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Lena and Rick exchange vows at Lake Makintosh

Lena and Rick had originally planned to marry in 2009, but the economic downturn hit their jobs and things had to be postponed indefinitely. In the end, they only had to wait a year and their Lake Makintosh location in Burlington was a perfect setting for the fun and casual wedding they had in mind.

Lena and Rick each wrote beautiful vows to each other and read them from cards. I don’t know how either of them got through it without crying, their words were so touching.


When it came time for the rings to be exchanged, the Flower Girl was to bring them to us and hand them from her pail of flower petals - but the rings had worked their way to the bottom of the pail. She worked so hard to find them, eventually putting all the petals on the floor just to get to the rings. It made for a few tense moments as we all waited to make sure the rings were really in there, but she was so determined to find them and to fully play her part of the ceremony that it made for a very sweet and touching interlude.

After the exchange of rings, we did a Handfasting Ceremony, an ancient Scottish ritual of commitment, adapted for the modern day. When I married Rick’s mother and her husband (a delightful couple!) a few years before, they had used the Handfasting Ceremony, which Rick had loved, and he wanted to include it in his own wedding. Lena made the cord herself, weaving together the symbolic colors of the elements she and Rick planned to incorporate into their marriage; 

Red, for love and passion
Green, for luck and prosperity
Blue, for peace and tranquility
Purple for health, strength and spiritual love 
And white for purity and devotion

You can see the lovely Handfasting cord in this photo (as well as the flower petals the Flower Girl left in her quest for the rings).

After the pronouncement of marriage and the wedding kiss,

the happy couple recessed down the aisle and went outside for photos to take advantage of the beautiful nature setting.

Inside the clubhouse, as things were being readied for the celebration to come, I got a chance to look at all the decorations they had set up;

There were dear family members who were not able to be with us for the ceremony but they were included with the memorial candles in their honor. Here is the lovely presentation Lena and Rick created.

The beautiful cake was made by Lena’s friend since high school, Rachel Lee Stuart, owner of Dessert First.

Here are the cute little wine bottle covers and the flowers that had notes with heart-shaped locks and keys attached.

This is the fun photo wall that was also our backdrop for the ceremony.

Adding to the sense of fun that was in evidence everywhere, look at the special tennis shoes worn by Lena, Rick and the Flower Girl. All were specially ordered in the colors of the day and each had decorations on them appropriate to the celebration. Rick’s were even embroidered with his name!

Notice, too, Lena’s interesting green tulle train she made to pick up the cheery apple green of her colors. You can see it in this photo and in many of the others above. First time I had ever seen that done.

As I was leaving they were heading over to the playground for some photo ops and I just couldn’t resist including this photo of them kissing in the playground... a perfect photo to accent the personalities of two people so much in love.

My thanks to the many friends and family who took all these photos of the wedding and to Lena for putting them on her Facebook page so I could use them here.

My thanks also to Lena and Rick for including me in their special day. I have always said that what makes a wedding great is when the couple put their love and care into it. Lena and Rick have shown unequivocally that you don’t have to have a large budget to showcase love.


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