Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Our Wedding - July 14, 2012

After 6 months of planning it was finally our wedding day!

The Inn

Ben and I awoke fairly early.  I had to start getting ready for our big day since my hair appointment was at 9:30 a.m. and he was going to Jamie's for breakfast and to spend time with his family.  I showered, threw together all of our things and then it was time to go.  I kissed Ben goodbye and went to meet my mom to go to get my hair done!  Since we were running about 10 minutes behind, I didn't get a chance to stop for coffee - unfortunate.  We had to make a u-turn, but we made it to see  Bri at Euphoria Salon who was referred to me by Jamie.  Bri did an AMAZING job!!  Earlier in the week we had done a practice run for my hair and when I showed up I had changed my mind completely on what I wanted.  She was surprised, I think, by my decision and go-with-the-flow attitude.  I'm guessing she has had other brides who were a bit more high strung?  It took about two and a half hours to get everything done. My makeup was beautiful and exactly what I wanted.  My hair was even more gorgeous than I could have hoped for!  Everything was perfect!

Getting ready!
Rewriting vows
Arriving at the Inn!

After my hair and makeup was done, Ma and I went back to the hotel to pick up Clif and my brother and head down to the Aurora Staples Inn where the ceremony was to be held.  I wanted to stop at Target on the way down so that I could grab a Starbucks and a few last minute small things (i.e. Tide-To-Go Stick).  This turned into a scavenger hunt for a Target on the way to Stillwater which was ridiculous to me because I think every time I turned around in Minnesota there was a Target.... 

We got to the Inn about 45 minutes late and I was feeling a bit stressed, but still calm.  I waited in the car for a few minutes while Ben finished his "getting ready" photo shoot with the photographer so that I could get into the room.  We had reserved the carriage house for the wedding, and for a few nights after, and it was absolutely gorgeous!  Very spacious and homey.  When I was able to get into the room, Ma went to work on helping me with final touches and getting me into my dress.  As soon as I finished putting on my lipstick, it was time to go see Ben for our first look at one another! 

This was my favorite part of the day by far.  Ben was waiting on the porch of the main house and I circled my way around the house.  The photographer wanted me to wait on the side of the house in case Ben wasn't ready but I crept along behind her because I didn't want to wait another minute.  We had our photographers set up to capture the moment and as I walked up the steps my heart was racing.  This is the moment I had been waiting for my whole life and it was even better than I could have ever imagined!  When I reached Ben, I grabbed his hand and then slipped in front of him.  Neither of us could stop smiling.  The time had finally arrived when Ben was allowed to see my dress and I finally got to see him in his suit.  I couldn't wait to walk down the aisle and marry this man!  It was a beautiful moment and the happiest I have ever been.  Seeing Ben's joy and love for me was just amazing. . .

First look. . .

While we were having our "first look", the rest of our guests had been seated and were doing a ring warming ceremony.  We had tied our wedding bands together and they were passed around to each guest for their blessings, prayers and well wishes. 

After our "first look", it was time for the ceremony to begin.  I walked down the aisle (or sprinted as Ben jokes) to Love you 'til the End by The Pogues.  (Ben's brother Jon was are awesome DJ!) I thought I was walking at a slow enough pace to make it part of the way through the song, but I didn't even get past the instrumental intro.  Oops.  The whole time I had my eyes set on Ben with a huge smile on my face.  Ben and I chose our brothers to stand up for us at the wedding - his brother Andy and my brother Shane.  Keith, Ben's brother-in-law, agreed to officiate our wedding.  The ceremony was short - about 15-20 minutes, but was perfect.  Both of our mothers did readings and surprisingly made it through them tear free.  Ben and I each wrote our own vows and finished with the same paragraph which we wrote together.  When we exchanged rings, I kept trying to grab my ring to put on him even though both Keith and Ben kept saying no.   Both Ben and I made it through the ceremony without shedding a tear.  I was rather surprised with myself! 
First kiss as HUSBAND & WIFE!!

