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Jackie & Riki Engagement (Ob)Session ~ 1

Happy Monday All! Today we have a special engagement session by one of my favorite photographers in the NY/NJ metropolitan area - Charmi Pena Photography! Charmi did a shoot starting with a picnic in Central Park that shows the awesome personality of NYC and the lovely couple, Jackie and Riki!

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Jackie and Riki met on a blind date - initially it didn’t go so well! Riki called her again anyway and on that second date they knew they were going to get married. They’re planning for an Aruba wedding in June of 2014 and as you can see from their engagement photos, they’re trying their best to go unique in every way they can!

Love how they planned out the props for the shoot, the beautiful cherry blossom backdrop and the little jealous doggy wanting some cupcakes and kisses! 

Part 2 coming up next!

Images courtesy of Charmi Pena Photography

A Series of Fortunate Events ~ Aparna and Karthik’s Reception

Here’s the finale to the series of Aparna and Karthik’s wedding events!

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Once again, from Aparna ~

We had a blast at our reception! We scheduled the events so that the wedding ceremony went straight into the cocktail hour which went straight into the reception. We had a lot of people told us that they loved this because they didn’t have to change outfits! For our food, we decided to have Thai appetizers and food. We catered from a restaurant called Zabb in DC and all of the food was vegetarian. For appetizers we had -steamed dumplings, crackers with green tea cream cheese, assorted sushi, and garden rolls. For the main meal we had drunken noodles, green curry with veggies, spicy eggplant, papaya salad, and rice. Dessert was my favorite part - Zabb brought mango sticky rice which is our favorite and it was delicious. My sister ordered salted caramel cupcakes from Georgetown cupcakes and they put a fondant pendant on each cupcake with our initials. My sister also made a giant cupcake to sit on top of the stand for us to cut. She made this eggless because some of our family doesn’t eat eggs. For drinks we brought our own beer and wine whch was fun because we could choose what we wanted. My sister actually had a cupcake and wine tasting party a few months befor the wedding where she had people taste and vote on different cupcakes and different wines. She made the final selection and it turned out great! There were a lot of smaller details to the reception that were also really meaningful to us:
  • Instead of wedding favors we ordered beautiful handmade cards from a project called Earn n Learn in Ahemdabad, Gujarat. It’s basically a project that provides income and skills to young children in the slums so they can help support their families. We wrote out individual notes to each of our guests (350!) and put them on their table. This was really important to me because I knew that I would not get a chance to talk to or thank every single person for coming and I wanted them to know that it really meant alot to us that they celebrate our wedding with us.
  • Instead of getting a photobooth, one of Karthik’s friends went around with a bunch of props and took pictures of people. It was great and we have some hilarious pictures
  • We did a bridal party surprise flash mob which was awesome
  • We had our two cousins as the MCs and they also sang a duet
  • We didn’t have any performances at the reception bc we wanted to leave a lot of time for dancing!

I loved all of these ideas - especially the handmade cards with personalized notes to all of the guests - wow, that is dedication!

Congratulations again Aparna and Karthik and thank you so much for sharing your wonderful series of wedding events with us! 

A Series of Fortunate Events ~ Aparna and Karthik’s Wedding

Aparna and Karthik had a a spiritual, but non-traditional ceremony.  

From Aparna ~ We decided to craft the wedding ceremony in a way that was meaningful to us. That was the most important thing - for it to really speak to us and represent who we are as individuals and as a couple. We asked Karthik’s cousin and a dear friend of mind to co-officiate it and they helped us with the script and acted as our officiants that day.

They incorporated 7-steps, a unity candle and readings by their family! They had such romantic poems and passages like this one from The Prophet by Khalil Gibran:

You were born together, and together you shall be forevermore.You shall be together when the white wings of death scatter your days.

Ay, you shall be together even in the silent memory of God.
But let there be spaces in your togetherness,
And let the winds of the heavens dance between you.

Love one another, but make not a bond of love:
Let it rather be a moving sea between the shores of your souls.
Fill each other’s cup but drink not from one cup.
Give one another of your bread but eat not from the same loaf
Sing and dance together and be joyous, but let each one of you be alone, Even as the strings of a lute are alone though they quiver with the same music.

Give your hearts, but not into each other’s keeping.
For only the hand of Life can contain your hearts.
And stand together yet not too near together,
For the pillars of the temple stand apart,
And the oak tree and the cypress grow not in each other’s shadow.

Aparna shares other details of her big day with us:

Karthik had an awesome baraat complete with dry ice “fog”. It was 103+ degrees  that day and they still danced up a storm! There were a lot of things that made the ceremony special for us - my cousin played the piano for guests as they were getting seated, the venue was beautiful and really set the mood for the occasion, we had adorable flower girls and ring boy and we had a procession with our parents, siblings, and bridal party, our siblings chose passages/poems to read for us, Karthik and I wrote our own vows, and my grandmother said a prayer in the beginning to wish us well. 

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They look so wonderfully in love! Reception is last but not least!