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health + home

everything else in life.

Wedding Day!

Caitlin Surakitbanharn

i think it's safe to say that most girls dream of their wedding day their entire life. some folks will argue that it's lame or not modern of a girl to even admit that, but any women that denies that she didn't daydream about her wedding when she was a little girl is a liar.

at like 6 years old, my wedding dreams were pretty normal; a pretty dress, California, a beach, a sunset, and an amazing husband (emphasis on that!).  as i got older and into adulthood, i felt subject to the annoyance of bridezillas and Facebook oversharing and all the theatrics around that so i stopped thinking about the wedding.  when Jao and i decided to get married, i was pretty stoked because...hey my dream came true!  i have an amazing husband that i LOVE more than anything!  as i've mentioned before, the planning process was a total nightmare for me, and pretty much up until the morning of the wedding, the whole thing was an exhausting pain in the ass.

but then....we woke up on Saturday, February 22nd, and it was the most beautiful morning in San Diego i'd seen yet.  No marine layer was covering the city, the sun was shining, the sky was clear and bright.  Jao and i woke up late but thankfully, we are quick to get ready.  Within an hour, hair was done, makeup was on, my monastery look was on (white jumpsuit!), and we were out the door and on our way to Wat Metta with our friends!

getting ready in our room.  my sister, mom, step-dad, and my sister's boyfriend Brian (doing my hair!)
ready to go to the monastery! (jumpsuit, Topshop. clutch, Kate Spade. sweater, JCrew. Jao's suit, custom)

the 45 minute drive into the mountains to reach the monastery was amazing.  we didn't lose anyone in our caravan of about 15 cars, people who were running late ended up finding us en route, and Jen mooned us!  the weather was perfect, the sun was shining...the day was off to a perfect start.

beautiful morning at the monastery

giving alms.

the ceremony with Ajaan Geoff was beautiful, truly moving and his advice to us was pure, simple, and potent.  his blessing was heartfelt, and we left the monastery on a high note.  the food we brought to feed everyone was incredibly delicious, everyone was well fed, and just before we left, our AMAZING photographer, Parker Young, snapped this photo....

image via Parker Young Photography.

this is the first picture he sent us from his full days work.  it is UNREAL. seriously, it's not even feasible how talented he is.  and that was the wrap-up of the morning at the monastery.

Jao and i went back to the hotel, ordered crab & shrimp nachos to eat in our room, and then fell asleep for 45 minutes.  as soon as we woke up, it was time to put my hair up, put my wedding dress on, put my Louboutins on, and run off with Parker to take more pictures.  When we got back, it was time for the ceremonies (Thai and Western)...
talking to the boys before it all starts (dress, J.Crew Bridal. sash, custom)

pep talk and "i love you" before the thai ceremony started.

getting ready to start.

this is probably my favorite picture of the entire Thai ceremony.  this is Bill, jao's roommate from Purdue, and probably my favorite person other than Jao.  it was his turn to come up and give us our blessing, and i don't remember what he said, but Bill never fails to make us laugh, and this picture captures our friendship perfectly.

my longtime friend Tiffany's two little girls, Bianca (left) and Paris (right) were the most perfect flower girls.

:-)  (shoes, Christian Louboutin)

our good friend Alex married us.  he used my Kate Spade clutch as his little clipboard.

my sister was my beautiful Maid of Honor, and Jao's friends Declan and Neil stood for him.

i cried instead of saying my vows.

our friend Max took this.  it's not edited at all...the sky was THAT insane.

"kiss this woman." Alex was the most perfect officiant.

this is seriously untouched.  that sunset wasn't even real life, but it was.

so. the point about my dream when i was six years old...turns out, i really had the wedding i dreamed of as a little girl.  perfect man. beautiful dress. in California. a blazing sunset, with the ocean in the background (just beyond the trees is the ocean). i'm not sure, but i think it's pretty rare to have such a beautiful day, beautiful sunset, and beautiful wedding all happen at once.  

we didn't even know the sky was so beautiful or so perfect.  when we finally turned around after this last picture was taken, we were blown away.  we're not really sure what either of us did in our past lives to deserve finding each other in this one, but i'm very grateful for what i've been given and what i've found in Jao.  my dream wedding is only one day of our enormous lives, and i can't really say this was the best day of my life, because...every morning that i wake up with Jao, it's the best day.  he's perfect, to me.

more on family, friends, dancing, and cake a little later....

(all of these photos are from friends and family (A'Somyot, Jen, Max, Nat) and the one from Parker. thanks to everyone who sent them to us!  more from Parker when they arrive, obvi...)