Jon & Stephanie have been married for 10 years, but being a military family has prevented them from hosting the wedding ceremony of their dreams, until August 20, 2022. Jon’s military career in the Army has taken them all over the world, from Germany to the Middle East, and Stephanie traveled with him through it all. Those of us that live in the United States don’t often think about the lives that our military families lead. We are so blessed to have family’s like Jon & Stephanie’s that answer the call to protect our freedoms.
Through the years, they welcomed their daughter’s Anslee and Addyson. In September of 2021, Stephanie contacted me to schedule some family photos while Jon was home during leave from service in the Middle East. I was so excited to provide photos for this family that has sacrificed so much for our country. I have so much respect and admiration for the members of our nation’s military. Anslee and Addyson were (and still are!) two adorable little ones that looked so happy to have their mom and dad together. They hugged and laughed all throughout that session, and I was fortunate to capture those moments for their gallery.
On Saturday, August 20, 2022, I walked into the Paducah Country Club and noticed that Stephanie had a framed photo sitting on their gift table. The table was adorned with beautiful greenery, white flowers, soft fabrics and twinkle lights under a swath of green gossamer fabric. The photo immediately caught my attention as one from their family session. My heart melted, I was so humbled and overjoyed at the same time.
Guests sat at tables surrounding the arbor while watching Jon & Stephanie proclaim their continued commitment to each other. The ceremony began with Anslee and Addyson walking down the aisle, hand in hand, to their Dad standing at the arbor.
Stephanie made her grand entrance wearing an absolutely stunning floor length strapless gown. The fit and flare silhouette was adorned with white lace atop an ivory satin. She chose delicate gold details like the rhinestone clip in her hair, the pear drop earrings and matching necklace. Carrying a fresh flower bouquet, she glided down the aisle to meet her husband. They chose not to see each other prior to the ceremony, and the looks on their faces, as they saw each other for the first time that day, reflected the deep love they share.
Surrounded by friends and family, Jon & Stephanie spoke about the life they’d created together over the past ten years. They shared the memories of living abroad, bringing their children into the world, and how proud they were of all they accomplished. They promised to continue loving and supporting each other, and shared a sweet kiss at the end of their vows. Their smiles were so infectious that I couldn’t stop smiling, myself.
After the conclusion of their ceremony, Jon, Stephanie, and I went outside to take some photos of the two of them. I love the quiet moments after the ceremony, when it’s just the couple and I together. The joy that radiates from the couple photographs beautifully.
The families in attendance enjoyed a delicious meal provided by the caterers at the Paducah Country Club.
After the meal, Jon & Stephanie invited everyone to view the cake cutting. The cake, provided by Karen’s Cake Creations, LLC, was absolutely delicious! Karen is a very talented individual, and I love her cakes as well as her personality! Before jumping ship to cake making, Karen did photography for a short time. She photographed my own wedding, and I cherish the photos she captured.
Photographing the cake cutting was my last event of the evening. The party continued well after my departure, and I’m sure they created many new and lasting memories. I am so thankful for Jon & Stephanie, not only for hiring me to photograph their vow renewal, but for their service to our country. May God continue to bless your marriage and your lives!
Thank you, Jon & Stephanie, for allowing me to be a part of your special day! I am forever grateful to you both!
Cory & Amanda
I met Cory & Amanda in 2020 in preparation of their wedding day on October 24th. They hired me to capture their Disney themed ceremony and reception. I loved every detail they planned, from the white pumpkins lining the aisle to the tiny carriage the flower girl rode. Amanda’s dress was straight out of a fairy tale, and she looked stunning. Cory’s smile showed how much he loves his wife, and I have very fond memories of their big day.
Several weeks ago, I posted the news that I had access to a sunflower field. Soon after, Amanda contacted me to schedule her maternity session at that special location. They are expecting a baby girl, Alaina Leia, near the end of August, and I loved capturing some photos of this special moment in life.
I’ve always loved the hours leading up to sunset, even as a kid. I called it magic hour, not knowing that it had a different special name. Golden hour, as I now know it, is a magical time for outdoor photographers like myself. That beautiful glow around a landscape can make everything look stunning. Amanda and Cory’s glow as new parents were amplified by the landscape surrounding them. The multitude of sunflowers surrounding us almost looked like a bright, golden ocean. Swimming around the edges, we started with a set showing off Amanda’s adorable bump with an opened button-up shirt. She thought it was the shirt Cory wore at their wedding, how sweet is that?!
