The Couple: Ashlee & Colin
Wedding Date: June 21, 2015
Tell us a little about you and your beloved: Colin and I met in September 2012 on a dating application. Although a handful of friends and family members know a different story, I think it’s safe to say as we approach our 1 year anniversary, that dating applications do, indeed, work! Our first date was one out of the fairy tales. Of course, this fairy tale includes dinner at Tahoe Joe’s and beating one another at air hockey in Dave and Busters, but it’s basically the same thing as Cinderella, right?
After the first date we were inseparable. We spent every day together and, in January 2013, Colin moved into my condo with me. We had planned a family vacation to Maui in July 2013 (at this point Colin had only told a small selection of people that he was planning on proposing) Prior to departing for our vacation we had dropped off our dog to my aunt and uncle for them to “puppy-sit” and one of my uncle’s scrutinizing questions was: “when are you planning on popping the question?” Colin’s reply was that he was waiting until I was done with school. I had always had some form of hope that he might propose in Maui; however, after his reply to this question all hope was lost. Colin was unable to get the full week off from work for our vacation, so when he arrived a few days after us he was nervous, excited, and anxious to propose. On the other hand, I was exhausted from the heat and just wanted to relax for a couple hours before dinner. After some begging and pleading, Colin finally talked me into going on a “walk on the beach.” Shortly after arriving on the sand my parents, sister, and grandparents take out their cell phones and iPads to record something. Colin got down on one knee (after about a 20 minute proposal) and asked me to be his wife.
Wedding planning was always fun and exciting for us. We wanted to incorporate bits and pieces of our personal life that everyone may not understand, but we also wanted it to be romantic and ethereal. I walked down the aisle to the theme song from Jurassic Park; which turned out to be absolutely stunning. Our invitations resembled Harry Potter (because we are both huge fans), and our first dance some was extremely lyrically meaningful to the both of us. Throughout the planning process we always reminded one another that the wedding was about us and our love. Weddings are extremely expensive! With that being said, we made spreadsheets, GoogleDocs, and varying budgets so that we would be able to pay for everything stress-free. Colin and I are both outgoing individuals; however, I am a lot more “type A” when it comes to planning than he is. It was fun being able to hear the differing opinions from the both of us and I think it truly made our wedding more personalized.
What was the most amazing part of your day? The most amazing part of our day was being able to incorporate everyone we love into the wedding and having all of our friends and family surrounding us. My uncle officiated the wedding; my cousin’s daughter and my former manager’s daughter were our flower girls. Our nephew was the ring bearer, and Colin’s father was even a groomsmen! We wanted this day to not only be a celebration of the love we share with one another, but also the love we share with our friends and family. It was vital to be able to include everyone we love in our wedding day, and it meant so much to have such concrete support throughout the entire process. This was the first time some of our family members met one another. It was such an incredible feeling walking down the aisle and seeing family members and friends that have known me my entire life sitting next to individuals that I had never met. Having the opportunity to embrace the camaraderie between families was an incredible feeling.
What else would you like to share about your big day? We had a very long engagement, and it was 100% worth it! Although Colin and I moved relatively fast throughout the beginning of our relationship, having a 2 year engagement allowed us to truly save for the wedding while also highlighting what was important about the big day. Having a long engagement may not be a suitable choice for everyone, but it gave us the opportunity to celebrate our wedding without having small stresses interrupt. We were able to solidify every aspect of our wedding a few months before the actual date, which in turn allowed us both to relax and “take in” the love that was surrounding us.
Ceremony and Reception Site, Caterer and Cake: Grand Island Mansion
Officiant: Randy Henniger (Bride’s Uncle)
Photographer and Photo Booth: Temple Photography & Photo Booth
Videographer: Darin Reyes Productions
Flowers and Décor Rentals: Jackie’s Flowers
Bridal Attire: Nordstrom Bridal Suite
Bridesmaids’ Attire: Alfred Angelo
Make-up: Shana Beals Makeup Artistry
Invitations: Paper Truly
Signage: Allen Artistry and Hey Shabby Me
DJ/Entertainment/Band: Cope Entertainment
Linen Rentals: La Tavola Fine Linen
Honeymoon Location: Disneyworld
First Dance Song: “Thinking Out Loud” by Ed Sheeran
Any advice you’d give to our readers who are planning their weddings right now? Don’t ever forget the reason you’re celebrating. It is so easy to get caught up in the wedding color selection, cake tasting, abundance of parties, and the numerous photos being taken, but remember that everything will fall into place. I remember during the planning process I was constantly worried about the table runners matching the centerpieces; however, after almost a year of being married our family members and friends bring up the way Colin looked at me at the alter or the beaming smile I had throughout our first dance…no one mentions the color of the table runners or the flavor(s) of our cake. Also – make sure you are ALWAYS standing near your husband or wife! A close friend gave me that advice before our wedding and I followed it. Our pictures turned out so wonderful; even the candid “fun” ones because Colin and I were right next to each other – hand in hand. You don’t want to look at pictures in 10 years and see you and your spouse across the room from one another!
Anything that you would have done differently if you were given the chance? I would have truly “taken in” the day. Everyone told me prior to our wedding that the wedding day itself would “fly by,” and it definitely did! I would have had one more mimosa the morning of the wedding while getting ready, and I would have taken a moment to truly absorb the beauty of the ceremony and reception. Although the photos and video(s) will be beautiful memories for all of us, it never compares to the way you feel when you first see your husband or wife at the end of the aisle. The feeling of pure happiness is something no one can explain, regardless of how many photos are taken.
Photos courtesy of Temple Photography & Photo Booth.
Blog post by Real Weddings Magazine’s Social Media Maven, Aimee Carroll.
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