Kelly + Frances Matthews
Frances and her husband Kelly found my work via Instagram( you can give them a follow Frances + Kelly ), Both of us residing in two different states, Frances and I happened to be visiting the same state to visit and had pictures taken in the same location at different times. I was visiting in travels for a wedding and she found my post! I laugh at how good God is every time, just minutes before I uttered I wish I had more traveling weddings and BOOM. I am so thankful. Frances your spontaneity and trust to hire a photographer in another state still amazes me. Francis , Kelly and her beautiful family welcomed me with opened arms, inviting me to tacos the night before, Thank you. I will never forget these memories and I hope you enjoy every minute of this sweet intimate backyard wedding in the far far away land of Virginia haha, every minute of the 18 hours was totally worth it! Enjoy!
Frances, What Do You Remember About Your Wedding Day?
Somehow, we managed to choose the most humid, boiling hot, Virginia-summer day for our wedding. Thankfully, my dress was backless, because goodness, it was toasty! We got married under the trees in my parents’ backyard, the house where I basically grew up. Kelly and I didn’t do a first look or anything, so that moment at the top of our makeshift aisle, making eye contact with him through my veil, was indescribable. My dad had to keep telling me to walk slower. I’m pretty sure I just wanted to run to my almost-husband though. I mean, who wouldn’t?? He looked stunning. I was a barefoot bride, much to my momma’s chagrin, and I wore a dress handmade by my Nema, who just happened to make wedding dresses her whole adult life. My uncle performed the ceremony. We both wrote our own vows. Mine were dreadfully long; his were short and VERY sweet.
I think the most special part for me was serving all our guests their meal. We wanted our first day as married folk to reflect Christ’s love for His bride, following His example of service. It also ended up being a great opportunity to greet each guest and thank them for coming.
What are some things you have learned having your wedding and what advice would you give to another bride looking for wedding advice?
It’s totally possible to plan a wedding in 5 months. (I’m still amazed we pulled that one off.)
You don’t have to please everyone. In reality, it’s impossible. Just pick your battles, and discern when to hold tightly and when to loosen the reigns.
INVEST in an amazing photographer whose style you adore. ( *cough* like Monica *cough*) The photos are going to last for ages, for generations. (I still look through my wedding photos and cry a little bit because I’m an emotional wreck the majority of the time.)
It’s YOUR DAY. If you want donuts instead of a traditional cake, do it. If you want to have a potluck instead of catering, do it. If you want a mobile coffee cart instead of an open bar, do it.
Be gentle with yourself. At the end of the day, you’ll still be married to your best friend.
MOST IMPORTANTLY, get someone to emcee your wedding, someone to guide your guests and help with transitions. I think that’s my biggest regret from the day.
Also what have you learned being married for over 10 months now? what advice would you give to a couple prepping for marriage and single wanting to be married?
I still can’t believe it’s almost been a year! I think the biggest area of growth for Kelly and I both has been trusting God in the midst of uncertainty. My husband has been the greatest gift to me, as he always reminds me to make decisions out of peace rather than panic. He really challenges my habits and refuses to let me become stagnant or consumed by worry.
If you’re prepping for marriage, I’d say really invest in the people who are coming alongside you. The relationship between you and your spouse is SO important. But it’s also important that you don’t isolate yourselves during this process and get lost in all the planning and having the “perfect” day.
I think the same is true if you’re single. Use this time to build your crew. Love your friends and family well. Learn how you feel the most loved. I’m realizing how important it is to invest in community and to have people you can really trust.
what is your favorite meal you two have had as a married couple?
One of these days, I’m going to make a cookbook including all the cheap (DELICIOUS) meals I’ve made in this first (almost) year of marriage. I make these chicken tacos that are everything good in the world, though. I’d give you a recipe if I had it written down. My momma taught me how to cook, and we never measure anything. But seriously, keep your eyes open for that cookbook, because it WILL happen.