Double the proposals, double the brides, double the love.
Where are you both from and how did you meet?
Nicole: It all started with a “hey.” One simple saying in a simple message on the dating site, Plenty of Fish (POF), and that’s all it took. We spent the next few weeks getting to know each other over emails and texts. After a month of talking, we knew we had to meet but, of course, our schedules just didn’t work. Finally, Jodi had enough and demanded an on-the-spot date, that night. So off we went to meet at a local bar. Both being nervous, we set the time but both showed up early. I had arrived first which allowed me enough time to settle up to the bar, make friends with the bartender and sample multiple shot-sized tasting of their local craft beers. While Jodi waited in the parking lot to meet. Oops. When Jodi realized I was already there inside, she walked into the bar to see me at the bar with what looked like ten shots. Here’s to first impressions! Over the course of the next few hours we hit it off as if we had been friends for years. We laughed and joked and, before we knew it, it was last call. By the time we said our goodbyes, we both knew this was going to be something more.
How long were you together before you were engaged? How did you get engaged?
Nicole: Our first proposal was planned by Jodi, who used our annual “cabin by the sea” vacation in Jamestown, Rhode Island, during the week of the Fourth of July as the perfect opportunity to pop the question. Little did I know that this was going not going to be just a typical weekend away. Jodi had spent the last year planning our engagement and everyone knew besides me. Upon arriving and unpacking the car, my priority was to eat lunch while Jodi nervously paced around. While I focused on eating her sandwich and soaking up some sun, Jodi was trying to have a true heart-to-heart conversation. As I continued to brush off the details of the unusually serious conversation Jodi was trying to have. Jodi finally stopped what she was saying, walked over and asked for a hug. As soon as I stood up, Jodi immediately dropped to her knee and we were able to share an incredible moment. Jodi had put so much time and thought not into just the day but also her ring. It is a uniquely personal design using all of Jodi’s mother’s engagement ring.
Just over a year after Jodi’s initial proposal, I had planned a special day at the end of our September vacation. I used the excuse to end the vacation on a high note to spend down in Newport by the water. Little did Jodi know, we were not going to Newport to enjoy the water view but instead were taking a helicopter ride over Newport and the Newport mansions. We were able to share the moment in the air together where I proposed. After the helicopter ride, we went to Newport Vineyards for a celebratory cocktail.
We each surprised each other after the initial proposal with an engagement party. Jodi was able to use the cover of her parents being out of town for the Fourth of July holiday to go to their house and care for their dogs. Needless to say, they never went on their trip and instead we had a family cookout with our closest friends and family. I later surprised Jodi with a trip to Carolyn’s Sakonnet Vineyards because this was the original place where Jodi had asked my parents for my hand in marriage. Upon arriving at the vineyard, we were greeted again by our closest friends and family.
What were you favorite and least favorite parts of planning?
Nicole: Honestly, planning our wedding wasn’t as complicated as it could have been. We are both pretty easy going. It did help that I’m very organized and detail-oriented and Jodi allowed me to take full control and assist when needed. We worked together very well and focused on our areas of strengths so neither one of us ever became overwhelmed. We also knew upon getting engaged that we wanted to wait two years. This time would allow us to enjoy being engaged before the potential pressures of planning a wedding would start. However, our engagement turned into three years because in-between planning a wedding we purchased a home.
As for the theme/aesthetic, we both had a general idea of a rich, bold and elegant theme. Our wedding date fell perfectly between our birthdays and had a nice ring to it. We also took into consideration that we typically still have the late warm summer days and cooler evenings of early fall. The colors were easy because not only did they meet our rich and bold concept, but they are also our favorite (burgundy and blue). Our locations also meet the same criteria. For us, things just naturally feel into place.
How did you come across Kelly for your photographer?
We had located Kelly through Instagram. Nowadays, it’s one of the most easily accessible and unique ways of not only connecting with people but also businesses. From upon reviewing her Instagram page and website we were able to see an array of her portfolios. Like most of our wedding decisions, we went with our gut. Not only was she a pleasure in person but also we truly just fell in love with her style of work.
How about Waterman Grille for your venue?
One thing we both prioritized was the food/menu selection for our guests. With Providence being a foodie city, we knew there were a lot of options to choose from, but their menu was above and beyond. While the Waterman Grille was not only conveniently located down the road from the Lippitt House (where we had our ceremony), it also offers waterfront space and an extensively unique menu. It was another easy decision. One thing that set the Waterman Grille apart of other options was the benefit of allowing our guests the opportunity to select and customize their meals while at the reception. It took a lot of additional efforts off our plate.
Also, the location itself is amazing. Truly giving us the water view option we wanted with access to a beautiful patio for cocktail hour and elegant dining area with gorgeous views of the Providence River.
Jodi, what was going through your head as Nicole walked down the aisle toward you?
