Renee Back


Our Story

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Our Wedding Day!

If you’ve been reading these posts since the beginning of our love story (if not and you want to, click here), this is finally a post about our wedding day! There were other things that came between our last post and this post but I didn’t want to bore you with all the tiny little details… Only two main things were missed. Kevin came with me to my family reunion and we had our bridal shower.

At this point in our story, it’s only been eight months since the first blog post. Since I first met him again as an adult. A LOT can happen in eight months! If you were to tell me at this point the year before that I would be getting married on October 10, 2009, I would have told you that you were crazy! And if you would have said it would be to Kevin Back (my childhood friend’s little brother), I would have thought you were off your rocker. But here I was, marrying the love of my life!

getting ready with mom before our wedding

Surrounded by Family and Friends on Our Wedding Day

The day started with getting ready, surrounding my favorite ladies in the whole world. One did my hair, another did my makeup, both of which I LOVED. One was painting the nails of one of the flower girls. And others were getting ready along side me, all at my aunt’s house, with finishing touches from both my mom and my sister-in-law, who was my matron of honor. After I was completely ready, it was time for the first look. I had dreamt of this moment from our first date. What would it be like to see my husband on my wedding day for the first time?

first look before our wedding

It was perfect! Seeing the smile on his face, any nerves I may have had for the day were now gone. I didn’t have any nerves that I was marrying the wrong person, mind you. I knew without a doubt that I would be happy spending the rest of my life with this man. Just the nerves that all eyes were going to be on me, that I would do something dumb and trip over my dress, or say something crazy during my vows. But just looking at this man, it was worth making a fool of myself if that happened. Because at the end of the day, I was going home with him. And I got to keep him. And that’s all that truly mattered to me.

We did ALL of our wedding photos before the wedding, which I highly recommend. I’m not one to usually wear makeup. But I am one to cry. And those two things don’t usually go well together. This way, I had all my photos done before the crying began.

kevin with my brother

Beginning of Photos

We started with photos of the guys while the girls were all still getting ready. It was so nice to have my brother in the wedding. Not just because I love him, but because he was friends with Kevin since before they could walk. They are so much alike, it’s scary sometimes. But I love that. Because with either one of them around, you are guaranteed to smile. But with both, it won’t be long until you’re laughing out loud.

Speaking of laughing out loud, the next few photos are some of my favorite, not just from my wedding day, but of all time. It shows how my family truly is. We LOVE to laugh and find humor in all the craziness life brings you. It was cold and windy on that October day and my veil would not behave. But we just laughed it off and made a memory in the meantime. Grandma was the reason I even met Kevin, and for that, I will be eternally grateful. I’m so glad she was still in good health to be able to not just be at the wedding but to truly enjoy it.

three generations. Me with my mom and grandma.

Our Wedding Day Helped Me Reflect on My Parents’ Example

Absolutely love my parents. I couldn’t have asked to have been raised by two better people. They each taught me different things that made me who I am today. They taught me to love. To laugh, to give, to put others ahead of myself, to love God with my whole heart, to be content with what I have, to look for the good in others, and to care more about what I was on the inside than what I looked like on the outside. And they taught me what a marriage should look like. In all my years growing up, I never once heard them argue. Not because they agreed on everything, but they wanted to set a good example for us kids.

It’s eleven years later now, and I’m still trying to live up to that example. But the one that gave our wedding talk made a very profound point. He said “Look at your dad. Now look at Kevin. Don’t expect Kevin to be just like your dad. He’s had 30 years of experience in marriage to get him to where he is today.” So glad for that advice at the beginning of our married life. Because I always have and always will look up to my father. But now another man was going to be the head of my family. And I needed to give him time.

me with mom and dad
my entire family before our wedding

Family is something you should never take for granted. And I, for one, am grateful for all of these amazing people. I don’t get to see them as often as I would like. And one of them I’ve lost. But they are in my heart every day. Now it was time for us to start our journey, just the two of us.

