Tag Archives: wedding

12-12-15

It is our big day! Yeah!

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And the day that we have waited, finally arrived. The intense feeling of varied emotions was there and it’s overwhelming. Thirty minutes before 10:00 AM I could still see busy folks: OTD coordinators preparing the aisle, photographers eyeing for a perfect spot, florist arranging the flowers and the event organizer finalizing the order of the entourage. There was a delight on my face seeing how meticulous and critical they are on their individual task.

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At exactly 10:00, the ceremony started, but I don’t see my soon to be wife just yet. I was a little early in the church as per tradition and I was there very much prepared to take my walk to the altar. When the music started, the processional march also went next. Before I took several steps onward, I glimpsed at the back searching for the bride and yet there’s no trace of her as the church’s main door was close.I knew there’s a drama behind the idea of close doors. This might give my wife a grand entrance and on my part, a thrilling and exciting experience while waiting.Yes, it did. Standing on the groom spot, anticipating for the bride is one of the most exhilarating feelings any man can have. It feels like a mix of different emotions is fighting inside you. Surreal and simply unexplainable, I think that’s the word. When the door finally opened that’s the moment my wife came in, walking to the tune of Sara Bareilles “I choose you” which my cousin had wonderfully sang.

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My wife and the wedding singer (Jan Irene Valenzuela)

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My wife and our event Manager ( Mely Olleres)

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My middle school best buddies together with Jomer Concepcion(the guy in red), our host.

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The reception…

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The foods…

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native crabs from Catanduanes

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and shrimps too…

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The personalized photo-booth

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ai and john

Beautiful and Magical! That’s all I can say and that justify all the hard work we’ve done all throughout the event process. But I knew that there’s more important than the aesthetic or the beautiful outcome of our wedding and it is the idea of union on where I already found someone whom I can be with for the rest of my life. I believe, above all things, this is what really matters.

The Behind the scenes…

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The powerful team behind our wedding

This piece is written so we can inspire partners who wish to tie the knot, partners who view marrying in the church as a daunting process. Yes, it is but a little courage can help to combat it. Back in the time when my wife and I were on the planning stage, all we have is doubt if we can make it or should I say if we can afford it. However, with the positivity and ingenuity that we have we were able to hurdle the barriers.

I have mentioned on my past blog that our wedding would be practical and solemn. Thankfully, we had attained this plan and we did save a lot. Having a very tight budget, we were challenged on how to still make it beautiful and memorable. Good thing we opened ourselves to some peculiar and offbeat concepts and also embraced the idea of getting really involved in the preparation. Our wedding is an experiment and it was purely amateur. But it doesn’t look like one. Thanks to the many people who collaborated with us, those folks who really has genuine hearts and creative souls.

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The team behind our wedding

Well, it is high time for us to say thank you to many people for making our special event really unforgettable. First off, we are so grateful for our parents, godparents and relatives who made everything easy, for the task and the hassle of self-catering, for the logistics and even moral support.

We also want to say utmost thanks to those who offered their talents as a gift. To the wedding host who is my high school best buddy, to the wedding singer with an angelic voice who happens to be my first cousin, to the Pattisier work-friend who baked our wedding cake, to the quintessential shutterbug who captured the perfect moments on her lens, to the team who managed the event coordination in the church up to the reception. In the event specialist who is my partner at work and to the OTD event coordinators who busied themselves attending even to the minutest details so we can have a smooth sailing program and last but not the least, to the chef manager who administered the kitchen, the one that made the food as sumptuous as first-rate menu in high end restaurants. She happens to be our Ninang and that we’re very lucky and honored.

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The team behind our wedding

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Thanks also to venue set-up specialist (Fernando and Mary Ann Catering services) and their crew for the amazing outdoor set up and for their kindness and understanding during the planning stage. Also to the venue itself, the Esquivel Garden and Resort for not being so strict as they let us do whatever we wish with regard to our event plan. Thanks for the reasonable price and also for the generosity. We also don’t want to forget the kind words of the bridal car owner amid some glitches he had observed, his voluntary assistance and the cheap price of his vehicle. Ooops, I forgot! Thank you, too, Angel of Excess salon for the hair and make up of my wife.

