Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Wedding Day: Ceremony

All I can say is WOW! I do believe our ceremony may have been my favorite part of the entire night, and that’s saying a lot because I haven’t even talked about the reception yet! To sum of the ceremony… it was picture perfect. The music selection was unique and beautiful with the parents walking down to “Wonderful Tonight” – Eric Clapton and the bridesmaids walking down to “We’ve Got Tonight” – Bob Segar. I rode in on a beautiful stark white horse and carriage with my dad to “The Blower’s Daughter” – Damien Rice and walked down the aisle to “Look After You” – The Fray. Aside from the music, the most unique aspect was the parents, groomsmen, bridesmaids, and myself all walked down from different angles of the plantation. Parents and groomsmen came from inside the front of the house down the stairs to their places, the bridesmaids were secretyly driven to the back of the plantations o they could walk from the front gates down the aisle, and I came around from the side of the house to the end of the aisle – the guests had no idea where to look the entire time, we were coming from so many different directions. It was completely inimitable.

Our awesome programs
The entire 30 minutes of time were truly magical. I could try and describe it all day long, but I’d never find the right words. Once down the aisle, we said our vows, which we wrote ourselves, and instead of the traditional “one at a time” vow readings, we transitioned back and forth, each saying one line at a time. It went a little like this: Tres: I promise to love, honor, and cherish you now and forever. Me: From this moment for the rest of our lives, I give myself to you completely, Tres. I take you not only as my husband and lifelong companion but as my best friend - the other half to my whole. Tres: I promise to support the decisions that you make both professionally and personally. Me: First and foremost, I promise to respect you. I have always thought of respect as the key in any relationship, and I promise to always value and love the person that you are. Tres: I promise to make you proud of the decisions that I make for us and our family. Me: I promise to always support you and encourage you in your dreams and goals and to work with you to help fulfill them. Tres: I promise to maintain good physical health, so that we may extend our time together on this earth. Me: I promise to put effort into our love - to stand by you on the bright days and the dark, to always compromise, and to always have the time for “us.” Tres: I promise to always be there for you; above all, I will be there for you; whenever you need me, I’ll be there for you. Me: Finally and most importantly, promise to love you more tomorrow than I do today and love you even more each day to follow. And if times get tough, to promise to pull these vows out, read them, and remind myself of what I promised you on this day. I love you now and forever. Tres: I promise to never take your love for granted. Vows said and rings exchanged, we wrapped up with a “Wine Ceremony.” These are very nontraditional, and I actually had never seen one before, which is why I wanted to do it. Our love of wine had a little something to do with it as well; I thought it gave the ceremony a lot of character. We poured a white and a red wine from decanters into a wine glass and both drank from the glass. The symbolism: White wine, fermented in oak barrels symbolizes a lingering taste in two souls for a long lasting love. Red wine represents a richness and love in two hearts. When combined, the color of the wine is rose, symbolic of marriage and everlasting love. I loved this part of the ceremony and we got compliments galore on how one-of-a-kind it was! The entire time I was standing up there, I remember thinking of all the friends and family members I had seen in the same place as I was on that day. I remember so many times looking at them thinking “that will never be me.” On that day, I couldn’t believe it was. I wasn’t nervous; I remember just being overly excited to be marrying my love. I actually watched our wedding video yesterday for the first time and couldn’t believe how overly joyous I looked. I was laughing and smiling like it was impossible to stop. Tres was as well. I think he was a little more nervous than I was, but definitely more eager than nervous. When we kissed, were introduced at Mr. and Mrs. Tres and Andrea LeTard, the feeling was unbelievable! We were MARRIED! We walked down the aisle to “Just Like Heaven” – The Cure and got in the horse and carriage. THIS could have possibly been the best part of the ceremony – completely full of surprises for the guests AND for us! So much happened that we had no indication of whatsoever! The carriage circled around to the front of the plantation home with the guests still seated. The song “I’ve Got a Feeling” – Black Eyed Peas began playing and everyone went crazy – getting out of their seats, dancing, and cheering. As the carriage came to the front of the plantation home, it stopped, and all of a sudden, streamers and confetti bursted from the top of the house all over me, Tres, and all the guests. And then out of nowhere fireworks went off at the back of the plantation. We had no idea any of that would happen, and it was so much fun and completely overwhelming in the best way possible! Our guests went nuts, exclaiming that was the most amazing end to a ceremony they had ever seen. I couldn’t disagree… A great start to the BIG party that was about to take place!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Wedding Day: Rehearsal at a Wonderful Venue

When we got out of our limos at Southern Oaks, the show was ready to begin. I really hate to call our wedding a show – we had no intention on it being, but that’s just the way Southern Oaks does things. The crew was all ready with their headsets and walkie talkies, and it was time to get down to business. We had one hour before the seats started filling in, and we still had to rehearse and take all family pictures. That seems impossible, right? Not at Southern Oaks.
All those hour plus wedding rehearsals I have been through in all my days of being a bridesmaid – Southern Oaks made it seem so pointless. They had a coordinator for the family, a coordinator for the groomsmen, and a coordinator for the bridesmaids. They each broke off into their three groups, went over the ceremony, did a quick walk through, and in 15 minutes, the wedding party was rehearsed and ready! Best rehearsal for a wedding I’ve ever seen!

Did I mention we had a huge staff taking care of our every need from the time our feet hit the front doorstep of the plantation?! There must have been 20 or more staff members taking care of us all night, and the best part was our personal attendants. Tres had his very own attendant who took care of him all night. I had my very own attendant who took care of me all night. And each of our parents had their very own attendant who did the same. Our champagne was always full, as they walked around refilling it if it got more than three sips below the rim. If we wanted a different drink, they brought it to us. If we wanted a certain food, they ran and got it for us. And even when Tres and I had no idea how to cut the cake during our cake cutting, they were there to show us how. We were treated like complete royalty! I have never experienced anything like it (and probably never will again)!

My sweet fam (brother, mom, pop)
Mine and Tres' entire families
Beautiful ladies of my family (aunt, cousin, me, mom, and grandma)
"The Shoes"... Ahhh!

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Wedding Day: Our Wedding Party

I will let the photos speak for themselves here. We had quite the attractive group! :)

Friday, December 17, 2010

Wedding Day: Photo Shoot in Jackson Square

The limos turned out to be beyond a great idea. Tres and his groomsmen were in one, me and my bridesmaids in another, and we were soon off to Jackson Square for pictures. Being crammed in the limos with our big dresses on was great bonding time for all the girls, and I’m sure the guys in their limo ahead of ours felt the same.
The best part about taking our photos in Jackson Square (aside from them turning out beautifully) was the fun New Orleans crowd cheering us on, congratulating us, and even stopping us to take pictures. It must have been fun for all the Sunday Funday partiers to see a huge wedding party walking all over the square. They were drinking and having a good time, and we were like their entertainment as we walked by. It was hilarious and flattering all at the same time!

Here are some shots of me and Tres. I will let the wedding party have their own post!