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Wedding Nails Inspiration

Hi brides! I am super excited to share this blog about wedding nail inspiration. I love seeing inspiration threads on Facebook because it helps to see what real brides are doing. For the same reason, I also love to do inspiration blog posts! It’s an easy way to show you several different options from brides around the world! As a current bride myself, I couldn’t even decide what I wanted to do – why is it such a hard decision?! I ended up just going with French tip because you can’t go wrong with French tip right? Take a look at these and let me know on Facebook which is your favorite! You can find this blog shared onto my page at Mary Taylor Weddings.

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Thanks to all of the amazing brides and photographers for providing these incredible inspiration images!

If this blog helps you to get some inspiration, don’t forget to like me on Facebook at Mary Taylor Weddings and join me in my deals Facebook group Mary Taylor’s Wedding Deals & Finds. And after you’ve decided what you’re going to go with, I would love to see! Feel free to comment a photograph of your wedding nails on this blog post that is shared onto my Facebook page and into my group! Your nail image will help other brides to make their decisions as well <3 It’s all about helping one another! I cannot wait to see you there!

Signing off,

Mary Taylor <3

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Engagement Photos: Questions Answered & Inspiration

This blog contains commissioned links. This means I may earn a small commission for purchases made through the links provided. I cannot see who purchases what and it doesn’t cost you anything!

You’re engaged! Congratulations! Let the fun begin! One of the first things you might want to do is get your engagement photographs taken. Here’s a guide on a few suggestions!

As a current bride and photographer myself, I highly recommend getting your engagement photographs taken. If you have your eye on a specific photographer for your wedding, now is your time to try them out or finally invest in their photography for your special day. Lots of photographers offer engagement sessions as part of their packages in order to get to know their brides and grooms better. If it’s an option, take them up on it! It’s a great excuse to dress up, get updated professional images, and get to know your photographer (their photography and editing style, their personality, and their posing/guiding). 

“Do I really need to get engagement photos? What’s the point?” I actually see this in a lot of posts on Facebook. People want to know if they really HAVE to do them. Often times photographers include free engagement sessions in their packages so why not?! This helps you and your photographer to get to know each other better. It helps you to feel comfortable around them and get a better idea of how they run their business. If you have to pay to add on engagement photos, I’d say it’s still a good idea. We used our engagement pictures as decoration at our venue, gave our parents copies for their home (thanks Shutterfly – we got prints and super cute magnets), and used them in our own home. You could also use them for save the dates and invites! 

“When do I book my engagement photos?” This is a mix between personal preference and when your save the dates and invites are going out. If you’re not sure about when these go out, check out the blogs linked in the corresponding words above (click save the dates to see the blog about save the dates and invites to see the blog about invites). Engagement photos are great to personalize your save the dates and invitations. We didn’t use our for our save the dates or invites and I really do regret it. Learn from my mistakes! 

“Where should I have my engagement photos taken?” You should have your engagement photos taken somewhere that means something to you, describes your personalities, or fits your wedding vibes. These are photographs you’re going to have on display in your home and in albums for the rest of your lives. They’re also photographs you might use around your wedding venue, on invites, and on your wedding website so you want to make sure they fit the look you’re going for. You may also want to choose somewhere that has versatilely so you can move around and look like you’ve changed locations. This allows you have to several backgrounds to choose from when selecting which photographs you’re going to use. 

“What do I wear to my engagement photos? I need some inspiration!” This is a great question and something that I see a lot! I always recommend bringing at least two outfits for you and your partner. For men, it’s easy to switch out their shirt or button up to make a whole new outfit. Women, this is where you come in! I recommend bringing one casual outfit (think either jeans and a nice shirt or a sundress) and one fancier outfit (a long dress or something similar). I wore a short, tight white dress with a wrap around skirt over it so that I could easily convert my outfit. Robbie (my now husband) wore jeans with a t-shirt and, overtop, a button up. That made it really simple for him to change from casual to “fancy”. Switching outfits also helps to give you options when selecting photographs to use. With change of backgrounds and change of clothes, it’ll look like you’ve actually done two photoshoots (for the price of one)! Here’s our photos by Susannah Lynn Photography:

Here are some good Amazon engagement clothes options that other brides recommended (they come in different colors/patterns):

Images from their corresponding listings.

