Surf’s Up! It’s a Covid-19 Elopement in the Middle of the Ocean

COVID-19 Surf Elopement

Today we’re catching waves and catching feelings! How can you not when you see the sweetest Covid-19 elopement between two surf lovers, Nicole + Daniel?! Like so many others, N + D were forced to cancel their big day at the last minute due to the current global pandemic. Though they were crushed, they knew that they still wanted to start the next chapter of their lives together. They grabbed their boards, headed to the beaches of St. Augustine, Florida and said their vows. N shares:

In the midst of all the unknown we were still so sure of one thing, and that was we were so ready to become husband and wife. Daniel and I love surfing and it’s one of our favorite things to do together as a couple. We both feel free and calm and alive when we’re in the ocean. So we decided that instead of dwelling in the middle of a rock and a hard place that we would say our vows in the same place that has brought us joy so many times before. We agreed that we could use that day to be a light for others and to leave a legacy for our children and grandchildren one day. So we drove to the courthouse before it closed, got our marriage license, and prepared our hearts to get married in the ocean.

The photos that Stefanie Keeler Photography captured are pure magic! Let’s go!

Deciding on a Covid-19 Elopement

COVID-19 Surf Elopement

It’s a question that so many couples have faced already and so many more are currently struggling with. Forget lemons into lemonade- what do you do when life hands you a pandemic?? N shared more with us about the difficulty of their decision:

When we were told that we had to reschedule our wedding two weeks before the big day due to Covid, we were heart broken that we wouldn’t have the day that we had been dreaming of. One by one, all of our plans started falling through the cracks – my bridal shower being postponed, guests deciding not to come to the wedding, the entire wedding day being forced to reschedule, Daniel’s parents not being able to travel, Florida beaches closing, and the list of roller coaster of emotions. I remember we took a walk one night while trying to figure out what to do. I think we both felt defeated because we knew that if we eloped we wouldn’t get the same anticipation as we would on our big wedding day. But we also had no idea when we would even get to have our wedding celebration.

COVID-19 Surf Elopement

I wore my white bathing suit, his parents had a cake delivered to us from Kentucky, all of our guests joined in prayer at the exact time they would’ve seen us walking down the aisle. Daniel’s best man even called us on the way to the beach to give us his best man’s speech. We honestly had about 7 days to figure out how to still get married, but it was from the help of all the people who love us that made our day so special in the smallest ways.

COVID-19 Surf Elopement

COVID-19 Surf Elopement

Our Favorite Memory From The Wedding

I love how simple our wedding day was. There was no timeline or schedule; no rushing to get ready; no entertaining our guests more than celebrating each other. It was a day that was simply about the two of us becoming one and fixing our eyes on what marriage truly meant to us. We’re big on community and family, and although we didn’t have anyone else around except our photographer, videographer, and officiant there was still so much joy in our day, and Stefanie captured it so authentically and raw.

COVID-19 Surf Elopement

COVID-19 Surf Elopement

Maybe you didn’t realize that bridal bathing suits are a thing? If not, we’re totally making it a thing!

COVID-19 Surf Elopement

COVID-19 Surf Elopement

Officially Wed!

COVID-19 Surf Elopement

COVID-19 Surf Elopement

N + D finished their Covid-19 elopement day with the sweetest beach picnic of Publix cake and cold champagne! Adorable!

COVID-19 Surf Elopement

We love seeing faces of PURE JOY. Are you struggling to find peace with your own Covid-19 change of plans? Read more real stories of How These Couples Said “I Do” During the Pandemic.

Surfing Through Life

COVID-19 Surf Elopement

COVID-19 Surf Elopement

Our Advice To Those Planning Now

If you’re planning a wedding and it’s being affected by this pandemic you have a right to be heartbroken, angry, and sad. But in the midst of adversity, seek joy. Joy that your wedding day will still happen; Joy that you still get to marry your best friend. I’ve realized that because we are all broken people living in a broken world, we are bound to still have brokenness even on one of the biggest day of our lives - it’s our choice to either find sorrow in that, or joy. And I choose joy. Another small piece of advice is if your wedding is being rescheduled, still get married on your day. Make it your own. Ask yourself what is unique to your relationship and go get married doing it!

COVID-19 Surf Elopement

On this side of marriage we would do it all over again. The heartache, the tears, the missed expectation of what a wedding day “should” be like. It forced us to stop and be thankful for all that God had given us in each other. And those moments are the greatest wedding gift we could ask for.

Congratulations Nicole + Daniel! You guys are beyond inspiring. We know your sense of adventure and love for each other will take you far in life!!

photography: Stefanie Keeler Photography // cake: Publix

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