July 20, 2021
Anthony and Lomina’s Safford AZ Wedding was one for the books! From their carefully thought out details to the beautiful words by Father Nicodemus to the roast pig dinner to the gorgeous sunset and their incredible traditional Kiribati dance…this wedding was packed full of touching and memorable moments.
Anthony and Lomina are kind, organized, and have a sweet energy about them that makes you want to linger a little longer just to be around them. The mixing of their families from opposite ends of the nation and cultural ties stretching across oceans was beautiful. Everyone pitched in, everyone reached out to help, and it was so beautiful to watch the families work together.
I have a special spot in my heart for teachers, so having them both be teachers added an extra layer of sweetness to the day. You can tell they are loved by their family, by their friends, and by their community.
The day started in their respective hotel rooms as they and their wedding party members got dressed and ready for the day. Sometimes in those getting ready rooms things can feel tense or awkward. Not there though. From the moment their doors opened to let us in, we felt like friends and we could feel the nervous excitement in the air.
Am I the only one that loves hairspray shots? They just look so cool!
The wedding ceremony was beautiful! I love watching the rituals and traditions involved with the Catholic Wedding Mass. Father Nicodemus gave beautiful words of counsel, encouragement, and love. He spoke about how the wedding could help those in attendance to strengthen their own marriages and their resolves for the future. It was a beautiful time for reflection and we all (me included) went home with nuggets of wisdom and insight to pour into our marriages and lives.
Anthony and Lomina’s Wedding Party were fabulous. They were helpful, fun, and ready to jump in where needed!
Following the ceremony and family photos we stepped outside into the July heat for some quick portraits as Mr. and Mrs. With the rains of the previous days still fresh, it was hot and humid (well, humid for Arizona) but these two made it look like a fresh cool afternoon.
I’ve shot many weddings and wedding receptions in this building, and it never looks better than when Stasha is the one to work the decor magic. She transforms the building in the most incredible ways! This wedding was no different. From the color coded tables (purple for family, white for guests), to the lavender in the floral arrangements (you could smell it when you walked in the door, to the dropped ceiling and patio lights, the atmosphere in there was perfect!
After the First Dance we slipped over to catch some portraits as the sun was setting. We were only out for 6 minutes, but it was six minutes that were well worth the time and effort. The sun was incredible and Anthony and Lomina just glowed in the light.
Back at the reception it was time to get dinner going, group portraits taken (they had each table come take a photo with the Bride and Groom on their way to fill their plates, it was a great way to get everyone in a photo!), and get teh party started!
Lomina’s family cooked the food for the wedding dinner and it was INCREDIBLE! Every bite was perfectly delicious.
While Anthony and Lomina were changing and preparing for the traditional dance, Lomina’s sister and Maid of Honor performed a beautiful Hawaiian dance for everyone.
The Groomsmen all were called up to learn and perform a Crab Dance. They were all such good sports and had a great time!
This was phenomenal! Anthony, Lomina, and Lomina’s family all worked hard to learn the ancient Kiribati dance and song. I could have listened and watched all night long. I love the photos we got of the dance, but I wish I could attach the audio to these…it was a full experience that isn’t complete without the song. I don’t say that often about photos…but this is one time where the photos just can’t convey the whole feeling and experience. It was so full of joy and love!
And then the open dancing began and the dance floor was rarely empty!
Anthony and Lomina, thank you so much for inviting Mikaela and I into your incredible day. It has been an honor to be your sidekick through this time in your life and this season of your relationship. Watching you progress together as husband and wife, as teachers, and as community builders has been and will continue to be such a joy. Love you both!
WEDDING VENUE: St Rose of Lima Catholic Church
RECEPTION VENUE: Graham County Fairgrounds
DECOR AND COORDINATOR: Stasha with Jars and Lace
CAKE: Torey with Cakes with TLC
BOUQUETS AND CAKE FLORALS: Diana with Dianas Desert Roses
DRESS: Briliant Bridal
MENS ATTIRE: Men’s Wearhouse
BRIDESMAID DRESSES: Azazie
HAIR & MAKEUP: Melissa Makeup & Beauty
DJ: DJ Leo
PHOTOGRAPHER: Marquette LaRee
SECOND PHOTOGRAPHER: Mikaela Durfee Photography
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