This wedding started out as a photographer's nightmare; I left with 2 solid hours to get to the wedding venue....and got lost. The first time Google Maps ever failed me, and it was essential to arrive on-time. After talking to almost everyone in the wedding party, and meeting the bride's dad at a gas station to follow him the rest of the way, I finally arrived 45 minutes late. I was frazzled, frustrated, and fully prepared to feel the wrath of one pissed-off bride. But what I was greeted with was a warm, sincere, and genuine, "Hi, Kristin!" Laryssa was already standing in the doorway of the bridal room, with a huge smile on her face and bouquet in hand. She gave me a hug to welcome me, and calmly asked, "Do you mind if we just get right into shooting the photos now"? I was amazed. I was gifted with grace I didn't deserve, from Laryssa and Stephen (who could have rightly been furious), and everyone there waiting on me to arrive . Thank you, Jesus! And a HUGE thank you to the bride and groom. After the rough arrival, the rest of the day was absolutely gorgeous -- we lucked out with no rain (and even a blue, clear sky in the late afternoon!), and comfortably warm weather. Laryssa and Stephen were a dream couple to shoot; on top of their willingness to try various poses, the camera loved them. Laryssa was stunning, her vibrant red hair in soft curls; Stephen was dashing in a classic suit and simple light-blue tie. And the way they interacted was with complete respect and love for one-another. They were the perfect combo of elegance and charm.
After a short and sweet ceremony, an Italian inspired dinner, and one hilarious toast by the Best Man, the party continued late into the night. Family and friends stayed for hours mingling, dancing, and enjoying cocktails until it was time for their exit -- through a path of friends with sparklers, and into a vintage Bentley. Congratulations Stephen and Laryssa -- thank you for being so gracious and kind, and for truly making me feel like a guest on your big day. Here's to many happy and fulfilling years of marriage.