Revisit: The Vows

Today marks our first anniversary. One year ago we said “I do.” To say the past year has been one of wonder would be an understatement. I never knew the kind of love I could share with another person until I spent a year as G’s wife. We’ve had both ups and downs, but overall this past year has been a dream. We have wrestled through job changes and school schedules. We bought our first home and invested in a number of house projects. We’ve welcomed a nephew into the family and a puppy into our home. We’ve found ourselves stranded on the roadside, lost in unknown cities, and scratching our heads at the mysterious substance slowly continuing to crawl down our walls. And through all the trials and troubles and momentous memories, I could not be prouder of the man God has placed into my life to witness it all by my side. They say the first year is always difficult, but if the rest of our years roll the way this past one did, I will be completely content.

So, in honor of our one year, I’m throwing a flashback to our wedding vows and the promises we made on June 16, 2018 and continue to make every single day to one another…


G and I both wrote our own wedding vows. It took me several weeks to come up with the exact phrasing I wanted to vow to my husband while at the altar. And since I wanted to be mentally, emotionally, and spiritually present when I wrote them, I waited until the night before our rehearsal to finalize them completely.  For once, I was intentionally last minute!

As we stood before the Lord and our family and friends to exchange our vows for the first time, we met one another’s eyes and shook our heads in acceptance and agreeance of the promises being made.  It was the moment that I looked forward to the most on our wedding day: becoming one before God and the people we love. As beautifully surreal as this moment was, I was so caught up in emotion during the moment that it was difficult to focus on the words we were vowing to one another. I remember the sincerity of G’s voice though and the genuineness of his words.

With two weeks of marriage behind us, I decided to reread his vows to me and WOW.  His words have an impact on my heart, but a thousand-fold more than on our wedding day. I do not believe I can ever read his promises too many times. My heart is so full.

Exchanging vows beyond your wedding day is a powerful thing. For years to come, G and I will have these written promises to one another to revisit. In hard times, during fights, when that honeymoon phase finally diminishes — our crumpled paper vows will be waiting to remind us of the plans we have as a couple and the reason why we made those plans.

His Vows

My Ashley, I could never have imagined the magnitude of God’s love before He brought us together. I will never forget the first time I looked across the room of our Bible study group and our eyes met. I knew at that moment I would never be the same. Now, here we are standing before each other and our loved ones in the presence of God. I’m extremely humbled and at the same time ecstatic to step into eternity with you as my best friend, lover, accomplice in mischief, teacher, and comforter. With God as our source of strength, we can accomplish anything, weather any storm, and love more than could be imagined. You are the most beautiful woman, in every aspect, that I have ever laid eyes on. You were put into my life to fill what was missing and to compliment what was already there. You make me want to be the best that I can be and the man you deserve. You encourage me through struggles and rejoice with me through triumphs. There is so much I expect out of myself to be your husband. If I fail at everything else but am the husband God has called me to be for you, then I will be content and consider that a success.

Sweetheart, I promise to honor you at all times. I promise to love you with all that I am. I promise to forgive you when I am offended. I promise to always be your rock and source of strength when you are weak. I promise to cherish you until my last breath. I promise to set a godly example as the leader of our family. I promise to always pursue you and never stop growing together. I promise to give you all that I am.

Ashley, I will love you forever and always.


Her Vows

Grant, today I take you to be my husband.

I am making a commitment to you, and with God’s help I promise to you these things:

I promise to give you the best of myself.

I promise to honor you and trust you and respect you for the person you are. I promise to treat your needs, interests and goals as I do my own.

I promise to grow and change alongside you, to become the people we are meant to be together for the remainder of our lives.

I promise to share your joy, to bring my joys to you first, and to choose joy in our relationship each and every day.

