Funny story—we matched on Tinder while attending TCNJ! I was Matt’s first and only swipe (pretty efficient) and his opening line was, “I see we are both sophomores and we both like coffee; do you want to meet up for coffee?” One week after our coffee date at the school library, I asked Matt to go to New Hope with me on a school trip. An old man by a bridge said we made a really cute couple and took our picture. Matt said, “We should post it on Facebook!” to which I replied, “Well then people will think we are dating…” He laughed and said nervously, “We could try that….” We have been inseparable ever since!
Will You Marry Me?
After five years of dating and getting our own apartment and kitten together in Wayne, I was really looking forward to getting engaged. As time went on, I constantly asked Matt when he would buy a ring, what his plan was. Right before the big day, Matt convinced me that he did not have time to go shopping and that it just wasn’t going to happen that summer. He even let my cry on the couch after hearing that it wasn’t in the cards. Well, on August 17, 2019, I was disappointed since it was a gorgeous day at the beach house, the whole family was there together and there was no proposal in sight. During the picture-perfect sunset on the bay, I said sarcastically, “Today would’ve been a perfect day to propose!” Within seconds, Matt got down on one knee, I cried and nodded yes, and everyone celebrated the big moment that night at the beach house!
Details of Your Day
We did not have a set theme (does food count as a theme?) for our reception at Valley Regency in Clifton, but our vibe was elegant with endless food and love all around! Our colors were purple and silver with touches of pink. We also had our fluffy black cat, Sashimi, with us in spirit as our cake topper. We love a good pun, so our favors were homemade chocolate-dipped mint cookies that said, “April & Matt are mint to be!” We also had a photo booth that gave precious memories and guests got frames to take home and display! Another special detail was our live wedding painter—guests got to watch as the portrait of our first dance came to life!
Why Did You Choose Valley Regency?
Our favorite hobby is eating and we have a large Italian family, so food was our number one priority! Valley Regency exceeded our high expectations in every aspect—cocktail hour was an endless display of foodie dreams (the prosciutto tower was a huge hit), and the chef customizes each entrée to whatever you can think of! We also always felt like family and appreciated that Valley does one wedding at a time. The bridal suite is also gigantic so that was a big plus!
Nailing our first dance (“From the Ground Up” by Dan and Shay) and surprising our guests with actually looking great on the dance floor! Matt and I can’t dance to save our lives, so we were incredibly nervous for our first dance. We took dance lessons at Fred Astaire, and after many days practicing in our driveway, it felt amazing to be confident and enjoy that moment!
Honestly, photography was so important to us and we couldn’t live without having Daniel Nydick capturing every moment! We hugged in the bridal suite, gave each other a fist-bump and said “Let’s rock this day.” Daniel was our #1 hype-man, took photos everywhere and anywhere, and guests couldn’t believe how enthusiastic and involved he was. We are beyond thrilled with our photos and look at all 1,300+ of them every day on our digital frame!
Advice for Others
Along with the classic advice of don’t sweat the small stuff and things will go wrong, a unique piece of advice is to make a Google doc for your family and bridal party so everyone is on the same page! We added phone numbers, important addresses (hotel, venue, parent’s houses), day-of schedule, bridal party pairings and order down the aisle, etc. Everyone knew exactly when and where they had to be and who they were standing with, which made it all flow smoothly!
Our initial plan of Italy and Greece went out the window due to Covid, which ended up being a blessing allowing us to relax and unwind for 10 nights in Montego Bay, Jamaica! We stayed at the Hyatt Zilara (another foodie paradise) and enjoyed so much gourmet food and activities. Some highlights of our trip were eating at the resort Chef Table, climbing the Dunn’s River falls, and swimming at the Luminous Lagoon (light up microorganisms that make it look like the water is glowing around you at night). We also tried to learn how to windsurf, which always makes us laugh remembering how many times we fell in the water!
Venue | The Valley Regency, Clifton
Photographer | Daniel Nydick Photography
Officiant | Matt’s aunt Chrissy!
Planner | Me, myself and I
Gown | Essence of Australia from I Do I Do in Morristown
Shoes | JC Penney
Accessories | PJ sets from Boscovs. Bride PJs customized by Lindsey Hardifer @1127series
Hair & Makeup | Verve on Location
Bridesmaid Dresses | Emma dress in Tahiti from Azazie
Groom’s & Groomsmen Attire | Jos A Bank
Flowers | Blooming Brides
Invitations | Minted
Dance Lessons | Fred Astaire in Cedar Grove
Music | Love of Music Entertainment
Live Painter | @tildeathdous.art
Bridal Shower | The Graycliff, Moonachie
Honeymoon | Hyatt Zilara at Montego Bay, Jamaica