Jennifer & Kelly | Virginia is for Lovers

If you’re following my blog, chances are you’re following my Instastories.

and I’m okay with that.

Actually, I’m more than okay with it. I prefer to get as personal as I can with my social media so I can take you all along the journey with me.

Some days that journey is taking 7th street into downtown Austin, sitting at the Driskill and enjoying the ambience while I am editing a wedding.

Some days that journey is taking Connor down South Congress for a smoothie at Juice… or to the Austin Library that we love so much.

And some days, that journey is hopping on a plane to go capture some of the most important moments in people’s lives. And if you’ve been following along- you know my favorite part is a long layover, a big latte and a good book. (even if I’ll never finish it) 

The best part about flying out to a couple that already feels like family? It makes that “layover” feeling last a bit longer. I can relax, enjoy my coffee and book and know that they are okay with me handling everything in the photo department on the wedding day. 

If you haven’t seen their engagement session? You might want to do that first to thoroughly enjoy the rest of this.

Because guess. what. y’all.

They added the National Cathedral into their timeline for their wedding day! 

I could not have been more excited to read it on the timeline while I packed the day before. (If you think I’m going to remember a timeline if I read it more than a day or two before? you’d be more than wrong, if that’s even possible)

So I woke up to the quaintest little AirBnB on the day of pumped for their photos to start. The AirBnB would’ve received a much different review had I only seen it the night before. Pulling up on a dark dirt road to what could be a haunted farm house, where the cell service cuts off immediately once you cross the threshold, not exaggerating, I guess it was whatever the house was built out of? Brick? Steel? Silicon Carbide? *(okay that last one is a joke. but me without reception and the ability to FaceTime while I’m traveling is a serious matter.) 

Not shocked to find the entire family and their friends all working in and around the venue property as I pulled up and did my walk around. They were trimming trees, hedges, making signs, fixing breakfast, table settings, hemming pants and so much more. And all your heard from everyone was “what else can I do to help? … that’s good people.

And go look at where they got ready… Stunning, right?? Well getting all of these helpful people out of the house on time was a whole different ballgame.

If we were going to drive to DC, take photos and then make it back in time for the ceremony- I had to be, well… myself. When it comes to timelines I love being ahead of schedule. If I can get an entire wedding party done with photos and back cooling off (or warming up during those winter weddings) before the ceremony starts, it’s a more relaxed wedding day and I’m all about that.

There is already another blog about wedding ceremony timelines coming at ya soon, so stay tuned for that one 😉

This poor group of guys got stuck with me getting them out the door of the mansion, into all of the appropriate cars all while sounding like a drill sergeant, and then still had to bear with my absolutely-no-phone-while-driving-me-around policy. Most (if not all?) of them were law enforcement, so they are much more inclined to be enforcing the rules. Not being told what to do by a crazy (or let’s say passionate) photographer. And guess what? They handled it like gentlemen and I couldn’t be more grateful.

Because we also knew that rain was on it’s way.

Y’all know I don’t shy away from rain on a wedding day, engagement session, anything. And neither did this group. We were miraculously able to pull off a first look at the National Cathedral, all the wedding party photos, and a few more wedding portraits before it started to rain!

We got back in time to let everyone get touched up before the ceremony… and what happened during the ceremony moved my love-loving heart.

Right as the processional started, the clouds opened back up and let the rain pour. And you know what happened? The wedding. The same beautiful outdoor wedding, with the guests smiling and focused in on why they were there. You don’t go to weddings just to look good and show off a new outfit. You don’t go to weddings just to have a reason to get your hair or makeup done. Those are a bonus in life– and a wonderful part of celebrating a special occasion. But you are there to support a couple starting a marriage. You’re there to celebrate the start of a long journey for two people that you know and love.

And that can happen regardless of the weather.

RIGHT when they said I do? Sunshine. Immediate sunshine paired with a double rainbow and the best celebration you could ask for.

After taking some fun family and wedding party photos, I got to walk with Jen & Kelly around the edges of the property for one of the most romantic golden hours. I mean, we walked out past an apple tree, sun dripping in over the hills, with a glorious amount of field behind us to top it off. How happy do you think I was? 

So happy that even with a pretty bad foot injury, my sneakers being soaked thoroughly (and didn’t dry until the next day!) all I could think about was how lucky I was to be out there capturing this day for them.

We all ate under the clear skies full of rainbows, watched a beautiful Virginia sunset and listened to some great love and life through speeches about the newlyweds. How’s that for a romantic end to a beautiful day? I love listening to heartfelt speeches, so I loved seeing Jen get up and talk to the guests about her family and how Kelly would fit into her life exactly how God planned.

Even their cake topper was a perfect tribute to their lives together as police officers… and of course they had to have a billion amazing options for desserts when I am trying to stay away from sugar! I mean, I forgave them considering they danced under the stars, had an amazing DJ and planner (sisters that I am pretty sure should now go into the wedding business… okay Mena & Sarika??) and had a bear head that joined the party just as I was ending my night.

I had so much fun I *almost* forgot to bring them out for a night shot… but we all know I wouldn’t have let that slide. We got it done, partied the rest of the night, I may or may not have ended up with the aforementioned giant bear mask on my head, and I was able to hang out with the family and their giant pups the next day while uploading before flying back home.

Thankful to call these people my friends. Congrats, Mr. & Mrs. Markley! I can’t wait to get back up there.



3 thoughts on “Jennifer & Kelly | Virginia is for Lovers

  1. WOWZA! Love love love this DC and Virginia wedding. The National Cathedral photos are pretty epic. And a a double rainbow for bride and groom portraits – could that be any more perfect? I also loved the first few shots with the apply tree, it sets the perfect Virginia backdrop for their day.


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