This is a wedding that just exudes happiness. The kind of wedding that is sooo filled with joy and sooo overflowing with love-filled moments, it will put one seriously large grin on your face. It also happens to be a day that is chock-full of pretty, from the lush blooms crafted by Bella Floral to the adorable bride and groom (see: the description below) to the breathtaking Fair Weather Farms setting. And honestly? That’s a combination that can’t be beat. See it all captured by Ryan Bernal right here in the full gallery.
From the Bride… While wiping the blur from my heavy eyes, and stretching out my legs and arms as far as they please, I heard birds chirping. I thought to myself, “birds don’t sing in the rain! Its NOT raining!” Springing out of bed, almost too fast for my feet and legs to brace my body, I peeked through the blinds only to see mist, fog and rain… The weather man spoke truth. I was hoping he was lying. He usually is, but not this time. He had been reporting 80% chance of rain all week on our wedding day. The entirety of that week was spent wrestling with my expectations of the “perfect” day and reminding myself that no matter what the weather is, I am becoming one with Jordan. But despite my efforts, I spent the week grieving the sun. Yes, I know it sounds dramatic, but I can be dramatic. Yet, on that early morning, seeing the misty rain, I wasn’t upset. I was peaceful. I knew I was marrying my best friend and nothing could snatch the smile from my heart or off my face at that moment. But the sun tired itself from hiding and peeked out its bright face the moment we arrived to the venue. It turned into the most beautiful Spring day that we all prayed for.
Our wedding day was more lovely than I ever imagined. I wasn’t one that “dreamed” about my wedding day. All Jordan and I knew was that we wanted it to be a great day of celebration, laughter, and joyful tears with the people we do life with. That included most of our vendors. Mostly everyone that we chose to be part the day, we either were close to or acquaintances with. We wanted to feel most like ourselves on our wedding day and being surrounded by people that we knew and knew us definitely helped. Our wedding coordinators Crevolyn and Emily with “Wonderful Events” made our lives smooth as butter while planning. Its a mother and daughter working together in making wedding planning fun and easy. We were SO thankful for them. In deciding a venue, we considered how much we love being outside, so we desired a place that would cater to that love. The first time we saw the venue in Monroe, we knew it was it. We saw a ginormous tree hanging its assortment of green over a stone ring built around its base. Still, cool waters sat peacefully behind the towering giant casting green and blue reflections for our delight. A screened pavilion lined with twinkling lights welcomed us inside. After venturing around the grounds, discovering hidden nooks in every turn, we decided to have our ceremony under the tree and the reception in the pavilion.
Our wedding had a vintage feel to it. There is something very special about old things. They have a story to tell. I love that. The idea took root when I started coming across vintage items, jewelry and clothing from some of my family members. I’m a sentimental person, so those things meant the world to have on our wedding day. My veil, garder, lace wrapped around my bouquet, hair piece and “going away dress” were made from my mothers wedding dress created and designed by Christopher from “Christopher’s Bridal” in Gainesville, Ga. I also wore her wedding shoes and pearl bracelet, and carried my great grandmothers wedding ring, which was beautifully wrapped in my bouquet by “Bella Flora.” The two women of “Bella Flora”, Susan and Renee, are fantastic. They did all the floral and design. Their creativity and willingness to portray all what we envisioned blew us away. There were other pieces of vintage items throughout the venue that added some sweetness as well. The tables in the reception area were scattered with handmade doilies made by my great grandmother and all the old books that were stacked in an array on the tables were from my father-in-laws book collection. Silver Candelabras, old tea pots, lanterns, burning candles and twinkling lights filled the reception area. One of my favorite finds was the chandelier that we hung from the tree we joined our lives under. Susan and Renee, along with some other great help, hung moss and wired it so it was lit as the sun went back into hiding.
Joyful, dreamy and blissful are the words I would use to describe the day. Ive heard from others that the day flies by, so being mindful of that, I attempted to hold each moment and detail in my mind, being present in conversations, intimate glances, hard belly laughs, my leaping heart, salty tears absorbing into my cheeks and moist cake and icing being stuffed up my nose. Thank you, Jordan.
Mimosas fizzing, steaming curling irons and an aroma of orange blossom perfume teased my senses while preparing to see my future husband. Tiffany from “Tiffany and Co. Hair Salon” in Gainesville was there to assist with our hair and my best friend Olivia who is a Mary Kay consultant did our make up. Anticipating this moment and being with your closest friends and family is so special. I will cherish that time we had in prayer, laughter and conversation before I ventured down with Ryan, our photographer, Teejay, our videographer of Anchor Heart Films and my dear friend, Kelli, to play, what felt like, hide and seek with my groom before our special moment.
I wasn’t sure where we were meeting and I didn’t care. I just wanted to see him. Following Ryan, with shaky hands, deep breaths and a full heart, I made my way down towards the lake into one of the hidden nooks. Seeing Jordan standing alone, waiting for me, his bride, was overwhelmingly beautiful. I had giant butterflies in my stomach like it was the first time I was seeing my husband, yet, in that moment thinking of all the things we had been through. Touching him on the shoulder signaling him to turn around was a thrilling moment. There were tears, giggles and many sighs of relief. I had completely forgotten that Teejay and Ryan were even capturing this moment. That is what is wonderful about working with them. They capture who you are and give you the freedom to be just that.
After seeing Jordan from our “first look” I was much more relaxed and just READY! As the ceremony approached, things got real. Really real. Our officiant was Scott Smith. He had walked us through our premarital counseling, so it was an honor to us to have him there. He and his wife have impacted us as a couple in a tremendous way. Jordan and I have always wanted to write our vows. Hearing the promises and heart from your best friend and life partner in front of friends, family and our Lord is extremely powerful. Racing down the isle as Mr. And Mrs. Holcombe was so fun. I wanted our pronouncement as husband and wife for the first time to be extra special, so I shaped antique music paper into a cone and secured them with hodge podge glue and filled them all with rose petals. I attached a note to each cone saying “When Mr. and Mrs. Holcombe walk your way , throw the petals and yell hooray!” They were given to all the guests on the inside aisles and it made for such a sweet and unforgettable beginning of marriage.
Then the feasting, dancing and celebration began. When walking into the pavilion, we were engulfed by waves of love and support. We truly felt celebrated and immensely blessed . Luna’s restaurant in Gainesville was our caterer. They were amazing to work with, the food was delicious and their display was flawless. We filled our bellies and hit the dance floor soon after. I felt like my feet were going to fall off after the reception. We danced late into the night ending with a run through a tunnel made of the best friends, family and sparklers.
Photography: Ryan Bernal Photography | Cinematography: Anchor Heart Films | Wedding Coordination: Wonderful Events | Floral Design: Bella Floral | Catering: Luna's | Makeup: Olivia Galloney | Hair: Tiffany's | DJ: EastCoast Entertainment | Groom's Attire: Belk | Officiant: Scott Smith | Bridal Shop: Christopher Bridal | Desserts + Cakes: Kristen's Memorable Cakes | Wedding Location: Fair Weather Farms