Whew. Here I am. It’s almost been a week and I don’t think I have any happy tears left in me. On October 7th I watched one best friend walk down to the aisle to another best friend... actually it’s beyond that… it’s family. I started dating Tyler at the end of November in 2011. At the beginning of that same month, Connor started dating Erica. Tyler had been best friends with Connor for years so it was obvious that when going home with Tyler for the first time, that I’d meet Connor. Which I did, over Thanksgiving break, and all we did was eat pigs in a blankey, play video games, and make palettes in the basement. Simply put, I got along with Tyler’s friends and grew to love them. Flash forward to the first time I met Erica. Connor and Erica met at Wright State and their story starts with Erica sneakily placing an undergarment on Connor’s door knob as a prank. The first time I met Erica though, May 12th, 2012 to be exact, Tyler and I went to WSU to visit Connor and while we were playing video games, Erica stopped by the room on her way out with her roommates. She was quiet but supported Connor’s love for games and fidget gadgets so I already loved her.
*great, I’ve started crying again*
Okay, I’ll try and make this short ****warning… I didn’t make it short****. SO as the years went by, we all hung out more, made more memories and in 2016 I got to experience the best thing ever.
THE TIMELINE: On April 23rd Tyler and I went to Wright State to stay with Erica and Connor for the weekend… the result of the weekend? We got to go and witness their little family grow when they adopted Winnie Roo the Jack Russell. After the adoption was official and we were leaving, I leaned over to Erica and joked that the ring always follows the dog. That night, I will never forget though. Erica was inside with Winnie and I was coming back from hanging out with my friend Darius. Connor was sitting on the front porch with some news for me… he was going to propose to Erica. In this moment, I wanted to scream and cry, but obviously I didn’t… I held it in like a grown adult. This worked out great because we already planned to come back the next weekend to watch them graduate so it was the perfect plan. I take grad pics of the two and once under the tower, Connor gets down on one knee. On April 29th, the plan went into play and it was epic… especially since Connor wore shorts that were tight enough for you to see the perfect outline of a ring box in his pocket when he sat down. But I kid you not, when Connor asked Erica to marry him, I’ve never seen a woman grab a ring and say yes so fast in my life. You’re probably wondering if I cried… OBVIOUSLY. Disclaimer: I am my mother-in-law’s daughter-in-law so crying is genetic.
NOW HERE WE ARE. Wedding day. Between then and now we have spent many nights together planning, eating pizza, and playing as much Mario Kart as possible. The morning of Paige, second shooter, best friend, everything, photographed the boys and I was with the girls. Everyone got ready together and it made the day even more special. At one point, while I was doing my makeup, Amy (Erica’s sister) was sitting on Erica’s bed finishing up her speech... WHICH SHE SANG. As Erica was getting her hair and makeup done, Winnie ran around like crazy and was constantly checking on her mama. Kirsten, Connor’s sister, was with us too, helping keep track of the dress and lip color. We were a team. As for the boys... or should I say Thedudes, they lounged in the hotel room, had some good laughs (and beers), and helped the groom get ready to walk down the aisle. All the guys wore dapper grey suits from Ticknors; paired with a silver tie. Connor personalized his look with a watch that was a favorite and worn by Erica’s Grandpa Hill. This was special to a lot of people and a huge piece of the already huge day. I never met Grandpa Hill, but he was everything to Erica so capturing this watch was everything to me.
The wedding was held at a winery in Jackson, Ohio where Erica grew up. It was in the country so the scenery was absolutely perfect for a Fall wedding. As I stood at the front of the pews and the music started, I held it together, but as Connor walked down the aisle with the officiant and cousin, Ryan, I started to bawl. And I don’t mean like a few little tears, I mean sniffling, can’t see, big ole tears bawl. As Connor passed me he looked at me with the biggest grin and said, “Get it together, Vic”. Which made me laugh… then cry harder. It didn’t help either that our closest friends in the pews were laughing at me and Papa Vic (Connor’s dad) was calling me “sniffles”. It also didn’t help that all the groomsmen were men that I’ve shared life with the past 6 years, with one being my husband. When Erica came down the aisle I kept it together thought because this was a moment I for sure needed to see for. I wiped my eyes and smiled my biggest as Connor took out his handkerchief and was now holding back his own tears. Erica glowed in her Galina Signature Gown. It fit her flawlessly and had some of the most breathtaking details. It was the perfect ceremony.
Once the reception hit, my photo-taking was done and my sweet friend Kelsie of Kelsie Lynn Photography came to finish up for me. We danced the night away. It was the best day ever. I could say even more, but I will finish it up. I truly could go on forever at how excited I am for these two. Their friendship means so much to me and getting to share this day with them was one of the best things of 2017 by far. It’s crazy, because I feel like after I blog post, this is sometimes the closing of a wedding and I don’t get to see many of my brides again, but Connor and Erica… see you in a week and a half! LOL! Can’t wait to watch your new family grow and know that I love you both, and Winnie, so so much! HERE’S TO MR. AND MRS. CANINI! ENJOY <3
* CLICK AN IMAGE TO SEE THE FULL MAGIC*