Thursday, April 17, 2014

Shawn and Lindsay Marry Amid Great Joy at Prestonwood Country Club

 This Fall it was a real joy to marry Lindsay and Shawn.  They had a fabulous time and so did everyone else - all of us delighted for them.  They had guests that came from  from the East Coast, the West Coast, The North, Canada, even Ireland to share their wedding day with them.   
And just think.  It all started when Autumn, Lindsay’s sister,  who really loves pizza, especially, Checker’s pizza, went there with Lindsay.  And it was there that she met Shawn.  And that, as the expression goes, 'is all she wrote.'  Lindsay and Shawn had their wedding at Prestonwood Country Club, a spacious and elegant setting perfect. 
And they had these excellent professionals and just great people helping make their day perfect:  Dara Blakeley of Dara Blakeley Photography took these wonderful photographs, Sally Oakley was their wedding planner and, Randy Bennett from Joe Bunn DJ Company did both their ceremony and reception music and Watered Garden did their amazing floral arrangements.  
In their ceremony I asked each of them (of course, with the words 'wife' and 'husband'): 'The person who stands by your side is about to become your spouse. They will look to you for gentleness, for support, for understanding, for encouragement, and for protection. You must never take them  for granted, but be continually sensitive to their needs. Your life and love will be their greatest source of joy. So I ask you, will you have this person to be your lawfully wedded spouse? Will you love and cherish them? Will you always uphold her and encourage them? Will you be loyal to them, and true? Will you honor them all their days, and be respectful of them, and will you promise to always bestow upon them your heart’s deepest devotion?'    And of course they said, 'Yes'.
They wanted all their guests to know that their love is unwavering and everlasting.
 And very playful!
 They told me that 'they are so grateful and appreciative of each other for the unconditional love that they give each other. They are grateful for the support that they provide to each other through the good times and the hard times.'  It is the good times that buoy us up and it is the hard times that refine us and define us, and like jewels, help us shine.  This couple has the glow that comes from a mature seasoned love and I am so delighted for them.
 I received this lovely note from Lindsay after their ceremony:  'Hi Robin, Thank you so much for a wonderful ceremony. Everyone has been talking about how much they LOVED you and how special you made the ceremony. THANK YOU. ... It was so wonderful to work with you. You made it such a wonderful and delightful ceremony. We couldn't have asked for anything better. Thank you :)'  And I thank them, too, and send them both many many blessings and know that they will have a love that continues to deepen through all their years. 

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Will and Ashley Marry in a Joyful Ceremony at Prestonwood Country Club

Early last fall I had the pleasure of marrying Will and Ashley at Prestonwood Country Club in Cary.  It was a treat to get to know them over the year we planned their ceremony.  They are both easy going fun loving people so had a lot of nervous anticipation for their elegant ceremony.  But it went off without a hitch, or with a hitch, pun intended, and everyone loved seeing them thoroughly enjoy their ceremony.  And the professionals that helped their day go so smoothly were excellent.  Tracy Adams of Adams and Events was stellar as always,  Jessica Arden of Jessica Arden Photography was their fabulous photographer, and Watered Garden created their gorgeous bouquets.
This is some of what we said in their ceremony to honor their love:  'They feel so blessed to have found each other.  They knew immediately that in each other, they had found someone special, someone to share all of life’s adventures, large and small. 
They can envision nothing finer than sharing all that is to come – travels, having and raising children, Celebrating holidays with you, their family and friends, supporting each other in career advances, laughing a lot, crying together when times are rough , and  growing old together, sitting on rocking chairs at the beach or in the mountains. 

Today they celebrate with you how blessed they feel to have found each other, how grateful they are that their love is strong and keeps growing.'
When Will surprised Ashley and proposed at The Fearrington House and she said, ‘Yes’, they were honoring the strong foundation of love and friendship they had built.   They are best friends, respecting each other’s unique perspectives and rhythms, able to talk about anything and find understanding and acceptance.  Ashley loving Will’s cheesy jokes, and Will loving Ashley’s cooking.  And they were surrounded by their family and friends who also love Will's cheesy jokes and Ashley's style and who danced all evening helped by a great DJ from Island Sound.  They also did the video for them.  And Island Sound is also always great.