Hell yeah! We really had a blast last 12-12-15. Yes, there were some glitches however, they were obscure that only the two of us and other coordinators took heed. And we won’t be telling you, it’s our secret. Hehehe.

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The road to forever…

Many are asking about why I call my girlfriend of seven years as “wife” where in fact, we are not yet married in a church, not even submitted ourselves to a civil ceremony yet. Well, not many of our friends know that for three years already we have been in a live-in relationship set up. For practicality reasons, both of us agreed that this idea of sensibly living together can make us a better tandem. For a while though, we grappled with the so called adjustment period wherein the two of us, from time to time, wish to go back to being unattached after some misunderstandings that inevitably come our way. But for such a span of time, we had already outgrown each of our immaturities, learned how to bend with our mood swings and instinctively grasped each other’s emotional needs.

A " GRETCHEN ADUL" photography

A ” GRETCHEN ADUL” photography

Being in this stage, of having to live with someone who you thought can be a companion for the rest of your life, realistically prepares the both of us into a much more complex pact called marriage. Our three years of companionship showed a wider picture on where we are heading as an amateur couple. And thus we decided to pursue what’s next and make everything legal and outright in the eyes of God and other people.

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We understood that we are coming from an ordinary family and that we can’t get any monetary support if in case we plan of having ourselves wed in the church. Thus, for those three years, we patiently saved a small chunk of our earnings every payday for us to pull out a decent wedding, our dream wedding. Simple, solemn and as my partner call it, magical. Yes, she dreamed of walking down the aisle with the soloist singing our favorite song. It is her dream and I’m bound to make it happen… with lesser cost.

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January of last year we started on our plan and by that time I started taking extra workloads and slowed down a bit after finally hitting the target. Budgeted weddings, I believe, need an ample time of planning and earning. As much as possible, we want to spend less and spend only on the things that really matter. The big challenge is to make it memorable and beautiful with a very tight budget and how are we going to do that was the big question.

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I believe that both of us are having the ingenuity and the skill to make everything happen. On my part, having so many creative and talented friends who are very much willing to rally and offer support, becomes a blessing in disguise. Well, we need not hire a professional singer/soloist to sing at our wedding. A cousin who does some gigs as a hobby generously crossed out her timetable for us. A best friend who had just launched her pastry business volunteered to bake our wedding cake, not to mention the super friendly price. My guy best buddy from the middle school that has the gift of gab would be our event host. A quintessential shutterbug, who considers our wedding as her debut in the business of photography, painstakingly got the best shots out of our crazy face during our pre-nup session and hopefully more of it on our wedding day. And last but not the least, our event organizer who happens to be my partner at work and my confidante as well, who made our life easier starting from the planning stage, to envisioning our dream wedding theme and in dealing with other wedding suppliers.

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And on my fiancée’s part, having the skill on budgeting that resorted her to make as many “DIY” she can think of for our wedding reception, helped her visualize the semi-rustic theme she wants on our big day. She ordered me and my younger siblings to do some carpentry for the wooden signposts and little chalkboards. She also made some bottles with candles to hang on trees since we are having an outdoor reception and some other props which I believe were done artistically.

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Well, that doesn’t end with that. Part of the biggest chunk of the budget should go for the food and that’s reasonable as you don’t want your visitors to enjoy the beauty of the reception while starving because of the insufficient or distasteful menu you have prepared or the caterer has prepared. Because of the financial realities at hand, my partner and I can’t turn a blind eye on the menu lists and packages offered by the wedding suppliers we have talked to. Aside from the truth that the price hurts, both of us don’t buy the idea of having a high end menu as our visitors are the plain and simple folks who like classic Filipino foods served during fiestas.  So we agreed to the idea of self-catering our wedding and hire a specialist for the wedding set up instead, which would be responsible for overall venue arrangements. My uncle, my mother and our future “Ninang” would do the cooking as they are good at it. And not to stress them with hassle of the task, we told them to delegate it to some idle relatives and just supervise when that special day comes.

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We also don’t plan to buy hog meat in the market. We bought piglets instead and let a relative took care of it and paid them with piglets too for the effort. Now, they are ready for the big day. It really helped us save a lot. Thanks for the bizarre ideas.

