The Day I Married My Match, Part 2

Four years ago, I was just a guy who had a crush on a girl who had a boyfriend. And I had to do the hardest thing I’ve ever had to do, which was to wait. And don’t get me wrong, I flirted with her…I just had little moments with a girl who saw me as a friend. And a lot of people told me I was crazy to wait this long for a date with a girl who I worked with, but I think that even then I knew that I was waiting for my wife.-Jim, The Office

Let me start by saying, wow! I’m overwhelmed by your comments. I’m so happy to be able to share the most important day of my life with you all. You guys have been a part of it from the beginning! 🙂 Second, this is perhaps the longest post I’ve written yet, and I apologize. There were just so many amazing moments that I had to share with you!

Now that we’re past the tearfest, it’s time for the PARTY! Ok, I won’t lie, there are still some tear jerker moments. Like when Match’s Mom and my Mom gave their toasts. Then the first dance, and the father/daughter dance. But I’m getting ahead of myself.

Let’s start with our grand entrance back to at the reception room. We were at the golf course for the ceremony and they had a golf cart ready for us to drive back up to the reception. Typically the groom drives the cart. But you all know I’m not your typical girl. So of course I drove it.

The reception room has a deck so all of our guests were leaning over the railing cheering us on as we drove up.  Then the DJ had everyone go inside the reception room and wait for our grand entrance.

We walked in to the song, “Ain’t That a Kick in the Head” by Dean Martin.

I wish I could remember what Match whispered to me that I found so funny.

I was so overwhelmed by the amount of love that just emanated from the room. I just kept saying, “Oh wow, oh how beautiful!” I can’t even describe what an amazing feeling it is to be surrounded by all of your loved ones in the same room, all standing and clapping for you. It was truly incredible.

I was so touched that so many of my friends and family took off time from their jobs to make it to the wedding. There were hugs all around as we finally got to see all of our loved ones. Right after that our coordinator ushered us over to the buffet table for food. I loved our day of coordinator. She came with the venue and she did such a great job of keeping the day flowing. She made sure we ate too! We are one of the rare and lucky couples that actually got to eat on our wedding day. Match even got seconds!

I know it doesn’t look that appetizing in the picture but I swear it was so good. I wish I’d had a better appetite. I was just too excited to eat. Plus my friend who warned us about the sweetheart’s table was right-everyone stares at you while you eat!

Then it was time for the toasts. My mom was the first to make her speech, and I was blown away with how calm and collected she was. I told her afterwards she should speak in public more often! She talked about the first time I brought Match home to meet my parents. She said watching us cook in the kitchen together, she knew he was the one for me. Cooking and eating are a big deal in my family and the way we worked so effortlessly together, she knew we were made for each other.

MIL was next to give her toast. It started off shaky, because she definitely doesn’t like to speak in front of people or be the center of attention. She started by talking about how when you have a child you want the very best for them. You want to make sure that as they mature they make the right choices. She said that she has no doubt that Match made the right choice, and will continue to make the right choices because he has me by his side.

I was trying to keep it together in this picture. I started bawling when she finished with that line. We hugged and there wasn’t a dry eye in the house.

Match got up, a little begrudgingly, because like his mom, he hates being the center of attention. I think he did a great job. He thanked everyone for being a part of our special day. He said he couldn’t be happier and that he was absolutely the luckiest man in the world.

After the toasts it was time for our first dance. It was sweet, but I have to admit, I wish we’d picked a faster song. I love our song, Then by Brad Paisley, but it felt like it went on for a long time. I think that was just because everyone was starring at us and I’m a terrible slow dancer. I kept laughing and saying I was going to step on his shoes. He kept saying, “I lead, not you!” Hehehe.

The second dance was the father/daughter dance with my Pops. I couldn’t help it-I bawled like a baby. We chose the song, “You’re Gonna Miss This” by Trace Atkins.

After a few minutes, Match and his mom joined us on the dance floor, along with his Sis Travel Girl and her dad, and my Mom and my brother. By then I think a lot of our guests were crying along with us.

