In July 2017, Krystal's friend encouraged her to reactivate her online dating profile. After some hesitation, Krystal decided to give it another try. The very next morning, she received a message from Bill and the two chatted online for about two weeks before taking their conversation offline. Their first date was what Krystal likes to call their "endless weekend"; there was an After 7/Mint Condition concert, the Blacks in Government Scholarship Gala, and Bill met Krystal's mom for the first time. Their chemistry was undeniable and their love story began! Take a peek at their stunning walk down the aisle captured by Second Shots Photography.
Bride: Krystal Studavent Ramsey, 39, Senior Legal Sales Consultant + Attorney, Axiom Law
Groom: Billy Ray Ramsey, Jr., 46, Senior Project Manager, United Health
Photography by: Edward Heard of Second Shots Photography
Place of residence: Houston, TX
Wedding date: February 29, 2020 (Leap Day)
Wedding location : New Life Christian Center, San Antonio, TX
Wedding theme/motif/inspiration: "Ramsey's Romance & Roses Wedding". I love receiving roses all throughout the year, and I wanted my wedding and reception venue to be filled with them. I wanted the scene to ooze with romance from the music to the décor to the lighting.
Honeymoon Destination: Pre-COVID, we planned to celebrate in a big way with a four-part honeymoon in honor of our wedding falling on Leap Day. We only made it to our first trip - an oceanside, luxury boutique hotel in Ixtapa, Mexico. As soon as we returned to Houston, they instructed us to go home immediately and stay there until further notice to shelter-in-place.
On March 3, 2019, my mom and I went to Prego restaurant after visiting Lakewood Church, as the finale to a mother-daughter bonding weekend. Tiphany (my cousin who is like my sister) reached out to me a week prior to my mom coming to town to coordinate meeting us for lunch. My mom and I arrived at the restaurant first and then Tiphany and her husband, Reggie, arrived next. We ordered our food and continued to converse, laugh, and enjoy each other's company. Suddenly, I heard a saxophone playing this beautiful music and Chris Mitchell, a Grammy Recording Academy saxophonist, emerged from the kitchen! I I could not believe it!
Chris walked over and played directly in front of me and then, Bill came out dressed in his suit and tie holding a bouquet of flowers. He walked over to my mom, hugged her, and handed her the bouquet of flowers. He then came over to me, asked me to stand up, took my hand in his hand, and said, "You are my best friend and the love of my life. I am so blessed to have you in my life and would be more than happy if you would be my wife." I wiped his tears and happily accepted. We swayed slowly to the music. After Chris finished playing, we took pictures and celebrated the momentous occasion. A day that will forever be etched in our hearts and that we will never forget.
What makes your love special?
What makes our love special is that we both knew it was God sent, which was apparent to us after spending one weekend together. What started as an "endless weekend" expanded to an endless love. The key to this kind of love was that the love had to begin within ourselves. I was single for eight years, and Bill was single for nine years. In that time, God shined light on our scars and what we wanted and needed in a relationship. God fixed what was broken, filled us with love and peace, and taught us the meaning of energy. We turned inward to discover who we are (enjoying our season of solitude), prayed to God to know the meaning of self-love and about what we wanted in a partner.
From the Bride:
My wedding was a weekend and family affair with lots of music, romantic touches, and San Antonio landmarks, all orchestrated by my mother (our wedding planner) and my aunt (our wedding designer). The wedding weekend started with a welcome cocktail cruise on the Riverwalk with a playlist created by me followed by a rehearsal dinner at one of my favorite restaurants and where we went on our third date, La Margarita. We had a wedding with over 350 guests with two receptions - a beautiful dessert reception in the lakeside gazebo area at New Life Christian Center and a private dinner reception with 150 guests at Hotel Valencia. The weekend ended on Sunday with a post-wedding brunch at the landmark restaurant, The Guenther House.
