Tag archive for : intimate wedding

There’s a lot of talk at weddings where “two become one,” and “a new family is born.” Sometimes, though, the wedding just formalizes what everyone there already knows to be true. Two became one long ago. The deep love, the every day love, the for better or worse love, the wedding vow love? Lia and Joe have been living that commitment to each other for a while now. In fact, their bond is so deep and strong, it’s personified in the heart and soul of their sweet daughter Eliana. Two, as it turns out, have already become three.

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The wedding day was truly the icing on the cake. (I’ll get to the cake- the yummy, yummy cake- in a minute.) It was a day to stand up, and say, “You. I choose you. You are the one I honor with my love.”

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I will NEVER get tired of seeing the look on the excited groom’s face when he sees his bride in her wedding dress. This will never get old.

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After a few minutes, Lia and Joe’s family came out to the gazebo and we took some group photos.

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My favorites, though, were with Eliana!

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Such a cutie patootie!

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We got through all the posed photos, and then it was time to go down the aisle!

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The ceremony was personal and loving, with a few sincere prayers and the exchange of rings.

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The newlyweds kissed, and then Joe swept Lia into a romantic dip. (Lia, you lucky girl.)

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They walked down the aisle with their sweet Eliana, and it was time to get the party started.

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Well, first, the paperwork got signed, and THEN the celebration started (with shots!)

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What struck me during the first dance was the way Lia and Joe held each other close with their new wedding rings on their hands. She rested her hand on his chest…

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…and he placed his hand on her waist.

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Joe had tears of happiness in his eyes as he danced with both of his best girls.

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Then, Eliana decided it was time for some twirling.

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I knew it was going to be an amazing party when a conga line started in the first dance set.

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I loved this moment with Lia flashing her bling. On our wedding day, when your ring feels so new and just a little foreign on your hand, you just want to look at it and smile.

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Flossing…

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and selfies!

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Joe cracked up as his best man Alantz gave his toast, and then Lia’s sister offered her heartfelt best wishes.

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So many cute kids at this wedding!

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I love Lia’s smile here. This is the way you smile when your favorite person in the world has walked up behind you.

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Okay, I promised I would talk about the cake. It was to die for, and best of all, it was a gift from a dear friend. (I had a piece of the red velvet layer. It makes me want to make a special trip to the Cakery in Fishkill. It was the kind of red velvet you happily drive an hour for, is all I’m saying.)

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The rest of the reception passed in the blink of an eye.

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You KNOW it’s an amazing party when guests fall asleep on the table!

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Congratulations, Lia, Joe and Eliana! Thank you for letting me be with you on your best day ever!

Filled Under : Wedding

Do you know what my first serious high school boyfriend, random Googlers from the Internet, college friends and the real estate agent who sold Joel and me our first home have in common? They have all trusted me with their wedding memories! I was so happy to be able to be there for John and Jennifer (real estate guru extraordinaire) last weekend at the Overlook Lodge at Bear Mountain.

It was a small wedding with only the couple’s nearest and dearest in attendance. The bride and groom were so happy to have found each other, to have a new happy ending (or should I say beginning?_, to celebrate with their parents, their children, their siblings and the friends who have stood by them through thick and thin.

Although I love my big weddings with all the trimmings, the fog machines and the Viennese hours and the raucous dance parties… Well, ok, actually, this dance floor was pretty wild. Someone may have broken an ankle. (I hope she’s alright!) Oh, weddings- anything can and will happen! But this wedding was special because it was all about the love these two people have found in each other.

There was a poem read during the ceremony that sums up everything they feel each other, that really touched by heart, so I am going to share it here.

“It doesn’t interest me how old you are. I want to know if you will risk looking like a fool for love, for your dream, for the adventure of being alive.

It doesn’t interest me what planets are squaring your moon…I want to know
if you have touched the centre of your own sorrow if you have been opened by life’s betrayals or have become shrivelled and closed from fear of further pain.

I want to know if you can sit with pain mine or your own without moving to hide it or fade it or fix it. I want to know if you can be with joy mine or your own if you can dance with wildness and let the ecstasy fill you to the tips of your fingers and toes without cautioning us to be careful to be realisticto remember the limitations of being human.

