Around the world in 15 weddings: Couple vow to get married every year
Renewing your vows has taken a bit of a knocking since its most famous advocates, Seal and Heidi Klum, announced their separation.
But newlyweds Susan and Evan Money from California, are sticking to their pledge to get married every single year.
The couple had originally planned to only have one wedding. But after a very romantic one year anniversary, they decided to get married in a different place every year.
First time around: Susan and Evan Money on their first wedding day in July 1997
Susan and Evan's first anniversary wasn’t shaping up to be everything they had hoped it would be as the couple had to work as supervisors on a school trip to France.
But during a rare moment alone in the Gardens of Versailles, Evan, 41, and Susan, 39, spontaneously renewed their vows.
It was so romantic that the couple made another vow to each other – to get ‘remarried’ every year in a different location.
Two and three: Impromptu celebration in rainy Paris and then a romantic kiss in Arizona a year later
Four: The couple opted for a church wedding to celebrate four years as husband and wife
Now, more than a decade – and 15 weddings – into their marriage, Evan and Susan are as in love as ever.
'Evan’s always been a thoughtful, romantic guy – he really is the love of my life. I never thought I’d be as happy as I was on my wedding day,' admits Susan, 'But it turns out – 15 weddings later – I’m even happier than before.'
The couple first met at secondary school, but didn’t hit it off. It was only after a chance meeting in a supermarket five years later in 1996, that they felt an attraction.
'Evan was a bit goofy at school, so I didn’t take any notice of him. But I was bowled over when I bumped into him at a supermarket.
'Dressed in a smart suit, I could tell he’d been working out. It was like he was a different person. I had to do a double take!'
Five: The couple opted for the great outdoors for their sixth ceremony
The pair struck up conversation and exchanged phone numbers. Susan asked Evan out on a date and the relationship sparked from there.
Just a week into their relationship Susan had a gut feeling she’d get married to Evan. And she was right – just 11 months after dating, Evan popped the question.
'He was always the romantic when we dated – he used to drive 20 minutes out of his way during morning rush hour just so he could put a love note under my windscreen wiper! He wrote me poems all the time too.
'But when he turned up at the school I was teaching French in and interrupted my class, my stomach flipped. He asked me to marry him in front of the classroom full of shocked students.
'I said yes straight away, of course!'
Seven: Susan was pregnant when the couple renewed their vows in Cabo, in Mexico
Eight: And baby Joshua joined them at the ceremony the following year
Instead of thinking Evan was being cheesy, Susan lapped up his romantic gestures and hoped he’d stay as creative when they tied the knot.
The couple planned a lavish church wedding for July 1997 with 100 guests, a stunning big gown and eight bridesmaids and ushers.
'I loved planning the wedding. I even ordered bridal magazines on the sly to be delivered at a friend’s house, months before Evan proposed. I then took six months to plan every last details of our big day.'
'I think I was in shock,' admits Evan. 'I knew it was a big deal to Susan – she’d put so much effort into making it the perfect day – and I tried to stay calm and cherish the moment. It was so special.'
'I was beyond excited. It was beautiful, seeing all the details of the day coming together,' adds Susan. 'I wasn’t nervous at all – I was so happy about starting my adventure as Evan’s wife. It was a dream wedding to my dream man – I didn’t want the moment to end.'
Nine: The couple got married in medieval King and Queen costumes in Las Vegas
But, like many newlyweds, Evan and Susan soon experienced a 'come down' after their big day and they were left wondering how they could keep the romance alive in their marriage.
'We’d both seen dysfunctional families and marriages around us – couples who had ended up as housemates on the brink of divorce, rather than married people in love with each other,' explains Susan.
'We desperately didn’t want that,' says Evan. 'There was no “back door” option. We were in this marriage forever and wanted to make sure we’d both be happy in it.'
'So we decided to lead a very intentional, creative and spontaneous lifestyle, where we’d show our love for each other every day,' says Evan.
