As Alice walked down the aisle toward her groom Kelly, she almost wished they had practiced it another time or two. “I kinda remember walking down the aisle, but it went by really quickly,” she says. “I remember when my dad ‘gave me away’ and thinking that maybe we should have rehearsed it more because I don’t think the three of us knew what to do.”

Having do-overs is somewhat of a theme for Alice and Kelly’s relationship. “We met once back in college but didn’t get on, talk or see each other for many years until we met for a second time in college, where we didn’t get on or talk much once again,” Alice recalls.

Fate couldn’t keep them apart though. One winter, Alice was back from New York where she was getting her master’s degree. She decided to join her friend at a bar in Folsom. Kelly was in the group of friends they were meeting. This time, with some liquid courage and a chivalrous gesture to retrieve Alice’s credit card from a previous bar, the two exchanged numbers. The third time was the charm.

They both expected the relationship to be somewhat of a winter fling, knowing Alice would be heading back to New York. But when it was time to say goodbye, neither of them could. “I don’t think we went a day without talking to each other, either on FaceTime or in texts,” Kelly says. “I saved just about every penny I got from my job to pay for a flight to New York, so I could visit her in the spring.”

They were long-distance for more than a year. Knowing Alice would be back in Sacramento after she graduated made it easier to endure the challenges of a long-distance relationship. During a trip to Germany and Austria, Kelly proposed. They enjoyed their engagement for a couple months before they started to plan.

“The highs were definitely when we would finally make a decision on a vendor and ‘lock them in.’ We would have mini celebrations, where we would high-five each other and say stuff like, ‘Woo! Got that DJ!’ in macho voices,” he says. As they looked for a venue, it took some compromising. Alice was leaning toward a destination wedding and Kelly wanted something more personal. They agreed on Tahoe but that still didn’t match their vision. Finally, with a generous offer from Kelly’s mom, they landed on having the ceremony and reception in her backyard.

After all the stress that came with planning a backyard wedding, Kelly and Alice were just ready to be married.

This time around, Kelly didn’t need any do-overs. Even though he had seen her just moments before for their first look, he could barely keep it together as his bride made her way to him. “Holy cow, I was blown away! I had just seen her, but this was completely different. This was for real. I was almost shaking, I was biting my lip trying not to cry or explode with emotion. It was slow motion. I was just so damn happy.”

—Kourtney Jason