Our Wedding Portraits in the Same Place He Proposed

walking the bridge where he proposed before our wedding

For our wedding photos, this was the place I’d always dreamt of. That’s why Kevin brought me here to propose (that blog is here.) Even though it was cold, the fall colors did not disappoint. It was absolutely beautiful!

laughing with you

He sure does know how to make me laugh, but he has his very sweet moments too!

looking ahead on our wedding day
kissing on our wedding day

As you’ve already figured out from previous blogposts, I was pretty smitten with him. Still am. When after over a decade, you can look at your marriage mate and think to yourself “I still have absolutely no idea how I ended up with someone so amazing” or “Man, he is really cute!” well, you have done something right!

I loved looking in his eyes on our wedding day.
Kevin kisses my forehead on our wedding day.

Every Girl’s Dream

My wish is for every girl to feel this way. Sure, life isn’t a fairy tale and we all have disagreements from time to time. But to be able to spend your life with someone who makes you happy, that is a privilege. I didn’t have blinders on and think our life would be “perfect” but I knew we would be happy, as long as we both applied the Bible principles that were so important to us.

walking just the two of us on our wedding day
bride and groom on our wedding day

When we were done with our photos at the reservoir, Kevin gave me his coat because he knew how cold I was. What a gentleman!

He gave me his coat because I was cold

The Rest of Our Formal Portraits

Then we headed to the Kingdom Hall for the rest of the photos. The girls were now ready, as was the rest of Kevin’s family. His momma is so proud of him! You can see it on her face. And I am extremely grateful to her for raising this man to be so kind and caring.

kevin and his mom on our wedding day

Grateful to his father for passing on his sense of humor, his work ethic and his knowledge of how to take care of a home.

Kevin's family on our wedding day

Our Bridal Party

We had two flower girls, my cousin and his niece. Though I think my niece liked him more than me. But I don’t blame her. He’s pretty likable. And fun. Most kids are drawn to him pretty instantly. But I had the pretty flowers, so I could convince her to take a photo with me. Hard to believe both of these girls are teenagers now!

Kevin and I with our flower girls on our wedding day

Thankful for our group of close friends who could be in our wedding party! Because of the expense of traveling from Kentucky, we didn’t have as many guys as Kevin wanted. But it worked! And my friend who did the flowers, didn’t she do an AMAZING job?! These were the prettiest flowers I had ever seen! Definitely a dream come true.

bridal party on our wedding day

And the day wouldn’t have been complete without my aunt and uncle. Kevin stayed with them almost every time he came up. He became like a son to them. And my aunt helped me plan all the little details of the wedding. She was the best wedding planner ever!

our families on our wedding day

After the formal portraits, it was time for dinner. Then the wedding. So glad we did it this way. This gave us a chance to spend much of the day with our family before all of the guests arrived.

Our Wedding Ceremony

our wedding ceremony

Our wedding talk was my absolute favorite I have ever heard. My very close friend, Rick, knew me so well and he gave such good advice. The talk is based on the Bible but he also added in his humor. He started off with “Many of you may not know, this isn’t the first wedding for either of them. When Renee was eight and Kevin was six, they pretended to be married. She was given away by her brother, and his sister officiated. But as that was neither legal nor Scriptural, we are here today to make it both.” Hahaha. You should’ve seen everyone’s faces when he said it wasn’t our first wedding!

Also, when he talked about the role of the wife… The Bible says she should be in subjection. Not in a demeaning way. But to be respectful and let him take the lead. He said “Now I know you. We ALL know you. YOU know you….” If any of you don’t know me, I’m opinionated. Very opinionated. And I like things done a certain way. And I used to be a lot more bossy than I am now. He knew this was going to be a challenge for me. Thankfully Kevin has been patient with me during this process and I am much better than I was.

