“We met on November 2, 2012, sitting next to each other at brunch. Jbeau knew the two people I was with, we started chatting, and the rest is history,” Milana Rabkin recalls about meeting her future husband, Jbeau Lewis. Three years later, he popped the question after Milana returned home from a business trip.
During Thanksgiving weekend, friends and loved ones traveled to San Jose Del Cabo, Mexico, for the couple’s festive weekend celebration. “We broke a lot of norms. Instead of sending paper invites, we sent an email with our wedding website. We wanted to get married on the beach, so we encouraged guests to be barefoot and dress comfortably in all white. We didn’t have bridesmaids or groomsmen,” lists the bride. A mariachi band performed “Here Comes the Bride” as Milana’s parents escorted her down the aisle. The groom wore his grandfather’s wedding band as the lovebirds stood beneath a chuppah during their seaside ceremony. “We were raised with different religious beliefs and traditions, so we wanted to incorporate various elements from Christianity and Judaism in a non-religious manner,” she explains. As a surprise to their attendees, confetti cannons were fired during the newlyweds’ first kiss. “Confetti was everywhere. It was amazing!” Milana muses of the special moment.
The joyous entertainment continued into the reception. “We had fire dancers during cocktail hour, a surprise, highly choreographed first dance, and late-night snacks at the bonfire,” explains the bride. In lieu of a conventional reception dinner, the couple planned the fare so guests could party all night long. “We wanted guests dancing, so instead of having a sit-down dinner with assigned seating, we had food stations serving throughout the night, designated farm tables for those who wanted to eat, and lots of lounge areas around the dance floor to create a club-like feel,” Milana reveals. Each guest traveled back home with shirts and flasks emblazoned with “I Heart MJ,” which was also the couple’s hashtag. “We even reflected the logo on the side of the hotel and on the dance floor,” the bride smiles of their lighting design.
Like many other brides, Milana encourages engaged couples to look at the big picture. “Don’t sweat the small stuff!”