(You can read Part I here.)
I always knew I wanted to do a first look. I’ve never believed in the traditional way of doing things anyway. Adam and I stayed together the night before the wedding, which is taboo. But, I mean, we live together and even got married on the same street we live on. It just felt right.
Which reminds me – I don’t think I mentioned it in the recap but we got married at my dad’s house. I’ll share more details about that when we get there.
Anywho. While we waited for the guys to finish getting ready and come over to Nana’s, we took bridal and bridal party photos.
My original idea was to have the wedding outside at Nana’s and the reception at Dad’s but we quickly realized that logistically that wasn’t going to work. So, the compromise was getting ready and taking photos at Nana’s and doing both the ceremony and reception at Dad’s. This worked out really well. And I think you can clearly see from the above photo why I wanted to get photos taken at Nana’s. So much love!
I didn’t want my bridesmaids to look stuffy or be uncomfortable the whole day, so when it came to their dresses, I picked out a color and fabric (Alfred Sung Peau De Soie in Garnet) and let them choose which style they wanted. I love how each of the dresses are different and show a little bit of personality but they blend so well in photos.
When I asked my friends to be bridesmaids, I created cards that said “Every superhero needs a side kick… will you be my bridesmaid?” and included buttons. We included those little mementoes into the wedding by pinning them onto the bouquets. This was a cute little way to bring in more superhero details without going over the top.
Also, we made the bouquets ourselves using flowers that we purchased in bulk. This was a huge labor of love on behalf of my family and friends. The ladies spent HOURS putting together our bouquets and all of the floral arrangements for the reception. But they turned out so well and I love the way the colors pop. If you have the resources (aka, creative and talented ladies) to make your own floral arrangements, I totally recommend it. We saved a ton of money this way.
I will add a note here, however, that we purchased the flowers from Sam’s Club and I cannot recommend that. The flowers did not arrive on time. They were supposed to all be delivered on Thursday but some of them did not arrive until Friday. They became droopy and flat very quickly. Thankfully they made it through the photos without looking too terrible but I really would not recommend that route. Honestly, they were so terrible, I should have asked for a refund. But we made them work. Ok, enough negativity. More photos!
Madilyn’s flower girl dress, headband, and ruffle socks are from Target. I ordered her shoes from Khol’s online. I love how the lace of her dress compliments my dress so well. And since her dress was inexpensive, we didn’t have to worry about her getting dirty.
This is Tara, Madilyn’s mom and my friend since 2009 thanks to the Navy. Her husband, Chris, is currently deployed so he missed the wedding. (Sadface!) Tara and I instantly clicked and spent most weekends together seeing movies, visiting theme parks (she’s a HUGE Disney fan), and drinking cheap wine. In 2010, Tara had Madilyn and I got to watch my friend become a wonderful mother. In 2011, they all moved to Pensacola but I had the chance to visit them quite a few times during their time in the Panhandle. They moved back to Jacksonville this year (and just in time for the wedding!) so I am enjoying having my friend within arms reach again.
This photo is kind of a blooper but I had to share the story behind it. Somehow, by the grace of God, I managed to stay dry eyed all day… until it came time for Tara and I to take photographs together. She has always been so supportive of me. She’s seen me through some pretty terrible times so we have a special bond. Not to mention, she’s my most emotional friend. So when we came together for that quick intimate moment, I momentarily lost my cool. But it made for a really great memory!
Samantha will always be known as my best blind date! We met online in 2010 and bonded quickly over happy hour at Applebee’s. One time, I saved her dirty undies from her dog (I didn’t know they were dirty at the time) and at that moment, she knew she was stuck with me. Samantha helped me out so much with this wedding and even coordinated the bachelorette party. In 2013, I stood beside her as she married long time love Nick. And I was so honored to have her as part of my bridal party.
The award for the longest friendship goes to Shelley. We met in 2002 in high school and fit right into the “opposites attract” cliche. Thanks to her, I survived both high school and college and now she lives in Tampa working as a (new!) Audiologist. (Which is really handy considering Adam requires regular trips to the Audiologist for his BAHA.) In May 2014, I was honored to be Shelley’s maid-of-honor as she married Bryan. We have more inside jokes than we can keep track of and still enjoy the occasional slumber party. I guess that was 13 years of friendship does to you.
One of my gifts to the girls were these monogrammed clutches, which I purchased from GroopDealz. I also gifted them Kate Spade Sailor’s Knot necklaces with a note that read, “Thanks for helping us tie the knot!” I wanted to make sure they had a couple of nice reusable items to remember the wedding by.
Can we just pause for a minute and note how handsome my husband looks here with that smirk. Swoooon.
As we geared up for the first look, everyone went inside and I hid until Adam was in place.
We didn’t have a super emotional first look experience. It was a tad awkward, actually. But Adam has never been one to be overly emotional so I wasn’t expecting him to fall to his knees or burst into tears at the sight of me in a white dress. He was mainly just hot and ready to go back inside. But we got some really good shots.
That last shot is one of my favorites out of all the photos. We finally got a real smile out of him!
We didn’t have a balanced wedding party. I knew right away who I wanted to include. Adam easily decided on his childhood best friend and his brother-in-law but he struggled to come up with a third groomsmen. In talking about our wedding, one of the most important aspects to us was to only have people there that genuinely wanted to be there. So, it felt a little silly to try to force another groomsman into the party when there were only two guys that Adam really wanted to participate.
The attire for the guys was easy. Jeans and boots, which they all already owned. We picked out tan vests from Men’s Wearhouse. The ties for the groomsmen were the same color and fabric as the bridesmaids dresses. And Adam’s tie was one I picked up at Ross. (I wanted his to be different and also include ivory.)
Dustin and Adam grew up together in small town Georgia. Anytime you get them together, you can barely get a word in edgewise because they’re probably telling a story about how that blew something up or sharing a misadventure involving Adam’s home made go-cart. But they’ve been friends for as long as they can remember. Over the years, I’ve really enjoyed getting to know and become friends with Dustin and his wife Rebekah. In 2012, when Adam and I were newly dating, we attended Dustin and Bekah’s wedding in St. Simon’s, Georgia.
Stephen and Adam also grew up together… though Stephen is now married to Adam’s “baby sister,” Christy. Stephen is a little bit older than Adam which meant he had a car when Adam didn’t. They also have a ton of stories of adventures and misadventures. Stephen spent some time serving in the Army but is now enjoying the quiet life back in their small hometown.
And OF COURSE we included my best furry pal in the wedding. Adam laughed when I mentioned making Bean the “ring bearer.” Little did he know I was totally serious. I very well couldn’t leave my best pal out. (Lima was there, too. You’ll see.)
I love how Bean snuck his way into a few of these photos, ha!
Another first that was important to me was to have a “first look” with my dad. Being an only child (and an only girl!), I knew my dad would struggle with this day so I wanted to make sure to include him as much as possible. I also hoped to get some tears out of the way before the ceremony.
When Madilyn got her invite to be in the wedding with her superhero flower girl button, she was so excited and told Tara she wanted to wear a cape. I made sure to include a cape in her goodie bag. My cape is the one I wore for my bachelorette party. These photos were a spur of the moment idea to kill so time but they’re some of my favorites from the whole day.
And with that, Super Wiggle is ready to fly over to the ceremony!
To be continued…
Photos were taken by Jenn Guthrie Photography, whom I cannot recommend enough. She was an absolute gem to work with. For any other questions or specifics, leave a comment below.