Best. Day. Ever.

June 9, 2017. Our Wedding Day. The Best Day Ever.

Where do I even begin. 

I was never one of those girls who dreamt of a big, beautiful wedding all of my life. I only ever dreamt of marrying my best friend. Believe it or not, David was actually the one who requested that we even have a wedding! The one thing I was certain of was that I wanted it to be a short engagement. Because when you know- you know. So why wait!? When we first got engaged back in January, we could not make up our minds on how we wanted to tie the knot. Do we make a quick stop at the courthouse? Do we have a small destination wedding? Where would we even do it? How big? How small?

There are so many questions + details that go into planning a wedding. I had no idea! Not to mention the amount of preparation + refining I needed in my heart. 

Soon after we got engaged, we went to Charlotte to celebrate with family and friends. For a girl who never dreamt of her fairytale wedding... I was quick to go dress shopping! It was a Sunday when we landed in CLT and all of the bridal boutiques were closed but my best friend, Anita (and also my maid of honor), found a few that happened to be open. My mom, Anita, and I had some good laughs that day. For some reason, neither of them could take me seriously in a wedding dress and all of these princess gowns were hysterical on me. I had never worn a big ball gown! 

I knew that when I found the dress I would know what kind of wedding I'd want to have- because I would be able to picture myself walking down that aisle to that handsome face. Heart melts. A few days later, I found THE DRESS! It was a custom skirt that we turned into a dress and it was exactly what I pictured. Different, but classic, kind of funky, had a little sass, would maybe surprise some people, even David... I loved it. And so did my mom. 

So, thanks to my dress- we decided to have a wedding! My mom was a hero the next few months. I mean, she's always been my hero. But you have no idea how much time, effort, tears, you name it- she gave this wedding her all. We are both very creative, we love design and are incredibly detail oriented + also huge bargain hunters, so we figured we could handle this wedding on our own without a planner. Sheeeesh!! Planning a wedding is a full-time job! My mom took care of every single detail, down to the hand-stamped forks we ate our wedding cake with. We had a vision and she made it happen. I am so grateful for my amazing parents who gave us our dream wedding. Even more grateful for the high standards they set for marriage + family. 

Because of their legacy I never settled + married my BEST FRIEND who I adore and admire and can't even imagine a day without.

Yesterday when I asked what you guys wanted to read about, I had many messages about our relationship, how we met, our testimony. I won't go into all of those details on the wedding post right now, but I had this revelation over our engagement that I thought I'd share. Back in March, I wrote this quote in my notes on my phone. I don't even remember where I heard it but I go back to it often. 

"A champion wants his greatest match to be his greatest battle."

 For me, my greatest medals I'll ever wear will be the one with a title "WIFE" and the other (I pray one day) will be titled "MOM". In order to win a medal you have to go to battle, right? I always heard marriage wasn't easy- it's going to be the never-ending battle of your lifetime. Unfortunately my parents always made it look incredibly easy so I never believed anyone when they told me this. But, I do understand that a good marriage takes WORK! Throughout our engagement, I realized that marriage was going to be my greatest match. My greatest battle with myself, the enemy, sometimes David, outsiders... 

You don't want to go into the greatest match of your lifetime against somebody who is just going to give up- you want to win with a fighter. I don't know if this is making any sense, but it does to me, so here's to hoping! I kept going back to this quote. I realized that I wanted to fight it out with David. I knew that I wanted to win this battle with him. We actually fight pretty well together. We fight for each other everyday. We definitely fought through hard times during our engagement- and I knew that I would never fight for anyone else the way I fight for him. And vice-versa. 

Fast forward to the week leading up to our wedding. David, Winnie and I drove from Dallas to Charlotte. We love our road trips and always end up making some of our favorite memories on them. Side story: David actually named Winnie on one of our road trips back to Dallas- she was a few months old and we could not decide on a name!!! (I am seeing a trend....) Until we were playing outside of a gas station in the-middle-of-nowhere-Georgia when David said, "How about Winnie!?". So, that's how she became Winnie! OK, back to the wedding.

I am bouncing around a lot because it's my first time writing a blog in a while! Sorry about it!! 

