A few words from the bride, who better to tell the wedding day story.
“After almost 11 years together, we decided that we werenâ€™t keen on the spotlight or fuss of a big wedding. We had always talked about jet setting away somewhere with close family and friends to have a really relaxed, stress-free wedding day. We decided on Fiji as we loved the idea of the Fijian way of life; the relaxed atmosphere, friendly locals and of course the beautiful beaches. It was a place we had talked about visiting one day and what better reason to visit than our very own wedding. Looking back now, we wouldnâ€™t change a thing. Fiji was everything we hoped for and so much more. We decided to get married at Mana Island as we very much liked the idea of having a quiet, secluded area in which to be married as opposed to the touristy mainland areas of Fiji where random people would be looking on in the distance. The island itself was absolutely magical (we now understand why it is called Magical Mana Island!) and allowed our guests to all be together in the same resort, which was heaps of fun and created such hype in the lead up to the wedding.
Our favourite memories of the wedding are so widespread and definitely canâ€™t be narrowed down to one specific moment. The entire time we spent in Fiji holds a special place in our hearts as the most blessed days we have spent together, both as a couple and with our family and friends. Strolling around the streets of Denarau, instantly adapting to Fiji time, lazy days inside during the rain, lazy days on the beach, Levi falling asleep whilst mid vow writing, beautiful sunsets, massages, delicious cocktails, our wedding eve photo shoot, crab races, native dancing, eating coconuts, snorkelling and capsizing a kayak are just a few of the fun times we shared.
Our wedding day itself brings so many beautiful memories, but a few that we hold dearly are: loving messages we both received on the morning of the wedding, Jess seeing her parents for the first time, Levi seeing Jess â€˜pop out from the bushesâ€™ before walking along the beach to â€˜Speechlessâ€™ â€“ a song which was chosen as the isle song from the very first time Jess heard it many years ago, seeing the happiness on the faces of our family and friends, sharing our personally written vows, Jess accidently putting Leviâ€™s ring on the wrong finger, Levi accidently knocking over the sand ceremony, signing the registry which made everything so much more real, dancing, hooning around in the golf buggy, Corey & Jessâ€™ big stack, the heart-felt speeches, laughter that constantly filled the room, crazy dancing, singing, jager-bombs for all and of course the excitement of surprise fireworks to top off the memorable and magical day that we officially became Mr & Mrs Collins.”
Oh my goodness – I Â saw the best man – Corey piggy backing Jess whilst walking along the poles but turned the other way just for a second, when I looked back I found they Â had come tumbling down. Corey ended up with aÂ truly busted ankle, ripped pants from crutch to ankle and a lot of pain. Thank goodness for pain killers and a pair of shorts for later on. But lucky for Jess she was alright. It did mean that with needing to get assistance for the Cory the bridal party shoot was cut short, but we still managed to have fun before heading in to the reception.
I cannot thank Jess and Levi enough for booking me to be their photographer and Jaiman to do the filming (stay tuned for the film). Â Your family, friends, Mana Island and those friendly friendly Fijians – just beautiful. I look forward to going back someday for a holiday. A beautiful part of the world for sure.
(I also have to say a big thank you to Sam Luddeman for helping me. I arrived in Fiji with almost no voice at all. Sam had some magic tablets that helped me at least have some voice to do some directing, it wasn’t a lot but it was something and I am very grateful for the Sam. Thank you)
For those that may have missed it, take a look at the photo session from the Wedding Eve. Follow to this linkÂ http://www.lizarcus.com/wedding/on-the-eve-of-jess-and-levis-wedding-mana-island-fiji-2
And here is a little highlight film made by Jaiman