Jackie and Eddie met at work in 2010 and kept their relationship an office secret for more than a year and a half, “only letting the partners at the accounting firm know,” Jackie says.
The engagement happened on a mini-vacation to Monterey, after stopping at Big Sur for a two-mile climb up Buzzard’s Roost loop at Pfeiffer State Park. While Jackie was enjoying the view, Eddie told her how much he loved her. “All of a sudden, he took my hand and spun me around,” she says. “I looked down to find him on one knee asking me to marry him.” The bride said yes. “Eddie planned a perfect weekend, chose a perfect ring, and is the perfect person for me,” Jackie says.
Engaged for just six months, they planned their wedding quickly. High Sierra Iris and Wedding Gardens was a perfect venue match, since the couple—who lives in Reno—spent a lot of time in the Camino area when they were secretly dating.
Their traditional wedding featured a wine ceremony and “thank-you’s” for their respective parents. Jackie and Eddie also chose a reading for each other and kept it a secret until the wedding. The day’s highlights for Eddie included reading his vows and seeing his bride for the first time.
“I was so happy when I saw Jackie start to walk down the aisle because I just knew that she was the one for me,” says Eddie, who describes his wife as beautiful and honest.
They celebrated with 80 guests, including Jackie’s family from Alaska and Washington and Eddie’s guests from Colorado, Oregon and New Mexico. Many of the couple’s friends from Reno also attended. Sadly, Jackie’s oma (grandmother) passed away two days before the wedding. “During the toasts, Eddie surprised me by mentioning that my oma was in our hearts that day,” Jackie says. “And she definitely was.”
Jackie’s sister was her maid of honor while Eddie’s friend was his best man. The groom’s younger brother was the ring bearer and both Jackie and Eddie’s respective nieces were flower girls. The bride loved her strapless Casablanca gown with a sweetheart neckline and a fit-and-flare shape. “The dress felt romantic and feminine, and I thought it fit perfectly with a garden wedding,” she says.
Much of the wedding décor was purple, Jackie’s favorite color. She did a few DIY projects too, like using an online stationery template to design the invitations and making a love bird cake topper by gluing wood birds (purchased from a craft store) to wood skewers and painting them. Jackie was going to make the cake as well, but decided to hire a baker since it was a lot of work so close to the wedding. For formality, the couple cut a six-inch round cake and then served vanilla and chocolate cupcakes for dessert. The frosting colors? White and purple, of course!
Since they wanted a “grand finale,” Jackie and Eddie gave guests sparklers, which were a lot of fun and made for great photos.
First Dance Song
“When You Say Nothing At All” by Alison Krauss
Father/Daughter Dance Song
“You’ve got a friend” by James Taylor
Mother/Son Dance Song
“Simple Man” by Lynyrd Skynyrd
Cake Cutting Song
“Sweet Pea” by Amos Lee
Bouquet Toss Song
“I Got it from my Mama” by Will.I.Am
Garter Toss Song
“Legs” by ZZ Top
Details about the cake
Vanilla chocolate chip cake with chocolate ganache filling and vanilla frosting. Cupcakes were a choice of four flavors: Lemon with cream cheese frosting, Dark chocolate with peppermint frosting, Vanilla with vanilla frosting, and Kahlua with chocolate frosting.
Details about the flowers
We went with lots of wildflowers and I let the florists be creative within the color scheme. For my bouquet, I wanted hydrangeas, roses and calla lilies.
Details about the favors
Apothecary jars with thank-you charms and filled with purple M&Ms — DIY by bride.
Anything else you’d like to share about your wedding?
We did an exit song where everyone lit sparklers and we ran out and up the stairs to a limo. The song was Save the Last Dance For Me, Michael Buble.
There were too many special moments to count. I think as soon as I stepped on the top step to walk down the aisle and saw 80 faces of our closest family and friends that had come from all over the place just to support us, I got completely overwhelmed. It’s an amazing thing.
One “unique” moment happened during the ceremony. They say that something has to go wrong for a perfect marriage, and we definitely had our little blooper. The wine ceremony was about to begin, and my older brother began to play the guitar (Dee, by Randy Rhodes). Eddie and I walked back to the wine barrel where we were supposed to poor our two different wines into one cup and drink. The wine bottles were wrapped in burlap bags and the silver wine goblet was from my parents wedding. As soon as we walked back and each picked up a bottle, we realized they were still corked and sealed! Eddie said, “they are probably twist off” and tried to open his but they were definitely cork. So we faked it. We both pretended to poor the wine into the glass, making sure the butt of the bottle was out toward the guests so they didn’t see that no wine was coming out. And we both pretended to drink. Eddie even smacked his lips making me laugh like a crazy person. No one noticed so we must have been convincing. Once we got home the next night, we popped both bottles open and performed the ritual in our living room. I think it was even better that way.
For raving about vendors, Foothill Photography and High Sierra Iris and Wedding Gardens were both two blessings we happened across. Foothill is a family business and the sisters-in-law did our engagement shoot and the wedding with their mom. We felt so comfortable with them and neither of us are comfortable in front of a camera.
Nancy Visman at the wedding gardens was like another mother to me. She went above and beyond, invited us to visit the property several times, tracked down wine barrels for us at no charge, and the pride she has in her gardens really comes through when you see how gorgeous they are. We owe so much to her, she is just a wonderful person and loves hosting weddings.
Any tips you’d give brides and grooms planning their wedding today?
Be creative! You can do almost anything you want these days and all the small personal details are what people remember most. Plus, if you do some of the projects together with your honey, it makes them that much more special and brings you even closer together. We found a jigsaw in my husband’s Grandma’s garage that belonged to his Grandpa. We decided to use it to make our cupcake stand together. It was a fun project and it meant a lot to both of us. His Grandma, who is 90, was unable to make it to the wedding but she loved seeing pictures of that cupcake stand!
High Sierra Iris & Wedding Gardens Officiant:
Robert Morgan Ceremony Music:
Sound Guy Entertainment Photographer:
Foothill Photography (now closed) Wedding Planner:
Emily Kessler, Day-of coordinator Reception Site:
High Sierra Iris & Wedding Gardens Bridal Hair:
Arrvada at VIP-CAT Bride Bridal Make-up:
Arrvada at VIP-CAT Bride Bridal Attire:
Marchele's Bridal Boutique
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