Finally!!! The day had come when I get to walk down the aisle to the man of my prayers... After spending a week with Andrew setting up the wedding I was ready to run down to him!!! But with a little self control we were married at 2:30 in the afternoon of the 4th of April 2009, in Kloof, South Africa.
The venue we decided to use was the courtyard between a campus of office blocks that I had fallen in love with when I first started in the field of Architecture, and so it was a natural choice. A friend of mine built a gazebo that bridged the water feature in the centre of the space and from it's beams brown organza curtains blew in the breeze. The theme was "Autumn" and the decorations all had a very modern flavour. Vibrant reds, oranges, yellows and browns were used and the arrangements were made out of branches, lights and beads. Candles and fairy lights were everywhere and lanterns hung from the ceiling. Even the weather was perfect for an outdoor event, (despite it pouring with rain the day before!) And the leaves from the Plein trees had already turned brown which added to the fall feel.
Our friends began to arrive at 2 in the afternoon, while I was getting all touched up for my Big Walk. My Bridesmaids with me, and we got to enjoy a time of prayer before the ceremony was to begin. When I saw my dad at my door, ready to escourt me down the aisle, naturally the full force of the day's events hit me and the tears fell as we walked around the back of the property together to wait for my moment. Veil in place and Andrew waiting at the front, the song began, performed my my dear friends on the music team at my home church Hillcrest Baptist, with a guest Cellist from Andrew's home church. As the second chorus began of 'Arrived' by Enfield, I turned the corner and there he was, as handsome as ever, biggest smile of his life, and all my nerves disappeared.
From then on, it felt like it was just the two of us, our own little world. Standing in front of Clint Archer, my pastor, we made our vows to each other before our Lord, and promised our wholehearted devotion to, and love for one another. With the words "Andrew, seal it", and a sweet kiss, the covenant was made and I was now Mrs Andrew Zekveld!
Straight after the ceremony we had some fun with the photographer, first some family portraits and then some "spinning pictures" with our bridal party.
After this, we got to greet some friends we hadn't seen in a very long time, and the rest who we weren't going to see for just as long... But as strange as it might be, I found it quite easy to bid farewell because I knew I had my best friend with me for life! I knew that was the greatest blessing of marriage; and that, Lord willing, we would be back in the not to distant future, albeit just a visit. The day was very different to how it had been planned thanks to Clint's usual antics (that's a good thing though!) and a lack of time for setting up due to rain the previous day, but perfect none-the-less! There was nothing I would have changed, nothing I would have done differently, and I was just so grateful to everyone for making it so special.
After some great speeches by close friends of ours, and letters from friends afar, we got to have our time of photo's, just the two of us and some human props - our flower girls and ring bearer!
As the evening progressed, Andrew and I were ready to leave, so we waved goodbye to everyone in our toilet papered car, our guests holding sparklers as we drove out the gates to head off on our journey together. It was such a perfect way to end our wedding - just the two of us, driving off into the evening, excited at the prospects of our future life together as a new family unit, husband and wife, best friends forever.
Special thanks goes out to:
My Mom, Dad, and brothers who sacrificed so much for me to get to, and have this amazing day
Andrew's Parents and Family, for travelling a long way to be there
Friends and Family that helped with the setting up and packing away
The Bridal Party for being such a joy to have to help and share the special day with
Amanda Laird Cherry for my beautiful dress
Helga Williams for my cake that was just perfect
Friends from Highbury for lending equipment and helping with Catering
Barbara Gibbs for helping with Catering
Host families for having out of town guests
Andrew McGibbon for such beautiful photos at a "mates rate''!
The attendants, flower girls and ringbearer for their roles in our wedding
Clint Archer for performing the ceremony
Charl Vermeulen for putting up with Clint to MC the reception!
The Music team at HBC and Joy Halland for the wonderful music item
Brian Ramsden for being the DJ, creating a very special ambience
All those at ITI who allowed me to use the venue
Jonathan Halland for steaming our ceremony so that friends all over the world could celebrate with us!