Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Grace's Destination Wedding in Naples!

Married now for three months, I am getting used to the title of “wife” and having a husband. I think the hardest part after getting married was calling my fiancĂ©e, Adam, my husband! But now I have gotten used to both titles and we are enjoying being newlyweds.
The wedding in Naples, Florida was beautiful! Everything went as planned and even the weather held up for us, with clear skies and no rain, thank goodness. Although it rained a bit at the rehearsal dinner and I religiously clung to the weather channel all the days and hours leading up to the wedding, the weather worked in our favor and we were able to have our ceremony outside. The ceremony time was scheduled for 6:00 pm, however, the ladies schedule of events began a lot sooner…

Falling asleep the night before around 2:00 am, I awoke around 7:00 am with much anticipation. However, I was unusually calm, restful and put together. My mom and sister were excited to see me and began to sing the old song from The Muppet Movie – “Somebody’s Getting Married Todayyyyyy.” We danced around the kitchen a bit with smiles as I began to think, “Wow, this is it, today is the day I am getting married.” We soon got dressed, and drove to the hotel to pick up the other ladies in our bridal party before we headed over to the salon.
When I arrived at the hotel, my soon-to-be husband was sending me messages that he was at the hotel and not to come inside. Adam being very superstitious, he warned me of the bad luck of seeing each other before the wedding. So with carefulness, we pulled up to the hotel and the girls quickly jumped into the car to greet me. It was so exciting to see everyone with their flowing gowns in hand and accessories to match. We gave our hugs, kisses and good mornings and headed off to the salon. While my mom and dad were setting up our beautiful candy table for the reception, my aunt was arriving at the salon with breakfast. Although I was forced to eat on many occasions throughout the morning, I only managed to nibble at a half of a glazed doughnut. My adrenaline and excitement was pumping enough energy in me...no need for food!
My mom shortly arrived and after a few hours of completing each girls' last spritz of hair spray and ensuring each bobby pin was in its place, we left the salon in Naples ready to go back home for a bit of relaxation before heading over to the club. Once arriving back home, we made our last minute makeup touches, phone calls to the vendors and ate lunch before leaving...three hours until “I DO.”

Arriving to the club, I was ushered into the dressing room as the ladies began assisting each other with their dresses and I began stepping into mine. As my last shoe was placed on my foot I felt like Cinderella getting ready for the ball. The photographer, Michelle Reed arrived and we had some alone time for a while as she took my bridal shots. I felt like a movie star at a famous photo shoot as I was asked, “Look this way, oh yes, beautiful, perfect shot.” What a wonderful, beautiful day. Thirty minutes until I see my new husband.

More photos were taken and I received intel that Adam was ready to go and the last boutonniere had been pinned. The ladies grabbed their bouquets, I did a last minute makeup check and we were on our way to the ceremony. This is it.

Walking down the aisle with my dad, the feeling of love overwhelmed me. I was so happy to be with my family, looking ahead at all the friends that had come from as far away as Australia. But the most love was felt as I looked up at my groom awaiting for his bride. I am getting married!

The ceremony, conducted by my uncle was wonderfully romantic and heartfelt. The violin music provided by Vivian Aiello and Joan Stewart with Seaside Strings http://www.seasidestrings.net/ added to the feeling of the evening, along with the vows which Adam and I had written ourselves. We cried, laughed, smiled and finally enjoyed our f irst kiss as husband and wife. After the ceremony, we were whisked away for our romance shots with Michelle. We wished we could have spent hours with her recreating those special moments, but as everyone knows, it was time for the reception to begin and finally time to dance!

The reception room was absolutely gorgeous! More than we could have dreamed! Created by the team at Pink Tangerine consisting of Sheryl, Michelle and Olga, our magical, romantic dream was realized. The entire room was up-lit with amber up-lighting and an abundance of votive candles. Not only were candles placed all over the room and on the tables but they were hanging from each centerpiece off curly willow branches and dripping from the 12-foot trees strategically placed around the room. As my uncle looked at Adam and said, "This is what I imagine heaven to look like," I couldn't help but tear up.

The rust-colored linens added to the warm feel of our six guest tables, the candy station table created by my mom and our “walk down memory lane” picture table. My mom used our color-combination of yellows and tangerine to gather candy from all over the country for our candy table. The guests loved this special treat, which also added as a colorful decoration to our reception room.

In addition to candy, we enjoyed a five-tier wedding cake, which can only be described as AMAZING. Karen with Kakes by Karen http://www.kakesbykaren.net/ in Naples did a beautiful job recreating a picture found online along with adding details of flowers which I had created in my mind. It was more beautiful than we could have imagined, not to mention it tasted unbelievable!

Our first song began as we waltzed into the dining room and our elegant, romantic evening with our closest friends and loving family began. Today as I write I can still feel all the emotions of the day and long for more time to take in all that we were experiencing. As everyone says, our wedding day just flew by, but we wouldn’t have changed anything. What a perfect day on April 4th...the first day of our new lives together and my first day as Adam’s wife.

Thank you again to all the people that made our day so special! Especially to the talents of Michelle Reed and her team. I have posted a few of her pictures from our beautiful wedding day! You can visit more of Michelle’s work at her website.