matt & amber {wedding from matt's perspective}

Matt & Amber has such a beautiful wedding. This is a recap, from Matt's perspective, in a letter that he wrote to some friends who couldn't make it!

Dear Barney and Eric,

We truly had the perfect wedding!

We lucked out better than we could have hoped all day. The weather
unbelievably cooperative. The sun was shining and it was warm with a
slight breeze. All the fields of orachards were in bloom and the sweet
smell of cherry, peach, and apple blossoms were in the air. The
orchard rows were abuzz with bees feeding on the blossoms. The birds
were singing and flying above us. Even the grass had small purple
flowers blooming under the feet of the guests during the ceremony - I
loved that touch even if no one else noticed them. The location was at
the top of a hill in the center of the orchard that was intentionally
left clear by the farmer. The guests had a view of the straight rows
of trees in bloom and the horizon in the distance, now greening from
the newly leafing trees. The orchard setting was spectacular.

Amber was shot by the photographer in the orchards for hours before
the ceremony. The photos are amazing. Words do no justice to them.
When you see them you can't believe they are real. She was gorgeous,
of course as she always is, and her dress was unlike any I have ever
After her personal session, I joined Amber in the orchards for our
shots. They too turned out great. Then Amber's girls joined her their
session. The shots that came from Amber, and then her with the girls,
reminded people at the reception of spreads in Vanity Fair or other
trend magazines. Amazing! Vibrant. Gorgeous. Sheik. Unreal. All words
I heard people saying when they saw them. They weren't kidding.

We were able to see some of the photos from the morning shots and the
ceremony almost immediately during the reception. The photographer,
Mitch Ranger, quickly selected some favorite photos in the beginning
of the reception and projected them on a monitor for passerby's to
see. It was also a draw to get people to participate in one of his
reception events. He put up a red back drop in one corner of the barn
and extremely quickly shot photos of anyone who was willing to
participate. He did group shots, couple shots, serous shots, crazy
drunk shots. You name it, it happened and he took it - and quick too!
It was so funny because people's shoot was over before they knew it -
then on to the next group. Once a few people started with the
pictures, it snowballed and everyone was in and out of there most of
the night. This couple, then the family, then just the girls, now all
the guys from the college house, just the work team, now everybody
that was passed out (no that one didn't happen, but it should have).
It was a great idea and so much fun!

We will get all the photos he shot from the entire day and pass them
on to everyone to enjoy. He basically does weddings as courtesy
because there is no one with his skill shooting them in the area.
Amber knows of Mitch through Herman Miller. She has hired and worked
with him on furniture shoots. Once she saw his wedding website, she
knew he was the one she wanted (
An unbelievable detail is our wedding date of May 10th was not chosen
because the orchards were going to be in bloom. This was only one of
two days of the year he had available. Amber looked at our photos from
last year on May 10th and knew it would be amazing if the weather and
trees timing worked out. And they did.

The ceremony was short and perfectly our version. Exactly what we
wanted - and guests didn't seem to mind too much either. Our friend
played acoustic guitar during seating/standing and while Amber arrived
with her dad in a horse drawn carriage. We both had readings to one
another and to all present. We exchanged vows and then the kiss. Our
minister was Amber's half-sister (on her dad's side), ordained to
perform the ceremony. She did a great job, and even managed to razz
their dad a little about being nervous. We enjoyed it.

We did group shots in the orchard after the ceremony for quite a while
too. First, family groups with Amber and I and the bloomed trees as a
backdrop. Then we did the guys shoot. Mitch selected some large fallen
trees off in the distance. We sat, stood, climbed, and jumped all over
them. It was a riot. I think we even look good. You know he's amazing
when he can pull that one off. And I think I even managed to enjoy the
photo sessions by this point.

The reception (the party as I like to call it) was the pinnacle of the
day. The barn was all old wood and had craftsmanship only visible in
the oldest of structures - an amazing setting. The floor was beautiful
and installed with pegs instead of screws or locking grooves. The high
ceilings and massive beams made it feel so open and strong. My dad
actually cooked there many many years ago before it was rentable for
events, before it was a church, before it was an antique shop - it was
a restaurant. Strange how it all comes around.

