Madison and Michael’s wedding was a beautiful and classic outdoor affair, but more than that, it was made special by the many family traditions that the couple was intentional about including. From the heirloom gifts they gave to each other (his grandfather’s pocket knife and her grandmother’s wedding picture), to the sugar-coated almonds and baklava per the bride’s Egyptian heritage, and even the bride’s excitement to wear bridal henna at her grandfather’s request, the couple knew that they wanted to bring in little bits and pieces of their various traditions to celebrate their day: “It’s sometimes the small things that trigger your memories.”
The way their loved ones gathered around the couple to help them plan their wedding was also very special. The bridesmaids assisted in all the floral design, while Michael’s mother searched the whole city to find one maiden hair fern for Madison’s bouquet. “It was such a special gift to have loved ones play a visible roll in our celebration,” she says.
Read on for more reflections from the bride: “We were married on May 23rd at half past four, on our four and a half year dating anniversary. Clever right? The officiants were three of the pastors that have we have known in different seasons of our lives. My uncle flew from Egypt to be with us on the wedding day and give the sermon. One pastor was from the church where we first met and the other from where we attend now. We chose to have Song of Songs 8:6-8 as our reading:
Place me like a seal over your heart, like a seal on your arm. For love is as strong as death, its jealousy as enduring as the grave. Love flashes like fire, the brightest kind of flame.
Many waters cannot quench love, nor can rivers drown it. If a man tried to buy love with all his wealth, his offer would be utterly scorned.
My favorite moments of the day were simple. After we walked down the aisle, Michael and I walked in the gardens by ourselves and stopped under a tree. That moment seemed to stand in time and in my memory. I loved standing in the dressing room with my bridesmaids looking at them all dressed up! It felt surreal! When everyone was dancing, the dance floor was so crowded that Michael and I danced in the grass together. I was barefoot and my hair was flying everywhere, but it was a perfect moment. We loved that Michael’s groomsmen and my cousin provided live music for our first dance. I loved running out to the car together, tossing my bouquet, and getting to see everyone who had stayed to send us off.”