Don’t forget to join our Facebook group for more wedding shopping and inspiration. You can find us at Mary Taylor’s Wedding Deals & Finds!

If you have any more questions about engagement pictures, please feel free to let me know in the comments on the Facebook post where I originally posted this blog or message me! If you had a unique or interesting engagement story or engagement photos taken or just loved your photographer, feel free to tag them and thank them on the post. You can even submit images and your story below for a chance to be featured on the blog!

Signing off, Mary Taylor <3

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My Bachelorette Party

I am so excited to finally be writing and sharing this blog post! I have dreamt about it for a long time now. Every bachelorette party is different (which makes it that much more fun). Some include weekend long vacations with tons of friends, getting drunk and staying out until 5am, relaxing at the beach, boudoir photoshoots, or even strippers in a hotel room. Mine was exactly what I could have hoped for – the perfect mix of fancy and laid back, lots of good food, unlimited mimosas, and quality time with a small amount of friends! My sister (MOH) did an amazing job making it happen!

We started our morning by all meeting at the train station where we took a train to downtown San Diego. My sister surprised us all with matching sunglasses and had even set a “dress code” for everyone (black and red). We sipped mimosas (I mean, just orange juice 😉 ) and played games as we peered through the windows at the gorgeous ocean view. If you haven’t taken the train along the coast of California, you have to! It’s absolutely stunning! It looks like you’re floating on water!

One of the games we played was a game where each person had a clothespin with a photograph of myself and my fiancé (well, now husband), Robbie (one picture on each side). A few days before the bachelorette party, my sister emailed us both a list of questions which we then answered separately (and privately – we weren’t allowed to know what the other person’s answer was). 

Our answers couldn’t say names or he/she. Some of the questions included (there were 10 total):

  1. Where/when was our best vacation?
  2. My number one love language is…
  3. How many kids are we having?
  4. Who wears the pants in the relationship?
  5. We just had an argument – it was probably about…

On the train, my sister read out a question and one of our answers. Then, the girls had to hold up the picture of who they thought she read the answer of. After she announced who said it, she read the other person’s answer. It was incredible how similar our answers were! It was super funny and a perfect game for my bachelorette party! 

Once we arrived at our stop, we took a walk to where we would be catching our boat for the brunch cruise!

We took a photo outside of the boat which my dear friend Kayla ended up buying for me! How cute is that?! Here’s the picture below:

Once we boarded the boat we noticed two other bride-to-be’s! Later in the trip I ended up meeting one of them and handing out dare cards to other passengers on the boat. On the top deck of the boat, there was a live musician who was singing custom songs based on requested. My sister went up to tell him I was getting married and he sang a song about “Mary is getting married!” It was absolutely hilarious! I danced in the center of a massive group of people! 

After our brunch cruise we stopped at a rooftop bar for a drink before heading back onto the train. I was given a list of dares and I got to allocate one to each girl at the party and the rest were for me. We didn’t quite make it through the list but we did do some of them including me getting a picture with this random guy (who ended up being a magician and freaking blew our minds)!!! There were a couple of amazing tricks (well, all of them were amazing but two in particular that stood out). I am probably not telling these in the best way but he had me write my name on a card at the beginning of his act and throughout the time kept showing it to me, picking it out of the deck, etc. By the end of the act the same card I wrote on was INSIDE of a lemon that he cut open. We didn’t see any holes or cut marks in the lemon though. My favorite one was when he had me and my bridesmaid, Michelle, hold hands to symbolize our lifelong friendship. I can’t remember if he drew (with his finger) an x on the outside of our hands or we did but when we opened our hands I had an x drawn with sharpie on the inside of my hand! I never felt anyone or anything touching there the entire time.

After our train ride home, we hung out at the pool until that night when we went out on the 101 for some dancing and drinks! We decided that after our individual bachelor/bachelorette parties that we would combine everyone for the evening! It worked out perfectly and was such a blast. Even our families got to join us at the pool to celebrate!

A HUGE thank you to my incredible sister Cristina who made this bachelorette SO special! I wouldn’t have changed a thing! Thank you to everyone else who helped and attended as well <3 It would have been completely different without all your guys’ help, planning, and presence!

