This is a short story of a real wedding – written from the perspective of “JOY”


Hello, I am Joy, the ancient spirit of gratitude that flows throughout the earth. You may know me as the feeling of great pleasure and happiness, most often accompanied by love, and best embodied by laughter. I have existed since the creation of the world, and hopefully you’ve experienced me already today? If not, this story ought to help!

There are few things in this world that I love more than the weekends, because that means it’s time for weddings. I really get to show off on wedding days. But it’s not just me; there’s a shift in the air for everyone. It’s as if people are more expectant and alert, and something happens to cause them to slip away from the world for a moment and truly celebrate. 

Each wedding day is a moment etched in time, not only for the bride and groom, but also for families and loved ones, who get to witness the uniting of two lovers. Love is a powerful thing.

Conor and Em

I MUST tell you about the perfect outdoor fall wedding I attended a few weeks ago for a man named Conor Monte and his lovely bride Em (short for Emily). 

The setting was at a gorgeous cabin nestled in the towering woods of the Adirondack mountains. Fall had just arrived and leaves were in their truest form. It was truly a perfect wedding, with 120 beautiful people dressed in wedding finery, rich purple mums, yellow and orange pumpkins, a roaring campfire, bright stars, and music through the night – the ideal backdrop for uniting the souls of Conor and Em. 

Joy (that’s me!) runs radiant through Conor and Em. Conor is a confident man full of love, and Em is a passionate, fun-loving woman giddy to be married to Conor! Their sense of togetherness was sooo appealing. Hard to put into words, but there is a special peace about them that makes everyone feel like all is right in the world.

Both Conor and Em are extremely creative beings, and they understand what it means to create lasting moments. Their wedding ceremony was no exception. Through their obvious love for one another and their ability to navigate the stage with ease and laughter, everyone left inspired by their vows to “survive life together.” 


From Em’s vows:


From Conor’s vows:



This wedding was a celebration of a truly beautiful relationship and a marriage that will last forever. In addition, there were so many little details from the wedding that made it truly special. 

Friends and family came together before the wedding to help set the stage and make this day extra special. The bride and her friends made the bouquets and boutonnieres. Others helped with setting the tables, placing the flower arrangements, and creating the setting. Below are some of the beautiful moments from the wedding that’ll never be forgotten!


4 Beautiful Moments from the Wedding

The Bride in the Cabin before the Wedding


Prior to the wedding, Em and her bridesmaids got ready in the beautiful cabin home of Conor’s parents, Luke and Jodi Monte, which was literally steps from where they would be married. The smell of natural pine and flowers filled the home as they dressed their jubilant dear friend for her marriage to her future husband. Bodies filled the chairs of the dining room, flowers and gowns covered the tables, and laughter of course was present! 

Describing it as “a place of serenity,” Em had actually been the one to ask Conor’s parents if they could have the wedding at the cabin. I can only imagine that every time Conor and Em come to visit their family at the cabin, how the memories will come rushing back and these moments will be re-lived. 

It’s quite possible that one day, even Conor and Em’s children will get to experience the cabin as well. I can see it now! I see their daughter having a pancake breakfast with bacon and eggs at the same table her mother and her bridesmaids sat around as they got ready. Oh, and I see their son looking into the same mirror Em used to put her makeup on, saying, “I want to be like Daddy when I grow up!”  

Maybe more weddings should happen at family cabins. Cabins provide a place where layers of memories can occur. I’m sure for Luke and Jodi, this is exactly what they hoped for when they built this cabin on the property their family had used to gather together for more than 50 years!  

The Breaking of the Glass


In the wedding ceremony, Conor and Em incorporated the ancient wedding tradition called “The Breaking of the Glass.” It is symbolic of never going back, as the breaking of the glass is irrevocable and permanent. As they each stomped on a separate glass, shattering them into thousands of tiny pieces, they were declaring, “May our bond of love be as difficult to break as it would be to put together the pieces of this glass.” It was an absolutely beautiful picture of their undying commitment and covenant with one another.

Even The Confetti was Special


I mentioned that Conor and Em are super creative human beings, right? Their homemade confetti is a perfect example! The couple gathered fall leaves from the places each of them like to call home, The Adirondacks in upstate New York and Jersey City, NJ. They took the leaves and used a hole-puncher to create the confetti that their friends and family would shower them in as walked down the aisle after being pronounced “married” – symbolizing rain, which is said to be a sign of prosperity, fertility, and good fortune in the days to come.

The Festivities at the Cabin


After the wedding, it was time to party. Stories came to life around the campfire, and more and more laughter filled the air. People danced into the night in tents nestled between the forest and the cabin. And the stars had never burned brighter than they did that night as the day came to an end and we, along with all the creatures of the forest witnessed… The Perfect Wedding Day at the Cabin.

As they drove off that night, I realized my duty for the day was complete. It just happened to be one of the most joyful weddings ever. But again, I had a lot of help – the guests were amazing, and the Monte family knows how to do it right.


Mr. and Mrs. Monte – May you forever be.



Riverwood Cabin

All photos of the wedding courtesy of National Geographic Photographer, Sean Madden: Website | Instagram

For more information about this cabin, check out our namesake model: The Riverwood.

Riverwood Cabins

About Riverwood Cabins

Riverwood Cabins builds remarkable log cabins where families and friends can pursue their passions and make memories together. All of our cabins are built in a controlled environment, delivered nationwide, and can be set up in as little as 1-2 weeks! With 5 models and more than 80 floor plans to choose from, we can help you customize a cabin that your family and friends will enjoy for years to come.

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