Man of Honor, Officiant & Best Man
Following the ceremony we went up the hill and had a champagne toast.  The Inn provided beautiful champagne flutes and had the champagne chilled and ready for us.  We also had sparkling grape juice avaiable to the children present and anyone who did not want to consume alcohol.  After the toast we did family photos as fast as we could because it was pretty warm outside.  It took about 45 minutes for the pictures to be done and we sent our family off towards the reception while we went with our photographer to take pictures around Stillwater.

We are truly blessed with an amazing family!

 We drove downtown and walked around and found some really great places for pictures.  Some of the places were literally in an alley behind a restaurant - our photographer, Rachel of De La Vue Photography, was absolutely amazing.  She was easy to work with, dealt with different family dynamics very well, and is just incredibly talented.  We had a lot of fun going around Stillwater and taking pictures.  We even went up to an old fashioned popcorn stand and had some pretty neat pictures there!  The guy in front of us left a few bucks to go towards our purchase which was very nice of him, and the owner of the cart let us have the rest for free!!  He even stepped out of the cart so we could take pictures inside!!  We had ordered a rootbeer float and we sucked it down real fast - it was hot and we were thirsty!!  We also had a few random people come up and congratulate us.  I personally enjoyed hearing everyone say, "O my gosh....look at her dress!  It is gorgeous!" as we walked by.  Vain?  Yes....but it was my wedding day so I don't care. 

When we finished in Stillwater, we headed to Minneapolis for the reception.  It is roughly a 35 minute drive and it was nice to have that time to spend alone with my new husband!  We listened to music and sang Wedding Bell Blues by The 5th Dimension at the top of our lungs.  It became our unofficial wedding day song.  We arrived at Jax Cafe and took a few pictures before joining our guests.  Jax has this absolutely stunning back patio that is beautifully landscaped - a couple of my favorite pictures of the day are from there. 

When pictures were done we joined our guests in our reserved room.  We had these crazy good mixed nuts and fresh fruit for everyone while they were waiting as well as a champagne punch.  We signed the marriage license, cut the cake and Ben gave a toast.  Andy, Ben's brother, also gave a toast.  We then sat down to supper.  Guests had a choice of steak, a breadcrumb crusted walleye or mushroom ravioli.  Ben got the steak and I went with the walleye.  We had an excellent waitstaff - they were on top of everything and made sure that we were taken care of.  Jax was even great enough to cut our cake into servable pieces.  There was a choice of chocolate cake with a strawberry mousse filling or white cake with a raspberry mousse filling.  We had a custom made cake server with our names and wedding date on it.  We also had forks that said "Mr"and "Mrs". 

Ben being polite.
Me being polite.

Cutting the cake.

When everyone was stuffed, we enjoyed conversation for a bit and then everyone went their separate ways.  Our moms helped us pick up the rented room a bit and then Ben and I drove back to the Inn in Stillwater.  When we arrived back at the Inn, we had our first dance to Have I Told You Lately by Van Morrison. 

A toast. . .

The day was truly perfect.  Ben looked incredibly handsome in his suit and he was so very sweet throughout the day (neither of these things are shocking - he is always handsome and sweet :) ).  We both agreed that we absolutely loved our wedding and everything about it.  We were able to enjoy our guests as well as one another.  We look forward to having a reception with our extended family and friends present in the future.  We both feel truly blessed to have such amazing people in our lives.  Thank you to those who attended our wedding.  Your precense made our day incredibly special.  Thank yo uto those who were not in attendance, but have sent your offerings of joy and love. 

Little tid bits from the day:
  • Old
    Something old: vintage hankie; Something new: dress, shoes; Something borrowed: diamond earrings from Ma; Something blue: date of wedding stitched into lining of wedding gown.
  • Wedding colors turned out to be white, light pink and purple.  This was completely unintentional.  I just picked things that I liked instead of going with a real color scheme in mind and that is how it turned out!
  • I gave my mom and Ben's mom vintage hankies prior to the wedding in case they were to shed a few tears.
  • As a wedding gift I gave Ben a 50th wedding anniversary present.  Ben gave me an Angry Birds coloring book, an appetizer cookbook and castle chess piece wine corks.  His reasoning behind getting the castles instead of a king and queen is that in chess he always tries to protect his castle piece.  Aww....
  • When Ben and I got to see each other for the first time I went in for a hug and he pushed me back to see my dress - I pouted.  I wish the photographer could have captured his face when he first saw me - it was priceless.  You could see how much he loves me and how happy he was.  It was wonderful.
  • On the way to the front to do her reading, my Ma's shoe got stuck in the ground and came off half way.  There always seems to be something that happens to her!
Ma reading
Laughing over my oops.
A frequent scene throughout the day.

