Real Weddings

Ashley and Austin at Doolan’s Shore Club Caterers

Ashley-Austin-DoolansHow did you meet? 8 years ago I transferred from community college in New Jersey to college in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. My husband to be, Austin, also moved to Florida from Connecticut for a new job opportunity. Since I moved down there, I definitely wanted to get in shape. I signed up at the LA Fitness closest to my new apartment. I met a couple of girlfriends who went to that gym and told me on the ride there that there was a really attractive guy there but he does not give any girls the time of day. I didn’t think anything of it and walked into the gym.

The moment I walked into the gym, I locked eyes with Austin. All I cared about was trying to get his attention. Now mind you, I have not worked out in years. I approached Austin and asked him if he could spot me on the squat machine. I wanted to impress him so he loaded up the weights on the bar bell. I knew I was not going to be able to walk later but if I could catch his eye it was going to be totally worth it. He spotted me and we got to talking and he asked me out on a date. One month later we moved in together in my apartment. The problem was I hated Florida but I was falling in love with Austin. So I gave Austin an ultimatum, either pack up all his stuff and drive back with me to New Jersey with me and live with my parents and start a new life. So what did he do? He got in the car and we never looked back. The rest is history.

Ashley-Austin-DoolansHow did you get engaged? When Austin and I started talking about engagement, the number one thing I DID NOT WANT was to be proposed to on a holiday. Austin works 6 days a week and I work 7 days a week. So it was going to be a little tricky for him to propose because if he took me out to dinner, I knew something was up. Austin and I live in New Jersey, my parents and sister live in Florida and Austin’s family lives in Connecticut. For the past couple years after my parents decided to move to Florida, it had been a little difficult to see them as much as we usually do. I decided to surprise Austin and tell him for Thanksgiving 2017 we would be going to visit my family. Austin made a big deal saying that he had a big surprise of his own and would be cooking me a home cooked meal and to have our own Thanksgiving together in our new apartment we just moved into. So I agreed and changed our plans. The night before Thanksgiving, I told Austin I am sleeping in because I never have a day to sleep in. The next morning it was Thanksgiving and I felt a tap and a heavy object on my body at 9am. I freaked out and started screaming and threw the pillow over my head. Austin ripped the blankets off me and in the bed was a french bulldog puppy with a red bow around it. I instantly started to cry! He said that isn’t all, look at her ribbon and the ring was around the puppies neck. I cried even more. He got down on one knee and asked me. I said “Yes” of course but I still can not believe he did it on a holiday!

Ashley-Austin-DoolansDetails of your day! For my wedding, my theme color combination I chose plum, purple, lavender, grey and accent of silver. The flowers for the bridesmaid’s bouquet was purple stock lavender roses and white spray roses with silver dusty miller. My bouquet had mini calla with purple stock, white anemones, white roses, silver brunei and dusty miller with french braid and crystal stud holder.

Ashley-Austin-DoolansThe wedding favors were, without a doubt, the hardest part. I wanted to be different and not have the traditional candy or wine. When the guests walked out, they had a choice of pork roll egg and cheese, hot pretzels or funnel cake. So I decided to make Hangover Kits. I made mini bags that said on the front “Love is this best medicine but this will help you too”. Inside the bag had mini packets of Advil, chap stick, gum, mint, hand sanitizer, and emergency vitamin packet to put into the water I attached to the bag. All the things you need for a hangover!

Ashley-Austin-DoolansWhy did you choose your venue? I chose Doolan’s Shore Club in Spring Lake because as soon as I walked in I felt very comfortable. All of our families live far away so the number one thing that the venue needed to have was to be connected to a hotel so all our family members can stay over. They offered 25 rooms automatically closed off for my wedding guests with a discount. We also wanted to make everything easy for the guests for the day of our wedding. We had rehearsal dinner at Doolan’s Shore Club and after the wedding we had brunch there as well. The wedding really was a weekend wedding and that is what I wanted.

