Our Civil Union #kmwedding

My best friend and I bought a house together in April 2015, and then later got engaged over the December holiday in 2015. Even though we already knew we wanted to spend the rest of our lives together, Kyle still wanted to surprise me. And you know what? He did good.

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Kyle van der Holst & Ming-Cheau Lin Civil Union at the Darwin exhibit in the Iziko Museum.

For those who know us, we’re not big on celebrations and parties, and our union was no different. Kyle and I didn’t feel the need to have a wedding. Firstly, we’re from different cultures – which meant different wedding customs. Secondly, we just didn’t want to have a wedding. It was a bit disappointing to family and friends, but it just wasn’t something we wanted and we’re glad that they all eventually understood and accepted it. Now that we are married, we wouldn’t have done things any differently.

We decided to get married somewhere special to us. So we chose the Darwin exhibit that showcases his discoveries at the Galapagos “On the origins of species” at the Iziko South African Museum (where we had our first date). In the early days of our relationship we bonded over Charles Darwin documentaries, ooh-ing and aah-ing over ‘Lonesome George‘ and blue-footed boobies. So we got in touch with the museum and Garrett Eriksen, the marketing & PR coordinator, helped us organise. His reply to my informal wedding venue request mail:

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There was a small payment involved to arrange staff to assist us in the venue, which is part of their regular venue hire activities/fees.

Next, we needed someone to marry us. My friends, Petra and Buzz, recommended Andred from I Do Weddings.co.za for a non-religious civil union. It was an easy process, and Andred was more than helpful to get things sorted. We needed passport photos, our IDs, our witnesses’ IDs and a location that has a roof.

Then we needed rings. A lot of you may know, I’m rather klutzy, so we decided on strong rings that won’t damage over time. We decided to get titanium wedding bands from Titanium Studio as recommended by our witnesses for their great customer service. It was great service, just by the way.

What to wear? Initially we planned to simply dig clothes out of the back of our closet (you know, the fancy stuff) but only Kyle stuck to that plan. On the 24th of April, I was invited to model for a fun shoot (OF ROSES) with Grethe Rosseaux Photography. The outfits from the shoot were made and designed by the talented Stephan of ILAN Clothing. He and his wife (Dell-Marie) are the nicest people, and offered to squeeze in an order – to make up a skirt like the ones of the dresses I loved in the ‘OF ROSES’ shoot with a matching black vest in less than a month’s time.

We asked our friends Lil and Rob to be our witnesses, and of course to take a few pictures for us. Thank you guys, we love you. The ceremony was sweet, Kyle said things and I said things, Lily said things … it was heartwarming and fuzzy feelings. With the tune of singing whales in the background, a perfect moment will be remembered for life. Here are some beautiful memories taken.

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14 Responses

  1. Lily
    | Reply

    And we love you right back! Such an honour to witness the start of your lives together. So much love

  2. Lisa Huang
    | Reply

    This is such a gorgeous way to celebrate your union as Mr & Mrs, Ming! Congratulations 😀

  3. Grethe
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    Congratulations, guys! <3 So happy to have somehow have been a part of this most special event in your lives! <3 :3

  4. Soungle
    | Reply

    What a beautiful story Ming! Congratulations to u and your new husband. I’m so happy you were able to have the celebration that defines who U and your husband are. I wish u a blissful marriage for the rest of your beautiful lives 😉

  5. Dell-Marie
    | Reply

    Aw Ming, the pictures are so emotional! So happy for you and Kyle:) You are such an amazing person, and anyone that puts a smile on your face can only be awesome!May you laugh together in the good times and be each others strength in the challenging ones. Love Dxx

    • Ming-Cheau
      | Reply

      Die rok was soooo mooi! Dankie Dell-Marie and Stephan, you two are amazing.

  6. Hila
    | Reply

    Aaaaw. The group hug photo is my favourite 🙂

  7. zirkie
    | Reply

    Wow! Congratulations to both of you, Ming! I hope you will be as happy as you are now for the next 101 years! xxxxx

  8. Ismail
    | Reply

    Congratulations Ming.. I hope you all the best in your Civil union..many many happy years.

  9. V
    | Reply

    How awesome! Gorgeous pics. If I ever get married, I’d want something non-traditional and non-religious too.

    • Ming-Cheau
      | Reply

      Thank you, was good fun and almost a year now! 🙂 It’s all about having the choice to do what makes us comfortable.

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