The Offbeat Bride: Aron, Photographer
Her offbeat partner: Kyle, software engineer
Date and location of wedding: Al Ringling Theatre, Baraboo, WI — December 31, 2011
Our offbeat wedding at a glance: We decided on a New Year's Eve wedding. I've always loved winter, and I couldn't picture my wedding without snow. We live in Wisconsin, and this year we haven't had much snow. So you can imagine how excited I was when it snowed the day before.
We questioned every choice and decided that there were a few very important things to us. Being a photographer, I wanted great photos. This stressed me out, but Kyle's cousin and her husband are amazing photographers. They were our biggest investment, and it was worth every single penny. Food and drink were also really important. We had to have it and it had to be good. Last, we wanted a lively DJ who could keep our diverse crowd entertained through to the New Year.
Tell us about the ceremony: My brother-in-law, Craig, got ordained online via Dudeism.com. We aren't religious and we didn't want a random judge. We wanted someone who knew us and would put a personal touch to the ceremony. I had the entire ceremony written from scratch before we decided that Craig would be our officiant. Writing the ceremony was where the Offbeat Bride Tribe really came in handy. Kyle and I each wrote our own vows and exchanged rings with each other and our year-old daughter. She loved her ring so much that she tried to eat it! We also included a unity cocktail of UV Vodka and Lemonade, which was what we were drinking on our first date.
A strange thing happened to me today. I saw a big thundercloud move down over Half Dome, and it was so big and clear and brilliant that it made me see many things that were drifting around inside of me; things that relate to those who are loved and those who are real friends.
For the first time I know what love is; what friends are; and what art should be.
Love is a seeking for a way of life; the way that cannot be followed alone; the resonance of all spiritual and physical things. Children are not only of flesh and blood — children may be ideas, thoughts, and emotions. The person of the one who is loved is a form composed of a myriad mirrors reflecting and illuminating the powers and thoughts and the emotions that are within you, and flashing another kind of light from within. No words or deeds may encompass it.
Friendship is another form of love — more passive perhaps, but full of the transmitting and acceptances of things like thunderclouds and grass and the clean granite of reality.
Art is both love and friendship and understanding: the desire to give. It is not charity, which is the giving of things. It is more than kindness, which is the giving of self. It is both the taking and giving of beauty, the turning out to the light of the inner folds of the awareness of the spirit. It is a recreation on another plane of the realities of the world; the tragic and wonderful realities of earth and men, and of all the interrelations of these.
Our biggest challenge: Our original officiant is a police officer and has trouble getting time off from work. We didn't know until the month of December if he would be able to make it. In the end, he wasn't able to get off of work in time. I was freaked out because everyone else I had asked declined. It was a huge stress for me, but eventually we just made Kyle's brother Craig do it. He was nervous, but he totally rocked it. He even came up to the bridal suite the day of the wedding to go over a few things he had written himself. I hope someday I can return the favor for him.
My favorite moment: We decided to have a yichud after our ceremony. Kyle and I retreated to the bridal suite on the second floor of the theatre and shared our first few moments of marriage alone. It was the most peaceful part of our whole day. Kyle started to cry because he was so happy. It was so sweet. I cry when I think about it now. Also, the vows we made to our daughter were so special. I know she won't remember it, but it was very important to us that we vowed our lives to her as well.
My funniest moment: We had gotten all the guys tuxedo t-shirts to wear under their real tuxedos. They also had their nicknames on the back of the shirts, and Kyle's nickname is "Squeeks." At the end of the dance, my uncle Scott came up and wrote Mrs. Squeeks on my back so I would match Kyle!
Was there anything you were sure was going to be a total disaster that unexpectedly turned out great? Our rehearsal didn't go so well. It was kind of rushed because we had to cram our decorating time and our actual rehearsal time into the same slot. More time was spent making sure the decorations were perfect than making sure the ceremony was perfect. I was a little worried because everyone was hungry and wanted to get to dinner, and we didn't really have time to run through it again. I know my brother-in-law was probably more stressed about it than I was but I knew he would pull it off. The ceremony went perfectly and no one would have ever noticed that we only ran through it once.
My advice for Offbeat Brides: Listen to your partner. It's their wedding, too. Kyle had lots of things to say about how we spent our money and what he wanted our wedding to look like. It's important to have them by your side during this stressful time. Plus, it gave us something else to bond over besides poopy diapers and parenting.
Care to share a few vendor/shopping links?
- Photography: Katie and Gene'o Berger of Kage Imagery
- Reception Hall: Baraboo Arts Banquet Hall
- Bride's prom dress and tuxedos: Brides N' Belles
- Maid's and mom's dresses: Specially Hers
- Birdcage veil: David's Bridal
- Groom's ring: Metal Masters Co.
- Catering: TJ's Catering
- Cupcakes: Katie Lowden
- DJ: Musical Memories Mobile DJ
Enough talk — show me the wedding porn!