Ross and Leslie’s Wedding: Part Two

Shared with Christina Block’s kind permission, the pictures featured in this blog post were taken by the incredibly talented team behind Christina Block Photography.

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Wedding Rings

Ross and Leslie’s Wedding: Part Two

Leslie, her bridesmaids and her flower girl all arrived at the wedding venue 45 minutes before the ceremony began. We wanted to be sure the bride was hidden from her groom and guests and while we chatted away, Ross and his groomsmen finished their pictures on a quiet St. Augustine street.

Groomsmen

Recognize anyone? Ryan was one of Ross’ groomsmen!

As longtime blog readers know, Ryan and Ross were fraternity brothers and best friends in college. (Ross was also a groomsmen in our wedding!) I’ve known Ross for 10 years and could not have been more thrilled when he started dating my sister. It was wonderful to see Ross surrounded by men from all stages of his life and a handful of guys I know and adore from college.

Goofy Groomsmen Picture

boutineer

Before their wedding day, Leslie surprised Ross with peach argyle socks to wear which I thought looked awesome with his classy black tuxedo.

Colorful Argyle Socks for Groomsmen

Once the last of the groomsmen pictures were done, the guys walked to The White Room to greet guests before the ceremony began.

Groomsmen walking to wedding ceremony

While I waited with my sister and her bridesmaids downstairs, Leslie’s photographer told Leslie is was time for a special pre-ceremony moment with Ross where they were able to hold hands, talk to each other and pray on either side of a wall without Ross seeing his bride.

Bride and Groom behind a wall before the ceremony

Though I wasn’t there for this moment, I can say that when Leslie returned to the room where we were all waiting, she was beaming. Her nervous energy seemed to evaporate and she was filled with an excited calm. More than ever, it seemed like she was ready to marry Ross.

Bride and Bridesmaid Laughing

Maid of Honor and Bride

In the moments before we were ushered upstairs, Leslie’s bridesmaid Allyson said a prayer for the wedding ahead and Ross and Leslie’s future together.

Bridesmaids praying

Bridesmaids Praying together before ceremony

After some tears and hugs, it was time to pack into the elevator and line up! It was almost time to walk down the aisle!

The mothers of the bride made their way down the aisle first. Ross’ mother was escorted by his brother and best man, Jeremy.

Best Man Mother of the Groom

Ryan escorted my mom down the aisle before joining the other groomsmen by Ross’ side.

Ryan and Mom

As the bridesmaids began walking down the aisle, my sister, dad and I huddled together and shared some last-minute “I love yous” and hugs. As I left the two of them together, I took a deep breath to keep the tears back.

Matron of Honor

When I took my first step down the aisle, I remember immediately locking eyes with Ross. He looked confident and nervous at the same time. As he stood under the gorgeous wooden cross, I walked toward him and knew he couldn’t wait to see the woman who would follow the precious flower girl behind me.

Bride Walking Down the Aisle

My little sister. His bride. His wife.

When I asked Leslie whether or not she thought Ross would cry on their wedding day weeks before the ceremony, she said, “No. He feels like there’s pressure on the groom to cry… like everyone wants the groom to cry or something. He thinks that will psych him out, so I don’t think he will cry.”

She was wrong.

groom crying

Her groom cried.

tearful groom

And I will never forget the way he looked at my sister that day.

excited groom

I will also never forget the way my sister looked at him.

crying bride

That is Leslie’s I’m trying as hard as I can not to cry face.

And this is my dad’s Forget it, I am crying and I can’t stop face.

Giving Away the Bride

As the pastor asked my dad the standard, “Who presents this woman to be married to this man” question, his reply was barely audible as he hugged and kissed my sister and placed her hands in Ross’.

Large Wooden Cross Wedding Ceremony

St. Augustine Wedding

After the pastor welcomed everyone and shared some beautiful words about Leslie and Ross, it was time for the bride and groom to exchange their vows. They elected to write their own vows and share them with each other for the first time on their wedding day.

Groom reading vows

handing bride tissues

They were emotional, funny and extremely heartfelt.

bride reading vows to groom

wedding ceremony laughter

As Ross and Leslie recited their vows and the tears started flowing, my dad and Ross’ mom stepped up from their seats in the front row and handed them tissues for their tears which they gratefully accepted!

handing bride tissues at alter

More laughter came once my sister was done with her soggy tissue and decided to hand it to me. Some things only sisters can get away with, right!?

handing over tissue

That was one of those hilarious, “Did that really just happen!?” moments for sure!

