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  • Writer's pictureLisa Flahant

Real life weddings: Meg and Tom

Meg and Tom’s truly joyful open-air wedding ceremony took place at The Barn in South Milton on Saturday 29 July 2023…

…. And it was a ceremony blessed with unexpectedly good weather, fabulous views, much love and laughter, and one of the most adorable couples we’ve ever had the good fortune of working with!

Meg and Tom – where to start? Sometimes the stars align and the right couples just find you! We were SO delighted to receive an enquiry from Meg and Tom just over a year before their big day, explaining that once the legal paperwork was completed, they were planning a non-religious celebratory ceremony with a small group of family and friends, and were looking for the right celebrant to develop a really intimate and personal ceremony.

Sounding pretty good so far! The three of us jumped on a video call and spent a good while chatting about their vibe, and what Celebrant in Cornwall could bring to their big day. We loved that we were all very much on the same page when it came to ethos and outlook on life, and it was a bonus to discover they were in touch with some of our favourite suppliers!It was lovely and rather serendipitous to hear this from Meg,

Tom and I would love to have you as our celebrant, we really felt you understood the atmosphere we'd like at our wedding and I think you'll fit in really well with our family and friends. Thanks so much for your time and giving us such a good sense of your style!

Ahhh – this gave us all the feels! And when the time came for Meg and Tom to return their “getting to know you” couple’s questionnaires (not compulsory, but definitely a great opportunity for reflection and thought) we knew we’d hit the jackpot when they said: We've just submitted our forms - it was so lovely to sit and do together. We're both really excited!!” 

When we hear that couples are really enjoying the journey, we know their ceremony is going to be AMAZING! And we could see from the responses to our carefully crafted questions that Tom and Meg were a deeply thoughtful and honest couple indeed; they’d thought so very carefully about the information they were sharing with us, and to be honest, we felt a little nervous about ensuring their ceremony did their relationship the justice it deserved. So a first draft was sent with some trepidation, but luckily our worries were unfounded, when the feedback arrived:

The ceremony is perfect, exactly how we hoped it would be and more. Thank you so much for the work you're putting in, we are both so so glad that you'll be there to make our ceremony full of love and fun - we're very glad we found you!!

Phew – what a relief!

When their big day arrived, we’d had quite the spell of wet and windy weather (in fact the week before, it was possibly the wettest wedding we’d ever attended!), and on looking at the late July forecast, we really did think we’d be performing the ceremony inside. But as we drove into Devon, the skies brightened, the sun peeked from behind the clouds, and as we arrived at The Barn, we could see that we were all set for an outdoor ceremony – which is just what we all wanted!

It was lovely meeting Tom and the guests, before heading over to the house where Meg was getting ready with her closest people all around her, arriving just in time to see a ‘first look’ of her in her beautiful gown. Emotions were running pretty high at this point, but Meg was equally excited and ready to go out there and get wed!

When she made her entrance, there may have been a few more tears all round. We opened the ceremony with some hearty group pledges and a beautiful ring warming ritual to include all of the 21 guests. Meg and Tom’s good friend Tash entertained us with a stunning reading of the The Wedding Poem, by Neil Gaiman – rarely heard, but such a great choice! And we then proceeded to share the story of Tom and Meg – which really was the heart of their ceremony and a fabulous reminder of why these two were so right for each other.

Another of Meg and Tom’s good friends, Tyler, read Scientific Romance by Tim Pratt – a brilliantly chosen piece – and the references to alien invasions and a zombie apocalypse did have all of us howling with laughter! Yet it’s still a gorgeously romantic reading – look it up and see what we mean! And once our story had concluded, Meg’s Mum stood to read a piece she had written herself, but which was inspired by 1 Corinthians 13 – the perfect conclusion to this part of the ceremony. The rings returned, warmed and full of everyone’s good energy, and before they were placed on awaiting fingers, Meg and Tom took the opportunity to read their vows to one another – impressing us all with their ability to express their feelings to one another so honestly and perfectly. This was the highlight of the ceremony, without a doubt. Then with rings exchanged, and a big smooch – our couple could fully celebrate being married to one another – at last!

You’ve probably guessed, this was one of those truly memorable ceremonies we could really relate to, and which makes us smile just writing about it. It was therefore even more meaningful  to us when we received this email from Meg a few days later:

I wanted to email to say an absolutely enormous thank you to you for the incredible ceremony you led for us last weekend. It was the part of the day that Tom and I were both looking forward to the most, and it absolutely blew us away. Your representation of our relationship was so spot on, it felt so authentic to us and I know that our friends and family saw us in the story you told. So many people have said to us after how special it was to hear our story like that, and that it was the highlight of the day for them. I don't think we could have asked for a more perfect ceremony (definitely not crying as I write this!!!). 
Your care, thoughtfulness, openness and joy during the planning process was also invaluable to us, every time we spoke with you, we came away feeling so excited to get married and so glad that we got to have you as part of that! If we could go back and do it all again I know we absolutely would! We will treasure the memories of filling in your questionnaire, writing our vows, and experiencing our ceremony forever.
(Some friends of ours are getting married next year, and were planning to have a registrar to officiate, but after our wedding and hearing about the planning process we had with you, they are now planning to have a celebrant!) Thank you so much for everything!

What very kind words, we are truly grateful to Meg and Tom, and to every couple who takes the time to drop us a line to let us know what they thought.

Thank you so much to Tom and Meg for finding us, booking us, and helping us to create one of our favourite ceremonies. Wishing you both so much love on your continuing journey.

(Shouts out to Mark at Evolve for the fab photos (always amazing working with Mark – such a nice guy!) and a shout out to caterers VeganToYou – you also rock!)


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