Love is in the air for this sunny spring wedding with oregon blooms as Kara and her beloved embark on a journey to tie the knot. With the anniversary of their first date etched in their hearts, May 13th holds special significance, marking not just a day of fond memories but also the beginning of a beautiful forever. Against the backdrop of Oregon’s picturesque landscapes, with a love that started in San Diego, Kara and Micah’s dream of a wedding showcases the charm of her hometown and the simplistic yet classic taste with neutral colors like greens, whites, gold, taupe, champagne, cream, and black . With family and friends gathered from far and wide, they created an easy, beautiful and the honestly the best party they had ever thrown for their family and friends, promising a day filled with love, laughter, and cherished moments.

How did you meet?

Micah and I met through the Bumble dating app. We both agreed to meet up sooner rather than later so we wouldn’t waste each other’s time going back and forth through text message to see if this was worth continuing to pursue. We scheduled our date for Sunday, May 13th, 2018 (Mother’s Day) at Kilowatts Brewery in Ocean Beach, San Diego, CA, which is where I lived at the time. I offered to meet at a location that was a halfway point, but I was thrilled Micah was so willing to come meet close to where I lived. This was my first impression of him, someone who would accommodate to me, which is what I would typically do for my partners. Kilowatt’s was walking distance from my place and I remember seeing this tall statured man on the sidewalk waiting to cross the street heading towards the brewery. I said to myself, “that must be him”. In Micah’s Bumble profile, he had stated, “Just your average 6’7” and my witty introduction message to him was, “My kinda average” (probably threw in some emoji’s because I love those things). I am 6’1 and it is challenging to find someone of the proper height so I can wear 4″ heels and still be shorter than my partner. I rarely started conversations with matches because I never knew how to open the conversation, with Micah, it was an easy response! We started at Kilowatt’s then migrated to Culture Brewery. By the time we were ready to move on to the next spot, it was well beyond dinner time. The Mexican place I had in mind was already closed, so we went to a different restaurant only to find out their kitchen was closed. We ended up at the new OB Noodle House location and Micah was extremely appreciative of how I was able to go with the flow and bounce from spot to spot. We had an absolute blast, we both didn’t want the night to end! Might I add, the shirt Micah decided to wear for our first date had a row of tall forest trees with one chopped down with the tag line “Who cut one?” HA! I told him I liked his shirt and he proceeded to ask if I got the joke. I remember laughing and thinking who doesn’t understand that joke? I said, “Of course, it is a fart joke!” We both laughed and he tells me to this day, when my head kicked back from laughing, my smile and the way the sun hit my face, that was the moment he knew he wanted to be with me for as long as I would have him 🙂 I wore a backless summer dress and didn’t bring a sweater, as our original meet up time was 3pm and I had no idea we would be out as late as we were. Micah wrapped his arm around me to help keep me warm, I remember nuzzling into his side and thought to myself, “Wow, I have never felt this small before!”

What is your proposal story?

At this point, Micah and I had been dating for close to 14 months. I had just come back from a two week work trip where I was telling my athletes (I coached club volleyball at the time) he probably wouldn’t ask me to marry him for two more years. Well, two DAYS later, Micah took me to the Hotel Del on Coronado Island in San Diego, CA to have an enjoyable afternoon together since I had been gone for a long period of time. We had a few friends join us for lunch, who even made the comment “We aren’t intruding on anything are we?”. Micah didn’t even know at this time that he was going to pop the question. We encouraged our friends to join and that there was no intrusion. Later that evening, we had plans to have a BBQ with our friend group in Ocean Beach, which is not too far from Coronado Island so we had anticipated spending the whole day out and about. Once we left the hotel to head to the BBQ, Micah pulled over abruptly and I asked if everything was okay with the car, thinking something was wrong. Micah started saying how we share everything with one another and that he couldn’t keep this from me any longer. He began this wonderful sppech about us and I started to cry because his words were so thoughtful and beautiful. He asked if I would spend the rest of my life with him and I said, “YES!” He didn’t have a ring to propose with, as I mentioned before, he had no idea he was going to ask that day. We went to the BBQ, told our friends, popped champagne and had a wonderful evening celebrating with our San Diego family. The friends that joined us at the Hotel Del KNEW they were intruding and we had to convince them we had no idea this was happening nor was it planned. The next day we went to Tiffany’s to try on the style of ring Micah had in mind for me, we didn’t make any purchases that day but it was the beginning of designing the engagement ring together, which we ended up designing his wedding band together as well.

