Tag Archives: wedding

Thad & Kathy’s Wedding

I have photographed six weddings. I have known all of the couples prior to their wedding day, but three of them in particular, I’m fortunate enough to call family. (If you’re reading this Heather Barry and Brian Stevens I’m talking about you!)

I would like to introduce you to Thad and Kathy. You have already met them in a previous blog when I posted their amazing engagement photos. I’m fortunate enough to call them family, because Kathy is my hubby’s aunt.

This lovely and intimate ceremony was held in my in-law’s backyard. They always keep their yard beautifully landscaped. With the addition of chandeliers hanging from the trees and chairs for the guests, it transformed into the perfect garden ceremony. If you remember, we had a lot of rain last year. This day was no exception! Thankfully, it only drizzled rain during the ceremony and the best man’s wife was kind enough to let me stand under her umbrella-ella-ella-eh-eh. Sorry, I couldn’t miss that opportunity! Don’t they say rain on a wedding day is good luck though?

Thad is the sweetest man I’ve ever met in my life! Well, aside from Shannon’s Papaw ūüôā Speaking of Papaw, those suspenders were in honor of him! We are all very, very happy to have Thad as part of this crazy and fun family. He’s also the most photogenic man I’ve ever worked with! I mean, check out those photos below! I’ve never seen Kathy as happy as she is with him. He treats her like a queen. If you’ve spent any time with this couple, I’m sure you’ve heard him refer to her as “queen.” They were truly destined to be together and it was an honor to be a part of their special day.

This day had a little extra special meaning to hubby and I. Thad and Kathy picked June 15 to be their wedding day. That day also happens to be the dating anniversary of Shannon and I. We celebrated 16 years strong that day, so we know it’ll bring just as much joy and love to the newlyweds.

I want to point out some superstars from the day! Kathy’s sister, Robin, is my mother-in-law. She not only hosted the wedding in her backyard, but also decorated the reception hall, made Kathy’s beautiful bouquet, and served as Matron of Honor in the ceremony. Kathy’s niece, Ashley, is my sis-in-law. She designed the beautiful flower head piece Kathy wore in her hair. My amazing hubby, Shannon, set up the speakers for the ceremony, helped me take some photographs during the ceremony, and made the photo slideshow for the reception. Lastly, I want to recognize how amazing all of the speeches were at the reception. Robin, Butch (the best man), and Cody (Kathy’s son) all gave very funny, creative, and sentimental speeches.

I’m honored to finally introduce Mr. and Mrs. Cetinich! Wishing you both a forever of happiness!

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Happy Birthday Tzina!!!!

Today is the birthday of one of my longtime friends, Tzina! ¬†Her and I met in the 9th grade. ¬†We were chair partners in orchestra, twirled on the flag corps, and shared the honor of being on Homecoming court together. ¬†Those were just a few of our memorable times together! Since we grew up during the ancient times of film photography, most of the photos I have to share from back then aren’t good quality, but they are still so precious to me. ¬†I also had a hard time finding our high school photos since they are scattered between photo albums and scrapbooks. ¬†Here’s some of my favorites though…

Unfortunately for me, Tzina has moved back to Greece where she is originally from. ¬†We are actually terrible at catching up with each other via Skype, but when we do find the time to chat it’s like we’ve never missed a beat with each other. ¬†Thank goodness for Facebook though, because it always keeps us updated with each other’s lives.

This past summer, Shannon and I were so fortunate to be able to travel over to Greece for Tzina’s wedding! ¬†I don’t think any vacation we ever take will top that one! ¬†Not only was Greece amazing, but we were able to reconnect with several high school friends, and watch our first traditional Greek wedding. ¬†I knew by seeing photos of Tzina, that she looked and felt amazing to be back in Greece, but when I physically got there with her, she radiated happiness! ¬†I mean, of course she was ecstatic that she was getting married and so many old friends had travelled from all over the world to share her special day. ¬†Even though I miss her terribly, I would never want her to move back to the US ¬†after seeing how complete her life is now in Greece.

I wanted to share some of her amazing wedding stories and photos! ¬†First of all, we were warned that it would be a long day! ¬†The girls and I started our day around 9:00. ¬†We had breakfast and headed to the hair salon. ¬†Tzina’s wedding hair was the most intricate masterpiece I’ve ever seen! ¬†After everyone finished at the salon, we put on summer dresses and headed to Tzina’s parents home for the start of the ceremonies. ¬†Tzina lives in a village called Florina. ¬†It was quite a rural drive to get to the house, which sat high up on a hill. ¬†When we arrived, the wedding photographers immediately wanted some fun shots of all us girls together. ¬†I had no idea we would be asked to be in photos like that! ¬†It was so fun! ¬†There was a fully catered meal and also a live band, so we enjoyed that for a while. ¬†I’ve been watching Tzina, and our other Greek friend, Christina, do traditional Greek dances since I’ve known them, but watching her with her family on her wedding day was so awesome. ¬†The music and food continued for the guests, but all of us girls had to go inside and not only get our wedding clothes on, but also help Tzina get into hers. ¬†Once she was dressed, she was escorted and presented to her father. ¬†More dancing occurred and then we made the trip down the hill to the church. ¬†The church was absolutely beautiful! ¬†It was also very significant to Tzina, because her parents and grandparents had been married there too. ¬†This part of the ceremony was my favorite! ¬†Talk about being a show stopper on your wedding day! ¬†The street is shut down and lined with people. ¬†Some of these people are wedding guests, but most of the ones on the street are just bystanders taking in the beauty of yet another wedding. ¬†There was a band in front of Tzina and anyone who wanted to, could walk behind her through the street and up the stairs to the church where the handsome groom was awaiting her arrival. ¬†At this point, Tzina asked me to help carry her veil behind her as she walked and I was so honored to do this! ¬†Definitely my most memorable part of the ceremony! ¬†Once inside of the church the ceremony lasted about an hour. ¬†Even though we couldn’t understand much of what was spoken, just watching all of the rituals was so neat and beautiful.

