My friends! It is with great pleasure and gratitude that I share some of our favourite wedding photos with you!
Here we are walking down the boardwalk “aisle” to a deck on the inlet side of Tofino, where our family and friends waited, overlooking the mountains, the water, and the incredible west coast wildlife. It was 10 am on the beautiful and sunny June 17th.
Why yes, my wedding shoes ARE Birkenstocks! I highly recommend wearing comfortable shoes for this wedding – PLUS, I still wear them every day and enjoy them!
We walked down the aisle to a local musician playing an acoustic version of “Sweet Child of Mine” by Guns n Roses. We chose this because it’s one of our road trip songs, and because the acoustic version is really beautiful!
Okay, time to tell the story about my wedding dress.
Last year, in June, I flew home to visit my family. I wanted to tell them in person that Sweetie and I were getting married. It was a great decision, because the hugs I received in spontaneous joy were so much better than an excited voice over the phone!
I spent a couple of days with my sister, and when she asked what I wanted to do, I asked her to help me shop for a wedding dress. This was particularly special because we knew it was unlikely she would be able to attend the wedding, so buying the dress with her was a great way to have her be a part of the wedding.
We went to The Bay, which, for non-Canadians, is kind of like our Nordstrom. My sister actually picked this dress out, and when I put it on, I *knew* it was the right one. It fit beautifully, it flattered me, it felt fantastic. It was a bit pricey, but my mother used to tell me if I ever got married, to not try and save money on the dress, the flowers, or the photos, because the dress and the flowers made the photos beautiful, and your photos were what you had to keep in memory of your wedding day for the rest of your life. So I bit the bullet and decided it was better to get this dress, on this day, with my sister.
We went to the checkout… and the dress rang through at 50% off. This was a brand new dress at the time, *not* on sale, but for some reason the last-season discount was being applied to it. Actually, the last season discount was only 30% off, so where on earth was this 50% discount coming from!?
My sister elbowed me and pointed to the price. I elbowed her back, with a wide-eyed “I KNOW! SHHHH!” They took my money and we left – absolutely giddy with the massive “deal” we had just been granted!
My sister said, “I think that was Mom.” I agreed. “I think you’re right.” For most of our childhood, if we *reeeeealllly* wanted something “luxurious” like a designer pair of jeans or a Northern Reflections sweatshirt (it was the 90s in Northern Ontario, and that’s what was cool) our mother would pay half.
Were she still alive and with us on that shopping trip, she surely would have paid half the cost of my dress. It’s wonderful how our family in spirit can still participate in our lives, in these miraculous, unexpected ways!
So that’s the story of my dress.
Here we are at the driftwood “alter”. That’s Judy, our officiant, who has married hundreds of people over the years and is in thousands of wedding photos. She also worked at the hospital here, so she was my co-worker for a few years before she retired, and she has married several other hospital couples! Judy is truly a part of our Tofino family!
Sweetie is so unbelievably photogenic, I can’t even believe it. She had those little blush roses braided into her hair that morning.
Here we are! Married! Each with our mothers’ wedding rings.
Immediately after the ceremony, we went out on to the inlet for some couple’s photos. These are two of our favorites:
This one I had just told Sweetie a silly joke, probably a pun.
This photo we had enlarged and framed for our living room:
Doesn’t she just GLOW!? I’m so grateful to our photographer, Marnie Recker.
Here I am. I really love the effect of our bouquets. Sweetie and I have the same flowers in our bouquets, but different colors to coordinate with our dress. If you can see the little red berries in them, those are huckleberries and edible! They grow wild all over here.
The peonies in our bouquets are similar to the ones my mother used to grow in her garden at our house in North Bay. Hygrangea and cala lillies are my favourites, Sweetie picked the tiny roses, the eucalyptus, and the huckleberries. The broad green leaves are salal, which also grows wild here and produces lovely blueberry-like fruit.
The same flowers decorated our wedding cake:
This is one of our favorite candid moments.
The cake turned out beautifully. It is milk-free because Sweetie has a milk allergy, so this resulted in a LOT of time and discussion going into our wedding cake options. In the end, we went with a chocolate ganash, and the florist provided the flowers to coordinate with our boquets.
We also provided cupcakes for our gluten-free guests, and just for funsies. The cupcakes had little bits of gold leaf and cute johnny jump-up pansies on them… also flowers which remind me of my mother! (Sweetie let me pretty much dominate the flower game – she picked most of the music.)
Oh music! Our dear friend who spend years as a professional DJ, and who has MC’d at most of our friends’ weddings, took Sweetie’s spotify wedding playlist and put together a compilation which played in the background during brunch.
Here is Sweetie’s “Oh Honey,” face.
After brunch, we received an urgent message from Marnie the photographer. There was a *sundog* on the beach!!! Could we get there NOW!?
This is another story.
See, I was really hoping to see a rainbow on our wedding day. I asked for it, but I wasn’t going to be sad or disappointing if it didn’t happen. My mother told me she saw a rainbow after her mother’s funeral, and I saw one the day of my mother’s funeral. I also saw an incredible rainbow display the first time I saw orcas, and I was sure that my own spirit family was there that day. I wrote about that here.
June 17, 2018 was a HOT day, and miraculously sunny considering we live in the rainforest. As soon as I saw the weather and felt the heat, I let go of the idea of seeing a rainbow on my wedding day. Rainbows happen when it’s misty, or rainy, not when it’s 25 C for the first time that year.
And that’s why I consider this sundog to be our private miracle. We did get a rainbow. We got a RARE rainbow made from ice crystals in the atmosphere… on a 25 C day!
We got a giant orb in the sky!
I believe this wasn’t only my family, I believe it was both of our families who collaborated to create this incredible atmospheric phenomenon in the sky on our wedding day. A rainbow, the symbol of gay pride, a ring, the symbol of infinity and marriage, in the sky in time for our beach photos.
We had this photo enlarged and framed it too:
We danced to the sound of the waves and our laughter.
And every year we take a photo of ourselves wearing sunglasses on the beach. We took a photo similar to this and posted it to facebook when we changed our status to “in a relationship” and we’ve been collecting sunglasses on the beach photos ever since!
To the rest of our lives together! Thank you my blog friends for sharing in our happiness!