Saturday, September 27, 2008

Our wedding- The Ceremony


The ceremony was mostly a blur of waiting, waiting, and waiting, wishing I could peek out at what was happening inside the sanctuary, but of course, that wasn't going to happen for me! Instead I had to wait back in our dressing room NOT looking at my dad so I wouldn't start to cry and mess up my makeup!!

Thanks to pictures (and eventually video!) I can see what happened, and so can you!

We introed with a slideshow playing about 20 min before the ceremony began, with pics of he and I separate growing up, culminating with pictures of us together through dating and our engagement! It was quite the effort but was worth it in the end- thanks to my wonderful baby bro for all his hard work! It ended with one of my favorite songs- "More than Anyone" by Gavin Degraw, which Craig very nicely edited our pics to fit with it! (you have to fast forward to 20:20 to see that part! Bad quality online because it's so huge, but I'm still lovin it!)

Then my lovely sis-in-law, Lindsey, started things off by singing "When You Say Nothing at All" by Allison Kraus. Lindz is a great singer, and I was SOOO thankful for her singing- esp since we waited last minute to pick a song! Thanks, Lindz!!

Next came another slide-show to honor our grandparents and my first best friend, who have all passed away. Very emotional moment! As their pictures (often with Ray or I) were shown, a family member came forward and lit a candle in their honor. This was one of the most important parts for me.  They would have all been by our side if they were able, and it was so important to us both to honor them. My 3 grandparents have been gone for awhile, but his both passed within the last year. I was actually kind of glad I didn't see this carried out though, because I'm not sure the tears would've been held back!



Then the funniest part happened! My grandmother was escorted by my cousin's two sons (her great-grandchildren). Well.....just look at the pictures and you'll see that while Anthony was the perfect escort, Jordan was quite the character.....


...the way...


Fortunately, she thought it was hysterical!! And of course, so did everyone else! Apparently he did it on the way out too!

Next was the seating of our mothers, and the beginning of our Sand Ceremony. After walking down the aisle, each of our mothers poured the jar of sand representing their foundation in our lives into the main jar.

Ray's mom (escorted by his brother/best man) 


My mom (escorted by my brother/groomsman)

Time for the groom!

And all his men!

Ladies turn!








Kerri (not smiling!!)






Kaylee, Gabby, and Caylee

And the big moment....



These pictures of the kids during the prayer, sure highlight the difference between boys and girls! :o)




The cutest thing was that my little ring bearer called my name a few times because he wanted me to turn around so he could take my picture! Hehe! Oh and also he tripped going up the steps to give Kerri the groom's ring!



I absolutely loved the words that our pastor (my childhood youth pastor!) wrote for our Sand Ceremony. It was one of the most meaningful parts for me!


My lovely Aunt Joy read I Corinthians 13- The Message version, which was really pretty and different from the usual reading of this passage! (I happened to read this at BOTH of her kid's weddings! One many years ago, and one last year!)


"I now pronouce you Mr. and Mrs............." My favorite part!!!!!!!!




You never know how emotional you will get when the actual moment comes! I've shed more than my share of tears at weddings in the past, that's for sure! I did get quite choked up and teary, but I managed to make it! (Apparently, my maids didn't though!)

Afterwards though, I shed a few tears! Definitely tears of joy and "Oh my goodness! I can't believe it finally happened!"


And was time to PARTY!!!!!

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Our Wedding- Pre-Ceremony

You hear over and over again how time flies on your wedding day and how it's over before you know it. I've been in so many weddings that I've lost count, but it is amazing how different the experience is from the "bride-side!"

My maids and I started the day off at a hotel where two of them and I had spent the night! I had 4 guests in my one bedroom apartment and NO BEDS (just a couch and several air mattresses!), and I was determined I was going to get a good nights sleep the night before! I've heard many brides don't and I'm usually one to not sleep when there is excitement the next day, but I was EXHAUSTED!! I did however wake up about an hour before I had to, so I made use of the time by calling my best friend in Honduras who couldn't make it up for the wedding, which really helped to calm my nerves talking to her!

Then my hairdresser arrived, and the fun begins.....


Sherri Greene has been my hairdresser since I was a kid! She is the ONLY person who has cut my hair in over 20 years, and the one I prefer to style it as well! No question I made sure before we set the date that she'd be available!! She also styled 4 of my maids as well.

My lovely cousin Amy, did my makeup as well as our cousin and my maid Ashley's. She is a great Arbonne rep!


My cute mom!

My maids worked hard to get my dress ironed (our steamer wasn't working!!) and to get themselves ready too!

Then it was off to the church to get dressed there, with just a slight mis-step when my MoH, Kerri, and I couldn't find my car! (The hotel had the longest passageways and was SO confusing- my dad had parked by an outside door, but we couldn't find it!)

Our ceremony was held at St. Paul's Community Church. It was absolutely BEAUTIFUL and their blue accents inside perfectly accentuated all of the shades of blue I used!

Time to get the dress on...

Kerri slipped on my garter's-one to throw, one to keep (it was just too cute!)

Then it was time to meet my groom!

Don't look yet.....

Ok, now!

That moment is still so clear in my mind! All I could think of (besides how handsome he looked!) was how amazing it was to be right there in that moment all alone with him to revel in the joy of the day for a few private moments! I am so glad that we decided to do pictures beforehand. Especially since it was our only time alone until we left the reception many, many hours later! It really helped to calm both of our nerves and to help us enjoy the day more fully!

Then it was time for formals! First with my little girlies! (They were the only ones ready!!)

 Then the two of us

And lots of family and friend pics!

His fam...

My fam......

Our officiating pastor and his family. They were my youth pastors growing up, and I babysat for their kids until they moved to Minnesota! Their daughter Bethany was also my lovely guest book attendant!

The Lasater family! This wedding would NOT have happened (at least not as well!) without them! The girl's were my jr. bridesmaids and flower girl, the boys were ushers, and Chaundra made all the little girls dresses, restyled my dress, altered my maids dresses, and helped with my bridesmaid gifts! Whew!! We kept her BUSY!!!

My maids (showing off their bouquets- and my HOURS of labor!)


The boys...


Then...It was time to wait! This was the hardest part! It wasn't the crowded little room with 11 other girls, but it was the nerves!! Knowing that all of the people I could faintly see coming in through the window were there for Ray and I! That's a bit overwhelming to me, as I'm not used to nor do I like being the center of attention! It was only the fact of knowing how many important people I wanted to share in my happiness that drove me to have a big wedding!

Let the waiting begin.....

Next up....The Ceremony!


ALL photos by Shanell Bledsoe. Check out her site and her blog! Can't recommend her enough!