I can’t tell you how often I close my eyes and wish I was back at our wedding reception–it was just so much fun! This post is a little photo-heavy because I didn’t want to leave out any of my favorite moments :)
As you know, we were “introduced” during cocktail hour and did a quick receiving line as people entered the reception. Dave and I did do a second mini-entrance into the reception as well–once everyone was seated, our DJ announced us (in his amazing Irish accent!) and played Josh Turner’s “Will You Go With Me” as we walked in. I love the picture below–walking in was the first time I saw the reception all set up, and I was so happy with it!
Dave and I went right to the center of our dance floor for our first dance, to “Wagon Wheel” by Old Crow Medicine Show. This song was a given for us–it followed us throughout our dating days, and we danced to it everywhere from an Irish pub in Syracuse, to a honky tonk in Austin, to the night we got engaged! As much as it’s “our song,” our wedding day also gave us a new “song” (keep reading for the story!), so “Wagon Wheel” now mainly reminds us of our pre-wedding days, which is so special in its own way. We never ended up taking dance lessons, so we just winged it. I thought it was perfect :)
Dinner came after our first dance, and I must say, Fearrington nailed it–their catering team is wonderful! As everyone wrapped up their main courses, Dave’s best man, Patrick, gave his toast. It was hilarious and just sentimental enough–everything I think a best man toast should be. He had some great material to work with because he and I have known each other since long before he and Dave met! Next up, my two sisters (my co-maids of honor) gave toasts. It was so surreal hearing them speak to me at my very own wedding, and they both said such beautiful things (complete with just the right number of One Tree Hill references ;)). You can hear some bits and pieces in our wedding video, which I’ll be posting on Thursday.
Our cake cutting came next! I remember getting up there and thinking, “Umm, I don’t actually know how to do this??” I tried to cut way too small of a piece before Dave took over!
My dance with my daddy was one of my favorite moments of the night. He’s a music buff, so I asked him to choose the song–he went with “Little Miss Magic” by Jimmy Buffet, and it was perfect. He raised my siblings and I on Jimmy Buffet music, and few things remind me of him more! I couldn’t make it through the dance without tearing up…but at least I held it together a little better than my mom, who bawled through the whole thing ;)
Next, Dave and his mom had their dance. They started out dancing to “Say a Little Prayer for You,” which then transitioned into a polka! Wedding polkas are a Kirk family tradition, so a few steps into their dance, the DJ invited everyone to join them on the dance floor. My family has Polish heritage as well, so it was a tradition everyone was more than happy to jump in on!
I really wanted to dance a lot, and am so happy that that’s exactly what I did!! Once the dance floor opened, I stayed there for most of the night, breaking only to show my Grandma her and my Grandpa’s wedding picture in our family photo display and to sneak a few bites of our wedding cake. As you can see below, Dave changed into a “dancing bow tie” and it was awesome :)
While we skipped the garter toss, I think the bouquet toss has such a sweet rite of passage feel to it, so I decided to do one. I love the song we chose for it–Michael Buble’s “Haven’t Met You Yet.” My little sister caught the bouquet, and though it was definitely not accurate (one of my beautiful bridesmaids is getting married this weekend!), it was so much fun!
For our last dance of the night, we asked the DJ to bring the reception full circle and play Darius Rucker’s version of “Wagon Wheel.” Everyone ended up making a circle around us and singing out loud, until the very end when Dave pulled me into the middle for the last chorus.
After the last song, everyone walked outside to line up for the sparkler exit, which led to both my and Dave’s unexpected favorite moment of the entire day…and honestly, a favorite of our entire lives. I was standing alone in the middle of the dance floor while everyone left, just looking around and trying to take in the last few seconds of this beautiful day as well as I could. All of a sudden, I heard the first few notes of “La Vie en Rose” come on over the speakers. Before I even realized what was happening, Dave pulled me close for one more dance, just the two of us, all alone in the middle of the dance floor. We just held each other and cried and said “We’re so lucky” over and over again…I couldn’t believe our wedding day was over and it had been so, so wonderful!! I don’t know who grabbed Ryan to get this photo, because I definitely didn’t notice him there, but I’m so grateful he caught it. It gives me butterflies thinking back on that moment!!
And with that, we held hands, took a deep breath, and ran through the sparkling rows of our loved ones! Getting into Dave’s car and driving away, I remember feeling completely, totally overwhelmed with gratitude. Our wedding day had been magical, and our marriage was just beginning. What a blessing :)
Thank you to our dear friend, Ryan Ray, for capturing our wedding day so perfectly!