Chris and Claire

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How did you Meet?

We Met Through a Mutual Friend 2 years ago and spent the night talking and dancing together. Chris came into the family (I have 2 girls from a previous relationship) and the bond between him and the girls makes it very easy for me to love him more. We have always found it easy to talk and be playful with each other.

Describe the proposal

The week before we both started back at uni, we decided to go climbing up Mt Marlow and have a picnic. It was a long walk but there were some really beautiful moments (we walked through a rainforest type part and disturbed about 100 or more butterflies which flew all around us!) It was almost dream like.

We finally made it to the top where we enjoyed 360 views of ocean and Townsville while we ate and mucked around. When we finished eating we were sitting looking at all the beautiful sites and we started a game of “who ever hits the pole first” (there was a stake sticking up out of the ground) so Chris picked a rock up and said if he hit it first he wanted a kiss, he missed! I said if I hit it first I wanted him to propose (half jokingly, as my aim is terrible and I thought I had no hope of hitting it before him!) I hit it first go and chris asked me then and there. But I didn’t take him seriously until we got home and he asked me again on the couch!

A couple of months after he proposed we found out we were expecting a baby and this news just added to the beautiful relationship we have shared together.

How did you decide on a place to celebrate your wedding?

If we could have we would have gotten married on top of Mt Marlow, however it is not really convenient with children or a wedding dress climbing to the top of a mountain! We looked for weeks on the internet at all different sorts of places and locations and in the end we settled on Rainforest Estate. Mossman is such a beautiful area with the garden/rainforest/beach settings and Christine (property manager at rainforest estate) was so helpful and friendly it made it an easy choice.

Tell us about finding your wedding dress

Well when we first started planning the wedding, we were originally just going to have our parents and our children at the wedding, it was going to be very casual, and I was going to wear my mums wedding dress or a lovely little dress I found at the op shop. And then we extended the invitation to include our siblings and my mum (Terri) convinced me to splash out and get a new dress. I tried on about 3 dresses before I found one that I just felt amazing in.  I’m not big on fashion, and the wedding dress wasn’t my main concern; it was more important for us to be able to share the day with our families.

Describe The wedding Flowers

Judith (chris’s mum) offered to help out with the flowers, as I just wanted something simple and cost effective. We decided to have a go making our own flowers. We had a couple of practice runs and were happy with how they turned out, and every time they were different . On the wedding day, Judith made the bouquet, my headpiece, chris’s buttonhole, some chair decorations and bouquets for my daughters (with some help from Carly and Anna) I couldn’t have asked for a prettier result. I loved how they turned out and I think Judith did a fantastic job.

Describe your wedding cake

We chose not to have a wedding cake.

What was your biggest challenge while planning your big day?

It was very hard sticking to the budget.  We did a lot of research online and we found a lot of inspiring pictures.  It was hard to choose the finer details. Luckily we have wonderful families who helped us out, and starting out with a very simple plan allowed us a bit of leeway when we changed our minds on a few things. Finding enough doilies for the table decorations was also a bit of a challenge haha.

What was the most memorable moment about your wedding day?

Claire: It is hard to pin point an exact moment, the whole day was full of so many different emotions. Getting ready at the same location meant I had to keep hiding so chris wouldn’t see me getting my hair and make up done or my dress, I was feeling very nervous about being centre of attention (which my family will tell you is a big change from when I was little).  Walking down the isle, I couldn’t get to chris’s side fast enough! I just wanted to be next to him and give him a big hug. I loved the ceremony but I loved having our photos done even more. It was nice to be able to kiss and cuddle as much as we wanted and take a walk around the beautiful property together.

I loved holding Claire’s hand during the ceremony, I remember looking into her eyes (she looked so beautiful).  I was indescribably happy when I was putting the ring on her finger reciting my vows that my eyes were getting teary.   I will always remember her on our day.

Did you write your own vows?

Sort of. We had a script written up by our celebrant (Anne Spragg) and we went through it together, rewording parts to make it suit our personalities better. When it got to the vows we used a bit from what Anne had supplied, a bit from things found on the internet and a bit in our own words. So we spent a lot of time on the whole ceremony. We wanted to include our children too, so having vows that we read to them and a gift for them meant that they could feel like a special part of our day as they are a huge part of our lives.

Where are you going for your honeymoon?

Having young children and a tight budget made the honeymoon a last priority for us. We didn’t want to be away from our children for too long. So we stayed on at the Rainforest estate (by ourselves, for a few extra days and just relaxed and explored the area together and enjoyed each others company. It was lovely and relaxing and we have the rest of our lives to honeymoon.

What’s next for you guys?

Buying a house, raising our children, and growing old together; as well as all the exploring and adventures in between. We love nature and exploring new things so maybe a bit of travel when time and money permits!