Now, let’s talk about the reception! ¬†Those Greeks really know how to party! ¬†I believe there were between 500-600 guests at the reception! ¬†We had another deliciously catered meal and watched more traditional Greek dancing. ¬†Some of the dances can easily be picked up if anyone ever wanted to jump in and join the fun. ¬†Shannon and I choose to sit back, relax, and just take it all in. ¬†I think Shannon and I threw the towel in around 2:00 AM and headed back to the hotel. ¬†The party was still going strong though! ¬†Tzina said they finally left around 4:00 AM. ¬†I guess it’s typical for a Greek reception to last until 6:00 AM. ¬†I told you they know how to party! ¬†My favorite memory from the reception was Tzina and her hubby dancing in a pan of beer!

The day after the wedding was so great, because we spent the entire day with Tzina.  We met for lunch, which lasted hours, because we finally had time to catch up on everything.  Then, Tzina walked us through the village, which was so pretty.  There were so many cute shops, but they were all closed since it was Sunday.  We got to see their new flat, which was beautiful.  It just was so great to spend quality time together!

Saying goodbye to Tzina that night was so hard! ¬†Those three days we spent in Florina will always be some of my most treasured memories. ¬†I remember I kept telling Shannon how amazing it felt to be with people that really know you. ¬†People that have been a part of your life for more than a decade. ¬†You’ve grown from children to women together, seen the good, bad,and ugly, and yet still love each other.

Tzina will be welcoming her own little Greek Goddess into the world in March! ¬†She has been dreaming of being a mother since we were teenagers in orchestra class together, so I couldn’t be happier for her! ¬†She will make an amazing mother, and I can’t even fathom how beautiful this little girl is going to be.

Happy birthday Tzina! ¬†I love and miss you! ¬†Can’t wait for all the excitement this year holds for you! ¬†xoxo

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A Grandpa’s Love…

Today is my Grandpa’s birthday!! ¬†He doesn’t even own a computer, so he’ll never see this post, but that’s ok. ¬†We went home to Mansfield over the weekend to see him since I’ll only be able to talk to him on the phone today. ¬†It makes me very sad that we aren’t closer distance wise anymore. ¬†You see, my mom and I lived across the street from my Grandma and Grandpa. ¬†I literally saw them everyday of my ¬†life. ¬†When my Grandma passed away, I even moved in with him for about a year. ¬†When I finally moved back in with my mom, Shannon, who was just my awesome boyfriend back then, stayed the night with him every Friday and Saturday for about six months.

When we visited with him Saturday, he was telling us how he’ll occasionally stop into this ice cream shop and get a cone and eat it in the car. ¬†My heart was literally broken hearing that. ¬†Even though we are only one hour away from each other, it’s just too far to swing by and have ice cream together. ¬†Which, when I was younger, we ate almost every night together. ¬†Needless to say, he was my father figure. ¬†If you have read “meet the sevens” on the website, you already know that we were married on my grandparents wedding anniversary, and my Grandpa gave me away. ¬†I wanted to share a couple of my favorite photos from that special day. ¬†My favorite is the one of us on the horse and carriage. ¬†Doesn’t he look like Johnny Cash and Elvis! ¬†I love it! ¬†Since he gave me away, we had the whole carriage ride into the ceremony to be alone, and of course we talked about Grandma. ¬†It was a very special moment for us. ¬†The photo of us dancing was during the “father-daughter” dance. ¬†I chose, Grandpa, tell me ’bout the good old days, by the Judds. ¬†Yet another very special moment for us where once again we talked some about Grandma.

Even though I’m only 30, my Grandpa is the only grandparent I have left. ¬†I don’t like this reality. ¬†He just recently won a battle against cancer. ¬†Which is great that he’s currently cancer free, but also makes it even more apparent that our time together will eventually come to an end.

Recently, one of my good friends lost her Grandpa. ¬†He lived to be 90 years old, which is amazing, but anyone who has lost someone close to them knows that no matter the age or circumstance, it’s never easy to say goodbye. ¬†He also was able to attend her wedding, which is a great memory for her to have. ¬†I wanted to share my favorite photo from her special day in honor of her Grandpa. ¬†Aren’t those smiles contagious! ¬†RIP Bob Huston

For the record, I don’t intend to be Debbie downer when I write personal blogs. ¬†I do, however, want anyone fortunate enough to have Grandparents to realize how precious time is with them. ¬†Maybe you live too far away to see them often, but a phone call, email, letter, or whatever form of communication your Grandparent can use, will make their day. ¬†If you live close enough to have an ice cream date together, that is what I would do! ¬†I ordered that photo above on a plaque for my friend. ¬†Below the photo, I put a quote, “A Grandpa is someone you never outgrow your need for…” ¬†On that note, I’m going to call my own and see how his birthday is going!

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