The Crawfords Desert Romance
I don't even know where to start so I am going to just dive right !
Jesse and I had been together nearly 9 years and had two babies by the time he got down on one knee and asked me to marry him. A lot of you ask, why? Why did you guys wait so long? Well, when you're with someone from the age of 17 and have your first baby by 19 you've kind of already gone against what's "right", so what's the rush then? Or at least that's how I felt. I also knew that I did not want a courthouse wedding (no offense, just not my jam) and I don't like to half ass anything. We both knew we were committed and wanted nothing more than our family, so until the day came where Jesse would ask me to be his wife and we would be in the position to have the wedding of our dreams it wasn't happening...
But, that all changed when the time was right! In my previous blog post I talk about our story and engagement, check that out here if you haven't already!
I'm a little bit of a "know it all" (I don't really, but sometimes think I do). I thought planning a wedding was no different than planning a birthday party or a business event. Well, I was WRONG. First of all, I did not even really start planning until July, our wedding date was 10-01-16, which gave me 3 months to plan the most magical day of our lives. Jesse and I got engaged about 10 months before the date we set, which means I should have started my planning LIKE the day after, duh! It really hit me and started to stress me out when I sat down to write our invite list and had over 250 people on it, shit was getting real.
One of the BEST decisions I made for our day was to have a 'first look'. Both my wedding planner and photographers were really wanting us to do a 'first look', I was skeptical about it because I wanted there to be that big moment when Jesse saw me for the first time walking down the isle. At the same time I knew how crazy the boys would be after the ceremony and really wanted to make sure we had "family time" to celebrate with just us. It was one the most special moments of my entire life. Seeing the boys feeling as anxious as I was waiting for daddy to see mommy in her wedding dress all ready to become his wife. I feel like I got that big moment and even more. We got to be fully present and enjoy it with our babies. Not to mention, got the most AMAZING family photos I could have ever dreamed of.
Another huge part of our day that made it "US" is our wardrobe choices. We definitely did not go for the traditional vibe, with anything! But really, when have we done anything traditional? Never.
TIP #1// KEEP YOUR VIBE ALIVE. You will never get this day back.
I did not know a lot going into this whole process but I did know one thing for sure. I wanted it my way, my style, my vibe, my music, my designs, MY Wedding! Right?! We would wear what felt normal. We did not want a wedding party. After all, this day was about us four and thats as simple as that. My grandmother would be our officiant. End of Story. A two piece gown is what spoke to me. A beanie or hat is what jesse felt comfortable in. White button ups were as "fancy" as my boys wanted to be. It wasn't until the morning before our wedding we were on the boat listening to music and I heard 'Eyes on Fire' by Blue Foundation (one of my all time favorite songs) that I decided that's what Jesse and the boys would walk down the isle to. I walked down the isle and our first dance was to 'Love Me Like You Do' by Ellie Goulding because it made me feel sexy. I chose to wear my 4 year old rugged combat boots instead of be barefoot for my ceremony. We were introduced at our reception as Mr. & Mrs. Crawford with 'Started From The Bottom' by Drake playing in the background. We successfully kept our vibe alive and pretty certain if you ask anyone who was there they would say it was the BEST wedding they've ever been to!
TIP #2// HIRE A WEDDING PLANNER, NOT JUST ANY BUT MY GIRLS LAURA & DANIELLE OVER AT 'PERFECTLY POISED EVENTS'
After Laura had come over for a consultation, basically 3 hours of opening my eyes to so many little details that I would have NEVER thought of until the day of my wedding and I guarantee I would have been so unhappy. With only 3 months to go before the BIGGEST day of our lives (aside from the 2 days our boys were born) I was ready to do the damn thing. Laura was too! She became my full time, 8 phone conversations a day personal assistant, therapist, negotiator, designer, and so much more. I had a vision and she BROUGHT IT TO LIFE! Today I can call her one of my very best friends.
TIP #3// DO NOT pass on hiring a videographer! #bestdecisionofmylife
You truly will NEVER have these moments back, ever. This was something I contemplated more than anything, I had so many people tell me they never even watched their video after their wedding. Well, we did and we still do! So much happens during this day that you don't get to see, feel, hear, and enjoy because let's face it, your wedding day is a blur. It flies by quicker than you could ever imagine. Hiring The Quail & The Dove was probably one of the best decisions in my life! No joke. Not to mention they were phenominal to work with! Enjoy the video!
TIP #4// YOU ARE THE ONLY ONE WHO WILL KNOW SOMETHING DID NOT GO THE WAY YOU WANTED IT TO, NOT EVERYONE ELSE..... WELL, MAYBE (but don't stress the small stuff)
I am going to tell you that shit is going to go south at some point and you have to just roll with it.
Like, when your veil takes over the first half of your ceremony because the wind is pulling your whole head in the opposite direction while almost catching on fire and wrapping itself around the cactus. I ended up making a joke out of it in front of everyone "I had to buy the longest f*cking veil they sold didn't I!". Or your custom arch being blown over by the wind minutes before your ceremony and breaking half of the ceramic planters in the macramé holders. Just to name a couple things.
A few other things starting from the get go did not quite go as planned. Originally we wanted to have our wedding in the middle of the desert where Jesse proposed, and that was the "plan". Well, there were a few minor details like bathrooms, how guests with cars would get out there, ect. We decided to change the venue to the Bluewater Casino & Resort in Parker, Az. That was until, 3 weeks before our wedding day when we found a venue that was everything I could have dreamed of and more. Havasu Springs Resort it was! The 'Point' was a cliff that overlooked the water. It was perfection and I knew that is where we had to say "I Do".
TIP #5// GO ALL OUT! YOU WILL THANK YOURSELF LATER.
Lastly, this day only happens once in your life, well maybe not but hopefully for us! Haha! Being a small business owner it was very important to me to work with other small business owners in my wedding. Little did I know I would end up working with 25 of them. Okay, I know that sounds crazy but I wasn't lying when I said I wanted to GO ALL OUT with the details. Each and every one of them meant so much to me. THANK YOU from the bottom of my heart!
Floral// Interior Gardens
Photo Booth// Classic photo Booths
Jewelry// Erin Fader Jewelry
Air Plants// Plant In The Air
Cactus// Desert Theater
Custom Neon Sign// Echo Neon Studio
Cakes & Desserts// Bang Pop Shop
Rentals// Sundrop Vintage
Rentals// Out Of The Dust Rentals
Paper Goods & Calligraphy// L Shannon Designs
Laser Cut Table Numbers// The Duo Studio
Hand Dyed Silk Ribbon// Silk & Willow
Custom Concrete Ring Vessels// Chalk Concrete
Custom Macramé// Teddy & Wool
Invites// EP Design House
Bride H&MU// Samantha Touw