The west coast of Scotland has been battered with four days of the fiercest winter storms and James and Laura had their little moment of calm respite amidst the wild weather. It was a brilliant day. I can imagine the prospect of a beautiful crisp clear winter’s day, wonderful friends and family, fluffy snow on the ground, a hip flask to warm the cockles, and the warmth from the love of two soulmates, is how we’d all describe the perfect and very romantic winter wedding. James and Laura got nearly all of the features they planned for – they forgot about the gale force winds, driving snow, and a wind chill factor of minus 12! It may have been freezing outside but it was beautiful inside and when oh when will we Scots ever allow the weather to upset a guid wedding?
At one point I was soaked and shivering in the blizzard as I raced from the front door of the magnificent old parish church in Uddingston to the waiting cars at the end of the church gardens – but it was worth it just to see Laura and her dad John in the back of the bridal car, nervous but excited for what was to follow. They would later dance together to the best wedding song ever, “I Loved Her First”, a song any Dad will struggle to cope with on first listen but a beautiful song for a sloppy old photographer to get misty eyed to.
James and Laura are very much in love. The photographs on the walls of her mum and dad’s house show years of togetherness and confirmed they were marrying each other’s best friend. In doing so they managed to provide a right royal celebration for their friends and family! Everything was perfect – flowers, dresses, cars, church, hotel, food, booze, music and dancing – everything they touched had turned to gold. The flowers were breath-taking and I don’t think I’ve seen so many beautiful flowers at a single wedding. The stunning dresses were meticulously prepared by Stephanie from Bibbidi Bobbidi Boo in East Kilbride – a personal dressing service included! The Rev Fiona McKibbin is my kind of minister – a warm and welcoming person who conducted a service containing exactly the right combination of traditions, romance, and laughter – only the very best ministers pull this off so convincingly. The party moved to the Radstone Hotel outside Larkhall (formerly the Shawlands Park Hotel) but a place where recent significant investment has created one of the finest wedding venues in Scotland – it was glorious, beautifully presented and very well managed by wedding co-ordinator Stephen. I’ll look forward to a return sometime soon.
When I first met Laura and James they talked excitedly about Laura’s brother and sister in law in New Zealand and how the wedding had been planned to coincide with their return home to Uddingston over Christmas. Of course all great plans are tested and although it was great to hear recently that Ian and his wife are expecting a baby in February, it was unfortunate that this meant they were unable to make the trip back for the wedding. There was a wee magical moment when they called Laura via Skype just before she left for the church – the modern wonders of the world made sure they were both with her and James in spirit.
The whole day was beautifully put together and I would like to thank everyone involved for their help and their patience. James and Laura’s supporting cast were magnificent – take a bow Jennifer, Pauline, Lisa, Murron, Evie, Charles, James, Lee, and both sets of parents Maureen, John, Nancy and Charlie. Special thanks to Laura and James – you both did a grand job and it was such a pleasure to be part of your special day. I know you will have a great life together as Mr & Mrs Dillon and here are a few reminders of your perfect day……..