- 3 years ago
- Wedding: August 2013
You two are a great looking couple! Gorgeous pics by the water! Congrats! I loveeee the pic of the bridal party jumping and i dont care if I see it on Pinterest. I always love it!
HOW WE MET:
I met Daniel when I came to the Cayman Islands for a girls vacation in 2008. He was working as a submarine pilot for Atlantis Submarines. We met at a BBQ at Dan’s house my first night there and I haven’t stopped thinking about him every day since then. I was living in Toronto at the time and other people doubted a long distance relationship would work, but we didn’t have any problems and I certainly didn’t mind leaving Toronto in the winter to visit my favorite person on a tropical island every 6 weeks or so! We dated long distance for a year and a half before moving to Vancouver together in 2010. The vacation romance persisted in our everyday lives as we got used to being able to see each other every day instead of every few months. After 5 years with the love of my life, I still get butterflies on a regular basis. He is so patient, romantic and kind to me, his family is wonderful, and I love spending time with him whether it’s at home, out with friends, or travelling together.
Dan gave me a huge and wonderful surprise when he popped the question while snowboarding on Whistler together under the Jersey Cream Chair on a gorgeous bluebird day last spring. We enjoyed the rest of the day on Cloud 9 in Seventh Heaven (literally!)J
Pictou Lodge in Nova Scotia was a natural choice for us to have our wedding. I grew up in Pictou County and am a beach girl at heart, so I have always imagined getting married in a beautiful outdoor venue by the beach. Dan had been to the Lodge before for their famous Sunday brunch while visiting my family on a summer vacation, and he is actually the one who first mentioned having the wedding here. It was perfect –at least fifty percent of the guests would be coming from out-of-town, whether it was Vancouver or Halifax, and Pictou Lodge could accommodate them all in fantastic cabins. They wouldn’t even have to leave the Lodge all weekend if they didn’t want to, with lots of activities nearby and a restaurant on site. We could have both our ceremony and reception there, and no one would have to think about driving home. With a gorgeous outdoor venue by the beach, fantastic food and lots of room for a crazy party, we couldn’t go wrong choosing this venue. Amanda Smith, the wedding coordinator at the Lodge, was easy to work with and helped make our dream day come true, even with some special requests like fireworks!
Our theme was an elegant but casual by-the-sea Nova Scotia bash. We had lots of Maritime touches, like a fiddle player for the ceremony, a lobster trap for gift cards, sand dollar chocolates decorated with the Nova Scotia tartan for favors, and seashells in the centerpieces. Our cake was a work of art exploding with edible flowers, seashells and sand. We even had my 2 nieces do a traditional Irish dance in between cocktail hour and dinner. Pictou Lodge has such a rustic and natural charm on its own, we didn’t need much to dress it up besides lots of romantic candlelight from lace wrapped mason jars and twinkle lights on the ceiling.
My favorite flower is the tiger lily, which my parents had hundreds of around their farmhouse growing up, so the colors we chose were based on this flower, along with other sunset colors – bright orange-coral, with touches of gold and champagne. My earrings, shoes, and sash were all gold/champagne and my bouquet was filled with tiger lily’s and huge peachy roses, accented with orange hypercicum berry, and the guys had the berries as their boutineer. We had the bridal party wear gray as a neutral in order to make the other colors pop, and dressed up the look with gold accessories.
Our wedding day was all worth it for the both of us. We worried that planning a wedding on the East Coast from the West Coast might be difficult, but our family and friends were so amazing. I leaned on my sister and maid of honor Cheryl for advice almost every day, and she made the most heartfelt yet funny speech I have ever heard the night of the wedding. My mom collected mason jars for over a year, and her friends all pitched in to help her get the hundreds we needed in order to line the 2 long tables in the Lodge with mason jar centerpieces. We made the flower girl basket together from seashells she also collected all year, and used them in the centerpieces too. My mother-in-law, Sue, made the flower girl dress for Hayley from scratch. We went and picked out the fabric together one day, I got my bridal store to give me an extra champagne sash which matched mine, and then Sue made the whole dress herself, along with a matching miniature version for Hayley’s doll LuLu! She also picked and dried over 2 lbs of lavender from her vacation home on Pender Island for us to have for the post-ceremony “rice toss”. A family friend actually made our tree bark cake stand from an old tree on our farm that had fallen down. In my bouquet was a picture of my cousin Graeme, who I was very close to but who had passed away, so it was nice to have of reminder of him with me on the big day.
Obviously dancing with my father was a very special moment for me, and when others joined us on the dance floor for the last part of our dance, I knew the formal part was over and actually finally felt married at that point! I thought the Irish dance that my 2 nieces, Kelsey and Jenna, performed was amazingly talented for such young girls and lent a nice Maritime feel to the wedding. I rented a popcorn machine as a surprise for Dan, who is an absolute fiend for popcorn, and the guests liked having something extra to snack on after dinner, before the special Pictou County Pizza was delivered at midnight with Nova Scotia donair sauce of courseJ
The whole week was actually so fun, a lot of Vancouver people came to check out Halifax with my local friends and family before the wedding. We went surfing in Lawrencetown, drank at the local pubs, did the Alexander Keith’s brewery tour, and attended a local music festival on Friday night. The day before the wedding, we had a private wine tasting with a rep from a Nova Scotia winery in my cabin at Pictou Lodge while Dan took some family and friends golfing at a local course. The morning of the wedding one of my bridesmaids and I had a private yoga session on the beach which was such a peaceful experience for me to reflect before the whole day got started. My photographer Steph was wonderful and got a lot of amazing shots to help remember the day – our first look on a dock in Pictou was so special with the Ship Hector and Nova Scotia flag in the background, and we had an Alexander Keith’s at a lobster resturant with the bridal party right before the ceremony to celebrate. She took some amazing beach shots on the rocks with the waves crashing on them that I will treasure.
Overall, it was so lovely to have the 2 coasts come together to celebrate in my hometown, and so nice to hear Dan’s family and friends from Vancouver and Ontario say how beautiful Nova Scotia was and how much fun they had. The most exciting part of the day was walking up the aisle and feeling all the love from the crowd, then Dan staring so deeply into my eyes during the entire ceremony before the perfect kiss! The after-party in Cabin 6 with my Dad playing the guitar was a party I will not soon forget eitherJ
Photography: Steph MacKinnon at Stephinc.com
Wedding Decorating: Susan Colbourne
Venue: Pictou Lodge
Venue Coordinator: Amanda Smith
Floral Design: McKeans Flowers
Gown: Romona Keveza from Blush Bridal and Special Occasions
Shoes: Jimmy Choo
Rings: Dustin Koch of DuKo designs
Bridesmaid Dresses: Jim Hjelm from Blush Bridal & Special Occasions
Hair and Makeup: Lauren Arbuckle
Cake: Bernice Law at My Secret Baker.Net
Entertainment: Fleur Mainville (live fiddle music for ceremony), Clam Chowder (live band for reception dance)
Your wedding day Looks and Sounds Perfect! Congratulations. Thanks for sharing.
Wow, you looked gorgeous and the pics are great!!!
You are absolutely gorgeous and your groom looked so handsome!!
Congrats to a fellow Canadian bee 🙂
Butt squeeze! Lovely pics.
Your photographer had a lot of great movement in his shots, love!!!
gorgeous! i love the pics by the water. and the weather seems perfect!
holy gorgeous photos! stunning!