Our Wedding Ceremony

I'm not sure I can accurately describe what it's like to get married. And I don't mean the entire experience of having a relationship, planning a wedding, and doing things that "married" folk typically do. But walking down the center of a crowd that has seemingly parted for you, sharing your deepest feelings in front of your loved ones, committing yourself for the rest of your life to someone who still gives you butterflies; it's an out of body experience to really submerge yourself in the act of getting married. I was sure I knew what to expect and feel when I walked down the aisle towards Andrew but nothing could have ever prepared me for what I felt when I finally locked my gaze into his gorgeous blue eyes. So cheesy but hey this chick tells it like it is. And his eyes really are that blue.

I adore these photos of my Dad and I walking down the aisle together. The plan was to hold hands, not link arms, but I think he couldn't help but hold on with his other hand. And that was perfectly fine with me. I've never seen my Dad look so proud or happy nor have I ever been so proud to call him my Dad. I especially love the third photo from the top; one the righthand side is my college gymnastics coach Kathie, peering down at what looks like to be the back of my gown. If anyone has seen me at my complete worst and watched me evolve into the woman I am, it would be her. On the left handside of the photo, is my Dad nudging my brother Josh halfway through our walk together. It was a cute little way to let him know we love him. And that we could see him sitting in his aisle seat with his cute little smile-smirk. I love you guys so much and am entirely thankful I've been blessed with you as family members.

Our ceremony was special to us as we completely built it based on what represented us as a couple. We left out traditional ceremony readings and long winded verses and instead included a poem, kind-hearted and good-natured advice from our officiant and we exchanged personal, handwritten vows. Incorporating both of our Moms and all of our guests into the ceremony was equally important, so we asked our officiant if we could put a twist on the standard ring ceremony. Andrew's sister and her husband took our bands and walked them to the back of the room. One side of the room was handed my band and the other was given Andrew's. The guests were asked to pass the rings along and bless it with words and love before passing it on to the next person. Once the rings ended up at the front our moms came forward and passed the 'blessed rings' to our officiant to give to us. We made sure to do this during the signing our of license so guests wouldn't feel restless or bored; it worked perfectly and was one of my favourite parts of the day.

My sweet girlfriend and one of the people I've become closest to in just the past few years did a reading near the end of our ceremony. It was important for me to include her in the most meaningful part of our celebration. She read a Louise Cuddon poem called "I'll Be There For You," and did it perfectly; I could tell she had practiced and practiced. I found myself smiling bigger and bigger which each line she read as many of the things in the poem had actually happened during Andrew and I's five years of dating. A few guests laughed at specific points in the poem and it was the perfect way to wrap up our ceremony before the declaration of husband and wife.

{The Details}
the wedding party walked down the aisle to: Nothing Fancy by David Barnes
the processional: Winter Song by Sara Bareilles and Ingrid Michaelson (love)
first kiss as husband and wife: You Are The Best Thing by Ray LaMontagne
vows: Personal. We wrote them ourselves and kept them private until the ceremony. Mine are here.
readings: Love is Patient, Love is Kind (Andrew's pick) and "I'll Be There For You" by Louise Cuddon (mine)
Andrew I loved marrying you!

What was the best part of your wedding ceremony? 

17 Lovely Comments:

Megan said...

i just heard sarah Bareillas the other night with maroon5 and got the chance to meet her..she is so lovely..wish i knew you used her in one of your wedding songs! i totally would have told her!

drooling over your photos.

Nikki said...

Your parents are adorable. I love the ones of you and your Dad.

My favorite part of the ceremony was our vows. My Husband is afraid of public speaking, but he did so well, and was so sweet.

Ashley said...

sara b and ingrid are two of my favorite artists, beautiful song choice. beautiful pictures and gown! i hope these posts have warmed your heart and allowed you to relive that happy day!

ASHLEY said...

This is so sweet!!!! I loved that you walked down the aisle to something non-traditional. I did too :) My fav classic composer is Debussy so I walked down to Claire de lune. My fav moment was my cathedral length veil catching on the concrete and my daddy picking it up and carrying it for me so I could walk! (never thought about lace sticking to concrete!)

