A Tale of Finding Love in the Midst of a Pandemic
29 min

A Tale of Finding Love in the Midst of a Pandemic

Fate has a funny way of working its way into our lives, whether to our favor, or our detriment. We are dealt a certain hand, and ultimately it falls in the power of the beholder to make the best of whatever has been thrust upon us. Fate unfortunately affected us all with the impact of the COVID-19 virus, along with the seemingly endless ripple effects still impacting us today. However, for soon-to-be newlyweds Ian and Hannah, the pandemic brought fate to their door in a way they never expected; by meeting the love of their lives. 

Hannan and Ian were introduced at a socially distanced party in Boulder, where small groups of 12-15 were approved indoors. Ian’s new puppy caught Hannah’s eye immediately, however, it turned out that the owner of this puppy was someone who would also soon have her attention. It was a moment of clarity that Hannah could not ignore, she later told Ian, “Everything disappeared when I met you.” The two talked all through the night, and afterwards they began to see each other on a one-on-one basis. Through their shared interest in exercise, the pair soon came to realize that they shared much more than just surface value attributes. They also shared mutual values in life, and they found themselves striving for corresponding goals for their futures, as well as like-minded thoughts about the past. It was at this point that Hannah not only decided to adopt Ian’s puppy, she became okay with the idea of adopting Ian into her life permanently as well. Hannah reflected back on her time of hesitancy in finally agreeing to say yes to dating Ian, she initially had said no to his question when posed. She knew very early on that Ian was the one for her, and the finality of the situation was a daunting prospect at first. However, she soon came to realize she would regret saying no for the rest of her life, and she took the plunge. Once both parties were full in, everything, “clicked into place.” It was at this point that both Ian and Hannah knew there was no going back, that they had found their forever in each other’s arms. 

When seeing Ian and Hannah interact with others, there is a light of positivity that radiates from each of them individually. But when they interact with each other, their internal fire sparks from flicker to bonfire. Adoration seeps from within when they look at each other, and there are non-stop smiles through every exchange. They each describe the other as their, “light in the dark.” The times of lock down and quarantine were a bleak time for everyone, and too often as a society we experienced loss. It speaks volumes that Hannah and Ian were not only able to maintain their own individual positivity, but were able to find an intimate connection with someone just as like-minded. And although their story is so picturesque it feels like it could easily become a romcom release on Netflix in the next year, it works as a testament to how unique the couple is, both as a duo as well as respective adults in the midst of a pandemic. 

What emanates from their relationship through their interactions is a sense of balance. It is clear that these two started out as humble, thoughtful individuals who both worked to brighten the day of the people around them. That was what initially attracted Ian and Hannah to each other; a selflessness and determination to be there for the people close to them. But observing them as a unit, it is evident that these two have mastered the finesse of the relationship dance. Each step is thoughtful, and delicate to not step on the toes of the other. They are careful to not move too fast outside of the rhythm of the beat, and to ensure support for their partner as they take on their next moves. Fate may have brought Ian and Hannah together, but it is obvious that hard work and consideration for one another keeps them going strong. As Hannah can attest to as a runner, love is a marathon, not a sprint. With their upbeat attitudes and ever-present infatuation with one another, there is no doubt they possess the steam to continue on their journey with as much passion in their eyes as that first day they locked in Boulder. 

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Vintage Vows: Julia & Greg’s Y2K Wedding

Looking for timeless inspiration for your big day? We’ve hunted down old wedding wisdom that is sure to wow your guests. We’ve decided the best way to go forward is to look back. As they say, history repeats itself. Trends come and go, but which wedding traditions stand the test of time? We’re interviewing brides from all over the country to hear about how they celebrated their 20th century nuptials, what they’d do again, and what details they would opt for in this millennium. The wedding industry has changed dramatically in the last 30 years, and we’re on a quest to figure out what is truly important versus what is industry fluff. 

Our first feature is Julia and Greg’s Y2K wedding in Boulder, Colorado. 

Gregory Charles Davis and Julia Ann Porter tied the knot at the turn of the century in Boulder, Colorado. Their early fall nuptials took place at St. John’s Episcopal Church, followed by a reception at the Red Lion Restaurant on Boulder Creek in Boulder Canyon. The reception location was chosen as an ode to the couple’s mutual love for the mountains, Julia’s German heritage and European background and Greg’s fondness for fly fishing.

Although the creekside restaurant is no longer operating, it holds dear sentiment and the memory of an iconic party for the Davis’s and their 85 guests. Along with their photos (and feature in Colorado Bride Magazine), Julia shared the details that made their big day remarkable. Here’s our round-up of what we would steal from the Davis’s vintage vows.

Old School Advice – Why We Love this Wedding 

From guest entertainment to personalization, Julia and Greg created an intimate yet lively multi-day celebration of their love. Personal touches like a custom video at the rehearsal dinner, glass chiming, an organized song battle and non-matching bridesmaid dresses created a unique and memorable affair. Julia focused her energy on cultivating a party atmosphere rather than fixating on flower arrangements and small details. 

