Photographed by Oscar Rajo

Ryan and I met in the fall of 2009, brought together by our mutual love of football. We both  happened to be at my college alumni bar in New York City, and quickly became inseparable. In February 2015, while on vacation in the gorgeous city of Tulum, Mexico. Ryan suggested that we go for a walk on the beach. After a short walk, he suggested that we take a seat to enjoy the stunning sunset. Once completely alone, he popped the question and had arranged a private dinner on the beach later that night. We told our parents, but otherwise we kept our engagement a secret throughout our trip, making it that much more special.

When we began planning our wedding, we both knew that we wanted the wedding to be one thing – fun! Given Ryan is from New Jersey and we went to college in different states, the majority of our friends are sprawled across the country. Having grown up in New Orleans, I knew that I wanted to give them a wedding experience unlike any other.

On our wedding day, the moment of our first look was very special. Looking out onto the Mississippi River and waiting for Ryan to walk out onto the terrace was an anticipation I had never imagined. Turning around and seeing him for the first time on our wedding day was pure happiness, something I will never forget.

We wanted the ceremony to be both personal and romantic. I have always loved candles, and wanted them to surround and illuminate the ceremony space. As I walked down the candlelit aisle, my groom waiting for me at the other end, I had to hold back the tears. After the ceremony, it was important for us to have a few moments to ourselves. It was a gorgeous June night, so we were able to sneak in some sunset photos, and just jump on the bed like exuberant kids! One part of our relationship that I love is that Ryan and I are really just big kids, so we had to have a little fun!

As I always envisioned, the reception quickly shifted gears into a New Orleans party. Topping off the night was our amazing Second Line through the French Quarter. We paraded down Decatur, into the Quarter, ending right on Bourbon St. It was unlike anything our guests had ever experienced. Turning around with the band on one side and all of our family and friends encircling us was a memory that we continue to delight in and a feeling we will never forget. Our night was simply perfect.

“Turning around and seeing him for the first time on our wedding day was pure happiness, something I will never forget.”

Venue: Westin Canal Place | Wedding Planner: Michele Adams of Unique Wedding New Orleans | Bakery: Nikki’s Frosted Fantasies | Décor: New Orleans Candlelight Décor | Florist: Glenda Ivy |
Hair/Makeup: Flawless Bride | Music: Mixed Nuts, Kinfolk Bass Band | Photographer: Oscar Rajo | Videographer: Studio Vieux Carre | Invitations: Designs by Pam Cantor | Honeymoon/Travel: Cape Town, South Africa. The Winelands, Safari | Bridal Attire: Anne Barge | Groom’s Attire: Theory | Bridesmaid Attire: Amsale