We're Married!

Our wedding day.
Ohhh, take me back. I’m still on cloud 9... And I don't know when I'm coming back down. I know a lot of you have been asking and we are SO excited to finally be able to relive these moments and share our day with you! A handful of these photos, I snapped with my phone but most of the others are from our photographer. We have a ton more photos, but I tried to choose the ones that helped tell the story of our day for you the best. It was exactly what we had imagined. Thank you to you all who were a part of our day or helped to make things possible for us. And a special thank you to those who have supported us since the very beginning, it means the world to us.

We had many long talks about the difference in budget and everything we would get out of having the wedding we had vs. a wedding here back at home inviting a lot of people to help celebrate our day. The choice for us was easy and we wouldn’t have chose to have it any other way.

Friday, September 22, 2017
I know a small, intimate wedding definitely isn’t for everyone or even the location of having it at a lake house out of town with just a handful of people. But both of us have been married before and I’m telling you, it was exactly the way we wanted it. We only wanted our immediate family there and the only focus to be on us and our children, combining both of our families together as one. All we wanted and what our kids deserved to have was giving and receiving our full attention to each other that weekend. This was way more important to us than any fancy, sit down dinner with 150+ guests to take away from the simplicity of what this day meant to us. The day of September 22 marked the day we met and our four year anniversary together, so this was extra special for us. We wanted to make it a family getaway weekend to relax and just enjoy quality time together while still enjoying the details of a wedding day while we were there.

So, here is the lake house and the view. We had our own yard, our own dock and our own secluded space that made it feel like we were in the middle of nowhere, which is exactly what we wanted. It's right there on the resort with hotel rooms in walking distance where people stayed for the wedding night and then another night with us at the lake house to be able to spend the rest of the weekend. It was perfect, you guys. Perfect. We already can't wait to go back.

We stayed at Lake Lawn Resort in Delavan, Wisconsin. Randy’s boss at the time, owns the resort and this is where we went for their Holiday parties. We also got engaged at the resort, so that left just an extra little memory for us and a special reason for having it here. {Flashback}

We arrived Thursday evening around 5:30pm. It was the perfect time to unload the cars and walk around out in the yard to see the lighting and details, as our wedding would be the same time the next evening. The whole yard was lit with string lights, which was good because I brought mine from home to do it and now we didn't have to (bonus!), and there were perfect little spots that stood out in my mind for other things we wanted to have. We got to hug our family as they showed up, run around with the kids and listen to them laugh and heard the background noise of the waves coming in and hitting the dock and the side of our yard. I remember just standing there taking deep breaths with no worry in the world, those very first moments of enjoying a vacation. We got to breathe in the first sunset of the weekend together and soak in those first memories here that officially meant becoming our forever.

There are six of us now. S I X. I mean, there have always been six of us, but this photo just symbolizes so much with all of us just standing in a line... My dream of having this many children all came true in a different way and I am just feeling forever grateful.

The sunsets and sunrises were enough within itself to just bottle up along with the deep breaths of relaxation to take home with us. The pictures don't do it justice, but I had to snap it anyways just to remember the moment.

This sunrise was the morning of the wedding. Randy and I were the only ones who got to see it and it was a bittersweet moment between the two of us, especially being on our wedding day. There was a bit of tension the day before with just unpacking all the wedding decor and the rush of family coming, I feel that we needed this moment as a reminder that '...This is why we're here. Right here.'

Two of the kids woke up way too early for any kind of structure to start off the day (seriously, it was 4am....um, no.) Once we got them back asleep in our bed, we realized that they had taken our spots. 'Awake at 4am it is then, boo.' With everyone else asleep in all the rooms, we went out to the porch, cuddled on the couch and just talked. With all the planning and rushing and having that feeling of running around with my head chopped off, I don't remember the last time we were just able to talk and have a conversation. At least one that didn't have anything to do with the wedding.

We sat here for two hours listening to the birds fly in groups over the lake, we laughed at the annoying infomercials that were playing on the TV through the reflection from the living room that my sister was sleeping in next to us, we felt the fresh crisp breeze blow through the windows and we watched this sunrise slowly get a little higher. We knew we would probably get tired later, but we didn't go back to sleep. We talked about the weather there and our family and how we already didn't want to go back home after the weekend. We were hoping for a perfect day. And it really was the perfect start to a perfect day.

