The truth is people have the ability to change you. It can be a simple smile to change your outlook on the morning, a kind gesture to carry you through the day or it can be a big enough change to make an imprint on your heart.
You see, I am in the business of love. Over the past 15 years I have seen countless love stories, beautiful events and people have crossed my path that have changed me for the better.
When I revamped the website we lost the existing blog and galleries. It has been a goal of mine to revisit events of the past – to re-share marriage days in all their glory. The intricate details; the way a groom looked at his bride, the way a mother so delicately helped her daughter into her dress, the way a couple floated back up the aisle after reciting their vows. Most of all, I want to repost those weddings for you to see the pure joy that my couples get to feel on their wedding days. Joy because I get the honor of taking away all of the legwork and small details – which allows my couples the ability to enjoy their day, to focus on each other and their marriage.
It was August 2013 and I had the pleasure of hearing from Sarah. She was excited to be getting married October 11, 2014 at the Mayo Hotel. I know Sarah from college, but had only heard of Kyle as we had never met. Sarah is the girl you want to know, to know her is to love her. When her wedding was over I told my mom that I wanted to bottle her up and put her in my pocket. She was a constant ray of sunshine, she gave compliments straight from the heart and valued having people around her that were great at their craft, and that she could learn from.
I will never forget the trust she put in me as her wedding planner and designer. I remember proposing a welcome tree to her. An actual tree, in the lobby of the hotel but would need her complete trust to pull it off. She agreed at our design meeting and I was able to give her the best surprise on her marriage day. We laughed so hard that the hotel still gave me a table for the “welcome tree” because they didn’t believe that my team would wheel in a 200lb base and almost 30′ tall tree we adorned with 5″x7″ escort cards. A “tree” that most definitely would have crushed a table.
We saved a tree from the wood chipper. She may have been most proud that we created a beautiful conversation piece that not only served a purpose, but that was created sustainably.
Sarah wanted an elegant dinner party. An evening to celebrate those around her and Kyle as much as they were set to celebrate their marriage. When I tell you that wonderful people surround themselves with like people, this wedding was the definition of that. Each person in the room was a ray of sunshine. From Thomas who spoke at the ceremony about the kind of man Kyle is, to Laura Beth who gave the most beautiful toast at the reception. She spoke about a lady she and Sarah heard at a sorority convention. The speaker (speaking about her husband) said:
“People say I love you from the bottom of my heart, but hunny, for you, my heart has no bottom.”
I will never forget the toast she gave about the kind of love Sarah had found, “the kind of love that sweet lady had found in her husband, she knew that Sarah had found in Kyle.” Those two lines could define the entire wedding alone – just watch their first look.
It was the biggest honor to bring Sarah’s elegant dinner party to life. To work with incredible creative teams like Wade Tower, to serve her family, to assist her brothers with a a family prank (all in appropriate fashion because I am most certainly one to protect any of my events like a mama bear 🙂 ) and to allow her time to change into her mothers wedding gown for their exit. What a joy it was to have a front row to the once-in-a-lifetime magic that was that day, with those people. If you don’t believe me here is a 5 minute peek from the talented duo PenWeddings.
To be honest, I didn’t think loosing Sarah would lead me to this post, but here we are. Sarah went home to be with the Lord a few weeks ago, and while we had only spoke a few times over the past 9 years, each time we did she was that same ray of sunshine. She was far too young to go, and I know she will be greatly missed by many.
For those of you who knew Sarah, I hope this post brought a smile to your face. For those of you who just met Sarah and Kyle through this post, I hope it brought a smile to your face as well.
When I say that all of my couples are forever part of the CLE Family, I truly mean it. Whether a wedding from 15 years ago, or a few weeks ago, the moments and memories I hold close are many. They are moments I look forward to sharing more of right here on the blog. So buckle up, because I have so many wonderful memories to share!
Planning, Design and Production: Christina Leigh Events
Images: Chris Humphrey
Entertainment: Wade Tower
Venue: The Mayo Hotel
Lighting: OMNI Lighting
Linens: Nuage Designs
Floral: The French Bouquet
To read more about Sarah Hummel Brown please click here.