We also don’t want to go overboard or allot big budget for the wedding invitations. We have 8 pairs of principal sponsors and some of them are partners in real life while for the other members of the entourage are my brothers and my partner’s sisters. Principal sponsors are the ones to be given the invitation for our siblings live with us and others live nearby. They are one text away. We also have “fruit infused vinegar” for our token to the principal sponsors. It is something unique and not used often for wedding giveaways. Hopefully they will appreciate it amid the cheap price. It’s the thought that counts, anyway. However, we gave in to the idea of having a photo booth for our visitors since we treasure moments captured on the lens. The price hurts our pockets, though.

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We owe a debt of gratitude to those generous sponsors who never had second thoughts of providing us what we need. Big thanks to my wife’s sister who gifted us our wedding band, a big deduction on our expenses. Thanks also to my aunt and uncle who lent us the bridesmaids’ dresses. We are also grateful to the bridesmaids who are fine with the idea of shouldering the make- up costs and same to the groomsmen who are okay to spend on rentals for the tux. However, we are not final yet on the bridal car we are going to rent. It’s a bit pricey for a short time service. Same with the fresh flowers for the church’s aisle, still we can’t decide with our vendor’s package. Some say that it is already cheap and reasonable, but for us the price is still steep. Spell CHEAPSKATE. Hahaha. Anyway, there might be some generous sponsors who are willing to share their car might as well with the flowers. We’d be very delighted to accommodate it. Hehehe.

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Our wedding is 888 hours to go as of this writing. We envisioned a private, simple and solemn gathering. We have been successful by keeping it secret with our respective workmates as we don’t want some people whining why they are not invited. But hey, I’m making it public today. Still, I want our dear family and relatives, close friends, cherished classmates and some few chosen guests to witness our event as they are the people that matters to us. It is very select, I must say.

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We knew that come our wedding day, there will be a glitch to remember and that’s part of the experience. We’ll be glad to have a hearty laugh at it, anyway.


Tying the Knot: of Responsibility and Relationship

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For about a year now, my girlfriend and I decided to live under one roof. It was a mutual decision coming from two responsible adults. Being in a five year old relationship we believed our move to be appropriate then. But prior that, the two of us were both independent souls, who like many others coming from a province, had braved leaving the comforts of home to basically try life in the metropolis.

August last year, we divulged our relationship set-up with our parents. Of course, we got reprimanded of our actions. We heard a litany of morals and lessons about married life. Talking to my Girlfriend’s father was for me, the most daunting task a boyfriend should face.

I remember myself hiding the fear when I spoke face to face with my future father in-law. He’s a man of few words yet he has this firm stance on certain subjects which I never intend to oppose with. With an utmost sincerity, I laid my plans for her daughter and my future family, which, thankfully, he found as honest and sensible one. Thus, in the end, I won his trust and consent to continue the relationship set-up her daughter and I had started.

This year is the year I ought to bring my fiancée to the altar. It is a promise that I want to fulfill. For one year of being together as live-in partners I believe that we’ve had enough as an amateur couple. We’ve seen the best and the worst part of being in this stage, making us prepared of what’s more to come as husband and wife.

There are many instances that can prove how ready we are on trailing this path. One: We’ve already played the role of father and mother when our siblings came to live with us. We are the onlookers who stay on guard for their needs and safety. Two: We’ve come to know the importance of money, especially on how to spend it with enough prudence. Since both of us are breadwinners who still support each of our families, we both learned the value of frugality and Three: We knew what things to sacrifice. If before we can stay late jamming with friends, now we can’t. It should be family first.

Last January I started taking overtime work so I can earn ahead of time since we’re planning to have our wedding sometime in December. I want our wedding to be simple and intimate, simply because I can’t afford an extravagant one. I am even looking for sponsors and friends who can share their time and service for free (evil laugh). Of course, I should be the one shouldering the expenses since I can’t rely on anyone. I still have time left for the hard work and I hope I can meet the target. Fingers crossed!

Anyway, I always bear in mind the constant reminder coming from my mother that marriage is not comparable to eating rice that you can spit out the moment you realize it’s hot and that it is not  also just a word but a sentence, a life sentence, perhaps.

Well, I must agree as we’ve already come a long way and there’s really no turning back.