Savannah’s future mother-in-law and sister-in-law, Laurie and Katie DeMayo host an elegant tea in honor of Savannah.
The ladies hosted the bridal shower tea in the DeMayo home in Ligonier, Pennsylvania. Mostly local friends and family attended the shower. Chris’ (groom-to-be) out-of-town aunts traveled from New Jersey for the tea as well. Savannah’s future father-in-law toasted Savannah to kick-off the party, despite a ladies only tea.
Chris also made an appearance at the end of the party with a lovely bouquet of flowers that he presented to Savannah – so sweet!
A close friend of Laurie’s loaned her the tea set for the day. It was an exquisite National Wildlife Society set. Laurie and Katie served sandwiches and desserts along with an array of teas, champagne and wine. Potted geranium plants accompanied each place setting and served as the favors for guests to take home. Along with the geraniums were specialty soaps with a label,
“From Savannah’s Shower to Yours”.
Party hosts and bridesmaids organized several games for the guests to play. First, there was an over/under game where party-goers guessed facts about the bride. Next, the ladies played a wedding themed Mad Libs game. The group voted on the best and the funniest entries to award the winners. In more modern terms, the party played a wedding emoji decoding game while they also played the traditional what’s in your purse game.
Savannah was a little uneasy being the center of attention while unveiling her gifts. She and Chris received many items from the bridal registry. Savannah tells us she truly appreciates how every guest added special additions, creativity and greeting cards to each gift as well.
Everyone is excited as the wedding date inches closer and closer!
One year after Chris proposed to Savannah, they decided to shoot their own engagement photos. They sought a natural, casual and romantic look for the special sitting.
Chris is a photographer and was excited to try out his profesional selfie skills! The engagement photos were taken in Autumn to reflect the time of year they first got engaged. They agreed Presque Isle State Park was the perfect choice due to its picturesque landscape and the opportunity to create art. It too is the spot where Chris proposed, making it an even more splendid spot for their engagement shoot.
Most pictures were shot at Beach 8 at the State Park. The blog cover shot is a romantic introspection of Savannah and Chris with the brilliant beach-water gleaming. The couple’s beauty shines through and elegantly complements the natural backdrop on each and every photograph.
A magnificent historic Light house is shown in the background of this photograph.
The next photograph shows a fun side and sheer joy they share when together. It is set next to one of the inlets at Beach 8. The final shot symbolizes their love for one another and the future path they will embark upon together.
I believe the photos turned out amazing!
Stay tuned to learn more about this devoted couple’s storybook wedding journey. Chris and Savannah will exchange vows and celebrate at Quincy Cellars, August 12, 2017.
Chris is an art teacher and a hobby of his is photography. Every month Savannah and Chris travel somewhere interesting together for a photo shoot. So, when Chris suggested to Savannah they go to Presque Isle Saturday, September 19, 2015, she agreed.
However, when Saturday arrived, it was raining! Chris insisted it was just misty and would still be a nice photo opportunity. Again, Savannah agreed, thinking it was their usual photo date. She freshly applied her make-up and put on an outfit appropriate for a Fall shoot.
Not long after getting to the park, Chris snagged a nice spot for the photo opp. The setting was a picnic area, off the West Pier Boat Launch. Depending on where the subjects stand, the water and/or the city could be in the background. Once they were settled, Chris handed Savannah a photo album full of pictures from all the photography dates they had had since they started dating in 2009…
Chris went on to say, “all of these photos are special because they make up all the photo dates before we got ENGAGED”.
He proceeded to get down on one knee to propose– and Savannah said, “Yes!”. Chris presented Savannah with an exquisite emerald-cut yellow gold engagement ring. Savannah finds the ring very special because Chris took such care finding a ring just to her liking. She tells us now she is so in love she would have said yes even without a ring!
Chris also planned the day so that a few close friends were present. Savannah’s sister, Athena, her then fiancé Derek, and Savannah’s best friend, Michelle were all hiding in the bushes, watching the proposal go down! Derek was even able to snap pictures of the moment!
After the friends and family showed themselves, they celebrated with champagne. It was quite a photo shoot, despite the rain!
Katie and Matt choose to center their wedding day around the powerful feeling that brings them together every day – Love…
Wedding Ceremony Music
A Thousand Years by Piano Guys will play when Katie makes her bridal entrance. The Piano Guys are a piano and cello duo who cover this romantic and melodious song often played at weddings because it is so lovely. The top pop hit came out in 2011 on Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn’s soundtrack performed by Christina Perri and written by David Hodges and Perri. The lyrics are as beautiful as the melody. The last verse says it all expressing,
And all along I believed I would find you
Time has brought your heart to me
I have loved you for a thousand years
I’ll love you for a thousand more
Once the bride and groom are officially Mr. and Mrs., Make You Mine by High Valley will play. High Valley is a relatively new country duo that sings this catchy tune. The female character in the song is a Sunday Morning Hallelujah. A fitting song as we know Katie is that sweet.
