Esmeralda was very smart while she and Agustin were planning their Valentine’s Day wedding at Padua Hills Theatre in Claremont, CA. Why was she smart? Because she knew that trying to get married on Valentine’s Day is hard because wedding officiants book up fast for big days like that. So she asked me to be their wedding minister a full eight months prior to their wedding. Now that’s planning!

First off, Esmeralda and Agustin were super sweet and easy to chat with. They’ve been together since high school and I quickly could tell by the way they interacted. They are very in tune with each other even when they don’t agree on something.

When we talked about the ceremony, they said they wanted something that was respectful to their more traditional family, but was definitely non-religious, fun, honored their tight bond, and included some Spanish. Oh, and they really wanted a sand ceremony!

I put a lot of emphasis on their love story during the ceremony, focusing on when first started dating and how much they’ve been through together since then. And we made sure to include the families in one of my favorite parts of the ceremony, the Charge to the Loved Ones!

La familia y amigos, el matrimonio no es algo que dos personas inventan o construir por sí mismos. Se necesita una comunidad mucho más amplia de la familia y amigos para hacer cualquier trabajo de la unión. Cada uno de ustedes ha sido invitado hoy aquí porque eres una parte de esa comunidad.


Family and friends, marriage is not something two people invent or construct by themselves. It takes a far wider community of family and friends to make any marriage work. Each of you have been invited here today because you are a part of that community.

I also highlighted how contrasting but complementary their personalities are — she’s driven, ambitious, and punctual while he’s laid back, completely present, and always ready to laugh. This worked really well with the contrasting sand they chose in their wedding colors.

Blue and black wedding colors sand ceremony

But what it all came down to was their love for each other and the support of their family and friends. And how cute is this idea?!

We made a heart for the bride and groom at Padua Hills Theatre

Used with permission by Enchanted Portraiture

I had a blast being Esmeralda and Agustin’s Los Angeles wedding officiant, partly because I got to do a ceremony in Spanglish (always a fun challenge) but mostly because they were just so fun to be around! Plus, I always love working at Padua Hills Theatre (I mean, did you see the photos?!) and with Enchanted Portraiture. Hi Curtis!!

Bride and groom with Minister Marie at Padua Hills Theatre in Claremont

Used with permission by Enchanted Portraiture

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