Last week, we shared some of our favorite love stories, and I think we may have to add today's couple to that list! Lindsey and Andrew met in kindergarten, and after 18 years of friendship and dating on and off, Andrew proposed in their hometown. They held a prayerful ceremony under an oak tree, and then celebrated in a reception featuring rustic details lovingly handmade by Lindsey's family, an impressive cupcake display, and even a fun tribute to Lindsey's alma mater, the University of Tennessee.
We're so grateful to Paige Jones for sharing Lindsey and Andrew's wedding with us!
How did y'all meet? Tell us your love story. Most people are shocked when we tell them we met in kindergarten! We had adjoining classrooms, and even at 5 years old, found ourselves in the same group of friends. By sixth grade, we were best friends, bus buddies, and confidants, but we didn't stay just friends for long. In seventh grade, we became "boyfriend and girlfriend," passing daily notes and looked forward to group dates. We continued dating on and off through high school, but eventually broke up for what we thought was "for good." He stayed in Georgia and I headed to the University of Tennessee for college. Before long, I missed my best friend, and we were back together by the middle of freshman year. He proposed on April 6, 2013 in our hometown, 18 years after we first met.
Tell us all about the proposal! My sister and I were supposed to make dinner for my parents, so we walked into Publix, thinking we were getting groceries. When I approached the counter to get fish, I knew something else was going on when the lady handed me a card. It was a clue--the beginning of a scavenger hunt. My sister and I proceeded to go to different places around our hometown, each with another clue. I ended up at a park where Andrew and I had had a picnic the year before. There he was, in the cutest outfit, asking me to be his wife. I was overjoyed, excited, and thankful!
Describe your wedding flowers. When I met with our florist, Brittany Rhodes from Gardenia, I wasn't really sure what to expect. I didn't know much about flowers, so I wasn't sure how I would communicate my vision to her. I described a couple of ideas and colors to her and crossed my fingers. After getting my hair and makeup done, my bridesmaids and I traveled to the venue, and upon arriving, the flowers were the first thing I really noticed. I think I may have squealed a little bit--Brittany had NAILED it. They were clean and fresh, but still colorful. She had filled the bouquets with hydrangeas, succulents, yarrow, dahlias, and all kinds of pure goodness. Seeing those flowers was the moment it hit me, "Oh my gosh, this is my wedding day!"
Our favorite detail of the wedding was: We got married in a huge field with an oak tree, which was exactly what we dreamed of. However, the field was so large that we were worried about the ceremony not being intimate enough. My mom and I came up with a plan for a "shutter wall" and my dad executed it. It was the "door" to the ceremony and I loved it! It was made of old shutters surrounded by flowers, planters, and furniture, and then topped with ladders wrapped in grapevine. It closed out the space wonderfully.
Did you decide to do a "first look"? Why or why not? We decided not to do a first look. We really wanted our first special moment together on our wedding day to be with the people we loved and cared about--the people we had walked through life with. Knowing that I was about to make a sacred covenant, start a new chapter, and go on a new adventure with Andrew, I really wanted that moment to be with my dad to lead me there.
After reviewing traditional vows, we decided we wanted to be the ones who wrote out what we would commit to, and I'm so glad we did. Saying our vows was one of my favorite moments of the day. We didn't read each others' beforehand, so I heard his words and his commitment to me for the very first time as we stood in front of our family and friends. My favorite line he said to me was, "Just as Jesus laid down his life for us, so will I lay down my life in how I love and serve you." I love that our marriage started with the truth of Jesus Christ.
I'm a perfectionist, so getting all the details together, especially since we did a lot of DIY projects, was pretty overwhelming at times. My family was so unbelievable throughout the wedding planning process. My dad and uncle built our shutter wall, the planters, and the centerpieces, my mom made more than 30 tablecloths and runners, and my sister helped with all the tiny details in between. Without them, I definitely couldn't have done it!
Describe your wedding cake or dessert. Ever since I was in middle school, I've loved baking, and anyone who knows me knows that I crave cupcakes weekly. We served cupcakes for dessert, along with three chocolate fountains.
When did y'all get married? October 19, 2013
How many friends, family members, and loved ones attended your wedding? 250
Tell us about finding your wedding dress. I knew I wanted a fitted silhouette and I was pretty sure I wanted lace, but after the fifth and sixth stores, I started to wonder if I would ever find the dress, or if I would be the girl who just settled on something. Thankfully, my mom (who is awesome) encouraged me to keep going and scouted out one more place we could try. Thank goodness she did! The dress was fitted, lace, vintage-inspired, and unique.
What readings, if any, did you have at your ceremony? Our pastor read Psalm 103:1-3 before we opened up the worship music. We loved that he started off that way because Psalm 103 is all about who God is and praising Him, which is what we wanted the foundation of our marriage to stand on. Later, he read 1 Corinthians, where the Bible talks about love which comes from Christ, our perfect example.
Tell us about some of the songs you used throughout your wedding and why you chose them. Choosing the songs was a really important part of the wedding planning process for us. I walked down the aisle to "In Christ Alone." We chose it because we wanted the foundation of our marriage to be on Christ and nothing else. We started off the ceremony with three worship songs that included "10,000 Reasons (Bless the Lord)" by Matt Redman, "Holy Spirit" by Jesus Culture, and "Oceans" by Hillsong. For our reception, our first dance was to "Forever Like That" by Ben Rector. For the father-daughter dance, my dad and I decided to do a little something different. My dad and I are both University of Tennessee alum and pretty hardcore UT fans. We wanted to shake up the traditional father-daughter dance, so we decided to do a little stepping to the infamous UT fight song "Rocky Top." I think only five people knew beforehand. It was such a rush of adrenaline--Dad pulled out his UT hat, we started country stepping, and everyone went crazy.
What was your most memorable moment about your wedding day? Meeting up with Andrew for a picture holding hands around the door was one of my favorite memories. I couldn't see him, but as soon as I grabbed his hand, I felt like a giggly little school girl. Walking down the aisle was also a really special moment--I've known Andrew for so long, and it was amazing to think that this moment was going to change everything. I loved dancing to Rocky Top with my dad too!
What advice do you have for folks currently planning a wedding? Surround yourself with good people--you can't plan a wedding alone. The people around you and the vendors you select are what will make your day smooth, unique, and special.
What's next for you as a couple? What are you most looking forward to about married life? We just moved into a townhouse together. Since we did long distance for four years of college, we are both looking forward to day-to-day life together!
Photographer: Paige Jones / Planner: Molly McKinley / Ceremony and Reception Venue: Smithonia Farms / Florist: Gardenia Floral / Cupcake Baker: Gigi's Cupcakes / Caterer: Cucina Milano / Rentals: Oconee Events and Barron’s Rental Center / DJ: Chaz Ripley of DJ Pro Weddings / Bride’s Gown: Justin Alexander / Invitations: Julia's Poppies Design / Programs: DIY / Bride's Earrings: J.Crew / Hair Sylist: Pamela Nichols of Sorella Hair Studio / Bride’s Shoes: Sam Edelman / Bridesmaids' Dresses: Madewell, Francesca's, Modcloth, Free People, and Lulu's / Men's Jackets and Shirts: J.Crew / Ties: Bows 'N Ties / Men's Shoes: Banana Republic / Groomsmen's Pants: American Eagle / Gray Ties: Nordstrom / Colored Ties: Month of Mae