I promise to let you win every now and then on game nights. I promise to equally split our Netflix watching between the Office and everything else available. I promise to try and choose a restaurant by at least the third time you ask. I promise to continue to pretend knowing what you’re talking about when you discuss TIG welders and all other machining lingo. And I promise to hold you accountable to early morning workouts and evening sunset walks.

I promise to not only be your partner in life, but your best friend.

And most of all, I promise to love you with my whole heart forever and always.


To G: just as our first dance’s song lamented, “We’ve come so far since that day, and I thought I loved you then…” I’m excited to walk into this second year of marriage with you, and for all the blessings and challenges God has waiting for us. Thank you for not only being my best friend, but the answer to my prayers, my partner-in-crime, and both my biggest fan and biggest opponent. You keep me humble. You keep me steady. You’re my everything, babe.

All my love, friends, 

Wedding Shots: Ceremony Details

Incoming: the next few weeks my “Wedding Wednesdays” will be featuring none other than OUR WEDDING PICTURES! I was beyond excited to find the adorable rose gold flash drive in our mailbox this past Friday from our amazing photographer Staci of Dear Olive Photography. Over 500 images captured our wedding day beautifully, and, yes, some tears may have been shed.

Now I’m not going to share every. single. photo. But I am going to share a few highlights of the day including our ceremony details, bridal party portraits, couple portraits, and reception details. I am so in love with these pictures, and am excited to share them with the blogging world. I hope you enjoy the next few weeks!

G and I fell in love with each of our rings upon first viewing. As someone who wears jewelry every day for work, I have a bit of OCD when it comes to matching metals. I like to wear all gold or all silver, and only mix when necessary. So I chose mixed metal rings so I would always match no matter what necklace/earring/etc choice I make. My engagement ring is platinum and my wedding band is rose gold. I plan to get another rose gold band for above my engagement ring in honor of my first child. G’s ring is rose gold as well with a tungsten carbide center. He chose the rose gold due to its uniqueness, and it just so happened to match mine as well!

Our main decorations were candles at both the ceremony and reception. Otherwise, I kept things as simple as possible. The candles were all mix matched in styles and heights. For the guestbook table, I used a wooden trough I found antiquing for our programs, and a galvanized “S” given as a gift. The church had a hydrangea arrangement downstairs I was able to borrow. Our friend drew a beautiful chalk board welcome sign. We wanted the aesthetics of the day to be downplayed as the ceremony itself was the most important part, so we kept everything effortless and rustic.

Inside the sanctuary, I kept the woodsy/outdoorsy feel. My cousin had a few cherry trees needing removed on their farm, so my dad went and cut ten logs about two-feet tall. The logs were weathered and mossy, and were so beautiful for acting as runners of the aisle. I printed snippets of 1 Corinthians 13 and rested them against the logs so the passages were read as you walked to your seats:

Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails.

The last phrase, “Love never fails.” sat at the altar where our tree ceremony was set. (You can find out more about our tree ceremony here.) A rose gold sequin runner lay across the altar under our little evergreen, and other pops of pink were found in scattered bouquets placed along the aisle.

Ugh. I adore that smile G gave me when our eyes first met when I began my walk down the aisle.

And then about twenty minutes later…

… we were officially Mr. and Mrs. G.

Next week I’ll be sharing a few more, but until then, friends, 

The Vows

G and I both wrote our own wedding vows. It took me several weeks to come up with the exact phrasing I wanted to vow to my husband while at the altar. And since I wanted to be mentally, emotionally, and spiritually present when I wrote them, I waited until the night before our rehearsal to finalize them completely.  For once, I was intentionally last minute!

As we stood before the Lord and our family and friends to exchange our vows for the first time, we met one another’s eyes and shook our heads in acceptance and agreement of the promises being made.  It was the moment that I looked forward to the most on our wedding day: becoming one before God and the people we love. As beautifully surreal as this moment was, I was so caught up in emotion during the moment that it was difficult to focus on the words we were vowing to one another. I remember the sincerity of G’s voice though and the genuineness of his words.

