Thursday, June 6, 2013

How did I love this? Let me count the ways..

Weddings are a bit like time...they just keep moving on, going forward and passing by, filled with moments that you  want to grab, hold onto, and say, "Wait, wait, wait! I want to look at you longer, savor this moment longer. I want to allow the lens of my heart to open, click and capture this second forever."  But, the day keeps moving forward, unfolding new emotions and memories with every second.  It's a beautiful place to be, but I floundered without my Nikon camera that was sleeping at the hotel, wanting desperately to capture the magical moments that unveil themselves at weddings. But, alas, without camera I had only my pen to dance across paper and spill out the treasured moments, memories and merriment.   Here are a few of those moments, captured simply with the lens of my heart,  a few gathered mementoes and photos from a phone. 

So, how did I love this?  Let me count the ways...

1. Wedding invitation on burlap colored stock, oozing creative graphics and a special font fashioned from the bride's very own handwriting. 
Invitation edited slightly to respect privacy

2. Reception invitation floating images of white balloons among trees, billowing with celebration.  Did they know that the illuminated parchment paper lanterns at the reception would billow, sway and gently dance in the soft evening breeze under trees ... echoing the invitation?

3. A soft as a breeze, laid-back Rehearsal Dinner PICNIC (yes!) in the park, with guests nestled on handmade quilts and comforted with oversized woven baskets brimming with gourmet vegan delicacies, wrapped in vintage looking linens and whimsical sentiments. Forks and napkins entwined with string laced tags carrying handwritten messages that played off the vows ..."fork better or fork worse".
6. The sun taking a bow to a cool, lighthearted evening dressed in vintage props, lawn games and an old fashioned popcorn maker pouring out fare for the guests, along with old-time movie candies, lollipops and  beverages. 

7. An unforgettable stretch of time when all the guests became one giant single listener, stretched out on quilts, as expressions of love from family and friends were given. And a groom totally smitten with his bride-to-be sharing his heart of love to her.   Oohhhh, a quiet pause settled in as he spoke, people sighed, fell in love again, and a baby softly slumbered in my arms.  Love makes time stand still.

8. Night wrapping itself around the the collection of quilts, turning the park amphitheater into an outdoor oversized screen,  filled with short film clips that entertained and reflected the creativity of the bride and groom. (The groom, a gifted creative @

9. Wedding day arriving with peonies, roses, delphiniums and meadow flowers, lovingly fashioned into bouquets by the groom's sister and friends. The delicate peach, cornflower  blue, periwinkle and ivory flowers holding a deeper beauty... each one was marked with the imprint of a sister's  loving hands.  Hands that selected each bloom and bud, wrapped linen strips around clusters of stems and graced them with embellishments from meadows.  Oh, how can the beauty of the love that went into fashioning a bouquet be captured in a photograph? It's a beauty beyond fragrance and flowers.
Love has it's own essence. 
And the sister's fragrance in each bouquet?  It- took- my -breath- away.  Oh, the fragrance of Chelsea everywhere.

10. Beaming Father of the Groom decked out in a crisp peach checked cotton shirt and pale blue bow tie. He glowed all week-end long.

11. Giddy Mother of  the Groom kicking up her heels in carefree joy as she heads to watch her last child marry. So, so happy!

12. Pensive Grandmother of the Groom, waiting to be escorted down a park path to her grandson's wedding, holding vast treasures of family memories and love to last for generations.

13. Multicolored strips of linen streaming from the altar area in shades of peach, cornflower blue and ivory  that filled with breeze, swayed and lifted their soft endings up in praise, as if on cue, while the couple voiced their sacred vows to God.  A sign from Heaven?  A soft sigh, "of this I am well pleased"?

14. And then again, that soft sigh from Heaven, as the newly wed couple walked away, up a grass lined hill.  A gentle breeze, catching the outer edges of the bride's ivory cloud of wedding gown, lifting it up in a wave that crested and billowed out with a carefree abandon that now also embraced the couple.  And as they disappeared from sight, a petite finale ... the  view of that never-ending line of miniature ivory buttons spilling down the slender bride's back, ushering them into their new life together.

15. Long strands of dangling white lights criss-crossing the night sky over linen draped tables filled with flowers, culinary delights and the sounds of sweet southern celebration.  A storybook reception wrapping itself along the back porch of an antebellum Victorian home and stretching out onto lawns of green, framed with black-eyed susan clusters whose soft yellow heads lit up the night.

16. Dancing, dancing, dancing ... the bride and the groom dancing the night away with feet in air suspension, arms in celebration and weightless bodies twirling, spinning and taking flight through the night. The bride stopping one time in mid-twirl to land a kiss of thanks on the cheek of her new mother-in-love.  Sheer delight!

17. Sizzling sparkler send off.

18. A parting gift, a favor.  Handmade Jams with whimsical tags that read... 
        "If Samantha & Josh were rich celebrities, their name would be ... JAM."


As I read the tag, I think of how rich they really are.  
Rich in relationships, family, and friends.  
And on this day, they are celebrities ... 
they are celebrated over and over and over.  
It's a sweet finale,  softly echoing an expression of love from long ago...
     " How sweet is your love, my treasure my bride."            
                                 Song of Solomon 4:10

Counting, counting, counting the ways I loved this,
A Velvet Lime Girl

P.S.  The groom, once a little boy, who I hunted with for "treasure" along sandy beaches, armed with a metal detector and high hopes, has now found a real treasure, a priceless gift from God...his soul mate, his wife, his bride.