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Jennah & Gary’s Un-Fussy Texas Throwdown

* Jennah (Speechwriter) & Gary (Software analyst/part-time rock star) * Photographer: Zachary Hunt Photography, TX * Soundtrack for reading: Elvis Costello “Everyday I Write the Book” *

The Info—Ceremony Venue: St. Mary Cathedral, Austin, Texas / Reception Venues: Saengerrunde Hall (inside) and Scholz Garten (outside) / Dress: Nicole Miller / Bride’s shoes: Dolce & Gabana / Bride’s ring: Todd Reed / Headpiece: refashioned from the bride’s maternal grandmother’s / Groom’s suit: eh, who cares / Bride and bridesmaids’ makeup: Kelley Tway of Have Lipstick, Will Travel / Bridesmaids’ earrings: JaqJack / Cakes: designed by the bride and made by Word of Mouth Catering / Paper Goods & Groom’s-Cake Label: Pat Ramseur Design / Photography: Zachary Hunt Photography

Other cool stuff: I’ve made enough Halloween costumes to know not to get too crazy over details—most of the time, if you cover the main ideas, people subconsciously fill in the rest themselves. So I knew as long as we kept everything fun, unpretentious, and clever, we would get the wedding we wanted. The reception was at a biergarten/old-man social hall. Almost all the centerpiece items came from thrift stores. Instead of table numbers (since we didn’t have a seating chart) I typed fascinating facts about Gary and me on index cards. We had barbecue for dinner (although my mom insisted on German potato salad because it was “nicer” than regular potato salad). The groom’s cake was a giant Twinkie. Since my family is from Ohio, my mom made 600 buckeyes (chocolate-covered peanut butter balls endemic to that state) from my grandmother’s recipe for the dessert table. We are a decidedly un-schmoopie couple, so our first dance was Diana Ross’s “Love Hangover;” after 45 seconds of slow-jam steaminess it turns into the sickest disco song ever, whence everyone came to join us. Our friends’ rockabilly-ish band, The Sutcliffes, played. Then Gary’s (Neil Diamond cover) band played, and we danced with a microphone between us as he sang “Heartlight” to me. (Did you know “Heartlight” is about E.T.? It’s true!) Then he surprised me by singing “It’s Too Late to Turn Back Now,” the 70s soul song. (Don’t worry, it’s a lot more romantic than the title suggests.) Oh, and after our (amazing, emotional, Catholic) ceremony we went to my favorite grocery store to take pictures, then we rejoined the wedding party in time to relax and get a betting pool going on the Kentucky Derby.

One sentence sum up of the wedding vibe: A fun, funny, un-fussy Texas throwdown with plenty of family, friends, and our own version of romance.

Favorite thing about the wedding: I was completely entranced when Gary said his vows. His conviction was so clear and powerful that I physically felt his words. Also, that I caught the chicken.

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