venue: Avant Garden Houston
wedding dress: Unbridaled Houston
Hair/Makeup: Adorne Artistry
Accessories + Bridesmaid Dresses: BHLDN
Florals: Jenna Lynn Events
Groom’s Suit: Imparli Houston
Taylor and Matt were a complete dream to work with. We spent a lot of time together during the planning process and honestly, I’m so sad it is all over now. From our engagement session in Italy, to our dreamy bridal session and last but not least, the most beautiful, greenery filled wedding, these two have been amazing. I asked Taylor and Matt some questions about their relationship + wedding planning.
Q: Out of the billions of people in the world, how did you know Matt was who you wanted to spend the rest of your life with?
A: It clicked pretty instantly from the first night we actually hung out with each other. I always knew the person I spent my life with would be *him*. I grew up in a huge hockey family. I started taking ice hockey lessons when I was two, and I was on my first team when I was four. My mom was actually the coach of first Mighty Mights hockey team. When I was in 5th grade, my older brothers left Texas to play Junior Hockey in Louisiana. During their first home game in Lafayette, one of the parents put together a tailgate, and YALL, in this moment my life was forever changed. I had my first dose of authentic cajun gumbo. At ten years old I stood before all my friends and family and declared, “the person I marry has to be a hockey player, a Red Wings fan, and they have to make me gumbo like this, whenever I want it!” Even at ten I realized how oddly specific of a demand this would be in the quest for the perfect life partner. Flash forward 7 years later and I’ve found myself working side by side at an Ice Rink with an awkward hockey player co-worker named Matt. We were both too awkward and shy around each other ever even make small talk. Near the end of my time working there, a co-worker invited me over to hang with him and Matt. We stayed up til 6am, just the two of us on Travis’ balcony. In only 9 hours I knew this person better than anyone I had in my life. We talked about everything. I told him about the revelation I had when Was little about the gumbo. He promised he made damn good gumbo. We spent that entire summer with each other, and a few months later I put this gumbo to the test- it was game over. 10 year old me had her heart’s lofty little desires.
Q: Out of the billions of people in the world, how did you know Taylor was who you wanted to spend the rest of your life with?
A: I knew I wanted to spend the rest of my life with Taylor almost immediately after we started dating. I had never shared such a unique connection with another person before. After moving constantly for hockey I finally felt at home when I was with her.
Q: What was your favorite memory from your wedding?
Answer from Taylor: My favorite memory was our first look. I replay the look on his face when he first ruined around to see me all the time. He just instantly cried, reached for me and said, “Oh. My. God. You are so beautiful.” My heart turned into a freakin’ puddle. I was having such bad anxiety before this moment. Nothing has ever calmed my nerves and fears like this did. It confirmed what I already knew – everything will be alright because we have each other. Ugh, I love him so much. I’m also so in love with all the little details we had. Music is pretty important to me, and I spent most of the planning process picking the perfect songs. One of my all time favorite bands is The Get Up Kids. In middle school I read an interview where Mark Hoppus from Blink 182 talks about his wedding day and how his wife and him danced to “I’ll Catch You” by TGK. At 12 I was hit with inspiration for that to be the song that my dad would walk me down the aisle to. The wedding party walked down to Luna by The Smashing Pumpkins. Hockey plays a pretty important role in our lives and the groomsmen surprised us with a little hockey stick arch during our wedding exit. I lit up when I realized it.
Answer from Matt: It was seeing Taylor for the first time that day. I was a nervous mess up until that point and as soon as I saw her all the nerves disappeared and everything was alright again. Close second was looking out after the ceremony and seeing all the people from the different parts of my life all in the same place for the first time.
Q: Any tips for people planning their wedding?
Answer from Taylor: You do not need an opinion from everyone! Take them with a grain of salt. Do not warp your mind over what your sister, bridesmaid, or co-worker says about YOUR wedding. I work in bridal, and it always breaks my heart when I see brides get crushed by the opinions of family and friends. It’s you and your partners day. Make it as *you* as possible. Invest in vendors that you are compatible with- it’ll make the planning process more fun and less stressful. Seriously, if you can eliminate any stress, do it! Nadine was the first vendor I booked after my venue, and I think the greater thing I did was find other vendors that she had worked with before/genuinely enjoyed working with. Everyone I had on my team was a great match and I love them forever so much. Most importantly, invest in your mental health as much as possible. Planning a wedding while having to deal with your personal life, work, and todays world climate can pose a huge blow to your psyche. You guys gotta remember to take care of you. Don’t forget to express your gratitude often. My mom, maid of honor, and Nadine, are the reasons why my wedding day was so magical, and I’m forever grateful for them.
Answer from Matt: Stop for a second and find a moment to take everything in. with a million things happening around you and the swarms of people you’ll have to talk to, the day will feel like it was gone in an instant. Also, when given the opportunity to eat, do it!
Unlike my other blog posts, I decided to let Celenia narrate their intimate elopement in Port Angeles at Hurricane Ridge in Olympic National Park. They did everything in secret and decided to wait to announce everything. They kept everything extremely intimate and this honestly must of been one of the hardest secrets they had to keep because it was so hard for me not to share till they were ready. 🙂 I of course am going to begin with some questions for them and then let Celenia take over and tell their story.
