Having a beach wedding just two years after meeting each other may sound like an impossible dream for some. But for Niza & Andoy, this is their awesome reality. As Shawn Colvin’s ‘When You Know’ puts it, ‘when it’s clear this time you’ve found the one, you’ll never let him go.’ In this case, Niza & Andoy just didn’t let go of each other. With the vows they made, they never will.
Theirs is a wonderful story that aptly demonstrates how ‘love moves in mysterious ways’. Though it may seem that things happened pretty fast to be engaged a year after their first meeting and then get married a few months after, their story actually started years before that. It started at a time when neither knew that the other existed but they had a common prayer to as to what kind of partner they want to have for life. Of course, it was also made possible with the help of some very supportive, well-meaning friends who knew of their hearts’ desires.
“Even before we met, we separately prayed for a God-fearing life partner. Both of us hadn’t had any boyfriend-girlfriend relationship for years (I was single for more than 3 years then), after a few failed relationships that didn’t seek to put God first. We separately desired to wait for God’s will and His perfect time.” – Andoy
“We were introduced by a common friend (my friend Kat who is Andoy’s officemate) who thought that it might be a good idea to set us up since we were both waiting for a Christian partner. Our first meeting was a group hike in Anilao, Batangas in April 2015 with 3 of my friends (including Kat) and 2 of Andoy’s cousins. (I really appreciate the effort of my friends to go hiking with us since they are not really the hiker-type of people!)” – Niza
The road leading to their lovely rustic vintage beach wedding was so real, it’s romantic. What seems to have sealed the deal for these two isn’t only their shared interest but their shared values when it comes to dealing with life.
“Admittedly, it was not “love at first sight” during our first meeting. But since then, we regularly dated and grew to know each other and the interests we both shared (we both loved the outdoors – since Niza grew up in LB and I grew up in Baguio) despite our professional differences (I am in the IT-Dev Ops industry while Niza is a practicing lawyer). In time, we both grew to know how we both seriously desired to seek God’s will. Our friendship grew into treasured love. With our family’s full support and seeking God’s mind, I proposed to Niza on April 23, 2016 in the waters of a beach in Bauan, Batangas.”- Andoy
Once engaged, the first few questions couples ask themselves are ‘when do we set the date?’ and ‘where do we hold our ceremony?’. There are different reasons why couples choose to have either a long engagement or a short one. Niza shared why a short one works for them.
“I was not comfortable with the idea of a long engagement and since I had some experience in helping out in weddings, (and because we really just were sure of committing to each other for the rest of our lives) we decided to get married within that same year.”
Normally, it’s the bride who dreams of a beach wedding. While Niza had something else in mind, sometimes things just won’t work out as you wanted it, but serendipitous events happen that makes things just turn out for the best.
“The beach wedding idea was more of Andoy’s idea because hailing from Baguio, the sight of the sea was a treat to him. I was more inclined to the idea of a garden wedding (because I wanted a morning wedding with breakfast food served for reception) but since we were not able to find a venue in Tagaytay that suited our preferences, we were left with the beach wedding option. We found our wedding venue by accident (we were checking out a resort nearby) and we were sure that we found the perfect venue once we saw the small beach resort. Our venue was a perfect combination of the simplicity of the sea and the greeneries of the surrounding mountains. We got married on September 30, 2016.” – Niza
Now, not getting a professional wedding planner is a pretty risky thing to do, specially for a destination beach wedding. But looking through the photos by Vital Image Photo that captured the lovely details, and based on Niza’s feedback, I’d say kudos to the couple and their friends who helped put this beautiful rustic vintage beach wedding together.
“Andoy and I decided from the start that we did not want to spend too much for our wedding, so we decided to have a (semi) DIY wedding. And since I was kind of up for it, we decided that we won’t be hiring a wedding planner. My 2 sisters (who were my matrons-of-honor) were of great help to me as wedding planners and also as on-the-day coordinators together with a churchmate friend of mine, Malen (who is not a professional coordinator, by the way). The stress of the big day was really eased with the help of Malen, my sisters, and several friends of mine from college who became part of Malen’s on-the-day coordination team. Our emcees, Andoy’s friends, Emman and Gretta, also were great in carrying out the program. Finally, we were also surprised by Vital Image Photo with an SDE video. It was really heart-warming that our wedding day was filled with the help and love from our friends and family.”
With their experience, Niza & Andoy have the following tips for couples as they try to manage their expenses as they plan for their wedding:
1) Just be aware of your non-negotiables and your limitations.
2) If you can do some of the tasks yourselves or you know that some of your friends or relatives wouldn’t mind helping out, then don’t be afraid to ask for help.
“Most of our suppliers were either recommended by friends and family or are friends and family, e.g. Jonathan of Vital Image Photo is my sister’s friend from highschool, our cake supplier is Andoy’s cousin all the way from Baguio, our caricature for our photobooth souvenir pictures was made by another cousin of Andoy, our musicians, singers, emcees and coordinators are our friends and relatives, our flowers for prettying up the venue were bought from Baguio and set up by our family and friends.”
3) Ask your suppliers for referrals so that coordination among all your suppliers would be easier.
These are very useful tips, don’t you think? The thought of preparing for one’s wedding may seem daunting. But cutting tasks & considerations into these bite sized pieces help make things more manageable. Talking about their tips for soon-to-weds Niza shares a point that hopefully encourages couples hesitating about taking the plunge to seal their love with this vow of commitment.
“Getting married these days could really get expensive but it doesn’t have to be. A wedding day is a celebration of love, and it’s not supposed to be about the brand or the price tag.”