A few minutes before the ceremony, Ginny and I topped off our champagne glasses and retired to the living room so that the guests wouldn't see us. I did feel a little flutter of nervousness, a little stage fright, while waiting and it was probably the longest ten minutes of my life. Eventually, my brother, Andy, came in and told us that every one was there and seated.
Photo by Richard Stanley (my father-in-law)
Our officiant, Neil, was fantastic. We finally met with him a few days before the ceremony and were instantly put at ease. He was exactly what we were looking for. Due to the fact that there was only one line he legally had to say, we had free reign with the ceremony, too. We used a lot of traditional pieces but we also wrote our own vows and added a blessing that I had found in one of the many wedding books I'd looked through a million times.
Before the wedding he and his wife presented us with a nice copy of the ceremony along with the meaning behind the red oak we were going to be married under which was a very nice touch.
We came out from the front of the house to "Feels Like Home" by Randy Newman....
Photos by Punch Pink
By the way, that's totally a Vera Bradley tie my dad is rocking right there.
Photos by Punch Pink
We had a backdrop of ribbons tied in the tree - another detail I loved.
Photo by Punch Pink
We had discussed during rehearsal when I should take my bouquet back from Ginny. I decided to go ahead and take it before the kiss and promised I would have it in my left hand when the big moment came. But did I? Nope. Right up in front of our faces it went. After the kiss I actually looked at Lisa who was photographing us from the aisle and mouthed, "Sorry." We did it again and she got another photo but I actually prefer this one - I like that the kiss was our moment and no one could see.
Photo by Dad
Believe it or not, even though Mom and I spent a lot of time putting the birdseed packets together, I completely forgot about it and was surprised when we were pelted - up close, no less - as we walked back up the aisle to "All I Want Is You" by Barry Louis Polisar from the Juno soundtrack.
Photo by Mary Back (my great-aunt)
After the ceremony Matt and I took a walk around the block to have a few moments alone to take it all in. Neil and his wife, Deann, passed by as they were leaving and called us Mr. and Mrs. Stanley for the first time. Deann also told us that a pair of mourning doves sat nearby throughout the ceremony and that this signifies good luck.
A little bit of luck is a nice thing to have when starting out as husband and wife. Luck and love - and we'll never run short on love.