When I was a kid, I didn't necessarily have a dream wedding.
To be very honest with you, I never really saw it in my future.
One time my aunt (who is only 6 years older than me) married me off to my uncle (who is only 4 years older than me) around the ripe age of 7, but my toilet paper veil was the extent of my wedding experience.
My single mother raised me to appreciate a good man, like my Poppa, but independence was our style. You can imagine my surprise when I met Justin on July 10, 2014 and knew within minutes that I HAD to spend forever with the most loving, patient, attractive, smart, etc. man I'd ever laid eyes on. This was the man my family prayed for.
Thank the Lord, he felt the same way. Well, it took him a year and some change to realize it, but on January 1, 2016 he asked for my hand in marriage (in Central Park and from morning to night, he planned the most incredible day, but this post will be long enough without getting into those details.)
So the adventure began. "Wait. I have to like... plan a wedding..." I thought. Sheer panic ran through my body. What are the rules? Colors, dresses, bridesmaids, caterers, videographers and photographers, OH MY! I began my research and scrolled for miles on Pinterest every night. T'was a daunting task for a new NYC resident whose family was in a different time zone, worked a full time job and was trying to start a non-profit all at once. Alas, my superhero of a mother helped me take this bull by the horns and organize my absolute dream wedding + celebration.
Some of my most wonderful memories through my life happened in the state of Colorado. Ski trips with the family when I was younger in Breckenridge, (DON'T EAT THE YELLOW SNOW IT'S NOT A SNO CONE) Aspen in high school for a summer trip with friends, Vail for another ski trip in college and the night after I met Justin, I was headed to Denver for a trip with my dad and brother. Sitting by the fire, surrounded my mountains, Justin and I would talk on the phone for hours, as if we were in high school all over again.
I pitched the idea to my mom. "Is it crazy to do a ceremony with just the family in Colorado and then do a reception at home?" It was indeed crazy, but that became the plan.
Let's fast forward to wedding day, shall we?
That morning was peaceful and relaxing. My Fiance had sent Starbucks and flowers over with my mom & I put on Dave Barnes, "Good Day for Marrying You" on repeat. Our hair + make up artist came over to get us all dolled up and really, we just went through our checklist and enjoyed the morning together. Hummingbirds hovered around the windows and the weather was perfect. A small chill in the morning, but as soon as the sun touched your skin, it felt like a hug from Jesus. Colorado weather is my favorite.
My sisters played board games and our videographers + photographers captured our precious moments. My something borrowed was my Grandmother's jewelry, something blue was the sapphire in her ring, something old was my great grandmother's handkerchief and something new were my shoes! Grandmother, mom and I all had a heartache at once when we all wondered what my Poppa would think of all of this. He passed unexpectedly 9 months prior & it was still a mystery how we all managed to survive without him around. We were missing our "standard" of a man. I'm so thankful that the Lord had someone for me that reflected many of his characteristics.
Justin sent a gift over for me, and I sent one over for him. Mine was a beautiful rose gold necklace with our wedding date engraved and a LV purse I'd been dreaming of for years. His was my precious grandfather's Rolex. Justin felt the weight of the sentiment and felt so humbled when he opened the original box that Poppa had when he first celebrated the success of the business he built from the ground up.
It was time to load up + move out! Off to the first look. Shoutout to my mom for helping me morph into a could so my dress wouldn't drag the ground on our way to the spot!
After that, we may have gotten lost on the way to the ceremony, but only 15 people were waiting, so I wasn't as worried as I would've been had it been a chapel full of friends + family.
My dad walked me down the dirt road (aka: aisle) to the tune of Johnnyswim's "We Can Take The World" to my tall, handsome, precious fiance who would become my husband. Side note: we found our ceremony spot the day before when we were just exploring, so I'm thankful that part worked out juuuust in time.
We exchanged our own vows and enjoyed the gorgeous scenery with our immediate family. Our best cheerleaders.
Three weeks later, we invited all of our friends and extended family to celebrate our marriage in Lafayette, LA. God performed miracle after miracle during my wedding season, because we found our reception venue 5 days before the actual reception. Why would we do that, you ask? Well, we planned on having the reception at my parent's home and on my wedding day when we were all blissfully enjoying the Colorado weather, their house was flooding in the crazy, unforeseen Louisiana floods. Non stop rain didn't originally concern us, until one of my mom's friend's said, "We have to use a boat to get to your house." So the three weeks in between was actually us scrambling around trying to find a venue and other last minute details, praying that we wouldn't have to cancel it because many people were coming in from out of town.
God is good and our venue was the most beautiful place I could've ever asked for, probably even better/easier than if it had been at our home anyway! We still wanted to honor our friends and show them how much they meant to us, so our bridal party attended a welcome party the night before and we treated it all the same, only they didn't walk down an aisle. I gave my bridesmaids a color and they picked their own dress. We all got ready together the morning of the reception and drank mimosas out of disco ball cups.
My absolute favorite part of the reception was the video. Because we wanted our guests to see what the ceremony was like, we projected a 5 minute video onto a screen and had a vocalist sing "ILYSB" by Lany during the video. Then, we were announced and came out for our first dance.
Since we had already had our wedding night, we decided not to have a grand exit, but a grand entrance instead! Our guests each had sparklers and stood around in a circle during our first dance as husband and wife.
Then, we cut the cake, drank some drank and danced the night away!!! We didn't sit down once and as everyone warns, it was all a blur. I absolutely loved having our ceremony and reception separate, so we could pack as many sweet memories into one season as possible. I want to do it all over again, but I'll just keep looking at these photos and videos instead. Sigh.
If you'd made it to the end of this post, congratulations! I'm 2.5 hours in of typing, and now plan on taking a nap. Thanks for coming down memory lane with me and if you have any wedding questions, I feel like I learned SO much during this season. Happy to answer :)
Cheers to a lifetime of adventure and non-traditional living with the most genuine, Jesus loving man, Justin Glenn.
#GlennForTheWin #GeauxingGlenn #GoneGlenn