Nicole and Adam met their freshman year at Sonoma State University while living in the same dorm building. They became acquainted through mutual friends, but kept it platonic at first. “I was pretty firmly entrenched in the friend zone,” says Adam. “However, my persistence (and I’d like to think my charm) paid off, and we began dating during our senior year.”
When Adam moved to Washington, D.C. after college, and with Nicole staying in California, it seemed like the relationship was coming to a close. However, the pair stayed in contact and once Nicole decided she was going to go to nursing school, Adam suggested she might apply to Georgetown. “Thankfully, Nicole got into the program and shortly after moved out to Washington, D.C.,” he says. “We began dating again, and after two-and-half years of living in D.C., we moved back to California so that I could attend law school at UC Davis.”
Adam proposed to Nicole during his first year of law school. “I took her to one of my favorite secluded beaches in Malibu and popped the question,” he shares. “I packed a little picnic, brought a bottle of wine, and wrote her a poem. Nicole claims she knew I was going to ask. She says that she’s never seen me so nervous before.”
Nicole and Adam both share a mutual love for Northern California wine country. “It’s the area we met, we both love wine, and we both love the beauty of the whole area,” he explains. “We had a lot of family coming in from out of town and wanted to have a wedding that matched that wine country vibe. Small, relaxed and lots of wine.”
The couple chose a small winery in Santa Rosa called Paradise Ridge. “It was a gorgeous property, was within our budget, and matched the aesthetic we were going for,” says Adam. “Unfortunately, after six months of planning our wedding at Paradise Ridge, the winery was completely destroyed in the Tubbs Fire. That was a tough day for both of us. As sorry as we felt for ourselves, we had to remember that hundreds of people had lost their homes and businesses in that fire.”
They quickly regrouped and ended up taking a more modern route, holding the ceremony at the Paul Mahder Art Gallery and reception at the Healdsburg SHED. “It was definitely a bit more unconventional, but we thought the reception venue was super cool and unique,” says Adam.
The ceremony was officiated by Rabbi Finley, who Adam shares, “was able to integrate the cultural aspects of a Jewish wedding without turning the ceremony into a religious service.”
“I loved how real the day was,” adds Nicole, “from finishing up transcribing my vows onto scratch pieces of paper, to ending the night leading my adorable new husband back to the hotel after a fantastic night with family, friends and a bit too much to drink. I felt fully there and a part of all of it. Some say their wedding feels like a dream, but mine was visceral and real. It was fantastic.”
Nicole & Adam Wedding Resources
“Burning Stars” by Mimicking Birds
“More” by Bobby Darin (Family Dance)
“Somewhere Only We Know” by Keane
“Kiss from a Rose” by Seal
White cake with white buttercream frosting, Champagne custard, raspberry Cabernet mousse, and marble cake with dark chocolate blackberry Cabernet mousse.
Simple green and white flowers with small touches of color; simple but worked well with the open space.
We actually had almost our entire wedding planned in Santa Rosa at Paradise Ridge Winery. Unfortunately, six months before the wedding, the winery burned down in the Tubbs fires. It left us with a short timeline for re-planning the wedding but, we discovered the Healdsburg SHED and fell in love with it. Also, a shout-out to the Luna’s (our wedding coordinator and DJ) who were incredibly patient, helpful, and accommodating as we attempted to reconfigure the wedding.
Patience during the planning! It can get very stressful trying to plan a wedding on a budget. We found it very important to communicate openly and honestly as a couple, and to make sure that we didn’t treat every hiccup like a complete disaster.