The Offbeat Bride: Kristin, Head IT Geek
Her offbeat partner: Tavia, Middle School PE Teacher
Date and location of wedding: Haleiwa Ali'i Beach State Park, Haleiwa, Hawaii — December 30, 2012
Our offbeat wedding at a glance: We used an old record player and played Elvis records while playing old Elvis beach movies in the background, an homage to our first date at a Tiki bar where we drank island cocktails and watched Elvis movies on the TV. Continuing with Tavia's love of Elvis, I surprised her with an Elvis-themed cake at our rehearsal dinner! It was a peanut butter and banana cake, and a custom-designed Sun Records label with our names and wedding date on it.
We hand-stamped each guest's initials on Mason jars for the Mai Tais they would enjoy at our reception, hosted in a private home we rented in Mokuleia. We also had custom-made ViewFinders made of both Tavia and I through the years.
Being that one of us has a career in technology, it was super important to us that we follow a very important mantra: “Low tech is the new high tech.” We asked that guests not post our details (like the date) on social media, and also asked that there be no cameras during our wedding. In return, we provided all our guests with their own set of the professional photos.
We designed our own invitations that modeled old time airline tickets with perforated edges, that included the invitation, an itinerary of activities in Hawaii, and the response card. Low tech is the new high tech!
Tell us about the ceremony:
Tavia's family mainly hails from and/or lives on Oahu. It was important to us to pay homage to her Hawaiian roots. We also didn't want a cookie-cutter ceremony, so with the help of our officiant, we were able to tailor our ceremony to fit us as a couple and a family. A close friend read this poem by Mari Nichols:
Because to the depths of me, I long to love one person, with all my heart, my soul, my mind, my body.
Because I want a forever friend to trust with the intimacies of me,
who won't hold them against me, who loves me when I'm unlikable,
who sees the small child in me, and looks for the Divine potential of me
Because I need to cuddle in the warmth of the night with someone who is thankful,
with someone I feel blessed to hold
Because marriage means opportunity to grow in love, in friendship
Because, knowing this, I promise myself to take full responsibility
for my spiritual, mental and physical wholeness
As I create me, I take half of the responsibility for my marriage
As together we create our marriage
Because with this understanding, the possibilities are limitless.
The ceremony included a traditional hula, music, and included prayers in Hawaiian:
Ka malamalama o ke Akua e ho'opuni mai oukou
Ka mana o ke Akua e ho'opakele mai oukou
Ke alo o ke Akua e malama mai oukou
Mai kahi oukou e hele aku ai he Aloha no
Our wedding rings were made in Hawaii, and our engagement rings are a traditional Claddagh ring, to celebrate my Irish roots.
To round out the ceremony, we included the children in the vows as well.
My favorite moment:
There was a period of time before the wedding, where Tavia, our daughter Alanna, my son Barrett, and I were stuck waiting in our car for the ceremony to start due to my in-laws being stuck in traffic and running late. It was just the four of us and we were all stir crazy and laughing and taking crazy pictures. It was just amazing having that alone time.
During our ceremony, everyone surrounded us in a circle (respectfully no phones or cameras were present), and there wasn't a dry eye. I love that everyone was present both physically and emotionally for us.
My funniest moment:
There was a part of the vows where Tavia said, “We pledge to each other to be loving friends and committed partners — to talk and to listen.” She said the “to talk and to listen” really loudly, and squeezed my hands really tight, emphasizing that I sometimes struggle to listen (It's true… I'm terrible at it). Everyone laughed, well, because they all knew why it was so funny.
What was the most important lesson you learned from your wedding?
If there was a lesson to be learned, it would be that we learned how much we are loved. Everyone stepped up to help and support us. We learned that old belief systems about (gay) marriage could be set aside for a day because love was more important.
Care to share a few vendor/shopping links?
- Photography: Jenny Marie Photography
- Engagement photos: Portraits to the People
- Dress: bought new on consignment at Emerald City Gowns, and then custom designed it to a tea length dress with blue tulle.
- Shoes: Vera Wang
- Tavia's wedding attire: Tommy Bahama
- Tavia's shoes: OluKai
- Rehearsal dinner: Downbeat Diner, our FAVE hipster eatery on Oahu. They can do a vegetarian loco moco that is amazing.
- Elvis cake: Cake Works
- Wedding day cakes: Ted's Bakery
- Oahu based planner and officiant: A Rainbow in Paradise
- Hair and makeup: North Shore Salon and Spa
- Shaved ice: Matsumoto's Grocery
- Cocktail hour: Haleiwa Joe's
Enough talk — show me the wedding inspo!