Sunshine + laughter filled the air on this Friday in April. It was a beautiful day for a wedding and I was honored to be their to celebrate with Jordan + Molly. The entire event was held in Birmingham, Michigan – just minutes from where Molly grew up. The ceremony was at her family’s church – Our Lady Queen of Matyrs and the reception followed at The Townsend Hotel in downtown Birmingham. Molly was radiant – a calm and lovely bride. Jordan was dapper, happy and ready to marry his love. These two had been together for a while and you could sense the anticipation and joy that their wedding day had finally come.
Jordan + Molly, thank-you for allowing me to be a part of your day – it was absolutely wonderful through and through!
See those little kiddos back there? Molly is a kindergarden teacher and she invited her class to the ceremony! The priest was sure to include them in the event!
Well, spring is upon us and it seems that summer may be creeping in here very quickly… which I wouldn’t mind :). I apologize for the quietness on the blog the past few weeks. In April, I took about two weeks off – one week to reunite with my photography kin and one week to spend in the mountains of Asheville, NC celebrating the anniversary of my dear friends. Then, just like that, we were home and the flowers were blooming and sessions were in full swing and the wedding season kicked off. Phew.
As I figure out the new rhythm of the season, I’m excited for the newness that is to come in the next few months. New couples, new marriages, new families, new destinations… this summer is bound to be a great one and I can’t wait to share the adventures along the way! Tomorrow, I’m thrilled to share my 100th wedding with you – Jordan + Molly’s beautiful Birmingham nuptials from early last month. But while you wait in suspense, I thought I would share a few of my favorite images from the lifestyle family sessions I’ve had the passed few weeks!
First up, Baby Lucy, with her awesome parents, Mike + Janelle:
And finally, I’d like you to meet, Silas! This sweet babe is the firstborn of Tim + Lauren, dear friend’s of mine from our college days. The last time I photographed these two was on their wedding day, back in 2009. Amazing to see where life has taken all of us since then :)
I met Sam several years ago. We were both in college and shared mutual friends. From the moment I met her, I remember her being a sweet, happy individual and I always loved catching up with her whenever I could. One of my first memories of James coincidentally, is at a wedding! He and Sam had been dating for a few months and she was a bridesmaid at a wedding I was attending. At one point, during the reception, the power went out (yes, true story) and James immediately dove in – helping locate and pick-up a generator so that the party could continue. Instantly, I could tell he was confident, yet gracious and kind… and he made Sam even happier than she ever had been. I knew right then that they were made for each other.
Over the last few months as I’ve gotten to know them as a couple and learned more about the two of them, I’ve come to realize that they actually are perfect for each other :) James + Sam adore one another, make each other laugh constantly and deeply care + respect for each other and their loved ones. It was pure joy to watch these two interact with each other and their guests on their wedding day. I’m pretty sure they didn’t stop smiling all day long – they were just too excited that their wedding had finally come! They were wed at Baldwin Street CRC in Jenison, MI and celebrated at Wallinwood Springs Golf Club nearby. The typical March weather tried to “rain” on this party… but as I learned over a year ago, James (+ Sam) won’t let a good party be stopped by anything ;) Congratulations, you two! Enjoy the preview of your day!
On a cold winter Saturday, we were honored to be a part of the wedding of David + Karen. The entire celebration was held at the beautifully renovated Westin Book Cadillac in downtown Detroit. Many pieces of this day were not typical – the bride wore a stunning royal blue dress, the bride + groom’s children stood as their only bridal party members and the ceremony was officiated by the bride’s high school prom date! It was a day of reminiscing and new beginnings – a day full of excitement, anticipation and joy.
David + Karen met in high school. They were in choir together and shared many mutual friends. College plans took these two separate ways for years. They lived in different states, pursued separate professions and each had a few amazing children. It wasn’t until fate (or their high school homecoming game) brought them back together… And it was love at second sight ;) For the past three years, they have dated across state lines, but it was clear that they were meant to be. Last month, in a stellar venue, with their family and friends next to them; they committed the rest of their lives to each other. The ceremony was simple, but full of grace and love (and a few embarrassing stories from the high school friend who officiated ;)). Jonathan and I couldn’t stop talking about how awesome this day was through and through. David + Karen – THANK-YOU for inviting us into your story and allowing us to be a part of such a wonderful occasion. We are excited for this new chapter for you and wish you nothing but the best! Enjoy the preview of your AWESOME Detroit wedding!
Jonathan and I were driving across the state on a sunny Thursday afternoon, when I received this text from my friend, Stacie, “Hey… wondering how busy you are the next couple days? Any free time?” Now, this is a normal text to receive, especially when Stacie and I had been chatting about grabbing coffee to catch-up… But when she called me a few minutes later needing to talk about specific details, I was a little caught off guard, to say the least. Let me rewind a bit…
Stacie, is married to Ben. They’ve been married almost six years and in that time have traveled the world together, lived in a few places (near and far), studied for graduate degrees, and shared a passion for students – specifically college students. Currently, they find themselves working at a college ministry in Michigan where they spend all hours of the day hanging out with and mentoring students (these two are pretty rad!). Throughout their relationship, Ben + Stacie have accomplished many dreams together, but there has been one that has specifically been on their hearts and minds in the most recent years – they have dreamt of being parents and raising a family! After much prayer, consideration and anticipation, it became evident that they should begin the journey to adopt. So they started the process, filed paperwork and readied their hearts to become adoptive parents. On Monday, February 18th, when almost everything was complete, Ben + Stacie joyfully emailed their close friends and family to announce that they were officially pursuing adoption! At that point, all they had left to do was wait…… and that waiting could take anywhere from three months to three years. So they invited their close community to pray for them and join in the excitement of anticipating a little one with them.
The next day (about 12 hours after sending the email), Ben + Stacie got a phone call from their case worker that would change their lives. A baby boy had been born on Monday and needed a home! “Would you like to be considered by the birth mom to adopt this baby boy?” the case worker asked them. This shocked Ben + Stacie because they were told they would probably wait at least a few months to hear anything and they still had a few minor paperwork things on their end to wrap up. The case worker assured them they could be considered if they were willing, but they needed to respond ASAP. Within the hour, Ben + Stacie affirmed that they would like to be considered as parents and they spent the afternoon chatting about potential baby names, praying and waiting…
Wednesday morning, the case worked called once again and announced that Ben + Stacie had been chosen by the birth mom!! The wait was over – they were finally going to be parents! They immediately jumped in the car and headed to the hospital a few hours away. That afternoon, less than 48 hours after announcing their plans to adopt, Ben + Stacie were holding their SON. That little one was a miracle, a blessing and the sign of many promises fulfilled. They named him Jaden, which means, “God hears us.” God had heard Ben + Stacie’s desire to become parents and blessed them with a handsome and healthy little child. What a joy!
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When Stacie called me that Thursday afternoon and said, “Jenn, I’m looking at my husband right now as he holds our son” it came as quite a surprise, since three days earlier I had received that email from them!! We immediately scheduled a newborn session and I could hardly wait to meet the sweet babe! Jaden is already loved by many and it was such a joy to spend a few hours with the three of them celebrating his arrival. Without further adieu, here are a few images of Jaden on one of his first days home with his mom + dad!