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St. Simons Wedding Planner :: Island Destination Weddings | Saundra Hadley
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Overheard at Your Wedding: “When is This Thing Gonna Start?”

It’s pretty well known that the party cannot start at the wedding without the bride and groom.  Your caterer will ask if they can serve your guests if you are not around or if they should extend the cocktail hour.  if you plan on taking photos during your cocktail hour, discuss with your planner and photographer the amount of time needed to complete these expeditiously so that your guests are not kept waiting.  This is especially true if you have a wedding during a very hot or cold season or with little entertainment during the hour.  If you take too long, you run the risk of running out of food, or running up your bar tab (when people are bored or nervous, they eat and drink). 

One of the biggest questions couples face today is whether or not to see each other prior to the ceremony.  I, as a die-hard romantic, felt like there was something magical about the groom’s face as he sees his bride ascend up the aisle for the first time.  That being said, I understood my brides’ concerns and desires to not see their grooms before walking up the aisle. 

Then there was Caryn—gorgeous, smart, and dare I say it, practical.  Caryn decided she would  see her groom prior to the ceremony.  As we built the timeline for them to secretly meet at Jekyll Island’s historic Villa Mariana, I crossed my fingers that the we could keep it private, intimate and magical.  Since Caryn and Jonathan’s wedding was at the Jekyll Island Club’s Crane Cottage, the Spanish Colonial, Villa Mariana was the perfect getaway that was close by.  Caryn described it as one of the most beautiful moments of her life.  She walked up behind Jonathan, put her hand on his shoulder and he emotionally turned around, visually took her in and swept her into a long embrace. 

It doesn’t get much better than that.

And the pictures prove it:

 

jekyll island wedding

 

jekyll island wedding

jekyll island wedding

jekyll island wedding

C and J hold hands

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Jekyll Club Wedding

       Jekyll Island Wedding

 

These moments, captured by the illustrious Scarlett Lillian just go to show that the same intimacy and magic you wish to capture at that moment going up the aisle, can still be present at a first meet.  Can’t you sense the anticipation and tingling in your toes when you see Jonathan’s back to Caryn?  You can almost feel his heart racing and see his unrelenting smile as the seconds tick away until that slight touch on his shoulder.  Imagine how he felt at that moment—not having to share Caryn’s beauty, that moment, that love—with anyone else.  It was theirs, and theirs alone.  Time had stopped.  (well, for them. The wedding planner was hard at work 🙂 )  Linens didn’t matter, the bar tab didn’t matter.  What mattered was that the most important person in their lives were together.  And in love.  Not only does it save you a lot of time during your cocktail hour, but it also gives you private moments that you may not have again until the end of the evening.

Still not convinced?  Check out what event engineer Saundra Hadley has to say, as well as photographer Jennifer Stone’s thoughts.  Either way, it is your moment…whether you spend it at a “first moment” or going up the aisle.  I know you’ll make it fabulous.

 

PS—The ceremony for Caryn and Jonathan was just as emotional.  I bawled the whole time. I know….Crybaby Wedding Planner. But I’m still awesome.

Eventology 2009

Photo :: JK Photography

I had the best time!  I was honored and humbled to speak at Eventology this year in Indianapolis, IN.  Planned by Katasha Butler of K. Sherrie + Co, I was able to speak alongside two women who I am so proud to call colleagues, but also lovingly call them friends:  Saundra Hadley of Planning…Forever Events and Liene Stevens of The Smart Planner.  It was really great to see Katasha’s vision come to fruition and to see so many planners and professionals reap the benefit of that vision in so many different ways.

Photo by JK Photography

It was really great to come face to face with so many people that I have interacted with for literally years.  To wrap your arms around some brilliant colleagues that you have laughed, cried and vented with was awesome.  Bill from Fabulous Events designed beautiful tables in some of my favorite colors—hot pink, tangerine and black, with the help of Deborah of A Bride’s Florist.?? Eventology was special because of the mutual respect of all the attendees for each other and the speakers.  It was great to get instant feedback, stories, and experiences of others during our time together.  Having attendees that came from across the country, it was interesting to see different methods of action, experiences and ideas.  Even as a speaker, I had an opportunity to learn so much from and through everyone, and am grateful to all of those that attended.

We were treated to a cocktail hour at the Omni Severin and a party at Club Six’s Milk Bar.  I didn’t get to stay long at the Milk Bar, as I wanted to be bright eyed and bushy-tailed to speak the following day, but the atmosphere was gorgeous.  Big snaps to la trabajadora, Eliana of By Your Side Events, who was able to get us some Nuvo for the party at Club Six.

There are great pictures every where on the net—the event’s official photographer, Jennifer Badalamenti of JK photography shared hers here, a recap from my fellow speaker, wedding planner sales genius (and friend) Saundra Hadley, Latrice of Opulent Events shared her experience, as did Aletha of Pearls Events, i do Signature Events, April Foster (finally, so happy to meet another glamazon like myself!) recapped, Amanda from Bliss Events was gracious enough to do a recap as well.

And of course…here are my not so official pictures…you know, where the party really is

Eventology

Precious (I SO heart her) of Precious Nuptials and Destinations with Charles Penn of Le’ Penn Designs

Eventology

Le’Trice and Charles Penn of Le’Penn Designs

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Precious & Charles

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Candice of Jubilee Events, Eliana (la trabajadora) of By Your Side Events, Kelly of Weddings By Socialites (rear) and Nicole Scott-Tate of Your Champagne Wishes (far right)

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Candice & Eliana

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Sukai of Dreamy Gelato (looking in her bag…her chocolates are so good,they should be illegal),Andria of Andria Lewis Events (in grey), Kay of Howerton-Wooten Events,

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My two home skillets:  Jennifer of A Regal Affair and Saundra

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LaKendra of Affairs of Elegance, Jeannine of Favor Events and Ami of Elizabeth Anne Designs

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Le’Trice and my Engage!09 roomate, Monica of The White Box

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Liene of The Smart Planner playing dress up. This was fun.

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Everyone’s fabulous shoes—and me with my new couture line for the Spring a la “Huck Finn”.  In other words, I’m the one with the bare foot.

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Liene and Ali Phillips (I SO heart her) of Engaging Events by Ali

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We found a greasy spoon to eat at….Somebody bring me something deep friend and smothered in chocolate!

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On the escalator after dinner

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A big fat bowl of icing from Cinnabon. I believe that is all that needs to be said. Let us bask in its glory.

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We were all taking bets on whether the flowers on the balcony were real.

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Liene and Monica

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Jen, me, Andria, Kelly, Saundra, and Katasha of K. Sherrie + Co., and also the innovator of Eventology.

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Saundra being an OG.  Katasha, visibly impressed.

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Kelly tells the BEST stories. Period.

As you can see, we had an AWESOME time!  I can’t thank all of the attendees for listening to us and teaching us as well!  I truly look forward to see what opportunities and experiences open up for Eventology next year!

Next Up— in Grand Cayman in June!!