For a couple who fell in love in Japan working for Disney, this wedding is beyond perfect. It’s a fairy tale all wrapped up in a gorgeous Japanese Garden in California, and it’s gorgeous. Enough to make just about anyone believe in Happily Ever After. The always talented husband and wife team, The Youngrens, captured every striking detail, which we’ve put into a story book of sorts (okay, you’ve got us, it’s the gallery) for your afternoon daydreams!
Matthew and I met while working for the Disneyland Resort in California back in June of 2004 when we were paired up at a rehearsal for the Disney Electrical Parade which we both performed in at the time. I remember the choreographer had to keep telling me to stop staring at him! We started dating almost immediately after, but our time was cut short when I left in August to work for the Tokyo Disneyland Resort in Japan. Even though we only dated for three months, it was plenty of time for me to fall in love with him and be completely heartbroken boarding my plane. But the story obviously has a happy ending right?! Five months later Matthew was boarding a plane to join me at the Tokyo Disneyland Resort and the rest is history. It took literally three seconds for the butterflies to kick back in and we spent the next five years together living and working in Japan. When we returned home to California our love for each other only grew stronger and in June 2010 Matthew proposed! I walked in the front door to find a slide show playing of all the memorable times we had over the past years and Matthew came out wearing his suit and tie and got down on one knee. It was perfect. We celebrated that night by going to the place we met and watching the fireworks.
When we started looking and venues we knew we wanted to incorporate our time in Japan and a Japanese garden seemed like the perfect fit. After looking at several Japanese gardens, the Earl Burns Japanese Gardens at Cal State Long Beach stole our hearts. It has a beautiful pond with Koi fish, a Zen garden, and the perfect amount of space to make for an intimate night with family and friends. The colors maroon and navy were chosen since they are Matthew’s favorite colors and also because they added just enough color to the already beautiful and lush setting in the garden. Add in a Cherry Blossom cake, origami cranes for the table seating, and of course some Karaoke we had the perfect wedding!
Our guests came from around the world including Holland, Australia, and Japan so we had to make it extra special. That task was taken on by my Man of Honor, Adam, who put together a very special surprise “Disney” show including a mini parade with glow sticks, costumes, and of course some guest participation! Matthew and I were completely surprised and filled with happiness. Our amazing photographers, Jeff and Erin Youngren, didn’t miss a beat and captured the whole thing with only a moments notice. Of course this was just one of our favorite memories of our wedding! Some of our other favorite captured moments include the boys rocking out at Karaoke, our first dance with on our private stage over the water, and of course or my grandpa walking me down the aisle. Overall, I could not have asked for a more perfect wedding and ours friends and family still talk about how fun and memorable it was!
Photography: The Youngrens / Event Designer: Katherine Pan, (562)985-8889 / Florist: Buttercup Floral, 877-670-1700 / DJ: Fly by Night DJs / Cake Artist: Rossmoor Bakery / Venue: Earl Burns Miller Japanese Garden