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Monthly Archives: May 2012

Aside from the Kentucky Derby, this weekend also holds another super-fun celebration: Cinco de Mayo! When Bee Photographie sent us this Florida wedding filled to the brim with colorful details, we knew it would be perfect to share with you this week, so grab some chips and guac, sit back, and enjoy the heartfelt fiesta of Gabriella and Jonathan! (Don’t mind if I do!)

How much do we adore these colorful bridesmaid dresses? A lot. A whole lot.

Did you write your own vows? If so, what was your favorite phrase, verse or line? We did, and here is a snippet from Jon’s vows: “I promise to love you for who you are, but more than that, I promise to love you for who God has in mind for you to become and to spend my life challenging you to get there. I promise to cry with you over loss, and dance with you to celebrate life and I promise to try my best to always make you feel as pretty as you look right now. I promise to love you, really and truly love you, for the rest of my life.”

Who else loves Gabriella’s cute short dress? I went shopping with my mom and tried on a bunch of long dresses. The dresses were beautiful, but I would put them on and feel all stiff and awkward. When the woman brought out a cute, ‘50s-style short dress, I put in on and immediately started dancing. My mom knew that it would be the one we’d bring home that day.

One of my best friends growing up, Erin, spent days making a multicolored Day of the Dead cake. She also made about 100 buttercream cupcakes with quirky mustaches and sombreros to continue the Mexican theme.

How did the two of you meet? Jon and I met when we were studying abroad in Madrid, Spain. Though we both went to the same school in Florida, it took both of us traveling all the way over to Spain to meet.
Describe the proposal. I used to collect snow globes. Since my first job out of college involved me traveling all over the country, this collection started to get ridiculous. I ended up with an insane collection of around 75 snow globes of various sizes. When I moved from Boston to NY, the snow globes did not make the cut and were left in a storage unit I had commandeered in the basement of my apartment building. On a work trip to Boston, Jon secretly collected all 75 snow globes and brought them him on a vacation we had been planning to Tree Bones resort in Big Sur California. Like many fiancés to be, Jon did not sleep on the night before, and in the middle of the night he laid out snow globes of all the cities we had lived in or traveled to together. Each snow globe had a note explaining its place in our love story. On Easter morning, Jon woke me up at sunrise telling me the Easter bunny had come. As I found each snow globe and its note, I began to think this might be a little bigger than a normal Easter gift. The final snow globe I found was a cheesy, but amazing, custom-ordered snow globe with the first photo Jon could find of us together on one side and the most recent photo of us on the other. The placard under the photo read “Anywhere” and it was placed on the ridge overlooking California cliffs and the Pacific. Jon came from around the corner, and said something sweet and sentimental that neither of us can remember for one second because our hearts were beating so hard and we were so nervous. I do remember Jon asking if I would marry him. And I definitely remember saying yes.
In what month did you get married? March
How many guests attended your wedding? 160
Tell us about some of the songs you used throughout your wedding. Our first dance was to “Breath of Love” by David Mayfield Parade and our last dance was to “Hey Jude” by the Beatles.
Describe your wedding flowers: They were bright, colorful gerbera daisies, carnations, and tissue-paper flowers.
Our favorite detail of the wedding was: The colors. It felt very vibrant and lively. It felt like us. We also had a wall made of entirely paper flowers that my amazing girlfriends helped make – it was beautiful.
What Southern details or traditions did you include in your celebration? What was Southern about your wedding? Definitely the barn! It was fun because Jon’s family is from Iowa and my family is Latin so we wanted to create an atmosphere that represented both of us – a Day of the Dead barn wedding.
What range did your wedding budget fall into? $10,000-$25,000
What is the one thing you are most happy you splurged on? Our photographer and photo booth.
What was your most memorable moment about your wedding day? Undoubtedly, our last song, “Hey Jude.” We had an enormous dance circle with all of our family and friends lifting us up in the air and dancing around us. It was pretty epic. Also, when I ripped my dress! Eeek! I was getting really deep in the classic “running man” and put my heel right through the back of my dress. My amazing Aunt Maggie was immediately to the rescue, pulling bobby pins from her hair and pinning the back of the dress up.
What advice do you have for folks currently planning a wedding? Just love it. Dance. And when it rains, dance and laugh. And don’t forget to eat something.
What’s next for you as a couple? What are you looking forward to in the future? We are slowly figuring out what we are supposed to do with the rest of our lives. But we get to do that together – which is really exciting.

