I considered entering the Bride of the Year competition but it was my mum who thought it would be great and really encouraged me to enter the competition and of course the prizes were a great incentive!
I was really keen to do well, so my bridesmaids and I put the link to my entry in the Bride of the Year Competition on Facebook. A lot of family and friends put the word out for me and sent emails to their contact lists. My sister also did a vote for my sister flyer that she handed out to everyone she came in contact with!
Everyone thought it was great for me to enter and were really happy to put their vote in and support my Bride of the Year entry – they were very excited. After they had voted they kept asking me if I had won, so you can imagine their thrill once they found out I was a Bride of the Year Finalist - they became really very excited and many of them forwarded the link on to their friends and family to support me too!
One evening, when Trent and I got home Trent checked the answer machine while I was on the computer. He raced in all excited to tell me someone from True Bride had left a message for me to call them. I said I can’t call back now its too late but he insisted I call as he was sure I had won- but I didn’t want to get too excited yet. I left a message that night and they called me back the next day to tell me I was the winner of 2009 Bride of the Year Competition and I had been crowned “Bride of the Year”.
I was VERY excited and amazed that so many people had voted for me. The first person I rang to tell was my mum – she was over the moon. Trent was just as excited as I was and jokingly said “you only won because I was in the photos” then told me how proud he is to be married to the Bride of the Year. My family were so excited they couldn’t wait to tell everybody they had asked to vote that I had won.
My sister was at the Canberra wedding fair when she found out and told all of our wedding suppliers the great news and they were all really excited and so happy for me.
I’ve always wanted to be a photographer and could never afford a really good camera. The prize money will go towards a camera which will give me the opportunity to follow my dream, I am so excited to go out and buy a camera. I would like to thank True Bride for this generous amount of money and prizes and a wonderful competition.
The first time I ever saw Trent I was with my sister Kelly & her boyfriend when she was delivering some Nutrimetics to Sue a client of hers (and now my mother in-law). Trent was in the garage working on his drag car, I said to my sister ‘he’s a bit cute’ and Matt (My sister’s boyfriend) said 'I wouldn’t go there Sam, he's a close friend of mine and all he cares about is cars'.
Almost a year later we ended up being in the same group of friends since both of our best friends started dating, the first time we actually met and started talking was in Batemans bay on a weekend trip with a bunch of mates. We became great friends and hung out a lot, this was around the time that I was getting out of a long relationship and a few other things were going on in my life so I decided to drive to QLD to visit my Aunty and Cousins by myself to get away from everything, Trent called almost every day and we talked for hours.
I was only staying for 2 weeks and told him I wasn't looking forward to the long drive home by myself, the next day he had booked a flight and came to my rescue, he dropped everything he was doing to come and spend time with me and drive me home. "My knight in shining amour." I found out later that Trent had said to one of his mates when we first started hanging out 'One day I'm gonna marry that girl' - and 8 years later here we are extremely happy with a beautiful baby girl Lily.
The Wedding Proposal
I arrived home from work to a house dimly lit with so many candles and the floor layered with rose petals that led to our dining table, which was beautifully set for dinner with my favorite Thai dishes and my favorite red wine. The table had a large bunch of tall stemmed red roses and beside his plate was a single large rose.
He lifted the rose and behind it was a small velvet box which he picked up and opened up to me while he got down on one knee. 'Will you marry me?', he asked. I gave him a big smile and replied 'YES!'. It was a really romantic proposal and I will never forget it.
We had a long engagement of three years and from the time we decided on a date for our wedding it was about 10 month. We had decided on a formal wedding - for me it was like a fairy tale. We had around 95 guests (cut back from an original list of around 180) as I was really set on the location of our wedding and that's all they could fit.
It was really fun planning our wedding but also really hard as there are so many wonderful things to choose from and there were so many things I wanted. I always knew I wanted an outdoor wedding and picking the venue was easy as family friends of ours own a beautiful country resort called Goolabri in Sutton NSW which has the most delicious food, it was amazing. I made my own invitations with the help of my bridesmaids and Melita’s Invitations in Fyshwick ACT, she was really helpful with showing me how to make my invitations and utilizing each piece of paper so there was little wastage. I had a maid of honor and two bridesmaids and Trent had a best man and two groomsmen.