Favorite Memory: Creating the Party Atmosphere

Julia’s favorite memory from the big day engaged the guests and created the perfect party atmosphere. 

“When the wedding festivities were in full swing on the dance floor my sisters organized the singing of ‘Paradise by The Dashboard Light’ (Meat Loaf). The guys were on one side of the floor and the women on the other–literally screaming their respective lyrics at each other. It was awesome–everyone participated.”

Size Matters

The age old question is what is the best number of guests. The US average is 167 and while the guest list depends on your budget, venue and timeline, Julia gave us her insight on why she loved her mid-sized (now considered small) wedding. 

“We had 85 guests when all was said and done and that was a PERFECT number.  Just intimate enough and not too big to talk to everyone.” 

It’s a Weekend Thing

“We were lucky people weren’t too hungover for the wedding.”

Why have one party when you can make it a weekend? With guests coming from here, there and everywhere, the Davis’s decided one day of celebration was not enough. The couple planned three days of events to celebrate their union. This turn of the century tip holds true today. A weekend of festivities is the perfect way to connect with what makes the occasion so special, the joining of two families and having quality time with the ones you love the most. Traditionally, out of town guests are invited to the rehearsal dinner, but why stop there? Many bridal parties are opting for a get together several days before the wedding, just the boys and girls. A welcome party is a great way to get everyone involved before the big day, and a morning after brunch with family and close friends is a brilliant way to bid adieu before heading home. 

“Most of our guests came from out of town and hung out with us for 3 nights.  A BBQ/campfire at our house in Denver on night one, rehearsal dinner and pretty much a bachelorette party on night two, then the wedding on day three. We had a large wedding party of all very close friends.”

Father knows best – Enjoy the Day! Have fun!

It’s easy to get caught up in the stress of the planning process. Right before she walked down the aisle, Julia’s Dad reminded her of the real (and most important) reason they were all there. 

“My Dad said to me right before we walked down the aisle that this was a happy occasion for celebration and I should be all smiles. I loved that because I smiled all day instead of crying despite all the heightened emotions on such a big day.”  

Who Wore What: Different Dresses & Tailcoats

Julia was ahead of her time by having her bridesmaids choose their own dresses rather than opting for matching garb. It was important to her that each member of her bridal party felt comfortable and confident standing by her side. Giving the bridal party the freedom to choose (within parameters) is a great way to be mindful of each member’s budget. Being a bridesmaid adds up, and if buying a dress is required, it is nice to have something each individual likes and could wear again. Additionally, bridesmaids of different body types are able to choose a style that they feel comfortable in. It is difficult to find one style of dress that is the right color, flatters everyone, and is affordable. Looking for bridesmaid inspiration? Here are our favorite dresses of the moment! 

 “I let each bridesmaid pick their own dress style.  It just had to be floor length and bare shoulders. They were all happy in their outfits and got to wear a style that flattered their features.” 

“The men wore tails.  What man doesn’t look totally hot in tails! And one Scottish friend wore a kilt. Loved.”

“Tail,” or tailcoat, is when the back of the coat is much longer than the front. The back is elongated and split into two “tails,” and it’s considered to be a little more formal. Think: men’s jackets in Bridgerton, or Colin Firth in Pride and Prejudice. While the guys in these period pieces are extremely handsome, I have to disagree with Julia on this one. Tailcoats feel a little stuffy, and, honestly, a nice fitting suit that’s the normal length in the back looks way more polished. While the bridal party outfits look timeless in these photos, the groomsmen look is a little dated. Modernize your groomsmen with a sleek tuxedo if you’re going for a formal flair or make it more casual with well-fitting suits. Check out our guide to finding the perfect suit fit here

Special details

Glass Chiming

Take something old and make it new. Guests requesting the newlyweds kiss by tapping their glasses has been a longstanding tradition. Nowadays, however, the practice is much less common. We love the fun twist Greg and Julia had on this old custom that involves the guests, boosting the mood of the reception and encouraging them to get to know each other. 

“Greg and I made a rule that we would not respond to knives clinking against glassware to kiss, if the guest wanted us to find each other and kiss, their table had to sing a song with the word ‘love’ in the lyrics.  Everyone participated and it was seriously hilarious. The single friends table sang ‘Love Stinks’!”

Rehearsal Dinner Personalization

The rehearsal dinner is an excellent time and place to honor the two families coming together and highlight the journey the lovebirds took that ultimately brought them together. You could run a slideshow in the background, put together photo albums for guests to flip through or, take a clue from the Davis’s and show a video.

“At the rehearsal dinner, Greg’s best friend Rob had a friend of his who was an MTV producer create a video of pictures of Greg and I from childhood. It was put to music. There was not a dry eye after it was played.” 

What do you love about this wedding? Let us know in the comments!

Did your vintage vows wow? Submit your wedding to be featured to kathryn.dickson@wedmayhem.com  

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