  • My lipstick transfered to Ben many times and we carried babywipes with us to clean off his lips.  I will now tell any bride ever that unscented babywipes are a MUST for your big day.
  • While reading my vows my hands and voice were shaking.  It was very hard not to cry.
  • After reading our vows and exchanging rings, Keith presented Ben and me to everyone as a married couple.  I didn't think to grab my boquet back from Shane so he got to walk up the aisle with my flowers.  We joked right after the ceremony that him and Andy should have linked arms.
  • We had two photographers and one trainee covering our day.  I am now a big believer in having multiple photographers to capture every part of your day. 
  • While driving to downtown Stillwater to take pictures, our photographer asked questions about our history as a couple.  We had briefly discussed it through emails and our previous meeting, but we went more in depth in this conversation.  She found our story to be incredibly romantic and said that we have the love story that every high school girl dreams of - marrying your best friend in high school after growing up together and apart.  We do have a beautiful love story.  :)
  • When I picked out my flowers (Michaels - half off!), I grabbed a few extra to have a special boquet made for Kara.  She wasn't our official flower girl, but I wanted her to feel special.
Kara & her flowers
  • The wedding programs told the stories of how Ben and I met - his version and mine.
  • Jax Cafe prepared special printed menus for our big day and had special match books for everyone that said "Ben & Lyndsey - A perfect match".  Presh.
Jax personalized menu
A Perfect Match

  • It had rained the night before so all of our heels kept sinking into the ground - it made walking down the aisle a little tricky.
  • My hair piece was custom made by a woman in London.  LOVE it.
  • I stepped on the back of my dress semi-often post ceremony, but my dress really didn't get THAT dirty.  Part of that reason is due to the fact that we didn't have a dance floor with beer spilled all over it that I was walking/dancing on.
  • Both Ben and I were very calm throughout the entire day and days leading up to it.  I think we baffled people with how laid back we were - I don't think we would have been able to feel as relaxed for our big day had we had a larger wedding.  The small, intimate wedding we had was very stress free and comfortable.  It was perfect for us.
  • At the reception there was a person playing piano and you could request songs.  My mom went and requested Somewhere Over the Rainbow as a surprise for me.  :)
  • I finally got my coffee after supper!!  When we were finished eating we had the option for coffee and both Ben and I jumped on that wagon!
  • At the reception we presented Keith with an 18 year old bottle of scotch as a thank you for officiating.  He chuckled and made the comment, "I feel judged. . . " and we all had to laugh.  As a thank you to our "minister" we gave him booze...
  • Our reception ended around 9-9:30 p.m. and Ben and I were both exhausted.  I don't know how much longer we could have gone!
  • When we were packing up at Jax, our head waitress came in and said that her and all the other staff had been talking about my dress and how gorgeous it was.  They said that that dress was made for me to wear it.  I thought this was very sweet of her to say - she absolutely didn't have to say anything yet she chose too.  She also commented that they always judge the different wedding gowns they see.  I'm glad I received a positive review!
  • My shoes rubbed some pretty awesome blisters on my feet even though I had worn them around the house to break them in a bit.  Luckily our photographer carried bandaids with her - weird of me to forget....that is normally a staple in my purse.
  • On our way back to the Inn after the days festivities, Ben and I turned on Bon Iver and discussed our day and our love.
  • We stopped at a gas station to grab a couple of waters on our way to the Inn and two kids were in awe of our fancy clothes and some hillbilly guy kept saying that it's all over - no one must have warned us before the wedding!  Thanks, dude.
  • The Inn was awesome and put a bottle of our leftover champagne in our room, chilled, with flutes, for when we arrived that night.  They also had diet/regular coke in the fridge, two waters, two robes (we didn't use them because that is weird, but it's nice they were offered!), and there was candy in a dish on one of the tables.  AWESOME.
Signing the marriage license!
Signing the marriage license!



Ben's witness
My witness