Our Wedding Day
Our wedding day arrived and the weather was perfect I couldn't have asked for a better day. The girls and I got ready in the homestead at the resort, the morning was really exciting. The flowers arrived while my makeup and hair were being done. I was lucky that my sister is a makeup artist and my sister in law is a hairdresser. It was a really relaxed atmosphere and the bottle of Moet that my Mum and Dad had for us in our room was well needed to calm the nerves. At this point I was glad we didn’t have the 180 guests we originally wanted. Trent and the groomsmen got ready in another room at the resort as well. The moment I put my dress on it really hit me that today was the day I was getting married after 10 months of planning and preparation. One of the most memorable moments was when the horse and carriage arrived to take me down to my husband to be.
Our ceremony was like a fairytale, it was held in February outside amongst the greenery and I had my cousins hand out bags of rose petals and fans that had a purple ribbon and our names and wedding date on them. The girls and I arrived in a white enclosed horse drawn carriage pulled by two white horses. My dad walked me down a red carpet aisle to 'Butterfly Kisses'. We did a sand ceremony to symbolize two separate lives coming together as one and then we left a little bit of each sand in each vase to show we are still individuals. After we were announced husband and wife we did a beautiful butterfly releasing where the butterflies stayed around on my bouquet for the photos. When we walked back down the aisle everyone threw rose petals in the air.
Our wedding reception was at Goolabri country resort where most of our guests stayed as we booked the whole resort out. The room was draped with white satin and fairy lights everywhere, it looked like a marquee which was a total transformation from the brick country look room it was. The table decorations were tall vases with purple, teal and silver decorative branches with fairy lights wrapped through them, the tables had tea lights all over them it looked amazing. The guests all had wish bones on their napkins that my Mamma had collected over many years, this was one of my time consuming tasks for the wedding as I had to clean and dry them. I painted them gold and dusted glitter over each one and tied ribbon that had 'wishes do come true' on all 95 wish bones, they turned out great and really went with my theme.
We had a 5 course degastation so everyone got to have a little bit of everything they had to offer - we love the food at Goolabri The big glass windows behind the bridal table showed the beautiful views of the gardens and when the sun set it looked absolutely amazing. It was such a fun and perfect evening from walking in as Husband and Wife to the bouquet and garter toss to the final goodbyes at the end. It was funny when later we smelt something burning and it turned out to be the bouquet my friend caught which she had left on the table right next to a tea light. We did a mock leaving for the video-ographer "Everclear" and then we came back to continue partying until four in the morning. It was a night to remember.
Other highlights for me was the butterfly release, the whole bridal party going to have photos taken where I had my father in law bring our miniature dachshund Pluto to have his photo taken with us. We had a best pet bow on his collar, and just the amount of fun the reception was and the feeling Trent and I had the entire day was indescribable we felt on top of the world and couldn’t have had a better wedding.
I would like to thank both of our parents for giving us the most memorable wedding that we will remember forever!
Our honeymoon was an experience, definitely not what we had planned. It started off relaxing and romantic, we stayed at Hamilton Island in a private section called the Beach Club, it was amazing, we had cocktails on arrival and champagne and chocolates in our room. We were treated like royalty, we had our own private beach and waiters came down while we were sun baking to take our drink and food orders. We visited the Great Barrier Reef, went parasailing, our resort supplied us with a picnic which we had at a lookout and enjoyed champagne and an antipasto.
Then on day 4 the weather started to change. One afternoon while sun baking on our verandah sirens started to go off and staff came to tell us we need to move to higher ground as Cyclone Hamish was about to hit the Island. There was staff running around everywhere tying down table and chairs and throwing deck chairs into the pools. We had to pack up and move to a cyclone proof building and stay in our room until further notice. The staff came around and removed all of the chairs and tables from the balconies and left us with 3 days worth of food and drink, a pack of cards, a torch, sticky tape to tape the windows and pins to close the curtains shut. We were so scared we wanted to leave the Island but nobody was allowed to leave. Every channel on the TV showed the cyclone heading straight for Hamilton Island. The next morning Trent opened the sliding door and there were cockatoos everywhere, about 15 of them came into our room, it was really cool.
It ended up moving back out to sea so we didn’t get the full force of it. Trent and I hired a golf buggy and went exploring the Island to see what damages were done. There were trees down everywhere, the whole main street had sandbags at every door and all the windows were taped. By the time we did a lap of the Island the whole Island was back to normal as if nothing had happened. The weather was beautiful again and we really got to enjoy our last couple of days of our honeymoon. It was the best holiday we ever had.