From the bride:
We had the wedding of our dreams! We wanted a classic, timeless wedding with a woodsy elegance. It was important to us that our guests have a lot of fun and that it felt very special to them to be in the beautiful Napa Valley area we love so much. For the woodsy elegance feel, we tried to picture an enchanted forest merging with the vineyards. A midsummer night's dream with a sense of bringing the outdoors in. We went for full, lush and dramatic arrangements. For our color palette, we went with blush, ivory, peach, lavender, coral pinks, and greens for texture and depth. We used a lot of sandy and natural branches, mercury glass, candles, and white pumpkins for our fall wedding. We wanted the guests to experience all the beauty of the area, so we had the ceremony in a location overlooking the lake and mountains, the cocktail hour in an area with a gorgeous hillside and creek view, the dinner was in the vineyards, and the reception/dancing was in the wine cave.
We met on match.com and set up our first date to meet at a PF Chang's in Dallas where we lived at the time. There was an instant connection, but we took things slow. We dated for two years before getting engaged. Kerry was offered a job with Amazon in California after we were dating for a year and we knew he had to take it. It was a great opportunity. So for the next year, we were flying back and forth between Texas and California all the time. Kerry knew I wasn't going to sell my house, leave my family and move to California if we weren't going to get married. One day I thought I was going to dinner with my sister, her husband and her boss at a nice restaurant in Dallas. When we arrived Kerry had surprised me and had flown in from California and set up an amazing proposal. I was shocked! It was the best day ever - second only to our wedding! I didn't even know he had bought a ring - and he picked a gorgeous ring! After getting engaged, we had a two year engagement because I had to sell my house in Texas and get moved and settled in before starting to do any wedding planning. I really believe my parents had a hand in me meeting Kerry. My Dad was diagnosed with ALS a month after my mom passed away so I stopped dating for a long time. I was taking care of him full-time. My dad told me before he passed away that when he got to heaven he was going to ask God to send a good Christian man into my life. After he passed away, I went on match.com just to get out of my house but I changed my mind after signing up. One day I got an email that some messages were about to be deleted because too much time had passed. I decided I should take a quick look at them. Kerry's message was flagged to be deleted and I saw the sweet message he had sent me. I decided to take a chance. We met that week and I knew there was something different about him from anyone else I had ever met. I was really cautious but optimistic. We took things slow and I am so grateful that I decided to open up that message before it was deleted! I met the man of my dreams! As a random side note, my identical twin sister also met her husband on match.com!
Seeing each other when I was walking down the aisle! I was so excited to see Kerry and he said he was waiting all day to see me. He looked so handsome. I couldn't believe it was actually happening. I had waited my lifetime for that moment and it was perfect! Kerry said he thought he couldn't believe I was marrying him when he saw me walking towards him. I felt just as lucky. And the vows he wrote to me were so beautiful. I will never forget it.
Our Save the Dates! They were a lot of work putting together, but everyone loved them! Kerry sanded all the wood slices I bought and I designed a template for the engraver. After we got the wood slices engraved, it was a lot of work arranging all the moss and tying lavender into little bundles for each box. And then tying ribbon on each box. It didn't seem like it would be that much work when we started! We learned that lesson. Everything takes longer than you think it will! I also hand glued all the Swarovski crystals onto my wedding dance shoes one by one. We had been taking Viennese Waltz lessons and I wanted my dance shoes to be special. It was a labor of love but we loved how they turned out. They were like little disco balls on my feet! We made the big T & K sign that was at the guest sign in table together. I glued the moss onto the letters and Kerry put together the wood and stained it. We have it hanging in our dining room now. It's a nice keepsake. Putting together the Wedding Welcome boxes was a lot of work, but we got a lot of positive feedback about them. I loved working with an artist to create the personalized watercolor maps which marked the wedding and rehearsal dinner location, as well as some of our recommended places to visit in the area. Also, I love Coca Cola so the personalized Coke bottles were my favorite! And the wedding recovery boxes were a huge hit! It was a surprise how many people mentioned how appreciative they were to have them.
Listen to your own gut instincts first! You know what YOU like. Listen to the advice of others and get their opinions, but make your decisions based on your own preferences first. On that note, if it is important to you, don't listen to what anyone else thinks! Just go for it! You don't want to regret it after the wedding. Trust me on this. Also, you know who you are as a couple and what vision you have together for your wedding, but remember that your groom isn't going to be thinking about all the details you are, nor will he understand why you're obsessing over what shade of green something is. Just accept that your partner might not always understand what you're doing, but in the end, they will appreciate all of your hard work when it comes together. Lastly, my groom thought the little details didn't matter. After the wedding, he realized there was a method to my madness. It was the attention to detail that made our wedding unique. Not everyone will notice every little thing that you've done, but together as a whole, the little things make an impact and change the way your guests experience the event.
Venue: Calistoga Ranch, Calistoga, California
Location: 580 Lommel Road, Calistoga, California 94515.