December 23rd 2011 is a day the whole Dudney family will cherish in our memories forever. Our daughter, Jaime, married her new husband, Whit Gilbert, in a very beautiful wedding in Nashville.
The fun started with Jaime’s Bridal Shower. Matthew cooked dinner for all of us women at the shower that Cathy Bucek, a friend who helped us coordinate the wedding, and Christy gave for her.
Cathy and Matthew enjoying the wonderful food.
Me with the fabulous Cathy Bueck.
The wedding was precious and intimate – with only about 85 guests. The wedding took place at a marvelous historic church called Owen Chapel, a 152 year old church that was built before the Civil War. It was a holy, sacred wedding ceremony. Jaime’s gorgeous dress was made by Cheryl Johnson of C. Johnson Custom Clothing. Cheryl makes gowns and costumes for many of the stars living in Nashville, and the dress was just perfect for her.
Ken walking Jaime down the aisle to marry Whit.
I was so happy to be able to contribute to the décor in the church. I did all of the flowers and built an eight foot tall cross for the wall behind the pulpit that I made out of limbs from our yard. Jaime plans to use it at the Fontanel on their Gospel Sunday Brunch that they have once a month.
Whit has two children, Emma Grace, who is nine and Elizabeth, who is five. The girls walked Whit down the aisle, which was a beautiful symbol of them giving their Daddy, in marriage, to Jaime. One of our favorite parts of the ceremony was after Jaime and Whit took their vows to each other and they asked the girls to step up to the altar. First, Jaime made beautiful promises and vows to the girls and placed a ring on each of their fingers that matched her ruby and diamond engagement ring that Whit had made for her. The girls were just beaming and so thrilled. When Jaime finished making her commitments and promises to the girls, Whit turned around and spoke with them. It was a very emotional, beautiful time. Ken said it was the only time during the wedding when he had to wipe away tears.
Whit and his girls, Ken and his girl.
Josh Wooten, a dear friend of Whit and Jaime’s throughout high school and college, married them. How precious is it that in his life, God’s journey for him was to become a minister and then marry two of his childhood friends? Jaime’s only request for music was for her sister-in-law, Christy Sutherland, to sing a song she wrote called “God Is In This Place,” and it was so special and beautiful. It meant a lot to me that that’s what Jaime and Whit wanted. Mike Farris, a great musician Jaime and Whit are friends and fans of, sang a stunning rendition of the Lord’s Prayer a capella.
After the wedding, we had cakes and desserts at a reception at our home. Hannah, our daughter in law, made the most breathtaking cake I’ve ever seen. All the sides were covered in Freedom Roses and there was lacework along the bottoms of each layer. It was just exquisite and tasted divine.
The exquisite cake, made by Hannah.
Ken played John Lennon and Paul McCartney’s composition "In My Life,” on the piano as Whit and Jaime danced their first dance as Mr. and Mrs. Gilbert.
Ken and Jaime and Whit, Elizabeth and Emma Grace all dancing during the Father-Daughter dance.
Me with dear friend Dino Pastin, who was my keyboard and saxophone player for many years up until I retired, played piano at the wedding and reception.
We had such a lovely time and are so happy for Jaime and Whit. Love and marriage are such blessings. We are so excited for their future! Welcome to the family, Whit, Emma Grace and Elizabeth!