MARRIED AUGUST 19TH, 2017
When you have a twin, there are so many perks that the two of you share. Perks like having a built-in best friend, reading each other’s minds, finishing each other’s sentences, and understanding what the other person would want in a romantic partner. That last perk is particularly important for this story. About five years ago, my twin sister, Jessica, set me up on a blind date with Jacob, a friend of her boyfriend’s, who she said would be perfect for me. Jacob and I went on a double date with my sister and her boyfriend, and when it came to an end, Jacob and I continued to hang out and talk until three in the morning! With chemistry like that, you’d think that the rest was smooth sailing. However, on our second date, we shared our first kiss, and once I got home, I immediately told my sister how awkward I was. Worried that Jacob wouldn't be in to me after that, I sent him a text to apologize for my awkwardness. Coincidentally, as soon as I hit send, I got a text from Jacob with the same message to me. That's when I knew we were both on the same page; that my sister was right all along.
Three years later, on Easter weekend, Jacob and I were at his parents’ farm, where we spent most of our weekends together. With the winter thaw, it had been muddy in the weeks leading up to Easter, but since the snow started again the night before our visit, everything was frozen again. Jacob suggested that we should go for a walk while the ground was frozen, even in the snowy weather. We always seemed to get caught in rain on our walks (literally every time), so I figured why not. We were walking on trails by the river, past my favourite willow tree; once, twice, and by the third time I was complaining about how cold my feet were and how I wanted to go inside. Little did I know that Jacob was working up the courage to ask me a very big question, and here I was complaining. Jacob wanted to do one more lap, so I begrudgingly went along. The next time we passed the tree, Jacob said my name from behind me, which I thought was weird since he was right beside me a few seconds earlier. When I turned around, Jacob was down on one knee. He barely had the words out before I jumped into his arms with a big ‘YES’, as he spun me around in the falling snow. It was the most perfect moment and I will never forget that feeling!
We enjoyed our engagement for a few months, and then in the summer of 2015, we started our wedding plans. First on the list was finding a venue and choosing our date. After visiting a few locations, nothing stood out to us. We made an appointment with Ashton at the St. Marys Golf & Country Club, and right from our very first step into the Ballroom, we felt warm and comfortable. Ashton was so personable, knowledgeable and helpful, and it was honestly the best visit we had experienced at a venue. Immediately after our first meeting, I knew St. Marys was exactly what I had been looking for.
Once we had our wedding date, we started booking the rest of our vendors. Based on referrals from Ashton, who I knew would recommend the best options to us, we chose The Cake Box for our wedding cake, Music Central for our DJ services, and Cherrey Bus Lines for guest transportation – all of whom I cannot say enough great things about.
For our décor and floral, we went with SMGCC’s preferred vendors, Above & Beyond Event Design and Lyric Flowers. And oh my goodness, am I ever so incredibly happy that we did. They completely brought my vision of whimsical romance to life – everything was absolutely gorgeous! The design at the pergola was beyond anything I had hoped for. With a crystal chandelier, loosely-strung pearls, curly willows, and tons of greenery and white floral, it honestly felt like a dream come true standing up there for our ceremony. Our head table design was simply breathtaking. With flowing drapery, crystal chandeliers that matched the one in the pergola, lots of candlelight, and a glowing marquee sign that read ‘LOVE’, it was the perfect reception setting. I wouldn’t have changed a single thing. And crazy enough, I had done our floral consult over the phone, as I had sprained my ankle right before the meeting and couldn’t drive. So, I didn’t know what to expect on the day of our wedding, but our arrangements were more than I had even imagined they would be!
Browsing for photographers, I instantly fell in love with the work of Shawn Van Daele, who is based out of London, Ontario. His photos were just so vibrant and artistic, and I loved the way he seemed to perfectly capture a moment – it was everything I wanted for our wedding album, and I was not disappointed. Shawn took the most amazing photos for us. He managed to convey how we were feeling in every moment throughout the day. He even captured the whimsical romantic feel of our décor perfectly. We couldn’t be happier with how they turned out – we love every single photograph!
In the midst of all of our vendor meetings, I made an appointment to try on wedding dresses at Ferre Sposa on Bloor Street, in Toronto. After trying on a few different styles, I was fitted into a Kenneth Winston strapless a-line gown that was adorned with lace through it’s fitted bodice, flowing skirt, and sweetheart neckline. From the moment I slipped into the dress, it felt comfortable, and when I looked in the mirror, I felt beautiful. One of my bridesmaids pointed out that it was the only dress I had done a little happy dance in, so it was an easy decision. I had found my dress!
When it came to planning the details of the day with SMGCC, their event team made the whole experience so stress-free, relaxed, and truly unforgettable. Ashton made planning so easy, effortless and enjoyable – she is just so organized! Since she went off on maternity leave about a month before our wedding, Courtney took over the process, and it was such a seamless transition. She helped us feel confident with the final details and talked us through how the day would ensue. When the big day finally rolled around, I remember being able to just show up and not worry about a single thing. Our Maitre D’, Taryn, had run through a full rehearsal with us the night before, accommodated any little request that came up, and made sure everything ran smoothly during our wedding. Jacob and I were always in the moment, and were able to fully enjoy celebrating with each other and our loved ones.
Aside from how incredibly happy I am with how our whole wedding turned out, and how thankful I am to St. Marys and all of our other amazing vendors, there are four significant moments from that day that I will cherish the most. First, when my bridesmaids saw me in my wedding dress for the first time, and the expressions on their faces. Next, when my Dad saw me in my dress for the first time and just lost it! It was such an emotional, memorable moment for both of us. Third, the speech my sister and brother prepared together, which was sweet and so unexpectedly hilarious that I cried from laughing so hard! And lastly, but most significant, was the moment I saw Jacob. It was hard enough trying to keep it together before the ceremony, but as I walked down the aisle, and looked at him standing there – floodgates of happiness! I wasn't alone. Jacob was waiting at the end of the aisle with a handshake for my Dad, and a big happy smile for me. So, much like being on the same page about our awkward first kiss, we were again on the same page about our very first day as husband and wife. A truly perfect day that I will never forget.
Story by Kristen Nuhn
Photography by Van Daele & Russell Photography