I love how bachelorette parties are whatever you want them to be. Every bachelorette party is unique in it’s own way! If your bridesmaids and maid of honor planned you an amazing bachelorette party, I want to hear about it! Go comment on my Facebook post (the one that shares the link to this blog) and tag whoever helped you pull off your epic bachelorette party! You can even submit your story below for a chance to be featured on the blog! I cannot wait to see what you share with us! Don’t forget to join myself and over 600 other brides in our shopping and inspiration wedding group on Facebook. Click here to see what we are all about. And if you’re wondering where I got my super cute “Mrs. Burke” hat and my gorgeous white and gold sash, go check out Wedding Apparel NZ. I will put links to both items in the group <3 You can also check out the blog I wrote about them here.

Signing off,

Mary Taylor <3

Want to be featured on Mary Taylor Weddings – the Blog? Fill out this form to submit your story!
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My Experiece With Wedding Apparel New Zealand

Shopping for our wedding has been nothing short of an adventure! Because we are having our wedding in California, we have used companies all over the world to find exactly what we were looking for. I started following Wedding Apparel New Zealand a while ago – before I even started Mary Taylor Weddings! I loved following their Facebook page and seeing all their new custom creations. I was so excited when I got in touch with them and they said they’d love for me to try out some of their products! What I like about Wedding Apparel New Zealand is that they’re not only local but they’re personable. You know that these are real kiwis doing their best to help brides and grooms all over New Zealand. They communicated with me regularly and allowed me to make changes to my items as I needed! 

So let’s get in to what I actually got! I will include links below so you can easily find the items on their website! First up is this hat! How gorgeous is this hat?! I love that the brim is metal so I can easily shape it. I plan to wear this for not only my bachelorette party but also our honeymoon in Hawaii! To see me wearing it then, follow me on Facebook and Instagram! I can’t wait to get to show off this hat in person and take super cute photos with me! 

Next is the sash! I know there’s lots of places to get sashes but having our wedding color be gold, I saw this sash and HAD to have it. The gold is really sparkly and I love the ring design that’s added to it. I plan to wear this for my bachelorette party and possibly even my bridal shower! 

This next thing is probably one of my favorites because being a photographer, I know how important it is to have a beautiful hanger. It’s not something you normally think about but it’s great for pictures of your dress hanging up and it’s a keepsake that you can use to store your dress even after your wedding day.

Lastly was our custom wine bottle stickers! When I saw these, I fell in love with the idea! Our wedding is wine and travel theme so this added touch is going to look beautiful. For the ones we got, I wish they were a bit more purple toned instead of brown but nevertheless, I still love them and cannot wait to use them (you’ll have to come back to the blog to see what we do with them on our actual wedding day)! 

They also included this super cute custom cake topper for my bridal shower as a little gift! It was perfect time because when they emailed to let me know, I was had just emailed our baker to order our cake for my bridal shower! 

Thank you so much Wedding Apparel New Zealand! I cannot wait to include your gorgeous products in my wedding day celebrations and to show off how we use everything! 

If you want to check out Wedding Apparel NZ’s website head to: https://weddingapparel.co.nz/

Don’t forget to follow them on Facebook to see all their amazing products and updates! 

To learn more about wedding planning tips, tricks, and deals head to my Facebook page: www.facebook.com/MaryTaylorWeddingPlanning and follow me on Instagram: www.Instagram.com/MaryTaylorWeddings. You can also find other amazing deals and products in my Facebook group Mary Taylor’s Wedding Deals & Finds.

I hope this helped you to learn more about Wedding Apparel NZ, their beautiful custom products, and a little bit more about our wedding day! We cannot wait to show you more!

Signing off,

Mary Taylor <3

 

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Spray Tanning Before Your Wedding – What You Need to Know & Who I Recommend

Have you ever had a spray tan or used self-tanner? I see so many brides asking about tanning before their wedding day. We all want to look our absolute best of on our big day but if you’ve never used artificial tanning before it can be a bit daunting. You should still look like you. And have you ever see people who turn out looking orange?! Wouldn’t that be a nightmare before your wedding day?!