But passion was off the cards for Evan and Susan when their first wedding anniversary came round – they were supervisors on a school trip to France, in charge of 16 and 17-year-old students.
Ten: After a decade together, Susan and Evan revisited the same church they got married in the first time and had another ‘big day’, with 125 guests and their two children Joshua and Ashley
'We barely got two minutes together, let alone the chance to wine and dine in Paris, arguably the most romantic city on the planet.' says Susan.
But during a visit to the Garden of Versailles, the students were allowed an hour of free time to explore and Evan and Susan had an hour to themselves as well.
'We snuck off and found a pond on a hill all by itself. It was idyllic – the sunshine shimmering through the tree leaves, birds chirping in the distance – we couldn’t have asked for a more romantic setting,' says Evan.
It was then that Evan suggested the couple renewed their vows and got remarried on the spot.
'We couldn’t remember the exact vows,' admits Susan, 'So we just spoke from our hearts and said how we felt about each other, how much we valued our first year of marriage.
Eleven: The couple have married in five different churches and had 11 different pastors lead their marriage ceremonies
'We took off our wedding rings so we could give them to each other again as well. It only took three minutes – the action of renewing our vows and recommitting our lives to one another was so special, it moved me to tears.'
It was such a poignant moment, that the couple decided to get married and renew their vows every year, in a different place.
'We can’t remember whose idea it was originally, but Evan took it on himself to plan every wedding from then on.'
The weddings varied in size and expense. From an airport, to a hot air balloon, the couple have tried to keep the weddings as fun as possible.
Twelve: The couple from California even got married on a ranch in Fort Lauderdale
Evan and Susan have got married on a ranch in Fort Lauderdale, an airport in Portland, a Washington beach, in Cabo, Mexico – where they said the vows in Spanish – in a windmill in Germany and dressed up as king and queen in a Las Vegas hotel.
They’ve got married in five different churches and had 11 different pastors lead their marriage ceremonies.
For their tenth wedding, Evan and Susan revisited the same church they got married in the first time and had another ‘big day’, with 125 guests and their two children Joshua, eight, and Ashley five, as their usher and bridesmaid.
'It was the biggest ceremony we’d had and took six months to prepare,' says Evan. 'It cost as much as the original wedding!
Thirteen: Evan's favourite wedding was this one in Hawaii. He said: 'The look on Susan’s face – she’s just so happy. And that’s what all this is about, making each other deeply happy'
Fourteen: Susan's favourite ceremony was this one. She couldn't stop crying
'But it’s not about extravagance or showing off how happy we are. We just wanted to celebrate our marriage with our friends. We did a talk about what we’ve learned about marriage and people were really impacted by what we had to say.'
After their tenth wedding, Evan and Susan also got married on a beach in Hawaii, in a hot air balloon in Santa Fe, Mexico and in the Bahamas – this time with dolphins as their bridesmaid and usher!
'The wedding with the dolphins was my favourite,' says Susan. 'We had our hands on the dolphins as we said our vows and some sea lions were swimming around too. Being surrounded by such amazing creatures, with my veil on, saying our vows – it really was the most beautiful moment. I couldn’t stop crying!'
Fifteen: Last year Susan and Evan went for a hot air balloon ride in Santa Fe, Mexico
Evan adds: 'My favourite wedding was definitely the one on a beach in Hawaii – our 13th wedding. The look on Susan’s face – she’s just so happy. And that’s what all this is about, making each other deeply happy.'
This year will be wedding number 16 for Evan and Susan, when they renew their vows at half time at an American Football game.
We’ve probably spent upwards of 75,000 on all our weddings,' says Evan. 'But most of our weddings are tied in with a holiday we’ve taken as a couple anyway. Like I say, it’s not about money, it’s about taking action and being creative when it comes to showing love.'
'It’s worth every penny,' says Susan. 'Every wedding is as special as the last. Getting married every year has been the most romantic – albeit expensive – way to celebrate our love!'