Sunday, September 14, 2014

I've known Brian McGuire, DJ, of McSound Productions for more than 10 years. He is a constant in the wedding industry and is well respected for his presence and ability to DJ weddings and other events with proficiency and fun. In February of 2008, I officiated the wedding of Bill Smith, DJ with Magic of Music, and his wonderful wife, Sandra. Brian and his girlfriend Tammy were at the wedding. They told me, and it is included in their ceremony as part of their story, that when Brian proposed last November, Tammy said, "So all I have to do is buy a dress and show up, right? You've got this planning thing covered?" To which Brian replied, "If you trust me to plan our wedding, I certainly know all of the vendors that I would like to use." So, they started making calls, got the date set and got every vendor they wanted on the first call. It was meant to be!
The venue that fit them best was the University Club in Durham. Above is the way the room for the ceremony looked when we arrived.
Bill Smith and I did a sound check twice! 
I gave Marty, my assistant, the day off and Dave, my husband, came as my assistant and as my date because we wanted to be at this reception since we would know so many others in the wedding business there.  Meanwhile Dave wandered around and got some photos of the reception area. We are on the 17th floor of a building that overlooks the area of Durham around the 15-501 bypass and Duke. On each table they had a framed good luck symbol and explanation--key, wishing well, bamboo, penny, elephant, etc.
The cake/cupcakes were by Sugarland. Hmm....are there some cupcakes missing already??? Or maybe they have not all been set up.
I located my witnesses and got their signatures on the marriage license. I got Brian's son, Joseph, to sign for me down in the lobby where he and Brian and some guests were hanging out before the ceremony. Then I found the bride hidden away on the 16th floor with her kids, Amber and Cory. Amber is doing her signing.
 Look at these beautiful fabric/ribbon bouquets that Tammy made herself! 
Tammy told me she had seen the bouquets and how much they cost and decided she could do them herself but she did find out in the process of trial and error, she spent more than she expected!
 Tammy also made these wonderful boutonnieres for the guys. 
The guests are all seated and we are ready for the ceremony. Oops, notice something missing?  
I never found out what happened to that one floral arrangements that it needed fixing but I did see Jennifer Ball, our fabulous wedding director taking care of it the bar area then brought it out and put it back on the pedestal. Our florist for the wedding was Flowers by Gary who did these arrangements and the centerpieces. 
The wedding party and parents are hanging out in the bar area that adjoins the ceremony room. Since we did not have a rehearsal, I am giving Brian some last minute instructions since instead of being the DJ at this wedding, he was the groom!
Brian's mother, Deryl, and I hit it off right away because we were both born and raised in Georgia, although she and Brian's father, Mike, now live in Hillsborough. That is Brian's grandmother in the wheelchair. Unfortunately Tammy's mother has passed away but her father was able to travel from Tennessee to be with us. Tammy's mother's sister, her aunt, was also present and Tammy's sister and her husband.
Like father, like son--except for the hair! But then since Brian shaves his head we really don't know!! At any rate, I can tell you that Brian takes after his mother and his son takes after him. Two peas in a pod, "never met a stranger" kind of people!
 Jennifer gives Brian a high-five just before we go in. 
Jennifer Ball is a woman who knows how to get it all done. This is the first wedding we have done together although we have also known each other for years through networking luncheons. After being the event coordinator and rental agent for another venue, Jennifer stepped out on her own and started her own wedding planning business and named it "Knot Your Average Events." In my opinion she could also have named her business "On the Ball Events" very legitimately!! Thanks Jennifer, you did a wonderful job!
Our lead photographer for the wedding was Jen Aun with Halftone Studios, a collaborative subsidiary of Brian Mullins Photography. However, since Brian Mullins just happened to be a guest at this wedding, he could not resist bringing his camera and being Jen's second shooter--a switcheroo from the usual!
 Tammy's daughter and her Maid of Honor, enters. 
 Here comes the bride, escorted by her son, Cory. 
 Cory transfers his mother's hand into Brian's hand and everyone is seated. 
 I can see that Joseph is catching a glance of his grandmother who had her hankie out already! 
After the welcome, remembering the loved ones who are not with us and honoring Brian's parents, I addressed their children telling them how important that they are and that from this day forward they are all one big family.
Then I got to tell the story of how they met nine years ago, their first date, how much Brian enjoys kissing Tammy, eating ice cream to cool down, etc. They were matched up on line but neither was looking for a marriage partner as they were both single parents and their first priority was their kids. But they wanted companionship so they decided to meet in person. At this point in the story I am saying "After they made the date, Brian wrote Tammy a note telling her he had a shaved head and asked if that would bother her. She laughed and told him that it didn't. And it's a good thing or we wouldn't be here today!" The story continued that many years passed and since their kids were all growing up and they were becoming empty-nesters, maybe it was time to re-visit the subject of marriage. Last November, Brian came to the conclusion that he wanted to spend the rest of his life with this amazing woman he loved. So, he proposed and she said yes! And Brian started planning the wedding!
Tammy and Brian wanted to include the Celtic hand-fasting ceremony in their wedding to honor Brian's Irish heritage. So I wrapped the cord around their joined left hands, then they joined right hands forming the sign of infinity as they said their vows to each other which they wrote and read from my book.
 Then they exchanged rings.
A closing blessing and then the explanation of the Jewish custom of breaking of the glass to honor that heritage as well.
 I put the glass at Brian's feet, made the pronouncement and......
 Brian stomped the glass and we all shouted Mazeltov as they kissed! 
 I believe they have been practicing! 
 A little bit more kissing.....
 Here they are, husband and wife at last!
Our DJ for the reception was Brian Pate of Brian Pate Entertainment. Leave it to Brian, our groom, to have two DJs! (And so many Brians at this wedding!)
 So Dave and I were seated at the table with my long time wedding colleague, Tracy Adams with Adams and Events, and her husband Nelson. It was fun getting to know Nelson and not be on "wedding duty" for a nice change.
 Bill and Sandra, still lovebirds, were also at our table! 
Brian surprised us all and especially his new bride by singing to her first thing at the reception. She was overwhelmed! So romantic. It was probably Brian's dream to someday do this at his wedding!
 The song he sang was "Alright" by Darius Rucker. 
I had to email Tammy to get that information. She wrote: "Hopefully at some point in the future, I’ll get to hear it again. I was in such shock that he was doing this I really couldn’t hear the song! I had not even the slightest clue that he had planned anything like that and in 9 years I had never heard him sing although I knew he had been in a band and played drums, and of course sang with them. He was quite proud of himself!" romantic! More kissing...!!!
After a delicious buffet meal, the dancing began and they handed out the glow sticks! Thanks to one of our guests at the table, Barbara, who took this photo so Dave could be in it with me, and Bill and Sandra!
The minute the line dancing began, Tracy was up on the dance floor! They did The Wobble. Looked like a lot of fun but I only know the Electric Slide! Old timer!
 Even the little kids enjoyed it! 
Jen and Brian joined me for a breather. This reception was a lot of fun and expertly put together! After this, Dave and I decided to call it a night, bid all farewell, and drive back to Raleigh.
Brian, you planned a great wedding and I thank you and Tammy for choosing me to officiate. I was honored! You are a great match and I predict you will have a very happy marriage. I wish you the best always! See you around, Brian! 
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