Hello beautiful and welcome to part two of my wedding day. Hopefully you’ve already read part one. <– Linked here
From Happily Single to Happily Married Series
- First Dates
- Knowing He’s the One
- Planning a Wedding
- Wedding Day – Part One * From Hair and Makeup to Walking Down the Aisle
- Wedding Day – Part Two* Walking Down the Aisle to the Last Dance
Last time, I left off at the moments just before my mom and I descended down the aisle. I remember my mom joking with me before the wedding, saying she might not be able to hold it together and may refuse to let go of my hand and give it to Ross. What I didn’t know is that it would be hard for me to let go of her hand as well. As we were walking down the aisle, so many memories flashed in my head of my mom and I. I couldn’t think about anything else other than how much I loved my mom and how glad I was that I had the honor of walking down the aisle with her.
After my mom did, in fact, place my hand in Ross’, we were ready for the ceremony. We had an amazing pastor who made Ross and I feel right at home. Our pastor invited God into our marriage and that’s more than anything we could have ever asked for.
As we were on the Hilbert Circle Theatre’s stage, I looked around and basked in the fact that so many famous singers/actors/musicians (including Frank Sinatra-one of my favorites), had stood in the exact same place we were standing. We had a beautiful black backdrop with multi colored lights. The theatre was decorated in pink and gold intricate detailing, along with beautiful red chairs, filled with the people who we loved the most. Taking a moment to let it all in made me appreciate those moments even more.
As we went through the ceremony, another important moment stands out to me. The moment my Best Buddy, Shawn, took his turn on stage to read scripture. During my time at Purdue University, I was lucky enough to get to know Shawn. I was the President of Best Buddies (a non-profit organization to enhance the lives of people who have intellectual or developmental disabilities) During those two years, Shawn was my buddy. We spent tons of time together and got to know one another as friends. Shawn changed my world. He made me see the good in everyone, he taught me to look beyond appearance and into the hearts of people, he taught me how to laugh, and he taught me unconditional friendship. Well, it’s been 5 years since I graduated college, and we’re still the best of friends. Having him as part of my wedding was absolutely amazing. The picture below is one of my favorite moments from the day.
After the ceremony ended, Ross and I, as well as the bridal party, were off to take more wedding pictures, as the guests walked upstairs for cocktail hour. We took pictures with the bridal party outside, and finished taking photos on the stage, just us two. As cocktail hour came to a close, the guests started taking their seats. At that time, Ross and I walked down the grand staircase and began to greet all of our guests. Soon after, dinner began and Ross and I were starrrving! Weeeelll.. you know that thing they say about how the bride and groom don’t even get to eat their own dinner? It’s true, ha. Ross and I grabbed a plate (we paid for an Italian buffet-amazing), but we couldn’t waste time eating when we had the most important people in the world to hang out with.
After dinner ended, we were ready for the dances. Ross and I danced to I Can’t Wait by Ben Rue. This song had deep meaning to both of us. When we first started dating, the song would ALWAYS play when we were together. It felt awkward at first, especially since we a had only been dating briefly. But, I remember telling myself this would be the song I danced to when I married this man. I remember smiling to myself and Ross looking over smiling too. I don’t know if he knew what I was thinking at the time, but I have a feeling he was thinking something along the same line. After our song was over, it was time for the mother/daughter dance. This song was another HUGE song for my mom and I. You Can’t Lose Me by Faith Hill was a song my mom and I had sung to together since I was young. I also had secretly met with my D.J. and throughout the pauses, I was able to say a few words to my mom about how much I loved her and what she meant to me. My mom was so surprised by this and of course we were both bawling. Soon after, Ross and his mom had their memorable dance. And last, but not least, my step-dad, Joe and I, had a surprise dance. Whew–that was a lot of dancing. 🙂
Ross and I then went to cut our cake, and it was delicious! We ordered a multi-tiered cake with layers of strawberry, vanilla, yellow, and chocolate. We tried saving the top piece for our one year wedding anniversary, and of course left it there. That’s okay, we’ll just order another one, haha!
