Emilie & Gary April 21, 2018
How it all began

"Well when we first met it was when we both were working at Bass Pro Shops in Macon, GA. Let me tell you , love at first sight, isn't exactly what happened with us to begin with. Gary and I are both into cars and are on total separate sides of that world. Back then I owned a Hyundai Accent which was a little bitty hatchback I owned while he had a Chevy Truck. My family is all about fords while his was all Chevy. The first thing he ever said to me was how silly my car was and how it was a "rice burner" [that is basically an insult to import cars coming from us sports car folks] and for him to say that to me got me angered and literally that night I made a very long Facebook status about him complaining how rude and annoying he was , and to this day Facebook memories will always remind me of it lol! So in time he kept pursuing me, mind you I just came out of an emotionally abusive relationship and dating was FAR from my mind, though, he did respect that and took time to stay away but yet was always there for me. Soon we started staying way late past the time we got off and would sit in my car just to talk. As we kept on talking more and more , the hangouts began and soon friends started noticing and teasing. Eventually on March 15th in his apartment during a special dinner date with a bunch of friends we went outside on his porch and confessed that we wanted to make it official that we were boyfriend and girlfriend but there was a problem we soon would face; my family was moving to Florida and I had no way of staying due to my job not providing enough to live on my own and no friends were looking for roomies by then. So i had to make a difficult decision, move away from my new boyfriend and try long distance? Or move in with him after only dating him for about 2 months. Obviously you know the decision I made and somehow we made it click easy! Of course, before moving in, I would stay the night with him for one or two days, then it soon turned to a week and well we knew we could do it! 

Now after about a month or two of living in the apartment we went and moved into a trailer in Lizella where soon we would add two puppies and a new kitten to our lives. Not only did our family grow but soon a question would pop earlier than I thought would happen. At the time he asked the big question, we were only dating for about 8 months which is crazy to some folks but to be honest, with living together for that amount of time we knew it could work permanently. Trust me my mind troubled at the thought of us setting it so early but then I thought that I knew a lot of folks that got engaged at 6 months and are still together to this day [ IE: My parents ;) ] So I knew we would be ok, though, our parent's reaction, was...quite weird. My mom sounded tired when she answered the phone but when we told her she was wide awake cheering loudly LOL Now.....as for his mom...first question that came to mind "Omg Emilie are you pregnant???" and we just awkwardly stood there holding the phone like "umm...no??" Because a lot of folks knew Gary and thought that was the only reason he would get married to someone [ Yea I know it's sad haha!]"

How did Gary pop the question?

"Now as for popping the question , what came to my mind was some sort of extravagent scenery with people watching and a camera man on the side ready to catch the proposal, but to be honest, that is not what happened at all! It is still very memorable though. See we were setting up our first Christmas Tree together in the house, Gary looks down at the bottom of the tree stating that there were lights out of it [I mean we literally just bought this tree!!! So i was confused lol!] Then as he comes from under the tree saying he found the bulb he's down on his knees looking up at me with the ring in his hand, his eyes glistening with nerves and hope mixed within them as he asked the question. Now mind you guys he is a BIG jokester and would always play around getting on his knee to screw around with me all the time so I for real thought this was a joke and started laughing like "are you serious? Is this a joke?" and started giggling, but as I looked into his eyes I could tell it wasn't and my eyes started to tear up as I didn't even HESITATE to say yes.  [I don't know how any girl can say it took time to get the answer out their mouths cause I was quick to respond for sure] I had no idea that he even got the ring! It was actually during while we were visiting family and were attending the local mall they had that he went to get the ring after stating he wanted to go to the bathroom."

Share something fun or special about your wedding planning phase.

"I think the most fun part of the wedding planning phase was going to all the different venues and seeing so many beautiful areas and landscapes that everyone had! Traveling to them and meeting amazing people was awesome to have. As a photographer, my keen artistic eye was in love with everything <3"

Share something fun or memorable about your rehearsal and/or rehearsal dinner. 

"Aside from being an emotional mess I actually really enjoyed the food that my mother in law made for everyone! Authentic Mexican Food is always amazing to me!"

If you wrote your own vows, please share how you came up with them and why?

"We didn't write vows but , to be honest, I am upset with myself not making them at all."