Hearing Ross and Leslie speak such loving words to each other made everything inside of me overflow with happiness. I have all the faith in the world in their relationship.

They are wonderful apart, but even better together.

Soon after their vows, it was time to exchange rings. I was responsible for carrying Ross’ ring and made sure to keep it safe on my thumb until it was time for me to pass it off.

exchange of rings

For my parents’ 30-year wedding anniversary, my mom and dad changed out their original wedding rings. The ring that now sits on Ross’ left hand is actually my dad’s original wedding band, melted down and fitted to Ross’ finger and style preference.

After the exchange of rings, it was time to kiss the bride!

Bride and Groom Kiss

Husband and wife!

Excited Bride and Groom

Bride and Groom After I Do

I have never seen Ross or Leslie look happier than they did that day!

To be continued…

Reception fun to come!

Comments

  1. Julie says

    What an absolutely beautiful wedding! I just love everything about it from the romantic, vintage look to how clearly Leslie and Ross are just so in love with each other! I kept hitting refresh on your blog today to see if you posted part 2 yet. One question, what is that beautiful peach-colored flower?

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  2. Molly Smith says

    I am planning my wedding right now, getting married August 2nd of this year (YAY!), and I am in love with how beautiful Ross and Leslie’s wedding was! It looks like it was filled with so much love and happiness! I can’t wait to see more. Thank you so much for sharing! I really like the idea of giving the groom socks, I feel like it was so he wouldn’t get “cold feet” I will for sure have to use that idea!

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  3. says

    That is so very cool about the ring that Ross now wears- makes it even MORE special.
    & gosh, Julie, I wish I had hired you to come to my wedding & then write about it. AMAZING words, absolutely PERFECTLY put. – again more tears – happy, happy tears 😀

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  4. says

    The part that got me the most was that after she got to talk to Ross all her nervousness went away. My husband and I did a “first look” and while I know a lot of people don’t want their groom to see them before they walk down the aisle, it was truly THE BEST decision I made about that day. I was such a ball of nerves before I got to talk to him, and he admitted that he was as well, but afterwards we were absolutely relaxed and READY to get married. I like the way you and Leslie both did it where you got to talk to your grooms but they didn’t see you. I would recommend that any bride do it that way or the way I did it, with the First Look. There is just something about getting to talk to your groom before you walk down that aisle that makes everything a million times easier! Congrats Leslie and Ross! It’s clear how much they love each other from these photos.

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    • Catherine says

      My husband and I had a first look at our wedding too and I recommend it to everyone, I agree that not everyone wants their groom to see them before the wedding … but it was the best decision we could have made, It calmed my nerves and allowed us to have our moment together instead of in front of all of the wedding guests. And, since we took all of our pictures before the wedding (6pm evening wedding) it allowed the day to flow and have no awkward breaks for guests.

      Seeing my groom before the ceremony didn’t make the moment I walked down the aisle any less special for us. And, now we love to be able to look at our pictures and have our first look captured so nicely 🙂

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  5. Brynn says

    What a lovely wedding! I loved hearing the wedding through your eyes. It was so emotional when my sister and brother got married. What a special day.

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  6. Josefine says

    I am so happy for Leslie and Ross! Even though I don’t know them they seem like such good people and I wish them many happy years together!

    Thanks for sharing Julie. Its always great to see people so happy and by sharing you’re spreading happiness 🙂

    Can’t wait for next wedding post 🙂

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  7. Jodi I. says

    Long time reader here but rarely comment but I just had to tell you that I’m sitting here at work balling like a baby. That picture of Ross crying was the sweetest thing ever!! …..Pass the tissues please!

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  8. Marie K says

    I love weddings, and I absolutely loved this post. Made me smile, laugh and cry! Thank you for sharing, I’ve been looking forward to it! 🙂

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  9. Julianne says

    I’m getting married in October and this definitely made my stomach leap…in a good way! Just so beautiful and makes it seem so real! Great recap!!!

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  10. Jackie W says

    I can’t stand to see a grown man cry! And I got choked up looking at Ross’s picture! LOL
    I love the wooden cross too. A nice change from the usual alters.

