We met while both studying veterinary science at Onderstepoort and it was love at first sight- I showed his photo to my mom that same week, and I later found out- he did the same with his mom!
His nickname is Tiny- which he is anything but! And my nickname is Tiekies- from the afrikaans saying " 'n baksteen en 'n tiekie hoog" (quick translation- a brick and a half cent high!). He's my gentle giant with the biggest heart of anyone I know <3.
4 years, 4 dogs and 6 cats later, we had our magical day amidst God, close family and friends at the Zimbali Country Club along the Dolphin Coast of KZN and it was pure magic- I even walked down the aisle in the rain! I just couldn't wait to marry my soul mate <3
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We started off by spending our first 2 nights in Zimbali lodge in one of their forest suites- the most gorgeous view to awaken to! My parents spoilt us with the honeymoon night as part of their gift to us. Champagne and chocolates, candlelit bubble baths and the most amazing four-poster bed were just some of the delights :)
The next 3 nights were spent at the Bushwillow Collection in Hluhluwe in their red ivory boutique- we had our own private swimming pool in the middle of the bush! The staff were fabulous- they gifted us and gave their blessing for our marriage, leaving a branch of the tambotie and maroela trees on the bed for us, with "mr and mrs botha" engraved. Their food and service were excellent, and we were continuously spoiled with thoughtful little surprises!
While at Bushwillow, we toured Hluhluwe-Imflozi Game Park, Croc World, went for a spa day (hubby was a bit hesitant but ended up loving it!), went on game drives and on bush walks, and just generally enjoyed spending quality time together!
Our last 3 nights were spent at Dream Beach in Ponta Malongane, Mozambique- what an experience! It was our first time there, and hubby's boss had lent us his 4x4 and gifted us with a full tank of petrol for the honeymoon. We went snorkeling on the reef, saw humpback whales and their calves, and also turtles swimming right next to our boat! We will never forget the experience and still crave the amazing seafood!
My look for the day was kept as natural and as much "me" as I could manage! :)
My hair was done by my aunt- my family are a family of hairdressers, and they definitely know what they are doing! I had opted for loose and natural curls- it's what my hair does best! My aunt spent quite a bit of time curling it and getting it just right- and then the rain started! While the hair may have fallen a bit flat, my spirits certainly didn't- I still floated down the aisle with happiness, nothing was going to get to me that day!
Something old: And the bride wore boots! I wanted to be comfortable enough to dance the night away and not have to worry about heels and tired feet :) on the plus side- my hubby loves that I'm short ;)
Something new: What to pick? My gorgeous baby's breath floral headpiece? My beautiful gown? I loved every single minute of planning for this day :)
Something borrowed: My mom's friend loaned me the most beautiful tennis bracelet for the day. I had always planned to wear a beautiful bracelet Gustav bought me when we first started dating, but unfortunately lost it in the move down to Natal last year December.
Something blue: Gustav surprised me the morning of the wedding by sending a gift with one of my bridesmaids- he had bought me a beautiful pair of silver and blue starfish earrings that I had been obsessing over for a couple of months, but hadn't bought for myself- there were tears!!
We got married on a wooden deck surrounded by trees at Zimbali Country Club in Ballito, KZN, and the reception was held at their Crowned Eagle restaurant.
Most of our guests drove down or flew down from Gauteng, and stayed all over in Ballito to celebrate the day with us- we are so blessed to have such amazing family and friends!
I love the bush, and Gustav loves the beach. So we combined our loves of nature by hosting a beach/mangrove swamp theme in a bush setting :)
Mangrove roots were the focal points for each table, and were draped with seashell garlands, with white rose petals and cowrie shells scattered between clusters of candles on a grey table cloth setting. The table numbers were reminiscent of a message in a bottle, with starfish detail. Wooden base plates completed the effect :)
Clusters of fairy lights hung from the ceiling, and fairy lights flickered behind the sweetheart table.
Gustav had made a wooden sign as the focal point for our sweetheart table, with "Mr & Mrs Botha" written between starfish. Candle clusters, cowrie shells and rose petals completed the effect.
The bridal party bouquets were over-sized paper flowers- which was an absolute brilliant idea until the rain started :) crepe and tissue paper don't take too kindly to being wet! But I had a blast making the flowers (Gustav even helped!) and if I had a do-over- I'd definitely do it again :)
The groom and groomsmen wore blazer jackets, old khaki shirts (white for the groomsmen, black for the groom) and cream chinos, with grey pocket squares.
My bridesmaids all wore pastel grey, floor length dresses, each in their own style!
Our pastor ended up cancelling on us a few weeks before the wedding- but not to worry, my brother in law ( a trainee pastor) came to the rescue! He married us in a beautiful ceremony in front of close friends and family, and it actually couldn't have worked out better! There is nothing more special than family marrying family :)
I am kind of a no-fuss-no-muss kind of girl, and jokingly told my dad to organize an old jeep for my transport car (he works in the motor industry). His boss heard of this and absolutely refused, sending a chauffeur to transport me in a luxury Rolls Royce instead! Very lucky girl!
The food was prepared by Zimabli at their Crowned eagle restaurant- it was amazing! We wanted to insure our guests had an amazing meal, and had an Afrikaans food theme going for the wedding:
Starters: Lamb "skilpaadjies" on bruschetta with "Pap and Kaaings".
Mains: BRAAIVLEIS! Pork neck steaks and Rump steaks, served with various delicious sides: "pampoen koekies", braaied mielies, bacon wrapped green beans and creamed spinach. Yum!
Dessert: Milk tart and Malva pudding and custard.
Who wouldn't want to eat all of that yumminess? :)
The cake was made by a wonderful friend and professional wedding cake maker, Nicole Momogos- it was absolutely beautiful, and tasted even better! I don't even eat cake- but I ate our wedding cake! :)
It was a three tiered naked chocolate cake, with each tier a different chocolate flavour.
We went paperless!! I used various on line templates and created our own unique invites, with everything digital! I kept in constant contact with my guests, sending them an update using these templates every couple of weeks via watsapp. Easy, stress free, no wasting of paper and unique!