I pretty much started planning our wedding shortly after we were engaged. I figured we knew our date- so might as well start.
Yes, our date. The number one thing we knew we wanted for our wedding. June 27. This was our anniversary date of way back when, when Ryan asked me to be his girlfriend. Right in front of my big burgundy van. And it just so happened to fall on a Saturday in 2009. Lucky us.
Since it meant I'd be a June bride, I had to get cracking- as to beat out all the other crazy's. We didn't really know what city right away. We knew Chico wouldn't be ideal for our out of town guests, since it was a drive- plus we knew we'd be moving. I didn't have a hometown, so that threw out the "Bride's town" idea. That left us with the bay area. I looked online for a few places, and we came down one weekend to check out some locations. Our first stop was a winery in a nearby town. Now, I lived here for a few years in high school, but never really knew that "wine country" existed so close. So when we toured the venue, we both got excited. Mainly because it was all brand spanking new. They were already booked on June 27, but the 28th was available, and since that was a Sunday, it would actually be cheaper.
Looking back, I don't know what came over us at this point. This place was all wrong for us, held way too many people than we were planing on inviting, and did not cover criteria numero uno: the date.
But we went with it for a few days. Until I had a total meltdown on our drive back up to Chico. As we were talking I said (behind tears and gibbering) I'd rather just go to the beach with our close friends and family, and then just have our reception at a nice restaurant.
And that is what we did.
We loved Carmel and Monterey, so I started looking at beaches there. Some couldn't be "rented" so that narrowed the playing field a bit. But then we found Stewart's Cove at Carmel River State Beach. It was perfect, sort of tucked away to make it more intimate. Ryan actually had been here as a kid, and his grandpa had painted a beautiful painting of this location from many years before. It was available on our date, so we jumped and booked it.
The restaurant took a bit more searching- and I enlisted the help of my mom to scour the Internet. We narrowed it down to a few. Luck was on our side when we found Il Fornaio in Carmel. Mainly because it was so gosh darn cute. Our wedding colors were black, white and green. So check out this place:
Yep, adorable. And it coordinated! They had a room for parties that held just as many people as we were planning. It also had a wall full of lovely windows.
There was also a balcony, which would serve perfect for our dance floor/cocktail hour.
Both of the locations were perfect. And ended up being perfect. It allowed us to have a little bit more unusual setting for a wedding, but not being awkward. It made our beach wedding, not a tacky affair, but a classy-unstuffy fun event.
The lovely thing about our wedding location, is we can go visit. And in the future we can take our kids there, and they can build sand castles and run in the waves, right in the very spot we were married.
|Our first wedding anniversary- at our spot!|