An Outdoor Summer Evening Rehearsal Dinner at Ravina On The Lakes
Gus + Abriella are two of the coolest people I’ve ever met. I had only met them through Facetime prior to their rehearsal dinner and wedding and I knew I already loved them. The week before their wedding, I chatted with them on Facetime and played a get-to-know-you game while they were driving to Chicago to catch a flight to California. They were flying out to California to apartment/house hunt because they BOTH matched into medical residency programs out there (heck yeah!). Both Gus and Abriella are doctors and are going to be completing their residencies out in California. I can only imagine the amount of dedication and commitment (and stress) it took to plan a wedding while finishing up their last year of medical school together, interviewing for residencies all over the country, matching into residency programs, and then moving across the country. Seriously, these people are INCREDIBLE. I am so proud of both of them it makes me want to weep. I’ve been down the medical school/residency route with my own husband, and it is anything but easy (and I’m just riding along with a view from the sidelines). The amount of time and sacrifice that job entails is outrageous (be sure to thank your doctors for your care, because WOW have they put in the time and worked hard for many, many years). I cannot say enough wonderful things about these two human beings, they are just lovely in all the ways, and perfectly suited for each other. Hope you enjoy browsing through their couple photos at their Rehearsal Dinner.
Venue: Ravina On The Lakes
Are you planning an intimate elopement or adventure wedding?
If so, click on the contact button above and let me know all about it! One of my favorite things to do is travel and explore new places. I'm a lover of the outdoors, hiking, mountains, waterfalls, pretty light, wedding details, cascading bouquets, veils/headpieces, flowers, bridal gowns, and anything indie or bohemian. My favorite couples are the easy going, wild at heart with adventurous souls. If your wedding/elopement happens to fall in a place on my adventure-bucket-list, I have a special offer for you!
Hotel: Estes Park Resort
Ceremony venue: YMCA of the Rockies, Overlook Chapel
Reception venue: Estes Park Resort
Bouquets, boutonnieres and other florals: The Enchanted Forest, Estes Park Wedding dress: David’s Bridal
Bridesmaid dresses: David’s Bridal
Hair & Make-up: Taylor Rae Thomas, J Bangs Salon Nashville
Tuxedos/Suits: Men's Warehouse
Catering: Estes Park Resort
Cake: Fiona’s Deli, Fort Collins
DJ/Sound and light equipment: Sounds of the Rockies
There are so many things that I love about Dylan and Sophie's wedding, it's impossible to list them all. I will, however, list a few things :).
Dylan and Sophie are two of the most magical people I've ever met. They radiate around each other. I was overwhelmed with love just watching them interact together during their engagement session, but even more so on their wedding day. It was so exciting and refreshing to see two people who truly love one another so passionately that they were less focused on the day going perfectly and more focused on radiating Jesus, joy, kindness, and love. Their day was so beautifully planned with the most caring and thoughtful details. With their wedding being held at Sophie's Grandparents' farm, there were so many family memories that just overwhelmed the day with a sense of love and happiness. A day full of prayers, family, friends, hugs, happy tears, smiles, sunshine, heirlooms, farm trucks, cowboy boots, quilts, hay bales, wedding outdoors in a pasture, ice cream and cake-flavors reception, and dancing under Edison bulbs in a cattle barn (I could never list all of the greatness). Basically everything that makes me smile. I will forever be blessed by this job, but people as special as Dylan, Sophie, and their families are what will forever make this job the greatest treasure in my heart.
I always ask my clients to reflect on their wedding day and type up a little something to include with their blog. I love seeing the day through their eyes. Here is a little something from Sophie about her love with Dylan and their special outdoor wedding at her Grandparents' farm:
“Before I ever discovered love and romance, my mom would tell me, ‘If a man truly loves you, he will wait for you.’ Then, on my thirteenth birthday, Dad and Mom gave me a purity ring that had scripted on it, ‘True Love Waits.’
I lost the purity ring a couple of times in High School (including losing it at the farm where we married!), but I always prayed and I eventually found it. I also prayed for my future husband, not knowing who or where he might be. I longed to be married someday and dreamed it to be at my grandparents’ farm.
