Today's post is going to be emotional, so consider yourself forewarned! I want to share with you a little bit about the best day of my life. I'm not talking about my quinceañera (it helps that I didn't have one lol!), my first kiss, my last day of high school, my first day of college, a graduation, or even the birth of my son. Today is all about my wedding: the most perfect 8 hours of my life. I would go back in a heartbeat and relive that day a hundred times over. I have been inspired (mostly by social media) to stop and share a few of moments from my favorite day in the world. And, to be honest, this may develop into a series, because I could talk/write about my wedding for DAYS. It was a Southern affair to remember, and I will never be upset about that!
The Reveal - One of my favorite memories from the day. Taylor and I did not subscribe to the typical "Bad Luck to see each other before the walk down the aisle" philosophy, and I am so glad that we threw tradition out the window! I initially made the decision to see Taylor before the vows out of practicality. I couldn't in good conscious make my guests wait around for dinner (esp. since our budget wouldn't allow for cocktails or hors d'oeuvres) while we took a billion pictures (because gurrl you know I wanted a billion pictures)! But that decision turned out to be probably the best decision I made along the way. Seeing Taylor before the ceremony began calmed my nerves and brought me the most joy I had all day (besides the vows, of course)! I was beyond ecstatic/excited/overflowing with joy, and he was so excited/nervous that he might have shed a tear or two. I could go on and on, but instead, I'll let the pictures tell the story for me (be sure to scroll through them all):
The Styling - What wedding -- no, what memory! -- is complete without a dress to remember? I picked up my wedding dress at a sweet little boutique in Austin (which is sadly no longer in business) on a special shopping excursion with my mother-in-law. She was such a dear during the whole wedding planning and throughout the big day. The one dark cloud when I got engaged was knowing that my mother wouldn't be there on my wedding journey, and just like that, God allowed sweet Dana to step in and help me out with many of the special mother/daughter moments. I cannot BEGIN to imagine my wedding without her, and I was so very happy she was there when I found my dress. We were helped at the boutique by a kooky sales lady with an over-the-top, European-debonair personality, who made the whole experience a blast. I felt like a million bucks being served champagne while we shopped. It was our third stop of the day and by far the most fun! I tried on my dress and while all day long I had been trying on figure-hugging, lace silhouettes, the cloud-like tulle and a-line silhouette of what was meant to be my dress immediately spoke to me! I had a vision as soon as I put it on of floating down the aisle. I could picture it with just a few modifications becoming the most beautiful dress for my beautiful day. The rest just fell into place.
I was able to customize my dress to perfection with the help of a local Austin seamstress. I added cap sleeves, a beautiful beaded belt, moved the flounce to the back (which gave it gorgeous movement when I walked/danced), and had a bra built-in to the bodice (in order to avoid the dreaded dress-tugging). Check out the transformation:
The Hair & Make-up - I had my make-up done at Ulta and my hair was done by one of my best friends and bridesmaids, (shout-out: Angeline! you are a rock star!) I was beyond pleased with the look, and one huge tip I have for other brides: ALWAYS do a trial run before the big day. No bride needs to look at themselves in a mirror an hour before they walk down the aisle and gasp in dismay! The picture below is from my bridal shoot which I used to test out my hair and make-up. I am so glad I did, because I was not a fan of the hairstyle I thought I wanted. It gave me time to make other plans and test out a second hairstyle.
Lest you think my day was too perfect, the truth is for all of my love of makeup, getting ready was not my favorite part. There was some chaos at the hair salon (a long story about a bridesmaid who asked for the same hair style as I had and another bridal party member who became vehemently protective of my hair-do), but almost all of us made it to the church on time! And what big day does doesn't have a hick-up or two?
The Venue - this decision was the most pain-staking. It was the toughest to make, and by far the most expensive. But deciding on a beautiful backdrop to say our "I Do's" was important to me; therefore my fiancee, family, and friends helped made it possible. Our ceremony (along with all of our bridal party/family pictures) took place at the First Baptist Church of Boerne. It has a gorgeous chapel with beautiful stained glass, lofted ceilings, and gorgeous lighting, but even better is the quaint prayer garden with a sweet chapel, the most idyllic location for bridal party photos.
The reception took place at the Cana Ballroom, a gorgeous venue inside and out with beautiful sweeping views. It's located on Boerne's main street, right behind St Peter the Apostle Catholic Church.
Honestly, when all is said and done, all of the things I've listed above matter infinitely less than what the day was really about: Taylor and I coming together in love. The vows we wrote to each other will always be what I cherish the most about that day. He is my best friend in the world and I am endlessly grateful the Lord brought us together.
I am also so very grateful for all of the beautiful family and friends who helped that unforgettable day come together. So many loved ones were integral to making our wedding possible. A HUGE shout-out to All In The Details Events, local San Antonio wedding planner Melissa Gaines, who swooped in at about t-minus 2 months before the wedding day and helped make it all possible! She helped coordinate all the last minute vendor details and kept our day on schedule from start to finish. I highly recommend her. And to all that made a journey to be a part of that beautiful day (whether it was the drive from San Antonio, the far corners of Texas, or my sweet family that traveled in from Missouri), I am so very thankful you did so. If you are reading this, and were a part of our big day, thank you from the bottom of my heart.
To my groom, who I know is reading this (mostly because I force him to read all my blog posts), I love you to the moon and back. Without you my life would be dull and boring, I wouldn't have a beautiful baby boy or the wonderful life that we live together to the fullest! I would do it all over again tomorrow (could we please? It was so much fun)!
NOTE: All of these photos were taken by the endlessly talented Suzanne Nolan, and her company Love Stories (you can find her on Instagram here), unless otherwise noted. I did include 1 photo from my bridal portrait session, taken by a photographer my dad selected.