February 14th 2016
Liz is a small town girl from Ohio who graduated from Ohio State University and worked for years in design and management of a landscape company. She traveled to San Diego in 2008 to pursue a new career, which is where she met Jen. Liz currently works as the Director of Client Services for a large Landscape company in Phoenix, where the couple settled together. Jen was born and raised in South Phoenix and was in San Diego pursuing a career in law enforcement and forensic science before returning to her hometown. Jen currently works as a Capital Crimes Defense Investigator for the County.
The couple met in San Diego in 2009 when Jen brought a date—whom she wasn’t that into—to a party where Liz was also a guest. Say the brides, “We stood in the kitchen and talked football and family. The conversation was easy, we shared a lot in common, and it felt like we had known each other for years. Within weeks, we were exclusive and did the usual Uhaul move-in that most lesbians our age do.”
Jen knew that Liz was the love of her life. A couple of years into the relationship, Liz planned a romantic gondola tour through the Coronado Cays. Jen knew it would be the perfect opportunity to pop the question so she bought rings, strawberries and champagne. Say the brides, “It was a magical day we will never forget.” At the time, marriage was not legal but within a month the couple signed Domestic Partnership papers at the San Diego Clerks Office. In 2010, Jen and Liz moved to Phoenix to pursue new careers, buy a home and settle down. It was not until 2015 when same-sex marriage was declared legal across the US that they decided to have a wedding.
Their wedding was a DIY mix between Liz and Jen’s favorite things: sock monkeys and plants. Say the brides, “As strange as it sounds it turned out to be amazing. Friends did everything from creating a candy bar and sock monkey cake topper to potting the succulents into cute tin containers for guests to take home and grow. The artificial flowers—because we aren’t fans of fresh cut flowers—were also done by a friend.
The brides heard the song at a friend’s wedding and were so moved they asked if they could use it too.
The brides had a first dance to Ellie Goulding’s “How Long Will I Love You.” They say, “It was a perfect song that spoke to the depth of our commitment and love for each other.” They also jointly danced with their fathers then did the same with their mothers.
Jen’s Favorite Moment: Seeing my lovely bride walking down the aisle with tears in her eyes and that open soul that I fell in love with. I knew at that moment that this was the beginning of the rest of our lives together and I was so proud and so in love with her that I broke down crying. I didn’t expect it to hit me so hard but it was really an incredible moment.
Liz’s Favorite Moment: Standing at the entrance to Ancala watching Jen walk down the aisle with her parents. At that moment, I knew that this was what I had dreamed of since the day we met in a small kitchen in San Diego.
Both brides wanted to honor their parents for the love and support they have showed them through the years. Jen was escorted down the aisle by both of her parents but Liz’s mother had medical issues that stopped her from doing the same. Say the brides, “We incorporated a tree planting into our ceremony that was symbolic for our ever growing love and need to nourish each other. We had both of our mom’s gather soil from our respective homes where we grew up and we used that soil to help plant the tree. During the ceremony our mothers helped us re-pot the tree. We were supposed to water it but we forgot the water!” Jen says that it ended up being a great moment when they realized they missed that detail and Liz turned to her co-workers and said, “It’s ok. I have people for that.”
A die-hard Ohio State fan, Liz wanted to have their colors be scarlet and gray, which worked well for their Valentine’s Day wedding. They also had personalized plants for all to take home, handmade heart wreaths made of succulents, handmade succulent centerpieces, a candy buffet, and a photo booth.
The brides say that there is not a single thing they would change about their wedding. “It unfolded just as it was supposed to and will forever be a cherished memory.”
Jen’s parents escort her to her ceremony site.
Liz and her father follow close behind.
The brides join hands.
Their tree planting ceremony didn’t go quite as planned, but still turned out to be a special moment for the couple and their parents.
The brides say “I do” and lean in for a kiss.
Officially Mrs. & Mrs.
Can’t beat this view.
The sky lights up as the newlyweds bask in the romantic glow.
Jen & Liz take the floor as wife & wife.
Next the brides dance with their fathers.
Then their mothers.
Details include potted succulents and a gorgeous wreath.
These two are definitely having fun.
Gotta love these sock monkey desserts!
The brides cut the cake and each take a taste.
The brides say they were blessed with amazing sunsets on their wedding day.
Say the newlyweds, “We also were blessed with being referred to two amazing photographers, Connie and Steve from CWLIFE Photography, who not only were there to capture our day, but were an amazing support throughout the entire process, from start to finish. “
“How long will I love youAs long as stars are above youAnd longer if I canHow long will I need youAs long as the seasons need to
Follow their plan.”