I took the opportunity to spend some time in Boston and Cambridge the weekend of Cecilia and Lou's wedding, making it a family event by driving down with my sister, Jackie, and staying with my brother, Ed, in the North End. We began eating almost the minute we got there on Saturday, starting with pizza and beer, and ending with it, too (minus the beer), since I snacked on a leftover slice on the way home Sunday night. We also went to the reception location Saturday afternoon, a restaurant called West Bridge, and had some very delicious cocktails. I considered it "research" for the following day.
I have been excited to meet these two for some time, especially after a Skype session where they got to meet my cat, who I hadn't even noticed was walking back and forth behind me on the chair I was seated in. Finally Lou said, "And who is that?" and then asked me at the wedding if she was coming too! Both he and Cecilia were just as lovely and funny in person, and I felt inspired to be shooting outside of my usual (and much beloved) bucolic Maine tromping grounds. Their ceremony was in a beautiful courtyard surrounded by trees and a wrought iron fence that felt very tucked away from the streets and traffic beyond. After some fun portraits along the Charles, these two hosted a luxurious, multi-course dinner at West Bridge where their guests were treated to such courses as "Eggs in a Jar" (a poached duck egg served in a small jar with hen of the woods mushrooms, pomme puree, and crispy duck skin). Dinner lingered into the evening as the sun set, with heartwarming and hilarious toasts carrying through until a bit of dancing at the end of the night.
I had a lovely time, Cecilia and Lou, thank you so much for having me! I'll tell my kitty you say hello ;)
How they met, in Cecilia's words:
I first "met" Lou in the late spring of 2010 on the website OKCupid. I
use quotation marks because I saw his profile first and messaged him
right away. Lou's story stood out because his love for music, food,
travel, new experiences and photography, as well as his optimism in
people. All of those are things I value myself and seek in life.
However, literally the day after I wrote him, I met a very big and happy
group of people who always had activities planned. So I basically
forgot about OKCupid altogether.
Fast forward a few months, group activities started to
die down after Labor Day with the leaves turning. So I thought I should
probably clean out those OKCupid message notifications in my inbox.
That's when I realized that I overlooked not only one, but two responses
from Lou. His messages were just like his profile story: witty and
optimistic, but still realistic. I frantically wrote back, thinking that
I may have just missed my opportunity. Fortunately, he wrote back and
did not taunt me at all! We officially met on 9/23/2010. It quickly
became apparent that this relationship would work as we started ordering
the same food/drinks every time after date 2. We still do that every
time we go out.
We had a pretty short engagement. Lou proposed on his
birthday during our second 4th of July trip to Bar Harbor, Maine. The
things that are important to us in a wedding are good food, good
photography, good friends, and a sense of home. And that's how we
planned the wedding: ceremony in the park we frequently walk through and
by; reception at our favorite restaurant in our neighborhood (before
Food and Wine even knew about it :); and around 60 family and friends.
We wanted it to be special but also feel just like a dinner party that we
throw ourselves. Our friends rolled up their sleeves up to help:
officiating, making centerpieces and decorating, compiling the music
playlists, and video taping on the day of. In return, we shared our
favorite drinks and dishes, as well as our joy.
photographer: Denise, emilie inc. photography • preparations: Hotel Marlowe, Cambridge • ceremony: Centanni Courtyard, Cambridge • reception, caterer: West Bridge Restaurant, Cambridge • flowers: Celebrated Flower, Somerville • cake: Hungry Mother, Cambridge • hair/make-up: Caitlin Murphy • chairs: Backyard Tent Rental • gown: Angel Sanchez at L'elite • honeymoon: Japan