Rustic Nashville wedding at Legacy Farms, captured by Blue Mason Photography, featured on The Pink Bride www.thepinkbride.com Rustic Nashville wedding at Legacy Farms, captured by Blue Mason Photography, featured on The Pink Bride www.thepinkbride.com

 

 

Sarai Perkins & Jonathan Lewis

06.22.13

Cover Contest Runner Up!

Featured in the Summer 2013 issue of Nashville Pink Bride Magazine

 

 

The love story…

As my best friend Katie and I trekked down the road to Panama City, we were excited to be celebrating our recent college graduation and both acquiring teaching jobs. Little did we know the eventual result of this spontaneous trip to the beach. Jonathan and his best friend Logan decided to leave the day after on their own unplanned trip to Panama City to relax and escape reality for a bit. We are all four from Middle Tennessee but had never met each other until we took a chance and set off on our own adventures in the sun and sand!
Katie and I spent our first day in PCB on the beach, going to dinner, getting ice cream and then taking a walk on the beach. We were just two girls wandering the beaches with the objective of spying some good-looking guys. We meandered past two who were sitting on the beach simply talking. One of them immediately caught my eye, but of course we kept walking like we didn’t notice them. We decided, however, to circle back around and sit behind them in some chairs. After sitting there talking for a bit the boys started to pack up and walk off the beach. Me being the outgoing assertive type was not about to let Jon walk away without noticing us. I called out to them, “Why are ya’ll leaving so soon?” They walked over to us, and we began to introduce ourselves. Now I don’t usually freely give out my phone number, but this time I was glad I risked it. After exchanging numbers, we decided to hangout later at a beach party.
Who would have thought that these two guys would be so much fun! We enjoyed the night partying on the beach, going to clubs and swimming in the ocean. The four of us spent every moment of our trip with each other. We would hangout on the beach all day and spend the nights living it up. Swimming to sand bars, using other hotel pools, dancing the nights away, and enjoying each other’s company were just a few reasons why I began to fall for Jon. Jonathan and I immediately took to each other from the second we first hung out on the beach. We were inseparable! On our last night, Jon and I took a walk on the moonlit beach and talked for hours. I sat in front of him with his arms around me as I felt the sand between my toes, and we listened to the crashing waves. We stared up at the stars and began to talk about how we truly felt for each other. We had a blast on our trip, but we both were beginning to realize that our feelings surpassed Panama City.
After we returned to Tennessee, Jonathan called and asked me on a date. He picked me up on his street bike, and we were off like the wind for hours upon hours riding back roads. It didn’t really matter where we were headed as long as we were together. We were like little school kids laughing and spending every waking second we could together. I introduced him to my son a couple of months later. I knew instantly that he would be my husband and the father of my son one day. My son has grown to love Jon as Daddy. They have a connection with each other that I have never seen before.
After nine months of dating, Jon took me to a park in Ashland City that we had frequented when we first started dating. We played on the playground, walked by the river, and sat on the benches talking. I could tell Jonathan was acting a little nervous, but I didn’t know why exactly. While I was gazing out at the river, Jon grabbed my hips and turned me around. As I turned to face him he bent down on one knee and began telling me how much he loved me and Tristan. I felt as if my heart was going to pound right out of my chest, and then he asked me to be his wife. I jumped up and down and screamed, “Are you serious? Really? Seriously?” But of course he was. I jumped and wrapped my arms around his six feet plus frame saying, “Yes, yes, yes of course!” I could feel his heart racing when he asked me if I liked the ring. I had completely forgotten about that gorgeous rock he had in his hand. I immediately said yes, and he placed the most perfect ring on my finger.
No one knows what one moment, one conversation, or one event in time will change the rest of their lives. We had no idea how one celebratory trip with our best friends and a walk on the beach would affect us and our family for the rest of our lives. I am looking forward to living the rest of my life with my soul mate and best friend, wrapped tightly in his arms.

 

The big day:

