Kate and Eric: Courtyard wedding featured family heirlooms in every part of the day | Weddings

GAME DAY They married on a Husker bye weekend, which fell the day before what would have been her grandparents’ 50th anniversary. “Every Nebraska bride will understand the struggle in trying to have a fall wedding,” Kate says. They invited 160 guests, with the bulk of their budget going toward guest experiences, like the meal and bar.

SWEETEST MOMENT They’ll never forget reading their vows to each other. “We hadn’t heard them before the ceremony. It melted my heart to hear the words Eric put together,” Kate says. Their ring bearer, nephew Kingston, stole the show with his happy demeanor. He even got offers from other engaged guests to be the ring bearer for their weddings.

UNITED WE STAND They planted an oak seed from the Nebraska Arboretum for the unity ceremony, using mason jars full of soil from the backyards of where they grew up. “We have the oak planted in a large pot and it’s doing quite well. We plan to keep it with us until we can plant it in our forever home.”

WORDS WERE ENOUGH They didn’t exchange gifts. “I’m sentimental that the vows meant more than anything else could have,” Kate says. Their favorite gift was a cake knife that Kate’s dad forged by blending pieces of steel from his farm and the Forney ranch. The handle is half walnut, from Eric’s family’s backyard, and maple, from the front yard of Kate and Eric’s first home. They also loved a case of wine sent by a winemaker friend in Napa. “Both were meaningful because they were crafted by family and friends.”

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