We haven’t properly announce this, but probably should. But in November of 2015, Elliott and I tied the knot officially with the Victorian Marriage Registry at the Old Treasury Building in Melbourne. Hoorah!
I know you are probably wondering, “aren’t you getting married in Bali.. in May?” Yes! Yes, we are! And yes, we’re still having a reception in Toronto as well. We just knew that the process of getting married overseas would be a giant headache with paperwork. Initially, we were going to get registered at Toronto City Hall, but our initial plan didn’t work out and we had to wait a little. About six weeks before our trip to Australia, I thought to myself “wouldn’t it be amazing to tie the knot in Melbourne instead?”. The Old Treasury Building is so spectacular, with iconic old Melbourne architecture and I knew I wanted a photo in front of the building. I proposed the idea with Elliott (who is the most supportive man on the planet) and he said YES… YAY!
The only problem was that the Victorian Marriage Registry needed our notarized application and supporting documentation 30 days prior to our wedding date. We knew that time was not on our side. I had mailed items to Australia and often my items would take up to 4-6 weeks.. But we were leaving in six weeks! We were sure cutting it close! That very night, we printed and filled out our application, gathered our supporting documents, and rushed to a notary to witness our application.
As he was placing his last embossing seal, he paused and looked at us rather confused. “Why are you getting married in Australia?”, he asked. “Because she wants kangaroos on our marriage certificate”, replied Elliott. Our notary laughed in approval, thinking that Elliott was just being a smart-aleck and gave us our application back. Little did he know that Elliott was right. I did want a kangaroo on my marriage certificate. I mean a kangaroo.. it’s SO CUTE! Who wouldn’t want a kangaroo on their marriage certificate! Almost every time I travel with my Australian passport, I proudly turn to him and say “do you know why we have an emu and a kangaroo as our Australian Coat of Arms? Because neither animal can move backwards, only forwards – symbolising progress”. Isn’t that so cool? I just love it. But c’mon, a kangaroo on my marriage certificate! IT IS JUST SO CUTE.
We mailed our application by registered post to Melbourne right away. Almost everyday we pulled up our tracking number to see its progress. No update. Then after two weeks of continuous checking, it finally updated to say it was received in Australia. Woo! But did the Victorian Marriage Registry receive our application? It wasn’t clear. Up until that point, we didn’t receive any email confirmation from them noting such. We were at the four week mark before we were about to leave for Australia. As previously mentioned, the registry needed our application 30 days before we wanted to get married. Another week went by and again, no updates. So we decided to follow up with them to ask whether they had received it… and they hadn’t. AHH!
A few more days went by and I had given up on the hope we would be able to have our marriage registered there. Our last day in Melbourne was November 26th. I was disappointed and wish we had thought of the idea earlier so we could have sent our application in much earlier to ensure it made it in time. Then one lovely morning I received an email from the Victorian Marriage Registry stating they finally received it…. on October 26th! They scheduled our wedding ceremony for November 26th, our last day in Melbourne! Talk about cutting it close!
So on the night of November 25th, we spent our night packing up. On the morning of November 26th, I wore my favourite lace top together with a long white tulle skirt I had made for my engagement photo session. Elliott wore his favourite three-piece suit. Along the way to our 2:00pm ceremony, we picked up some flowers from the local flower shop for FIVE BUCKS. I didn’t care what flowers I wanted, as long as it was pink. My parents attended as our witnesses and my brother stepped in as the role of our photographer. It was short and sweet, just the way we wanted it. We received our official marriage certificate (with a kangaroo on it!) and I got my photo in front of the Old Treasury Building. We celebrated our last meal in Melbourne by going to O’Town in Glen Waverley (per my mother’s suggestion after I decided for everyone that I wanted to have Malaysian food as there are not many good Malaysian restaurants in Toronto). Together, we devoured four classic Malaysian plates and finished it off with ice kacang and cendol. Oh yeah!
We went home to change out of our wedding attire, packed up our remaining items and then we were off to the airport as Mr and Mrs… Husband and wife.
Our Aussie Emu & Kangaroo marriage certificate.. scroll down for photos of our day, taken by my dear brother Denny!