The Officiate – A Photo Journal

It’s official.  I do weddings now.

Last month, my dear friend Erika that I know from Oklahoma (where we both grew up), asked me to officiate her wedding in Saint John.  Until then I had not met the groom, Skip, but I remember dreaming that I met him years ago when Erika first mentioned him, and I knew then they were meant for each other.

That’s Erika!

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We have been friends since we were about 19/20 years old.  Here’s an old picture of us below from when we first hung out together. I treasure friendships that have lasted so long, and I was more than happy to officiate the wedding.

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Erika is an amazingly talented person.  She has worked as a stage actress, and in film.

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She also does work as a makeup artist.

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Skip and Erika make an amazing couple. They are a lot of fun to hang out with. Skip is also super creative and works as a writer/director. They both want to do films together.  I remember when Skip told the story about how he met Erika. He was in a hotel waiting to be picked up for a film project that Erika was sent to get him for and she walked in to the bar and yelled his name, not knowing what he looked like. Skip said the moment he heard her voice it stirred his soul, and how amazing is it that she was calling his name.

That’s Skip!

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They basically offered me an all expenses paid trip to the Virgin Islands, which is where they got engaged. They rented two amazing houses with beautiful ocean views, and a few jeeps. There was the quiet house, mostly for the older family members, and then there was the party house for the younger crowd.

Some of Erika and Skip’s best friends were able to come to the event. I got the best of both worlds. Secured a place to sleep in the quiet house but spent most of my waking hours at the party house. I am normally asleep by midnight but, I was on West Coast time, so my body didn’t mind staying up till 3am. I was the only one there that didn’t drink alcohol but we all had a lot of laughs and I made friends with everyone.

The wedding was held at Trunk Bay in the late afternoon.  It was beautiful. We went snorkeling there the next day.

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It was wonderful and inspiring to be so present with two souls like this on their wedding day. Skip and Erika both wrote their own vows, though we also cocreated a ceremony together that was beautiful. It was based on an island wedding ceremony, though I changed it up a bit, added some words of my own, and a Native American Blessing at the end, since all three of us are part Native American.

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Erika had laid out in the sun too long and I hear she was wearing many layers of makeup to cover the burn but she looked great.

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I call Erika my guardian angel, and she says the same about me.  Somehow we have always been there for each other as friends in those moments when it meant the most. She reminded me of who I once was and who I wanted to be during one of the most difficult times of my life. I am forever grateful.

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Everyone came together to make this an amazing event.  And we found lots of time for snorkeling and exploring the island as well. My favorite part was when Erika spotted a school of reef squid while we were snorkeling.  We swam with them for quite a while.

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I wish these two all the best in the world.  They are such bright people, and I believe they will have an amazing life journey together.

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Thanks again, Erika and Skip, for an amazing vacation, and for getting to play such an honored role.  You guys are amazing!

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Categories: Travel

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