DestinationVows 2018

REAL WEDDINGS

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beaded sandals, courtesy of Kerry’s mom. “They look like postcards,” Mike remarked later of the professional photos taken on the beach. A few hours later, the hotel restaurant served up a scrumptious dinner of surf and turf. Everyone took goofy pictures of themselves at the Valentine’s Day photo corner and danced then night away at the resort’s disco. The day went off perfectly. But for Kerry and Mike, what really lingers from their wedding week in the sun were the in-between times: hanging out by the pool, swapping old stories with long-lost friends, and catching up. As Mike recalls, “It was easily the best week of my life.”

“We were out in 18,000 feet of water, which was something no one had done before,” Mike recalls, adding that while they didn’t catch anything, the cheese sandwiches and Red Stripe he handed out at 7 a.m. went down well. Meanwhile, Kerry and her friends spent the day living it up in Montego Bay, frolicking on a water trampoline at Jimmy Buffett’s Margaritaville and shopping at the markets. Finally, the wedding day arrived. The couple said their vows against a backdrop of blue ocean and swaying palm trees. Kerry cried, as expected. The newly-married duo cut a cheesecake right after the ceremony then had a dance in the sand. The bride stunned a white Mori Lee bridesmaid’s dress; she and the ladies wore handmade barefoot

“As you get older and people start to leave your life, you start to feel like you need to spend as much time as you can with people,” says Kerry. Kerry and Mike met on Plenty of Fish in 2009. Things were casual at first. Mike, an IT professional, liked that Kerry was genuine and smart — and he thought she was gorgeous. Kerry, who works in HR, appreciated Mike’s generosity. “He never questions helping someone out,” she shares about her husband. They laughed together a lot, but it took a few years for things to get serious. Then, in November 2015, they planned a trip to Boston where Mike, a big sports fan, took Kerry on a tour of Fenway Park. He led her up to the seats along the top of the Green Monster, the high green wall in left field. It was so cold up there, Kerry’s eyes were watering before Mike got on one knee and asked her to marry him. She immediately started crying — she cries at everything, she admits. The only thing she could say was “Are you kidding?” Mike waited it out, staying down on one knee until she finally grabbed the ring. To get help with their evolving plans, Kerry turned to DestinationVows specialist Tezra Lesage, who was working out of Kerry’s hometown of Brantford, with the hopes she could efficiently narrow down the myriad of choices facing the couple. “She made the process quite easy,” Kerry recalls. Later, Lesage worked with the team on the ground in Jamaica, effortlessly putting all their ideas into place. “She always made sure that nothing was left behind,” Kerry says. At the resort, the focus on friends, family and fun began with Kerry and Mike’s welcome bags, which took up almost an entire suitcase. This playful but practical collection of favours included flip flops, hand sanitizer and an itinerary, among other things. Resort staff decorated the couple’s resort room door and gave them custom t-shirts — and went out of their way to ensure everyone had a good time. When it came time for bachelor and bachelorette outings, the guys got up at 6 a.m. for some deep sea fishing.

GUESTS: 21 THE SPOT:

Iberostar Rose Hall Suites in Montego Bay, Jamaica THE THEME: Teal and grey; beach casual

THE BRIDE WORE: A white Mori Lee bridesmaid’s dress

THE EXPERT: Tezra Lesage, DestinationVows specialist

All photos credited to: Candid Expressions Photography

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“As you get older and people start to leave your life, you start to feel like you need to spend as much time as you can with people”

82 | Real Weddings 2018

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