Just days before our wedding my passport got lost- long story short, we applied for Brazil visas and had to send in our passports to get them. They sent me back the wrong passport! I also was at alterations up until 2 days before our wedding trying on my dress. My mom was running all over town- picking up, dropping off, last minute details... it felt like there was so much left to do!! Everyone had us prepare for the worst: we knew that there was a chance of rain, something was bound to go wrong!! But David and my mom both kept faith through it all- "it's going to be perfect." And it was. 

The night before our wedding, David's mom threw us a beautiful rehearsal dinner. We ate mexican, drank margaritas and were toasted with the sweetest speeches by family. It was so special to have our two families together in my home town. That night we parted ways until the next time we'd see each other at the altar! I went back home with my parents and slept in my old room. My brother was home from California and we had the original crew of four back together. I was on my knees for most of the night- I was a hot mess that week being the procrastinator and perfectionist that I am (two things that do not go pair well together!) and basically begged for peace and the holy spirit to be with me on our wedding day. God showed up + showed out per usual.

Then it was here. Our WEDDING DAY!!!!!!!! 

6:00 am 

I woke up + hung out with my parents. Painted our welcome sign. (day of... leave it to me)

It's HERE!!!!! It was like Christmas morning.

10:00 am

Packed my wedding day + getaway bags. We stayed in uptown Charlotte for two nights after our wedding before we left for our honeymoon! 

12:00 pm

Drove out to Morning Glory Farm with my mom and Winnie! The car was completely stuffed with boxes, chairs, bags, food, everything!!! My dad had his truck filled with stuff as well. There was lots of setting up to do! I could barely fit in the car. We walked around the farm and I had my Mary moment- sitting under the cross that we were about to say our vows in front of, alone, worshipping. Hallelujah.

MadisonDavidWedding0196.jpg

1:00 pm

It was just me on the farm. I wrote my letters to David, Anita, and my flower girls. Blasting my "bride" worship playlist. I was a BRIDE!!! It didn't hit me until that day. Everyone always told me... soak it in, be a bride. Love every moment of it. But I didn't feel like a BRIDE until this day.

1:30 pm

David sends me a video via text. It was a video of Ferlander, my favorite little boy from Haiti who makes me the happiest. I adore this boy. David knows the way to my heart. For the next 4 hours, David texted me a video -every 30 minutes- of my very favorite friends in Haiti congratulating + sending love on our big day. How sweet + thoughtful is he???? I cried every 30 minutes on the dot. 

2:00 pm

Hair + makeup began! I was the luckiest girl in the world because one of my best friends, Sabrina, also happens to be an incredibly talented hair + makeup artist. She is AMAZING!!! And she has the most cheerful, kind, gentle spirit about her. She was exactly what I needed on this day. Because I didn't have bridesmaids, it was just Anita, Sabrina, and I hanging! Anita was my rock throughout this whole wedding process- she is the ying to my yang. I couldn't have done it without her. Or everything would be in shambles. Or lost.

4:00 pm

Bridal portraits with our amazing photographer, Allison Kuhn. I definitely fought her on this one. I am a freak and didn't want anyone to see me in my dress except for my mom, dad, and brother before I walked down the aisle. Allison told me that I would regret it if I didn't get these shots, and she was right!! I am so glad I listened to her and suited up for these photos before I said I do. Allison is so talented. 

MadisonDavidWedding0409 (1).jpg

5:00 pm

My flower girls arrived!!!! Each of these girls played a huge role in my life. They hold a piece of my heart. My little sunshines. Plus, Winnie was really happy to have some friends.

 I even got some wedding slime!

I even got some wedding slime!

6:00 pm

OMG. It's about to go down. For real. What!!!!!!!!! Our day-of coordinator (who was also amazing) brought over a letter and a gift from David. Cue more tears. I cried a lot on this day. All HAPPY tears!!!! Tears of pure joy.

6:15 pm

Everyone was in my room. All 7 of the flower girls, 2 baby ring bearers, moms, friends, photo, video, the whole squad. I about had a panic attack and had to go hide in the bathroom. Listened to my music to try and pull it together when my sweet Sabrina came in to pray over me. So thankful for that moment. The pressure! I really do not enjoy being the center of attention and all of those emotions were about to flood- but Anita calmed me down and I got dressed.