Plenty of Tears

But there were also tears. He said “Imagine when God brought Eve to Adam, just like Renee’s dad brought her to you today. And Adam said ‘at last, bone of my bone and flesh of my flesh’.” Just picturing that brought tears to our eyes. He also told Kevin to look at the audience. He said “those aren’t all tears of joy. We are also sad because you are taking Renee away from us. So all the love that she felt from those in this room today, you have to make up for all of it.”

No pressure, right?! But that was definitely an emotionally hard thing for me to go through. And then, like mentioned above, he had me look at my dad and then Kevin. And then back at my dad. That was also hard. I loved this man very much and it was hard to look at him, knowing I would no longer see him every day.

saying the vows at our wedding

The Rings

Then it was time for the vows. The ones I would live by every day for as long as we both shall live together on this earth. I haven’t done so perfectly, but I try. He deserves it. We exchanged rings. I’m not a jewelry person and I like getting my hands dirty. So both of us keep our rings in a safe place. So you might not see them on our hands every time you see us. But we keep them safe and wear them on special occasions. Or sometimes when we feel “extra” lovey. This second photo is when I was showing him I got it engraved with the words “Love You Back” as a play on our last name.

showing him the inscription on his wedding ring

At the reception, we had a table set up with a wedding photo of my parents and his parents, each on their wedding day, a photo of us at our first wedding as kids (also from the first blog) and then from earlier in the day (including us in the order we were in the photo as kids). We are grateful that both our parents set an example of what it’s like to be loyal to each other in good times and bad, through sickness and health, in laughter and in tears. Marriage is a commitment and we were ready!

pictures of our wedding and our parents weddings

The First Dances

We came in to the song “How Sweet It Is to Be Loved by You” and cut the cake right away. Then we did our first dance to “Come Away With Me” by Norah Jones. Then I danced with my dad to “I Loved Her First” by Heartland. Every wedding we ever attended, when I would dance with my dad, he would whisper in my ear “One day, this will be us at your wedding.” Oh yes, I’m crying as I write those words…

Well the day had come. And it was bittersweet. I was marrying the man of my dreams. But I was also leaving the other man I loved more than life itself. This would not be my last dance with him. But it was the end of an era. I was now going to live 650 miles away from him. The tears on my face said it all.

dancing with my father

We had all the other fathers and daughters join us on the dance floor after the first verse. I loved watching the joy on their faces. And not just little girls. Even grown women who were now married, dancing with their daddies once again. It was beautiful. Then it was time for Kevin to dance with his mom. Both of them wanted the song “I Could Not Ask For More” by Edwin McCain. Then again, after the first verse, other mothers and sons joined them on the dance floor.

Making Everyone Laugh at Our Wedding Reception

After that, we said our thank-yous. Kevin started off. And of course, he had everyone laughing. I wish I could remember exactly what he said, but it was something like “Renee is really great. At least she thinks she is.” He was nervous, but it made everyone, including me, laugh.

Saying our thank you speech at our wedding reception

After we said thank you to everyone, it was time to party! We had such a good time dancing. And we set up a photo booth where people could go in and be as silly as they wanted. When I got back from the honeymoon and saw the photos, oh boy! We were laughing so hard we were crying! So glad we set that up! My cousin Ethan (who was a senior this year, you can see his photos here), went in with as many people as he could. We got a kick out of how many photos we got of him. Glad he had a fun time at our wedding!

There are so many more photos and stories, we could go on all day. There were so many important people that aren’t in these photos, but that doesn’t mean they aren’t near and dear to our hearts. But you get the idea. Our wonderful cousins made a great video montage of our wedding if you want to see it on YouTube. It is private so you can only see it by clicking on the link. Enjoy!

Let us know if you want to continue this love story blog. If not, it has been fun sharing our story with all of you! Thank you for reading. And as always, remember to tell those you love how much they mean to you. It takes seconds to say but lasts a lifetime!

Love, Renee (and Kevin)


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