You hear over and over again how time flies on your wedding day and how it’s over before you know it. I’ve been in so many weddings that I’ve lost count, but it is amazing how different the experience is from the “bride-side!”

My maids and I started the day off at a hotel where two of them and I had spent the night! I had 4 guests in my one bedroom apartment and NO BEDS (just a couch and several air mattresses!), and I was determined I was going to get a good nights sleep the night before! I’ve heard many brides don’t and I’m usually one to not sleep when there is excitement the next day, but I was EXHAUSTED!! I did however wake up about an hour before I had to, so I made use of the time by calling my best friend in Honduras who couldn’t make it up for the wedding, which really helped to calm my nerves talking to her!

Then my hairdresser arrived, and the fun begins…..

 

Sherri Greene has been my hairdresser since I was a kid! She is the ONLY person who has cut my hair in over 20 years, and the one I prefer to style it as well! No question I made sure before we set the date that she’d be available!! She also styled 4 of my maids as well.

My lovely cousin Amy, did my makeup as well as our cousin and my maid Ashley’s. She is a great Arbonne rep!

 

My cute mom!

My maids worked hard to get my dress ironed (our steamer wasn’t working!!) and to get themselves ready too!

Then it was off to the church to get dressed there, with just a slight mis-step when my MoH, Kerri, and I couldn’t find my car! (The hotel had the longest passageways and was SO confusing- my dad had parked by an outside door, but we couldn’t find it!)

Our ceremony was held at St. Paul’s Community Church. It was absolutely BEAUTIFUL and their blue accents inside perfectly accentuated all of the shades of blue I used!

Time to get the dress on…

Kerri slipped on my garter’s-one to throw, one to keep (it was just too cute!)

Then it was time to meet my groom!

Don’t look yet…..

Ok, now!

That moment is still so clear in my mind! All I could think of (besides how handsome he looked!) was how amazing it was to be right there in that moment all alone with him to revel in the joy of the day for a few private moments! I am so glad that we decided to do pictures beforehand. Especially since it was our only time alone until we left the reception many, many hours later! It really helped to calm both of our nerves and to help us enjoy the day more fully!

Then it was time for formals! First with my little girlies! (They were the only ones ready!!)

 Then the two of us

And lots of family and friend pics!

His fam…

My fam……

Our officiating pastor and his family. They were my youth pastors growing up, and I babysat for their kids until they moved to Minnesota! Their daughter Bethany was also my lovely guest book attendant!

The Lasater family! This wedding would NOT have happened (at least not as well!) without them! The girl’s were my jr. bridesmaids and flower girl, the boys were ushers, and Chaundra made all the little girls dresses, restyled my dress, altered my maids dresses, and helped with my bridesmaid gifts! Whew!! We kept her BUSY!!!

My maids (showing off their bouquets- and my HOURS of labor!)

 

The boys…

 

Then…It was time to wait! This was the hardest part! It wasn’t the crowded little room with 11 other girls, but it was the nerves!! Knowing that all of the people I could faintly see coming in through the window were there for Ray and I! That’s a bit overwhelming to me, as I’m not used to nor do I like being the center of attention! It was only the fact of knowing how many important people I wanted to share in my happiness that drove me to have a big wedding!

Let the waiting begin…..

Next up….The Ceremony!

 

ALL photos by Shanell Bledsoe. Check out her site and her blog! Can’t recommend her enough!

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