My Little Girl's Vintage Wedding

December Twenty-first, my only daughter became Mrs. Andrew Birkinsha. As any mother would, I wanted all her dreams of a beautiful wedding to come true. What we lacked in cash, we more than made up for in resources. I have nine sisters and each of them are full of talents. Oh, and my mom has become an expert at putting on weddings (Did I mention I have nine sisters? That she created spectacular weddings for.)

So coordinating a wedding long distance became a breeze with the support team we have in one another. And Pinterest. We simply had to pin/show my sibs what Alannah wanted and they went to work. One sister (Kim) took a class long ago in cake decorating, so she made a stunning cake. Another (Alysha) made the most beautiful vintage bouquet. Another sister (Mac) went above and beyond to replicate the most gorgeous veil I've ever seen. And not just one, but two, so Alannah could have her pick. Yet another (Heather) created a beautiful guest book. And they all pitched in with getting the gym cleaned out, lit, and ready for a reception, bringing soups and other entrees to feed the guests. And my mom altered the dress, made the flowers, and basically worked her magic to bring order out of what could have been chaos.

I'm truly truly blessed with a wonderful family. All I had to do was show-up. Which come to think of it, is what I did 25 years ago for my own wedding. Hmm. I kind of think I'm the least helpful in my family, yet gain the most benefit. Score! (Shhh, I didn't really say that.)

To be honest, I knew it would turn out beautiful because I trusted my family. My main concern was getting through the ceremony. You see, since my son passed away 3 years ago, I have a difficult time keeping the weeping to a minimum. Seriously, I get going and the waterworks will not stop. And it's not the lovely one lone tear sliding down the cheek Demi Moore style of crying. It's full blown gushing, snotty, red eyes, ugly and gross. I avoid sentimental events like the plague and I'm sure all those who don't want to witness a blubbering spectacle appreciate it even if they don't know what they have missed. I'm not exaggerating. And I sure didn't want to become the center stage mother of the bride weeper.

So believe it or not, the past couple of months I've fasted and prayed about that. Please, please don't let me blubber through the wedding. And you know what. I caught a cold. I was so concerned about not having a coughing fit and keeping my mouth dry and how I could sneak a cough drop while everyone was watching that the tears were kept to a minimum. Not exactly how I would have answered my own prayers, but it worked.

Enough of that, enjoy some pictures...

Alannah Autrey vintage bridal photographs
Alannah Autrey~Vintage Gown
Alannah and I are very close, have always been. I don't know how I got so lucky to have a daughter who shares everything with me. Okay, she didn't share when she snuck out of the house when she was 16 until a few years later, but mostly everything. She's a good kid and an amazing person. She's always known what she's wanted and gone after her dreams. When she told me she had met the right guy, there wasn't any doubt that Andrew had to be someone pretty special because Alannah would never settle for just anybody.

She also knew what she wanted in a wedding dress. Something elegant, vintage, and extremely unique. When I flew out to help her find it, I was seriously having some doubts that such a unicorn of a dress existed. That's where prayer came in again. The second morning of our search, we prayed this time, had a thought to go to a store that we weren't considering because the dresses were way out of budget, walked in and Spencer, our wonderful helper listened to what we wanted, bypassed the typical gowns and pulled this off the rack. I knew it was the right one by the look on Alannah's face. 
Alannah and Andrew's vintage wedding announcement
The Wedding Announcement (Which I actually made~hey, I did contribute something!)
Alannah's table setting for wedding reception
Table Settings

Bridal gown hanger with message
This is a hanger Alannah made in her Young Women's Youth Group years ago. The little plague talks about how they'll remain pure until their wedding day and can will keep this as a reminder to hang their Temple dress upon it. 

Guest book for vintage wedding reception
Guest Book (ended up with a few extra guests written in like Thor and Wonder Woman~My family are all nuts.)

Vintage wedding bouquet
The Bouquet
Alannah and Andrew kissing and showing engagement ring
The Ring

Wedding snow boots
The boots

Bride and groom table setting
Table Setting
Draper Utah Temple
The Place~Draper Utah Temple
secret message wedding cake
The Cake
Kim wrote secret messages into the scrollwork on the bottom layer, such as Happy Birthday to my sister JJ, and other "love messages between Alannah and Andrew."
Alannah and Andrew outside temple
The Groom ~ Andrew Carl Birkinsha
(pronounced Bir-kin-shay)
Couldn't ask for a sweeter son-in-law

Birkinsha family
The Birkinsha Family.
Was nervous meeting them, but they turned out to be lovely, down-to-earth, funny, kind, chill, intelligent people. I'm so happy Alannah has some great in-laws.

Alannah and Andrew outside Draper Temple doors

Thanks for sharing in our Joy and hope to see all our Texan friends and family for the reception in January! 

The Offering

offeringThe Offering by Kimberly Derting

True love—and world war—is at stake in the conclusion to The Pledge trilogy, a dark and romantic blend of dystopia and fantasy.

Charlie, otherwise known as Queen Charlaina of Ludania, has become comfortable as a leader and a ruler. She’s done admirable work to restore Ludania’s broken communications systems with other Queendoms, and she’s mastered the art of ignoring Sabara, the evil former queen whose Essence is alive within Charlie. Or so she thinks.

When the negotiation of a peace agreement with the Queendom of Astonia goes awry, Charlie receives a brutal message that threatens Ludania, and it seems her only option is to sacrifice herself in exchange for Ludanian freedom.

But things aren’t always as they seem. Charlie is walking into a trap—one set by Sabara, who is determined to reclaim the Queendoms at any cost.

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Praise for The Offering

"This was a truly epic ending to the series." --Crystal Perkins, Goodreads Review

"The final book in Kimberly Derting’s Pledge trilogy is a thrilling conclusion. I was immediately swept up into it and powered right through. It was pretty much what I wanted with a few surprises along the way." --Krys at Bibliopunkk Reads

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Pledge Trilogy


kimberly dertingAuthor Kimberly Derting

Kimberly Derting is the author of the BODY FINDER series, THE PLEDGE trilogy, and THE TAKING (coming April 2014 from HarperTeen). She lives in the Seattle area, with her husband and three children, who often find the outrageous things they say either in the pages of her books or posted on Twitter or Facebook for the entire world to see.


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