From the Groom:
The wedding experience was magical to me because every part of it was done with the love of family. From start to finish, it was everything I could have dreamed of because the atmosphere was one filled with love and God's presence. The excitement I felt was something that will be everlasting. In fact, every time I think about the day, a huge smile comes across my face. The memory will last forever. The day we became one and our families connected will be forever in my heart as a day of pure joy and happiness. I also had a bride that did not get too overwhelmed with the moment and allowed herself to take in the experience with peace and love for me and all who shared the day with us.
Your best/most memorable moment:
There were so many memorable moments during our wedding weekend, but the best moment was our first dance. We entered the ballroom dancing to the iconic dance hit, "It Takes Two" by Doug E. Fresh. When we made it to the dance floor, we performed a dance routine that we choreographed a week prior to our wedding which segued into our first dance to "Ready or Not" by After 7. We were both so emotional because this was the song After 7 performed at the concert we went to for our first date at Arena Theater in Houston, TX. As soon as the song started, fireworks went off around us as we slow danced underneath our rose-covered chandelier!
Wedding song, explain choice for song:
I must give the full song lineup because it was fire! I am an avid music fan, so I selectively picked each song to capture each moment of our special day. See below:
- Lighting of Unity Candle: "So Amazing" - track by Luther Vandross
- Slideshow: "You're All I Need to Get By" - track by Aretha Franklin
- Inspirational Dance: "Beautiful Surprise" - track by India Arie and dance by Natalya Ward
- Groom Entrance: "Whenever, Wherever, Whatever" - track by Maxwell
- Entrance of Wedding Processional: "Endless Love" by Luther Vandross and Mariah Carey, performed live by LaKeisha Jackson and Kurt Jeffries
- Bride Entrance: "My Love, Sweet Love" by Patti Labelle, performed live by Pastor Dorothy Bedford
- Lighting of the Candle: "You Were Meant for Me" by Donny Hathaway, performed live by Oscar Ford
- Recessional: "We're Blessed" - track by Fred Hammond
- First Dance: "Ready or Not" - track by After 7
Favorite wedding detail:
My favorite wedding details were the musical acts/performances (as mentioned above in #7) and our rose chandelier at our dinner reception which was created using more than 100 roses!
What are you most looking forward to as a married couple?
Building and growing together from a home to businesses to expanding our family and knowing that we are doing it in love with a God-sent partner, lover, and friend - all that we both prayed for.
Advice for a Bride/Groom on their wedding day:
Things will more than likely go wrong, but at the end of the day, you know the plan and will be the only to be aware of any mistakes. The guests are oblivious unless you told them, so they will take what happens at face value. Relax and take the day as it comes (the good and the bad), because it is about you and your partner solidifying your bond in love and peace. Also, do your research and create a wedding plan. Instagram and The Knot are great resources! Check out vendor and venue reviews on Yelp before you book.
Please feel free to include any other interesting anecdotes from your big day!
Surprise song and dance by bride and friend at dinner reception: My friend (who I have known since sixth grade), LaKeisha Jackson, and I had a group called Young Black Images in middle school. We would perform at local talent shows and other events. We thought it would be fun to do a one-night only reunion surprise performance for my husband (who never even knew about the group)! Bill was brought to the dance floor and asked to sit in a chair. We did an outfit change and the MC brought us out to the dance floor. We performed a choreographed dance routine which included a tasteful lap dance and us singing live. He loved it!
Wife and Husband escorted in by Pug: Khloe, my mom's pug, is who escorted me and Bill out to greet our guests at our dessert reception, following the Mexican parade.
Bill serenaded me with a classic Earth, Wind & Fire tune: The MC handed Bill the microphone since he saw him singing to me, and out of nowhere, Bill grabbed the mic, stood up, and serenaded me. I could not believe it! He had recently performed at karaoke for the first time when we went to Las Vegas a few months prior, but I was one of his few listeners, so when he decided to perform for a room of 150 people, it blew me and everyone else in the room away!
Congratulations to the happy couple! We wish you a fruitful marriage and many years of wedded bliss!