Joy and Ant's Wedding - 20th December 2008

Maybe it is better to start telling from the day before…

The Day Before - Friday 19/12/2008

joy 1We already knew we had to be up really early because we needed to get our cake and take it to London. Off we went, a bit later than expected since loading up our little car full of wedding stuff wasn’t the easiest of tasks! Ant seemed more worried about not seeing the dress in the back seat in any way than making sure everything was in the car! We picked the cake up and with some difficulty we managed to find the safest place for its journey: my lap!

Yes, we drove all the way to London with our wedding cake on my lap…I’d scream every time Ant would drive a little faster and frantically check if the cake was still alright. The only problem with that was the absurdly gorgeous smell of chocolate cake invading the car…we had to be brave and not succumb to the temptation!

Already in London, we had to drop everything at the Barge and I proceeded to explain item by item of my list of things to do to the guys over there…You could see in their faces they were amused by our overzealous requests to make sure everything would go according to plan.

And off we go again! This time to the register office where we would go and finalise the details for the ceremony. Read: Picking vows the day before your wedding! Luckily our registrar was such a lovely guy. We got along really well and even decided we would have a reading after all! The only thing we were missing was having someone to read it! But why worry with small things like that? “I’m sure it will all be fine” – my future husband kept telling me. So I kinda let him deal with that.

We called it a day after finishing wrapping all the presents and having a quiet dinner by ourselves, at the most romantic restaurant we could find, Nandos!

Photos courtesy of Rob at Curve Wedding Photography (large versions here and more here )

The Wedding Day - Saturday 20/12/2008

joy getting readyWe got up on time (for once in our lives) and I headed to the hairdressers. I was extremely quiet whilst getting my hair done. Everything seemed so surreal to me I didn’t even know what to say. Very very non-Joy behaviour.

After some time, my lovely bridesmaid Amy arrived and I felt more relaxed chatting away…We left the hairdressers and when we were nearly at the hotel I realised I was suppose to let Ant know when I was about to arrive. We couldn’t meet at the hotel!!!

A bit of a panic took over me when I found out I had left my mobile phone at the hairdressers! Nice one Joy!

To my luck, when we arrived he and the boys were gone and my friend Jane had already arrived. From then on it was MAD. Time just passed so quickly!

Before I knew I was in my bridal robe getting my makeup done while Jane and Amy kept trying to persuade me to have something to eat. They failed…I couldn’t face the prospect of food in front of me. My stomach was all over the place. I was so excited!

Very soon, Rob, our photographer, arrived and all I can remember was how much fun I had. Me the girls and Rob kept laughing all the time! Cracking jokes, sipping some bubbly while I did my makeup and taking lots of awesome pictures. Rob surely made me feel like a Hollywood diva and I must admit I loved every second of it.

My Stomach Was Still All Over The Place

joy 2When we arrived at the Barge I saw so many people outside! Only five minutes until the beginning of the ceremony and all those people weren’t in their seats. At that point all I wanted to do was go and walk down that aisle! I sent one of my friends there to hurry people to their seats. One of our ushers came to pick me up and I will never forget his expression as long as I live. He was SO nervous he could barely speak. Bless him.

My stomach was still all over the place but now I had this very contagious feeling of ultra excitement and I couldn’t stop moving. I got out of the car alone and started walking quickly and not even my bridesmaid could keep up with me. She kept saying I should be waiting for her to help me with my dress but I just couldn’t wait! Everybody was there and I just wanted to look at Ant’s face.

I saw a few people like our Best Man and our ushers and they all reassured me I looked perfect. I was listening to the music and counting to make sure I would walk at the right time.

And that was that…the moment had arrived!

I gave the nod and my song started, I walked as graciously up the stairs as I could with that dress and shoes. As I walked up I could see some people’s faces light up as I appeared clearer and clearer to them. I stopped at the end of the stairs and saw the upper deck of the Barge completely full of people. I couldn’t believe my eyes…

joy 6

Everything was just as perfect as I had imagined. All the fairy lights, ribbons, every tiny detail made the room so perfect. I adjusted my dress and started walking down the aisle to meet Ant. All I remember was smiling. I couldn’t stop! And as if I had rehearsed it many times before, I met him right when the song had ended.

The ceremony itself seemed to last 5 minutes to me. I could tell Ant was nervous as he would miss every other word of his vows. So cute.

I kept looking at him straight and smiling, holding hands forming the infinity symbol at all times. We were radiantly happy and that seemed to spread to all guests whose faces were beaming with lovely smiles.

We never cried during the whole ceremony. In fact, we managed to make everybody burst into laughter when in the end of my vows the register said: Joy, do you take Antony your lawful wedded husband? I excitingly replied: “You betcha!”

We Could Feel Their Blessings

The rest of the night was just as fun as we had always wanted. Our guests seemed to like our very non-traditional table seating plan and our curry buffet. Having speeches was something we debated for many months and Antony was quite apprehensive about it. We compromised by me agreeing in having one as well.

It was a very fun and also emotional moment especially for me, because we thanked our families even though my family wasn’t present physically, we could feel their blessings all the way from Brazil.

joy 7

Antony’s speech was such a success. He delivered it in such a lovely way, I was so proud to see my husband making everybody laugh.

We danced away to “At Last” by Eta James and opened the dance floor to all our guests with glowing in the dark rings, necklaces and feather boas to everybody. So many wonderful pictures were taken! I will never forget the way our photographer made us feel: so at ease, so relaxed and happy to take as many shots as possible. Having an album to remember this day was something extremely important to us and that’s why there was only one man for this job. Thank you Rob for all you have done for us.

Our wedding was definitely the happiest day of our lives. They say fairy tales don’t exist, but I beg to differ. We’re living a modern version of one right now.

Last but not least, I’d like to thank Wedding Chaos for all your help and support during the planning of our Winter Wonderland.


Mrs. Winter Bride xxx

joy final

Photos courtesy of Rob at Curve Wedding Photography (large versions here and more here )