Sarah + Cody

Our Wedding: Umbrella Bar Ottawa

When it comes to God I’ve never really doubted his existence because there has always been evidence of it in my life. 

I’ve seen him move in my finances, in my social life, in my work and now most importantly I’ve seen him move in the biggest commitment of my life. Marriage. 

Cody and I started dating in August 2016 and were immediately long distance. I’m not talking a couple of hours. There was over 1000km between us for the first year and a half! It wasn’t until our 2nd summer of dating that we were even in the same city. 

Let me tell you, it was the hardest and most growing 3 years of my life. 

There were so many times I teetered towards the edge of calling it done. But every time I was almost finished God showed up and showed me more of the things I’d prayed for in Cody. 

I think most brides can attest to that post engagement period of questioning. Is this the right person, am I ready to get married, is this a mistake?! I hit that period hard, but mostly because it felt like everything was against us. We were engaged but a month in, we didn’t have a date, a venue, a lot of money or a real plan. We had a vague plan, but it hinged on a lot of big unknowns. Cody needed a house and a job in Ottawa. I needed a job and a visa so I could move to Virginia. We needed a house there still. All we seemed to have was problems. And then we had a conversation. Would we let this bog us down or would we use it as an opportunity to let God show up? We decided to give God the room to move. And move he did. 

I’m crying writing this. Cody cried sharing all of this at our wedding. 

Because to be standing there in front of all our guests seemed like a miracle. In the 6 months, we took to plan our wedding extraordinary things happened. 

  • Cody needed a house and a job. He got both and they weren’t what was expected but were what was needed. 
  • We needed money for the wedding and were hugely blessed by both of our parents. 
  • We needed a venue and found the perfect one for the price of the food. 
  • We needed a house, we got one and now after two months of living in it, I can say it’s better than what we’d originally lined up. 
  • We needed a car, and we got an amazing deal on a replacement for my old one. 
  • And finally, I needed a job. Two days before our wedding I found out I got one in Lynchburg. We told everyone at the wedding. The timing couldn’t have been more perfect. 
  • The day we left I got my sponsor letter and my visa. I’d get to move to my new home with my new husband. 

Our story is crazy, it’s full of ups and downs, but most importantly it’s full of God, of crazy ways he showed up and took care of us. I hope I never forget the testimony of our marriage. That I never stop loving the man God has blessed me with. That we never take being together for granted. We don’t have a right too, but people have short memories, so it’s good to have these stories, the photos, and the people to remind us of why we got married in the first place. 

I hope my work, my life, and my marriage are always a testament to the grace and provision of God. I hope that the only explanation for any future and past success is his faithfulness. 

Nitty Gritty 

Here’s all the detail stuff. We got married at the Umbrella Bar on Dow’s Lake in Ottawa. The same owner operates Lagos Bar and Grill and so they came with a ton of wedding experience. They took care of pretty much everything the day before and were very very helpful. The service staff was stellar and I always knew where to find a glass of water (key). We were so happy with the location and so thankful for the people we worked with there. I did the invitations and a bunch of the decor myself. Flowers were taken care of by a friend. I got my dress on Facebook marketplace (BHLDN brand). Mary Calote Photography shot our wedding and rehearsal dinner and she did an amazing job! It was so hard choosing which photos to share. The video was shot by Pegasus Photo/ Video and Peaking Zebra Productions will be editing it for us. I would highly recommend all of these people, all of them were extremely professional, friendly and made our day that much better. Our favors were lovingly baked by Cody’s aunt and our wedding cake was done by a good friend of mine. We had friends play music for us and the wedding was officiated by another friend. We were so overwhelmed by all the love that went into helping us plan and execute these details. It made the day so unique and special.