Afterwards, the garter and bouquet toss took place and then finally, the dancing begun. We danced with our friends and family all night long. It was so special to have everyone we loved in one room. It meant the world to both Ross and I that we were able to celebrate these moments with people so near and dear to our hearts.
As the last song played, I remember looking around one last time, knowing that this would be the last and only time that I would have EVERYONE I loved in the same room. That is the weirdest feeling to have. It happens one time in your life, and then…it’s over.
Our wedding was magical and I wouldn’t trade it for the world, however, I am happy the planning is over, and now I get to spend my life with my wonderful HUSBAND!
If you are following me on instagram, (@katesnumberones) you saw that I asked my friends to write a few questions about weddings so that I could incorporate them into my blog post. Listed below are a few questions I received.
Do I really want a large wedding?
I say weddings are all about you and your husband. If you want a large wedding, go for it. If you want a small and dainty wedding, that is a great idea too. Picture yourself at your wedding. What do you see? Who do you see? I would go with your heart there.
How do you narrow your guest list without feeling guilty?
Ross and I struggled with this. Ross wanted to invite his baseball coach from when he was 4, who he hadn’t talked to since then. Haha. We eventually had to sit down and ONLY invite the people who were part of our lives at that moment.
I struggled with whether or not I wanted to invite my old high school/college friends. I loved them and they were once a huge part of my life, but were they my friends at the time of being married? No. So that was my answer.
I would just ask yourself a couple questions. Are they part of my life now? Do I see them being part of my life in 5 years? If the answer is no, I say skip the invite.
How did you pick your venue?
I went to SO many venues and none ‘felt right’. It was kind of like picking my husband. 🙂 Just kidding. When we walked into the Hilbert, I saw history and delicate detailing. I never pictured myself being married somewhere so historic, but I knew it felt right. I didn’t want to pick a place everyone else was married in. In fact, the Hilbert hardly has any weddings, which made the venue feel even more special.
I would close your eyes and picture yourself standing up front with your husband. Are you outside or inside? What do you see around you? Afterwards, I would eliminate all venues that don’t have that vibe…and then visit the venues and base it off what is most cost effective.
Did you have a wedding planner?
No. I met with a wedding planner, but couldn’t bring myself to pay that much for someone to plan my wedding, when I could do it myself. It was hard and stressful, especially because the Hilbert doesn’t do many weddings, but I did it. I still am happy with my decision to put that money that I would have spent on a wedding planner, into something else wedding related
How do you find the one?
I have a post all about that here! 🙂
Where can we save with costs?
I saved wedding money in a few different places.
- I didn’t hire a wedding planner.
- Ross and I thought of all the wedding connections we had and used them.
- Our florist, baker, and caterer were all people we knew. They helped us with the cost and did such a fabulous job.
- I didn’t do wedding favors. I struggled with this, but soon realized my guests would either leave them on the table or throw them away. I knew I couldn’t spend much on favors, so instead, we made a donation in their honor to a foundation close to our hearts.
- I contacted several hair and makeup artists. The prices of hair and makeup on your wedding day is absolutely ridiculous. I had some hair stylists quoting me over $300 for my hair! I understood the value in hair and makeup and definitely didn’t want to under-credit their work, however, knew paying over $500 for hair and makeup wasn’t going to happen. Instead, I searched and searched and sent email after email, searching for the perfect stylists for me. Eventually, I found them and I loved their work and prices!
Thank you so much for reading part two of my wedding day. If you have any comments or questions about your upcoming wedding, make sure to ask them in the comment section and I will get right back to you! Just remember weddings are important, but in the scheme of things, it is one day. The rest of the days, you get to spend with your amazing husband. Be gentle, be kind, and don’t take it too seriously.