We’re sharing Rachel and Chris’s Elegant Nashville Tennessee Wedding with you today! The Collection captured the love they have for each other on their Wedding Day!
Meet Rachel and Chris!!
How did you meet?
We met our freshman year of college in Biology lab. We were both late coming in and the last two seats we took made us lab partners for the rest of the semester. This obviously gave us lots of time to talk, and we quickly learned that we lived on brother-sister floors in the dorm. Over that semester we began hanging out more and more, and by February, Chris had invited me to the formal ball in Chicago that was put on by our college. It was a lovely time, and let us see a different side of each other that we didn’t get to see in the lab. From the beginning we were a pair; at first it was just science, but we quickly bonded over our shared love for Jesus, nature, and chocolate!
Tell us your proposal story!
I (Chris) picked Rachel up around 6PM for what she believed to be a normal dinner date. I did not tell her where we were going as I drove, but she became suspicious when I pulled into Catigny Park in a suburb of Chicago. Her suspicion and frustration grew as I walked her through the gardens because she was hungry and had been anticipating dinner. But to her surprise, we rounded a corner of the garden and before us was a blanket adorned with flowers, plates, and a woven picnic basket. As we approached the picnic I pointed out a small white box resting on the lid of the basket and asked her what she thought it was. She nervously lifted the box and removed then lid and her jaw dropped. Her face quickly changed from nervousness and excitement to confusion. Inside the box lay a small wheel and a screw. I had purchased the parts to repair a broken door in her apartment and had placed them in the small jewelry box. Before she recovered from the shock and became upset at my sense of humor I knelt down on one knee and pulled the real ring out of my pocket and asked her to marry me. Of course she said yes! And we spent the evening enjoying the meal I had made, talking about memories, and planning for what was to come.
What was the inspiration behind your wedding?
Growing up in the south, I have always loved the elegance of old southern antebellum homes, as well as the simple and whimsical feel of the country and the outdoors. We both love nature and wanted its beauty to be a part of our wedding day. When we found Cedarwood, we fell in love with the big white house, the beautiful gardens, and the rolling hills that surrounded them. They were a reminder of God’s beauty and his handiwork, which we wanted to be reflected in our wedding and our marriage. We had thought about having our ceremony in a church, but when we saw the grounds and were able to picture the cross as the altar on the hills with the sun setting behind us, we knew it was perfect. We wanted the day to not only be a celebration of our commitment to each other, but also a day of thanksgiving and worship to God and we could not think of a better setting to do this.
What was your favorite part of your wedding day?
Chris and I both agree that one of the best parts of our wedding day was having so many family members and friends together in one place. They had come from all over the country- and the world- to celebrate and support us that day. We had a lot of fun dancing and talking together; we made some great memories that will last for many years to come. Each of them had been a part of different times in our lives and were special to us in different ways. It was so neat to see them all come together, supporting us, praying for us, and cheering us on. In a time where commitment to marriage is becoming harder to stand by, it was humbling to have so many people who believe in us and our future together.
What is one piece of wedding planning advice you have for our readers?
Don’t sweat the small stuff! There are so many decisions to make, but no matter what you decide, the day is going to be beautiful, you are going to walk down the aisle as married couple, and the sun is going to rise the next morning. Whether you’ve had the whole day planned out in your mind since middle school, or you’re making decisions on the fly, there will be things that require lots of deliberation. However, there should also be decisions you think about once and then move on. Look for places you can simplify and leave more time for making memories in the areas that really matter. Also, in the hustle and bustle of planning for the big day, don’t forget to prepare yourself for the next day – and the day after that and the years to follow. You’ll spend so much time preparing for your wedding, but save some time to prepare for your marriage. Keep building your relationship with your future spouse. You don’t want the wedding planning to drive you apart, but rather to bring you even closer together and more excited for your future together.
How has marriage made you grow as a person and/or couple?
While we have lots of fun being married and often getting along is easy, this isn’t always the case – like when he leaves the milk out on the counter all day or when I wash the dog blanket with our white sheets leaving them full of black, annoying fur. In these situations, we have had to learn to eat our pride and forgive each other. We can’t just say goodnight and go back to our own houses anymore. The challenge has become how soon after a disagreement that we actually step up and admit we’ve done wrong. Often we sit in silence, resolving in our heads not to say something until the other one does. Obviously this goes nowhere. We have learned that each of us must take the initiative instead of waiting for the other person to make the first steps in resolving the conflict. This takes humility and certainly isn’t our first inclination, but despite our feelings at the time, being angry isn’t very fun and tends to make everything else sour. We can’t be content to be angry and to blame the other for our unhappiness. We have to be the first to say I am sorry and make steps to fix the situation, even when we don’t feel at fault. This isn’t easy or in our nature, but when we do so, we are putting the needs of the other person first and often end up happier in the end, even if it took some time and some swallowed pride.