getting ready to line up and process in. There were 3 grandmothers and 2 grandfathers in attendance. 
Tim and I make our entrance followed by the groomsmen.
After the bridesmaids entered, it was time for Tanner, nephew and ring bearer, to enter with his dad, Stephen. The original plan was for Tanner to ride in a cute little wooden wagon but Tanner decided he would rather walk in.
A tearful Katie and her dad, Tim, enter as the guests stand in her honor. 
The couple turned and faced each other as the guests were seated and we warmly welcomed them to this beautiful wedding. We remembered those loved one who were not present.
I invited the parents of Katie and Tim to stand for a surprise tribute and they were really surprised that I knew all the dates and places of their weddings.
This is when I was addressing Tim's parents, Sarah Grace and Mark, and the words were: "It probably seems like only yesterday that exactly four years later you brought your second—and, Tim assures me, favorite—child home from the hospital, and now you’re here to see him get married." 
This generated a bit of laughter, especially from our best man, Eric, older brother of the groom! 

The most fun part of the ceremony was telling their story which spanned 17 years and lots of adventures. They met in 2000 in the eighth grade when Katie's family moved to Wake Forest from California. Katie had a crush on Tim from day one and chronicled for the story many humorous incidents from those years in school. They went their separate ways for college but eventually found their way to each other. It is a good story bringing us up to the wedding with many more stories to come in the future.
Then the story mentioned that Kristie, Katie's younger sister, tagged along when they went to the State Fair one time. And that Katie locked the keys in the car to boot!
The story included quite a bit of humor which everyone thoroughly enjoyed. 
Then what they love about each other, why they want to marry, and what they are looking forward to.
They read their vows to each other from my book then they exchanged rings. 
I made the pronouncement and invited them to kiss. 

Married finally at last!
The presentation of the newlyweds!
Time to celebrate!
A few more kisses!
The rain had stopped so we went outside for post-ceremony photos. 
Katie and Tim, I loved working with you to create your amazing and funny ceremony. Congratulations on the journey of your lives. I am so honored to have joined you in matrimony!

A Beautiful Wedding for Jana and Joe at Highgrove!

Jana and Joe chose the lovely Highgrove Estates for their wedding on September 30th, 2017.  Jana is from Raleigh and that is where her family lives. Joe and Jana live in South Carolina and we did not actually meet in person until their rehearsal the day before.
Of course during the process of creating their ceremony with them, I get to know them pretty well so when we met it felt like I had known them for years. I have each of my couples complete a questionnaire individually and send to me without sharing their answers with each other. From their answers, I write the story of how they met and fell in love, what they love about each other and what they are looking forward to in marriage. Then we weave this into their wedding ceremony.
Highgrove is so beautifully decorated and comfortable. It is a venue that furnishes each couple with a wedding director and the venue is an "all in one" for ceremony and reception and they do their own catering. A one-stop shopping wedding venue!
Sweet Memories baked this beautiful cake. 
The garden ballroom is all set for the reception. 
My friend, Tim Smith, a talented musician, is part of the band for the reception. What a sweet surprise to run into Tim at this wedding!
The band is all set up in the ballroom and ready for some dancing later on. 
Meanwhile, upstairs, the bride and her bridesmaids and mothers are in the bridal suite getting ready and then go downstairs to process in. I came in to say hello to Jana and her entourage and to get the marriage license signed.
Downstairs I ran into Mark Holland whom I have known for many years through weddings. He is a videographer and when he has time, he bartends at Highgrove. That is what he was doing today.
The guests came through the house on the way to the portico for the ceremony and wrote their notes for the couple.
Getting ready to line up. This gentleman is Joe's grandfather. Joe's father is standing behind him. They were delightful to get to know for this wedding.
Our Highgrove director, Jill Frink, gave me the signal to enter and take my place for the ceremony. 
After the grandparents entered, Joe escorted his mother in and his father followed behind. Then Joe joined me up front.
Mother of the bride is escorted in by her son, Henry, then he returned to be with his brother Ricky to escort Jana in. Their father is deceased.
Our Maid of Honor takes her place.
Ricky and Henry had the honor of escorting their sister down the aisle to be married to Joe.
Our photographer, Dave Shay, was capturing the presentation of the bride and the exchange of hands.
It was a beautiful day and Jana was so happy and Joe was beaming at her! 
After the welcome address and an opening prayer, I stepped over to the parents to surprise them with a tribute from their children.
Their friend Amber then presented a contemporary reading of First Corinthians 13. 
Then I launched into the story of how they briefly met back in 2011 when they were both students living in Norfolk. Joe spotted Jana first and it was close to love at first sight. He finally wrangled a way to meet her in August of 2013. Once she met Joe, Jana was inspired by how passionate he is about his career and wanted to know him better. And so the dating began.
When Joe landed a desired position in South Carolina, Jana followed and began her career there. 
Joe surprised her the day she moved into a new place with a new puppy and a proposal of marriage on June 4th, 2016.
Of course we know what Jana's answer was! And then the wedding planning started.
Then they each got to hear what the other had told me in confidence about what they love about each other, why they want to marry and what they are looking forward to in marriage.
The declarations of intent followed as I asked each one of them their promises. Joe answered "I do."
Jana answered "I do."
Then they read the vows they had written from my book to each other. 
Jana's turn.
A blessing of the rings then the exchange as they placed them on each other's finger. 
A closing blessing for Jana and Joe. 
The big moment--the official pronouncement of marriage.
Then I invited them to celebrate their union with a kiss!
Yay! We are married!
Our director, Jill, congratulates them on their way in the house.
Jana and Joe! Congratulations on your marriage and such a beautiful wedding! I loved working with you and honored to join you in marriage. God bless you always!