Ashley-Austin-DoolansThis is the biggest day of my life and I wanted it to be a weekend that people will never forget. Another thing that made me choose the venue was the atrium where we got married. It was a gorgeous arch with mirrors. Another plus with Doolan’s is they really love what they do and help you will anything and everything!

Ashley-Austin-DoolansWhat was on your wedding menu? The food was unbelievable. The cocktail hour was amazing. There were ice sculptures and so much food I can’t even type it because it would take me all night. But every guest said the food was amazing! The menu for the wedding was a Mixed Field Greens salad with tomatoes, walnuts, Gorgonzola cheese with a balsamic dressing. Entrees were Herb Crusted Salmon with Citrus Butter over Spinach, Lemon Peppered Chicken and Shrimp or Surf and Turf.
The cake was made out of Butter Cream, Chocolate Fudge, and Vanilla Cake.

Ashley-Austin-DoolansAll about your gown! My gown was an Allure Gown- Style 9252 My dress was ivory with a dramatic beading all down the back and on the front. The fabric was satin. The best part of the dress was that there was so much detail I did not need a lot of jewelry because there was so much beautiful beading on the front and back. The veil had the intricate beading on the bottom as well. The train of the dress was long but they made a perfect bustle. I knew this gown was the one because when I walked out of the dressing room everyone started to cry and I felt like a real bride. They say you know it’s your dress and I definitely knew that dress was made for me.

Ashley-Austin-DoolansWhat was your favorite moment? There is no way I can pick one favorite moment at my wedding. Some of my favorite moments were that I had all of my family there and my husband’s family there. Austin and I have been together for 8 years and it has been a long bumpy road and to finally get married was the best day of my life. Another special moment was that we wrote our own vows. The whole crowd was crying including our rabbi. Honestly the whole night was perfect and I wouldn’t change one thing that day. I wish I could get married every year!

Ashley-Austin-DoolansOne detail you couldn’t live without? The main detail I could not live without was our first dance. Austin and I took 8 weeks of dance class at Arthur Murray Academy. We wanted to surprise everyone with a 2 minute choreographed slow dance and then a surprise hip hop dance! It was special to us because it was a hobby that we did together and practiced every single night. The best part was seeing everyone’s faces when Austin ripped off his jacket for the hip hop part! If you want to see it here is the link to watch it. Click here and here

Ashley-Austin-DoolansDid anything go wrong? We got married at 6pm,  so we took all of our pictures during the day time. My maid of honor had a mini hour freak out about her hair. After the hair stylists left we called my cousin over to fix her hair. Also, the florists with all of our bouquets got a flat tire on the way to drop them off, but thank God they made it there on time for pictures. So I, without a doubt, got lucky!

Ashley-Austin-DoolansFirst dance? My first dance song was “Perfect” by Ed Sheeran. Then went into a special, choreographed Hip hop dance to “Rapper’s Delight” by SugarHill Gang

Ashley-Austin-DoolansAdvice for other brides? My advice for all other brides is to enjoy every moment of your special day because it happens so fast. At one point of your wedding step back and take it all in, This day is all about you and your husband and the love you have for one another. The people that are there are all people that love you and want to see you and your husband succeed. My wedding was the best day of my life! Don’t sweat the small stuff! Believe me none is going to know if a flower is out of place. Just enjoy! Also one thing I did with my husband was at cocktail hour we said hello to everyone instead of going to everyone’s table at the reception. It’s your party you should be out on the dance floor.

Ashley-Austin-DoolansWhere did you go on your honeymoon? Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Unfortunately, all of the islands we wanted to go to got hit by the storm. But we got to be near family. So the party never stopped!

wedding details

Hometowns

Malboro, New Jersey

Reception Location

Doolan's Shore Club Caterers

Photographer

Red Bank Studios

Officiant

Rabbi William Kurry

Bride’s Gown

Allure Gown - Style 9252 Castle Couture

+ more