The best part of my job is the people. I have the greatest couples, and documenting their story is the best because it’s unfolding along the way. Parts of it are already there, but much of it happens “live” and in the moment. This is especially true of wedding days. And, as far as wedding days are concerned, JoDee & Mike had an amazing one.
You may remember them from their super great cooking themed engagement session. (Mike is the Sous chef at Lucia. If you are in the Dallas area, you should go eat his food.)
These two decided to get married at the Inn at BK Ranch just outside of Palestine, TX. It’s a gorgeous location and perfect for a weekend of wedding fun and goodness.
When I first encountered JoDee on her big day, she was doing what every sensible bride does on a Sunday: picking the winner of NFL games.
(Her mother and sister were also making their picks with input from JoDee’s Grandmother.)
Speaking of her Grandmother: JoDee wore her earrings because she is super sweet like that. And TOMS because she is super sensible like that.
I adore the faces brides make when they are getting their dress synched up in the back. Always the best.
Some First Look magic.
Wait… what… no bouquet?
Why no flowers JoDee?
“No particular reason besides I just find them silly. Like really. Stop and think about it. Why would anyone hold flowers… I don’t even own a purse; let’s just say I’m not a fan of carrying things about. So I opted for the flower crown.”
Works for me. :)
So it started to drizzle at this point. So I said to JoDee, “Do we want to head inside or go ahead and knock out the wedding party photos?”
JoDee looked at me like I was a crazy person and said, “It’s just a little rain, we’ll be fine.”
629 Cool Bride Points earned.
Hey look everyone. Beautiful people, in a beautiful place, wearing beautiful clothing.
JoDee’s dog decided picture time was over.
About an hour before the ceremony time, it became clear that the rain was not going to pass over. I’ve seen this scenario unfold dozens of times: the will it rain/it won’t rain/please don’t rain/oh crap it’s raining dance that everyone does around the bride. As people tiptoe around the subject ,they try to ask her what to do or what she wants done on her most special day in the history of days.
This was no different. People went to JoDee to find out what she wanted to do and she started thinking through options and opinions. I found Mike and asked him if he wanted to go talk with JoDee and come up with a plan and he said, “Just do whatever she says.”
The thing is, it was not like a typical dude, just deferring to “whatever she wants; it’s her day.”
It was more like:
She is capable.
She knows what to do.
I trust her.
Well the more people asked, the more it became an issue JoDee did NOT want to deal with. So, she passed the decision back to Mike.
Then, as soon as it was in Mike’s court, he took it and ran with it. We are moving it inside. The rain is coming, so let’s get ready.
And just like that, without even realizing it, they did it.
They did one of the hardest things in marriage.
They faced a problem, tossed it around a bit, and then solved it by leaning on and trusting each other’s strengths and weaknesses.
Mike COULD have made the decision all along. Yet he was wise enough to respect and love JoDee enough to let the decision be her’s. When JoDee felt the burden of it become too much, she handed it off to Mike, trusting in him to work it out.
Talking through, juggling, and working out difficult decisions are what make marriages stick. These two put on a clinic on how to do it 30 minutes before they were married.
Well, eventually the rains came. In fact, it started to pour. All their friends jumped right in and started moving tables and place settings inside and up stairs. The rain had come and it was here to stay. The outdoor wedding had become an indoor event. A soggy indoor event. But no one seemed to mind. We were all making the best of it and they were still going to get married.
Then something interesting happened. The clouds parted. (Well, more like it stopped raining.) For a moment, we were golden. We all ran outside and decided to try and do this thing as planned.
Here comes the bride.
Mike’s father performed the ceremony. And being a basketball official back in the day, he even surprised them with a little wardrobe change.
Then it started raining. Again. Right in the middle of their ceremony.
Someone tried to give JoDee and umbrella, but she refused it. I later asked her why and she said, “If the guests were willing to get wet, so was I.”
821 Cool Bride points earned.
Turns out, rainy wedding days are a bit of a tradition in Mike’s family. Both Mike’s siblings had rain at their wedding. A massive storm blew through the morning of his brother’s wedding and Hurricane Ike caused a ruckus for his sister’s big day.
Eventually the party moved inside. (Sans table linens.)
The rest of the afternoon was spent full of laughter, memories, and toasts from family. Toasts that included a signed photo from Tony Romo. (Although the signature did resemble Mike’s brother’s handwriting.)
Also, who doesn’t love the Mug Machine?
Fun Fact: Dude in the jacket in the lower left, split his pants bending over for the photo.
One million thank you’s to you two for letting me share in your day.
Thanks for trusting me with it.
Thanks for braving the rain.
Thanks for showing me how marriage is supposed to work.