300 people came to witness us officially become a family in March 2009. We/I planned the wedding myself, and this was BEFORE Pinterest (probably a blessing in disguise). It was a day full of laughter, fun, and love. Get ready to view a lot of photos!
We got married at our church, Fellowship of the Woodlands, in a glass chapel that was absolutely breathtaking. I found it by googling, "glass chapel+Houston, TX." It was kismet.
The church had a Bride & Groom's quarters so everyone was able to get ready there. A special shout out to my sister, Susan, who not only did my hair, but also styled Cody's.
I love that all three of my nieces were there, that it took all six bridesmaids to tighten my dress, & that I still did my cousin's makeup on my wedding day (I love giving her grief about that).
*FUN FACT: We bought a foreclosed home a month before our wedding and were in the process of renovating it. Our next project was to reface the fireplace, but we were having a hard time finding a tile we loved. Lucky for us, both the bride & groom suites had a beautiful glass & stone wall, so beautiful that I mentioned it to Cody on our way to the reception and he immediately interrupted me and said, "I was going to mention that to you too! For the fireplace?!" (Our love for home decor knows no boundaries!). When we came back from our honeymoon we called the church office and found who installed that glorious backsplash, and we indeed installed that on our fireplace.
While the ladies finished getting ready, Cody was able to take some pre-wedding photos
As a gift, our amazing friend, Justin Pena, strummed his acoustic guitar for the entire ceremony.
I could hear it as I stood in the back room waiting to make my entrance.
I love that Kellie spritz some binaca prior to exiting. Always looking out for Cody
The wedding party made their way to the alter. Our nieces defiantly stole the show.
Our ceremony was simple and traditional. I walked down a rose sprinkled aisle, both my parents by my side, to a song Justin wrote just for me, as I made my way to Cody, who was indeed crying. The church was designed to block the windows when everyone stood for the bride, so Cody couldn't see me until I entered the church. I couldn't even look at him because I knew if I did I would cry too, so I waited until I was almost at the end of the aisle, and I was right. I started to tear up.
After my father "gave" me to Cody, we stood in front our loved ones and made a promise. A promise to stick it out during hard times, to rejoice when times were good, and to remember that we're making a commitment to ourselves, to each other, and to God. Then we sealed it with a kiss.
Like I stated earlier, I wanted our ceremony to be traditional. I wanted to take what we were doing very seriously. That being said, the minute we were presented to our family and friends as husband & wife, that's when the party started! Katrina & the Waves’ song “I’m walking on Sunshine” queued up, and our entire wedding party, us included, danced out.
FUN FACT: A groomsman and an usher bought the wrong color shirts and didn't realize it until the day of the wedding. Luckily, our other usher was able to swap shirts with our groomsman so everyone would match. Looking back, we would've went with simple white button ups!
Our reception that followed was decorated with center pieces Cody and I put together, which laid on top of the overlays my mother sowed, next to a candy table Cody's mom crafted.
Since we had friends that DJ'd for a living (shout out to the Hendleys!), the decision to have a DJ over a band was a no brainer, but we also had (drum roll please) KARAOKE! The majority of our friends & family are AMAZING singers so it was like having a live band, and having 20+ people on stage all singing, "Hey Jude" remains one of my favorite memories to date, and probably why it's my favorite Beatles' song. *FUN FACT: Our RSVP cards included karaoke slips to allow our guest to sign up for songs before the wedding so our DJs could be prepared and have a line up ready!
Another proud moment was when I went to investigate a loud commotion coming from the bar area. As I got closer I realized I was witnessing my groom's feet in the air. He was indeed doing a keg stand... The crowd of men put my new husband down and turned their attention to an annoyed and irritated bride. My response? "Um, WHAT THE HELL? THE BRIDE GOES FIRST!" Which was met with bellowing cheers, and yes, I too did a keg stand on my wedding day. My new family can be seen holding my legs and that's my father in-law working the pump. We keep it classy!
Our first dance was to Al Green’s “Let’s stay together,” We took lessons at Arthur Murray Dance Studio for a few weeks. Something I highly suggest if you're not a dancer, plus it's a good workout!
*FUN FACT: The choreographers shortened our song and up'd the tempo to make it the perfect first dance. Unfortunately, the CD they provided wasn't compatible with our DJ's equipment forcing us to dance to their digital file... This resulted in us being slightly off beat and, even better, running out of dance moves halfway through the song. We looked up at Vicki (our DJ) and simply stated, "That's all we got," and laughed off the dance floor while the song was still playing. It was "perfect."
I loved dancing with my dad and will cherish these photos. My only regret was not allowing him to pick the song. If you're reading this and haven't gotten married yet, PLEASE allow your parents to pick the song they want to dance with you to. Cody did just that, and now every time I hear Elvis I picture him & his mom swaying & singing together. It's better & more meaningful than just picking a generic song you think is right for the moment. Please trust me. Your future self will thank us!
"Cody. Good luck buddy!" Was how my dad's speech concluded and the Miles' men that followed stayed in suit. Patrick's was short & sweet, "I love you." Lance mentioned my eyelashes, and Cody's dad spoke about how proud he was. My sister could barely get through hers due to tears, but we could feel the raw emotion, which was enough for us. Each speech was funny and sentimental.
In Texas we have a Bride AND a Groom's cake. The bride's cake is usually more traditional, while the groom's cake is more whimsical and fun. Cody has been welding for years, so when he found this mother & daughter in-law duo that bakes adorable cakes out of their kitchen, we knew we had to book them! We think they did an amazing job duplicating his welding hood and they even surprised us with the "Miles" welding machine! His was chocolate and each layer of "mine" was a different flavor. Our favorite was the raspberry filled, I think that was the bottom (biggest) layer.
*Cake Tip: It's tradition to eat the top tear of your wedding cake on your 1 year anniversary, so make your top layer the most basic flavor and icing- it'll freeze better, plus taste better thawed! So skip the filling in the top layer!
Another favorite moment (seems to be a lot of those in this post) happened during the garter toss. In addition to a garter, I also planted a 'little' surprise... An EXTREMELY LARGE pair of panties! Every guy was desperate for them, diving to catch it, but when the garter that followed was thrown, they all stood there staring at it in disgust. Derek finally took one for the team and picked it up.
My ladies did not disappoint. I love that Melissa (black dress) volleyed the bouquet behind her, basically throwing it into sweet Megan's arms. Her face is priceless!
Another Texas tradition is "The Money Dance!" This is where people line up and "pay" to dance with the bride. Wow. Typing that out made me twinge a little because it sounds a little, "prostitute-y" but it's really fun and yet another way for people to help the newlywed couple start their life off right!
We cut the cake, w danced, we sang, we got married. Now all that's left to do is exit as man & wife.
Thank you everyone who came to celebrate with us. There aren't enough ways to say thank you for making this day what it was. Freaking epic. Thank you for your support, your laughter, and your love. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you!
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