And with that, wedding season has come to a close.

This spring/summer has been very wedding-centric for we two, but alas it has come to a close (at least until September), and we made a point to go out with a bang. For the season finale, we attended the nuptials of Dan and Destiny who paired traditional elements with some pretty off-the-wall ones. I thought I had seen the coup de grâce of wacky wedding fare after Eric and Lisa tied the knot last September; their big day featured a midnight snack of breakfast tacos, a venue named after a haircut, multiple live music performances and iPod parting gifts. This event didn’t incorporate those elements, but there was badminton, snow cones and a wedding reception held at a swimming hole.

The Town
D & D got hitched on her family’s land out in Ingram, Texas (which is near Kerville, which is near nothing). The location is one Destiny had always singled out as her future wedding day destination long before Dan even came into the picture. Lucky for Dan (and for us), she chose well. Ingram was a treat to behold.

Getting to Ingram from Austin entails a 3-hour drive though some of Texas’ smaller towns, but it’s a pretty one that winds through Texas’ version of wine country and passes through historical landmarks, like Johnson City (birthplace of LBJ). So getting to the wedding festivities was actually half the fun.

The Ceremony
Dan and Destiny, or Danstiny as I shall call them for the remainder of this post, were lucky to have family with astonishingly beautiful hill country property. But getting all the guests from their respective lodging accommodations to a hilltop located smack dab in the middle of a 700 acre sprawl is not an easy feat. Guests met at a bunk house located at the foot of the hill and were then transported via limousine party bus to the ceremony site. The drive was windy and rugged, and with zebra and deer roaming the country side to the left and right of the bus, the whole event seemed more the stuff of an African safari than a Texas girl’s wedding. The combination of Beyonce songs being blasted from limousine speakers along with sightings of families of deer made for an interesting juxtaposition.

The hilltop where the couple said “I do” was remarkable and benefited from a breeze that kept guests from sweating through their britches. The couple wrote their own vows and kept the whole affair short and sweet.

The Reception
After the ceremony, guests were shuttled to the family swimming hole. And though her family titled it as such, the spot was less like a “hole” (which made me expect to find a muddy mess that perhaps was once a lake, but in these times of drought would more closely resemble a puddle) and more like the private swimming quarters of Texas royalty. Beautiful stonework surrounded a pristine blue pool that overlooked garden lights, green lawn and beautiful native terrain.

The couple were received with splashes of lavender seeds which sent an aroma through the air that lingered throughout the reception, and they celebrated with Texas BBQ and hill country wine. Wedding cake flavored snow cones were served to children and jars of homemade jellies and preserves were passed out to guests as they arrived (Heath and I snatched some Apple Butter to enjoy at home). Those who wanted to, swam, and those who preferred to stay dry hung out in the biergarten where Danstiny had arranged to entertain friends and family with a bean bag toss, card games, Chinese Checkers and badminton (which allowed Heath to say the word “shuttlecock” more times than I would have preferred).

The affair was personal and romantic and perfectly picturesque.  I will remember it fondly and file it away as one of the more unique and inspiring celebrations of love I have been privileged to witness.

Fare thee well spring wedding season, and onward with summer vacation!


Holly gets hitched!

It’s rare that I would write 2 wedding-related posts in a week, but our lives have been pretty matrimonial as of late. So far this year we have been invited to:

-4 weddings (with 3 more still to come)
-6 wedding showers
-4 bachelorette parties.

Apparently ’tis the season. This weekend at least was the last of our Denton weddings until September, but we went out with a bang–celebrating the union of Ryan to Holly, Heath’s youngest sister.

Family weddings are usually special in their own merit, but this one was particularly meaningful because we both had a part in it: Heath walked the bride down the aisle and I got yet another chance to play photographer. Hooray for being useful!

We were thrilled to send Ryan and Holly off in style, but I’m definitely looking forward to a few weekends spent at home with the doodles rather than traveling up and down the I-35 corridor.

Congrats to Ryan and Holly! Thanks for letting my camera crash your big day!


Happy Blogiversary!

Today marks two years of blogging from the doodle house!

Documenting our lives and sharing the things that have entertained and inspired us has been tremendously rewarding. The blog has been a place where I can be creative and goofy and honest, and I’m so happy to have found such joy in this little hobby.

Some highlights of what we’ve done and seen in the last two years…

We added chickens to our family….

