Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Wedding at The Gingerbread Meetinghouse

Crystal and Daniel knew they had found 'their' place as soon as they saw the Gingerbread Meeting House in Shelby, NC. It is truly a lovely location. The covered patio was perfect for their wedding and quickly converted to the reception area.
I don't have photos from the actual ceremony but here's the set up.
After the ceremony, while the wedding party took photos, guests were invited inside for cocktails. Tables were quickly moved and chairs placed.
I had time to wander around before the ceremony and take a few photos.
Doesn't this cake look delicious!

And one of my very favorite things.
Love the Super Heros!
All dressed up.
I didn't want to interrupt the photography session 
but did take a quick photo.
I did not get a photo or Crystal and Daniel but this is a photo of a photo.
It's obvious these two will have lots of fun together.

Dana and Milt - Married in NC Mountains

Oh yes, the secret it out. More and more couples are realizing the beauty of North Carolina and choosing to travel here for their wedding.

Boone offered the perfect location for Dana and Milt, who traveled from California.

Like many couples, they choose to have their intimate wedding at a rental house.
What a view from the deck.
Here's the lovely bride, escorted by her father.
We began the ceremony by lighting a Memorial candle for Milt's mother.
These two were more than happy to share their first kiss as husband and wife.
You just know it's going to be a fun time with cake toppers like these.
And napkins like these!
What a perfect way to celebrate.

Monday, October 21, 2013

Private Wedding - Melinda and Tony Married at RiverMist

I am the luckiest woman in the world! Maybe luckiest isn't the right word. Some would say fortunate but on second thought, the correct word would be blessed. I have a wonderful husband, fantastic children, and four lively grandchildren. That would be enough for anyone. But I get more.... I get to be part of life celebrations and share in the joy of other people. It is truly an honor when couples choose to share their special day with me.

When requested, and my schedule allows, I travel throughout North and South Carolina officiating wedding ceremonies and other life events. I love going to the many beautiful places and meeting wonderful people.

Many couples are looking for a low-key simple wedding. A quiet place in nature where they can focus on each other and make promises privately. Our retreat center provides the perfect setting.

Just ask Melinda and Tony....

We are both so happy with each other and yes, it is taking a while to get used to everything. I have been busy getting my name changed and that in itself is a challenge {and I keep signing my old name - I guess it takes everyone a while to change}.

Our wedding was perfect, I have told as many people as I can about how wonderful you guys are and how easy and relaxed and perfect you made everything for us. I cannot thank you enough!

I hope to see you guys again, we want to come back to that wonderful "cabin" for our anniversaries to come. We will stay in touch. Again, what a wonderful wedding it was for us - just what we wanted.

Thanks and I wish the best to both of you, Melinda and Tony

I love getting emails and notes like this. It keeps reassuring me that I'm in the right place, doing the right thing.....
Melinda and Tony, soon to be Mr and Mrs.
It was a beautiful fall day, full of love and anticipation.
These two were holding on tight.
Rings were blessed.
And exchanged.
Nothing is sweeter than love; nothing stronger, nothing higher, nothing wider; nothing happier, nothing fuller, nothing better in heaven and earth; for love is born of God... 
Love is devoted and thankful to God, always trusting and hoping in him.

Friday, September 20, 2013

Switzerland Inn Wedding - Ashley and Brad Married

 Ashley and Brad
September 14, 2013

The day could not have been more perfect for a fall wedding! Blue sky, warm weather, a beautiful bride and handsome groom!

 I have visited the Switzerland Inn several times and love the beautiful landscape. I knew that it would be a wonderful location for a wedding and was so happy that Ashley and Brad asked me to officiate their wedding.
The colors were vibrant.
Brad and his groomsmen were so relaxed.
So much in love.
I wanted to include this photo to show the back of Ashley's wedding gown.
And her beautiful train.
The planning and work was over. Time to enjoy their day!

Monday, September 9, 2013

Interfaith Minister in North Carolina

All authentic spiritual traditions, at their core, are committed to the common values of peace, tolerance, wisdom, and love for all creation.  Whatever our diversity, including those that are humanist and have no basis whatsoever in religion, we all share a common experience that is universal. 

As an Interfaith minister (sometime referred to as non-denominational), I have an understanding of the world’s major wisdom traditions, practices, and rituals. I serve others in informal encounters, as well as in formal ways, including my passion, as an officiant of life celebrations.

