Inside the Travel-Themed Wedding of an MS Warrior Turned Van-Life Influencer

To live in the moment: It’s an elusive concept that people discuss and desire endlessly, but find profoundly difficult to achieve. But for Lita Talism

To live in the moment: It’s an elusive concept that people discuss and desire endlessly, but find profoundly difficult to achieve. But for Lita Talisman (22, a content creator and travel advisor) and Dylan Regan (28, a senior technology product manager), it’s the embodiment of living life to the fullest.

The couple, who tied the knot on September 17, 2022, recently took their life on the road. They moved into a van to “take control of our lives and seek adventure,” shares Lita. While many people enjoy traveling now and again, Lita and Dylan had a meaningful reason for embracing adventure so wholeheartedly. “In 2018, I was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis, which was incredibly frightening,” shares Lita. “Those first few months were really hard for me, and I felt discouraged. After wallowing in self-pity, I picked myself up and decided that I was going to change my attitude.” Ultimately, she decided to turn her diagnosis into a positive.

“MS has affected my whole outlook on life. I realized that I can’t take any day or my body for granted,” Lita continues. “I wanted my wedding to be a day that I could look back on as one of the happiest of my life. Also, stress can be a huge catalyst for MS symptoms, so I tried to make the wedding planning process easy on myself. Focusing on the big picture really helped.”

The big picture was a travel theme that nods to her home with Dylan. In 2021, the couple converted a van into a tiny home. They set off to travel the country with the goal to see all the states and national parks in the continental US. “We were able to achieve that goal and have been living in our van ever since,” explains Lita. “We wanted to share our love of adventure and travel with our loved ones. So, the theme of our wedding was ‘festive formal adventure.’”

As an ode to the many national parks Lita and Dylan have visited, they used a font inspired by the cursive lettering ubiquitous there for the wedding signage. The couple also created escort cards in the quadrilateral shape of national park signs and gave the invitations the form of a nature field guide. The latter included a map of where they’ve traveled, including Grand Teton, Joshua Tree, Acadia and Arches National Parks. They even brought their van to the wedding, so guests could see the “adventure rig” that carried them so far, including to their biggest adventure yet: marriage. Lita and Dylan say the van was the most important part of the decor. They have built out its living quarters entirely by themselves and wanted to display their hard work at the celebration. Lita and Dylan creatively chose to turn the vehicle into the photo booth for the evening, so everyone could get a taste of the van life.

Although travel to far-flung places inspired the theme, the couple kept the venue close to home. The native Marylanders settled on Goodstone Inn in Middleburg, Virginia, to host their wedding weekend.

To celebrate their Maryland roots, the couple paid homage to the state through their welcome bags. Cookies from Baltimore, crab-spiced Utz chips and Maryland stickers made clear where the couple’s loyalty lies in the playful Maryland-Virginia rivalry. Crab cakes on the menu were yet another homage to their home state.

“We had always sworn that, as Marylanders, we wouldn’t get married in Virginia,” jokes Lita. “But when we saw Goodstone Inn, we fell in love and knew we had to get married there. It was perfect for a weekend full of celebration—especially given our love of the outdoors. We couldn’t have asked for a better setting.”

In addition to celebrating so many varied locales, the couple also looked to their shared Jewish heritage when deciding what was most important to them at the wedding. “Our family and friends are mixed-faith, but we knew we wanted the major Jewish elements and had our rabbi describe them to the group as the ceremony progressed,” explains Lita. “Our rabbi was actually my bat mitzvah tutor back in the day, and she brought my signed bat mitzvah speech out during the ceremony. Everyone thought it was so cute.” Additionally, Dylan’s sister Ali sang a blessing in Hebrew for the ring ceremony. And the couple tapped seven family members to read the seven blessings, an important part of a Jewish wedding.

While the day came together beautifully, Lita shares that balance was critical to bringing it together, especially in light of her MS. “As most people with chronic illnesses know, stress can be really hard on your body and can exacerbate symptoms. If you are ever feeling overwhelmed or stressed, try to lean on your partner. They are there to support you and plan with you. I also recommend setting time specifically for wedding planning and to push it out of your mind as much as possible during other times. That way you can focus on other things.” Lita encourages couples to take a step back and think about the big picture. “It can get so stressful at times, but what really matters is that you and your partner have a great time. All of your loved ones are there for you.”

Bridal Party Portraits With Neutral Bridesmaid Dresses
Simple A-Line Wedding Dress and Romantic Pastel Bouquet
Romantic Illustrated Wedding Itinerary Booklet
Garden Wedding Ceremony Setting at Goodstone Inn in Middleburg, Virginia
Wood Cross-Back Chairs for Ceremony at Goodstone Inn in Middleburg, Virginia
Garden Wedding Ceremony at Goodstone Inn in Middleburg, Virginia
Dylan’s sister, who’s a Broadway singer, sang at the ceremony before the couple recessed to “This Will Be (an Everlasting Love),” by Natalie Cole. Later, a string quartet played pop music during cocktail hour, and at the reception, a live band kept the vibe high all night.
Bride and Groom Portrait During Spring Wedding at Goodstone Inn in Middleburg, Virginia
Cocktail Hour at Goodstone Inn in Middleburg, Virginia
Groom Carrying Bride's Veil During Wedding Portraits
Cocktail Hour Bar at Goodstone Inn in Middleburg, Virginia
Travel-Inspired Escort Cards on Boxwood Display Wall
Poolside Pictures at Goodstone Inn in Middleburg, Virginia
Tented Wedding Reception With Woven Chandeliers
Rustic Chic Wedding Decor With Blue and Brown Accents
Tented Wedding Reception With Farm Tables and Cross-Back Chairs
The reception menu included braised short ribs, sea bass, mushroom risotto and charcuterie. “We also had late-night food, including an ice cream truck and chicken sandwiches,” recalls Lita.
Reception Table With Disposable Cameras
Tented Wedding Reception at Goodstone Inn in Middleburg, Virginia
Van Life Couple Posing in Sprinter Van
Since the couple lives in their van, they haven’t been able to use many of their registry gifts yet. However, one they’re especially excited to unpack is the pizza oven. “The guest who got it for us mentioned how he and his partner have had a pizza night every Friday since they got married, and it’s been an anchor of their marriage.”
Happy Couple Dancing in Field
van-Life Couple Posting With Sprinter Van During Reception
Wedding Guest With Disposable Camera
Bride in Reception Jumpsuit With Feathers
“One special moment was when my twin brother, Max, sang ‘Shut up and Dance.’ Everyone was on the dance floor, and we joined him up on stage. I’ll always remember how much fun we had singing and dancing to that together,” says Lita.