Not all love is at first sight...the heart does not always follow the mind, or the mind follow the heart, and often time is necessary to awaken them both to a truth our spirit already knows. Like the aging of wine, that revelatory moment when mind, body and spirit align is all the more refined with the passing of time - and that special someone is then seen, as if for the first time, in the new light of love. Regardless if it's "first sight" or a later revelation, time is always necessary in building a healthy relationship foundation in which the vulnerability of the heart finds safety in the ability to express itself without inhibition.
For Sarah and Shingy, acquaintanceship gave way to friendship, which developed into best-friendship, maturing into love, and finally the love of one's life. That time spent cultivating their love built an unshakable relationship foundation that will surely support them for the rest of their lives together.
Read all about Sarah and Shingy's love story and romantic Jamaican vacation proposal!
Bride & Groom: Sarah Mauppa & Shingy Chinyani
Occupations: Sarah - Executive Records Analyst & Jack of All Trades (and competent in them all), Shingy - Operations Supervisor
Wedding date: October 14, 2016
Wedding location: Ascott Parc (Ceremony), Fontana Primavera (Reception), Ontario, Canada
Tell us how you met and all about the proposal: We met when Shingy first came to Canada in 2006 and he came to our church for the first time. To be honest, I didn't really notice him at first, he was just another guy. Matter of fact I didn't really like him as I wasn't too pleased with how he responded when I tried to befriend him. That day we exchanged numbers and became occasional friends. He would call me trying to go out and I would play hard to get. Eventually we became very close friends, best-friends. We started dating officially a few years after that.
In 2012 we went on our first vacation together in Jamaica, and little did I know there was a very pleasant surprise waiting for me on this trip. My family knew, my best-friend knew, I was the only one that was not aware that Shingy was planning to propose on our Jamaica get-away. The first night we were there, I guess nerves got the best of him, as he did not go with his original plan of proposing during a romantic dinner on the beach. After dinner on our first night, I was so full my stomach hurt, & just wanted to lie down. Shingy on the other hand wanted to go up to the balcony and watch the night sky and hear the ocean breeze. After much convincing we were on the balcony and Shingy was down on one knee saying something I don't quite recall as I was crying like a baby and shaking in disbelief and shock. Truth be told, I thought he would propose 2 months before that on my birthday dinner when he took me to the CN tower. Long story short the rest of our trip was spent as a newly engaged couple. Our engagement was long, but it was worth it!
What was wedding shopping like for you? Shopping for me was a nightmare! I am a very picky person and so it was very frustrating finding a dress. I had been wedding dress shopping for years! Each time I went shopping for a dress I would either fall in love with the bottom and not the top or the top and not the bottom part of the dress, in some instances I liked the dress, but because I wanted a blush dress, it would not be available in the color. So I knew I had to get my dress custom made. I shopped around for custom designer and finally through browsing on IG I found Gert-Johan Coetzee. It was the best decision ever! Gert-Johan is TALENTED & he did such a phenomenal job bringing my vision to life. I feel like wearing my dress over and over again. I look at it everyday.
Did you incorporate any culture into your wedding? Yes, in our culture the bride and the groom serve their new in-laws cake. Part of that cake serving ceremony is to go around washing the family's hands. Me and my sisters went around on our knees washing our in-law's hands, then served them cake.
What is your best memory from your wedding? Sarah - the first dance. At one point, it felt like no-one else was in the room and it was just me and him & our eternal love! Shingy - when he first saw me walking down the isle, he was blown away and his heart skipped a beat.
Bridesmaids/Groomsmen gifts: Groomsmen received monogrammed flasks and engraved cufflinks with (Best-man here for you, Groomsmen - here for you too). My bridesmaids received bridesmaids proposal messages in a box & personalized candles.
Favorite item on the menu: Dessert, Tiramisu in Tulip cup
First dance song: Mellowdee Canada's rendition of Kem's Love Calls
What is the best wedding advice you can give to engaged couples? Plan, plan, plan, but after all the planning know that certain things can and will go wrong (realistically speaking). Don't focus on the negative, stay focused on the positive. Let go and let God. At the end of the day as long as you're both present and focused on each other and your love, everything else won't matter. My husband's love is what got me through the day.
Photographer - Samantha Clarke
Videographer - DMS Video Productions
Cake - Cakes by Mavis
Dance floor/custom backdrop/red carpet - AXE Media
Decorator - Luxe Soiree Events
Ceremony Venue - Ascott Parc
Reception Venue - Fontana Primavera
Makeup Artist - Afia Beauty
The talented: Dwight Grant, Mellowdee Canada (Solo artist) - mellowdeecanada.com
Wedding dress - Gert-Johan Coetzee
Shoes - Kate Spade, Lydia
Wedding planner - Sarah Mauppa
Event design: Sarah Mauppa & Luxe Soiree Events