One word… incredible! Our wedding day was everything we could have ever wanted. It was literally my fairy tale wedding! From the minute I woke up till we went to bed, everything was perfect. My magnificent bridesmaids, my mom and I started off the day making ourselves beautiful for the occasion. We drank mimosas, snacked on food and laughed the morning away as my hairdresser, Mindy, curled, pinned, and sprayed our locks. Soon enough it was time to head to our gorgeous venue, Legacy Farms in Lebanon, TN. I had fourteen months of anticipation and excitement built up from our engagement, and it was all about to become a reality. The bridesmaids had their cowgirl boots and Tiffany blue dresses on with makeup and hair finished. We arrived first so that Jon wouldn’t see me before the wedding. We went straight into our bridal room and began the process of putting on and lacing up the infinite sash on my dress. I say process because if you have ever worn a bridal gown you know it takes an entire bridal party to put it on and get it together!
As soon as my dress was on, the day seemed to accelerate at a ridiculous pace. There I was standing with my daddy on my left arm and my little man clinching my right hand. I remember looking into my daddy’s eyes thinking, “Welp, this is it.” Choking back the tears while my daddy’s eyes were full, I could not be any happier to have the privilege of the two most important guys in my life walk me down the aisle. It was time, so the three of us began the seemingly mile-long walk down the aisle. I continually looked at the ground and took deep breaths so that I didn’t mess up my makeup. Between Jonathan, my dad, and all the bridesmaids crying, they didn’t make it easy on me. The look on Jonathan’s face was so pure and sincere…I couldn’t wait to get to him and give him a kiss.
Finally, I made it down the aisle to my prince charming. Our officiant, Ryan Benson, asked my dad, “Who gives this bride to the groom?” My dad responded, “Her mother, son, and I.” Little did I know that was not all he had planned. My dad continued, “Wait a minute. I have something I need to ask Jon.” In my mind, I am thinking back to the time he asked my Daddy Bob for permission to marry my mom. My Daddy Bob made him climb a mountain before he could marry my mother, and I literally thought he was going to do the same! He began to talk about the day I was born and how happy they were. Dad went on to share some qualities that I have gained from my mother. He talked about our love for God and compassion for others. He continued with how I had acquired leadership skills and perseverance from him. Then he broke the solemn nature of the moment by retracting back to a gift my mom and I share, the gift of gab! After much laughter, Dad instructed Jon that he needed to learn to just nod and shake his head yes with this gift. Jon then nodded his head in practice. With all of that said, my dad welcomed Jon to the family with a strong handshake. I couldn’t decide whether to laugh or cry but either way it was perfect!
As I held Jon’s hands, our ceremony continued with commitment of our love for each other, and then Jon also committed his love for my son, Tristan, as his own. We dedicated ourselves to one another through our vows and God. We kissed and then took communion off to the side as our first act as a married couple. We were ready to walk down the aisle as Ryan announced us as Mr. and Mrs. Jonathan Lewis. Being distinctive in so many ways, we couldn’t simply walk down the aisle, so we chose to boogie down the aisle as the song “Signed, Sealed, Delivered” by Stevie Wonder played. As Jon and I approached the back of the crowd, I turned and saw my little man boogieing his way in his own distinct style towards us. I could not have asked God for one single thing in that very second. Pure love is all that I felt.
After our remarkable photographers, Blue Mason Photography, took our pictures, we were ready for the night of our lives. Our reception was full of great friends and family, laughs, dancing, and incredible food. We have so many wonderful memories from this night that it is hard to say them all. After Jon and I finished our first dance, it was time for the father-daughter dance. My daddy and I had told no one but the DJ of our little secret that we were about to unveil. We started off slow, caught up in the moment of dancing to “Stealing Cinderella” by Chuck Wicks. I felt as if I was eight again dancing on my daddy’s feet in his big arms at a western-themed dance at my school. Then we shocked everyone by showing our disco moves to “Staying Alive,” “The Twist,” and “Apache.” Next, we danced to the “Go Gators Chant” to really spice up the Alabama/Florida friendly family rivalry. Finally, we went back to a slow dance and finished with “Stealing Cinderella.” As my 8 year old would say, it was and felt, “epic!”
After receiving a face full of cake, thanks to Jonathan, it was time for the bouquet toss and garter gettin’. All my single ladies made their way to the dance floor as I was being warned of the low ceilings. You have probably already figured it out, but I don’t do so well with the staying within the lines and following directions. So here I go 1, 2, 3 … whoosh I throw the bouquet … and bam right into the ceiling it goes. The DJ so kindly reminds me over the microphone that the ceilings are low while everyone is laughing hysterically. Finally, after having to throw the bouquet twice, Jon’s cousin caught the bouquet. Now for the garter gettin’! The song “Hot for Teacher” by Van Halen began to play as I made my way to a chair in the middle of the dance floor. As I was boogying down in the chair, Jon was rolling up his sleeves. Our DJ kicked out a Mac creeper from under the DJ booth and Jon began to lay and roll across the floor on it. Jon being a diesel mechanic and me a teacher made the scene truly depict us. Jon rolled his way across the floor under my dress. First he pulled out a wrench, a screwdriver, and a ratchet. Finally, he came out with my garter. The room was filled with hoopin’ and hollerin’!
The rest of the night was spent dancing the night away. Jon and I wanted everyone to have fun at our wedding most of all. We truly believe that our wedding was the best night of our lives! We could not have asked for a more perfect and fun wedding. We are blessed beyond measure and thrilled about the many years to come! Later that night, my son asked my mom, “Can Mommy and Daddy have another party like that again someday?” My mom laughed and smiled at his honesty.

 

How did your groom help?

Jon was so supportive and helpful with the entire planning process. He went to every meeting we had with our venue, flowers, cake, DJ and wedding planner. Before the meetings, I would research the topic and find the top ideas that I liked. Jon would then help me narrow it down to one. I bought invitation kits and created our wedding invitations myself. Luckily Jon and my parents helped me assemble, stamp, and lick every one though. After our wedding showers, he was right there with me writing thank you notes to all of our wonderful friends and family. What can I say? I am one very lucky gal!

