The Offbeat Bride: Jodi, Social work student
Her offbeat partner: Kim, Respiratory Therapist
Date and location of wedding: The Boojum Tree Hidden Gardens, Phoenix, AZ — December 12, 2012
Our offbeat wedding at a glance: Our venue, The Boojum Tree Hidden Gardens, was beautiful enough that we only needed a few personal, DIY touches to create the atmosphere we were going for. Kim is very persistent, which came in handy for completing projects. We had our FDA (flower disbursement agent) scatter paper hearts punched out of sheet music ("Canon in D") and neon pink and green cardstock. Our RSA (ring security agent) walked our fur child, Scruffy, down the aisle along with our rings in a locked safe.
We made a paper heart and crystal curtain that draped behind our sweetheart table, and tree branches draped in bling and sparkle as centerpieces. We gave our guests two favors: a CD containing our love soundtrack (since I'm a DJ), and jars of Fluffernutter from Kimi, because I am the marshmallow fluff to her peanut butter.
We spent the few nights before the ceremony baking homemade desserts for our guests, and presented them during cocktail hour. Our philosophy is that life is short, so eat dessert first. Thankfully, Kimi's mom bailed us out when we realized we were in over our flour-covered heads.
Our wedding party all wore neon pink and green Chucks, and we wore black and white ones with our date, 12/12/12, embroidered into them.
Tell us about the ceremony: My sons gave me away, and we had seats honoring my mom who has passed, and Kimi's best fish friend, Fishie. Fishie was very excited about our big day, but unfortunately passed away before it arrived. We released a goldfish into the fountain where we said our vows in honor of her, and her presence was felt all day.
We said vows from a ceremony that we wrote, and then read "I love you because" lines to each other. We had a fun unity ceremony, too. We opened a trajillion glow sticks and separated the two fluids into hot pink glass vases, and then poured them into one glass vase and watched it instantly light up and glow!
Our dear friend, Koompa, read "I Love You" by Roy Croft. While we were pouring our glow sticks, she read this:
On this day you make a new light together, symbolizing the two becoming one. May the bright light that shines from each of you continue to feed the new light of love which will fuel your future together through all its hopes and disappointments, its successes and failures, its pleasures and its pains, its joys and its sorrows — a future filled with the warmth and love of the brightness you share today.
A few of our I love you because's:
Jodi to Kim
- your four-legged brain makes you my most loyal and loving friend
- you are Batman, a ninja, a platypus, a fish, and occasionally Handy Manny
- your brilliance makes everything around you brighter
- you manage to do or say something at least once every day that takes my breath away
Kim to Jodi
- you don't mind going to the children's museum… without any children
- you think I am awesome, and I am pretty sure you would still hold my hand even if I wore a real cape instead of the invisible one
- you eat the grape candies and the crunchy french fries
Our biggest challenge: A few months before the wedding, Kim was relocated out-of-town for work, and I had to stay behind to finish my semester. For the first time, we were separated from each other. That in itself was a challenge, but planning a wedding on top of the new job, finals, and miles between us was definitely a hurdle. We jumped it though, and racked up miles on the road as well as lessons in compromise and faith in each other. We both have inner "control freaks" who were taught how to relinquish it. We ended up falling more in love the harder it became, and now know that we always have the other's back.
Another challenge occurred after we attended a bridal expo and met a videography company who wowed us with their portfolio. We soon after began rearranging our budget to afford their services. After we emailed them, we were devastated to receive a response stating they would only document a union between a man and a woman. We were more affected by this than we had thought, and actually became squeamish about approaching other vendors. Thankfully, we were referred to Jakfoto Films through a friend, and they were so appalled at how we had been treated that they basically scooped us up and instantly began making up for the ignorance of other vendors. They have been embracing our love since then, and they documented our day like no one else possibly could.
Here's the result of their amazing expertise:
My favorite moment: Some of the most meaningful highlights were: our memory table full of photos of all of our loved ones who were there in spirit, and the viewing of a video created by our videographers documenting our love story and engagement (we didn't see it until that night with all of our guests!). One of our "best chicks" also rocked the best.toast.ever!
My funniest moment: Our wedding party entered the dancing phase of our reception Glee-style, which included ribbon twirling, boys spinning boys, and even the "rhythmically challenged" rockin' out to "Marry You."
Was there anything you were sure was going to be a total disaster that unexpectedly turned out great?
The dessert table was a hit despite our worries. It couldn't be done until the last-minute, and thanks to Kim and her mom pulling an all-nighter, it was breathtaking. I shamefully admit that I did not think it would come together since there were so many items to be baked, dipped, and decorated.
My advice for Offbeat Brides: Don't be afraid to let the "cheese factor" tip the scales. We found the silly, goofy, and even vulnerable sides to us were the ones that touched people the most. Letting go of what others might think was a challenge for me, but I really just wanted the world to know how much I loved her and how amazing she was. In order to truly let that show, I had to allow myself to be "adorkable" and open up.
What was the most important lesson you learned from your wedding?
- Lesson 1: If Kimi says it will happen, then she will make it happen
- Lesson 2: When the love is real, it flows freely and everyone feels it
- Lesson 3: We make a crazy awesome team. Rockstar + Ninja = WIN
Care to share a few vendor/shopping links?
- Bride's dress: Strut
- Venue: Boojum Tree
- Caterer: Put a Fork In It
- Cake: 21 cakes
- Photographer: Lightrain Images
- Videographer: Jakfoto Films
Enough talk — show me the wedding porn!
This post features Offbeat Vendors! Check out their vendor listing to see how they cater to Offbeat Brides: