This bride and groom made sure to include us all in their journey. From how they met, to how they picked their venue so early on, they incorporated so much of their story into their big day. I think my favorite part of doing my job is making sure that story lives on.
Walking the streets of Denver during the pre-wedding festivities, I was glad I decided to go ahead and take my camera out and about. I debated against it since I knew the actual venue wasn’t in the city, but definitely a good choice. Some of the wedding party was already in town, which made for a great meal downtown and great fun in the best little candy store (where I of course picked up props for portraits) before heading out to Lookout Mountain Park. I was pretty fascinated that Buffalo Bill’s gravesite was there, and I’m pretty sure he’s got one of the best gravesite views- if that’s a thing.
Next was some good ol’ girl time! Getting to not only tag along on the party with the bridesmaids, but get my nails done too was beyond exciting for me. I have gotten my nails done a handful of times in my life *(no, I don’t count being a project in Beauty School!) so I felt pampered, to say the least. There was a shower for Melissa which was full of laughter and hysterical gifts that included but was definitely not limited to the most amazing onesie I’ve ever seen! Then ending with an improv comedy show had me feeling like I was only here for vacation.
Even once the wedding day began, I had seen how much prep work the family and friends had put into everything over the previous days that I knew it would be smooth sailing. I styled hair before we all headed to the venue, and once we were there I couldn’t wait to get started! The Evergreen Lake House is so picturesque, it’s not shocking that they joked about it being a great place to get married before they were ever engaged. And it’s booked so far in advance, the fact that they had an opening just seemed to perfect to pass up, and I’m so glad they landed it. Aaron and Melissa both have music backgrounds, so it was only fitting that students of Aaron’s played beautiful music for the processional.
The bridesmaids had the sweetest thing to carry down the aisle. Instead of a bouquet, they each received a Bible from Melissa and a carried their flower on top of it.
Everyone knows I am a sucker for seeing new things at a wedding, so this was a bonus.
Next came the flower girls pulling the most adorable ring bearer in a little red wagon that read “ring security” on the back. I had grown to love these families in the short time I spent with them, and so during the ceremony when they joined hands to pray over the start of their new life together- I found myself tearing up in the corner.
What didn’t help (I mean that in the best way) was Melissa’s sister singing to them during their unity candle lighting. I’m such a mush! I love that I haven’t become desensitized to weddings. Each one is so precious and if anything I just love my job more when I witness two people who truly belong together say their vows and become one.
Enough sappy talk though- let’s get to the celebration. Ohhh and the pizza. BeauJo’s left a mark in my life, and I have been to Chicago and Manhattan to eat my way through those pizza cities. It was special to Melissa and Aaron, so they made sure to explain the use of the honey as dipping sauce for the crust. I hardly eat crust *(which makes my husband happy for an extra side meal) but I made an exception for this dish. Worth it. We got to hear touching speeches, and watch a slideshow that showed just how family centered these two are.
Cutting the cake, having ice cream, throwing the bouquet and garter all seemed to go by too fast. We made sure to get a picture of the bride and groom with the couple who helped “encourage” them to meet (um, good thinking Erin and Isaac!!) and then lined up to send them on their exit.
These two were far from done. We had a plan to save portraits until after so we could drive a bit and get some of God’s incredible work around Evergreen. From forest and fields, to the Evergreen Dam, to the Red Rocks Amphitheater these two were troopers as I huffed and puffed my way up hills and up out of brush.
Did I forget to mention that I forgot about the altitude difference? My oh my. Doubt they could understand my posing direction by the end- but just in time (before I keeled over from lack of oxygen) God opened up the skies and the most incredible downpour began to fall.
I think He knew I would never stop photographing them unless He intervened 😉
Happy Anniversary Melissa and Aaron!