The Offbeat Bride: Jessie, Social Worker
Her offbeat partner: Benjamin, Chef
Date and location of wedding: Wayfarer's Outdoor Chapel in Pahaska, Wyoming — June 15, 2013
Our offbeat wedding at a glance: My dad has lived in Wyoming for over 20 years. It's a special place for me. A year before we were engaged, Ben and I were out near Yellowstone and discovered an outdoor chapel totally by chance. We hiked up to it and were amazed at its simplistic beauty. Just over a year later, Ben proposed while hiking our beloved Mississippi bluffs and we decided it was meant to be — to go back to the mountains to the small chapel we had discovered together, for our ceremony.
It was a very small wedding, only our closest family and friends. My sister officiated and we wrote the ceremony together. We both wore cowboy boots. I wore a simple lace dress and my grandmother's antique necklace. Ben wore a corduroy jacket that he insisted we have elbow pads sewn onto, and a handmade batik tie I bought him.
After pictures and cocktail hour were over, we made it back down the mountain to the Pahaska Tepee Lodge where a fabulous dinner and a carrot cake for dessert (Ben's favorite) were waiting for us. Then everyone bundled up and enjoyed listening to music, fireside, for our reception. We all stayed in our own private and historic cabins after closing down the bar. It was the most beautiful day I have ever had. The next day, guests toured Yellowstone Park and went horseback riding, while Ben and I made it to our honeymoon cabin in Cooke City, Montana.
Tell us about the ceremony:
We incorporated our love for nature and each other into our ceremony, burned sage, and even opened with three “om's” from the mountain top! My maid of honor read a handwritten poem that fit us perfectly. She compared me to a flowing river and Ben to a solid mountain. We wrote our vows, and since we both had been wearing our rings since the engagement, we simply held hands as we said them. After our ceremony ended, we had a yummy cheese and fruit platter, handmade chocolates in the shape of boots and bears, wine, and local wild game summer sausage for appetizers up on the mountain, while a rancher friend played acoustic guitar.
Our biggest challenge:
Making sure everyone got there was challenging. There was a lot of traveling involved, and let's face it, Pahaska, Wyoming, is pretty remote. There was bad cell and GPS reception, but everyone got there safely.
I called the gal who had my hair and makeup appointment when I arrived into town, and she thought it was the following week! I was able to get in though and I ended up loving my hair.
My favorite moment:
A surprising moment was finding a huge gift basket of yummies and a heart-warming card in our cabin from my Yoga studio that I teach at. It was a really sweet gesture.
My funniest moment:
Jake couldn't get the sage lit for the ceremony because of the darn mountain wind!
Have you been married before and if so, what did you do differently?
I have been married before. I was only 20 years old and did not know who I was, what I stood for, or what I wanted. This time around, everything from what we wore, to who we invited, to what was said was much more Ben and me.
Care to share a few vendor/shopping links?
Enough talk — show me the wedding porn!