Monday, July 25, 2011

The Things We Do For Love - July Wedding at Chimney Rock State Park

Sunday July 24th is certainly a day I will remember for a long time! Hopefully I will have photos to post soon. I took just a couple with my iPhone. 
Like many areas, we have been experiencing a heat wave. Last Friday our thermometer reached 114 degrees. Now even if it's off a little, that is still hot. Last Friday was also the day I was stuck in traffic on I 85 for 3 1/2 hours with the car thermometer reading 103 degrees. Not fun. 

Yesterday, with all the heat, I was a little concerned about the walk to Hickory Nut Falls at Chimney Rock State Park. It's been a dry summer as you can tell from the lack of water flowing.

Thank goodness, Josh and Whitney were smart and planned for a 10:30 ceremony. I arrived at the park around 9:30, wanting to get a head start and give my sweat time to dry before everyone arrived at the waterfall. The walk is not normally too bad and luckily there was a breeze.

I'm always concerned when a hike is involved and remind everyone to bring plenty of water. While walking the trail, I had to stop a couple of times to catch my breath. I was looking so forward to the cold water I had packed in my bag. It was my incentive to keep moving. When I arrived at the base of the falls, I placed my bag on the picnic table ready to reward myself. Imagine my surprise when I could not find my water. I was mumbling to a park guest that I couldn't believe that I had left my water behind. The kind hearted soul offered me some from his bottle. I declined his offer but it's always reassuring when strangers come to your rescue.

The area is so beautiful. The breeze quickly dried my perspiration and I was ready when the wedding guests started arriving. And lucky for me, they brought extra water. Josh and I chatted a bit while we waited for Whitney's parents to arrive. Once everyone was in place, it was time for the wedding.

"We have gathered here, surrounded by the beauty of nature, to witness and bless the joining together of this man and this woman in Holy Matrimony."

Like many couples Josh and Whitney wanted a ceremony that focused on love. They chose several Bible passages to be included.

"As the Father has loved me, so I have loved you: abide in my love. If you keep my commandments, you will abide in my love, just as I have kept my Father's commandments and abide in his love. I have said these things to you so that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be complete. This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you."

Whitney and Josh made promises, exchanged rings and celebrated with family and friends. Now they are enjoying their first days of married life.

I will admit I was happy to get home and change clothes. Often, my husband, Guy, just shakes his head at me. After a wedding that requires physical effort he usually tells me 'you know you don't have to do this'. Sometimes I think that means, 'you're getting too old to do this'. He is a wise man and chooses his words carefully! It's not that I have to do it but I can't not do it. I know, I know, terrible grammar. Double negative but it makes my point.

I was a little tired yesterday but did get to try out my new pedometer. And after a little nap in the air conditioning I was good as new! Now... waiting for the next adventure.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Cheryl and Brian Get Married in North Carolina

Tonight is the night.
It's the creation of that land of eternity.
It's not an ordinary night,
it's a wedding of those who seek Love.

July 16 was not an ordinary night. For Cheryl and Brian it was a night of memories with promises made under the full moon. 
Like so many couples, Cheryl and Brian have families living in other states. Planning a wedding that could include everyone was nearly impossible. So they decided on a private wedding ceremony and will celebrate later with family and friends.

Cheryl and Brian wanted to include a ring blessing, using a special heart shaped stone they found on a trip to Yellowstone. They also wanted a way to symbolize the love and support of their family. They chose two stones near the ceremony site which will be presented to their mothers at a later date.

It was a perfect night for a unity candle.

And here’s the happy couple with their best man and maid of honor.

 And Cheryl just had to get in the water.

 What a fun couple. Check out their champagne glasses!
Happily Married!
Best wishes to the new Mr. and Mrs.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Shirley and Mike Marry at RiverMist

Dreams do come true! A few days ago I had the honor of blessing the marriage of two best friends.

Shirley and Mike contacted me about six months ago. They found my information over the internet and wanted to come visit our retreat center. They immediately decided that our river house was perfect for their family wedding. So perfect, in fact, they booked the house for four nights. (turns out that wasn’t enough and they added another night!) And they are already talking about returning next year for their anniversary.

The wedding took place on Friday evening and lucky for us there was a break in the heat wave we had been experiencing. There had been showers throughout the day but the rain held off long enough to get the dock beautifully decorated.

