Well hello friends, long time no see! We are back after a week in paradise 😊

And guess what?

We got married!!

I have a few wedding and honeymoon recaps coming at you these next few days before we jump right back into training. This week was an amazing time spent together and away from all distractions and stresses of real life. We are so sad that our honeymoon has to come to an end but also so excited to start our new life together in the real world.

We got married this past Saturday, on August 5th. We don’t have pictures back from our photographer yet, but I am excited to share some pictures taken by family and friends throughout the day!

I spent the night with all of my bridesmaids in our downtown Grand Rapids hotel room the night before our wedding. Saturday morning we were up bright and early in order to be at the church by 7:00 am to start our hair and makeup. The artists traveled to us and spent the entire morning doing all of our hair and makeup.

I was so surprised how quickly the morning went by! I was worried beforehand that it would feel like we were waiting in the church basement forever, since so many people seemed surprised that our hair and makeup was starting so early, but the time truly flew by.

I started to get super nervous and anxious halfway through the morning but my bridesmaids and family members were amazing. They took care of everything while I was getting my hair and makeup done. Our biggest crisis of the morning was that the boutenierres had no flowers and looked like grapes instead, but my mom and a few bridesmaids added some flowers into them and they looked awesome.

My new mother-in-law went to pick up Panera for lunch, and after eating we got into our dresses. That’s when it started to feel real! My fiancé and I exchanged letters around the corner of a door because we didn’t want to see each other beforehand and that’s when the tears started.

Our ceremony began at 1:30 pm and the church wedding coordinator made sure we were right on time. My dad and I waited at the top of the stairs while the rest of the wedding party made their entrances, and finally calmed ourselves down right before we had to walk our. We made it the whole way down the aisle without crying but I did see my fiancé shed a tear or too 😉

Our priest was wonderful! The whole ceremony went off without a hitch. I was nervous about the order of events because our rehearsal went by so quickly but the priest gave us all the cues we needed and we felt very comfortable. We had a Catholic wedding, so there were none of the typical “big” moments, like saying I do, kissing the bride or writing our own vows, but it still felt so meaningful.

The music was perfect too! We had a trumpet and flute player along with the church organist, which was wonderful because those are the instruments that we play. Before we knew it the ceremony was over and we were heading out to start our receiving line!

I think our favorite part of the entire day was our grand exit from the church. We had everyone make two lines and blow bubbles as we walked out and headed to the limo together. This was the best moment because we finally got to see everyone that had come all together in one place. The weather was absolutely beautiful too.

We took a limo ride around the church to come back inside for pictures, and was so nice to have some time alone together right away to realize what we had just accomplished. We took some family pictures in the church and then headed out with our entire limo party in the limo to a local nature center.

Lots of champagne was consumed in the limo, and one of our groomsmen had a “dance off” with the limo driver in the nature center parking lot. The limo driver was so accommodating and truly a blast! Our photographer helped us find places and poses for pictures, for which we were so grateful. I can’t tell you how grateful we were to have him assisting us! He was phenomenal to work with and we just cannot wait to see our photos.

After a limo ride around town, we arrived at our banquet hall for the reception. The grand entrance took place and this was the first time we saw the hall with all our decorations up! My fiance’s cousin did all of our decorations and she did a fantastic job. Everything was PERFECT. Our colors were navy, coral and gold and they looked so sharp.

We had our toasts, followed by dinner which seemed to be a big hit.

After dinner we started the first dances. My fiancé and I had been taking dance lessons to learn a dance to complete for the reception. We combined two songs for this dance – it started our slow, with Make You Feel My Love by Adele and then partway through switched to It Don’t Mean a Thing by Duke Ellington. We’d been learning a swing dance and had been practicing every day! It wasn’t anything too crazy but we definitely had fun practicing and I’m happy with how it went in the actual dress and heels 😉

After dancing we cut our cake, had an anniversary dance, threw the bouquet, and then the dance floor was open. I was so nervous that no one would dance but we were so happy with the turnout!

We saw friends, aunts, uncles, cousins, little ones, grandparents, and everyone alike out there on the dance floor. Our DJ was AWESOME and did such a good job mixing up the songs and playing something for everyone! At one point we had a conga line traveling all the way through the reception hall, outside around it and back in.

I know it sounds cliche and everyone says it, but our day was truly perfect. All of the hard work paid of and I wouldn’t have changed a thing. The best part of the day was seeing everyone we loved having a great time together in the same place.

We are back now, anxiously awaiting our wedding photos, and ready to start our life together as newlyweds.

Thank you all for sticking with me through our week long absence! My running thoughts and ice cream flavors will be back in a few.

Hope you have a fantastic Sunday!

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