Saturday, May 3rd, 2008 will undoubtedly go down in my memory bank as one of the best weddings I've EVER had the honor to attend. In fact, when we left tonight Katie said, "Mom, I feel like I just left a family wedding!" That is truly how special everyone felt who attended. From the minute Mike came to greet his new bride at the door (incredible reaction, by the way, Mike), to the blast everyone was having at the reception, this day was what most couples dream of...perfection! Jennifer and Mike's wedding was a real hometown event and a special opportunity for me. As many of my blog readers know, seven years ago, my husband and I moved our family to Lincoln. One of the first people to make a tremendous impact on the lives of two of our daughters was Mike. Mike is one of the english teachers at the high school and Ali was in his class for the two years she attended LHS, and Katie was in his class for a year. He is an AMAZING teacher and probably the main reason Ali decided to make teaching high school english her career; he really made an impact on her because of the extraordinary teacher he is. I cannot tell you how excited I was when I met Jennifer last year and they told me they'd like me to photograph their wedding! As awesome as Mike is, Jenn is just as fantastic. She is a nurse who is so wonderfully compassionate. She just has that gentle softspoken way about her-and yet, there is this wonderful excitement and silliness that makes her so much fun to be around [speaking of silly, you should meet her sister Stephanie-that's a whole other post :)] Well, actually, I do need to say something about Stephanie. She is one of the reasons (if not the main reason), Jenn and Mike even got together. Mike was Stephanie's teacher and she thought he'd be perfect for her sister. She devised a scheme to put Jenn's phone number in a plastic Easter egg in a basket she gave to Mike (See? The egg DID come before the chicken in this case). When he finally opened it...well, you know the rest of the story :)
Oh, I got off track...back to telling you about the hometown connection. The wedding took place right here in Lincoln. Quite fitting considering Mike and Jenn have lived here pretty much their entire lives. The guest list was made up of people who are "the heart of Lincoln". As I was talking to various people it was interesting to realize even the vendors had connections to Lincoln. I found out that the DJ's family is from Lincoln as well! So many of the guests in attendance are from families who have been in this town for generations. And, speaking of generations; Jennifer's great-grandmother was there (which made it possible for there to be five generations of Thixton's in attendance). I certainly hope if I live to 93 I will look as good as her great grandma! Although Mike's grandparents are no longer alive, his grandfather played an important role in the wedding. At the end of the ceremony the officiant, Mandy, read a prayer that was written by Mike's grandfather in 1932. That was very special! It was fun meeting people the bride and groom have known their entire lives. Mandy, is a friend of Mike's sister and she has known Mike since the day he was born. She became ordained just so she could perform the ceremony for Jenn and Mike. Having grown up in the bay area I never really felt the connection one has from living in a small town. I think that camaraderie is one of the main reasons my family loves living here so much; and being priviliged enough to share in Jenn and Mike's big day was one of those fringe benefits that comes along with living here. To cement this hometown feeling, I loved how Jenn and Mike asked the floral design class at the high school to do all the flowers, AND WHAT A FABULOUS JOB THE STUDENTS DID!!!! I also loved the zebra print garter Jenn had on her leg just for Mike. If you know anything about Lincoln you'll know what the zebra connection is :) I'll be photographing another "Lincoln wedding" in October and can't wait for Sylvia and Matt's big day! I KNOW that wedding will be just as much fun as yesterday's was!!!! Here's a little taste of the photos we captured. For those of you who know Mike, I hope you enjoy the photos of the jeep! :) Enjoy their slideshow and feel free to leave a comment for them!