Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Mr & Mrs Deverson

All 49 wedding attendees
With all the planning done, the day was upon us. Not saying there weren't a few stressful moments with an additional last minute beach ceremony location change. We went from the beach with restoration works happening, to the gazebo at Barnegat Lighthouse State Park, to another beach in Loveladies Township, which we chose just two days before the wedding. 

But the morning of the wedding, I had a to-do list from Amy with only a few small check ups and deliveries that needed to be made, and I even had a moment to dash to the beach for a quick dip before me and the best man made our way down to the beach ceremony. With perfect timing just buttoning up our shirts and a helpful lady helping with our boutonnieres, just as the bridal party arrived. Short on seats, our friend and celebrant for the day, Phil got forgotten about for a good few minutes baking away squashed in the boot (trunk) of the Subaru. He did later emerge slightly cranky and a tad sweaty. 

We had organized a few kiwi blokes to be in charge of setting up the beach with chairs and a few decorations, and they also did a brilliant job of handing out bubbles and programs.

As a bride and her entourage do, Amy spent the morning with her ladies getting all pampered with beauticians and hairdressers and the sorts. Dressed in a shiny silk gown with the obligatory new initials AJD. Going against the tradition, they did emerge on time but of course looking splendid. 

The only small mishap that I heard of was with Grandma Louise ironing Amy's Dad's dress shirt and some rust residue came off from the iron. Nothing a fast turn around from a local dry cleaners couldn't sort out though.

A few pre-wedding photos with the famous local photographer Ann Cohen, chasing seagulls, jumping in waves and that sort of shenanigans and then Amy and the Bridesmaids snuck off across the dunes and through someone's private property in order to hide from the guests and get back to the top of the dune to make her walk.

The guests were seated, well minus the late cousins. Elliott, Brady and Juliet gracefully and playfully set the stage for Amy's entrance along with her father.

We worked hard to make this wedding fully about us, leaving out our family member's opinions, and having it completely represent who we are as a couple. It started when we asked Amy's cousin Jodi's partner AJ to play the guitar during our ceremony, and he had full creative reign on that. Having a great friend preside over the ceremony was the perfect touch, with his words being genuine, meaningful and so relevant to us. 

We also had Charlotte read the poem 'Love' by Roy Croft, which we had picked out, which was emotional for the two of us to listen to, but also meant so much to include Char in the ceremony. Everything could not have been more perfect, a beautiful day, with the ocean behind us and surrounded by our closest friends and family.

Now a few more photos with the family and we were off to the reception, driving the RX7 in style as our newlywed car. 

Graced with reggae and NZ-dub, guests sipped the signature cocktail: Blueberry Thyme Mimosas and sank craft beers. Our caterers Kate and Ally's passed hors d'oeuvres which we had selected months earlier and a mild wind off the bay kept the temperature ideal but caused a bit of havoc on some centerpieces. 

The friends we've met in New Zealand
Again, the venue was right to our dreams. Looking out over the bay and nature preserve, it was elegant but understated and truly represented Amy and myself. All of Amy's hard work was evident, with so many personal touches, from using my surfboard as a seating chart, our sign post showing where everyone had traveled from, centerpieces in pint glasses chosen from our collection, and many map and travel themed accents which she handmade.

The evening flowed casually with a premeditated playlist I created timed to the night. Amy and I had our first dance to our favorite song, Shapeshifter - One, with our nephews running laps around us. Later Amy and her father had a dance to Tom Petty - Wild Flowers. We even paid tribute to Amy's Greek heritage with a few Greek dances! 

The fantastic food kept flowing with a buffet dinner, but a shortage of beer required a bottle shop run by one of the venue staff. Taylor Swift songs were a crowd favorite but not able to compete with Pendulum or the wide eyed viewing by our American guests to the Devo and NZ-Crew throwing some huge moves to Nero -  Crush on You. Many of our guests who would had never witnessed such bass heavy and glitch zapping music and dance moves.

My brother John, my Best Man delivered a perfect Maori greeting and a powerful but humorous speech followed by some truly heart felt words from Amy's Matron of Honor, her sister Nicole. Less serious was my father's words in his usual fashion and Amy's Dad, Ted delivering a more traditional welcome to the family. 

Right at sunset we snuck out for a few final photos on the marsh, including acro-yoga, many many smiles, kisses and on my request a very posed shot with the RX7.

Of course the day flew by so fast, but thats just the way it is when you're having a blast. It was the day of our dreams and it was made only possible by all our family and friends who made the journey. Whether from far or near, by helicopter, plane, bus, train or car. It means the world to us, all those who were with us for the day. 

Capping off the night with a beer on the beach, it was a perfect cool evening with the sand, sea and stars.

Mr & Mrs Deverson

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