Remember that adorable #StyleMeBlooper photo we shared last week? Well, this ladies and gentlemen, is the real wedding behind it. And it just happens to be my beautiful sister-in-law, Jessica. Who I met when she was 17 years old, desperate to get out of the house to go hang out with her friends. Fast forward over a decade and here she is. The most beautiful, kind, lovely person I know who married one of the most handsome, gracious, funny guys I’ve ever met. Set in the beautiful Hay Adams Hotel, it’s everything you love about a classic ballroom fête with no shortage of fun little moments planned by Karson Butler Events. Justine Ungaro snapped the photos, Josh Gooden filmed the day and that bride made even more stunning by Amie Decker Beauty? Oh and there is so much more right here!
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From the Bride… It was a gorgeous day filled with the love of our friends and family, many of whom took part in the festivities to make every moment uniquely special. The laughter and tears of our nieces and nephews kicked off the day as they ran down the aisle as flower girls and a ring bearer. Our good friend gave us the gift of music as he shared his outstanding musical talent on the piano. He played his own personal rendition of mixing Cannon in D and Sweet Child of Mine by Guns and Roses as I walked down the aisle with my dad. Right before my dad and I stepped onto the aisle, he recognized the rock song playing on the piano and he said, “Oh, that’s cool,” bringing a huge smile to my face knowing he was by my side.
My husband and I were lucky enough to have our dear friend travel from Cambodia to officiate our wedding, bringing jubilance and serenity to the day. To add to the wonderful moments of the ceremony, both my brothers and my godson spoke during the wedding bringing tears to my eyes as they provided my husband and me with advice and blessings for a lifetime of happiness. Once my husband and I shared our own vows, we danced down the aisle to the music of Sweet Caroline – a hometown favorite – as our friends showered us with bubbles.
After the ceremony my husband and I enjoyed laughing and dancing in front of the White House as our good friend Justine Ungaro took incredible photos to capture our happiness. All of our friends and family watched from the rooftop of the Hay Adams Hotel as we danced into our first few moments as Mr. and Mrs.
When my husband and I joined the party on the rooftop of the Hay Adams I was once again reminded that I married my best friend. We entered the room wearing leather jackets and goofy sunglasses, jamming to a Mayer Hawthorne song called, Her Favorite Song. During our first dance (Donovan Frankenrieter – Dance like nobody is watching) my husband surprised the crowd by ripping off his coat to reveal a giant eagle stitched into his tuxedo shirt, while I ripped off the tulle skirt of my wedding dress to wear a white cocktail dress. My husband and I giggled as we kicked off the night of dancing.
During the reception we were showered with love from our sisters – the Matron of Honor and the Best Woman – as they gave touching speeches that made us burst into tears and laughter. We would not be the people we are today without them.
The day would not have been complete without the support of my husband’s Marine Corp buddies. That evening they gathered together to welcome me into the family. Unbeknownst to me, they coordinated my surprise “promotion” to the Wife of a Marine, with my father-in-law (a proud Marine) leading the service as all of the Marines stood at the position of attention, a few of them wobbling. I was in awe that I was in the presence of such remarkable men.
I will never forget my last dance with my sister and mom. With them in my life I know I will always have best friends to carry me through.
As I danced with my mom and sister, I saw my husband boogieing with his mama – nothing but smiles – and I realized how lucky I am to be part of so many wonderful families.
I am blessed to have Abby Larson as my fabulous sister-in-law who made the whole day happen. Let’s just say, I kind of had an unfair advantage :)
Photography: Justine Ungaro | Cinematography: Josh Gooden Cinematography | Event Planning & Design: Karson Butler Events | Floral Design: Edge Floral Event Design | Wedding Dress: Tara Keely | Shoes: Audrey Brooke | Hair & Makeup: Amie Decker Beauty | Calligraphy: Laura Hooper Calligraphy | Lighting: Frost Lighting | DJ: DJ D-Mac & Associates | Wedding Venue: The Hay Adams Hotel | Babysitting Services: White House Nannies | Decor: Peabody&Co | Decor: Better Off Wed | Paper Goods: The Dandelion Patch | Paper Goods: Minted | Rentals: La Tavola | Rentals: AFR Furniture Rental | Rentals: Party Rental Ltd.