A Travel Blogger Wedding on the National Mall

Note: This post isn’t really travel related (unless you’re traveling to a wedding in DC I guess). If you’re not interested in wedding photos feel free to skip this one, I won’t impart any valuable travel knowledge or tips. If you’re interested in seeing the results of all that wedding stressing I was doing a few months back, read on!

I’m really excited to finally share my wedding pictures with you guys! They were done by my very talented friend Erica Kuschel from Over Yonderlust, who flew all the way from Austin to capture our event.

We planned a small wedding (less than 40 people) on a gorgeous Saturday in downtown Washington DC. Our primary planning theme was: cheap, but we tried to add in some travel touches that represented our personalities and past adventures. In the end it turned out perfect, or at least perfect to me: simple, personal and full of love.

The dress, from Eliza J

Getting a little zipper help from Mom
My Maid of Honor organized a meat delivery! Wedding diet officially over.

The ceremony was held on the National Mall at the DC War Memorial (also known as the World War One Memorial). It’s one of three spots on the Mall you are allowed to get married  and a memorial I’ve always loved. Thankfully we missed the government shutdown by a couple of weeks.

We both almost had a last minute heart attack when our officiant showed up nearly an HOUR late (apparently he had gotten the time wrong?). For awhile there it looked like we might not actually be getting married that day at all, and we tapped my Uncle to officiate an unofficial ceremony for us. Not ideal because we both wanted to be married already dammit! I was in the car, just 30 second away from arriving at the ceremony when the officiant finally showed up. We were pretty pissed but mostly just relieved!

My friend Carolyn serenaded us on violin
My Dad wore his kilt in a nod to our Scottish heritage

Mike and I wrote our own vows and I basically sobbed through the entire ceremony. Don’t think there was a dry eye in the house!


Afterwards we did a little photo shoot. The whole thing felt very surreal, particularly wandering around the Mall in a wedding dress with all the tourists snapping pics and telling me Congratulations.

Looking out over the Tidal Basin
The woman sitting here only agreed to give us the bench if we promised to never get divorced.

Then it was on to our reception, held at the Beacon Hotel near Dupont Circle.

We named each table after a country we love, with a photo of us taken there.
Our Up! guestbook

Long ago we decided to incorporate details from the Pixar movie Up! It’s one of our favorites and we love the themes of love, travel and living for the moment in the film. There were hot air balloon details on everything from our invitations to our programs.

The amazing cake from Cake Love was one of my favorite parts! We had 3 different flavors.


Our first dance, to Jack Johnson’s “Better Together”

There is no combination of words I could put on the back of a postcard
No song that I could sing, but I can try for your heart
Our dreams, and they are made out of real things
Like a, shoebox of photographs
With sepia-toned loving
Love is the answer,
At least for most of the questions in my heart
Like why are we here? And where do we go?
And how come it’s so hard?
It’s not always easy and
Sometimes life can be deceiving
I’ll tell you one thing, it’s always better when we’re together

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54 thoughts on “A Travel Blogger Wedding on the National Mall”

  1. CONGRATS! what a beautiful wedding! i especially love your dress, and that ring?! beautiful! we also danced to jack johnson at our wedding but to ‘angel’. let’s face it, jack johnson is good for any occasion : )

  2. What incredible photos! How special to be able to create these beautiful memories in such an iconic setting. Waiting for the officiant must have been super stressful, but it doesn’t show at all. Love your dress and ring!

  3. This made me tear up a bit, I love so much about it — the dress, the countries named after tables, the song — it looked like a perfect day. Congratulations again you two!

  4. SO lovely! What a gorgeous location and of course you both look amazing! Your reception looks beautiful and I loved the little Pixar and travel touches 🙂

    Thank you for sharing your special day with us!

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