After months and months of anticipation our special day has finally arrived!!! We had our family staying in a villa in Cavtat (roughly 20 kilometres from Dubrovnik) which was very nice as we could all be together in one big house! The night before the wedding, Michael wanted to be very traditional and not see me until the moment I walked down the aisle in the church. This proved to be quite difficult as we all were staying in the same villa and had to get ready in the same location but separate rooms. Needless to say, this was part of the excitement as I knew he was nearby at all times and different people would act as messengers so that we could communicate with each other but not see each other.
The morning of July 12th had finally come and I woke up so excited and a tad bit nervous! I went for a walk with my Dad, Tammy, Kristy and Andrew around Cavtat while Michael was busy writing and rehearsing his speech. The hair and make-up stylist, Davor arrived at the villa promptly at 9:30am. The girls got ready in the living room area while family and friends gathered in the nearby kitchen area. First, Davor went through all of our hairstyles and makeup needs. He was quiet, patient and was always thinking about how to make us all beautiful. We offered him food multiple times and he kept denying any food! I couldn’t believe it. He said to not worry as all he needed was a few cups of coffee and cigarettes to work his magic. This was so true, he drank about 4 cups of coffee and had a few cigarette breaks throughout the morning. This did wonders for him as he did the most amazing hair styles and makeup I have ever seen!
Davor worked his magic on Kristy (my Maid of Honour), Joy (my Mom), Lydia (Michael’s sister), Bek (my Aussie friend) and myself throughout the morning. It was great having family and friends come visit me in the Living room throughout the morning as I was not allowed to leave the room in case I saw Michael! Michael was so sweet and well-planned that he even surprised me with beautiful wedding presents to open while I got ready! I really felt like a princess 🙂 Erin and Justin also came to the villa to take part of the pre-wedding festivities. We listened to music, ate food, drank Moet and sparkling wine and really just enjoyed each other’s company.
The morning quickly flew past and 2pm rolled around. The wedding planner brought over the flowers and the photographer arrived soon after. We had arranged a huge bus to take everyone to the church in Dubrovnik at 2:50pm except for my Dad, sister and myself who left at 3:10pm in a luxury car J The next 50 minutes went by so quickly as everyone got dressed, did their final touch ups and left for the church. Quickly the house grew quiet with just my Dad and my sister waiting for our car. This was a surreal moment as it hit me that I was about to get MARRIED!!
The BMW arrived and luckily he had the AC running on full blast. The forecast said that it would be a nice 27 degrees Celsius, however it was completely wrong! It was 36 degrees Celsius and humid!!! The drive into Dubrovnik was absolutely beautiful as I had my Dad in the front seat and my sister in the back with me. I felt my nerves in my stomach and in my throat. I literally felt like I was going to vomit because I was so excited, nervous, anxious and just so incredibly happy.
We arrived to the “Ploce gate” in Dubrovnik where the photographer met up with us. I was told that Michael was already at the church waiting for us and that we could walk slowly through the old town and take our time as we were not required for another 20 minutes. Walking through the old town was surreal as random people were congratulating me, taking photos and speaking to me in different languages! Hehe We took it slowly walking to the church as it was extremely hot and we didn’t want to break a sweat before entering the church. We arrived at the bottom of the steps to the church and my heart started to beat out of my chest. I couldn’t tell if it was the workout or my nerves! At the top of the steps, we met with the wedding planner who allowed us a few minutes to cool off and get prepared. The three of us had done well with controlling our emotions and didn’t even cry! I was so surprised that we kept it together……….UNTIL……. we were told to go in and I could hear the Violin and Cello duo play my entrance song!!!! I could hear Kissing You by Des’ree from Romeo and Juliet and I started to break down and ball my eyes out! My Dad quickly followed me in tears and here we were embarrassed and crying outside of the church. My sister had already began to walk down the aisle so we knew that we had to pull it together and make our grand entrance!
As we walked into the church, I could see our family and friends smiling, cheering and crying!! I locked eyes with Michael and was so incredibly happy to be walking down the aisle to him. I was arm and arm with my Dad and slowly walked down the aisle so happy that he was there to give me away. I think we cried the entire walk as it meant so much to both my Dad and myself.
Padre Peter ran the church ceremony for us in English and did a short greeting in Croatian. Tammy read the 1st reading and Lydia read the 2nd reading. In between each section of the mass, the violin and cello duo played Ave Marie Bach, Amazing grace and Pachelbel’s Canon. It was absolutely beautiful. It was then time for us to say our vows to each other. We turned to each other and held back our tears. I didn’t want to be a complete mess the whole time! Hehe. Once the priest said that he may kiss the bride, I was filled with butterflies and excitement. It was official, WE WERE MARRIED!!!!
