When the father of the bride tells you he tucked his daughter in for the last time the night before her wedding, you know you have stumbled upon something special. My latest SDP couple, Carrie and Ryan are just that. Something special-spectacular even. It didn’t take long for me to realize that after meeting them. We didn’t officially meet in person until the day before their wedding, but from our phone calls, emails, and FaceTime chats, I knew that this sweet couple has a spark that goes beyond ordinary. Their love story is one fresh off the pages of Hallmark Channel movie scripts (which if you know me, you know I love a good Hallmark movie)! Anyway, Carrie and Ryan met at Beulah Beach Camp where Carrie was a summer employee and Ryan was a camper. GASP! Yep, she robbed the cradle, but only by a couple of years, LOL. Then, they met up again, only this time both were summer employees. As the two got to know each other, they realized that their meeting was orchestrated by a higher power and that this was a match ordained by God. Due to Ryan and Carrie being in colleges states apart, they had to live miles and miles away from one another for the entirety of their dating season, seeing each other when they could but not as often as they would have liked. And as all Hallmark movies end…a few years later, the two were finally together forever! That’s where I enter stage left.
The Galerie in Versailles, Kentucky was the perfect setting for this couple’s pre-ceremony activities and reception. Ryan and his guys had fun, relaxing and playing pool while Carrie and the ladies shared laughs and dances over snacks in the haze of hairspray. This venue not only has beautiful grounds and indoor spaces, but the people were extremely kind, which fit in quite naturally with the wedding of Carrie and Ryan.
Carrie looked absolutely stunning in her fitted Christina Wu gown, but what was even more captivating was her loving and kind spirit shining through her sweet and genuine smile and every interaction I witnessed. Her hair was pulled back into a beautiful braided style, and her makeup was flawless yet subtle. And let’s talk about that bouquet by The Milam House! WOWZA! Ryan, not to be overshadowed by his gorgeous bride, looked rather dapper in a perfectly tailored blue suit from Generation Tux. Oh, and he was equally kind and loving. I tell you, these two are a couple of the most awesome people I’ve met.
After their sweet first look, we traveled to nearby Buck Run Baptist Church, where Carrie and Ryan are active members for their wedding ceremony. Just as snowflakes and fingerprints are all different, no two weddings are alike. Some may have similarities, but each is unique to the traditions and personalities of each couple. One unique aspect of this particular wedding that I found incredibly touching was a time set apart for prayer. The couple prayed, the families gathered around them and prayed, and the audience prayed for the marriage of Carrie and Ryan. Everyone was on one accord in that moment, praying for the marriage of the two. Because of their faith in God and vow to keep God at the center of their marriage, I have no doubt that Carrie and Ryan will have a life full of joy and happiness.
The reception was full of life and fun! DJ Derek Cummins played hit after hit and the dance floor was never empty. At one point, I had to ask the dancers where they got all of their energy! I wanted to bottle it up and sell it! Aside from all of the special moments of a reception (you know, the cake cutting, special dances, bouquet toss, etc.), I love how I get to chat with some of the couple’s family during this time. At this reception, I spent some time chatting with Ryan’s grandmother. She is an absolutely adorable hoot, and I might have kidnapped her for my own if it weren’t illegal. As a result of this conversation, I probably know waaaaay more about Ryan than I should (think baby bathtub photos)!
Carrie and Ryan, thank you for allowing me the opportunity to serve you on your wedding day. You, your love story, your families, the ceremony, and fun reception are a perfect reflection of who you are and whose you are. I had a blast, and am excited to see what God does for you and through you in the years to come.
Dress: Christina Wu Bridal and Formal, Cincinnati
Florals: The Milam House
Ceremony Venue: Buck Run Baptist Church
Reception Venue: The Galerie KY
DJ: Derek Cummins
Cake: Sara Runyon
Catering: Johnny Carinos
Bridesmaids Dresses: Azazie
Groom and Groomsmen Attire: Generation Tux
Invitation Suite: Basic Invite
Photography: Shannon Drummond Photography (Peggy Harmeyer, 2nd Shooter)