Tell us a little a bit about your wedding

Micah and I got engaged summer of 2019 and our wedding day was May 13th, 2023 (5 years from our first date). We had 4 years to plan this wedding! I knew I didn’t want to partake in many of the traditional wedding aspects. We wanted this event to reflect our personalities and to it keep special for us. We wanted it to be easy, beautiful and the best party we have ever thrown for our family and friends. I appreciated Micah having input and specifics on what he wanted for our event, most of which were food & beverage related. I have a simplistic yet classic taste, I knew I wanted something that would never go out of style. My favorite color is red and Micah looks fantastic in blue, to compliment his baby blue eyes. Those were our “colors” however, they were minimal. We went heavy on the neutral colors, greens, whites, gold, taupe, champagne, cream, and black to compliment the location of where the wedding was. I am a Portland native so we hosted our family and friends in Oregon. We selected Ironlight in Lake Oswego, OR as our venue. Micah loved downtown Lake Oswego when he visited prior to venue shopping. He thought it was clean, tasteful, and easy for out of town guests to navigate. We wanted everyone to enjoy the outdoors as many would be traveling out of state for our wedding, however, we did not want it to have a rustic feel. Ironlight provided the outdoor option with the rooftop terrace with views of Lake Oswego and Mount Hood, and it felt elegant with the floor to ceiling windows and the whimsical chandeliers. Additionally, with a May wedding in Oregon, we knew the risks of a torrential down pour of rain. Ironlight had the ability to move the ceremony indoors if needed. We were fortune enough to be on the other end of the weather possibility with 90 degrees and sunny!

Tell us about your attire choices

My favorite color is red, but with our wedding being in May I needed to soften and limit the bold-vibrant red color due to the seasonal aspect. I went with a “Rust” labeled color dress which appeared to be more on the red-brownish spectrum.To compliment the rust colored dress, I gifted my maids with a combination of pearl and diamond earrings, necklace and bracelet with yellow gold from Brilliant Earth. To tie in the rust colored dress to the wedding colors, the bouquets, centerpieces, and arrangements had toffee roses along with peonies, white roses, ranunculus, anemones, pieris, veronica, eucalyptus, olive and bay in shades of white, taupe and cinnamon with hints of green and blue. They wore gold open toe heels from Sam Edelman. The groomsmen kept it classy with black suits and bow ties from The Black Tux. My father, step father, and brother wore black suits with a black tie from Men’s Warehouse. The mother of the bride wore a latte colored floor length dress with diamond details on the neckline from Ana’s Bridal. The mother of the groom wore a black floor length dress with a bow tie feature that sat perfectly on her hip from Nordstrom. To help Micah standout in the photos, Micah had a tailor made blue suit from Zeglio Custom Clothiers in downtown San Diego, CA. Micah showed Jon a picture of James Bond from Skyfall and told him, “This is what I want”. It was made from light material to assist Micah from overheating and sweating through his suit jacket! It was gorgeous and fit him perfectly. I wore a dress and veil from LUV Bridal in San Diego, CA made by Mia Solano, Sabeel. It was a form fit with a tulle flare skirt and train. I wore Jimmy Choo, Saeda pumps and my mother’s pearl earrings, necklace, and bracelet.  

What was the most important to the two of you while planning? Was there anything that you chose to splurge on or skip?

The most important item for us was to have an OPEN BAR! Ha, we wanted our guests to have fun and let loose. We booked our hotel block at the Lakeshore Inn which is walking distance to the venue. It is no 5 star hotel, but it had a 5 star view of the lake! It was extremely accessible to the surrounding area, which is where we were the entire week. Along with an open bar, we splurged and wanted a catered, full service dinner. We didn’t want people waiting in a line for a buffet style dinner. We had hors d’oeuvres passed out during the cocktail hour, an amuse bouche, salad starter, new york steak, seared sea bass, and chickpea crepe entree options and late night snacks that consisted of mini chicken and waffles topped with bacon and bourbon maple butter and tater tots! It was perfectly timed out, Art of Catering is amazing and Eric does a wonderful job from food to staff in terms of professionalism and presentation. We did not have a traditional wedding cake that we cut together, instead we had a lemon-passion fruit tartlet, double chocolate espresso cookies with espresso shots and milk shots and a vegan chocolate mousse. I would say we skipped out on most of the entertainment items, all I needed was a dance floor and a great playlist. Shawn at Event Team Entertainment loved our 4, yes 4, different playlists for the evening. He was fantastic and the sound throughout the event was incredible. 