And we took some chickens away…

We got married!

And honeymooned…

We got our feet wet with gardening…

We bought a new house!

We traveled…

And traveled…

And traveled a little more…

It’s been a thoroughly eventful two years. There’s no telling what the next two will hold.


A truly Texas wedding

I’ve posted briefly about my beautiful friend Courtney’s pre-wedding festivities, but I’d really be doing a disservice by not gushing about the big day itself, as it was the epitome of a truly Texas wedding*.

*To all my non-Texans, let me explain that by a “Texas Wedding” I do not mean that the aisles were filled with Southern ladies with big hair or that men were shooting pistols in the air when the bride and groom said “I do.” She didn’t ride a horse down the aisle or have a Dallas Cowboys themed wedding cake. When I say Texas wedding, I mean it highlighted all the things I love about being from Texas: a picturesque countryside, warm weather, greasy grub, and pride in your family’s roots and rituals. 

From the minute Courtney and David got engaged, Courtney knew the only place she could see herself getting married was in her parents’ backyard. They live on a couple acres of rolling green prairie a few miles outside of our hometown of Denton. I squealed when Courtney told me. In Denton, there are few places prettier than Courtney’s house, and no place more fitting for the strawberry blonde tomboy-turned-tender to tie the knot.

The day she and David became betrothed was indubitably perfect. The breeze was strong enough that it cooled the air and kept mosquitos at bay, but not so strong that it blew our carefully crafted coifs off kilter. A string quartet played traditional wedding hymns as she descended the aisle, and two matching flower girls led the way, leaving silky white rose petals in their path. Truthfully, the ceremony was so perfectly put together, it felt almost like I had been cast in a David’s Bridal commercial. How could a ceremony really be that serene?

Photo by Kelly Kate Photography

As is customary, a reception followed. Courtney’s was beneath a tent, its ceiling festively adorned with lights. The sun set behind them as they shared their first dance, and then guests celebrated with frozen margaritas, beer and barbecue. When it came time to dance, the groomsmen loosened their ties while the the bridesmaids traded their heels for sparkly Tom’s gifted to us by the bride. At the end of the night the bride and groom boarded a limo and rode together to their new home.

Photo by Kelly Kate Photography

On paper, the wedding was very traditional, and I think that’s why I loved it so. Texans are big on tradition and keeping things at a certain status quo, which usually jerks my chain, but not today.

When I got married, there were particular elements I knew I wanted or didn’t want based on what was considered “customary” wedding fair. I made a stink about not wanting a lingerie shower and opted to forgo a bouquet toss in favor of more dance time. I knew I wanted to walk myself down the aisle and I banned country music from being played at my reception. I prided myself on being what I thought was a quirky, outside-the-box, not your average-old-everyday-bride.

But Courtney and David’s wedding made me see “traditional” doesn’t always equal cliche. Their wedding felt truly genuine. Though following old traditions can sometimes feel tired or trite, there’s a place for things that have been handed down. There’s value in reliving the same customs as your mother, grandmother, and so on. It’s not about copying what’s been done before or following a pre-determined path of what’s expected or appropriate. Traditions become traditions for a reason; they can pay tribute while being personal and be inventive while following suit. Sure, cake cuttings and champagne toasts have been done before, but who really wants to toast with fresca and cut into wedding casserole anyway?

The bride with Leah and me…a tight-knit trio of gal pals for 10 years.

Cheers to Courtney and David!


Rachel getting married

Rachel and Jared, two  roommates who turned lovahs, got married this weekend and celebrated with a charming backyard wedding in East Austin. The decked out dance hall, hand-built pergolas and Whole Foods catering acted as the perfect backdrop for the tandem bike riding couple who wanted to celebrate intimately with close friends but in classic Austin style.


Married @ the Mohawk

Check out these amazing photos by Jake Holt from Eric and Lisa’s wedding two weeks ago at The Mohawk. Definitely an unforgettable evening.

 


Pretty, cool

I realize this is not a wedding blog, but it is a blog where I share certain unique and thrilling aspect of life at the doodle house, and today we got a very interesting piece of mail: Eric and Lisa’s wedding invitation.

These two music lovers took their appetite for vintage records and vibrant art and applied it to their wedding invitation. It’s super cool AND it features photos taken by moi.

20110706-071950.jpg

20110706-072029.jpg

20110706-072041.jpg

20110706-072056.jpg