If only you knew how special April is for me. Three years ago today it was a beautiful day in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida. Sun was shining bright, sky was blue, light breeze felt soothing on the skin and birds were chirping in a cheery chorus. My dearest grandfather held my hand and walked me down the aisle where I tied the knot with the love of my life. Here I am three years later, more in love than I ever was, feeling butterflies every morning I wake up. Yes, yes, it’s that time of the year when I get all cheesy, sentimental and romantic and tell you all about our beautiful wedding
and share gazillion photos. Bare with me today.Like many other cliché love stories, ours started at work during lunch time five years ago in April (where does the time fly?). We both lived and worked in my hometown Tbilisi. In a year, we went on a vacation to Dubai where Mr. B popped the question and put the ring on my finger. We thought Florida would have been a perfect place for the big day, and somehow the choice fell on April 28th. Thus a year of endless wedding planning began. Traditional Georgian weddings are quite different from American ones, so I had loads to catch up on. Distance wedding planning was not making things easier as we had to make all choices based on photos and Skype interviews versus one-on-one meetings with vendors. Although, where there is a will there is a way and we ended up having an unforgettable day shared with our dearest family and friends. I couldn’t be thankful enough to everyone who arrived from near or afar to help us out and share this day with us.
The day started with sipping on a glass of bubbly and getting ready with my lovely girls on a terrace of our suite overlooking a beautiful garden of Frenchmen’s Reserve Country Club. [I must give huge shout-out to Mr. B and the family who were frantically running around setting up the ceremony sight while we were being totally pampered.] Then it was time to put that princess dress on. I was wearing an off-white lacy gown from White by Vera Wang, while my bridesmaids had individually-styled dresses in the shades of blush pink. It was so special to have my mom next to me and help me get dressed, little details that you keep cherishing in your heart for the rest of your life.
And of course the wedding would have never been complete without my sweetest grandfather (whom I lost past December :( ) and my dearest girlfriends being by my side!
I want to give special shout-out to my wedding photographer Leah Langley Photography, who did an outstanding job (as you can see) on our wedding photos. Planning a wedding is no joke and it is so important to work with vendors who listen, give advice and deliver. Priority number one for me was to have good quality wedding photos as a nice reminder of all the beautiful moments we had that day, so I had not one, not two, but three photographers capturing every step. I couldn’t have been happier with Leah and her wonderful team (Jordan Weiland Photography and Kathy Tomas Photography) because they went out and about to photograph everything in the best way possible. Forgive a bit of vanity fair as I share some of the portraits they captured.
At 5 p.m. it was time to head down to say “I do” to my man. The wedding ceremony was held in a charming garden at the clubhouse.
After we said our vows it was time for some fun photo session, while our guests enjoyed the cocktail hour with drinks and hors d’oeuvres. Once we were done with foolin’ around it was time to party! The reception was held in the dining hall. We decided to incorporate things we love and are meaningful to us in one way or another into our decorations: books, palm trees, Georgian drinking vessels, military sword, etc. Once we had the first dance and father-daughter/mother-son dances my girlfriends and I threw a little surprise for the guests and performed traditional Georgian dance – Acharuli – which we had rehearsed months before the wedding.After that it was all about cutting the cake and then dancing our hearts out as the cocktails kept flowing and music was jamming on. Oh, and instead of tradition little gifts for our guests we decided to rent a photobooth which turned out be a huge success and tons of fun! One big piece of advice that I picked up from reading wedding blogs and magazines was not to stress on the day of the wedding. If there are any future brides reading this, I want to reiterate this advice. The thing is, you spend months and maybe even years to plan ONE day and the most important thing is to be in the moment, ENJOY that day as much as possible (because it will be over before you know it) and celebrate LOVE. Who cares if the flower bouquet didn’t turn out to be exactly the way you wanted (mine didn’t)? Or, if DJ messed up the music as you were about to walk down the aisle? (Oh yes, he did!). Guess what? Months later you will laugh out loud about it all (if you even remember it at all). Perfect wedding is not the one where everything goes the way you planned, it’s a day you have a time of your life with that one and only person you plan to spend the rest of your life with. I am the happiest girl in the world because I had a blast on my own wedding day, more so than any party I have ever been to. Flipping through my wedding album from time to time is my secret guilty pleasure, seeing those smiles on the faces of our guests and little details of the day just warms my heart. I cannot wait for more travels, adventures, silly arguments, tickles, warm cuddles, hot kisses, discrete slaps on the butt, and so much more as we grow old. Together is a wonderful place to be! And right as I hit publish on this post we are off to celebrate our special day with an epic anniversary dinner at Joel Robuchon Restaurant…. Cheers! Love and be loved my friends.