Photographer: Bee Photographie // Videographer: Bee Photographie // Venue: Family friend’s barn // Florist: Ashton and Christy Mayer // Wedding Cake or Dessert Baker: Erin Gilbert // Salsa Favors: The Jam Stand // Caterer: Chef Scott // Bride’s Hair Accessories: Ashton Mayer // Bride’s Jewelry: Nordstrom // Hair Stylist: Stacey Wick // Makeup Artist: Kristy Alonzo

emily Written with love by Emily
  1. avatar Madelynne Miller reply

    One of my favorite weddings ever featured on here! I love the personality and color and how unique it is! Not to mention the bride – she is gorgeous! And the bridesmaids dresses…and the paper products. It’s all to die for adorable!

  2. avatar molly reply

    i am in LOVE with this! such fun!

  3. avatar AshleyHH reply

    Very fun!!! But I got all excited when I saw a barn in florida… but its a friends!! Finding a venue will be the hardest thing for my wedding!!

  4. avatar Jenny (Captured Photography) reply

    Love this! So unique. Happy Cinco de Mayo everyone!

  5. avatar Friday Wedding Thoughts | Bridesmaids and Weddings reply

    […] via Bridesmaids and Weddings on […]

  6. avatar Color: The New Trend | Palettes of Perfection reply

    […] assorted bridesmaids dresses, I am totally all about this progression!  This featured wedding on Southern Weddings Magazine blog caught my eye for sure.  Jon & Gabriella liven the traditional wedding day black-and-white […]

  7. avatar Tim Duncan reply

    Whoa… all these colors! I LOVE IT!

  8. avatar Megan reply

    I’m in love with the bridesmaid dresses! I’d like one for myself! Do we know where to find them?

  9. avatar :jon & gabby: backyard barn wedding reply

    […] these 2 have become so dear to our hearts. jon & gabby have the sweetest love story and we are so happy to have captured it and become friends with them along the way. their wedding was the kind that makes my heart beat just a bit faster… backyard, barn, and diy details through and through! their wedding was featured on southern weddings and can be viewed here! […]

  10. avatar Cassie reply

    Gorgeous wedding! It would be nice if you credited the invitation designer. All too often graphic designers get left out of the credits. Who did it?

    • avatar Emily reply

      Hey Cassie! We do our best to credit invitation designers, because we want brides to be able to find their amazing work! Unfortunately, we have to rely on the information the featured bride (and sometimes her wedding planner) gives us. In this case, however, I believe the invitation is by our friends at Minted! Hope that helps!

  11. avatar Yessenia Diaz reply

    I love the pictures of this wedding, absolutely beautiful!!! I want to have this theme as well for my wedding, does anyone know where they got the bridesmaid dresses? Did they go to Mexico to buy them or order them online?

Southern Weddings reserves the right to delete comments which contain profanity or personal attacks or seek to promote a business unrelated to the post.  And remember: a good attitude is like kudzu – it spreads.  We love hearing your kind thoughts!

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Continuing on with this week’s Kentucky Derby festivities, we thought it would be fun to put together an updated version of last year’s red rose round-up! (Newer readers, check it out here!) The Derby makes us want to dig up all sorts of horsey inspiration, but possibly none is more elegant and classic than weddings filled with red roses, the traditional flower of the winning horse’s wreath.

To be sure, red roses at weddings can be… outdated when done wrong. But they can also be lush and gorgeous when done right! Here are some of our favorites:

Top left photo by Michael + Anna Costa, red rose and calla lily bouquet by Elizabeth Messina via Wedding Chicks, middle left photo by Lyndah Wells via Style Me Pretty, middle right and bottom by Ali Harper

Bouquets, check. Moving on!

Gentleman in boutonniere photo by Ali Harper, red rose-lined aisle photo by Elizabeth Messina, red rose boutonniere photo by Michael + Anna Costa, red and pink centerpiece photo by Jenna Marie Photography via Style Me Pretty, simple rose centerpiece photo by Some.Sweet Photography, tall centerpiece photo by Elizabeth Messina via Wedding Chicks, low centerpiece and cake photos by Adam Barnes via Southern Weddings

What do you think, ladies? Would you use red roses in your wedding? Would you use only red roses? Comment and let me know, and stay tuned for another Derby-themed post soon!