Everyone gathered around at the appointed time.

Here comes the bride!

And here’s Mike, watching his future wife walk toward him. It was finally time. The wait was over.

Shirley places the ring on Mike's finger as she makes her promises:

Mike, you are the love of my life and you are my very best friend. I give you this ring as a symbol of my love and my commitment to you. Just as this ring has no ending, neither has my love for you. I pledge to share with you my heart, my life an my love, from this day forward.

 Those who God hath joined together, let no man put asunder.

 After a few family photos, it was time to celebrate!

A nice candid shot. Yes, it's true we are finally married!
All I want is to love you
For the rest of my life....
To wake up every morning
With you by my side,
Knowing that no matter what happens
I’ll be able to come home
To your loving arms.

Shirley and Mike left a wonderful note in our guest book. I truly love what I do and it's an honor to be part of such a special time

Victoria and Guy, RiverMist is truly an amazing place. When Mike and I began to plan our wedding we wanted our wedding to be outside with family and friends. RiverMist provided us with a beautiful and peaceful place that we could get married and share our special day with our family and friends.

The moment Mike and I pulled up at the cabin we knew that we had found our place. Victoria was so helpful in helping us to plan and work through all the details. She kept close in touch through emails. She was very prompt to answer any questions we had. She provided us with many resources as she helped us to personalize our ceremony. She was very reassuring and was willing to share her wedding supplies with us.

As our wedding day got closer she stayed in touch to see if we needed anything. When we arrived at the cabin she had everything ready for us to decorate.
On the day of our wedding Victoria and Guy were very professional. The ceremony was absolutely perfect! Guy, you did an amazing job capturing our special day with pictures. Mike and I will cherish these pictures forever.

Victoria and Guy, you have a special place in our hearts. We look forward to coming back each year and spending our anniversary here. The five days we spent here, relaxing and fishing, were awesome.

The two of you are truly amazing and what you have created with RiverMist will be forever with us. We look forward to returning again soon to enjoy RiverMist and the peaceful and relaxing atmosphere it provides. Thanks for everything again. May God bless you both! Shirley and Mike

Monday, July 4, 2011

Waterfall wedding in NC - Pearsons Falls

Well, my day started off with a smile. I received this wonderful email:

Hello Victoria!  We are back in Florida and settling in.  John and I want to thank you so much for everything!  Our ceremony turned out wonderfully and just as we had imagined.  We weren't familiar with the local waterfalls and you couldn't have suggested a more beautiful location.  The weather was perfect (no rain) and much to our surprise we had the Falls all to ourselves.  Thank you also for helping us create our own personal vows and for creating the ceremony as a whole. 

It was so sweet of you to think about our 3 daughters by giving them the heart shaped stones to remind them of our stone toss and of our special day.  They loved them- they added them to the gem collections that they obtained during a gem mining trip we took when we were there.  Please, also give your husband a huge thank you for us as well.  I know that he doesn't usually go out on location with you so it was an extra bonus to see him there and for him to be kind enough to bring his camera along!!  We can't wait to see his photos! 

June 29, 2011 was a day that neither of us will ever forget!  Thank you for sharing it with us and for helping us make it so special!  Sincerely, John & Rebecca

I will have to start off by saying June 29th was a hot summer day. But the sweaty walk and the bug bites are now a thing of the past and what we have left are wonderful wedding memories.

When Rebecca first emailed me she had a vision of what she wanted for her wedding day. It took some effort and coordination but from her email I know she and John had their dream wedding.

Rebecca made her entrance, walking behind her daughters who were blowing bubbles for her arrival.

Because of the circumstances I was not able to meet Rebecca ahead of time. It was a pleasure to finally meet her face to face.

The wedding vows were very personal and kept as a surprise until the day of the wedding. Look at their faces. 

Rebecca promised to ‘sit through the never ending episodes of House and to act as excited when you play Justin Bieber songs for me’.

And John concluded his vows by promising ‘to spend today and all of my tomorrows, with you.  To infinity and beyond..’ Wedding vows don’t have to be totally serious and it’s always fun to add some personal touches

And what a wedding memory. The first married kiss in front of a beautiful waterfall.