Wedding Reception Music
Party Rock Anthem by LMFAO will pump up the party as the bridal party enters. (By the way, if you haven’t seen this video, you should check it out. It is an experience. Do note, it has explicit parts but it also has well over 1 billion views on Vevo!)
Katie keeps up tradition with having the bouquet and garter toss – Wanna Be by the Spice Girls will be spun by the DJ during the bouquet toss. (Yes, the 1996 hit performed by Scary, Sporty, Baby, Ginger and Posh – there is a video remake that was released this year).
Def Leopard’s Pour Some Sugar on Me will play during the ceremonious garter removal. From the Ground Up by Dan + Shay will kick off the couple’s first ever dance as husband and wife (#ACoupleofBucks). Dan + Shay are another male country duo who know how to tug at your heart strings. From the Ground up is a beautiful composition the team created to show the love their respective grandparents had for each other (each set was married over 65 years) and the personal love each holds for his wife.
Katie chose a couple verses she finds meaningful and will use for her vows. Susan Polis Schutz is the author of Love Is and it starts out with:
Love is being happy for the other person
when they are happy
being sad for the other person
when they are sad
being together in good times
and being together in bad times
Love is the source of strength
Last Minute Wedding Day Details and Excitement
If you are wondering what Katie has been doing these last few days and how she is feeling – she had her last gown fitting Wednesday and final meeting with the DJ. Yesterday she got her nails done…and this morning is setting up at Quincy Cellars! She tells us,
I don’t know when it’s going to feel real!!!! I am so excited!
Keeping it Trendy
Katie and Matt finished their own vows just last weekend. Personal vows are the trendy way to go now. The bride and groom usually follow something similar to traditional faith-based vows but want to create their own words and phrasing – that way it feels more personal and genuine. Katie and Matt agreed it was hard to get started. However, once they got rolling and saw lots of examples, it was easy. Katie went on Pinterest and found many guides to help. The two worked independently and made sure the respective vows are similar in length. Katie is super excited to profess personal vows and says, “I think I am going to cry like a baby!!”
They worked together to pick out readings that will be part of the ceremony. Again, brides and grooms loosely follow the faith-based format of a wedding and like to choose modern verses that are a mix of faith-based and secular prose for each part. Readings are a representation of the couple’s personal story.
Katie made a Snapchat geofilter for the wedding. The geofilter is a fun touch for her friends who use Snapchat. A snapchat geofilter is a graphic that anyone can create to use as an overlay for photos, videos and moments. The geofilter is limited to a time and place and so if a Snapchat user is at that time and place (Katie and Matt’s wedding weekend) and wants to post on Snapchat, they may use the geofilter as part of the post. It is a visual way for Snapchat users to quickly recognize and search for anything related to Katie and Matt’s wedding event. Sweet.
And remember their hashtag #acoupleofbucks. The hashtag is another trendy touch for friends, family and wedding guests. Everyone is encouraged to use the hashtag to tag and search all wedding-related posts across social media and the web.
Seating Chart and DeeJay
Katie thankfully found her seating chart to be a relatively easy process and recently finished it. She heard horror stories about completing them but states she was able to piece hers together perfectly!
She will have a traditional processional and recessional for the ceremony as well as a grand entrance to the reception and bouquet toss. The DeeJay will play music for all these moments. Katie was tasked to find the right song for each. She found this task challenging. Creating the song with just the right feeling, tempo and lyrics was harder than she expected. Again, she referred to Pinterest for tons of suggestions.
Katie and Matt have chosen a wonderful blend of new and old to make for a very special storybook day. And we cannot say it enough how excited we at Quincy Cellars are to be part of it! See you this weekend!
Matt’s bachelor party will be a classic one – a Buffalo Bills game outing!
Matt’s friends and family truly know him – he is a number one fan! With amazing Fall weather, Matt and his 4 groomsmen camped out last night near Bradford and are headed to the game. The Bills are on a 3 game winning streak and play the San Francisco 49ers at 1 p.m., today, October 16 at New Era Cap stadium in Orchard Park. It will prove to be a day to remember!
The tailgate will be pretty basic for Matt who isn’t into frills. Lots of chips and dip, cheese puffs and hot dogs with a trunk full of Miller Lite. If watching or streaming, look for the soon-to-be groom and his buddies decked out in Bills gear! Their seats are in the tunnel end-zone right behind the goal post. The seats are prime for cheering the Bills entrance. And, hey – maybe they will get to see End-zone Elvis.
Katie recently messaged me. “I literally can’t even believe our wedding is less than two weeks away!!!! It doesn’t even seem real!!!!”
So What is Katie Up To?
She and her mother recently had a salon run-through and she completed plans for the wedding-day breakfast. Katie is thrilled she chose Panache in Erie to prep for her special day. The stylist and make-up artist were both very nice and as excited for Katie’s day as she. In Katie’s words,
“My salon appointment was amazing and the salon is absolutely gorgeous inside!!” Once the appointment was done Katie and her mom were teary-eyed, feeling beautiful.
