For Amy Edwards and Kartik Pandya, falling in love was just what the doctor ordered.
Amy, an intensive care nurse at Maine Medical Center in Portland, met Kartik a surgical resident through a close mutual friend.
“He was incredibly shy when we first met, it was the cutest thing” Amy said. “I’m such an outgoing person; I took it as a personal challenge to bring him out of his shell.”
It was about two weeks after a Halloween party in 2007; Amy got a text asking her to dinner. He cooked a romantic homemade meal for her. “Kartik said that in his Indian culture sharing a meal with another person is a true expression of caring,” Amy said. “After that first date I was completely hooked.”
As Kartik continued his residency and she worked on a Family Nurse Practitioner degree, the relationship continued to grow more serious, yet after two years of dating there was still no signs of an engagement ring. Amy thought he would never “pop the question”. What she didn’t know was that he had already started looking at rings.
In November of 2010, almost 3 years to the day that they had started dating, Kartik surprised her with a weekend away in Bar Harbor.
“He proposed with a fake ring,” she said. “It was gaudy and yellow, the complete opposite of anything we had looked at, but I figured if this was the ring he had picked for me then I was ready to love it.” “After he took in about 5 minutes of enjoyment in my confusion about the ring he asked if I wanted the real one, it was perfect.”
The ring had been custom made in India by a family jeweler. Once she said yes, planning was underway. “I took charge, after realizing that my attempts to include him only led to more challenges than progress” Amy said. However, she included him whenever possible, “he very was interested in cake tasting.”
The couple integrated their cultures through the music of Village to Village, a duo specializing in multicultural music, including music from Turkey, Greece, and a processional piece from Macedonia. An exotic touch was added with orchids, flowers that held special meaning for the couple. “It’s the first flower he gave me,” she said noting that he’s replace the original orchid twice. “
“One of our goals was to make our family and friends feel truly included in our coastal wedding weekend.” The Retreat at French’s Point was the perfect backdrop for a classic Maine wedding.
Leading up to the wedding family and friends celebrated at a cottage on the ocean in Stockton Springs. They hosted a rehearsal brunch and then invited guests to join them aboard a catered sunset schooner cruise out of Camden Harbor.
On the Big Day, Amy started off with a run down the beach before heading up to the Retreat to start preparing. “I was so relaxed, I was trying to enjoy every second of my day” she said.
“Watching it all unfold, with everyone you love waiting for you: That’s what I was looking forward to most. Walking the cobblestone path to where Kartik was waiting: That was my fairytale moment. He looked truly happy and I wanted to be there next to him.”
Cocktail hour, complete with fresh, local seafood and delights harvested from the gardens at French’s Point, was coupled with live music, and an attentive staff. The couple and their guests dined on a two course sit-down dinner prepared by the extraordinary chefs at the Retreat.
After heartfelt speeches, a traditional cake cutting and couples first dance, Kartik led the way as he shed his quiet demeanor and hit the dance floor .“He went from this introverted, shy person when we first met to king of the dance floor, I love it.” “In fact, he was on the dance floor more than I was.”
The coup de grace was a special display of fireworks set off one hour after sunset.
“It was one of the things I really wanted,” she said. “It was the cherry on top.”
The couple is planning a honeymoon over the holidays to Turks and Cacios. “Try not to stress about the details,” she said. ”When the day comes, the most important part is that you’re there and the person you love is there. Everything else falls away.”
- Rehearsal dinner: Appledore Schooner cruise out of Camden Harbor catered by Megunticook Market
- Ceremony/reception/catering/decor: Retreat at French’s Point
- Guest lodging: Chateau Mer, a private cottage on the ocean on Sandy Point, for family and wedding party. Other guests stayed in local accommodations.
- Flowers: Jeanne Russell at Island Flowers
- Favors: Donation to animal refuge league
- Cake: Nothing Bakes like a Parrott
- Ceremony music: Village to Village, string duo that plays rich multicultural music.
- Reception music: DJ Danny Dibiase
- Hair: Tammy Rodrique, a private stylist.
- Make-up artist: Kimberly Sullivan of Westbrook
- Bride’s gown: A Maggie Sottero Geneva gown from Andrea’s Bridal
- Bridesmaid dresses: David’s Bridal
- Groom/groomsmen ties: Special order
- Groom’s and groomsmen attire: Mens Warehouse
- Bride’s engagement ring: Custom designed and created in India
- Bride and groom wedding bands: Special order
- Invitations: Charlie Herbst, Bayside Printing in Portland
- Photographer: Jen Dean Photography for Russell Caron Photography
- Officiant: Scott Rodrique
- Fireworks: Central Maine Pyrotechnics