Q: Celenia, out of the billions of people in the world how did you know Cameron was who you wanted to spend the rest of your life with?
A: It might sound cliche, but when you know, YOU KNOW. I was never the one to believe in soul mates but we clicked in a way I’ve never clicked with someone before, almost instantly. He makes me smile and makes me a better person!
Q: Cameron, out of the billions of people in the world how did you know Celenia was who you wanted to spend the rest of your life with?
A: I knew Celenia was the one when I realized how ridiculously fast she became more important to me than myself. It only took a few months to come to the conclusion that there is almost nothing I wouldn’t sacrifice to make her happy.
Q: What was yalls favorite memory from your wedding?
A: Cameron: “The awkward first dance and her dad’s unbelievably loud sneeze mid ceremony.
Celenia: “My favorite part of the wedding was exchanging our vows. It was just so personal and something I get to cherish forever.”
Q: Any tips for people planning their wedding?
A: Cameron: “Enjoy every moment leading up to the day, don’t let small details stress you out and just soak in all the blessings.”
Celenia: “My only tip is do what YOU want to do! Nothing is more stressful than people telling you how to plan YALLS day. I stopped listening to what people wanted me to do and because of that, I had the wedding of my dreams!”
Now, Celenia will be taking over and talking about their beautiful day.
We knew from the get go that we didn’t want a wedding. We didn’t want the attention, we wanted intimacy and romance and wanted to solely focus on each other and our future. We are also adventurous so secretly getting married in the PNW with only our closest family made complete sense to us.
The day started off with hair and makeup by Elizabeth White Artistry who is one of the nicest human beings I have ever met. Her conversations are so real, it almost didn’t feel like she was working but more of a friend, which I appreciated a lot.
When that was finished, we went on and opened gifts Cameron and I had exchanged the day before. we both wrote personal letters that emphasized our excitement for the big day. Cameron isn’t a very lovey-dovey person, so this was a fun moment for me.
Traveling up Hurricane Ridge was mesmerizing. It was about 45 minutes up the mountains outside of Port Angeles.
Our first look!! Ah.. this was my favorite part of the day. I had been thinking about this moment since the day he proposed. I had no idea how I would feel when I first saw him. Would I cry? Make Uncomfortable Jokes? (it’s a bad habit when I’m nervous, sorry.) but when I saw him and he turned around.. I didn’t do either of those things. I just smiled, and I may have laughed a little but I was nervous, ok?? and it was probably the biggest smile I’ve ever had.
We then exchanged our own personal vows. Again, another favorite moment. We decided to do this because of how romantic and intimate it was and it was fun! I twas everything we wanted this day to be. Since being married, we’ve tried to live up to the promises we made to each other. Even the one where Cameron promised to continue making late night runs to get me my favorite ice cream.. he completely regrets that promise, but it’s too late, the deal is sealed. 😉
The ceremony was beautiful. This is the exact moment that every girl spends her whole life thinking about and through out the whole planning process, I did consider having a big, fancy wedding, but at that exact moment, standing in front of Cameron, I realized we made the right choice doing it this way. None of the other stuff mattered, we were both just so happy that the day had finally come and we got to commit ourselves to each other.
After the ceremony, that time consisted of a lot of hugs and many tears from our moms.
Everyone started slowly leaving and Cameron and I had another chance to soak in the moment together over our first dance.
We so awkwardly danced to, Cant Help but Fall in Love by Elvis Presley and it was again, just such a magical moment.
Once we finished our first dance, we took a little to another part of Hurricane Ridge. On our way up, our photographer Nadine, had mentioned seeing deer so we went to go find them.
And of course while watching the sunset at the top of a mountain, a family of deers popped behind us. such a Disney Princess moment and I was soaking it all up. Seriously, what were the odds?
Our day ended with us getting pizza at a small local pizza shower where we also got to share a slice of oreo pie 😉
We decide to wait because we knew we would get some negative feedback and we didn’t want to start off what is supposed to be the best time of our lives, that way. We knew it was going to take awhile to get our pictures back, so we decided to wait until then which gave us time to settle in our new house and enjoy our time as newly weds, privately. All in all, this day exceeded every expectation that my 7 year old self had. It was the BEST day ever, thus far. I’m so blessed to get to have Cameron by my sided to conquer the trials life brings us.
I have known Michelle for almost 8 years now. From our xbox days where we would religiously play halo3 to going to local shows. We have been through it all. One of my best friends. It’s so awesome seeing her now, with her beautiful fiancee Katie, all grown up and just plain happy and in love. She was visiting Houston, Texas and wanted to get engagement photos done and I was SO excited to be apart of such a memorable time in her life. Katie is such a rock and someone so admirable. These two met when Michelle went to the army and really grew their relationship when they were stationed in Africa. What a fricken story! Too bad I suck at story telling because it sounded way more cool and romantic when they told me. 🙂
when I told them to slow dance haha