Thursday, November 5, 2009

Countdown to the Anniversary: The Ceremony!

Let's see, where did we leave was just about go time! My bridesmaids left the hotel room and went downstairs. My dad and I stayed in the room...and I was fighting some serious tears. Finally, we got the green light, and headed down. We were instructed to wait way down the hall, around the corner, because Matt was standing there waiting to go in. Exciting!!! Dad and I stood, hiding, and then I suddenly realized that I was standing in front of several ladies having high tea at the hotel! I mean, they had hats and everything. They asked me if I had just gotten married, or if I was going to get married right now. I said that I was about to get married, and probably giggled nervously. I have no idea why I felt so nervous...but I just did!

Finally, it was time. The conservatory where we got married was down a long hallway, so Dad and I had lots of time to talk. My BIL Kelley was filming the whole thing, as I walked down the hallway fighting the ugly cry face. Dad told me a couple of dirty jokes to make me giggle!

But anyway...back to the photos. Here is my mom and Matt waiting to walk in. This is one of my favorite photos! (have you noticed I say that about almost EVERY photo??!)

Mom, looking excited

Jenn, looking out-of-control excited

Lisa, looking in-control happy

My Grandma being escorted by my cousin John

...and here is HER BIL, my great-uncle Glenn, looking excited and taking a photo of Grandma. Please note that everyone else is clearly super bored. Hahaha!

My MIL being escorted down the aisle by her brother Jack, with my FIL walking behind
My mom, escorted by my Granddad
The boys walking in with our officiant, John
Bridesmaid Catherine
Bridesmaid Anna
Bridesmaid Lisa
A quick teary photo of my mom
MOH Jenn
Cuteness factor! Jaylanne and Cooper. Adorable!

My turn!
I wish I could remember the look on Matt's face. I can't, but thankfully I have this photo!

See? Pushing back the veil wasn't anywhere near as scary for the real deal as it was during the rehearsal. :)

We had what you would call ... a very nontraditional ceremony. Neither Matt nor I are religious, and instead opted for my favorite college professor, John, to officiate at our wedding. John is really indescribable...and let's just say that our ceremony will always be remembered as one of the wackiest! John made some general announcements in the beginning, such as...the bride and groom will receive you at the reception afterwards, and don't forget that TVs are switching from analog to digital in a few months...and then he did a brief Cialis commercial. Ha! We sat during his little monologue, and then we had a few readers.
My Granddad read an excerpt from Letters to a Young Poet by Rainer Maria Rilke:

For one human being to love another human being: that is perhaps the most difficult task that has been entrusted to us, the ultimate task, the final test and proof, the work for which all other work is merely preparation.

Marriage naturally combines the strengths and wills of two people so that, together they seem to reach farther into the future than they did before. Above all, marriage is a new task and a new seriousness -- a new demand on the strength and generosity of each partner.

The point of marriage is not to create a quick commonality by tearing down all boundaries. On the contrary, a good marriage is one in which each partner appoints the other to be the guardian of his or her solitude, and thus they show each other the greatest possible trust. A merging of two people is an impossibility, and where it seems to exist, it is a hemming-in, a mutual consent that robs one party or both parties of their fullest freedom and development. But once the realization is accepted that even between the closest people infinite distances exist, a marvelous living side-by-side can grow up for them, if they succeed in loving the expanse between them, which gives them the possibility of always seeing each other as a whole and before an immense sky.

Love is a high inducement for the individual to ripen, to become something in yourself, to become world, to become world in yourself for the sake of another person; it is a great, demanding claim on a person, something that chooses you and calls you to vast distances.

Matt's sister Mindy read a letter from Abigail to John Adams, December 23, 1782:

My Dearest Friend,

...should I draw you the picture of my heart it would be what I hope you would still love though it contained nothing new. The early possession you obtained there, and the absolute power you have obtained over it, leaves not the smallest space unoccupied.

I look back to the early days of our acquaintance and friendship as to the days of love and innocence, and, with an indescribable pleasure, I have seen near a score of years roll over our heads with an affection heightened and improved by time, nor have the dreary years of absence in the smallest degree effaced from my mind the image of the dear untitled man to whom I gave my heart.

My cousin Erin read Oh the Places You'll Go, by Dr Seuss. I'm not putting that here, though,'s too long. :)
Then, it was time for vows and rings. There was lots of funny stuff in here,, Shaina, do you take Matt as your husband, and promise to love him as much as you love Oscar? Matt, do you take Shaina as your wife, and promise to love her as much as you love your Fender Stratocaster? John had taken careful notes about us and our relationship, and he put it all together. It was funny, loving, and sooo us. Plus, when was the last time you went to a wedding that involved raucous laughter??!

Since our ceremony was relatively short, we decided to incorporate the signing of the marriage license into the program.

Mr. and Mrs. Smith!
It was clearly a happy moment for me...I seriously do not think I have ever seen myself smile that big! My mouth looks MASSIVE!

Had to include this one of my parents walking out...they both look so happy!
One of my favorites. For real. Taken right after the ceremony.
Wow, so many photos! This has been so fun for me. Up next...portraits!
*all photos taken by Patrick Abel of Special Moments Photography*


Lisa said...

Shaina - that is the worst picture of myself I have ever seen.

Second - please don't kid the people into thinking he briefly mentioned Cialis. He talked about Cialis and Matt's "woody" for a good 2-3 minutes.


Brittany Ann said...

Weddings = My favorite times! Yay!

Jackie said...

aww, so sweet! you guys look so happy :)

p.s. you're mom is beautiful!

Ms. Attitude said...

That seems like a great ceremony!

kd said...

Your ceremony sounds like so much fun!

Lucy Marie said...

I love it. The look on your groom's face is a look you never want to forget. My very favourite picture from our wedding is one that a friend shot while I was walking down the aisle and the photographer was focused on me. It's priceless.

But vowing to love him more than Oscar? Come on .. that's a pretty steep request John!

Lucky in Love said...

Okay...I got a little teary with the last photo :) How sweet!

And can I just say that your mother is smoking hot! I mean...seriously. Gorgeous.

Oh...and you looked great too :) Really...just beautiful! And where the ceremony was held...perfect!

Jenn said...

LOVE these - and love that your ceremony had so many personal touches. i adore that kind of stuff.

we had a very non-traditional ceremony too! :)

Crazy Shenanigans said...

Aw, super great pictures! Your bridesmaids dresses were really cute!

Taryn said...

Oh my- sounds like a fun and memorable wedding for sure! (and super special- the way weddings should be.)

d.a.r. said...


Seriously, you may be one of the most beautiful brides I have ever seen. I adore your dress and you just exude love and happiness!