Romantic Catholic Wedding || Emily+Raymond
“Emily and I first met a mutual friend of ours’ party a year before we actually started to get to know each other. Long story short, by the end of the night, I had a bit of a crush on her, and, thanks to the best joke in my repertoire (which is an hour long) and me answering too many riddles, Emily told our friend (who was trying to play matchmaker with us) that she thought I was annoying and never wanted to see me again. Well, fast forward one year, and I’m performing in a play at our local university. Emily was in the audience one show, and she says that I walked onstage initially and she thought, “Wow, he’s pretty cute!” Since it had been a year since we had last seen each other, she didn’t immediately recognize me, but as the play went on, the dots started to connect until she realized, “IT’S THE ANNOYING GUY!”
Fast forward a couple more months, and this time Emily is in a play, and I am intended to be in the audience. A little bit before the show opened, however, a friend of mine who was working on the show asked if I might be able to help work backstage for the show. I had nothing else going on, and so I accepted. This would turn out to be the second best decision of my life. Since I was now a part of the show as well, Emily and I had the opportunity to get to know each other, and so we would talk in passing and among other friends. At the end of a rehearsal one day, a friend of mine (the same friend that asked me to help backstage) came up to me and said, “Raymond, I don’t know what you want to do with this information, but I thought I’d let you know that Emily likes you and thinks you’re cute.”
Naturally, since I’m awkward and don’t like to assume other people’s emotions, I did nothing with that information. A couple of days passed, Emily and I kept up our usual relationship, and Thanksgiving break came around. A day or so into the break, I receive a Facebook message from Emily saying, “Hey! I didn’t get a chance to say this to you before, but I hope you have a Happy Thanksgiving!” I responded with a good ol’, “Thanks! I hope you have a Happy Thanksgiving, too”, and I thought that was going to be the end of the conversation. I was pleasantly wrong. Emily and I continued to message each other throughout the entirety of the break, and it was during this time that we set up our first “date”.
While messaging, we decided to meet up at a Panera and grab some lunch together. I, again being awkward and not wanting to assume anything, thought we were going as friends. Emily, being the reasonable one, did not think this way, and so it came as a bit of a surprise when I kinda only paid for myself…but because she’s so kind and perfect she stayed for the “date” either way, and we had a wonderful time. During this time, the show had opened, and Emily had the unfortunate task of staying behind at the school after every show to wash all of the costumes. This involved staying essentially alone at the theater for hours into the night, and so I, wanting to keep her company, offered to stay with her and help her with the laundry each night. This is when our relationship really grew. We would spend the time while the laundry was in the wash just hanging out and talking. We shared stories, jokes (Emily wouldn’t let me tell my hour long joke, though…she still doesn’t), life plans, all that stuff, and I loved it. I loved being in her company.
A little time later, Emily mentioned to me her love of picnics, and I told her that I had never been on one before. She proceeded to tell me how much fun they are, and how she hasn’t been on one herself for years, and how she just didn’t have anyone to go with, and how I would love it if I went on one, and I (remember – awkward and non-presumptuous) replied with “I’m sure I would enjoy it, but I don’t know who I would go with” to which Emily replied, “Seriously? Me, Raymond. Take me.” And so we went on the picnic (which was our first “real” date), and we had so much fun together that we decided to meet up another time, and another time, and another time, and so on and so forth.
A few years later, I was working in upstate New York for a summer and Emily had the idea to meet me in New York City when I was done with my job! We wound up staying there for about a week, and we saw Broadway shows, walked around Times Square, ate at the same sushi restaurant for three nights, and so much more, but I had to add one more thing to the list.
While in New York, Emily had mentioned to me that there was a pond in Central Park where you could rent rowboats and paddle around. She told me just how much she loved having done just that the last time she had come to New York, and how she wanted to do it while we were there. Naturally, that gave me an idea. I just so happened to have a ring for a proposal, and I just so happened to be with the woman I wanted to propose to, and we just so happened to be in a prime location for a proposal. So we rented a rowboat and started paddling.
The day before, we had walked by the pond, and I took that opportunity to scout out a good, mostly secluded spot that I could paddle to and pop the question. I had found a good spot, and so I headed straight there once we were on the water. After making sure no one was too close (and building up the courage to ask), I took the ring box out of my pocket, got down on one knee (which, on a small rowboat in the middle of the water, was not the easiest thing to do), and I said, “Emily-”, and I opened the ring box.
And as I did, the ring flew out of the box. In a rowboat. In the middle of a murky pond.
THANKFULLY, the ring flew straight forward out of the box and into Emily’s lap. So I quickly grabbed the ring, placed it back into the box, closed the box, and started again, “Emily-”. And this time, when I opened the box, I noticed that the ring was a little crooked, and so I quickly fixed the ring, closed the box, and started again, “Emily,” (this time the ring was good) “will you make me the happiest man alive and do me the honor of marrying me?”
She said yes! And we spent the rest of our trip hand in hand, love to love.
Fast forward one more time to this past May when we had our wedding! Let me tell you, this wedding exceeded both me and Emily’s expectations (in part due to our incredible photographer!). The ceremony went wonderfully, the reception was incredibly fun, and Emily and I were finally married (which was the best part)! Nothing in this world has made me happier, more full of life and love, than being with my beautiful, smart, funny, perfect wife, and there’s nothing I look forward to more than spending every single day of our future together.”
We met Emily+Raymond, a totally adorable and animated couple so in love with each other, a year and a half before their Big Day. After a few stipulations, the couple chose to tie the knot at their family church St. Sylvester Catholic Church and their pastor Alvaro Gonzalez performed a beautiful ceremony while letting us to capture the union from different angles. Three triangular windows reaching high ceilings of the ceremonial area beautifully reflected off of glossy floors allowing us to create unique symmetrical compositions. They also served as a great backdrop for our formal sessions. After all the formals were done, we headed to downtown to continue the celebration at Skopelos. Before the grand entrance, we took a little walk around the area to capture the newlyweds and their first sunset as a married couple. When we got to the Skopelos, guests were waiting for us with handfuls of confetti. And the party began, but Raymond had no idea that Emily had one last surprise for her husband. The couple’s first dance song ‘At Last’ by Etta James was sung by the bride herself. That moment when Raymond realized that it was actually his wife singing it to him was priceless and what a way to make it so memorable and special!
So many special moments on this day, happy tears, hugs, laughs and sing-alongs, faintings, dancings like no one is watching, dad’s heartfelt toast, the couple’s personal vows to each other later sealed in an envelope to open many years down the road – what a perfect day to Emily+Raymond’s start of Forever Together! Congratulations to Mr. & Mrs. Vervoort! May your lives together be always filled with happiness, love, and unforgettable epic memories!
Reception Venue: Skopelos at New World
Catering: Skopelos at New World
Wedding Dress: Simply Elegant Couture Bridal and Prom
Groomswear: Randall’s Formal Wear
Bridal HMUA: Ulta, Kelly Patterson, Mary Kathrine Beasley, Reed Sawyer
Wedding Officiant: Alvaro Gonzalez
Wedding Flowers: Just Judy’s Flowers
Wedding DJ and uplighting: Powell Entertainment
Wedding Rental: Wedding Walls
Day of Coordinator: Eileen Duffy
Wedding Photography: Lazzat Photography, LLC