Tell us about your wedding day.  What was your favorite part?  Would you do anything differently?  What would you share with people planning their day?  

"My favorite part out of it all was definitely the photos. I never get any pro photos of me because I am always the one behind the lens so to finally be the model was a lot of fun! Having the memories created and shot meant a lot to me so I could look back on it all. 

What would I change? Gosh a lot to be honest, our sign didn't get signed hardly at all so I would have raised it up for folks to actually see and sign. I wish I wouldn't have rushed so much during the ceremony or I may have noticed my veil falling off or me leaving my bouquet behind when we left as a married couple, rushing was definitely something that happened a lot during the wedding and I wish it didn't happen. 

With the experience I had with my wedding I definitely recommend wedding planner for sure! If it wasn't for Kathy I would have never had all of the amazing decorations and the whole "car theme" come to life! I actually about gave up on that before knowing about Kathy. It took a TON of stress off of us and hey we even got to keep the decorations which is an ultimate bonus to us. Never ever think of if something will go wrong at the wedding because something WILL , it never phases me on the many weddings I have been to along with my own, that SOMETHING went wrong whether something was late, someone didn't show on time, DJ being rude, etc. ; just remember to smile and have fun,  your bridal party and maid of honor are the ones to stress during this day to make YOU happy not for you to stress about anything :)"

If you did First Look, First Touch, First Talk, etc. tell us about it.  Would you recommend it to others?

"We did First Touch and well some talking in it haha! I tell ya I was so nervous when we stood at the doors holding each others hand not being able to see each other dressed. My heart raced and all I wanted to do was just look around the corner and give him a big hug [since we did the traditional sense of not being around each other night before after rehearsal] His hand was shaking and sweaty and by the way he talked he sounded like he was so nervous! I giggled and felt my heart sour as I felt him and heard his voice that we were finally on our special day that we dreamed for the 4 years we were engaged. 

I would so recommend that First Touch for sure ! It relaxes you both and allows you to talk just a little to relax yourselves before going down that isle. It makes you smile and forget any sort of stress or bad thing you feel is going on at the wedding. Now , as a photographer, I have had a couple do First Look and its just as emotional because it is a private moment with no huge crowd watching you, the same reaction will come as the man sees his woman in the most beautiful attire he has ever seen her in and it will bring tears I assure you. It's all on when you want it to happen that makes that decision of whether having the First Look happen [for my wedding I did First Look with my dad and he had NO clue what I would look like and what my dress looked like, he didn't cry but I could tell, him being a military man, he was holding it in. I held my tears in my laughing and being my bubbly self]"

How was your experience at The Wedding Barn at L'Horne?  Is there anything you would change?  What was your favorite part of having your special day with us?

"I would change nothing with this venue. You guys NAILED it on southern hospitality. When it came to my wedding, all I heard from my guests was the constant love on the Venue. Thats all I heard was how much folks enjoyed the atmosphere of the place and how beautiful it was. The thing I wanted was my guests to enjoy what I have experienced in my FFA days, getting that southern country feel of sitting on a rocking chair on a porch and seeing nothing but land for miles, to get away from the city life and see a bigger picture [I have friends that own a dairy farm so it's because of them I have had those feelings hit me already so its why I wanted others to see and feel what I had] To see all the people mingling with each other and talking to each other made me flutter with happiness, these folks have never even met and they all were conversing like they were best friends and it was all because of that southern feel we got from the Venue."

Is there anything else you you would add to your wedding story?

"One thing I remember is discovering that my dog , Boomer, does NOT like drones AT ALL. Poor baby was so scared that when he was taken from me during pictures he started scrambling my way towards me when he saw me enter the barn. Needless to say he did have fun because as we entered the car he knocked out and slept the whole ride home! He loved meeting all the new folks he could meet at the venue , just not that drone haha"

Something else Emilie wanted to share.

"Don't ever be afraid to ask Anna or her husband for anything and I mean ANYTHING. They will always be there for you and always check on you to make sure your wedding experience is going to be great. It's because of them I even met Kathy who is a DOLL by the way!  She's not afraid to make any suggestions that come to her mind.  You give her what you looking for, she will make it happen."

The Wedding Barn at L'Horne

1651 Moseley Rd.

Byron, GA 31008

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