After our first set, Amanda changed into this gorgeous sunflower dress. I couldn’t imagine a more perfect dress to wear to a sunflower field. Complete with beautifully long, curled hair, Amanda perfectly personified a proud mother-to-be.
I let Cory take a break for a set, and captured these images of Amanda by herself amongst the flowers.
My cousin cleared out a space for Cory & Amanda to sit in the middle of some flowers. I love how these turned out.
For our next set, Amanda changed into another perfect outfit. This yellow dress with green cardigan perfectly mirrored the colors surrounding us. We chose a different section of field that was in a different type of light. I love how soft and dreamy these images look.
Bringing the session to a close, we did one last walking and dancing set. With everything beautifully lit, as the sun slid behind some cloud cover, Cory danced with his beautiful wife. It brought back the memories of their wedding day, watching them twirl on the dance floor. With that same look in his eyes on his wedding day, I captured the last images of the evening.
I want to give a HUGE shout out to my cousins, Brock and Kimberly, for allowing us to use their land and planting the sunflowers. I’m also extremely grateful to their son, Nathan, who helped by holding reflectors (even when his arms started hurting) and carrying things back and forth. Thank you so much!
Danny & Jamie
July 8, 2022
Danny & Jamie’s day began long before I arrived at their house. She spent several hours getting ready with the help of Ellen and Summer,
and when I arrived at 1:10, things were right on schedule.
This was the first wedding day where I played a role in creating the timeline. I was so happy I was able to help keep things in motion, and for the first time in the history of our business, the wedding started 2 minutes early!
We arrived at the church shortly after 2:00pm, where Jamie was helped into her wedding dress and we began taking pictures at the altar. Jamie and her two girls were beautiful! They received a very special gift from their mom, a beautiful pearl bracelet that matched their momma’s.
Adorned with elegant tiara, matching white dresses, and their brand new bracelets, Kylie and Chloe looked like little angels.
With friends and family next to her, Jamie stepped into a dress with a gorgeous ball gown style silhouette, open back, illusion straps, and plunged v-neck.
Embellished with sequins, jewels and lace, this beautiful gown made Jamie look stunning! The gorgeous color gracefully highlighted the tan that she had been working hard to obtain.
Photos at the altar began with Jamie and her two daughters. The girls, Kylie and Chloe, were quite attached to Momma, and had a hard time sharing her with the rest of the group. With a little bit of help from relatives, the girls were able to calm down enough to grab some adorable shots of the three of them.
Danny & Jamie decided to not see each other prior to the ceremony, so we took all the photos we could beforehand, with the rest of them after the ceremony. Danny’s photos prior to the ceremony included his parents and other relatives. The guys had a fun time posing like cute teenage girls for a few of them, haha. We all shared laughs at the funny shenanigans.
We wrapped up pre-ceremony photos around 3:30, just enough time to hide before the guests started to arrive. Steven, my husband and videographer, arrived at 3:30 to begin setting up the cameras to capture their ceremony. Guests began arriving around 3:40 and started sitting at various spots in the church. Danny & Jamie displayed a sign guiding guests to sit where they pleased, and I thought it was a cute touch to the day.
The aisle runner was rolled out, and the music began shortly before 4:00pm. The doors to the church were opened to reveal Jamie’s mom and nephew as he escorted her to the front of the church. Next were Danny’s parents, and finally Jamie.
They saw each other for the first time that day. Their smiles said it all, as he watched her walk down the aisle. His face beamed, and she glowed, you could tell how much they loved each other. Finally face to face, with the girls next to them, they were ready to begin their ceremony and make their vows. For the first ten minutes, I don’t think they took their eyes off each other. After months of planning, the moment they’d been waiting for had finally arrived.
With hands intertwined, the preacher began the ceremony. He welcomed everyone, and thanked them for being there. He read scripture from 1 Corinthians chapter 13, which teaches us about real love. Love is patient, kind, not envious or boastful, it isn’t self seeking or easily angered. Love keeps no record of wrongs, it does not delight in evil, but rejoices with the truth. Love always protects, always trusts, always hopes, and always perseveres. Love never fails.