MadisonDavidWedding0149.jpg

6:30 pm

My dad and brother showed up to my suite. It was just our original 4 Sadri's again. What a sweet moment. We were late to the altar but it didn't even matter because I wanted to enjoy those final moments with my family. Oh how I love them so much. We took a golf cart ride to the altar like we did back in the day on our beach trips. It was such a special moment that went by in a flash.

6:35 pm

Holy Moly. There he is. My groom. Wow. Walking down the aisle with my dad will be a moment that I will never forget. The greatest moment of my life so far. A moment that I waited for and prayed fervently for. A moment of God's faithfulness. It was definitely the closest to heaven I have ever been- that walk was truly magical.

Our flower girls walked to "Somewhere Over The Rainbow" sung + strung by my new brother-in-law, Daniel. You must watch our wedding video just to hear his voice!! 

I walked to "Beautiful Things" sung by our awesome friend Cole Massey who led worship in Haiti for David and I. David wanted this to be a complete surprise, so when he heard the first chord of that song he knew his bride was on her way. I chose this song because it has been a constant reminder of beauty in dark places throughout the years, plus David always tells me that I have a gift of finding and seeing beauty where others don't. So I wanted to surprise him with that. He told me to WORK IT! All week he said, all I want is for you to walk down that aisle with all of the confidence in the world- because this is YOUR DAY! You're the star! Work it! It was so sweet. I tried. 

6:40 pm

Our close friend, David's mentor Mike, married us. He was in Haiti when David and I were both there back in January 2016, neither of us were looking for a relationship or even considered liking each other, but Mike called it! He even put my name in his phone as Madison Nelson before we ever started dating (I never knew this until we were engaged!!). Mike and his beautitful wife Shenna have walked through some muddy times with us, they've encouraged us and stood by us when we needed it. It was so special to have him officiate our wedding and call us "one". 

We took a moment to worship during our ceremony, Cole strung Good Good Father for our guests to sing along. Shenna made her way to the altar and they took that moment to pray over David and I and our marriage. What a beautiful moment it was. 

7:00 pm

I NOW PRONOUNCE YOU HUSBAND AND WIFE! 

We're MARRIED!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 

David and I love 'The Office' so of course we had to pull a Pam + Jim and walk back down the aisle to "Forever" by Chris Brown. My sweet flower girl, Emery, who I watched for 5+ years ran up to hug me when the song started. It was an emotional moment for me seeing her so emotional! I pray that our flower girls will remember our wedding, our joy, and our love. It was so special to have them there to witness our wedding and vows!

Best part?! She even walked down the aisle with us holding my hand. 

8:00 pm

David and I entered our reception with the 1990's Chicago Bulls Starting Lineup Intro. HA! That was David's ONLY request!! He likes to have fun.

Our first dance was "From The Ground Up" by Dan + Shay. It has been 'our song' since we first started dating. I used to listen to it while we were long distance and pictured us swinging to our first dance... only in my wildest dreams! Happy, HAPPY day.

My dad and I planned a secret dance to surprise everyone- mostly David because he knows I DO NOT LIKE to dance!! Especially in front of a crowd! And also because he is in remission and we had a lot to celebrate over this past year. Praise God! 

One of my mom's best friends, Meg, is a dance instructor so she choreographed our dance more than a month before our wedding! My dad practiced his juju all day in the kitchen. It was hysterical. 

And then we partied all night long!!! It was the best day of my life. I might be biased, but it was my favorite wedding I've ever been to. Andddd now I have one hot, kind, hilarious husband who leads me well everyday. 

#herecomethenelsons!! 

Here are a few of our favorite photos by the amazing Allison Kuhn Photography:

Invitations + paper details: Champagne Maker

Hair + Makeup: Sabrina Laine of Be Pretty

Dress: Erin Grey Couture

Flowers: Bookout Blooms + my God Mother who saved the day!!! Vicki Swisher

Venue: Morning Glory Farm

Any other questions about details, feel free to contact me!! XO

Videographer: Cara Martin (who we adore!!!)