 

Did you do anything unique for your big day?

I feel as though we did a lot of unique things throughout our wedding to truly capture who we are. A couple things I have not already shared have to do with what I was wearing the wedding day. Lindsey, my matron of honor, made the three flowers that were in my hair and the flower on the flower girl’s dress. My mom made my garters out of her wedding dress, which was also my MomMom’s and great Aunt’s dress. She hand-sewed a Florida Gator and Alabama emblem on the garter with a pearl heart binding the two together. Jon and I clearly will be living in a divided SEC house. My mom was able to use the pearls from her veil, which made it even more special.

 

Is there anything you wish had gone differently?

The ONLY thing I wanted to do that I forgot was kiss my momma and daddy before exiting the aisle. My parents are my #1 fans and biggest support. I would not be where I am today without my amazing, supportive, and loving, Christ-centered parents.

 

Tell us about your wedding vendors!

We hired Blue Mason Photography to do all of our pictures for our wedding. These girls are truly astonishing! Ashley and Emily take their time to get to know you as a couple so that they can capture your personalities in each picture. They did our engagement pictures, bridal portraits, and wedding day, and every single picture is breathtaking! We HIGHLY recommend these girls to anyone and everyone! Not only are their pictures incredible, but they themselves have true beauty on the inside and out.
Amy Richardson with Main Event Pro was our wedding planner, and she was our saving grace. Amy literally walked us through every decision we had to make. Her thorough organization of the many facets of the wedding made decision-making so much easier. She kept our ideas and budget in mind as she guided us through this year-long process. We were so thankful for everything that Amy did for us.

 

Give us details about your honeymoon.

Jon and I left our wedding on an all-time high and didn’t come off of it until a week later after the honeymoon. We were lucky enough to enjoy a breathtaking trip to Jewel Dunn River Beach Resort and Spa in Jamaica. We spent an amazing week relaxing and exploring in this unique country that neither of us had visited. We had so many adventures while we were there, and the first one was to Dolphin’s Cove. We spent the day swimming with dolphins and sting rays, riding on boats, holding birds, and taking in the picturesque views. Our favorite excursion was to a local run spring up in the mountains called Blue Hole. We had met several other couples at the resort that we had enjoyed hanging out with on the beach, by the pool, playing volleyball, and living it up at night. Jon and I decided to invite these other couples to come with us to Blue Hole. We were all so incredibly glad that we took the chance and went on this off the beaten path journey. When we arrived, we saw lush greenery everywhere surrounding this awe-striking view. The Blue Hole is a natural spring that has gorgeous waterfalls and swimming holes throughout. We spent the entire day cliff jumping, swimming, and exploring God’s beautiful creation.
We loved staying at our all-inclusive resort where we could get as much food and drink as we wanted. We tried out all six restaurants multiple times throughout our honeymoon. I have a major sweet tooth; therefore, my favorite food was a fire-baked chocolate pizza with pineapple, coconut and banana on it. Yum! Jon enjoyed all of the jerk chicken, sausage, pork and any other manly jerk food he could find. Jon and I also loved the many activities that the resort had to offer like catamaran rides, glass bottom boat rides and snorkeling. We were fortunate enough to go on a private snorkeling trip that was unbelievable! Being able to swim with my man along the reef in Jamaica watching the colorful fish pass by is indescribable. Spending this week with Jon away from reality, family, and friends has allowed us to truly appreciate and enjoy each other. We cannot wait to see what other adventures we can get ourselves into next!

 

What advice do you have for future brides?

I truly loved every single minute of our wedding planning! The main advice I would pass on to future brides is to enjoy every minute of it. Make one decision at a time, and don’t let yourself get stressed over the little things. Make a checklist, and check things off as you go… it’s a stress relief to see things checked off the list. Ask your fiancé if there is anything he particularly wants in the wedding. Jon didn’t like the traditional black tuxedo shoes so he picked out Vans shoes and gave those as a gift to the guys. I love the way it turned out too! We have only been married a couple of months so we are still figuring out this new adventure called marriage. We are trying to follow the advice my Granddaddy always told my parents, “Take care of each other.” It seems simple enough, but is easy to lose track of straightforward advice sometimes.

 

Photographer: Blue Mason Photography

Wedding Planner: Amy Richardson

Florist: The Enchanted Florist

Caterer: A Catered Affair

Cake: The Bake Shoppe

Bridal Shop: Spoiled Lady

Formalwear: Street Tuxedo

Bridal Party Attire: David’s Bridal

Ceremony & Reception Location: Legacy Farms

Music/Entertainment: JD’sMusic

Rentals and Decor: Graceful Tables

Officiant/Minister: Ryan Benson

Make-up: Amanda Smith

Hair: Mindy Ensy