It was time for the recessional song (which was my favourite song of all time), Halo by Beyoncé. It sounded even more beautiful with just the violin and cello.
We took photos outside of the church with all of our family and friends and then headed to a surprise location that the guests didn’t know about. As we walked through the old town as a married couple we received many congratulations which really made us feel special. We even posed in photos for random people! Our guests thought that we were headed to the reception until we made a sudden turn and headed to the port! We surprised our guests with a private boat cruise around Dubrovnik. This was such a beautiful part of the day as everyone could sit, relax, drink and be merry. The view of the old city and islands were breathtaking. We even saw a nudist beach! Haha
After an hour on the boat cruise, the guests were guided by the wedding planner to the next surprise, our reception! We picked the Hotel Excelsior Palm Terrace as it had breathtaking views of the Old Town and amazing food!!! Michael and I were taking photos in the Old Town with the photographer while our guests were having drinks on the Palm Terrace.
Before joining everyone at the reception, we were allowed to checkout our Honeymoon Suite and freshen up. I had never been in a more immaculate room before in my life! The views of the Adriatic and Old Town were stunning.
It was time for us to enter the palm terrace as Mr and Mrs Hadusek to our favourite song, Happiness by Alexis Jordan. Seeing the smiles on everyone’s faces really made us feel special and happy that we were celebrating this special day with our loved ones.
While planning for the wedding, we decided to blend together a mixture of cultures. We had both Hawaiian, Croatian and English music played. The cold starter arrived which was – Traditional Dalmatian smoked ham, sheep’s milk cheese from the island of Pag and Istrian goat cheese with truffles, bitter orange marmalade and pickled vegetables. Soon after the warm starter arrived – Green meat lasagne with black olive paste, balsamic vinegar and basil cream. The food was absolutely divine and presented beautifully.
After the two courses, it was time for our first dance! We picked a Hawaiian song that fitted us perfectly “The Rest of Your Life”. I couldn’t stop crying throughout the song but looking into Michael’s eyes just made me so happy. We did a few twirls and on the last twirl the flower in my hair flew off! Hehe It just made me smile but it didn’t matter to me as I was in my husband’s arms. Another beautiful song came on afterwards and we invited everyone up to join us. It was very special to have our loved ones on the dance floor with us enjoying in this moment. By the 3rd song, the DJ had cranked it up to a dance song and soon EVERYONE (seriously EVERYONE) joined in! There was not 1 person sitting in their chair. The entire group got up onto the dance floor and boogied! This was so much fun!!!! We danced for a while until our main dishes arrived.
For the mains guests had a choice of Prune mousse stuffed chicken breast in herb crust with ragù of homemade spätzle or a filet of Seabass. The sun started to set and a beautiful colourful moon arrived. It changed from yellow to orange to red! It was exquisite! After the mains, in true Croatian style, we started to dance again. We danced to a mixture of English and Croatian music. I didn’t know the words but it didn’t stop us from dancing. I became part of a circle where everyone just starts spinning quickly. I believe this is a traditional Croatian dance called Kolo. I couldn’t hold up my dress and spin as quickly as everyone else so I went in the centre and had everyone spinning around me! This was so much fun 🙂
After our mains, desserts arrived which was my all-time favourite…. Crème Brulee! By this time, everyone was pretty full and were just happy to dance. After a few songs, it was time to cut the cake. We had a 2-tier cake with the bottom tier being our favourite red velvet and the 2nd tier being chocolate cake. To be honest, by this point I couldn’t even eat the wedding cake and just loved dancing with everyone.
Then the moment came for speeches. My Dad, Michael’s Dad and of course Michael all had wonderful speeches which really touched the heart. It was the best day of my life and I was so happy to hear such wonderful gifts of wisdom and blessings. It meant so much to me to have both of our families together to celebrate with us.
Unfortunately, it was time to end our party at Hotel Excelsior, but for some of the guests, we continued on at East West Night Club just a few steps away which was right on the beach. Shots, cocktails and great music ended our lovely day.
I can’t believe that this day has actually come and go. It really does feel like a whirlwind, but I made sure that I cherished every moment of it. It was everything I could possibly dream of and I am so excited that I will forever be with Michael Hadusek.