Paige and Matthew Nielsen Wedding Story
Saturday, June 10, 2017
The bridesmaids, which included my sister, 2 high school friends, and my sister-in-law, and my mom and I made it to Black Hills Receptions at 9 am to start the day off with hair and make-up. It was a great morning of getting pretty and having fun with friends and family. Anxiously awaiting the afternoon wedding. We pondered doing a first look for a long time, but the wedding wasn't until 4:30, I wanted photos done before the ceremony so we could spend more time with our guests and I wanted my fiance to show his true emotions to me. So we opted for a first look and letter opening for each other, and it was an amazing moment for just the two of us to share! Luckily it was a beautiful day, the day before was very hot, and it was supposed to rain the day of, but it didn't until later that evening when we were inside the tent for the reception. The ceremony was gorgeous and sunny at Swan point, we had drinks with fruit & cheese for cocktail hour at the Gazebo, and did a lavender toss send-off to the reception tent. Anything's Possible Catering had the most delicious food and Star Spangled Batter made the delicious cupcakes! Matt and I surprised everyone with a choreographed first dance that was so much fun! Then we partied the night away with a family friend who has her own DJ business. Couldn't have asked for a better day to enjoy with everyone we love!
How We Met
We met in undergrad at Chadron State College in Chadron, NE and started dating in fall 2009. It was my last year and Matt's 3rd year. Spring of 2010, I graduated from Chadron and went off to Oregon for optometry school at Pacific University and a year later Matt headed off to medical school at UNMC in Omaha, NE. Long distance never seemed like a good option, but after several on and off weeks to months of talking and not talking, seeing each other during summer and winter breaks, Matt decided to come visit me in Oregon summer 2012. Since then we have continued to make the long distance work and fell in love in the process. I graduated Optometry school May 2014 and got stationed on the Air Force base in Cheyenne, WY. Matt graduated medical school May 2015 and matched to the family medicine residency program in Rapid City, SD. 5 hours apart was a lot more doable than the thousands of miles between Oregon to Nebraska.
Engagement: June 2015 we took a trip to Universal Studios in Orlando and a cruise to the Bahamas. Matt was trying to find the perfect moment to propose all week during the cruise and I was completely clueless. Finally, on the last day of the cruise we were on the Royal Caribbean's private island in the Bahamas, Coco Cay and found a secluded area with hammocks. We were relaxing on the hammock in the morning sun when Matt asked if it was the perfect moment. Me, still unknowing to what was going on, said yes of course it is perfect. So Matt got a card out for me to read while he proceeded to take pictures of us. When I opened the card it had 'Marry Me' written inside and Matt had been hiding the ring behind my head. I had to look at him and say 'are you serious' before proceeding to cry and of course say 'yes.'
Planning for Our Day
We were engaged for 2 years so I had plenty of time to get everything in line for the wedding. However, a lot of it can't be done until a few weeks before, thus it was good to have professionals and be organized before the big day. My parents helped tremendously in creating most of the decorations to make it very personalized and it was wonderful to tell Black Hills Receptions what we wanted and they created it all from set-up to tear-down. Professionals made the day go smoothly!
Hint for Brides
Take it all in...not just the wedding day, but the fun in planning, hopefully help from family and friends, and enjoying making decisions with your soon to be spouse. The wedding day goes by fast, as everyone says, so make sure to enjoy every moment!