On her wedding morning all seven bridesmaids, her mother and flower girl will accompany Katie at Panache to get ready for this storybook day. Katie will order bagels, muffins and mimosa ingredients in advance from the Giant Eagle next door to Panache. That morning the Panache wedding-day coordinator will pick up the order and prepare for the bridal party. Fantastic!
Wedding Day Rehearsal
The rehearsal will be Friday evening at Quincy Cellars. Event coordinator, Amy, will be hustling around assuring all vendors, kitchen and wine cellar staff have what they need. She will also guide Katie, Matt and their close friends and family through what to expect on the wedding day. Before the day’s end, Amy will confirm all details are in order.
To fit their laid-back style, Katie and Matt decided on a casual Italian meal at Calamari’s in Erie for the rehearsal dinner. Lasagna and a sausage, peppers and onion sandwich will be served along with a salad, mixed vegetables, meat and cheese and fruit trays and rolls. Delish. The bridesmaids, groomsmen and their significant others, grandparents, aunts and uncles are invited to the intimate gathering.
In addition to the meal, Matt and Katie will present a gift to each member of the wedding party in appreciation for their friendship and participation in wedding festivities and their marriage. Katie’s girls will receive something they may use the wedding day morning while Matt’s guys will wish they had theirs at his bachelor party (by the way, that is coming up this Sunday!). Very thoughtful.
I sat down with Quincy Cellars owner and master chef, Kevin Daughrity, to find out why the food he serves at Quincy Cellars and Sensory Winery & Art Gallery is so extraordinary? if he considers himself a foodie – and what does that mean? and, the vision for his hospitality business? I gathered volumes from him and share a few insights today.
Most interesting to me is that Kevin is self-taught. Kevin became bored with college food and so cooking for himself and his college buddies became a practical and creative outlet. Food is still a passion of his, constantly honing his art, in addition to the creative license with cooking, Kevin likes the instant feedback – a quick sampling or a deep inhale gives him quick feedback about whether or not the direction he’s going is appealing or not. To dig a little deeper, Kevin loves to explore flavor combinations and trends – for instance he makes an all-time American favorite, macaroni and cheese, from scratch. For a twist, he includes a variety of fresh herbs and a blend of non-traditional cheeses, giving the dish new life with amazing rich flavor.
I asked Kevin what his favorite meal was and showing he truly is a foodie, he could not pin one down – he says what he likes best is the unabridged experience – and expects a complete celebration, no matter what the occasion or setting. Being served a 4-course gourmet meal at a fine restaurant with the perfect pairing of wine is pure enjoyment for him. Kevin also says that firing up the grill savoring a flavorful burger with a fresh homemade roll and kicking back with a craft beer is just as pleasing.
Check out future blog posts for more wisdom from Kevin like his secret to creating fantastic meals and vision for his business.
Katie is busy with planning the details for her big day and has found herself fretting lately – with all the big decisions made, she is finding that it is the little decisions and tasks that are a bear. And to top that off, she is most concerned about one item she cannot change – the weather! October 22 is a bit of a gamble on the shores of Lake Erie so please join us in sending in good vibes to her for that day!
The bridal shower is scheduled for August 22 and so the guest list and design for the bridal shower invitation are top-of-mind for Katie right now with the date fast approaching. Her aunt is hosting the shower in Sherman with an artsy theme. The bride-to-be and guests will be guided through creating their very own painting! Her aunt is calling the day, “Brushes with the Bride” – trendy and fun!
Katie is also getting the wedding day guest list together which for most brides can be exhausting. The good news is the guest list is often the most challenging task of all! Here are a couple articles on etiquette and simplifying the task. Real simple offers 6 tips on creating a list and keeping the peace while The Knot suggests a few simple rules.
Selecting the ring for Matt is on Katie’s upcoming to-do list and Matt has yet to pick out the tuxes for the groomsmen. More tasks include finalizing decorations for the ceremony to be held in the pavilion – and again, with some concern – in her words, “you cannot see it all tied together until the night before/day of when it is completed so it is hard to decide!” She is renting some of her decorations from Special Occasions Rentals & Design and plans to have her order buttoned up soon.
A plus for Katie is she is finding all the vendors (and especially Amy at Quincy Cellars!) to be very patient, helpful and insightful which is putting her at ease.
See you next time to discover together more decisions to be made and details to be planned!
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- An Extraordinary Wedding Day for Savannah and Chris August 15, 2017
- Savannah and Chris Host Rehearsal Dinner at Quincy Cellars August 10, 2017
- Savannah’s Bachelorette Party in Pittsburgh August 7, 2017
- Chris and the Boys Bachelor Weekend August 5, 2017
- Bridal Shower Tea Held in Honor of Savannah July 29, 2017