family life

The Wedding: Our Oldest is MARRIED!

Last Saturday, Brandon got married.

Wedding couple in grass

Lindsey spent the night before the wedding at Diane’s mom and dad’s house with all the other bridesmaids. Ken and Kathryn and I arrived there before lunchtime to get photos of the girls getting ready, and to do some of the detail shots, like rings and shoes and The Dress. Diane’s mom mentioned that she had her wedding dress and her late mother’s wedding dress upstairs if we wanted to do anything with them. I jumped on that: how beautifully sentimental! Through tears, her mom told us it felt like having her there with them.

Wedding dress

A few weeks ago, I offered Diane my brooch to use; I wore it in my wedding and both of Lindsey and Kathryn have said they want to wear it in some way for their weddings. Diane was delighted, and decided it would be perfect pinned on the lace from her mom’s wedding dress that would be wrapped around her bouquet. It meant a great deal to me that she used it, and now my brooch will have even more meaning when Lindsey and Kathryn use it someday.

wedding bouquet with brooch

We set a record that day for the ALL-time high temperature in Atlanta (106 degrees) and had a Code Purple air quality alert (that’s worse than what I thought was the highest alert of Code Red). I had a cold, and went through nearly half a box of Kleenex just driving the hour or so to the wedding venue. I wasn’t sure I could make it through the ceremony without sneezing at some key moment, and I looked like I was crying all day from my watering eyes. But thankfully, the achy feeling I had in the few days before had gone away by Saturday. It was an outdoor ceremony, and everyone was concerned about the heat. All day leading up to the wedding Diane instructed everyone to lie and tell her it was “86 and sunny.

Wedding bride

Thankfully, no one melted or passed out, and we even found shade for photos. Everything looked exactly like Diane had pictured it, from the green grass, to the lemon and hydrangea aisle decorations, to the honeysuckle and mason jars with candles in the arbor they stood under. It was beautiful.

Wedding aisle

Wedding violinist

Brandon knew that Diane had engraved the inside of his ring with “forever and always.” That wasn’t a surprise. But he had her simple solitaire engagement ring reset and kept it hidden from her until the moment he placed it on her finger during the ceremony. Gorgeous, isn’t it?

Wedding rings

During the ceremony, Brandon cried. So did Diane. They giggled — which made everyone else giggle. They exchanged vows and rings and kisses. And they were married.

Wedding Kiss

And now, y’all, I have a new daughter. {Thanks to a tripod and a helpful guest to click the shutter button, we got in one of the group shots.}

Wedding Family

With all the blendedness going on in our family, we confuse people. Brandon’s stepdad officiated the ceremony. Ken and I photographed it. There were grandparents and step-grandparents. Brandon’s siblings from his mom’s side, and from our side. But we all get along, and I think sometimes that confuses people more than the complicated relations.

wedding reception dance cake

The reception was lovely, and had all the things a good reception ought to have: dancing, toasts, a beautiful (and yummy!) cake, laughter, a few tears, and AIR CONDITIONING!

At the end of the night, we sent the couple off amidst sparklers in Diane’s dad’s ’57 Chevy. They spent the night locally, and are now honeymooning in Savannah.

Wedding Sparklers

We were completely exhausted by the end of the night, and fell into bed well past midnight. Kathryn lost a tooth right after we were all in bed, and she came to tell me about it. That amused me; earlier that day I’d thought about what different stages of life our kids are in, and her tooth falling out on the day our oldest got married just demonstrated that perfectly.

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Thank you for sharing all of these photos… I love your sentiment at the end. You are getting to experience all the best parts of children’s lives at one time. What a blessing!

I also love the wedding cake – so simple and classy.

I hope you have a VERY restful July 4th, Jamie!

It looks and sounds like an absolutely beautiful, picture-perfect wedding. Congratulations to your family!


Congratulations! That top picture is beautiful! They were so blessed to have you to photograph the wedding!


You know what I love best… other than how lovely the wedding day sounds and looked… I love how truly BLENDED you guys are…. it’s not Ken’s eldest… it’s OUR eldest. It shines through your whole blog with ALL your children and is TRULY the most beautiful gift you give each other, and share with us. God is good!

Mark D.French

Despite the heat the wedding looks perfect, and the place goes well with the family.


What a beautiful wedding! The pictures are lovely…love the three generations of wedding gowns! You did a wonderful job…I can imagine it must not have been easy to be the photographers and have such a close connection. The archway they stood under is gorgeous and your family is beautiful! Congratulations!!!


What a beautiful day! I love the picture of the rings! You all blend together to a family obviously full of love!


What beautiful pictures. Looks like a very happy couple and a beautiful start to a new life together.
Thank you for sharing!

Sienna Armstrong

Congratulation to both of you guys! God bless and have more blessing to come… The wedding cake is so beautiful and looks so delicious.


I especially like the bags of lemons attached to the guests chairs, that is a great idea! This post was so fun to read. Congrats to you guys!




Congratulations to the beautiful couple. The wedding was GORGEOUS!


What a gorgeous wedding! Your post seriously made me tear up! Congrats to you and yours 🙂


It looks like it was an absolutely beautiful and perfect day! Congratulations to all of you!

Looks like a beautiful wedding!! Congratulations! And the pictures are stunning. 🙂

kelli- AdventurezInChildRearing

what a great job she did with wedding plans – love the lemon & navy – brides maids dresses that people will actually WANT to wear again – simple and elegant! wish I could have adjusted the heat for ya! (I put in that request) 🙂

Ellen, the Bluestocking Belle

Everything was just gorgeous. What blessings galore!


Congratulations on having a new “daughter”.

There were so many cute touches at the wedding. The mason jars filled with lemons is something I had not seen before, loved the ring and the sparklers were great. How did everyone manage to light their sparklers at the same time? Your brooch is beautiful, too.