The decorations, candle lighting, and centerpieces were all made by
Amber. She had help, but Amber engineered them, and really the whole
day for that matter. I can't take credit for it - Amber made the day
happen. No doubt.

For the centerpiece at each table was a round clear vace filled about
half way with green split peas, in which small white painted and
sparkling branches were inserted into the peas, on which tea candle
lights were hung from the branches. It was a great effect to have so
many real candles in the barn.

We wanted to try something different so the plates and flatware were
all bamboo disposable/biodegradable/compostable, wrapped in napkins
with a card she printed about them and a personal note to everyone.
The hot and cold cups drink were also biodegradable, and they all
looked cool! We wanted to try and not feel so bad about generating
that much waste from our event, so we went that route.

The food was spectacular. With local Michigan ingredients when
possible. Made by a caterer friend with help from my parents, Amber's
parents and grand parents, Happy Farmer friends, and anyone they could
recruit. It all tasted better just because of them.
And the cake was so good. 9" rounds of chocolate, carrot, and even two
secret lemon ones per Amber's request - sampled by a select few by her
throughout the nite. I didn't make the cut. But I had my carrot cake
with cream cheese frosting. All hand made by a Happy Farmer friend. We
did have fancy looking three tier cake made to do the traditional
cutting ceremony, but the secret was only the top was real. The other
layers were faked with foam and frosted to match. We cut it, had the
pictures, did the tradition. But we figured why eat that if you can
have such better quality? Still, somebody ate the top, so it must have
been good too. Hopefully they didn't keep going. I never did find the

The live band rocked! My mom and dad hired a rock band we had found. I
figured they must have like them - I never saw mom or dad sit down the
whole nite. And everybody else was jamming too. People danced all
night. Sort of felt bad for the poor barn. It was taking a beating
from the action, but it held up well. No broken beams. No injuries.
All good!

The bar was great too. We had local Michigan wines. Tasty potato vodka
(why people drink grain I'll never know), quality rum, and even some
good wiskey for the mixers. I picked up 3 kegs - Bell's Oberon,
Leine's Sunset Wheat, and Miller High Life. I was bummed we couldn't
get MGD. For some strange reason it's not available in kegs - didn't
quite understand that, but the High Life wasn't bad second. I love
Sunset Wheat and figured others liked it too as much as I do.
Apparently I didn't understand just how much more people like Oberon.
It was gone in about an hour. Might have to sample that one a few more
times to come to appreciate that beer - for now I'll stick to Sunset
Wheat. At least I'll know I'll have some left when the friends stop

We still can't believe everyone that came to help us celebrate. They
made the day. We all ate great food, treated ourselves to delicious
cake, drank sweet alcohol, had some laughs, shot great photos, and
rocked to the band! It was awesome.

It was all so perfect it didn't seem real.
There are so many photos and videos that we can send both of you that
you will feel you were here.

Saturday night, Amber and I stayed at the hotel with everyone from out
of town and had breakfast with all those capable of waking in the
morning... no, everybody did good. Only a few stragglers here and
there. We'll have to get them out more often to party. Work up the
tolerances and the muscles before the next big shindig. Maybe just
extra aspirin to mask it. Who knows - whatever works.

We did some more cleanup work at the barn in the morning with the help
of those who should have left by then. Said our good byes to the
traveling friends. Then we visited with her parents and family at the
Fritcher house. Then I headed over to visit my family at the Tippet
house. After a while the Heinrich side and I headed to the local
Shelby Brown Bear restaurant for some grub and more laughs.

Just amazing. It was all so much fun.
In the days leading up to the wedding, Amber wanted it to slow down so
we could enjoy the time we had with everyone. And somehow it did. We
were able to spend time with so many family and friends the days
before, the day of, and after. It was truly unbelievable. We will
never forget it.

Lots of Love,
-Matt and Amber

1 comment:

  1. wow! sounds like a fairy tale wedding...i can't wait to see the infamous wedding photos, they sound amazing...that is so cool that matt, being the guy, described his wedding day so completely! I almost felt like I was there myself. Anyway, thanks for sharing.
    love you and miss you.