Randy went to work out and the kids slowly started waking up as my mama and sister helped me start to make my tablescape. We rented the tables and chairs locally and I brought all dishes and decor from home. It turned out just the way I wanted.

After we were finished setting things up, I went to hide out in the bedroom for the rest of the morning so Randy wouldn't see me. He brought me back a coffee with a #lyonlovelettersonstarbucks to start off our morning and it made me so happy. I've mentioned before, but every time he brings me a coffee, he writes me a note on the lid. I've kept them all. It's kind of "our thing." And besides my mimosa, it was the perfect jump start to my day! One of these days, I'll be doing something with the collection of them.

My hair and makeup was done by my good and sweet friend Lindsey Johanson with Glam2Go. She travels to you and makes brides feel gorgeous. I felt nothing short of that! 

As far as the rest of the day, I'll let the photos tell you the rest of the story...
Thanks for being here to remember back on our day with us. xx

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Some of you may know what a 'first look' is or have done it yourself with your spouse on your wedding day. As a photographer myself, I do these often and always encourage it if the couple is open to how they want their day to be. Some people wait to see each other when you walk down the aisle but this is another way to have a 'moment' between the two of you. This was an important moment for me and it turned out a little more dramatic on my end than I had imagined, haha. We both cried. But I cried. A lot. You know, the ugly face cry? Yeah. I did that throughout the whole ceremony too. 'When you know, you know,' was all that flowed out of my heart that entire day. I definitely wouldn't have had it any other way and these first moments of seeing each other before our day got started was so heavy and dear to my heart. I adore him so much and just looking back at his face in these is exactly the way I'll always remember him always adoring me just the same every single day. 

"One of the privileges of marrying a spouse with a child or children is that you marry your spouse and you marry your spouses child or children as well to become a "blended family." Family isn't always just a blood relative. It's the people in your life who want you in theirs, the ones who accept you for who you are. The ones who would do anything to see you smile and who love you no matter what. Becoming a bonus parent is a great honor. Your marriage partner would not be with you if your partner wasn't totally sure that you will be the parent that is needed to continue to guide and direct the children of this family to become the best person possible. Children of this marriage in turn agree that they will love, honor and obey their bonus parent because of the love Shelby and Randy have for each other. We will now have the children present to Shelby individual rings in support of their marriage and as a symbol of being a blended family. Each of the rings has the name of the child which symbolizes the relationship and bond each child brings to this union of Shelby and Randy." - in other words: my whole heart.

I sobbed during the whole ceremony pretty much (and let's be honest, the whole day.) I absolutely love these hand stamped personalized rings of the kids that each of them put on my finger during the ceremony. Every one of our babies will never know how much they truly mean to me or how much they have made an impact and have changed my life forever.

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---> Dreams really do come true + visions really do come to life. If you are not happy where you are, or know you are just not where you want to be, change it. Your life is what you make of it and no one else has the power it takes to get where you want to be other than yourself.

Look deeper, love harder, be patient and be yourself, take the time to truly find out who you are, what you want and what you need. Surround yourself with those who love you and hold close to you those who support and help guide you along the way. Find 'your people,' love them hard and stay as positive as you can each and every day, even on the toughest ones. This love story of ours has been quite the journey to find, but we both knew it existed somewhere out there and only time allowed us to be here today.

Your whole life is still waiting for you if you are not where you are supposed to be yet and I promise it's not worth settling for anything less. We are just here to encourage those who need it and we hope you find your dream and allow it to come true in the way that you deserve.

If you already know about our story and follow us on Instagram, @lifeinthelyonsden, thank you for your support! Do you have a blended family or a love story similar to ours? We would LOVE to hear yours! You can email us at: lifeinthelyonsden@gmail.com

Thank you for being here with us to watch our story unfold together.
Happy New Year! Here's to a greater one yet!

 

The Dress: AlexVeilBridal on Etsy. She took my measurements and custom made my dress from one of the few styles she has to choose from. In other words, sorry you can't borrow it, it was made to only fit me! haha.
Makeup + Hair: Lindsey Johanson from Glam2Go
Flowers: Made and put together by myself and my aunt.
Cake: Our amazing friend Libby at Libby's Kitchen
Hand Stamped Personalized Rings: Jessicandesigns
Photography: Twig + Olive Photography