Happy Wednesday Rhi! Loved the balloons as well! You seriously had such a beautiful wedding!!!

christine, just bella said...

Aww, so sweet. This brings back great memories of my ceremony which was, by far my fav part of the whole day! I was so giddy with emotion and I swear my cheeks hurt from smiling through the whole thing. We did a ring warming ceremony too and it was such a great element. It took longer than expected, but the dj played music and it gave us a chance to step back and enjoy the moment.

You look so beautiful and happy, I can feel the love from your photos! Your wedding is beyond beautiful, Rhiannon. Loving the recaps, I feel like I was there!

Leslie Ruth Petree said...

Oh my, these pictures and your words have me all teary-eyed with joy! You were a beautiful bride and in spite of having to call an audible due to the rain, it looks and sounds like the ceremony was perfection.

My favorite part of our ceremony was just before I walked down the aisle. My husband's favorite movie is "Lonesome Dove" {he's a Texan} and the theme song is a beautiful orchestral piece that starts with just a trumpet and french horn. I had some dear friends arrange it and play it as a surprise for him as my processional. The look on his face was priceless and one of my most favorite memories of the day :)

*You can see it here: http://leslieruthpetree.blogspot.com/2006/09/when-planning-wedding-became-really.html

April a.k.a. "A. Liz" said...

Beautiful, beautiful, beautiful. Thank you for sharing all of these details!

Our first dance will be to "You Are The Best Thing" by Ray Lamontagne. :)

Liesl @ FabulousFashions4SensibleStyle said...

Loved reading this and I agree on some of your favorite pictures from those you posted...I especially love when they captures other people's reactions! :)

You looked just beautiful and your dad does look so proud...love it! Love that you included your songs too! My younger sister's 1st dance song was "You Are The Best Thing" by Ray LaMontagne and I love that you used Winter Song by Sara Bareilles and Ingrid Michaelson...I have that one on my list! :)

I just can't get enough of your recent posts and pictures!!!

Liesl :)

Sarah said...

You make SUCH a beautiful bride!!! My favorite part of our ceremony was definitely the music. I'm pretty sure I had it planned for about a year before we were even engaged, ha. I am loving these re-cap posts!

Jesse {GoodGirlGoneGlad} said...

I'm loving all of these glimpses into your wedding Rhi! You were a beautiful bride!
Hugs friend!

xxShivvyxx said...

Your dad is so cute i want to give him a massive hug! x

Scientific Housewife said...

The best part of our wedding was us kissing and then walking down the aisle to a string trio playing "All You Need Is Love". It was amazing :)

Great photos!

Kirby said...

I wish I were a fly on the wall during your ceremony! We are having a traditional catholic wedding ceremony so pretty much everything is out of my hands (which is kind of a relief) we do get to choose which readings we would like and we get to pick songs... from a predetermined list, but I will still try to make it beautiful and customary to 'us'. we have decided to not see each other until the ceremony and I am so excited to have my dad walk me down the aisle. *sigh* I'm so excited for all this to happen to me!

xo Kirby

Andrew said...

Its funny because if I scroll through the first set of pictures of you walking down the isle with you dad, it feels so real as you were getting closer, closer and closer (nervous, nervous, happy).

And the last picture makes me extremely happy!

Love you!


Nicole-Lynn said...

Oh goodness, I cant even describe how happy I am for you and I barely know you! haha The second and third picture of you walking with your dad are just breathtaking! The look on your face is priceless!

I also adore the black and white photo of you two signing your license!

Wild and Precious said...

a sign that you should move to nashville... dave barnes goes to my church... infact, i might even call him a friend :)

love seeing the crowds faces in these pics -- so evident that they are confident and rejoicing in yours and andrews love!

Char said...

I absolutely love the blessing the rings idea. How original! Our first dance song was "You are the best thing", so I absolutely love it! So beautiful!