With two weeks of marriage behind us, I decided to reread his vows to me and WOW.  His words have an impact on my heart, but a thousand-fold more than on our wedding day. I do not believe I can ever read his promises too many times. My heart is so full.

Exchanging vows beyond your wedding day is a powerful thing. For years to come, G and I will have these written promises to one another to revisit. In hard times, during fights, when that honeymoon phase finally diminishes — our crumpled paper vows will be waiting to remind us of the plans we have as a couple and the reason why we made those plans.

His Vows

My Ashley, I could never have imagined the magnitude of God’s love before He brought us together. I will never forget the first time I looked across the room of our Bible study group and our eyes met. I knew at that moment I would never be the same. Now, here we are standing before each other and our loved ones in the presence of God. I’m extremely humbled and at the same time ecstatic to step into eternity with you as my best friend, lover, accomplice in mischief, teacher, and comforter. With God as our source of strength, we can accomplish anything, weather any storm, and love more than could be imagined. You are the most beautiful woman, in every aspect, that I have ever laid eyes on. You were put into my life to fill what was missing and to compliment what was already there. You make me want to be the best that I can be and the man you deserve. You encourage me through struggles and rejoice with me through triumphs. There is so much I expect out of myself to be your husband. If I fail at everything else but am the husband God has called me to be for you, then I will be content and consider that a success.

Sweetheart, I promise to honor you at all times. I promise to love you with all that I am. I promise to forgive you when I am offended. I promise to always be your rock and source of strength when you are weak. I promise to cherish you until my last breath. I promise to set a godly example as the leader of our family. I promise to always pursue you and never stop growing together. I promise to give you all that I am.

Ashley, I will love you forever and always.


Her Vows

Grant, today I take you to be my husband.

I am making a commitment to you, and with God’s help I promise to you these things:

I promise to give you the best of myself.

I promise to honor you and trust you and respect you for the person you are. I promise to treat your needs, interests and goals as I do my own.

I promise to grow and change alongside you, to become the people we are meant to be together for the remainder of our lives.

I promise to share your joy, to bring my joys to you first, and to choose joy in our relationship each and every day.

I promise to let you win every now and then on game nights. I promise to equally split our Netflix watching between the Office and everything else available. I promise to try and choose a restaurant by at least the third time you ask. I promise to continue to pretend knowing what you’re talking about when you discuss TIG welders and all other machining lingo. And I promise to hold you accountable to early morning workouts and evening sunset walks.

I promise to not only be your partner in life, but your best friend.

And most of all, I promise to love you with my whole heart forever and always.


Did you write your own vows as well? I would love to read them. Feel free to share them below in the comment section OR you can DM them to me on Instagram @uncorkingpeonies.

All my love, friends, 

Real Wedding: Rachel + James

When I think of my childhood, there is one smiling face that shows up in more than half of my memories and that is the face of my friend Rachel. Our friendship has been nothing short of adventurous: from riding ATVs up north with no helmets and watching her cousin bite worms in half in order to “fish better” to staying up ungodly hours of the night to watch trash TV to cruising the Caribbean twice to witnessing drug busts in the nation’s capital to acting as one another’s wedding Plus One’s to surviving puberty, high school, and a number of break ups, we have done so much together!

Needless to say, when Rach texted me one January morning to tell me she was now engaged to her high school sweetheart, my heart was bursting! Not only because IT WAS ABOUT TIME, but also because our conversation turned to wedding plans and logistics. As an event coordinator at the Winery still, I started to cry when she took me up on my offer to host her intimate nuptials at my venue AND allow me to help coordinate the Big Day.


Rachel and Jimmy began dating our senior year of high school. Like most early relationships, they did wander from one another after graduation, but it didn’t take long for their hearts to call them  back together. What is meant to be will always find a way! They both have adventurous, wanderlust hearts (traveling the world is one of their shared passions) and have enough differences to balance one another in a strong partnership.

