Why We Decided to Elope in Italy

Hey y’all! I’ve been keeping a secret for quite some time and it feels so good to finally get it off my chest!

Brian and I eloped!

We’ve been planning to do it for a few years now, but we had some goals we wanted to hit before; namely getting the house built. Houses are expensive. Weddings are expensive. Vacations are expensive. And we hadn’t been on a true vacation since we started building the house, two years ago.

So instead of having a wedding, we decided to go on vacation and elope. It was probably one of the best decisions we’ve ever made! I’ll explain how we came to this decision and why it fit our lives so perfectly.

We planned a three-week trip of a lifetime to Italy and Santorini, Greece. Don’t you worry–I have so much info about these stunning places, I am writing blog posts galore! Everything from what it’s like driving in Italy (definitely an experience!), to where to go in Santorini, to our favorite restaurants in Florence. Seriously, y’all, I have SO MUCH to tell you! BUT FIRST, I want to share our elopement with y’all because that’s been the most requested.

We went to the courthouse right before we left to make it legally official. We brought only two witnesses and Brian’s daughter. It was so much fun! We pulled her out of school early and took her to buy a dress. She had no idea what was going on until we were on our way to the courthouse.

This December, Brian and I will have been together for 6 years. I was previously married and divorced and when I met B I wasn’t really interested in getting married again, ever. It took about 4 years, I can’t remember a reason for the change of mind, and one day I looked at him and thought I really could marry this man. To me, marriage had been scary: It’s a legally binding contract that is pretty easy and cheap to get in to…. and extremely difficult and expensive to end. You could say I had PTSD from my first marriage.

But Brian is my person. He is the only one who knows me better than I know myself. He is the most compassionate and supportive partner I could ever imagine. I didn’t know love was supposed to feel like this. Like… coming home. I’ll spare you the more mushy descriptions, but suffice to say, I thank God every day that our paths crossed.

We only told a few people about eloping: our two witnesses and a friend or two. After the courthouse, we told our parents. I tell you, when your mom is one of your best friends, it is SO HARD keeping such a secret from her! Both moms and dads were totally ok with the surprise, though! I think my parents were excited they didn’t have to help pay for another wedding….HA!

We didn’t tell anyone else. We wanted to have a little ceremony and vow exchange on our trip in Italy. Plus, I had a gorgeous dress from Vici I was itching to wear for proper pictures.

In the end, it wasn’t about a wedding or friends and family, It wasn’t about a big day being the center of attention, coordinating bridesmaids and dinner menus, showers and bachelor parties. It was about Brian and me. It was about the commitment we made to each other, and that we reaffirm every single day. It’s about choosing your one person and promising them your heart for the rest of your lives.

While a wedding is perfect for some people, it just wasn’t right for us. We spent three blissful weeks in Europe, adventuring and eating all the pasta/drinking all the wine and I wouldn’t change it for the world! I still feel butterflies when I look over and see his ring. Brian James, I love you and I’m so excited to spend the rest of my life choosing you, every single day.

Thanks for reading, friends.

Jenna Danielle