Then it was time to celebrate! Everyone wiped their eyes and got down to boogie on the dance floor.

Everyone mingled and danced and it felt like the two families and all the groups of friends had known each other for years.

Birthday Twin made it along with his long time girlfriend. They seemed to enjoy themselves, though frankly I didn’t spend much time with them. BT and I have grown so distant over the last two years. Still it was nice that he was there and they had a good time.

Best Friend was there-he made the trip all the way from San Diego. I was thrilled he could be there. After our years of friendship and our crazy, messy history it’s so nice to still call him my friend. He gave me a big hug and said, “You got your M.R.S!” He used to tease me in college that I was going to school for my M.R.S. He said he was so glad I found such a good guy and that I truly deserved to be this happy.

We had a fun moment on the deck where Best Friend, Brazil’s Hubby, The Enabler, and Old Married Hubby convinced me to smoke a cigar.

Before I knew it, it was time to cut the cake. The coordinator told me how we cut the cake represented how we work together as a team. This was hilarious because I couldn’t seem to cut the cake, and after a minute Match said, oh let me do it. So I guess that’s how we work. He does everything for me! 😉

Immediately after cake we had the bouquet and garter tosses. This was another classic moment-my cousin’s girlfriend didn’t just catch the bouquet, she swiped it. Then she whispered to me, “It better work!” It was adorable and I couldn’t be happier for her. Of course I felt bad for Tahoe Girl who really wanted to catch the bouquet. If you look closely, that’s her hand desperately reaching for it. She knows her and Tahoe Guy will get married. They’ve been together for 9 years! I think he’s just waiting for the right time since all of the couples in our group are getting married and he wants her to have her own moment. Hopefully next year he’ll propose!

The garter toss was a surprise as well. I’ve always been to weddings where the guys refuse to catch the garter. By the way don’t I look completely in pain in this picture? Like he’s biting my leg and not the garter? Hehehe. I was just really embarrassed.

Best Friend reached out and snatched the garter so fast I didn’t even see it happen!

The rest of the night is kind of a blur. There was tons of dancing and laughter. At one point my uncles tossed me in the air. I really wish someone had captured that on camera. At the end of the night the DJ got everyone to crowd around us while we danced together. It was another moment where my breath caught in my throat as I felt all of the love surrounding us. It was the perfect way to end a perfect day.

The Day I Married My Match, Part 1

Today is the day my life begins. All my life I’ve been just me, just a smart-mouthed kid. Today I become a man. Today I become a husband. Today I become accountable to someone other than myself. Today I become accountable to you, to our future, to all the possibilities our marriage has to offer. Together no matter what happens, I’ll be ready. For anything. For everything. To take on life. To take on love. –Alex, Grey’s Anatomy

So there I was, getting laced up into my wedding gown. My hair and makeup were perfect and it was all coming together. My acne remedies had worked and my skin was flawless, yay.

I was managing to keep my cool and keep from crying. Then my mom walked in and saw me for the first time.

She couldn’t help but cry and then both of us were weeping happy tears. Then my aunties and cousin stopped in for a peek and some pictures. Then the rest of my girlfriends came in for hugs all around.

Family pictures were next and there was the mad shuffle to make sure Match wasn’t looking as I emerged from the bridal room. My brother and little nephew both gasped when they saw me, which was adorable. My nephew kept pointing at me the rest of the day and yelling, “PRETTY!” He is so precious.

Before I knew it all my girlfriends were leaving so they could head down to the ceremony site. Pretty soon it was just me and my Pops. I started to feel those butterflies like I used to in track before a big race. My Pops was my coach, and just like he did back then, he calmed me down. Told me to relax and breathe and everything would be ok.

Then we were walking down the aisle. Pops whispered, “Is this an ok pace, should we walk slower?” I looked at him and whispered, “Can I run?”

