The Couple:Vivian Murai and Cary Keaten
Wedding Date: May 8, 2010
Tell us a little about you and your beloved: We are transplants from Michigan and Wyoming who enjoy good food and wine and socializing with our wonderful family and friends. Cary manages a city in the Central Valley, and is an Ironman in his spare time.
I work for a state agency protecting public health and the environment, and for fun I read/meet with my Smarty Pants Book Club and volunteer at SSPCA special events when not kicking back with our almost 15-year old German Shepherd Shiloh.
What was the most amazing part of your day? Many moments throughout the day were stunningly good, so it’s hard to choose. Here are examples:
My makeup, hair, flowers and dress turned out so well that Cary teared up during the ceremony.
I think another couple of high points for me would have to be seeing everyone as I walked down the aisle, our first dance, the rhyming toast my girlfriends wrote and performed at the reception, and taking the garter off Cary.
Cary’s high points were seeing his future wife walk down the stairs and aisle, and sharing the whole evening with friends and family (especially the eating, drinking and guys brawling over the garter part).
What else would you like to share about your big day? We were really impressed and ecstatic with all our vendors (adaptable, responsive, high quality), and were glad to see all of our guests and enjoy the night with them. Old traditions were tweaked to be more inclusive thanks to Doug and Dara (Music on the Move).
Ceremony Site: Delta King Hotel
Reception Venue: Delta King Hotel
Photographer: Diana Miller Photography
Videographer: Yautang Yu (Vivian’s Uncle)
Wedding Planner: Vivian with lots of work from Dara and Doug (Music on the Move) and key assists from Jenny Johnson at the Delta King Hotel
Caterer: Delta King Hotel
Cake: River City Cakes
Flowers: Big Bang Event Design (Amazing Stuff)
Favors: Silicone wristband
Wedding Dress: Alfred Angelo
Bridesmaid Dresses: Nordstrom Rack and Nordstrom
Hair: Diane Donahue at GS Hair
Makeup: Shana J Beals
Invitations: DIY invites from The American Wedding
Reception Place cards by Julie Keaten-Reed with assistance from Russ Keaten-Reed, Rendy Keaten and Cary Keaten.
DJ/Entertainment: Ceremony Music by George Sheldon of Guitar Landscapes (sound system by Music on the Move)
DJ Doug and Dara of Music on the Move (All the planning help and coordination on the day made it easier for all of the wedding party to enjoy!) Doug and Dara were so flexible and adaptable. They made it go so smoothly – one of my friends said she should have had me work on her wedding!
Honeymoon location: Hawaii (Big Island and Kauai)
Any other of your wedding vendor(s) you’d like to call out?
Alterations by Kim’s Couture Designs (Thanks, Kim and team!)
Grebitus Jewelry for our wedding bands and making our rings
Chabo’s Jewelry (SF gift Center) for my engagement ring (Thank you Don Toy for this referral.)
East Sac Pet Pals (Deb & Rick) for taking great care of Shiloh on the day of our wedding.
First Dance Song: Better Together by Jack Johnson
Any advice you’d give to our readers who are planning their weddings right now?
1) Make sure you take stock periodically on the big day so you will remember how it unfolds. Leave some extra time in the schedule to deal with hiccups.
2) See your loved ones the days before and after because it is almost impossible to see them all during the reception. Drinks the night before and dim sum/open house the day after worked well for us – both were affordable and fun.
3) Do research if budget is an issue for you. I did a lot of window shopping and dress research, and got referrals and checked Web sites for DJs, Florists and Photographers. Your venue will have a short list of folks who know their requirements and routines. Definitely be wow-ed by your florist’s and photographer’s photos before you choose them. Thanks to the Brown House at Loehman’s Plaza for referring me to Big Bang Events.
4) Know that with diligence up front and good communication throughout, it will all work out in the end.
5) Breathe and enjoy the smiles as you walk down the aisle.
Anything that you would have done differently if you were given the chance? I wish I could make time go more slowly during the reception so we could have talked with everyone. Other than that, everything seemed wonderful to me.
Photos courtesy of Diana Miller Photography
Do you have the new Real Weddings Magazine iPhone and iPad App?