Jimmy proposed to Rachel on Christmas Day.  As his family watched, a beautiful solitaire gold ring was found by Rachel tied with a ribbon around the collar of their new puppy, Hopper. Jimmy fell to his knee and the rest is history…

Having discussed their wedding ideals prior to the engagement, both Jimmy and Rachel knew exactly the kind of celebration they wanted: an intimate affair surrounded with their closest loved ones. Both fearing the crowds of a large to-do, they opted to spend their expenses on a month-long honeymoon to explore the world together rather than a lavish party. Perhaps a reception sometime in the future, but for now they were seeking somewhere small, cozy, and preferably rustic.

Cue me!

When Rachel told me what sort of venue she was seeking and her budget, I knew exactly where (and who) should “run this show.” My Winery’s special event space boasted an adorable fireplace ideal for a ceremony’s backdrop, wood beams for a rustic feel, and all the wine imaginable. Plus the rental fee was exactly within the bride’s margins! Without much persuading, Rachel came, saw, and placed a deposit on the space for a date only two weeks in the future for her wedding. And so the preparations began…

The wedding would host both the groom’s and bride’s immediate family. This meant grandparents, parents, siblings, and nieces and nephews only. The group planned to go out for dinner following the ceremony, so only light hors d’voures were needed. As for decor, Rachel’s mom and I worked with the most simplistic of tools to bring a light, airy feel to the venue: tulle, organza, Mason jars, and baby’s breath were all it took.

With less than two weeks to prepare, Rachel’s savviness was impressive! She found her wedding dress (a gorgeous ivory lace gown) at a local bridal shoppe. The gown was a floor sample and just happened to fit this bride like a glove! Seriously! Look at this stunning bride!

Rachel dressed and prepped in my office upstairs as Jimmy took residence in the office across the hall. Skipping tradition, the two met before the ceremony to capture the “first look” and share a bottle of wine. When time, Jimmy took Rachel arm-in-arm and they entered the ceremony together down the staircase; the guests were silent as the beautiful couple cascaded down to say their vows.

The ceremony was officiated by the couple’s friend and tattoo artist. What felt like eternity for the couple was actually only about five minutes worth of stating vows, exchanging rings, and making the announcement of husband and wife.

Then it was time for the festivities! The couple toasted the beginning of their future with a bottle of 2016 Dablon Sparkling Chardonnay  and a beautiful naked cake created by an amazing pastry chef (and high school friend) to provide a sweet treat for guests and couple alike. The vanilla cake with raspberry filling paired well beside other bottles of wine being sampled by the family as all present celebrated the growth of their families.

The after-ceremony celebration involved a lot of mingling, hugging, and well-wishes for the newlyweds.

It was so amazing to witness this intimate affair and see the happiness in my friend’s life. There were many laughs throughout the afternoon as we all mingled and shared stories of the past and dreams of the future.

And though I loved every moment of the ceremony, one of the most memorable moments of the day for me was when the photographer, the newlyweds, and I ventured around the Winery for a photo shoot. Anji, the photographer, and her assistant Andrew were an awesome team to witness.

First we went to the Winery’s barrel room. Anji had me cut the overhead lights and highlighted the couple using a lighting rod. Then we took to the vineyards and patio. Thankfully there was limited snow for a Michigan January! The weather was actually misting, but temperatures were not below freezing. The gray sky assisted in accentuating the colors of the photographer’s subjects. After a bit of fun outdoors, we moved into the tasting room for the finale — and a little wine.

The process Anji went through to capture these images was incredible — that woman is ridiculously talented — and her final products speak for themselves:

For a dreary Michigan Sunday in January, the love and warmth of this ceremony melted all coldness from the world. Ending their celebration with a wine tasting, the couple quickly and easily packed up their belongings and headed to a great dinner with their families…

And off into the rest of their happily married lives together.

