When Friday starts off with a little Tex-Mex lovin’, you know it’s going to be a happy morning. Captured by Anne Marie Photography, this backyard fete is filled with fun, and the best part? The entire family rolled up their sleeves to make it happen. From the tree-hung poms to the colorful maracas (shaken for a kiss!) to the giant papel picado backdrops, this day of love turned out to be a sweet homemade party.
From the beautiful Bride…My wedding was a mesmerizing merger of dreams – mine, my (now) husband Rick’s, and both of our families’ – especially our dear mothers. In the end, though, it could not have been more perfect, and I had very little to do with it. My dream “whimsical Tex-Mex” wedding was a true team effort, and my gratitude to every person who contributed will never fade.
Rick and I had toured all the major wedding venues in San Antonio before choosing to have the wedding at his parent’s beautiful home. It was an easy choice: a sprawling yard, no set vendors, no curfew, and, of course, it fit our budget! Rick’s older sister Thea had been married in the backyard in 2009, and it was so utterly lovely. We felt truly blessed when Rick’s parents agreed to host. Then, we started planning.
When I say “we,” I really mean everyone except for me. I was the anti-Bridezilla: the rarely opinionated, remote bride. I was off at Harvard Law School in Massachusetts while my future husband and our mothers did all the heavy lifting. I really cannot emphasize how much they did for me. I would express a vague idea – “I would like the yard to glow” – and my mom procured hundreds of mason jars, candles, and twinkle lights within days. Rick and his brothers personally strung the trees in the yard with the twinkle lights. It took almost two months of weekends dedicated to this task to complete it. Thea had the brilliant idea to use potted flowers as the base for poles to string up festoon lighting over the dance floor, another key element of the wedding I envisioned.
Rick’s mom, Laura, and her dear friend Keith, an event designer, were the most instrumental in creating my dream of “whimsical Tex-Mex” in the back yard. Laura had the brilliant idea to frame the decorations around papel picado, Mexican paper doilies. She found beautiful pastel papel picado to hang in the tent. Her most genius idea, however, was to create three giant foam-core papel picado pieces, customized for the wedding with our names and wedding date, and set them along the fence. Although this was Mama Menchaca’s brain child, it took literally the entire extended family, including many dear friends, to make the project happen. Setting up the giant papel picado and hanging the decorations in the dinner tent on the day of the wedding took the manual labor of a small army of Rick, his brothers, and some of their closest friends. When I saw the final product as I walked down the aisle, I was overwhelmed with tears of joy and gratitude. It looked perfect!
The wedding was full of heartfelt touches that made the night unforgettable. My mother had the inspired idea to order maracas in my wedding colors, and to add little tags that said “shake at the kiss.” During the ceremony, as Rick and I first kissed as husband and wife, we were surrounded by the cheerful thrum of those colorful, festive maracas, enveloping us in the love of friends and family. Rick’s parents had arranged for a mariachi band to play during dinner, which was gloriously festive (and generated some of my very favorite photos). Rick’s brother Ryan and my sister Taylor gave amazing Best Man’s and Maid of Honor speeches, which had us in happy tears the entire time. For the first dance, my father-in-law came to the rescue. I couldn’t decide between two songs: Ben Fold’s “The Luckiest,” one of my favorite songs of all time, and the Ronette’s “Be My Baby,” the song Rick and I consider to be “our song.” Rick’s father had the perfect solution: do both songs! Our DJ spliced them together, and we cried profusely and laughed hysterically throughout the first dance.
When I say the wedding was a team effort, I really mean it. It would not have happened without the blood, sweat and tears of the Menchaca and Mallory families. Because of all the inspiration, resourcefulness, creativity, and pure manual labor poured into my big day, it was a dream come true. Lucky for us, the dream was captured perfectly by Anne Marie Photography, so we can relive it for the rest of our lives.
Photography: Anne Marie Photography | Coordinator: Your Wedding Your Way | Cake: Cathy Young | Catering: Absolutely Delicious | DJ: Flipside Productions | Venue: Private Residence | Bride's Dress: Blush Bridal Lounge | Floral: Amanda Masson | Music: Terra Vista Strings | Rentals: Aztec Events