Like so many unfortunate couples, Katie and Joe had to postpone their wedding due to Covid-19. Then to make matters worse their original wedding venue closed down three weeks before their wedding day, so they were also left without a place to hold their dream day. Deflated, frustrated and full of worry, they had begun to lose hope.
Luckily, they were able to find a fabulous venue at short notice and that was at the stunning Park Manor in Warrington, Cheshire. Katie’s lovely mum got in touch with me to see if I could deliver their celebrant-led wedding ceremony and I was free, YAY!!
I got working straight away on Katie and Joe’s script and sent over a fun questionnaire for them to complete to learn more about their love story and how they work as a couple. It was clear from the moment I received their completed questionnaires just how much these two adore each other. They are high school sweethearts, best friends, soul mates.
Joe had been smitten with the smiling, funny girl with the beautiful blue eyes since he was 15 years old. Although, Katie took a little persuasion to see the extent of his charms, he soon won her over with his Bieber-esque locks and movie star persona, his caring nature and family values.
Now, we all love a good romantic proposal story, don’t we? Well, this one does not disappoint. On Katie’s 22nd birthday, Joe had arranged a champagne breakfast for them both on the roof terrace of Albert’s restaurant in Manchester. There he presented her with a photo book full of pictures of her nearest and dearest. On the final page, he had a photograph of Katie’s niece and nephews with t-shirts on that read on the back of them “We love you Auntie Katie but” on the front they read “Will you Marry Uncle Joe?” How lovely is that?
Marriage means a lot to Katie and Joe. It is the union of two people very much in love and so much more. For Katie and Joe marriage means that extra level of commitment and security, safety and reassurance, comfort in times of need and sorrow and applause in times of success. It is knowing that as long as they are together, they are home.
When Joe looks at Katie, he sees the perfect wife, the calm to his storm, the woman who makes him smile and laugh every single day. Katie also loves how funny Joe is, how he hugs her to sleep every single night and how, when she looks at him, she can see the family they one day hope to have together. A match made in heaven!
The big day was set for Sunday 20th December. I was so excited in the run up and couldn’t wait to deliver their ceremony. I expected it to snow or at least rain with the old delightful English weather. But the sun came out for the happy couple, bright and beautiful like the road that lies ahead for them.
Everything went perfectly! The ceremony was jam packed with personal touches that symbolised their love for each other and for their families. They had also arranged for the ceremony to be shown via zoom so that all their loved ones that were unable to come due to the restrictions would be able to witness their ceremony.
Katie’s two dear friends, Sian and Lucy, were in charge of the camera for zoom and they also decorated the ceremony room beautifully. Not forgetting, Joe’s best man, Nathan who was on hand to steady Joe’s nerves (with a cheeky pint or two) and guard the wedding rings.
When Katie entered the room, I swear Joe stopped breathing for a while. She looked absolutely stunning! Katie’s lovely dad, Steve, accompanied her down the aisle and both had huge smiles across their faces. Such a special moment for any Father and his daughter.
Katie and Joe are so close to their families and to their friends. So, involving them as much as possible meant a lot to them. Katie’s sister read a beautiful poem for everyone. Following this, the couple had decided on a unity candle ceremony. Katie and Joe’s parents took it in turns to light their candles, pride beaming from their eyes, and then Katie and Joe used these flames to light their own candle in the centre. The three candles represented the unity of the families. They were symbolic of the families they had came from and the new family they create in becoming husband and wife.
When it came to the time for Katie and Joe to exchange their vows and their rings there was not a dry eye in the house. I even had to swallow that knot in my throat on more than one occasion. The room was practically bursting at the seems with love and joy.
It really was such a privilege to get to know Katie, Joe and their family and friends. Mr and Mrs Burns, I wish you a lifetime of happiness together and thank you so much for choosing me be to be your Celebrant.