P.S. Can’t wait for one more piece of Derby inspiration? Check out a favorite surprise wedding here + here!

Ali Harper and Adam Barnes are fabulous members of our Blue Ribbon Vendor Directory!

emily Written with love by Emily
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Our friend Katie, from the popular blog Marriage Confessions, drops by twice a month to share her take on Southern married life. We hope you enjoy, and be sure to visit her at her blog for regular doses of humor and adorable-ness!

I made a “to do” list a few weeks ago. I needed to go grocery shopping, finish grading a test my students took this week, send a thank you note to a kind friend, remember to take my son’s nap blanket to his daycare, clean the melted crayon out of my dryer, and register for a 5k I want to run next month before the fee goes up. Typical Wednesday night things to do.

But when my husband came home from work that night, my plans changed. He’d had a really rough day. He’d had to fire an old college friend who just wasn’t cutting it at work. He had known it was coming. He’d been preparing the paperwork and preparing for the “we have to let you go” meeting. But he hadn’t prepared for the long drive home after the meeting, when he would be along with his thoughts for the first time all day. It was a long drive home, he said.

He helped me feed the kids and we both gave them baths together, and I think that was good for his heart. I cleaned up the dinner mess while he read bedtime books and tucked the kids in bed, making sure bunnies and Mr. Bears were in the appropriate arms before kissing them and turning out the light. And I think that was good for his soul.

By the time he came downstairs, he looked a little better. He opened a beer for us to share while he sat at the kitchen table watching me cook our dinner – his favorite, steaks and potatoes, a last minute change from my carefully planned weekly menu, because he looked like he could use a favorite.

As I moved easily around the kitchen, he told me about his day. About the terrible meeting where he’d let her go, about how hard it is to be the boss, about how he worried what this would do to the morale of the rest of the staff, about how guilty he felt. I really didn’t have to say too much. I knew he just needed someone to talk to, someone who loved him no matter what decisions he had to make. I offered a few words of encouragement, reminded him how proud I was of him for being such a kind person who even has these moments of doubt, but mostly, I was just there with him.

After dinner, we moved to the back deck and sat on our steps, talking about the kids and the upcoming visit from the Easter Bunny. I told him about a book I was reading, and he told me about a new kind of pool pump he thought we should get. We sat outside for an hour before we headed up to bed. Before he fell asleep, he told me he felt better and knew that he would sleep soundly. Before I fell asleep, my mind went back to my to do list, sitting on the kitchen counter, untouched all night. There wasn’t anything on that list that couldn’t wait, I decided, and I, too, slept soundly.

In the eight years that I have been married, I have learned that best laid plans are often set aside for the sake of my marriage. And I’ve learned that when I put other things before the needs of my husband and our relationship, everything just kind of falls apart.

At the core of everything in my life, there is my faith and there is my husband. I have other obligations, other priorities, other responsibilities, of course. But my marriage always comes first. It is the foundation on which everything else is built. I don’t feel bad when I put everything aside to sit and hold my husband’s hand. I don’t feel bad when I we occasionally get a sitter for the kids and have a date night. I don’t feel bad when I cancel other plans because I haven’t had a night at home with Chris in over a week. I don’t feel bad because I know that when my marriage is happy, everything else in my life is better.

We make time for the things that are important in our lives. I encourage you to make time for your marriage. Making your marriage a priority not only builds a solid foundation for your relationship, but it says to your spouse, “You are more important to me than anything else.” Love is strengthened over bathtubs full of kids, shared beers, and back deck conversations, I promise you.

Make your marriage a priority. If you don’t, who will?

See more from this lovely engagement session by Paige Elizabeth in its Facebook Friday album!

emily Written with love by Emily
  1. avatar madelynne miller reply

    Great post – very insightful and helpful for a newlywed like myself :) I had to work late last night and I came home to a husband that had revamped dinner plans into something he could manage – and I was so grateful to have a husband that would take the reigns in the kitchen :)

  2. avatar molly reply

    this is such a great post – so important. you and your spouse are each other’s number ones. so so so so so important to make each other a priority always!

  3. avatar Lindsay (Young Married Mom) reply

    So true. My husband and I try to do the make-time-for-each-other-in-busy-weeks thing, too, and whether it’s intentional or spontaneous, the next day is always a little easier. Great post!

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