A Homemade, Rustic Wedding in California

...Did I mention I was six months pregnant?!

Bristol, Middle School Drama Teacher & John, High School Director of Marketing and Admissions

One sentence sum-up of the wedding vibe: A homemade, local, rustic, spiritual, relaxed celebration that honored our families, our love, and the new life we are creating together.

Soundtrack for reading: “Solace” by Scott Joplin—We used it for the processional, with Bristol walking in time to the beautiful final movement.

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Other Cool Stuff We Should Know About

I didn’t fully realize how much of a DIY wedding this was! I love doing arts and crafts, but rarely make time for personal projects as a middle school drama teacher, so the wedding was an excellent excuse to do things I love—rummaging through antique stores and getting creative. John and I were so happy that it was all done in less than two months without stress. I did the wedding design on my own (invitation, ring jars, curated china from the thrift shop, antique decor, etc.), but there were a ton of little details that I had dreamed up that we were only able to see come to life through the help of friends and family. Some of the coolest things were my mom’s homemade cherry pie sitting next to the wedding cake, my brother’s painted washboard signs, John’s mom’s fans, my dad’s sloppy handwriting on the thank you succulent jars, my Maid of Honor Nena’s handwriting on my vows and on the instructions for our Family Devotional (instead of a guestbook). I could really go on and on listing everyone, but this isn’t my Oscar acceptance speech. Suffice it to say, the vendors kept telling me how relaxed and happy everyone was during the wedding. I think it’s because everyone enjoyed getting together and helping out, and that allowed John and me to stay positive. And as a bride, my advice is to keep the mindset that, at this point, it’s all in motion, and there’s nothing you can do now, so just go with it and trust the people around you to solve any problems that come up!

Favorite Thing About the wedding

In John’s words, “It was all good.” The day was a beautiful representation of our families coming together, of the special spirituality and energy we felt, of the, umm… did I mention I was six months pregnant?! The pregnancy is an important part of the wedding because not only did it speed up the time frame, but also it helped us to understand the significance of the commitment of marriage. We decided to have the wedding during my summer vacation so we could focus on each other and enjoy a honeymoon (the perks of teaching); but now when I look back at our wedding, it has taken on this spiritual representation of life. Like a tree or circle of life, all of the choices we made were informed by our families, reflected our past, and now illuminate our future. Everything was truly perfect because we focused on what mattered—our family and the close friends who will now be supporting us in our next step. With TBD being a part of it, our wedding truly marks the beginning of our family—one that is built on the wisdom and love from those who have nurtured us into two adults prepared to continue the circle of love. (But after all that mushy stuff, our photos come in at an AWESOME second! Thank you Rad + In Love.)


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