sally & fraser’s achmelvich beach wedding

We are so thankful a family friend from Achmelvich recommended Monika to us! She went above and beyond to help us plan our ceremony and tailor it so it represented my husband and I perfectly and was in keeping with our values and what we want our marriage to mean to us. Monika was amazing at keeping us on track with what needed to be done and was always on hand to answer any questions we had. I never knew how much paperwork there was to fill out or even considered some of the minor details that need planned to make the day run as smoothly as possible but Monika made sure we knew exactly what to do and when it needed done for. As our ceremony was planned during COVID we were unable to meet Monika before the wedding day but we felt so comfortable with her and felt as if we’d known her along time. She paid so much attention to the details in our story and that was the most special part of the ceremony for us. My husband and I don’t really talk often about our feelings to others but on the day we got to share our story with our families and close friends, in the most amazing setting and in the perfect words. We couldn't have asked for a better day and we truly believe Monika played a key role in helping us achieve all we wanted for our ceremony
sally & fraser
sally & fraser
Sally & Fraser’s wedding was special for a variety of reasons. To start with it was to be held on my ‘local beach’ at Achmelvich, a place not just important to me but also the couple and especially Fraser’s family, who have been coming here for a summer holiday for more than 25 years. Fraser told me how it had actually been Sally’s idea to have their ceremony here this year (with a big party closer to their home next year), because she knew how much he loves this place, and how happy he was that she now loves it too and that the wedding will allow Sally’s family to now also have special Achmelvich memories.
What made the day special also was that after the young couple’s ceremony, Fraser’s parents, Ann & Gair, were planning to renew the vows of their 47-year marriage. Whilst it was important to them to leave centre stage to their son and his bride, to affirm a long, established marriage after witnessing a newly created one, would inevitably add something unique and very moving.
Following lots of emails since early in the year, I met Sally & Fraser on zoom later in the spring to hear their story and get a feeling for their ideas for the ceremony. They wanted something that fitted with the casual outdoor setting and which did their love story justice – simple and heartfelt. The very core reading of their ceremony was to be a piece written by a friend and gifted writer, especially for their wedding. As a celebrant, I see it as my role to present all options, and yet when ‘simplicity’ emerges as the overall tone of a ceremony then it needs me to confidently step back from the long menu of bells and whistles and distill the true essence of what a couple is about into the words I say, and the transitions I create between their story, their vows and the exchange of rings. After discussing various options we decided on the vow renewal straight after Sally & Fraser’s ring exchange, seamlessly transitioning from the new promises to pledging continued love and support. Two of Fraser’s brothers contributed a reading from the New Testament, 1 Corinthians 13, which their mother had read at both of their weddings and which provided a beautiful spiritual element.
The wedding day itself was a beautiful Highland summer day, just what everybody was hoping for! The beach was busy and yet there is always something very special about a wedding party generating their own circle and bubble of love and cheer that creates just the perfect boundary to the hustle and bustle of everything else going on around them. The sea was a beautiful turquoise and the sand Caribbean white as the ceremony unfolded and both couples celebrated their union – one new, one established.
Thanks, Sally & Fraser for letting me be part of your very special Achmelvich memory, which I have now added to my collection!
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