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  11. Annie says

    DARNIT who’s cutting onions in the office again?!?!

    So touching, so beautiful, and I lost it at Ross’ face when he sees his bride for the first time.

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  12. Abby says

    Weddings are my favorite, and I’m so glad that you decided to share Leslie’s wedding on your blog! After reading for a couple of years, it almost feels like you guys are family!
    Everything has been absolutely beautiful so far, and I can’t wait to read more! 🙂

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  13. says

    This is so beautiful! I’m tearing up just reading about this- I can’t imagine how emotional and gorgeous this day was for your family! Just beautiful!

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  14. says

    Oh my goodness, Julie! All of this is exceptionally beautiful. The photos, the recap, the peach argyle socks (lol)!!! Ahh, isn’t it SO beautiful to watch someone you love and cherish so deeply get married to the man/woman of their dreams? Reading this post was like stepping into a little fairy tale! Thank you for that. So much love!

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  15. Mary Conway says

    Such beautiful pictures – love how happy everyone looks. As a young adult with a parent who has survived cancer, it seems extra special to have your entire family celebrating such a wonderful day. Congratulations to you all.

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  16. Amanda @A Latte Learn says

    So beautifully written! I don’t even know you personally but this made me tear up at how simply beautiful everything was!

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  17. says

    I’m preparing to be maid of honor in my best friends wedding this summer (and then a bridesmaid in my other best friends wedding this fall) and your post had me giggling (when she handed you the soggy tissue) and tearing up (when I saw Ross’s crying face). Oh man, you are such a talented writer! Thank you for sharing this and I can’t wait to read your next post!

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  18. Mary Beth says

    What a beautiful testimony to such a special day. I was busted with teary eyes by a coworker passing by while I was reading this. So she came in and read parts 1 & 2, and together we are both crying at complete strangers.
    ::sigh:: … you should work for Hallmark.

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  19. says

    Beautiful. This is essentially my dream wedding – the flowers, colors, vows, reactions, photos… I totally cried just reading about it! I’m getting married in 5 months and I can’t even read about a wedding without tearing up – I better warn my maid of honor she will need to hold my soaked tissues!

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  20. says

    Oh Julie, this is such a sweet recap. I had to actively try not to get a little teary when I was reading it. You and your sister (and everyone really) looked so gorgeous. Congratulations to Ross and Leslie!!

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  21. Laura says

    I’ve been reading for a while, but don’t think I ever commented! Everything is just so beautiful…your sister, her dress, the flowers, the cross! Just beautiful! Thanks for sharing and thanks to your sister for letting us get a peek into her special day! 🙂

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  22. says

    Gaahhhh these are too beautiful, Julie! Everything looks so natural and filled with genuine joy. 😀 I have a question, are Ross and Leslie Christian, as in they have a relationship with God? From the many posts you’ve written about them it just seems like they always try to put him in the center of their relationship. It’s just so sweet and encouraging to see that, hope I’m not being intrusive! Seriously though…love the photos. <3

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  23. Casie Long says

    I feel like I am just echoing everyone, but this was truly so gorgeous and romantic. Thank you so much for sharing such a special moment, and I love all the details!!! I can’t wait for the reception!!! Oh, would you mind also doing a post or two on the honeymoon??? I would very much appreciate it.
    Thanks again for sharing so much of yours and your loved ones lives.

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  24. Claire says

    Beautiful post! What a perfect couple and a lovely ceremony. Thank you for sharing!! Can’t wait for the next recap 🙂

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  25. Katie says

    I’m really enjoying these wedding recaps! You do a beautiful job of recapping weddings… I even got teary eyed on this second post! I absolutely loved Leslie’s dress as well… I wish I would have seen her before I ordered mine a few months ago !!

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  26. Em says

    Your sister is gorgeous!! Her dress is so romantic and stunning, and I love the traditional touches. The look on your Dad’s face brought tears to my eyes. I know I saw that look in my Dad’s eyes when he gave his speech at my wedding and I felt the same when I watched my little brother get married. Your family is so precious, congrats to you all!

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    • Em says

      And, oh my goodness, the way your brother-in-law looked at your sister walking down the aisle…no words. Beautiful moment. The photographer did an amazing job!