I got a wonderful note from Ashley when they got back from their honeymoon, 'Thank you for being a part of our special day.  We are so happy that we were able to work with you! You truly made our day and ceremony unforgettable.  Our trip was wonderful and it has been amazing being married!'   I'm so happy for them and I imagine, these almost eight months later, they are still delighted being married.  I love being married after 15 years with my husband.  It makes what I do even more joyful.

Friday, April 11, 2014

Kristen and Brandon and Their Kids Celebrate at Beltline Station in Durham

I took a winter hibernation break from writing about ceremonies to ensure that I was fresh for couples in the new year.  Then I realized that there were some 2013 weddings yet to honor. 

Brandon and Kristen were a joy to marry.  Not only are they dedicated to each other, they are equally dedicated to all the children in their loving combined family.   Thank you to Heather Swanner of Heather Swanner Photography for letting me use her fabulous pictures.  And a special thank you to Nicole Conder of Premier Party Planners for all her assistance in making their day special.
And the Belt Line Station in downtown Durham was a perfect place for them to celebrate their marriage. They delighted that we were here in this old train station for their wedding.  Beltline Station was the station for the Lynchberg, VA to Durham NC run.  Brandon is from  NC and Kristen is from VA, making this an auspicious place for their joining together in marriage.
It was a joy to tell their family and friends how much they love each other.  In the ceremony I had the pleasure of saying:  'Kristen was first attracted to Brandon’s gentle spirit. She loves his calm and patience, especially with their kids!  He is very funny, witty, musically talented and very smart.  Brandon loves how Kristen is so easy being herself as well as how kind, smart, and understanding she is.   They share the same sense of humor and make each other laugh constantly.

A poet writes that love at its best is friendship caught fire.  Kristen and Brandon met under difficult circumstances and supported each other as friends during the hardest of times.  Their friendship strengthened and deepened.  They became best friends and fell in love.  They are still best friends, still in love, encouraging each other to go for their dreams, supporting each other at all times.

Together with their children they have created a life they cherish.  Each person able to be themselves fully, finding a partner in crime for all of life’s adventures, trusting each other with their hearts, looking forward to all of the steps of each child learning who they are in the world of adulthood, grateful each day for the love they share.' 

Their ceremony was filled with family love.  After Kristen's father walked her down the aisle, I asked him:  'The loving relationship between a parent and their child, no matter how old the child is, is cherished like no other.  In the love is interwoven protection, guidance, support and caring.  So I ask Kristen’s father, as he escorts her down this aisle on her wedding day:  Who presents this woman to be married to this man?

(He responds:  Her mother and I do.)  Then I asked their combined kids:  'As Kristen begins this new journey with Brandon, she wants to also acknowledge her profound love for all five of their children.   Her life could not have reached this day of such joy without these five additional loved ones who have helped to make her into the person she is.  So I ask Carter, Hayden, Jack, Ali and Jake. Who gives this woman to be married to this man?  (All five children say, we do.”)'
Their daughters Ali and Hayden sang for their ceremony.  What a treat!
Kristen’s ring has special significance, doubly powerful on their wedding day.   The ring that Brandon placed on Kristen’s finger is her grandmother’s anniversary band that Kristen received when her grandmother passed away.  Their wedding day was also her grandmother’s birthday!

Much play was had after the ceremony, too.  The architectural highlights of this venue make it a unique, funky, and extraordinary space with lots of opportunities for fun.
We said the following in their ceremony and it really fits them:  'Kristen and Brandon have found in one another someone who cares deeply about honesty, integrity, loyalty, kindness and caring.  These values nurture and inform their love, and they guide all aspects of their lives.'

I wish them all the joy in the world and I have no doubts they are loving being married and being an official family.    There were lots of other professionals who made their day special:  Beltline Station created all their gorgeous bouquets.  Simply Cakes made their cupcakes and Triangle Catering - Belt Line handled their catering, their DJ was Garrett Lamm of Touch of Class DJs.   Many blessings to Brandon, Kristen and their kids, and many thanks to all the other professionals for whom their wedding was a labor of love.