Jodi: This was one of those moments I played out time and time again leading up to the day. Every time I had thought about it, it gave me butterflies. The real deal was unlike anything I have felt before. Pure, true love. Deep, meaningful, unconditional love. The moment she turned the corner and we locked eyes, I was overwhelmed with happiness. The feeling of knowing I was home, for good. That anything I’d face in life, good or bad, she’d be with me through it all.
Did you write your own vows? If so, what advice would you give to couples who are considering writing their own?
We knew without a doubt that we wanted to write our own vows. For us, it was an opportunity to genuinely share our love for each other. For the both of us it came naturally. It was like taking everything we loved about each other and condensing it into a short few sentences.
Our advice would be: don’t force it, sit down take some time to really think about your love and what makes it special and unique and, most importantly, add some humor! Nothing beats a quick little blurb that he/she will love and appreciate in the moment.
What was your first dance song? How did you pick it?
Our first dance was to Ingrid Michaelson’s cover of “Can’t Help Falling in Love with You“. For us we both went into all our dances with the guideline of being a classic song that had meaningful lyrics we could relate to. Our first dance was not different. This song is one that not only one we could relate to but felt as though the chorus sums up exactly how we feel towards each other. “Take my hand, take my whole life too. For I can’t help falling in love with you.”
Were there any vendors you were particularly impressed with?
PVDonuts was so accommodating when sitting down with us on our scheduled visits, extremely responsive to emails and made our day easy! From the allowing us to choose our flavors from their extensive list, providing the wall that the doughnuts sat on, customizing the beautiful hers and hers take-home doughnuts and the amazing service — we couldn’t have been happier!
Max and Kim were the next to really set the tone for our day. Our ceremony music was the perfect mix of romance and elegance. They took the time to learn our favorite songs and give them their own special twist. It was perfect! We received so many compliments about how having them play acoustic music playing during our ceremony added to “feels” of the day. Especially, once everyone learned we had each selected the others song to walk down the aisle too.
And then there was our photographer, Kelly, who made a huge impression on us from the moment we met her in Pawtuxet Village. We chatted for hours about our vibe, who we were, how we met and what silly quirks we obtained over the years together. When it came time for our big day, it felt like a close friend was with us, documenting our every moment and sharing it side by side with us. We truly enjoyed being in front of the camera!
Did you run into any issues while planning or on the day of the wedding? If so, how did you overcome them?
Like any big life event, you can only plan so much until you have to leave it up to fate and hope that you were communicating effectively throughout the entire process. I will tell you, once the day starts, there is a natural high of love and happiness flowing through you that eliminates any feelings of frustration over minor hiccups. For us, we focused on the meaning of the day and let everything else just fall wayside.
If you had to narrow it down, what would you say were each of your favorite moments from that day?
Jodi: There were a lot of favorites on this day but my BIGGEST one would have to be the half hour between photos and being announced at the reception. We sat in the limo and popped our first bottle of champagne as Mrs. & Mrs. We cheersed to our first few hours of our next chapter and soaked in every moment together before walking in. It was nice to have a little bit of time alone and appreciate everything that had and was about to take place.
Nicole: Wow, that’s a really hard question. There were so many great moments of the day it is hard to narrow it down to just one. But for me I would have to say it was the moment we were announced Mrs. & Mrs. at our ceremony. There is so much build up throughout planning and the day of that in that particular moment it all comes together. Not only were we excited but to turn and look out at our guests and see them smiling and cheering us on, you could truly feel the excitement and love resonating. It was a powerful moment.
Do you have any overall advice for recently engaged couples?
We would advise them to enjoy the moment of being engaged and not rush into wedding planning. Our perspective is that there are few moments in life that are truly life-changing and take-your-breath-away. Becoming engaged is one of them, so stop and enjoy the moment. You are going to have a lifetime together — why rush?
And finally, how’s married life treating you?
Married life has been great. We had a beautiful wedding, an amazing honeymoon and throughout our first year we have had so many great opportunities happen for us. We still get just as exciting talking about our wedding as we did planning it. We honestly can’t believe that it’s already been a year — time truly does fly when you are having fun!
Photographer: Kelly Louise Photography // Ceremony: Lippitt House Museum // Reception and Catering: Waterman Grille // Additional photos: Omni Hotel Providence, Brown University Campus, College Hill in Providence // Officiant: Mary Velan, friend of the couple // Hair: Elizabeth Tucker of Dylan Elizabeth Beauty // Makeup: Maria Piccardi of Bella Rose Beauty // Nicole’s dress: The Bridal Shoppe // Jodi’s and Bridesman suits: Carl Anthony Tuxedo // Wedding party dresses: Bill Levkoff // Doughnuts: PVDonuts // Flowers: Flowerthyme // Reception music: The Dance Floor DJs // Signage: Minted and Etsy // Ceremony chair rentals: Quality Rental // Ceremony music: KM Music // Transportation: Rockstar Limo