Originally imagining a summer campout weekend-long celebration with many of our family and friends, we quickly realized that we just wanted to get married and didn’t really want to think about too much else. Within 24 hours of that realization, we already had most of our plans ready for a wedding that was now only one month away.
Photography by Keana Parker
Arriving together at Big River State Park in Mendocino, CA.
Maurice preparing for the ceremony with sage, an abalone shell, and his owl wing.
We looked in to each other’s eyes for the entire ceremony, which was the most important thing for me. We also slowly turned around within the circle so that we were never entirely blocking out any family members. Maurice’s mom was our officiant and read the Apache Wedding Blessing:
Now you will feel no rain, for each of you will be the shelter for each other. Now you will feel no cold, for each of you will be the warmth for the other. Now you are two persons, but there is only one life before. Go now to your dwelling place to enter into the days of your life together. And may your days be good and long upon the earth.
Treat yourselves and each other with respect, and remind yourselves often of what brought you together. Give the highest priority to the tenderness, gentleness and kindness that your connection deserves. When frustration, difficulty and fear assail your relationship – as they threaten all relationships at one time or another – remember to focus on what is right between you, not only the part which seems wrong. In this way, you can ride out the storms when clouds hide the face of the sun in your lives – remembering that even if you lose sight of it for a moment, the sun is still there. And if each of you takes responsibility for the quality of your life together, it will be marked by abundance and delight.
The exchanging of rings, which also turned out to be incredibly special, as we each inherited a family ring.
The moment was even more special than I thought possible. This kind of love and commitment was and still is an incredible feeling. I loved that we got to just embrace right after the ceremony, without the thought of having to walk back up an aisle or anything like that (; The family then joined in for a big ol’ hug.
Elated Maurice with the most fitting, delicious, and organic proseco (sparkling wine), Tiamo. We brought out a case to the beach and enjoyed impromptu toasting right after the wedding ceremony.
From the beach we ran back to our home and took a few portraits in our front yard in the redwoods, and then on the bluffs north of Fort Bragg. Ruby, our big pup, got to join in on all the celebrations.
We met back with our family at the Beachcomber where they were staying for the weekend, which is situated on the bluffs over looking the ocean; a gorgeous area with great service and not one complaint from anyone. Los Gallitos was all ready for us with their taco cart, and we ate a delicious dinner on the back patio of the hotel. We also served our favorite local beer, Eye of the Hawk, from Mendocino Brewing Company, and used compostable dinnerware.
My aunt and uncle thought it would be fun to bring along some sparklers for us to play with, and it was (:
We got really lucky, with not just the fact that much of our family could make it out with such short notice, but also my dear friend Keana Parker was available to be our photographer.
Other odds and ends that some people might enjoy about our wedding:
Both of our outfits, from our heads to our feet (besides my hat and his jacket which we already owned), together cost us less than the cost of a typical wedding dress. We got to buy new, well-made clothing that we continue to wear and enjoy. Oh yeah, I also never fully tried on my outfit until I got dressed for the wedding… I just knew it would all work out and I’d be comfortable and purple, the two essential elements for me.
His shirt and jacket: Pendleton, wool, made in the USA
His hat: Goorin Brothers, bought in store in San Francisco, CA
His boots: Doc Martens
His jeans: thrift store
My top: MahaDevi design, sustainably made clothing, based in Squamish, British Columbia
My purple lace skirt pants (which come in ivory & other colors) : Om Gaia Tree, based in Santa Cruz, CA
Ruby’s red bandana: found on the beach that day at our wedding