And then it was tunnel vision. I remember seeing Match and his sis Travel Girl at the end of the aisle. I remember vaguely hearing the guitar strings as my cousin played.  I remember shaking with excitement/nerves.

And then I was standing in front of Match, and I was holding his hands. Tears were streaming down my face and I was grinning from ear to ear and so was he.

I didn’t notice all of the people. I didn’t notice how beautiful the ceremony site was. I just saw him, my Match.

I read my vows with a shaking voice and barely made it through. At the end I forgot to read the last line and just said,  “I LOVE YOU SO MUCH!” and everyone laughed. You could hear the whole audience sniffing (I didn’t notice until watching the video later).

Then it was Match’s turn, and his vows blew me away. I still tear up when I read them:

First Things First. WOW!  You look beautiful today And I just want to express to you how privileged I feel to able to stand before you today and express my love. Asking you to marry me was definitely  the  smartest decision I have ever made. I am going to try very hard not to cry, but if I do…bare with me.

You are the most important person in my life. I could not love another person more than I love you. From the day we first met I have been falling madly in love with you over and over again.

Not a single moment passes where I question our love for each other and our dedication to the friendship we have created.

Life makes sense with you and I could not even start to imagine a life without you in it.

We have many adventures to share together like our first house and our first child and I cannot even begin to tell you how good it feels to know you are the one I will be experiencing the rest of my life with.

There is not a thought in the world that makes me smile more than knowing that when I go to bed tonight I will not be just staring into the eyes of my wife, but the eyes of the love of my life.

Then we exchanged rings and Travel Girl had us repeat our vows that we wrote together:

I take you Date Girl/Match to be my wife/husband, my partner in life and my one true love. I will cherish our friendship and love you today, tomorrow, and forever. I will trust, honor and respect you. I will laugh with you and cry with you. I will love you faithfully through the best and the worst, through the difficult and the easy. For richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health, for as long as we both shall live.

Match laughs a lot when he’s nervous and after his initial tears when reading his personal vows, he couldn’t stop laughing when repeating after his sister. There was one part where she read him off a huge line to repeat and he said, “Can you dumb it down a shade?” and we were cracking up. I love that it was captured on camera because it was so us in that moment. We all needed a laugh after the weeping too.

And then she was pronouncing us husband and wife, and everyone was cheering and Match was kissing me and it was all so surreal, so absolutely perfect.

All photographs were by Owen Kahn, Owen Kahn Photography

Never Worry a Bride the Night Before Her Wedding

Ted: [over the phone] Hello, Robin, it’s Ted.
Robin Scherbatsky: Oh, hi, Ted.
Ted: [repeats] Hello, Robin, it’s Ted.
Robin Scherbatsky: Hi, Ted. Sounds like you’re having fun.
Ted: Robin, have I ever told you that I have been vomit-free since ’93?
Robin Scherbatsky: Oh, listen Ted. I can’t really talk right… ’93? Dude, that’s impressive. –How I Met Your Mother

I’m getting the pictures back from the wedding tomorrow!! I will post them asap. While we wait, I figured I would regal you with a story of the night before the wedding and the morning of. The night before the wedding I remained surprisingly calm. A few of my close girlfriends came over: Couple Wife, Geeky, Monica and Tahoe Girl. We drank a little bit of wine and chatted. Couple Wife brought me an adorable hoodie and tank top to wear for the morning of. Here’s me in the hoodie (which says BRIDE on the front, and Bride to Be on the back, and I still wear on walks, haha):

After the girls left I went about my routine. Did my oily skin treatment, brushed my teeth, and went to bed like usual. I was actually able to drift off to sleep. Then I get a text message from Match, who was out with a few of the guys for a few “casual drinks”. Here’s what the text said:

I threw up sweetie. Love u

Whaaaa?? I sit straight up in bed fully awake, and full on freak out mode. Now here’s a note to all the future grooms out there. Never, EVER tell your bride to be that you just threw up the night before the wedding. I texted Chandler begging him to take Match home so he could sleep it off. I had images of a very hung over groom looking green instead of happy at the ceremony. Chandler messaged me back that he was fine and that they were dropping him off right then. I managed to get to sleep but I couldn’t help stressing a little bit. I wasn’t bridezilla stressed mind you, just a little bit worried. It’s so funny to look back on it now.

