Once upon a time there was a freckle-faced, red-headed girl who lived in a small town. She was raised by two amazing parents, who loved her more than life, and vice-versa. As a child, she didn’t have a care in the world. She was athletic, passionate, and spirited. As she grew up, she allowed the ups and downs of life, the opinions of others, and society to make her question her value. She felt as though all of the heartache she experienced through medical issues, emotional breakdowns, and insecurities were on display for the world to criticize. She grew to wonder if she would ever find a soulmate who would be able to appreciate the self-proclaimed flaws, broken pieces, and imperfections that seemed to overwhelm her. The search for her significance seemed never-ending, until God showed her the truth about who she really was– precious, beautiful, and wonderfully made (Psalms 139:14). Until she found a way to love herself, she knew that she couldn’t accept the love of another. She knew God had a plan for her, and she just had to be patient…God was just waiting for the perfect time to introduce her to her very own prince charming ❤ It really is true that love finds you when you least expect it…
Of course, Jarid & my wedding day began with a good sweat to get the blood flowing. I didn’t want to over-do it, because I knew the day in itself would be exhausting (in a good way), so I stuck to a quick 45 minutes on the elliptical in the garage of my parents’ house…besides, I was entirely too excited to get to the reception site to help my girls start decorating to stay there any longer! My matron of honor picked me up after a shower, and we were on our way to help with the decor.
I was surprisingly calm for the majority of the morning, just taking it all in and enjoying every moment. Before I knew it, 11:30am rolled around and it was time to head back to my parents’ for hair & make-up. The only thing to be done at the church was dressing and pre-ceremony pictures! My stylist, Emily, did things to my hair that I can’t even put into words. I knew what look I wanted, but I couldn’t find any pictures of the exact style. She took the ones that I did manage to compile and molded my locks into her very own creation.
Something old: my veil — worn by my Godmother, my Momma, and my matron of honor
Something new: my earrings —dangly teardrops
Something borrowed: my Papa’s hankerchief (tucked in my garter) & my Mama’s broach pinned to my bouquet
Something blue: my Cowboys football themed garter
Our wedding started at 3’oclock in the afternoon, so most of our pictures were able to be taken before the ceremony. While the guys were doing their thing, us girls were doing ours. Jarid’s best man delivered a sweet card to me, which made me teary. As if that weren’t enough emotion, my parents gave me a card as well, before the ceremony. We all prayed together and lots of happy tears were shed.
Before I knew it, my Daddy was walking me down the aisle to the instrumentals from the song, “A Thousand Years” by Christina Perri, amidst a church full of loved ones who were there to support the vows that Jarid and I were there to make before God. It all happened so fast. We had written our own vows, and the young adult pastor from our church was officiating the ceremony.
After we said, “I do”, we made our exit and drove to our photography site. Where better to get some pictures than my old high school gymnasium. After all, Jarid & I met on a basketball court, fell in love, and he asked me to marry him at half-time of my last college basketball game. We headed back to the church for some traditional shots before making our way to the reception.
Jarid and I had worked pretty hard to make our wedding personal and economical, yet classy. For favors, we burned our own CDs as the “soundtrack to our love story” picking songs that were special to us, or simply ones that we liked to jam out to in the car together 🙂 We didn’t want to do all of one thing (families of five would go home with five of the exact same thing!), so we did every other setting with a cookie cutter wrapped in a cute little box with a healthy cookie recipe tied on. For our centerpieces, we had three different themes — on tables 1-10, we used grade school pictures of each of us — tables 11-20, we painted wine bottles with chalkboard paint and wrote on the table numbers — on tables 21-30, we printed and framed the numbers to sit on a table with pomander-like balls that we put together ourselves. Jarid punched out almost ALL of the flowers by hand so that we could pin them to the styrofoam craft balls. We sat them on flipped-over glasses (martini, wine, and goblets) to create different heights. We also used tulle on all of the tables, and strands of cheap pearls to make the tables appear more full.
Our ushers drove us in my Momma’s gold Jaguar, which was dressed up in hot and light pink streamers, and filled with balloons that we had to pop before we got in…that was a nice little surprise from one of my sly bridesmaids 😉 For dinner we were served green beans, steamed california blend vegetables, seasoned mashed baby reds, grilled seasoned chicken and ham. As we arrived, we were greeted by our DJ, who was fantastic! Literally, we partied all night. He seemed to know just what song to play to pull the crowd onto the dance floor.
Everything at our reception was super traditional. Jarid & my first dance as a married couple was to Dave Barnes version of “God Gave Me You”, Jarid danced with his Mom to Rascal Flatts “My Wish”, and I danced with my Daddy to Heartland’s “I Loved Her First”. We added another special dance so that we could dance with my Godparents to Faith Hill’s “There You’ll Be”. We did the dollar dance, the garter ceremony, the cake cutting, and the toasts. I can honestly say I wouldn’t have changed a thing. God completely blessed Jarid and I on our wedding day, and we are so excited to see how he will continue to work in our marriage.
After all the excitement, Jarid & I drove to Baltimore, MD to spend our wedding night in a gorgeous hotel for the night, leaving for Curacao –the Dutch Antilles– at 6am the next morning for our honeymoon! Stay tuned for lots of adventure!