Bridal Bliss: Manuela and Jhonny's Connecticut Wedding Photos

Jhonny was Manuela’s childhood crush at church but they wound up being just friends. They stayed close throughout their high school and college years and when she relocated back to the area for work in 2011, they finally got their chance at love.

Charli Penn Jun, 11, 2014

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When Manuela and Jhonny were dating long distance, he came to visit her on the weekends. When it was time for him to go, the thought of how much she’d miss him made it hard for her to breathe. That’s when she knew she’d met the one. Let’s relive their wedding day!

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“I saw my dress in a magazine and immediately knew it was my dress,” Manuela admits. “I tried on over two-dozen dresses within a month, leaving that dress for last, and I loved it. After I got the confirmation from my matron of honor and my parents, who were with me dress shopping, it sealed the deal.”

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“I loved my dress, my hair, and makeup which gave me the confidence I needed for that day,” says Manuela.

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“My veil was my something borrowed from one of my bridesmaid’s,” says Manuela. “The jewelry I wore on our wedding day was given to me right before our wedding from Jhonny as our two-year dating anniversary gift.”

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Manuela chose pretty peep-toes to complement her gown on her special day.

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“He is kind, tender, gentle, has vision for his life and very humble,” says Manuela. “He challenges me and encourages me in my walk with Christ. He has a great sense of humor, believes in me, makes me want to be a better woman, and lets me take a lot of pictures! Most importantly, he loves God more than anything, even me.”

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“I spent several hours on Pinterest looking for the perfect hair style,” Manuela admits. “When I saw it, I immediately knew.”

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Manuela and Jhonny are so in love, they didn’t miss a chance to add elements of romance to every aspect of their wedding day.

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“I love the way she connected with my mother,” says Jhonny. “My mother had always wanted a daughter, and to see the two of them in conversation, it really confirmed it for me.”

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Manuela’s bridesmaids wore gowns by Morilee. “I wanted a dress that flatters all body types and heights, so I went with a chiffon, one-shouldered floor length gown.”

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“He accepts me for who I am 110-percent,” says the gushing bride. “I can see all of God’s love for me through his eyes.”

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“Jhonny picked his own attire and went with a grey Vera Wang tuxedo from Men’s Warehouse over a white shirt, vest and tie,” Manuela explains. "His groomsmen wore black tuxedos which made him standout. He looked so handsome and wore the heck out of that suit.”

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“I know spending the rest of my life with my best friend is a decision I will never regret,” says Manuela.

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“It would be an understatement to say we had a large bridal party,” Manuela teases. Agreed!

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“She is God fearing, assertive, intelligent and absolutely a go-getter,” says the happy groom. “She is a wonderful woman, daughter, sister and an amazing friend to many, including myself, as she is my best friend.” 

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“My father walked me down the aisle,” says Manuela. “I’m forever a daddy’s girl.” Her song choice for the big walk? “From This Moment” by Shania Twain.

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Sentimental messages lined the aisles at the happy couple's wedding ceremony.

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“Our ceremony was performed by the pastor of the church we grew up in and that our parents still attend,” says Manuela. “He did a great job incorporating our Haitian culture into the ceremony.”

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“I felt as if it was just the two of us in that church despite all the eyes on us,” says Jhonny. “I’m not sure I heard the pastor talking at all.” Aww!

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Manuela’s big moment at that altar was truly unforgettable. “It was surreal,” she says. “I kept thinking, this is not the same guy that was my high school crush, how did I get so blessed?”

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“We wrote our own vows, straight from the heart,” says Manuela. “It was a perfect opportunity to publicly declare our love for each other. I can see God’s love for me through his eyes, and wanted our guests to get a taste of that love. Jhonny had said for months that it was all in his head and never wrote them down. He ended up scrapping what he thought to write and wrote from the heart when he woke up the morning of the wedding and it was so beautiful.”

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“First and foremost, she makes me want to be a better Christian and as a result a better man,” says Jhonny. “She shares my values and my family loves her as much as I do. Her cooking doesn’t hurt either, and in fact, it may have sealed the deal! (Smiles!)”

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“We selected a venue a few miles down the same street from the church,” says Manuela. “The reception included a cocktail hour and band in a foyer outside the reception hall. The venue had a large round glass table in the foyer with a beautiful floral centerpiece surrounded by our pictures and DIY photo books that we put together over time while we were dating. It was followed by a formal seated dinner and lots of dancing. We didn’t leave much time between the ceremony and reception because we had out of town guests.”

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“We started off with a slow dance to ‘Avew’ by Daan Junior - one of our favorite kompa artists,” says Manuela. “It is in French (Avew translation ‘With You’) and it was absolutely beautiful. We then transitioned to ‘Crazy In Love’ by Beyoncé and dominated the dance floor!”

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Party over here! What a fun moment captured on film. We love it.

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Framed moments from their beautiful courtship helped to add an air of romance at the couple's reception.

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“After a cake tasting at Di’Mare’s bakery in Stamford, CT with my father and youngest sister it was unanimous that the Bailey’s liquor cake was the way to go,” says Manuela. “We looked at several pictures, then went with a five layered cake with a simple heart décor accented by champagne and red roses and beaded edges. We ordered vanilla and chocolate cupcakes through Di’Mare’s for the children.”

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The sweets table looked so delectable that we wish we would have been there to grab a bag of goodies too.

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“Being a bride was amazing though full of anxiety,” Manuela admits. “I was overwhelmed with happiness to share this moment with friends and family. Needless to say I was more than ready to start my life with the love of my life.”

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“We love taking pictures so we made our theme ‘Picture Perfect,’" says Manuela. “We wanted our guests to see our love from the moment we started dating and these pictures told our story.”

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Even the couple's smallest guests came to their wedding ready to party. Aww!

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If you enjoyed sharing in Manuela and Jhonny's wedding bliss as much as we did, don't forget to leave the happy couple a little comment love below!

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# Weddings

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# Weddings