I watched one of my all-time favorite movies, Steel Magnolias, over the weekend, and was reminded of a particularly wonderful line: “Laughing through tears is my favorite emotion.” While there is so much joy that comes with a wedding, it can also bring up some sadness, especially when a loved one can’t be there. Megan and Ryan did the most beautiful job celebrating their love and all they had to be grateful for at their wedding, while at the same time, paying touching tribute to Megan’s late father. Don’t miss Megan’s heartwarming substitute to her father-daughter dance–it brought on a few tears in the Southern Weddings office. The emotions in everyone’s faces, captured by Happy Everything Co., show so clearly how meaningful and special this day was to everyone involved!
Ryan proposed at sunset on April 27, 2013 at our favorite beach spot. He pretended to lose his ID to get me back on the beach later that day, and while searching for it, we came upon a beautiful bottle with a message in it for me! The message was a list of reasons why Ryan loved me. It was so sweet, and when I read the last reason, he got down on one knee and proposed! I had never been more excited or felt so special!
Did you decide to do a “first look”? Why or why not? We decided not to do a first look because we wanted to keep with tradition.
What readings, if any, did you have at your ceremony? Our pastor read scriptures from Hebrews 13:4, Genesis 2:18, Proverbs 2:17, and my favorite, Song of Solomon 2:10.
Tell us about some of the songs you used throughout your wedding and why you chose them. I wanted all of the music to contribute to the intimate feel of our wedding. I love The Piano Guys, especially their version of Christina Perry’s “A Thousand Years,” so it was important to me to have a live pianist and cellist present.
Our favorite detail of the wedding was: The decor was our favorite. We mixed in lots of colors and things I loved. My mom collected most of it from yard sales and thrift stores, which was so meaningful and special. We also had family and friends help with specific projects that related to their gifts of painting or building things, etc. We tried to keep everything local, because we wanted to support the community I grew up in.
My dad recently passed away, and he had always talked about looking forward to my wedding day. In place of a father-daughter dance, I chose eight men that knew my daddy and loved Jesus like daddy. I wrote them each a letter several weeks before the wedding, asking them to be a part of my day. In the letters, I wrote about things I remembered about them and how they influenced me while I was growing up. They all agreed, and I chose the song “I Loved Her First,” which was sung by my daddy’s favorite cousin. The men had asked if they could pray a blessing over me and Ryan, and so they laid their hands on us and prayed for us and our marriage. My daddy would’ve been so happy!
How did y’all meet? Tell us your love story. Ryan and I were introduced through mutual friends in August 2011, and at first, we were not impressed with each other at all! Several months later, we reconnected with the help of our friends. Our official first date was in December 2011 and we have been together ever since! For a lot of our relationship, he was at Fort Rucker, AL, going to school to obtain his Apache pilot license, which has been his dream since childhood. I was working for a fashion designer in Santa Rosa Beach, FL. Ryan would come visit me on the weekends, and our relationship blossomed.
When did y’all get married? March 29, 2014
How many friends, family members, and loved ones attended your wedding? 150
Describe your wedding flowers. We wanted the flowers to be shabby chic and vintage-inspired. We used peonies, English roses, and tulips. My bouquet also included a red rose in memory of my daddy. The bridesmaid bouquets were all white, and my bouquet was a combination of pastel pinks, peaches, and mints.
Describe your wedding cake or dessert. We had three different cakes: almond, key lime, and strawberry. I wanted a vintage look with lots of pretty textures and colors, and we used different cake stands and all different cake toppers. We also had homemade ice cream and a groom’s cake that my grandparents made. The ice cream especially was a huge hit!
Did you have something borrowed, blue, old, and new? If so, do tell! My new was my dress, my blue was my shoes, and my borrowed and old were my parents’ wedding bands, which were tied around my bouquet.
What Southern details or traditions did you include in your celebration? What was Southern about your wedding? Since this wedding was an “away game” for Ryan and his friends and family, our goal was to show them our Southern hospitality and our love for Jesus. Since it was chilly, we offered shawls and blankets for people to use. We also played bluegrass music during cocktail hour!
What was the biggest challenge you had to overcome while planning your wedding? We planned the whole wedding from a distance. I lived in Missouri, while my mom lived in Georgia, where the wedding was held. We worked together though, and had a great time planning. I wouldn’t trade it for the world!
If you are comfortable responding, what range did your wedding budget fall into? $25,000-$50,000
What was one way you saved money or cut costs at your wedding? We bought all of the decor and details at yard sales and thrift stores to create the look we were going for.
What advice do you have for folks currently planning a wedding? Have fun with it and don’t stress over the little things. It will all come together.
What’s next for you as a couple? What are you most looking forward to about married life? We are just looking forward to being one family, and we’re excited for this next adventure in our lives!
Photographer: Happy Everything Co. / Videographer: Remedy Wedding Films / Planner: Cyndi Durham and Lindsey Watson Haynes / Venue: White Oaks Barn / Florist: Randall Adams / Wedding Cakes: Sweet Startt’s / Caterer: Du Monde’s Catering / Band: The Park Band / Bride’s Gown: Allure Bridal / Paper Products: Occasional Ink / Bride’s Earrings: BaubleBar / Hair and Makeup: The Studio at 120 / Bride’s Shoes: BHLDN / Bridesmaids’ Dresses: Alfred Sung / Men’s Attire: The Tuxedo Shop