As many of my readers know, I live in New Zealand but our wedding is in California. With seasons being flipped, we will be leaving our winter to attend our summer wedding in the States. The majority of our guests will be blessed with a glowing tan but I will be a shade of pale. I actually didn’t fully consider doing a spray tan until I saw a company called Little Honey. They’re crafted here in New Zealand (yay for local products), paraben free, cruelty free, and vegan! I loved that I could do it at home, take it with me to California, and apply as much or as little as I wanted to. When I first got the box, I was SUPER nervous about trying it because I had no idea how it would turn out. Would it be difficult? Would I end up orange? Would I do it wrong and end up with an uneven tan?! I had posted a picture on my Instagram story of it and had friends asking for me to video myself trying it out. So, I did! Check out the Instagram story footage below.

 

Look at this end result!! Not only was it SUPER easy but it smelled amazing! I was really scared it would hurt my sensitive skin after shaving but it didn’t hurt or sting at all. I am SO impressed! And, it didn’t rub off on anything. It takes only 10 seconds to dry and I was under a white fuzzy blanket after (yes, it’s freezing here). 

I cannot say how other tanning experiences would go since I haven’t tried any others yet but Little Honey was exactly what I was looking for. And lucky for you (no matter where you live), they ship internationally! 

So here’s some tips I have in general for any spray or self tanning for your wedding day.

  1. Do it ahead of time to see what you like and don’t like. You don’t want your first time to be the week of your wedding.
  2. Shower and exfoliate BEFORE you get your tan.
  3. If you’re doing it at home, have someone help you with your backside (legs, back, shoulders, etc.)
  4. If applying at home, apply carefully onto your elbows, hands, etc. because of the creases in your skin.
  5. Wear shorts or loose clothes directly following your tan so it doesn’t rub.
  6. Wait a minimum of four hours before showering after your tan (this could change depending on the type of tan you use). I personally waited until the next day.
  7. You CAN tan your face as well (check with whoever you purchase your tanning solution from or where you get your tan done just to be sure).
  8. Each day after your spray tan, remember to moisturize your skin so the tan lasts longer and your skin feels smoother!

I hope this helped you to not only decide if a self-tanner is right for you but also helped you learn more about self/spray tanning and Little Honey! If you’re going to try Little Honey, go comment on the Facebook post about this article! Don’t forget to join me on Facebook at Mary Taylor Weddings and Mary Taylor’s Wedding Deals for fun wedding shopping and great deals.

Find Little Honey on Facebook here or online here. Images by Mary Taylor Photography.

Signing off,

Mary Taylor <3

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Bride’s Guide to Prime Day 2019

It’s Prime Day 2019! As of now there is just over 27.5 hours left to grab these amazing deals!I never really shopped much on previous Prime Days but this year, I am a bride! That means not only do I get to do lots of shopping but I am also looking for the best deals around. Just today, I finally got to purchase flowers that had been sitting in my cart for months! I had no idea they would be on sale but was thrilled when I realized I had just saved over $8! If you’re not already a Prime member, you can sign up for a FREE 30-day trial here. If you would like to create a free wedding registry on Amazon click here.

If you’re looking for a constantly updated list of the best wedding deals, join our group Mary Taylor’s Wedding Deals on Facebook. I have been posting for over 8 hours today with Amazon Prime Day deals! There are so many cool things about the group!

  1. You get to interact with other brides and share your reviews and purchases.
  2. You don’t have to do all the work to find the deals you want – I do it for you!
  3. You can turn on notifications for specific threads that you want to stay updated about (for example: bachelorette party items)
  4. Even after Prime Day, you’ll get to see new deals and get exclusive discounts to all different online stores!

Here are some of the most popular items I have posted about so far!

Bachelorette Party Finds:

Mr. & Mrs.

Bridal Accessories

Flowers / Greenery

Decor

Honeymoon/Travel

For the DIY Bride

Clothes

** All images were taken directly off of the Amazon listing for that item. I do not own the images. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. Prices can change at any time and items may run out of stock without notice. I will try my best to update this blog when items are out of stock but cannot guarantee it. These links should still work even after Prime Day but prices may have changed and deals may have expired!

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Kimberly’s DIY Bridal Shower

I love getting to write blogs about real brides – brides that are currently going through the motions of planning their wedding. When I saw Kimberly post a bunch of images from her bridal shower on Facebook, I had to talk to her! As I am planning my own bridal shower, I have been looking at Pinterest. But sometimes, it’s hard to envision it all coming together that beautifully. When I saw Kimberly’s post, I knew it was possible! Her bridal shower is 100% Pinterest-worthy! When we got chatting, I learned that Kim’s bridesmaids and aunts did everything themselves! Even the bath bombs. If you want to create a bridal shower like Kim’s, look out for links to products throughout. Check out our DIY bridal shower signs and games on Etsy here.

