In early October, I traveled to Roseville in Sacramento for one of the most authentic and intimate weddings I’ve been a part of this year. My cousin, Stephanie, married her dream guy, Kord, in her grandmother’s backyard. Her mom was married in the same house, so many years ago, when she was still with us.
Kord has been like a second father to Steph’s first son, Julian. And in June, they brought a new bundle of joy into the world: Jameson. My cousin deserves all the happiness in the world and my heart is filled to the brim watching their family grow. One of my favorite details of the day was the cake topper she hand painted of their family.
Everyone played a special role in bringing this day to life. Luckily, my family is full of creative women. My Aunt Cathy, with the help of my cousin Annie, refinished her backyard for the occasion. She hired an electrician to string market lights and a chandelier through the handmade wooden altar. Cathy also stitched the fabric backdrop, created the centerpiece arrangements, and baked Steph’s favorite applesauce cake.
Steph brought a few old photos of her mom’s wedding day for us to recreate throughout the day. She salvaged pieces of her mom’s wedding dress to add fabric flowers to the bouquet. My grandmother was an amazing artist and her floor-to-ceiling landscapes are the statement piece of every room throughout the house. I decided to carefully hang Steph’s dress on a few of my favorites to ensure her presence was felt that day too.
With only a handful of their closest family and friends as witnesses, Steph and Kord exchanged vows in a short and sweet ceremony. Before the rest of their guests arrived, I whisked them away to a nearby oak tree field for some romantic time alone. In our golden hour frolicking, we disturbed a resting buck that promptly jumped up and ran away. Kord was ready to ditch the reception to run after it. (Just kidding…kind of.)
We arrived back to the house as the glow in the sky was started to fade. A standing ovation greeted Steph and Kord when they returned (and priority in the BBQ buffet line). We listened to four touching speeches, feasted, and watched Kord almost drop Steph during their first dance.
While they were preoccupied with hugs and goodbyes, Kord’s groomsmen decked out their get away truck in stickers, tin cans, and toilet paper. Then they escaped in the night as the rest of us clapped and whistled. Congratulations, you two! Love you both so much.
Fabric Backdrop: Cathy Zampa (bride’s grandmother) // Cake: Cathy Zampa (bride’s grandmother) // Cake Topper: Stephanie (bride) // Flower Crown: Stephanie (bride) // Table Arrangements: Cathy Zampa (bride’s grandmother) & Annie Burnette (bride’s aunt) // Rings: Etsy (bride); Tiffany & Co (groom // Photography: Paige Nelson // Venue: Private Residence