I wanted to start this post with a picture of what the arbor we got married under looked like BEFORE the rain:
My mother and I spent the last week before the wedding making all of the paper flowers, so I was a bit bummed out when they didn't look this good for our wedding pictures. The best part about these though was the time my mother and I spent at my kitchen table talking, laughing and enjoying each other's company. It's a memory I will cherish and hold dear to my heart for the rest of my days.
Wendell and I are blessed to have a group of incredibly talented friends; from musicians to bartenders, their talents added plenty of spice to our special day. We were fortunate enough to have our ceremony graced by the musical talents of Eddy & Heather Green. I walked down the "aisle" to their rendition of Billie Holiday's 'There is no greater Love'. I wish I had an audio sample for everyone to hear (and for my ipod).
My sisters have always been my best friends and completely spoiled me growing up. My little brother was my partner in crime and we were the best of friends, practically attached at the hip until my early 20's. Kristen is one of the very few friends I've ever had that I can actually say is a BEST friend. I loved having them with me for the few days they were here. The only thing missing was my other sister Maribel who unfortunately wasn't able to make the trip. I would've loved for Wendell's family and the rest of our friends to have met her as she is such an essential part of my family and who I am (as is the rest of my family).
Despite my father's horrendous allergies I must say that I could see how happy and excited he was on this day. While we waited for the heavy rain to pass he kept everyone warm and entertained with shots of tequila and his comedic prowess.
I love the fact that my Dad used the umbrella to keep himself dry, haha. I'll never forget the look on Wendell's face when he first saw me. At that moment nothing else existed. I couldn't feel the rain; all sound was muffled nor did I see anyone else. For that moment it was just me and Wendell and the sound of my pounding heart in my ears.
A few final words from my Dad before "giving me away".
Carl was the most perfect officiant. There was a window of time where we weren't sure if he was going to be able to make the trip to marry us. This was one of the things that I was really stressing over. I just kept thinking that there wouldn't be anyone else that could fill his shoes. Luckily, he was able to make it. Wendell may have written the ceremony, but no one else but Carl could have delivered those words with such eloquence and sentiment behind them.
My Dad hugging Wendell, this was HUGE for me. My Dad didn't like any of the guys I dated, ever. Then he met Wendell, and hugged him on the very first day that they met. I should've known then that he was "The One".
It rained through the entire ceremony. It was a warm, light rain with dime sized raindrops. The air smelled of dewey grass which was only intensified by the humidity.
Before exchanging our rings I had my Mom and my "maids" bless Wendell's ring. A few extra good vibes are always a good thing. The best part about that was when my sister handed my Mom the ring. A HUGE clap of thunder rang out, almost as if the gods were stamping the blessing with their seal of approval.
Wendell wrote our vows and ceremony. It was something we had planned on writing together, but he called me back into our computer room one day and had written everything out. It was perfect, I didn't want to change a thing. My favorite part was a line from a song he had written for me that he included in our vows....le swoon!
We handed out maracas for everyone to shake in celebration during our first kiss as Mr. & Mrs. Wendell Hess. It was a perfect touch for our Mexi-themed day.
Oh, the aftermath of bright red lipstick!
I've heard so many horror stories on in-laws, but I couldn't have gotten a better deal. It's like having two sets of parents!!! I absolutely adore this woman!
I loved that we kept our ceremony short and sweet. It allowed us more time to enjoy moments like the one captured in this photo, as well as time celebrating our union with our loved ones. Which of course is never enough time.