Brent and Crystal. Crystal and Brent. One of my favorite couples ever. From our first consultation I knew that I had to be a part of their day. They exude togetherness and an ease with one another that tells everyone around them that they are a couple. A relationship that is tempered and perfected with glowing affection, wonderful children, and life experiences that only come when you overcome previous difficulties and realize that all of these things have brought you to this person- the one you were meant to spend the rest of your life with. This is what you find when talking with and watching the two of them together.
They selected the Redhawk Resort for their ceremony and reception venue. They made a great choice. Chardonnay and her crew were exceptional all afternoon and evening. She unobtrusively hovered in the background throughout the event, taking care of small issues and making sure things ran smoothly. She was great to work with from the DJ perspective as well. She brought the lights up and down various times for the optimum photo opportunities balanced with dancing atmosphere. She checked on the guests continually, and the DJ as well. I felt warmly welcomed and well taken care of, so I can imagine what the guests thought :)
It was a spectacular day for the first of April, and the ceremony was framed by the wetlands and golf course. The entire wedding party came in to "1000 Years" by Cristina Perry: five bridesmaids, five groomsmen and Cassidy, Emily, Jake & Cayden (B&C's children) followed by Crystal. I was so proud of the children especially- they took their duties very seriously and were just a fun and well-behaved quartet the entire day and evening. Blake was a bit nervous officiating the ceremony but he had some great lines and was genuine and funny. I was really impressed with Emily (or was it Cassidy?) who had a reading in the midst of the ceremony and was on point with her delivery.
When Blake had pronounced them married, they left to a George Harrison song, "What is Life" which I thought was a cool and fitting song for the moment. I love that album and now when I hear that song I'll think of them. That's the magic of a great song paired with a great moment :)
Cocktails and pictures then commenced. They had a new (to me) photo booth company, The Traveling Photo Booth up and running when the guests arrived inside. Jesse and his helper were very friendly and everyone liked the booth's features. I saw people there multiple times, which always means that it is a fun booth and vibe.
Chris Brown's "Forever" serenaded the bridal party in for the Grand Entrance and shortly thereafter a buffet dinner was served. I got several requests from Crystal and the head table for songs during dinner and everyone was just in such a happy and fun mood. Not hard to imagine though. If you are friends or family with those two, chances are you are pretty cool and fun. Redhawk put out a fine buffet with chicken and beef but what I liked the most was this huge mound of fresh vegetables that were sautéed/steamed. I'm a sucker for fresh and well prepared veggies! As I mentioned, great service from Chardonnay and her crew and before everyone had even been through the line, champagne was poured and served for the toasts.
Lonnie was my favorite person in attendance besides Crystal & Brent. He was their Best Man and he was just a great guy all during the afternoon and evening. Fine choice for Best Man! He started the speeches off and gave a great, heartfelt toast. Crystal's sister and Maid of Honor Deanna followed him with an emotional speech that epitomized sisterhood and their unbreakable bond. What was that? A bit of a tear? Maybe... Then the gentleman that introduced the couple spoke and finally Crystal and Brent. Brent had an idea to start up the "hurry up" music like at the Oscars in the midst of his speech, so I did and everyone enjoyed the moment.
The cake cutting was next. They had placed glass jars near the entrance of the ballroom- one for Brent and one for Crystal. The guests could then vote via a dollar or two on whom would be smashed by the other. Brent won. Or lost, depending on your viewpoint lol. Crystal smashed him in the face! Not too badly, but I loved this and their other ideas throughout the evening. Fun ideas from fun people.
The cake was delicious! Delicious Designs, that is. Actually Leigh Anne makes cakes that live up to her company's name. They taste different than other cakes. The fresh ingredients and flavors really come through. Brent and Crystal opted for a chocolate raspberry top and a champagne strawberry bottom. The latter is my favorite of Leigh Anne's but both were wonderful. The true test of a cake is when it is portioned correctly, are there lots of leftover slices? The answer was no. I saw people come back again for a taste of the other or just another piece no matter which flavor. The small box that included the leftovers at the end was the size of a pie box, and it included their cake top. Delicious is right...
When Brent had cleaned up frosting from his visage, I introduced them for their First Dance. They chose "Bless the Broken Road" by Rascal Flatts, which I thought signified their lives apart and now together perfectly. They "Danced on a Cloud" which means that I put about 15 pounds of dry ice into a special Nimbus machine and out came clouds of water vapor to punctuate the dance. The kids especially loved the effect, chasing stray wisps around the edge of the dance floor. It was a magical moment and always a favorite time in a reception for me. The bride and groom have been doing so many things all day, and while they are together during the ceremony, the First Dance is a moment almost frozen in time. It allows them to almost be alone together in the midst of all of these happy onlookers. They can talk and laugh, sing to one another- just enjoy each other in a pure moment. Time seems to stand still, then before you know it, the song is over and everyone is cheering. I love weddings (if you can't tell lol)!
The rest of the evening was filled with dancing with a small break for tossing the bouquet and garter. Crystal chose "Girls Just Wanna Have Fun" for her toss and Brent "I Want to Sex You Up" for his, which got lots of cheers and applause when he started singing and dancing. Super fun! I took many requests and had a happy bunch of dancers and we ended the night with another Brent & Crystal favorite, MJ's "Will You Be There". It was a perfect ending to a fantastic afternoon and evening.
Thanks to Chardonnay & staff at Redhawk, Jesse at The Traveling Photo Booth, and Leigh Anne from Delicious Designs- you all rock! But thanks the most to Crystal and Brent for inviting me in to their special day and amongst their fantastic friends and family. I really am honored to do what I do, especially for couples like you two. Best of everything, always!