Melissa stood in front of the mirror, bracing herself on the vanity, glancing every so often at her reflection and then looking back down, taking a breath or two in between.
“Are you gonna be ok?” I asked her.
“I’ll be fine,” Melissa said. “Where’s Matt? Downstairs?”
She left the bridal ready room (which, we’re sure, was furnished by Laura Ashley) while Chrissy (her sister), set up the make-up by the mirror, Eryc (Melissa’s man of honor) ran around fine tuning all the details of the day, and I tried to tidy up, taking pictures when I could, hoping that sometime soon, the rain would stop. After a few moments, Melissa came back into the room, but before she closed the door, Matt, standing by the doorway, gave her a quick reassuring kiss and then was off.
Soon we were back in front of that vanity, re-inforcing Mel’s bun with a dozen or so more bobby pins, spraying her ‘do as Eryc protected her face with his hands. Chrissy’s turn with her make-up took just a few more minutes and the next thing left to do was put on her dress…but not before Mel stole a few moments to transcribe her vows from her Palm Pre to a piece of paper that she could carry down the aisle.
I don’t know how I got the privilege to help Mel put on her gown, but after I teased her for stepping into her dress instead of having the dress placed over her head like it’s usually done, she laughed, I zipped and Chrissy, Eryc and her older sister, Sandy, and I just kind of stood there and looked at her for a few seconds. Melissa looked so beautiful!
Yes, the day was rainy and the ceremony had to be done inside at the chapel instead of outside where they had planned. Yes, the bride and the groom saw each other before the ceremony. In the end, they were but minute circumstances against that which was most important – Melissa and Matthew, married.
Nazareth Hall is about a 30-minute drive from where Melissa grew up in Maumee, OH. The surrounding area, grassy and tree-filled, remind me of Dead Poets’ Society. As a Southern Californian, there was no mistaking I was far from home here in the Midwest. It’s nice to be away from home sometimes though, and this was no exception.
Fresh flowers, white furniture, floral upholstery – is this Laura Ashley or what?
Melissa is one of the most lovable people I know. Nerves or not, she was all smiles.
Compliments of the Nazareth Hall staff…
One of the most unique wedding band pairings I’ve ever seen. Matt’s ring is made of this Damascus stainless steel used to make swords!
Mel’s shoes were cute Badgley Mischkas. I love when brides wear color on their feet. By the end of the night, however, Melissa said her feet were killing her. It’s okay, dear cousin, because they looked great! =)
Mel’s dress wasn’t covered with a lot of frills, and it didn’t need it. I love that criss-cross band around the waist and that lace bolero? Chrissy made that!
Sandy’s daughter, my niece Mia’s hand…All together now…aaaaaww….
Setting up family pictures is always such a harrowing feat, but the photographers got everyone to smile at the same time. The challenge is having everyone’s eyes opened. I hope they got a few those.
Welcome to our family, Matt. I see you’re just as hammy in front of the camera as the rest of us =)
One of my favorite parts of attending this wedding was getting to see family that I don’t get to see as often as I’d like. Mel’s parents (of course)…
Mel’s man of honor was their childhood friend, Eryc, who isn’t related to us but might as well be. Even though this was only the second time I’d seen him, it was like we’d hung out all these years. Never a dull moment with this guy!
Ate Sandy and Chrissy – where would Mel be without her big sisters?
My cousin Chrissy is such a fun person to be around. She’s only a year older than I am, but I really look up to her (if she’s reading this, she’ll either be really flattered or start rolling her eyes. haha!). Actually, she is who my mom (and even Chrissy herself) thinks my sister is going to be exactly like when she gets older and I don’t disagree. Chrissy and her boyfriend, Tom, are such a great pair. I’m glad, after all these years, we finally met him.
I flew to Ohio with my sister and cousins. Aimee’s wedding is next year (can’t wait!) and PJ – boy did this guy used to pester me when he was little!
Sandy and her husband, Butch, have 5 great kids, my nieces and nephews – Bianca, Roman, Sabrina, Gabriel and Mia. I wish I could’ve spent more time with all of them, but I’m hoping a visit to Loveland, OH won’t be too far off (Thanks for the invite, Ate Sandy!).
Chrissy was the graphic mastermind behind all the paper products for this wedding – save-the-dates, invitations, programs, placecards, menu cards, table numbers. So talented and so creative!
Can’t forget the personalized napkins…
Mel’s parents, my uncle and aunt aren’t the most talkative in a crowd but they are two of the nicest people and boy can they dance!
Melissa and Matthew Birdsall!!!
A toast! My little sister is still about 10 months from 21, but under the supervision of responsible cousins, she was allowed a drink or two (don’t pop a vein, Mom and Dad, Tin was totally fine).
Uncle Pete, Auntie Tessie, Aunt Diane and Uncle Tito – attendees from Lansing, MI. We really do need to pay a visit to that side of the country soon, but I’m so happy we got to see them here.
First dance as husband and wife…
Mel did a great job keeping up with her dad. =) What a happy dance that was…
Groom-flower girls dance…haha!
CONGRATULATIONS, MELISSA AND MATT!!! That was a beautiful wedding and I’m glad so many of us got to celebrate with you two! Wishing you a happy marriage!