Our Moms went up and lit their unity candle parts so when it came time for Ryan and I to light the candle we used the two outter ones they lit and... ok you know how it works! Haha. Stefan escorted my mom down the aisle, which was adorable, then looped back around to escort Hannah, Ryan's sister, to fufill their Junior Attendants positions. They were so fricken cute!!!!
And I loooove this picture. Babs got it in the church before Ryan and Josh went down the aisle to wait for me to get there :P It is just so sweet, he looks like he is looking for me to get there already!
Before I knew it my dad was walking me down the aisle.
He was making me smile, commenting on how my mom was already crying and how proud he was of me. It was very touching. But like a magnet my eyes found Ryan's and that was all I saw as I walked down. Deacon Paul said he saw Ryan's mouth physically drop when he saw me and then quickly recover. My dad put my veil back and kissed my cheek and my hand found Ryan's and... everything was perfect. I came down the aisle to the good old traditional Here Comes the Bride and I felt like it was just a dream come true.
The ceremony itself was beautiful. The pew torches my mom's friend Ann Marie made were stunning, the flowers were great, the music was beautiful, it could not have been better. When Ryan and I sat down he took my hand and gave it three squeezes, our little thing to say "I love you" that no one else ever can notice or see. It is a moment between us that we abuse almost as often as the words themselves!
Matt, one of Ryan's groomsmen, did the first reading from Genesis, on how Adam needed a suitable partner, an equal, in Eve. Perfect. My cousin Jill did the second reading that spoke of trust, loyalty, and honesty in love. The Gospel was the Wedding Feast at Cana, ironically the first gospel Ryan and I heard at church together after getting engaged. Father Tom's homily was beautiful. Having him know me and Ryan so well had it be so personal when he spoke of our character and our love. He made us laugh, he made me tear up, it was just terrific. We then did our vows and exchanged rings, and you saw the kiss picture in an earlier entry! I cannot wait to see the professional shots of those!
I then presented flowers to Mary since she has so many huge connections to my life. My mom prayed to her to become pregnant with me and then I was born on the Virgin Mary's birthday, September 8. Mary is my confirmation name. May is the month of Mary which we were married in, and I have a crescent moon and two stars as a tattoo on my ankle, all of which are commonly depicted in Marian artwork. Pretty cool huh? (: I always pray to her too when I need a little extra special help. She comes through for me a lot. The song for this was "Gentle Woman" and if you've never heard it, google it, it is stunning. Lois, our cantor, had this wonderful alto voice that broke your heart and made you smile all at once.
After the flowers to Mary we lit the unity candle to the song Where Love is Found. Of course my allergies were still terrible and my nose was running anytime I leaned forward so I was getting desperate during parts of the ceremony!!! Haha. There is even quite the unflattering picture of me wiping my nose on my Irish Linen bridal handkercheif. No I will not post that here :P I was glad I had it though!
After we went outside for the arch, which my 87 year old Poppy was so honored to be a part of. My Poppy was a Sgt Major in the Marines in WW2 (actually the youngest in history to reach that rank at only 19 years old!) and always has instilled my sense of pride and patriotism. I never expected to end up married to a Marine, but my Poppy was sure thrilled! He and Ryan exchange war stories and military anectodes like crazy.
So we went through the arch, no pictures so far of Matt whacking me with the sword and welcoming me officially to the Marine Corps, but he did do it! Ryan was royally pissed when the photographer broke in to the arch to fix my veil... yikes. But no one else knew, he was just not happy.
Then we took pictures in the church.
And outside. Before we were in the limo on our way to...
We took pictures and mingled during cocktail hour. My stomach was still funny so I nibbled on fruit and cucumbers and some other veggies. Had a diet coke. Mingled more.
Before I knew it we were walking in as husband and wife! Of course to my ringtone for Ryan, "Don't Stop Believin'" by Journey!
Our first dance was to "It's Your Love" by Faith Hill and Tim McGraw. Perfect. As you can see from my header he insisted on dipping me (as we do when we dorkily dance around in the living room) and I was just praying my dress stayed up! It did! We also did a spin or two also, but no pre-choreagraphed number for us. We were winging it.
Then my dad and I danced to "You Raise Me Up" by Josh Groban. He made me cry by saying how proud he was of me and how great of a guy Ryan was. He stepped up and became the best father for me. My mom said my dad became the dad she thought I deserved from birth. He has been truly wonderful and there for me since I was two, I couldn't imagine that dance with anyone else.
Ryan and his mom danced to "Forever Young" by Rod Stewart which is so beautiful if you listen to the words.
I also danced with my Poppy to "My Girl" (as he was like a dad to me til I was 6).
And to "You've Got a Friend" with Stefan, which made me cry since he did! He said it was half puberty and half sadness but I still cried with him. Ryan and Hannah danced together during this song too so it was very sweet.
Our cake was delcious, the bite or two I had! Chocolate mousse and strawberry filling with yellow cake and vanilla icing. Our cake topper rocked! I will repost the link here when I find it but it was totally personalized. Not just hair color or eye color or the flowers on my dress, but the medals and ribbons Ryan had were on the little groom!!! So cool.
I did the bouqet toss (my cousin Suzy caught it) and Ryan did the garter (my brother Sean got it) and it was funny to see the two of them. They aren't at all related even though they are related to me (don't you love modern families?) but it was still hysterical.
Sam, Josh, and my Dad gave beautiful, heartfelt toasts that made me laugh and cry during each one. Sam gave me a written copy of hers as she got too choked and deterred slightly but both were gorgeous. My Dad's was so wonderful, he is a great writer and speaker and his speech was perfect. He joked about Ryan always stealing his belt when he came for the weekend which cracked everyone up. But he said I always had a wanderlust in my eyes, the need to travel and for fame or fortune, but he said the sparkle in my eyes grew with Ryan but it grounded me all at once. It became real and attainable. (:
Before I knew it the night passed. The Cupid Shuffle was played, Soulja Boy of course, I danced with Ryan's former stepdad, his grandfather (who did a great toast and blessing), my friends, Father Tom, and of course my husband. We took tons of pictures, one that will be AMAZING in the gazebo that will be a sillouette shot. So excited for that. And Nicole at Flip Flops and Combat Boots will appreciate this one. We had two open bars at the reception and Allan was like, "Get on the bar! It will be adorable!" Ryan was all for it so on the bar I went. I have no idea how you did it! I was so worried in that poofy dress I was going to fall off or flash something I didn't want to flash!!! Haha. But I thought of you when he had us do that.
Our bridal party decorated our car, cans and all, and off to the hotel we went!
Whew, that took forever! Expect more pictures once I get them from the professional photographer, and a honeymoon post sometime soon! Western NC was amazing and I got some great pictures of all the things we did and the house my parents will live in starting next year.
I'll leave you with the teaser Allan gave us that he polarized and played with...
Check it out!