If my purple hair wasn’t already a dead giveaway, I’m not the most traditional person. I distinctly remember watching the flurry of activity surrounding a cousin’s wedding reception, when I leaned over to my grandfather and told him, “Don’t worry, I fully plan on eloping and skipping this mess.”
Thankfully, Jesse was on board. We thought we’d elope and have a nice family dinner to celebrate. But as it turns out, the Tulsa County Courthouse doesn’t perform marriage ceremonies. So we started looking at other options for having a low-key wedding.
We considered a destination elopement, but as we started pricing things out, we quickly realized we could do a small ceremony and dinner reception at home for the same cost, and it would be easier for our families. So we started contacting venues in town for availability for small wedding ceremonies. We chose the Aquarium.
They were opening a brand-new exhibit a month before our wedding day. (Due to delays, it opened the week before, so we really lucked out!) It reminded me of snorkeling in Hawaii — bright coral and fish everywhere! And then, of course, there was the shark tank.
After a short and simple ceremony, we caught the last bit of sunlight for photos. This is probably the number one reason I’m glad we ended up doing a small ceremony — neither of us are big photo-takers, so it’s really nice to have good wedding photos of the two of us.
Afterwards, we gathered the family together for a dinner reception at a nearby local pizza restaurant we love. Our families surprised us with a slideshow of baby pictures playing throughout the dinner. Well, they surprised me, as Jesse was in on it. I was in a car accident a couple months before the wedding, and he conveniently used the opportunity to get my grandmother’s cell as an “emergency contact” without raising my suspicions, then promptly texted her to mail his mother baby photos. Pretty clever, I have to admit.
The dinner reception is the other reason I’m glad we had a small local ceremony — you really don’t get many opportunities to have your family all together in one room. It was truly special.
If you’re interested in hearing more about the wedding, Jesse and I started our podcast back up again at Company Ink! Next month we’ll be discussing more about the planning, decision making, what we expected from the process, and what surprised us.