Chalkboard Signs: https://amzn.to/2XhBjFZ 

When asked what her favorite part about the shower was, she says, “My favorite part of the bridal shower was being able to spend time with family. My fiancé’s family are all from New York and it is extremely rare that both of our families get to be together at the same time.” Because everything was 1. DIY and 2. absolutely gorgeous, I also wanted to know which of all the incredible decorations were her favorite. She said she LOVED the centerpieces, “the flower was gorgeous and the rose gold mason jars really added a nice accent. Our accent color in the wedding is going to be rose gold as well.” I love that they matched the bridal shower theme to the wedding theme! We are going to try to do the same for our wedding and shower as well. She said the bath bombs that her maid of honor made were also a huge hit and so was the pedicure in a jar (what to include below). 

(Click the images above to view them larger)

DIY Pedicure Mason Jar – Mason jars: https://amzn.to/2XlRx0L Super cute nail files: https://amzn.to/2LvHrTG Q-tips: https://amzn.to/2XiUzD0 Bulk nail polish options: https://amzn.to/2XjlIpk, https://amzn.to/2J0Xh7m, https://amzn.to/2XjSG97 Nail polish remover pads (bulk): https://amzn.to/2RJZWFf Nail clippers (bulk): https://amzn.to/2FHvPsY Hershey’s Kisses: https://amzn.to/2FKjdRW

Similar Chalkboard Sign: https://amzn.to/2XMHSji Similar Gifts & Cards: https://amzn.to/2LrAFhO

Kim also gave me some really cool ideas for other brides’ bridal showers! She said they played the newlywed game. She had to answer questions about herself to try and match her fiancé’s answers. For every answer she got wrong, she had to stick a piece of bubblegum in her mouth! She says, “It was SO hilarious, I could barely even talk by the time the game was over. Not sure if that’s a good or bad thing because my fiancé said a lot of different answers than I did, but everyone sure got a kick out of it.” 

Kim’s gorgeous dress (it even has pockets!): https://amzn.to/2J039xC 

One of her favorite moments of the shower was during gift opening. She says, “my aunt gave me the most emotional gift I’ve ever received in my life. My mom passed away over 9 years ago and she knows how hard it has been on me knowing that my mom isn’t able to be here for any of the most important times in my life. She had made me a pillow with my moms picture on it, and around her photo is lace that is made from her wedding dress. When I opened that gift the entire room, including me, was in tears. It was such an emotional, and sad, but beautiful moment.” How gorgeous is that?! Bridal showers are a great time to give personal and thoughtful gifts <3

I love that Kim’s shower included DIY projects, her family, funny games, and sweet moments like the one above. It sounds like the perfect bridal shower! The women who put together this event should be really proud of themselves. Congratulations to our bride-to-be, Kim! Thank you so much for allowing me to share about your beautiful and heartwarming bridal shower!

Want to be featured too? Let’s chat! Message me on Facebook or email me at [email protected]

Want to see more blogs like this? Like me on Facebook.

Want to see more “how to create this look” and find more wedding deals? Join my Facebook group: Mary Taylor’s Wedding Deals

Stay up to date with deals, ideas, inspiration, and blogs on Mary Taylor Wedding’s Pinterest. You can even re-pin some of Kimmi’s amazing DIY projects!

Bridal shower games and signs – DIY printable templates on Etsy

**Please note as an Amazon Associate, I may earn a small commission from qualifying purchases. However, it doesn’t cost you anything extra to use them! This helps to keep my blog and groups going!  Thank you for your support and understanding. 

© Jinal Govind Photography | https://www.jinalgovindphotography.com/weddings

Tips For The Bride

Do you ever see ideas that you think, “I wish I would have thought about that before!” I’ve gathered a list of tips from actual brides who have already said “I do.” These will help you to prepare for the best day of your life!

