I said those words six years ago today.
Dave purposed to me in October of 1999 and we weren't married until August 17, 2002. This was all my choice, I had this silly idea that I had to be 21 before I got married so almost 3 years after we were engaged and almost 6 years after we started dating we finally said those two little words. It was wonderful and perfect and the three years of planning were well worth it.
I woke up the morning of my wedding at my mom's house. Since it was about 6 am the sun wasn't quiet out and I could hear the rain coming down on the roof. This made me a little sad because I was really hoping to have some pictures taken in the garden at my reception site, but I had hope that it was just a small early morning storm and it would move off fairly quickly. Around 8 my Bridesmaids all showed up along with my hair stylist to do our hair. It was still raining but I hadn't lost hope yet. It was so nice to have my hair done at home where I could relax and we could all eat breakfast and lunch.
At noon we all left for the church to get dressed and do our make-up. August in Ohio is synonymous with upper 90's and 100% humidity so I was not about to have my make-up melt off my face. Just as I stepped outside the sun came out from behind a cloud and the rain stopped. I swear to God, it was like a movie but I was so happy.
The girls and I got to the church shortly before the guys did so we rushed off to our side of the church. I was not going to have Dave see me before the ceremony, it's bad luck you know. So us girls stayed in our room and finished getting ready. In the meantime the guys arrived and had their pictures taken first.
Starting from left to right we have Butch, then Dave, the Best Man Robbie, my brother Nick, and Joe. The little guy in the front is my brother KJ who was the Ring Bearer. Once the guys were done with their pictures they went back to their room and all of them but my two brothers fell asleep. It seems the older three spent the night with Dave at our apartment and they didn't get much sleep. I will say that Dave stayed true to his word and he was not hung over for our wedding.
While the guys slept us girls had our pictures taken which of course took a lot longer. You saw my favorite picture of myself on Friday but here is a full length one of me and one of all my girls.
Left to right, Me, Maid of Honor & my sister Steph, Lindsay, and Tiffany (not Tif Carrie). The Flower Girl is my step cousins daughter Mariah.
After our pictures were done it was back to our room so that all the guest wouldn't see me before I walked down the aisle. I had been so calm and stable all that day. My bridesmaids were all more nervous than I was and amazed that I wasn't nervous. I guess when you know you've made the right decision there's nothing to be nervous about.
Finally it was time for the ceremony to start. All my bridesmaids walked out and I was left by myself. Once the Flower girl and Ring Bearer were down the isle they closed the doors and I walked out. As I turned to position myself in front of them I started crying. I'm not talking watery eyes, I'm talked full on crying with a smile on my face. Since my father died when I was 5 I decided that no one could take his place that day and I walked myself down but standing there I thought of him and how much I wanted him there. I know this may sound weird to some of you but I truly believe that my dad walked me down that isle, I could just feel it!
If you read the first chapter in my Biological Father story then you may remember me talking about gluing the beads onto my veil so here is a picture that shows off that veil. All those sparkles are the candle light bouncing off the beads.
Dave and I were very lucky to have his Grandfather who is a minister marry us. I think this added to the pure raw emotion that was expressed during our ceremony. I cried the entire time not because I was sad but because I was HAPPY. Dave even cried and got a little chocked up during his vows which sent all the guest into tears.
The next few pictures are of us during the ceremony and I'm including them because the show off all my decorations. I knew from the time I was a little girl that I wanted to get married in candle light. So I bought 100 candles of different shapes and sizes and they were placed along the baptistery. I also had 4 candelabras on the stage and candelabras down the aisle. Along the side walls of the church were white Christmas lights and lavender tulle and there were white Christmas lights strung in all the plants. It was truly beautiful.
This next picture is of the full Bridal Party and the one after that is of Dave and my hands with our rings. A little story about the hand picture before you see it. I knew that I had to have that traditional picture so I had my nails done specifically for it. Every nail had hand glued rhinestones across the French Manicure. I'm pretty sure my nail tech hated me that day but I just had to have them done that way. Oh and see Dave's ring, that bad boy was Platinum and Diamonds and about 11 months after that day he lost the thing at work. He now has a sterling silver band from Walmart that he can't seem loose if he tries to.
Finally it was time to head to the reception which was about 20 minutes from the church out in the country. I choose this place because of the beautiful grounds and gardens. I would have loved an outdoor wedding but I also knew I wanted to be married in the church and there is no way I could have handled the stress of what will the weather be so I got my outdoors this way. The first two pictures are my two favorites of just Dave and I, the first being my absolute favorite. The third picture here is my favorite of just Dave. I know he isn't smiling but the way he is standing is just him. Actually he was standing like that waiting for them to finish taking my picture dying for a Jack and Coke when the photographer saw him he told him not to move and snapped this.
The picture of Dave was the last one of the posed pictures so it meant it was time to go and get the Reception started. Dave and I were starving by this time but the guest had devoured the crudities. Our meal was a Pasta Bar where 3 chefs set up cook stations and everyone had there choice of 4 different kinds of pasta, beef, chicken, or shrimp, tons of different veggies, and then ab Alfredo, or marinara sauce. Back then this was a new thing so our guest were blown away by it. It also made my life allot easier, I mean everyone could find something to make with this which was important to me since there were kids and vegetarians there. My Aunt Nan made my 4 tired cake and it was beautiful and delicious. Thanks to two of Dave's uncles our guest were able to enjoy a full open bar, talk about a great wedding present that everyone enjoyed. I will tell you that the only people who left our wedding sober were the ones over 60, the ones under 18, and the DD's, so not that many!
When Dave and I first started dating in high school the popular thing to do was pick a song. So like everyone else we picked Nothing Else Matters by Metalica. Dave is a HUGE Metalica fan and I must say that I do enjoy some of their music. I had never really heard them until I met Dave and the first song I liked was Nothing Else Matters so it just made sense. Of course Dave and I used this as our wedding song and I'm really glad I did. If you don't know it or are thinking this is a strange choice just listen to the words. My Uncle Ed did the Father Daughter dance with me and we danced to my mom and dad's wedding song by John Denver (I can never remember the name of it), and I'm sorry to say I can't remember what song Dave and his mom danced to either.
Ok I think I have covered everything about my wedding. It was an amazing day and I don't think I would change a thing. Dave and I both had a wonderful time and our guest enjoyed themselves to.