I am so thankful to have been able to be a part of this momentous day for my long-time friend. I am even more thankful she was so gracious in granting me permission to her wedding photographs and freedom to write a little piece on this intimate affair. I love ya, Rach!

Venue: Dablon Vineyards
Photographer: Anji Monique Photography
Cake: Mandy Krause of Love and Macarons
Event Coordinator: Ashley Wall

Pop the Cork (aka The Beginning)

Welcome to the beginning! The beginning of a project I have been imagining for some time now, and finally found the empty minutes (how?!) to tie together and reform this little corner of the Blogosphere for my own space: Uncorking Peonies.

Uncorking Peonies, in its most basic breakdown, is a wedblog. Sweet and simple. The love of my life, my partner in crime, the Cool Whip to my Pumpkin Spice Oreo (#basicwhitegirlstatus) got down on one knee mid-September and asked me to be his wife, and now we’re busily planning a wedding among already busy life schedules.

My name is Ashley and I am a 20-something event coordinator hailing from Michigan. As you may have gathered from the tagline of this blog (and the various photos of wine glasses and wine bottles), I’m a bit of a wine enthusiast. This is due to the fact that I actually work as an event coordinator for the wine club of a local winery; I am surrounded by wine and am hit with wine knowledge 24/7. It is a pretty great gig, especially given the fact one my great passions is event planning. Nothing makes me happier than bringing people together for a fun and spirited party!

When I graduated from college, I was blessed to roll straight into my dream job — I worked as a wedding coordinator at a venue on the sandy beaches of Lake Michigan. During my seven months of working at this venue, I hosted 70 weddings and events, and with each passing couple my heart fell more in love with the wedding world. When I left to take a career in the wine industry (the horror!), it was in true sorrow as my passion was for the events and wedding world… but due to other circumstances, I was carried away for a few years. So, when the opportunity opened for me to have both the wine industry paired with events, I jumped! Now I host exclusive wine club events at my premium winery for my 750+ club members, as well as the occasional rehearsal dinner and bridal shower.

I also wear a variety of hats throughout my community and keep myself very busy. I am your typical 21st-century woman, after all. I sit on a number of volunteer committees, partake in Bible studies and book clubs, play in a volleyball league, love spending time with my family and wonderful fiance, and value my friends and social life. I live Life very glass-is-half-full and always approach situations with a smile.

Unfortunately, though, my career life still does not allow me to have myself elbow-deep in the wedding world. So, my fiance and I are diving head first into wedding planning and taking it upon ourselves to do as much of the prep-work, decor-construction, and handiwork necessary to make our wedding feasible and budget-friendly. In only a few weeks time, our unique skills, talents, and connections are making wedding planning quite the adventure! I started compiling a list of every little achievement and hiccup along the way and, being an English major and wanna-be writer, figured a wedblog was just the outlet for such a compilation!

Perhaps these little ramblings will give some other bride-to-be an idea, or a conversation might be struck up between bride to bride and provide some inspiration in a situation — I am all about helping one another out!

On Uncorking Peonies I’ll be covering some of the following topics:

  • Keeping to a set (feasible) budget,
  • Hosting a non-traditional wedding,
  • How to manage pre-wedding stress,
  • Do-it-yourself projects with a rustic touch,
  • Dodging the wedding fee hurdles,
  • and Truly making The Day about you and your love!

This is the one thing you’ll see me continue to reiterate throughout my posts: your wedding day is a day to celebrate the love between your partner and yourself. Be sure to focus on that love above all else; your guests will ultimately forget the day, but your partner and you will not — be sure it is how the two of you envision it, and choose to have moments meant only for you two! My most memorable weddings were the ones which were evident how much the couple were in love — the entire room was dense with the emotion.

THAT is how I want my wedding to be. That is my goal. That is what this wedblog is aiming to portray and inspire.

So, please, join me with a glass (or bottle!) of wine as I journey to the aisle…

Here we go!