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bride and groom beautiful sunset

Kristyn and Mike are a fun loving couple who were looking to celebrate their union in what they describe as “a fancy dance party”. Selecting their venue, Limoneira Company, was a surprised to Kristyn as it was hidden amidst the lemon and avocado groves just a few miles away from her childhood home. Since the couple and most of their friends and family live in the LA area, they felt this was the perfect venue to enjoy a fun “mini destination wedding” being just two hours north of the LA area. Kristyn remembers, “It was the first venue we looked at, as soon as we drove onto the property we decided it was perfect for the style we wanted to go with”. Read more in today’s Real Wedding, as Kristyn and Mike describe their special day and share their advice on planning for their wedding day.

wedding party bus bride and groom
wedding bus

A highlight from our day was the transportation from the hotel to the venue. This was something we were really looking forward to as we incorporated it into our first look. We rented a pimped out school bus, from the incredible people at Jump on the School Bus, where we had the entire wedding party get into the bus and blindfold Mike. I stood at the doors of the bus and they uncovered his eyes at the top of the stairs. It was awesome to have that moment in such a fun atmosphere with our closest friends cheering in the background.

wedding in the mountainspretty wedding decor with baloons
flower girls with balloons

There were a few things I added in that were non-traditional from beginning to end. One touch I was excited about was the use of balloons. I knew I wanted flowers but that I also wanted something different along with them so we used giant tasseled balloons and streamers for the ceremony backdrop that we later used for the photo booth backdrop as well. We had the kids in the wedding carry them during the processional as well.

bride and father walking down the islegroom waiting for bridebride and groom getting married

The groom’s brother was in school for theology so we wanted him to officiate for us and he did an amazing job. The three of us felt that that was such a special moment for us and it really helped with our nerves. We knew that if there was a hiccup during the ceremony we could all just look at each other a laugh a little.

bride and groom laughing with wedding partywedding ball gamewedding lemonade standwedding program krafty

As for the playful activities: during cocktail hour the guests played bocce ball since the venue had bocce courts and the venue allowed them to walk through the orchard and pick fruit (our program was stapled to a paper bag for all their goodies), guests were able to ride a trolley car to the reception site, we replaced a guestbook with mad libs, and I hand made all of the photo booth props to get a specific “whimsical” feel to them.

wedding party goovy photobride with white dress and flowers

As we are a very playful couple, this was our inspiration for the day. We wanted that feel to come through with bright colors, activities for our guests, and awesome music. Mike wanted good drinks and food while I wanted something unique and whimsical with a modern vintage feel. I also had a mini arrow theme that ran throughout that matched my “in memory of” tattoo for my dad. He had passed away two months before the wedding and it helped me feel like he was there all along the way.

chalkboard table seat chartpom pom decor for wedding hangingpretty wedding favor tablebride and groom table decorwedding glass wear prettycolorful wedding cakewedding photographer looking at camera

Our photographer made the day so fun as well. Jonathan is the best at what he does and allowed for us to have fun/playful photo ops because of his high energy. The video he made for us lets us relive all the highlights over and over again. The best memory for the two of us was really to have all of our family and friends together in one place singing and dancing the night away. I was excited about the music from the day DJ Phil came into our lives. He kept the party going until the end and all of our guests loved him! .

My advice to couples who are currently in the wedding planning process…Don’t sweat the small stuff. I work 12-hour night shifts as a nurse and I would spend my sleepless nights thinking of/making small details. Don’t get me wrong, they all turned out great, but in the end I wish I would have omitted some and saved time and money. Our loved ones and our love for each other filled the room with so much joy that we didn’t really need the extras.
Also, definitely get a day of coordinator at the very least. I was so glad to have Frank, my coordinator that day and he also did my flowers. He really understood my vision and kept everyone in check. The day ran smoothly because of him and I didn’t have to worry a bit.

pretty wedding invite

The Bride & Groom chose our Simply Drawn Wedding Invitation for their wedding stationery.

Wedding Venue: Limoneira, Santa Paula, California | Photography by: Bluephoto by Jonathan Roberts

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