© Jinal Govind Photography | http://www.jinalgovindphotography.com/weddings

 

💍Don’t wear a bra or anything tight the morning of your wedding day so you don’t have marks/lines on your skin

💍Tell your HMUA you need to be done at least a half hour before you actually do, as many will run late (this depends on the artist but I have personally heard so many “horror” stories)

💍Hydrate the night before your wedding

💍Pack snacks in your bridal bag so you never get hungry – Don’t forget to eat throughout the day

💍Wear a shirt that buttons or zips while getting your hair and make up done – something you don’t have to pull over your head

💍Make sure you don’t have a hair tie around your wrist

💍Number all your invites/rsvp so that if guests forget to include their name, you have a record of who sent back their rsvp

💍To pee: straddle the toilet, buy a bridal buddy, or get a SheWee

💍Don’t forget to try sitting in your wedding dress before you have the alterations completed

💍Do a first look with your parents

💍Don’t forget to sit at your head table and just watch your guests for a moment – absorb the moment!

💍Make an emergency kit for the day of! Don’t know what to include? My check list has a separate list just for the day of: Checklist here.

💍Create a “don’t call the bride” list of all your contacts so you don’t have to be interrupted on your wedding day. Find that in our list of questions to ask wedding vendors.

💍Have some one-on-one time with your husband and have a private cocktail hour (or 20 minutes) in a separate room from your guests

💍Instead of throwing your bouquet, hand it to the couple that has been married the longest

💍Don’t rush into choosing your wedding party – things change quickly especially when you’re planning a wedding!

💍Create a separate email for all your wedding related inquiries – make sure your fiancé has access to it as well!

💍Make sure your invites/save the dates/rsvp cards/etc. all match and print extras for your keepsake and for your photographer to capture on your wedding day

I hope this helped you to think of some ideas that you hadn’t thought of before! Want more tips and tricks? Like me on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/marytaylorweddingplanning.

Signing off,

Mary Taylor <3

© Jinal Govind Photography | http://www.jinalgovindphotography.com/weddings

© Stefanie Irene Photography, LLC | www.facebook.com/stefanieirenephotography

Bridal Shoe Inspiration

Who else is struggling with what shoes to wear? I had no idea that this would be such a difficult task. There are so many options and so many things to consider. You want to make sure that you’re comfortable, that you can dance in them, and that they match your dress. You should also consider where your wedding will be taking place. Our wedding is on a golf course – which means lots of grass and no thin heels. 

Whether you’re looking for flats, boots, wedges, or stilettos, here is some wedding shoe inspiration from real brides:

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Nurses Make This Bride’s Dreams Come True

Rebecca Wheatley, a bride in Delaware, shared her wedding day images with a group of brides last week. This wasn’t just any wedding though. The amazing nurses at her grandmother’s ICU hospital pulled off an incredible pop-up wedding so that her grandmother could see her get married. Rebecca says she is so thankful that she wants to “make these nurses famous for their act of kindness.”

Her husband and she were planning a wedding for 2020. Only 19 days after they got engaged, she found her grandmother’s cancer had returned. Rebecca says, “We thought [she] had been cancer free for a year and a half!” They were now learning that the cancer was quickly spreading across her entire body – almost every bone and even in her brain. She says, “I NEEDED my grandmother at my wedding. She’s one of my best friends! So, we changed our date.”

Rebecca and her partner, Zachary, moved their wedding date to only be six months away. Throughout the wedding planning process, they made sure to continuously and carefully plan every detail around Rebecca’s grandmother’s health. Rebecca says, “We spent six months counting every second.” Two days before their wedding, her grandmother was rushed back into ICU. Her health was unfortunately declining rapidly. “My mother and I were crushed because we had done EVERYTHING to make sure she could be there.”

They had their ceremony at their venue like planned but instead they had grandma watching on Facetime. As soon as they walked down the aisle as man and wife, they got into cars with their wedding party and headed directly to the hospital. She had no idea they would be surprising her! The nurses had helped Rebecca plan another ceremony and mini-reception in a special room at the hospital. The nurses decorated the hall, got them a cake, and gave them flowers. Rebecca says, “I will forever be in debt to them for the love they showed us that day!”

Thank you Rebecca for allowing me to share your gorgeous story. It is so inspirational! We are so happy your grandmother got to be such a big part of your special day. Thank you to the nurses at PRMC for helping Rebecca and her family during this time. You have truly brightened so many people’s lives because of your kindness!

Amazing images captured by Samantha Anne Photography