Nadia & Jeremy approached me way back in the early summer to chat about what we could all do together to capture their engagement session and upcoming wedding date.
At the time, while we attended the same church we didn’t, yet, know each other that well. Most likely because I’m an introverted extrovert (true story) and we sit on opposite sides of church, but I am so so glad they didn’t shy away from my shyness because they have become dear friends!
And things have a funny way of happening. After our initial meeting they booked me for their engagement session. Nadia and I immediately set out and spent so much time planning their session, mostly over cups of coffee on my living room couch while kids crawled all over us. There was location scouting to her sending me all the pictures of her gowns she was planning on wearing, talking about her bouquet and just general excitement from both of us knowing how beautiful this was going to turn out. And then, as the day approached and in very unlikely Arizona fashion, rain. SO.MUCH.RAIN. So much so that we had to reschedule their date.
I remember what happened next like it was yesterday. I went to check my phone and I had a text from Nadia that read “I had this wild idea that I’d like to share with you, can you chat now” and I immediately thought *gasp* omgosh WHAT could this be?!
So, we get on the phone and she tells me how she had this crazy idea that instead of just having an engagement session, what if instead, they eloped! I remember being totally silent as I soaked it in and then “YES!” So, with just a couple weeks we all got to planning their elopement adventure.
Now, the biggest deal about all of this was that they would be blending their families together and they were going to keep this a secret from their kids, so we had to strategically plan the entire day as an elopement disguised as family pictures.
The day comes and guys, it’s the first perfect fall day here in Arizona. The sun is shining, there is a cool breeze and Papago is beautiful. I arrive at the location that Nadia and I picked out and start to scope out some more locations for family pictures and bridals.
Nadia arrives and I start with capturing images of her bouquet as I quickly see Jeremy arriving. We had two outfits to work with on this day so we started with their first outfits and they shared some sweet moments together with the excitement of it all!
Up next, Pastor Andy arrived! I pointed out the location of the ceremony and he heads off there to wait in his car – like a saint – for over an hour to not blow the cover for the kids who know him!
We finish up with their first outfit and then head over to our ceremony location where Nadia and Jeremy planned to change into their wedding attire and do a first look. Guys. First looks are so amazing! I can’t even begin to tell you how excited they both were to see each other in their suit and gown for the day. Even better was witnessing the sweet intimate moment they shared while embracing one another during this time – it is such a beautiful moment!
Cut to omgosh the kids are HERE! So, I quickly rush down the hill and tell the kids where to go to wait for us to finish up Mom and Dad pictures and we head on down and tell the kids that we are going to capture a few family pictures. I put everyone in location, capture a few family pictures and show everyone and then bring Nadia and Jeremy in front of the kiddos as a set up. Then, as a surprise I get Pastor Andy out of his car and he walks up to all of us nonchalantly as the kids are already starting to wonder what in the world is happening, and he announces to everyone, “well, what are we all doing here? I guess it’s probably a good idea since we’re all here to just go ahead and get married!!”
The faces of their children were the best I’ve ever seen! Immediate shock and excitement – and being completely honest it took everything in me to not break down into tears, even as I write this I’m getting choked up thinking about how happy and excited they were!
The rest is history – yesterday, on 11//11, Nadia and Jeremy became one and blended their families into “finally family” like Mia said!
Nadia and Jeremy, you both are so loved and blessed. Thank you for letting me be part of such an absolutely beautiful, special, exciting day! Thank you for letting me tell your story, I hope I’ve done it the justice it so deserves!
Love you guys!