All along, he was two years ahead of me in school, played in the same orchestra, ran on the same track and field, and lived in the same subdivision three blocks away. After returning home due to a major leg break at college, he decided to stay. Then, he noticed me. He started pursuing me as I was graduating from high school, and we dated for 3 years. It felt like a long time of waiting. My mom’s words came alive, ‘True love waits.’ Dad gave permission, Dylan proposed, we planned a wedding, and we were happily married on July 15, 2016.
I would say it was an 8-month wedding celebration, for that was the length of our engagement. Mom and I spent my junior spring semester planning a wedding and sipping on coffee. Mom and I ordered The Knot Ultimate Wedding Planner & Organizer, and used their very helpful timeline. We truly started celebrating when school ended for summer break! We began the bridal showers, bachelorette parties, packing, and scurrying around to finalize details! This is when we also hired our wonderful wedding planner, Abby Kaufman! Whenever wedding planning began to feel overwhelming, I was reminded that 1) all the details will be so worth it and 2) waiting will be worth it.
And it was. Our prayers came true for beautiful weather as the sun rose. Long-story short, I couldn’t sleep the morning of our wedding and accidentally locked myself out of the farmhouse. As I sat outside I was gifted with the sun rising. Later that morning Grandma blessed us with a warm breakfast and my 10-year old sister and I drove Willie (our farm truck) around the pasture. It was then time for my lovely bridesmaids to arrive to start hair!
We had planned for an outdoor evening ceremony in the pasture, leaving time for photos during the beautiful sunset, with a dessert and dancing reception in the cattle barn. So many tears and emotions overwhelmed me as I had my first look with Dylan and later in the afternoon as we drove back to the pasture for the ceremony. But then, as Dad and I stood there waiting to proceed down the aisle, a perfect calm rested upon me, and it was time to get married to Dylan!
The ceremony was absolutely lovely. God was present, as He always promises. Dylan and I shared communion while my 10-year old sister sang The Great I Am, by Phillips, Craig, and Dean. We said our vows, exchanged rings, and kissed for the first time as husband and wife. XOXO
The reception was so fun as we cut the cake, danced, listened to the toasts, tossed the bouquet, tossed the garter, visited with friends and family under the lights, and left under the sparklers. In the end, we so enjoyed the wedding, and now, we forever love the marriage.”
Hotel: Bloomington-Normal Marriott Hotel & Conference Center
Bridesmaid Gifts: Bracelet – Nordstrom, Earrings – J. C. Penny’s
Groomsmen Gifts: Socks & Suspenders
Ceremony Venue: In a pasture at my grandparents’ farm – @ The Stephens Farm, Saybrook, Il
Ceremony Seating: Morton Rentals
Pastor: Caleb McClarren, Grace Church in Morton
Reception Venue: In my grandparents’ cattle barn – @ The Stephens Farm, Saybrook, Il
Wedding Coordination: Abby Kaufman – EnVision Events, Inc.
Bouquets, boutonnieres, greens, and other floral: Splendor of Eden – Brie Pflederer
Wedding dress: BHLDN Bridal Shop
Headpiece/veil: BHLDN Bridal Shop
Bride’s Shoes (cowboy boots): Branded Country Wear
Bridesmaid dresses: Sophie chose to do a color scheme and different styles for her bridesmaids’ dresses. She chose swatches from David’s Bridal, Peoria, Il, gave them to her bridesmaids and had them pick their style. One of my bridesmaids was 10 years old and another was pregnant, so she wanted to have a variety of styles and brands so everyone felt comfortable: Nordstrom, Francesca’s, Impressions Online Boutique, Von Maur, Asos, Sundance, and a boutique in Colorado.
Flower girl: H&M kids
Ring Bearer: J. Crew
Hair: Lisa Cook – Family Friend
Ice Cream Catering: Carl’s Ice Cream
Cake: Designer Cake Shop – Linda Veatch
Light equipment: Globe String Lights from Target
DJ: Troy Tarter
Engagement Ring: Groom’s grandmother’s engagement diamond
Wedding Rings: Helzberg Diamonds
Videography: Focal Point Media – Trevor Maloch
Decorations: Chalkboards, quilts, and lanterns from friends
Cocktail tables: Morton Rentals
Hay bales: Friend who bales hay at the Stephens Farm
White Linen Table Cloths: Hobby Lobby
Garter toss: So Chic Boutique, Morton, Il