Real Wedding Wednesdays: Ivory and David at the Taharaa Mountain Lodge in Estes Park, CO

The couple featured in today’s real wedding blog got in touch with me after their photographer, Centennial, Colorado’s own Kim Nodurft , referred them to me. Their wedding took place at the beautiful Taharaa Lodge in Estes Park, CO and was coordinated by Jessica Adler. Thank you for the referral, Kim!


Kim’s most distinct note about the happy couple, Ivory and David, was their ability to dance. She mentioned that the groom teaches dancing and almost everyone at the wedding were dancers. Because the couple also owns another company and never told Kim they could dance, she received an incredible surprise when they came out for their first dance at the reception. She said it was amazing!


Please read on for more details about Ivory and David’s wedding, as shared by the bride:

Susan: How did you and your spouse meet?
Ivory: David and I met through a dance circuit that we both competed in. He actually knew and was friends with my parents before me. Every year we attended an event called the New Mexico Dance Fiesta in Albuquerque where I lived at the time. So during the event in 2004, I was in the bar with a friend and he walked by and saw us in there and came over to say hello. Previous to this year, I had always been in a relationship and never really talked to him too much. But we hit it off at the bar and the rest is history, as they say!


Susan: Tell us about the proposal.
Ivory: David and I had planned a trip to Cancun in the summer of 2007. Honestly, marriage wasn’t even on my mind at that point – I figured it would happen when it happened. On the flight in to Cancun I made a joke about how we would have so much less paperwork if only we were married. He didn’t crack a joke as he normally would have, but I thought nothing of it. We had planned to go to one really nice dinner while in Cancun, and upon arrival the concierge recommended an oceanside restaurant called Lorenzillo’s, so David made reservations. Little did I know, he had called weeks ahead and made reservations. We went to dinner at sunset and sat outside on the water. When our food arrived, I decided I needed to take a quick trip to the ladies room and David made a huge deal of getting the waitress so she could put my food under the heat lamp while I was gone…but if you know David, it’s not that crazy. That was the opportunity he used to give the waitress my ring. Dinner continued and we ordered dessert and champagne. When it came, there was a beautiful strawberry in the bottom of my champagne glass flowered out as a rose. We were eating dessert and I noticed that he had stopped talking. So I took a drink of my champagne and noticed a HUGE ring stuck right down in the middle of the strawberry. At that point, David came over and got down on one knee and asked me to marry him. I, of course, said yes and promptly drank my champagne to get the ring out. David dunked it in my water glass and put it on my finger.


Susan: Why did you choose your particular wedding location?
Ivory: We both wanted a location that was unique and had a “rustic” feel. We knew we didn’t want a hotel ballroom or anything of the sort, and when I walked into the Taharaa Mountain Lodge in Estes Park, CO, I just knew it was perfect. The owners were fantastic. The ballroom was gorgeous with mountain views and it was in our budget.


Susan: What was it like for you on the morning of your wedding?
Ivory: It was awesome. I had breakfast with my maid of honor and another friend and then started the process of hair and makeup at our hotel. It was stress-free and totally relaxing.


Susan: What were your thoughts as you walked down the aisle?
Ivory: I was super nervous. I felt anxious and excited and just didn’t want to mess up my vows.


Susan: What was the most memorable part of the day for you and your spouse?
Ivory: I would have to say for us it was seeing our parents so happy. We’ve both never seen our parents have permanent smiles on their faces for such a length of time, and for us that’s what it was all about. Making sure our families and guests enjoyed themselves.


Susan: Were there any particular elements of your wedding day that you considered unique or personal touches?
Ivory: I don’t know if it’s unique, but I think our centerpieces were truly something special and that I had never seen before. We had these bright orange/red sunflowers and twigs inside an aspen tree log. They were so beautiful.


Susan: Based off of your experience, would you share some advice for other brides and grooms who may still be planning their weddings?
Ivory: I would just offer them the advice that you don’t have to spend a ton of money to have a spectacular wedding. Focus on the details that are important to you and make sure you have an awesome photographer. Because at the end of the day, you don’t remember every moment, but the pictures truly capture them.


Thank you, Ivory and David, for sharing the details of your wedding with all of us! Do you have a real wedding story you would like to share? If so, please email me at the address below with your experience and some photos. You might be the next bride featured in this wedding blog!

If you have questions on this or any other wedding related topic, please post for me here or send me an email to susan(dot)southerland(at) Also become a fan on Facebook and follow me on Twitter.

Your partner in perfect planning,