I have these words framed in my own home, and I love hearing them at wedding ceremonies. Danny & Jamie began their marriage with the reminder of their love for each other, through this verse, and also with the reminder that God loves them, too.
To signify the joining of the family, Danny & Jamie opted to include a sand pouring ceremony. Each member of the family had their own color (blue, white, purple and pink) to pour into a beautiful, framed box with the inscription “Together we make a Family”, Danny, Jamie, Kylie and Chloe, plus their wedding date. I love sand as a representation of marriage. The preacher describes, once the sand is joined together, it is nearly impossible to separate the individual grains. In the same way, marriage binds two people into a union that is difficult to divide.
With the sand ceremony finished, and their vows made to each other, Danny & Jamie were announced as husband and wife. Danny kissed his bride and people clapped, cheered and whistled as the preacher presented Mr and Mrs for the first time. Danny & Jamie looked into each others’ eyes for the first time as husband and wife, and walked back down the aisle, hand in hand with the girls leading the way.
After the conclusion of the ceremony, guests were invited to the reception. Family stayed behind to capture group photos at the altar. I took several of Danny & Jamie together, along with their families. We quickly wrapped up the photos, and headed to the reception area to celebrate the happy couple.
Upon arrival, Danny & Jamie were announced to the guests by the DJ. He did a really great job keeping the music going throughout the party.
Dancing, cake cutting, toasts, bouquet and garter tosses, were the traditions chosen by Danny & Jamie. The first dance as husband and wife lasted only a few minutes before Chloe decided to join them on the dance floor. Mom held her close, as she swayed with her new husband. Kylie watched nearby, and it was the sweetest sight to see as the three of them swayed to the music. Smiles and laughter were plentiful as they moved side to side.
As the evening progressed, Danny & Jamie took time to visit with each table and guest that came to celebrate. I loved capturing photos of the smiles, hugs, and genuine laughter from each interaction.
During sunset, in the blistering heat, Danny & Jamie and I headed outside to capture some artistic photos. The lighting at this time of day is gorgeous, and we had a beautiful sunset to admire. Enduring the miserable heat offered up a well-deserved reward with some stunning golden hour photos that I hope they frame on their walls at home.
As night approached, we started preparing for the grand finale in photos. The guests lined up in a row, and with lighted sparklers, Danny & Jamie walked down a path, hand in hand and shared a beautiful moment in the middle of their friends and family. I got a little creative with the sparklers, and captured some photos that I’m really proud of.
Have you ever watched the original Cinderella? In the cartoon by Walt Disney, when Cinderella’s fairy godmother transforms her shredded and tattered dress into a beautiful ball gown, she is surrounded by magical light. Through my craft, I attempt a recreation of that Cinderella moment, and I can’t imagine a better way to end their magical day.
Charles & Shannon
Saturday, July 2, 2022 Grace Episcopal Church
I met Charles and Shannon shortly after we made the announcement of our photography business. We were newbies to the world of photography, and had beginner equipment. We knew we wanted to succeed, and put everything we had into growing our knowledge, reach and service in our area.
Charles and Shannon were the first couple to take a chance on us when they hired us for their wedding in 2014. We were thrilled! Steven worked on a video while I took photos, and they seemed really pleased with the products. I think about all the mistakes I made that day, but they have stayed with us over the years as we improved and grew.
Fast forward 8 years, and we've learned a lot, upgraded our equipment and provided a gallery that I'm much more happy with than that first gallery all those years ago. During this session, Steven took footage of the session to create our very first commercial!
It's still in the beginning stages, and won't be produced for a while, but we're excited!
We've chosen a lot of different locations for their family sessions, and this time we went to Grace Episcopal Church in Paducah, Kentucky. This is one of my favorite locations to take photos, and you can find a video on my Facebook page featuring a golden hour walk-through.
We want to thank Shannon and Charles, for taking a chance on us way back then and for allowing us to capture your memories for the last eight years. It's been truly an honor to watch your precious family grow. We love getting to see your children grow, and hope you enjoy your gallery!