First thing the next morning Match texted me that he was fine and not at all hung over. Turns out he’d actually had some bad beer. TomBoy and her boyfriend (formerly known as Single Girl, see I changed it!) had met up with the rest of the guys for a drink since they got in late. She’d only had one beer, from the same pitcher as Match and they’d both thrown up. So I was able to breathe a bit easier knowing Match wouldn’t be hung over and grumpy for the wedding day.

That morning Match was having a boys breakfast at his parents house while I was having a girls breakfast at Tahoe Girl’s parents house. It was amazing! We had pancakes, hash browns, mimosas and coffee. I confess I wasn’t able to eat much but I did the best I could on my nervous stomach. I knew I wouldn’t be eating much for the rest of the day.

Baker Chic, Tahoe Girl, Me, Monica and TomBoy

After breakfast we headed to the bridal suite at the ceremony site. On the way over the girls cranked up some Britney Spears and we danced around and sang in the car.  The girls did a great job of keeping me distracted and not too nervous. We had dance music blasting the entire time I was getting my hair and makeup done by Stylist Girl. It really helped calm my nerves. I wasn’t scared nervous, just incredibly excited. This was it!

The champagne helped too!

Piece of advice for all the brides to be. Wear as comfy of clothes as possible right up until you squeeze into that dress. I opted for workout pants and these fabulous slippers.

The girls kept looking at me all dolled up and getting teary eyed. I told them to tell me something to make me laugh instead of cry and the first thing Tomboy said was, “Match loves to fart!” That had us giggling so hard we ended up crying anyways. 🙂

The girls helped me struggle into my dress and that’s when I really felt like a bride.  Here’s a sneak peek at the dress that doesn’t even begin to do it justice.

I’ll continue the rest of the story when I get the professional pictures. Stay tuned!

Meet the Parents Night

Psychologists believe that every aspect of our lives, all our thought processes & behavior patterns, are the direct result of our relationship to our parents. –Meredith, Grey’s Anatomy

Three nights before the wedding my parents finally got the chance to meet Match’s parents. I was pretty nervous about it at first, and I busied myself in the kitchen making homemade appetizers. My Pops decided to help out and together we must have fried up enough coconut shrimp to feed a small army. As I was washing the last pan, Match’s parents drove up. I glanced outside and saw that Match’s Dad was wearing a Hawaiian shirt almost identical to my Pops. 🙂 I stopped being so nervous after that.

When Match’s Mom walked in we all laughed right out because not only were the dads dressed alike, but both moms were wearing black and white outfits. It made for this adorable picture.

Mom, Pops, Future FIL, Future MIL

Right when Future MIL walked in, my mom went to shake her hand and MIL said, “Oh I’m gonna give you a hug!” They laughed and swapped stories as we sat around our table watching the slideshow I’d put together of Match and me growing up. I had baby pictures all the way through the awkward teen years. This was a great ice breaker and got the moms talking about us as babies. My mom talked to MIL about her healthcare job and MIL opened up to my mom about her job in property management. They have so many things in common it’s really spooky! Match’s Sis Travel Girl was there too and she was cracking up with me and Match about how cute all our folks were together.

We toasted champagne and eat way too many appetizers. We ended up taking the dogs on a long walk to the college campus I used to go to which is right down the street from our house. After we got back I served us up some of my famous Jamaican Jerk Chicken with red beans and coconut milk rice and a big green salad. We were all deliciously full after that and we relaxed and visited for quite awhile.

Both Match and I were so grateful that Meet the Parents Night went off without a hitch. It made the rest of the week go so much more smoothly. I would love it if Match’s parents came up to Oregon with us sometime and visited my folks on “their turf”. Maybe we’ll do that next summer…