It doesn’t interest me if the story you are telling me is true. I want to know if you can disappoint another to be true to yourself. If you can bear the accusation of betrayal and not betray your own soul. If you can be faithless and therefore trustworthy.

I want to know if you can see Beauty even when it is not pretty every day.
And if you can source your own life from its presence.

I want to know if you can live with failure yours and mine and still stand at the edge of the lake and shout to the silver of the full moon,“Yes.”

It doesn’t interest me to know where you live or how much money you have. I want to know if you can get up after the night of grief and despair weary and bruised to the bone and do what needs to be done to feed the children.

It doesn’t interest me who you know or how you came to be here. I want to know if you will stand in the centre of the fire with me and not shrink back.

It doesn’t interest me where or what or with whom you have studied. I want to know what sustains you from the inside when all else falls away.

I want to know if you can be alone with yourself and if you truly like the company you keep in the empty moments.”
-Oriah Mountain Dreamer

Warmest wishes for your happily ever after!

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Filled Under : Wedding

For a couple of years now, I’ve been saying, “October is the new June.” This is one of the most popular times of the year to get married, and it was a pleasure documenting Tiffany and Dariel’s courthouse wedding last Wednesday. I’ve also been jokingly calling the city clerk’s office “the happiest DMV on earth” because it is truly a special place.

It is decidedly DMV-like; I’m not gonna lie. You walk in. You tell a most definitely underpaid attendant who clearly answers the same questions over and over again all day long what you’re there to do, and you get a number. When that number comes up, you go to a booth and fill out paperwork. It’s a little bit like lining up to buy cold cuts, so I did my imitation of this commercial, and only one person in attendance even remotely knew what I was referring to, which was ever so slightly embarrassing for me. Ah, well. It was a happy dance for a happy day.

After you fill out the paperwork, you get a different number and wait again, this time for a chapel. After another wait, which can last five minutes or the better part of an hour, you go into a small chapel and get married in a short ceremony that lasts a maximum of ten minutes from putting down your purse to hugging the last of your witnesses. Yet, all around you, everyone is happy. People are smiling, kissing, taking pictures, mugging at the courthouse photo backdrop set up by the city for that exact purpose, even buying “I got married in NYC” souvenirs.

Last Wednesday, Tiffany and Dariel were among the happiest people there. From the moment Dariel took off his blindfold to see his bride, all through the bureaucratic necessities, during the ceremony itself and then humoring me for photos all around Lower Manhattan (including at the African Memorial Burial Ground- a location no one has ever asked me to shoot before but where we got some very meaningful and artistic pictures), they were smiling ear to ear. A love story that began in the late ’90s when they met right at the beginning of college began a new chapter with married life last week. This couple is so fun, so happy (and so game for whatever might make for awesome photos, which, honestly, is a dream come true for me!) that I am keeping my fingers crossed that I get to be with them at their big bash sometime next year.

For now, congratulations on “getting legal-ed,” Tiffany and Dariel! I hope you enjoy these pictures as much as I enjoyed creating them for you. P.S. The cupcakes were delicious OMG NOM NOM

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Filled Under : Celebration , Wedding

All week long leading up to Jessica and Bryan’s wedding, the weather report spelled DOOM. We were fully expecting the remnants of Hurricane Joaquin to drive the festivities indoors, so I couldn’t have been more pleased when their wedding day turned out to be clearest, crispest autumn day we’d had in Upstate New York this month. The sky was so blue; there wasn’t a cloud in the sky. It could not turned out better for a nicer couple.

This couple is incredibly funny. They both cracked me all day long. Bryan- for all of his sarcastic wit and dark humor- was the one who wept with joy during the ceremony. Jessica poured so much energy and creativity into making this day uniquely personal- from the custom-made cake toppers to the couples’ grand entrance to the Imperial March from Star Wars- there was so doubt exactly whom everyone had gathered to celebrate.

Their humor- often gently and lovingly teasing each other, but never mean- spread amongst their family and friends as the party got going. There were more funny dance-offs, sing-a-longs, and ironic poses with mustaches than I can begin to recount in words. You have to just see for yourself. I am so glad that I got to be with Bryan and Jessica for their wedding! Thank you so much!

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Filled Under : Celebration , Wedding

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