7 Things I Learned By Getting Married

"Atop The City of Light"
(Yes the background images were taken from the top of the Eiffel Tower in Paris; you can see more of our honeymoon pics here!!)

Oh geez where to even start ... how best to put into words what this other human means to me? Well it went a little something like this: I met the most beautiful, intelligent, kind, hilarious, obnoxiously talented, funny, and perfectly strange girl I could have ever dreamt up. Then, I somehow tricked this once-in-a-lifetime-lady into committing the rest of her lifetime to my crazy ass. (Insert evil cackle here.) Last August I married Sara and I can't say I'll ever do a smarter thing for the rest of my days. Sorry to get all mushy-gushy, but she is absolutely the greatest and I'm so very lucky to have her...... forever (evil laughter ensues). Here are some things I learned about getting married...

1. I have no future as a wedding planner....

I don't know about you people, but I officially do not have secret plans to become a wedding planner. IT'S HARD FREAKIN WORK!!!! This wedding definitely would not have been what it was without an unfathomable amount of hours spent counting, arranging, recounting, rearranging, finding, moving, removing, replacing, negotiating, calling, creating, haggling, more counting, writing, rewriting, and many a tough decision ...... most of the credit should probably go to my bride, she was (and is) truly incredible.  We really did pull off our dream wedding and I'm so very thankful for the time and effort we (and our family and friends...but mostly Sara) put into making it happen.  

2. Getting married is like doing a weird time-altering drug ... or something

The whole wedding day is such a strange time to look back on; it all does sort of feel like a perfectly wonderful dream I had. We'd been working towards this impending day for so long, but then suddenly all the little pieces were falling into place and it was happening all around us. Moments seemed to be flying by in seconds and taking their sweet time all at once. Thankfully through the haze of over-boiling emotions and lots of tasty-adult-type-beverages, someone was there to capture all the special moments.

3. Find a photographer you're super comfortable with ... also they should take amazing photos. (duh)

Obviously being a photographer myself, finding the perfect wedding photog was one of the most important pieces of the wedding puzzle (for me at least). Lucky for us this turned out to be one very easy decision to make. You see Sara's Uncle Bill (& mine too now I guess!) is a wonderful photographer and was gracious enough to shoulder the responsibility of documenting our wedding day; he is so talented. When it comes to natural light and beautiful scenery he really shines. (You should check out his work!) Uncle Bill's photographic style can only be described as poetic.  

So let's just say we were certainly comfortable with our photographer. It was so relaxing to know we were in good hands, and that in those good hands was a good lens. Our little portrait session off in the vineyards was such a fun and happy experience. Whether or not you're lucky enough to have a skilled uncle to hire as your photographer, I highly recommend you find someone you really trust and connect with.

4. Smiling for photos comes really easily when you're stupidly giddy about life.

I think my face still hurts from the amount of uncontrollable grinning I did that day. It really is the perfect occasion to have your picture taken over and over again because...
A. You're majorly "dressed to the 9's"...whatever that look awesome.  
B. You just can't not have a giant genuine smile plastered across your face.
C.  Did I mention how good you look?

5. Photo Booths are ALWAYS a good idea ... always.

In addition to hiring Uncle Bill, we decided to have a photo booth as our "wedding favor." Having a photo booth really is such an epic-win-win-situation for everyone.  First of all it takes some of the pressure off of your photographer to get photos of absolutely everyone; this way all of your guests file into the booth at some point throughout the night. Second, rather than ending up with several kinda awkward photos in which groupings of people are half-eating and half-smiling at their tables (taken to be sure everyone is documented), you wind up with hundreds of images that are so very true to the feeling of the night.

In case you missed it, this is a video for your watching pleasure. So please watch it...and be pleased.

For some reason if you give people access to a big bin of fun props, and a camera that takes its own pictures, the crazy comes out. I LOVE IT WHEN THAT HAPPENS! The cherry on top of this whole photo booth situation is that everyone then gets to leave with a delightful film strip to remember what a fun time they had, as opposed to your guests taking home a tiny sack of candied almonds. Yes, they are indeed delicious, but is anyone really going to cherish them for years to come? Will someone hang those nuts on their fridge for everyone to appreciate? No, they're going to drunkenly eat them in the cab back to the hotel and not remember doing it. They'll forever wonder what happened to their tasty yet short-lived wedding favor. Don't do this to your guests, just get a photo booth ... You're welcome.

6. Just because your wedding day ends doesn't mean the photo shoot has to!

My good friend Kelsey was supposed to do Sara's hair and makeup for the wedding, but unfortunately was unable to make it.  We found a replacement and she did an excellent job (obviously, did you see the pictures!?), but we were still sad that Kelsey didn't get to do it because we just love her. I thought to myself, "well, self, why don't we have Kelsey just come and do the hair and make up for a wedding photo shoot!?" I mean, why in the world would I let our stunning wedding garments hide in a closet for the rest of eternity? 

I decided that I wanted to create a more "magical" image in my own crazy compositing sort of way of how it felt last August 16th. So yeah, that happened and it was tons-o-fun.  Kelsey is pretty dang awesome, and crazy talented. She did the hair and makeup for this and this, and once I eventually get around to editing it, you'll see a totally different image we collaborated on while she was here for the wedding shoot!!

Obviously not everyone is a photographer with constant access to a giant studio, but there is no reason you can't pick a day to get all dressed back up and have your picture taken! Perhaps you got married on a rainy day and all your pictures were taken indoors. You had your heart set on some nature-y locations, so why not hire a photographer on a warm and beautiful evening to do some glorious golden-hour portraits of you and your bride (or groom)? 

It was so much fun to put back on my suit, relearn how to tie a stinkin bow tie, pop in my fancy-shmancy cuff links, and strap on my incredibly badass shoes. Then, to see my always lovely wife all glammed up and wearing her wedding dress...well, It didn't suck.  It was hard not to get all warm and fuzzy while we stared into each other's eyes and "danced on the clouds."

7. Marrying a food blogger means you end up with the MOST DELICIOUS WEDDING CAKE EVER!

You know how I mentioned that finding a good photographer was at the top of my list? Well I think the leading factor for Sara's wedding checklist was to obtain an absolutely perfect wedding cake. If you ask me, we did. I'm not even going to go into any detail about how truly-mouthwateringly-good our wedding cake was, because what do you know Sara is SHARING THE RECIPE FOR OUR CAKE ON HER BLOG! Did I mention there will also be a blow-your-mind-beautiful-illustration of her cupcake version of our wedding cake!?! So hop on over there and read more about our glorious wedding from the bride's perspective, see even more pictures, and hear all about our cake.....then........go make our cake.

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