This past weekend I had the honor of co-officiating a Jewish Christian ceremony at the Peninsula Yacht Club at Lake Norman. Religious backgrounds were equally important so Emily and Jonathan wanted their ceremony to reflect both traditions

The ceremony contained all the elements of a Jewish wedding. Rabbi Ettin chanted the Hebrew blessings (I read the English translations.) The Ketubah was signed, the celebratory glass was broken at the end of the ceremony. However, it was much more. Bridesmaids, Anna and Katherine, shared readings during the ceremony, including a passage from Paul's letter to the Corinthians. Wedding vows were exchanged, which is not normally included in a Jewish wedding.

For me, the most touching part was when the mothers offered their blessing as part of a handfasting. After I tied the ribbon, the mothers read:
Blessing of the Hands   

These are the hands of your best friend, young and strong and full of love for you, that are holding yours on your wedding day, as you promise to love each other today, tomorrow, and forever. 

These are the hands that will work alongside yours, as together you build your future. These are the hands that will passionately love you and cherish you through the years, and with the slightest touch, will comfort you like no other. 

These are the hands that will hold you when fear or grief fills your mind. These are the hands that will countless times wipe the tears from your eyes; tears of sorrow, and tears of joy. 

These are the hands that will tenderly hold your children. 

These are the hands that will help you to hold your family as one. 

These are the hands that will give you strength when you need it. And lastly, these are the hands that even when wrinkled and aged, will still be reaching for yours, still giving you the same unspoken tenderness with just a touch.

What a wonderful way to start a marriage. And hopefully, after their exotic honeymoon I will have photos to post.

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Lake Eden Wedding - Tracy and Joe

The weather was not looking good on August 17th. when I arrived at Lake Eden Events. There has been so much rain this summer and the tread was continuing.

Fortunately it's easy to track storms and predict the 'downpours'. Tracy was hoping the rain would hold off just a little longer.  That was not to be. The staff showed her the radar and the rain was supposed to start around the time of her ceremony. Time was running out and the chairs had to be set up. Tracy made a very wise decision and and moved the ceremony into the barn where the reception would be held. Just a reminder to have a backup plan for your outdoor wedding.
And who could be too sad with this!
The barn was absolutely lovely.
Guests were asked to add their thumbprint to the new family tree.

 You just have to love Etsy. What a clever ring box.
And Pinterest. The decorations were perfect.

'I promise to be true to you in good times and in bad, in sickness and in health. 
I will love and honor you all the days of my life.'

 Tracy said the weather wasn't important, she was marrying the love of her life.
That was all that mattered.
 I don't really think there are two less fish. 
Now there are two fish swimming in the same direction!

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Ashley and Rod - Just Married

It was a perfect summer day for Ashley and Rod's wedding. They choose
Wedding Day at Troldhaugen for their processional.
I have to show a couple photos of Ashley's jewelry and headpiece.
I just love bird cage veils.
Can you tell they were holding on tightly?
As part of their ceremony we included a handfasting.
When a couple joins hands, their destinies are tied into one future.
Once the ribbon was untied, it was time to exchange wedding rings.

I give you this ring as the symbol
that I have cast my lot with yours
That I am bound to you always
Through my love
With my soul,
and with all my heart.
Time for kissing. 
And more kissing. 
Love the new rings and the beautiful feather bridal bouquet.
One last photo from inside our cabin.
Off to begin their new life as husband and wife. 

And I just have to share this review that Ashley posted on Wedding Wire:

Planning an out of state wedding can be stressful, but Victoria and her husband are the most gracious and wonderful people. My husband and I threw together a wedding at the last moment- we changed our minds on what we were doing, and at the end of the day, just wanted a private ceremony. 

I contacted several people, including Victoria. She was the first to respond, and offered the best service. Her prices are lower than ANY of her competition; we were looking at North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Oregon, Connecticut, and California. Even though she had family in town, she still performed our ceremony. 

It was completely customized; I know couples with traditional weddings who didn't get to build a personalized ceremony the way we did. And the actual ceremony... it was perfect. Everything was flawless, and she and her husband are the most gracious and kind hosts! The property is beautiful, and the pictures are taken with a professional camera. Everything about them is 100% professional, with a low cost! 

I have told several of my friends who are looking at wedding venues to talk to Victoria. I was nervous and worried about setting up an out of state wedding, but this service was FLAWLESS. I'm in Tennessee, and we drove 5 hours to get to North Carolina. All we did was show up and enjoy our private moment.