Lily and Ryan met via online dating. After three days of intriguing online conversations, they went out on a first date. Five and a half years later, they married in front of 150 guests at Mission Nuestra Señora de la Soledad, in the city where Lily grew up. “Growing up in the Catholic faith it was important for us to receive the sacrament of marriage in the church in front of our family and friends,” says Ryan, explaining it was the same church where Lily received her First Communion and Confirmation.
Lily was ecstatic. “Knowing that I was going to marry Ryan made all of the stress of the wedding day go away,” she says. “The love radiating from all of those in attendance made me feel so blessed, and I couldn’t wait to marry my best friend.” Ryan felt happy and fortunate on the big day. “My favorite part of the wedding day was waiting at the altar for the love of my life to make her way to me,” he says, “I was overtaken with emotion when I saw how beautiful she looked.”
Deacon Ron Panziera, Lily’s family friend, officiated the ceremony, which featured many of the bride’s Mexican traditions including las aras matrimoniales which is an exchange of 13 gold coins, and el lazo, which symbolizes an everlasting union.
In addition to their family-only wedding party, the couple’s four-year-old rabbit, Bandit, was ring bearer. He was dapper in a custom suit made by Lily’s aunt. Both Lily and Ryan wore bunny-themed socks on the big day, a nod to Bandit!
The elegant color scheme of cream, light green, peach and pink was a fit for the rustic ceremony venue. The reception was held on a patio under an oak tree at Lily’s aunt’s private ranch in the foothills of Soledad, surrounded by vineyards, farmland and white barns. Lily’s mother created the floral arrangements, including the bride’s bouquet and the centerpieces.
At the reception, the couple shared a dance with their mothers at the same time to the song “We Are Family” to symbolize the families uniting. They also had a traditional Mexican money dance. The buffet, including chicken fajitas, birria, rice and beans, as well as pan dulce and other treats, reflected the bride’s Mexican heritage. The groom’s taste was reflected in the banana wedding cake—his favorite flavor.
The day went fast but the newlyweds soaked it all in. “Fortunately, Lily and I took time to enjoy the moment and all the hard work that we put into the wedding,” remembers Ryan.
Liliana & Ryan Wedding Resources
Veronica Vera (For Bridesmaids)
Amber Resort in Puerto Vallarta, Jalisco, Mexico.
“XO” by Beyonce
“We are Family” by Sister Sledge. We did a combined Mother/Son and Mother/Daughter dance.
“Single Ladies (Put a Ring on It)” by Beyonce
“Another One Bites the Dust” by Queen
“Oye Mi Amor” by Mana
We had the bride’s aunt make a small banana cake with white buttercream frosting for us to cut and she also made some desserts (peanut butter balls, chocolate chip cookies, brownies, toffee, and oakie bars) for our dessert bar. The groom’s mother supplied a variety of Italian cookies and biscotti while the bride’s mother provided the pan dulce to represent the heritage of the bride and groom.
The mother of the bride provided the flowers and created the different flower arrangements and archways at the reception and ceremony sites. She used white, light pink, peach and yellow roses. White mini roses and white peonies. For greenery, she used eucalyptus and greenery from other trees. We wanted light colors in the flowers with a lot of greenery to coordinate with the natural beauty of the ceremony and reception sites.
Photo booth photos.
Danielle went above and beyond as our wedding photographer and did an amazing job capturing the essence of our wedding day. So much happens throughout the day that it is hard to catch it all. Luckily when you have a photographer like Danielle you are able to relive the day once you see the photos. I love all of the candid pictures of our friends and family as they truly capture their emotions at that time.
Our family’s helped so much throughout the whole process and we are so grateful for all of the time and hard work they put into our wedding day. We would not have been able to pull off such and amazing reception and perfect day without their help.
Don’t fret over the small details but focus on the overall goal of the wedding: to marry the love of your life while surrounded by those who love and care about you.
We would have hired a day-of coordinator. Since we wanted to plan it ourselves and create a lot of details we did not want to hire a full coordinator service. Our family and friends helped us with the day of details and while this was very helpful and gracious, we wish they could have enjoyed the festivities more and relaxed at the reception. This would have been more feasible if we had hired a day-of coordinator.