How on earth do I find the words to share about my brother and his beautiful bride’s STUNNING wedding day at the River Center in Des Moines last month? I guess could go ALL the way back to the beginning to the day my grandmother came in to wake me up with the news I had a new baby brother, and then gush about every day I’ve had the gift of being his “big” sister ever since. But since I think everyone here wants to quickly get to the wedding pictures, I will spare you all my mushy and hilarious stories! So let’s quickly fast forward to this most recent March 12th. A beautiful bride. A handsome groom. And four of the most dapper young nephews you’ve ever seen. Let’s talk about the palpable feeling that was in the air that day…the weightiness and yet the hope of forever. Let’s talk about the family and friends who were in attendance, those incredible souls who gathered to cast their lots in the invisible–but ever so real–bucket of joy and support and standing with a new marriage…and a new family. Yes, if I had the power to pause time for even just a few moments, I would pause time on THAT day.
I’ve been reading lately about the power of HESED love. A love that is deep and authentic and powerful. A love that should begin in those first days and months and years of life through attachment love…a love that is profoundly holy and unable to be fully captured by human words because it originated in heaven itself. It is that kind of love John and Ashley stepped into that beautiful March 12th when they made their vows…both to each other and with the boys. And it is that kind of love that will give them the joy on the good days and will sustain them on their darkest days. We all left with deep-seeded joy that evening. And I can still feel that joy and that hope now as I’m typing this.
Before I go, I must say how thankful I was for John and Ashley’s INCREDIBLE vendor team. That wedding was gorgeous in every detail. Simply GORGEOUS. And might I add, it was a cold day. Like windchills so cold I had frost bite on my face! So I want to give a special shout out to Josh Voight, one incredibly talented videographer who also clicked my camera’s shutter a number of times so I could jump in the family pictures. A guy who made the entire day fun and loaned me a crazy cool lens along with his gloves in those sub-zero windchills! And then of course, my assistant photographer, Lisa Priest. Not only is she willing to travel with me on my out of town weddings, she takes the most beautiful pictures and always is a good friend no matter what crazy ideas–or weather–is thrown her way. AND… my daughter and my assistant, Anna. She is always on point at reading my mind and handling every detail I need. For this wedding, I decided last minute to put a camera in her hands for part of the ceremony and reception because I knew she would deliver, and she did. I am so VERY grateful.
Here is the list of one of the best vendor teams you’ll ever find–if you live in Iowa, you’ll definitely want to check them out!
- Flowers & Decor – Wildflower
- Wedding Planner / Day of Coordinator – Michele Farrell
- Venue – The River Center
- Food – Trellis Catering
- Dessert – Scratch Cupcakery
- DJ – Ronny Johnson
- Officiant – Gayln Wiemers
- Videographer – Voight Media
- Makeup – I Do Pretty
- Dress & Tuxes – Weddings by Design
- Hair – Josie Schraud
- Photography – Amy Elizabeth Photography
- Bus / Limo – Majestic Limos
- Surety Hotel
On that note, scroll on down to see some favorites from John and Ashley’s stunning day…