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  27. gina (fitnessista) says

    omggggg.
    when i saw the picture of them standing on either side of the wall holding hands I LOST IT. so much love, happiness and beauty in this post!
    all of the details are amazing, and the photos are perfect. the mother of the bride and mother of the groom looked stunning, too– i loved their dresses.
    beautiful ceremony for a beautiful couple. wishing them a lifetime of happiness together <3

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  28. Julie says

    From one Julie to another – such a beautiful wedding! Everything is perfect from the way Lesie and Ross look at one another with so much love, to the color palette and flowers, and just all the amazing details.You both looked beautiful. Thank you so much for sharing this special day with your readers! Can’t wait for part three (and embaressed to admit how eagerly I was awaiting parts one and two!)

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  29. Rachel says

    Stunning!! So sweet about using your dad’s ring to create Ross’!

    I got married the same exact day as them and it definitely made me smile reading through your story. I was completely fine (mostly excited and not nervous) and as soon as I entered the room I was suddenly hit with emotion and was trying not to start crying before I made it down the aisle!

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  30. says

    WOW I don’t think I made it half way through your post without crying. What a beautiful ceremony for a beautiful couple! I think it’s so sweet that your dad’s ring was melted into Ross’ ring; that is so special and unique!

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  31. joanna says

    What a gorgeous day! So much beautiful emotion caught in all the picutres. I am getting married next weekend so reading these recaps is making me more excited for my own big day!

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  32. Megan says

    I’m getting married this July so the whole wedding thing is getting VERY REAL and this post had me crying on my couch! These pictures are gorgeous and they are such a beautiful couple!

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  33. Amanda says

    So. many. tears.
    Julie, you have the gift of words. This was so beautiful; I felt like I was there too as I read! Thank you for sharing!

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  34. says

    Beautiful photos! Definitely tearing up at work; keep it together, Courtney!!

    I knew I would cry at my wedding, but my goal was to at least make it down the aisle. Fail.
    Right before we started I was doing a great job keeping my eyes dry until my MIL told me how my husband cried while writing his vows… BAH! I lost it.

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  35. Arielle M says

    Lost it when I saw the pictures of Ross crying. The emotions are so real and you can see how beautiful his love is for you which is how every man should look at his wife. Love these re-caps!

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  36. says

    Another beautiful recap of their wedding! Once again my eyes got teary! I absolutely love the cross decorated their wedding. It’s beautiful! The photography is stunning too! They sure captured a lot of special moments.

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  37. Kim says

    As a long time reader, I love how Ross has evolved on this blog! Originally introduced as “Ross, Ryan’s friend who’s single” to then being referred to Leslie’s boyfriend (sometimes nameless) to now Leslie’s husband. So cute! Looks like they had a great day.

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  38. heather says

    What a sweet, beautiful retelling. The photographer did a fantastic job of capturing special moments. Your sister is so lovely and elegant! I love the way she’s hugging Ross for their first kiss.

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  39. Kat says

    Honestly, I cannot handle this right now! You have me sobbing at my desk (which luckily is my kitchen counter because I’m working from home today!!) My maternity leave ended yesterday and I am feeling super emotional as it is. Your beautiful words and this very happy couple are putting me over the edge. What a wonderful, happy day! Congrats to all! xoxo

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  40. Alina says

    Wow, this story and pics made me cry!!! The look on their faces when they look at each other, they look so happy. I wish them all the best for their future <3

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  41. says

    What an absolutely beautiful post. I was tearing up just reading it, I cannot imagine how amazing it was to be there. I adore your family and I’ve never even met any of you. Congratulations to all of you. Their happiness most certainly shows!

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  42. says

    Only just got to read this one now as was behind on my blog reading. What a special special day! I love that he cried. I went to a wedding of close friends recently and the groom absolutely bawled and it made everyone else cry too as it was so beautiful.

    Looking forward to the final part.

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  43. says

    What a wonderful wedding photos. The wedding photographer did a great job capturing the special day for the bride and groom. Like a wedding photographer myself, it is always exciting to see amazing moments captured and the wedding day story told via images. Love the post processing of the images. Has this vintage and special look which many couples love nowadays.

    There is a good mix of candid and posed images, as well lots of details. Absolutely lovely. The couple seem like a lots of fun as well the bridal party. Thank you for sharing this story with us. The images are big inspiration for my next wedding in Los Gatos, CA next month.

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