Sunday, November 6, 2011

Going to the Chapel

The day I became Mrs. Coelho and married the man of my dreams, my prince charming and my best friend was the happiest day of my life.  I cannot even begin to describe to you the feelings or what it was like because I've never felt so many emotions at once.  The entire weekend I felt like I was in a dream and floating on cloud nine.  It was blissful!!

Probably about a year after dating, Josh and I's parents parents met each other for the first time at a Mexican restaurant here in Carlsbad, CA.  I remember it so vividly; I was so excited and happy about this little get together.  During dinner I remember saying to Josh "Can you believe these people are here all together just because of us?".  It was a surreal feeling to have the people we care about most in our lives meet and get together.  Well the wedding was the same feeling multiplied by 100.  Here we were surrounded by 200 of our family and closest friends and they were all here because of Josh and I.  I have never felt so much love and happiness in my life.  It was so beautiful!!

Wedding shows like "Bridezillas", "Say Yes to the Dress" and "My Fair Wedding" make such a big deal about weddings but not in the right way.  They put so much emphasis on the details (the flowers, the location, the dress, the food), but they forget the most important parts: the people and the reason everyone is there, the love of two people.  I know I may sound cheezy, but having just been through the whole wedding planning process its easy to get sucked into the details and want the "perfect" wedding that every girl dreams of or sees on TV.  But at the end of the day, I have to tell you that none of that matters and all that matters is that you are marrying the man of your dreams.  To be honest I was a little nervous about the rain (it had poured on the Friday before the wedding) and a few of the details, but I think that it could have poured buckets and I still would have been the happiest girl alive.  

Josh and I were blessed to be married in the same church my parents got married in 25 years ago, St. George's Serbian Orthodox Church.  Its a gorgeous church with its mosaic icons from floor to ceiling and to know that my parents were also married there made it even more beautiful.  The whole ceremony was truly ethereal.  To the non-Orthodox person the service is probably long and very non-traditional.  It involves an exchange of rings at the back of the church, the bride and groom walking together down the altar, candles, crowns, tying of hands and a ceremonial walk around the altar.  Each act during the service has a meaning, but my favorite has to be when the maid of honor and the best man hold crowns over the bride and groom to symbolize that they are now king and queen of their own home together.  Later I heard that at a few key points during the service (like right after we exchanged our rings) the sun came out and light filled the church on an otherwise overcast and rainy day.

After the ceremony the party began at the Admiral Kidd Club which sits on the San Diego Bay and has a spectacular view of downtown San Diego and the rest of the bay.  The rest of the evening was quite honestly the best night of my life.  Josh and I danced the night away and I cried some happy tears at least a couple times during the night.  I have to be honest that I wasn't the biggest fan of planning the wedding.  Josh was deployed, I was looking for a job and the last thing I wanted to do was plan a wedding.  I know it may sound weird because ever since I was little I dreamed and yes, secretly planned my wedding.  I probably mentioned the idea of eloping about a dozen times to Josh.  Seeing the smile on my dad's face that night and the tears as he gave me away and being surrounded by all our friends and families and sharing this special moment with everyone made every ounce of planning worth it.  I wouldn't have wanted our wedding to go any other way. 

By the end of the night by mouth was sore from smiling so much and my feet were sore from dancing all night long, but it was the BEST night of our lives.  Josh and I are still reliving the day's events over and over in our heads.  Our conversations now pretty much go like this: "Remember when I got lifted in the air on the chair before the garter toss?  What about when your brother sang that beautiful song, wasn't that so great? 

Daddy's Girl (he always makes me cry)
I want to thank everyone who came to help celebrate this special day in our lives.  I know lots of people traveled far and took off work.  We are soooo sooo happy for every person who came.  Having you there is what made this day so special for us.  And I want to thank my parents for hosting such a beautiful event!  It was the wedding every girl dreams of.  And also thank you to Josh's parents for hosting the rehearsal dinner and drinks and for being so supportive of me, especially when Josh was gone.  And a HUGE thank you to my Aunt Natasha for making the dress of my dreams.  I felt like such a princess having a custom made dress :).  And of course, thank you to my husband ( :) I smile everytime I say that) for always being there for me even when you were thousands of miles away.  Here's to the rest of our lives and a beautiful life together!  If this is what the kickoff to our marriage is like I can't wait to see what is in store for us in the future.

And P.S.  None of these photos are the "official" wedding photos yet.  So thank you thank you to all of you who took these photos!!

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