Our Wedding

Wedding: Have a Good Time.

The biggest disappointment about weddings is that sometimes the bride and groom don’t have a good time at their own party.  Why?  Well… lots of reasons. Family obligations, friend drama, and financial strain are just a few.  So often times, by the time their day rolls around, they are over it.

I can honestly say I had the time of my life at our wedding.  Going into the whole thing, I wanted to make sure we were planning a wedding that I was perfect for us.  Here are a few things that helped make ours a good time:

stick to your guns

aih_wedding_heather

We really wanted a small wedding.  But it’s hard to only invite the people that absolutely need to see you say your vows, because you risk alienating other people that may have expected to see an invite in their mailbox.  But this was important to us, so we forged ahead and didn’t waver on our guest list choices.  We ended up with a 16 person wedding and the amount of love those guests brought with them was immeasurable. It was such a beautiful, intimate evening, and we both had a chance to spend real quality time with each and every one of our guests.

stay hydrated

aih_wedding_champagne

Having a well stocked bar at your wedding is key for your guests to relax, feel welcomed, and enjoy themselves.  But try to remember that you’ve had a long day: you’re overwhelmed, your tired, and you’re the center of attention.  The champagne will be flowing, as it should, but make sure to drink plenty of water too because your still hosting this wedding.

play a game

aih_wedding_game

Most weddings have dancing after dinner, but we decided to play a dice game called Left Right Center instead since we are a “game playing” couple.  It was awesome to sit around and have fun with everyone and really celebrate what it means to be a family to us.

Wedding: Food & Beverage.

I’ve overheard people in the past say the food at a wedding isn’t that important.  But guess what, it really, really is.  Eating a meal together is such a wonderful social activity. And no one is going to want to participate in that social activity if they are starving and can’t eat the food you provided for them.

Since we were hosting our wedding in our house, we wanted to have a chef cook in our kitchen.  It was important to me that the house smelled like good home cooking.  I interviewed some chefs for the gig.  What I was really looking for was someone with passion who would use our kitchen in every capacity and bring some fresh, local ingredients to life.

As if on cue, I found Chive, a sustainable events company in Beverly.  And it was love at first sight!  They were 100% on board for everything we wanted, and they did an incredible job from start to finish making the most delicious food.  They made sure our guests were well fed, with platy of passed nibbles and a bountiful family style dinner.

Chive in Action

Our Heatherland Wedding Menu

beet crostini

Hors d’Oeuvres

Pear and Valley View Chèvre Tartlets with sage and pomegranate

Sweet Potato Latkes with Sasquatch smoked fish and house made creme fraiche

Locally Made Za’atar Burrata and balsamic-roasted beets on lightly toasted crostini

Plated First Course

Blood Orange and Shaved Winter Vegetable Salad with seared Nantucket Bay Scallops

 passing plates

Family Style Dinner

Braised Tendercrop Farm Boneless Chicken with preserved orange and green olive relish

Miso and Ginger-Glazed line caught Pacific Cod

Roasted Brussel Sprouts and heirloom white beans with shaved goat’s milk tomme

Rosemary and Roasted Garlic Polenta with caramelized fennel and onions

 wedding cake

Plated Dessert

Pineapple Upside Down Cake with Luxardo Cherries and Salted Caramel Rum Sauce

 wedding_bar_day

Bar

Illahe Vinyards Pinot Gris, Oregon

Frog’s Leap Sauvignon Blanc, California

Domaine De La Chapelle Saint Victor Rose, France

Valori Montepulciano D’Abruzzo, Italy

Dibon Cava, Spain

Notch Saison, Notch Brewing Company, Ipswich

Berkshire Steel Rail Pale Ale, Berkshire Brewing, South Deerfield

Cape Ann IPA, Cape Ann Brewing, Gloucester

Dolce, 2006, Napa

Signature Cocktail

Winter Whiskey Sour: Spiced Apple, Lemon, Berkshire Mountain Distillery Bourbon, house made maple walnut bitters.

Wedding: Bringing it Home.

The one thing people are most surprised about with our wedding was the fact that we hosted it inside our home.  In the beginning of the planning process we had looked into the option of doing it where I’m from in California. But as we started thinking about it more, we began to talk ourselves out of that option.

We wanted our wedding to represent who we are as a couple, and nothing represented that more than this home of ours since we really have poured our hearts into it.

There were some big considerations in hosting our at-home Heatherland Wedding:

 

Wedding Guest List

wedding_dinner_dining_room

We really wanted an ultra-small event.  If we hosted the wedding ceremony inside our home, it would need to be less than 20 guests.  That meant we made really tough decisions on who would be receiving an invite.  We agreed on a rule to only invite guests that have met us both, so no strangers, and also only invite people who really needed to see us say our vows. Regardless of whether it’s a big wedding or not, there are always the feeling of excluding people when you are writing up a guest list.

 

Furniture

 

We opted to clear all the furniture out of our living room and dining room to make way for rentals.  We wanted everyone to be comfortable, and we also wanted people to be able to relax in a cohesive environment.  We brought in benches for the ceremony, and a large dining table for a family style dinner.

 

Season

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We decided to host a winter wedding.  All of our guests were traveling in from out of town, so that meant if there was a blizzard or other flight delays everyone would be in the same boat.  And since we weren’t dealing with a venue, we had the flexibility to adjust the date or time if we needed to.  Plus, the weather in New England is so wacky, I would have hated to have my heart set on an outdoor wedding in spring only to be pushed into a tent by bad weather.

 

Transportation

Having a small wedding is the same as having a small party.  You want your guests to be able to drink and enjoy themselves without having to worry about driving.  We set up a driver for the day to shuttle our loved ones from their hotels to our home; which meant no one got lost, no one was late, and no one had to be a designated driver.

 

With all of that in mind, we had a successful wedding.

 

 

 

 

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