Atlanta And BeyondAmanda
Atlanta & beyondest. 2009

Intimate Holiday Wedding At Home | Jackie and Quynh

Today I want to tell you the story of Jackie and Quynh’s intimate at-home New Year’s Eve wedding on a cold and snowy day in Virginia. Jackie and Quynh have been together for more than fifteen years. They have two wonderful children, a beautiful home, and a big fluffy dog. But they never imagined they would be married. And they certainly never thought they would have a wedding. In fact, their intention was to have a civil ceremony with just their children in attendance.

But much to their joyful surprise, upon learning of their decision to be married, family and friends insisted they have an actual wedding celebration. Quynh says, “Barely 30 days before the wedding, we got our marriage license.  Only then did we realize that a ceremony must take place within 60 days and certified by a licensed officiant.  We made a quick decision to have it done on New Year’s Eve, again, in order to make it low-key and coinciding with a common holiday celebration.  As we informed our family of this low-key intention, something special emerged.  We started to have immediate input from family members on details that kept growing and growing.  Apprehensive parents were informed and invited; ecstatic close friends joyfully accepted our invitation; gowns were selected and purchased in one day; rings another; countless other details threatened to overwhelm.  And overwhelmed we were, but not with the details of the day but with our burst of emotional joy.  A beautiful wedding with all family and closest of friends was our final product.”

And so, with the help of some very loving family members, they planned their wedding in a matter of weeks. Jackie says, “This wedding was so very special to us, as we kept it all in the family, for the most part, and to have it in our home, among all our families and close friends.   My sister-in-law, Alice, and Quynh’s sister, Tien, planned the entire event and did all the decorations and flowers.  My older sister, Lisette, who owns a Vietnamese restaurant, did the food catering, which was so elegantly displayed and delicious.  My younger sister, Loan, made the beautiful 3-tier rustic cake; and her husband, who has a PhD in optical imaging (overqualified?), was the videographer.”

As one of the few people at this wedding who wasn’t a family member or close friend, I feel very honored to have been asked to be a part of this amazing day. In fact, I’m struggling to find the words to describe what a perfect day it was. And I certainly have no words to describe how warmly I was welcomed into their home and how everyone made me feel like family. Thank you all from the bottom of my heart for all your kindness, and congratulations Jackie and Quynh and Marin and Jack (and you too Mack!).

Amanda Summerlin
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