While Jes is away marrying her best friend with the mountains as their witness, she asked me to write about my experience.
A little backstory. I was not always a mountain girl. I moved to Utah 12 years ago and fell in love with the area. The landscape spoke to me. I made my home here. Just over four years ago I was lucky enough to be set up on a blind date with a shy, sweet, handsome man. We slowly and then quickly hit it off. I think that within six months or so we started building our lives together, making goals and seeing them through. We started talking marriage and what that meant for us. We became engaged just before Christmas in 2008 and planned a summer 2009 wedding.
I think in a lot of ways the wedding was easy to plan because we instantly knew what we wanted. We knew where we wanted to marry and the details started to fall into place. I won't day that it wasn't hard in the middle of planning it, but in retrospect it really wasn't hard at all. My favorite part of planning the wedding was the way it brought us and our families and friends together.
I would like to share a few of my favorite things about the wedding (besides my sweet, shy, handsome husband). I will try to be in order.
1. Our rehearsal dinner: We chose to invite everyone (plus a few coworkers) to a cocktail party the night before the wedding. This helped to set the mood, let everyone mix it up and take stress off of Eric and I. We were able to make the rounds. Our hotel also had this amazing meeting space in the form of outdoor fire-pits that everyone gathered around each night.
2. Walking down the aisle with both of my parents. This was how I always knew it would happen. Eric did the same.
3. Our vows. We borrowed them from many sources and tweaked as needed.
"I choose you. To live with you and laugh with you. To stand by your side and sleep in your arms. To be joy for your heart and food for your soul. I promise to laugh with you in good times and struggle alongside you in bad times. I promise to respect you and cherish you. I promise that form this day on we shall walk hand in hand along the same path. May we have many adventures and grow old together." My advice is to have a ceremony that fits you whether that be to write your own or recite the traditional.
4. To be surrounded by our family. Our sisters were our attendants and our friends married us. It felt right for us.
5. My dress. I really loved it. It was bought from Once Wed and fit perfectly with no alterations. It was stretchy and did not require any strange undergarments. I wore gorgeous flats. I was comfortable and felt like a fancy, shiny me. I would really recommend flats and comfy underwear. And take the shoes for an extended test drive. I wore mine to work and was on my feet most of the day. Nary a blister. I knew that they were the ones.
6. Our crazy dance party. It was killer. I was in pain for days. It was worth it.
7. My brother-in-law Alfredo Santiago was our photographer, and my very pregnant sister made sure that we got the shots we wanted and then partied down with us. We did about 10 posed shots and that was it. My message would be to find someone that you are comfortable with and let them do their thing.
8. DIY stuff. We made beer. Brewing is a new hobby of ours and it felt really good to serve our friends and family something that we had made. I made favors, Eric created vases for our wildflowers. Again, we enjoyed creating things to make the celebration feel like us. My big tip would be to just pick a thing or too, something that does not stress you out. It is not worth being stressed out over a small detail. If it makes you crazy cross it off of your list.
Cheers and please visit We Ski Slow for more details of the DIY projects and tons more photos. And if you have questions, ask away. I would love to meet more Mountain Brides!
note: Meghan was a Wedding Graduate featured at APW a couple months back - her post was great!!