What were your favorite parts of the day?

Our favorite part of the day was sitting back during dinner and taking it all in. It was the first time that we were able to sit and relax together. Observing and appreciating all of the planned details that came to life and all of those who were in attendance to celebrate our love!

Tell us about your wedding flowers

My bouquet consisted of a hand tied bouquet of peonies, roses, ranunculus, anemones, eucalyptus, olive, ruscus and sweet peas in shades of white and green with a touch of rust. The bouquet had a fairly symmetrical shape that is full of the soft textures. The stems of the flowers will remain exposed and wrapped in platinum silk ribbon. Micah wore a white rose boutonniere accented with olive and a grey ribbon wrapped stem. The bridesmaids bouquet were a smaller bouquet of peonies, roses, anemones, ranunculus, olive and ruscus in shades of taupe, ochre, white and green. The stems of the flowers will remain exposed and wrapped in taupe silk ribbon. The groomsmen, my brother, father, and stepfather wore a champagne rose boutonniere accented with olive and a grey ribbon wrapped stem. The mothers and grandmothers wore a wrist corsage of champagne roses accented with a cream ribbon bow. The Alter arrangements were delphinium, peonies, roses, viburnum and thistles in shades of white, green, champagne, taupe and blue in white ceramic pots set on clear acrylic pillars on either side of the bride and groom. Smaller versions of the altar arrangements will be set on either side of the start of the aisle. At the guest book table a white ceramic vase was filled with peonies, sweet peas, viburnum, and ranunculus. The smaller alter arrangements were set on each end of the bar. There were two centerpiece arrangements; 1). a low, cream vase was filled with a classic arrangement of peonies, roses, ranunculus, anemones, pieris, veronica, eucalyptus, olive and bay in shades of white, taupe and cinnamon with hints of green and blue. Taupe taper candles in clear glass holders and hurricanes were tucked around the vase along with a few votive candles, 2). three clear glass cylinders in varied heights containing taupe pillar candles were featured on each table. Low tucks of greenery and blooms surrounded the candles. The aisle arrangements will be set on the ground on each side of the sweetheart table. A low, slightly smaller version of the compote centerpieces was set on the table itself along with several votive candles.

Please describe any DIY, handmade, or personal details

There were no DIY or handmade items at the wedding. Instead of a guest book, we had an “Advice and Wishes for the New Mr. & Mrs.” with prompts for guests to fill out for us. Micah and I really enjoyed reading through each one of those the next day! To go along with the Skyfall, James Bond suit, Micah named our cocktails His-MK Ultra (Paloma with Tequila or Mezcal) and Hers-Honeypot (Honey, Whiskey, Ginger). Our seating chart and table numbers were in Roman Numerals and we skipped the number 13, because that is just unlucky! Micah’s mother gifted us two champagne flutes many years ago engraved with the letter “C”. I brought them to Oregon so we could toast with these special flutes on our wedding day. 

Did you include any family heirlooms or special traditions?

Herilooms included my late godfather’s handkerchief and my late maternal grandmother’s fan from Japan. Monsignor Murphy blessed our dinner meal with a special prayer for our Union. It is not a special tradition, however, the father-daughter and mother-son dances both began with a slow tempo song which transitioned into an upbeat dance routine! It was quite the surprise for our guests! We also had two members of our bridal party prepare speeches for the reception. 

Do you have any advice for couples planning their weddings now?

Remember it is your day, your wedding! Do not let the influence of outsiders interject their needs or wants on your event. It can be challenging, especially if those individuals are helping with the costs of the wedding. You have to do what you want and don’t skip out on what you view as important. Your day will be different from family and friend’s weddings and that is okay! Just make sure, come the day of, if things aren’t as you envisioned, let it go and enjoy the fact you are marrying the love of your life! You can laugh about it later, together 🙂 Also, hire a planner! It is well worth it to avoid any of those mishaps and if they do occur, you are not the one that has to deal with it, let alone, know about it! We were and are still extremely grateful for Katy Haley at Bridal Bliss!! We could not have pulled it off with sanity still in tact. 

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