It’s like rain on your wedding day
It’s like rain on your wedding day

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The best part of my job is the people. I have the greatest couples, and documenting their story is the best because it’s unfolding along the way. Parts of it are already there, but much of it happens “live” and in the moment. This is especially true of wedding days. And, as far as wedding days are concerned, JoDee & Mike had an amazing one.
You may remember them from their super great cooking themed engagement session. (Mike is the Sous chef at Lucia. If you are in the Dallas area, you should go eat his food.)

 

These two decided to get married at the Inn at BK Ranch just outside of Palestine, TX. It’s a gorgeous location and perfect for a weekend of wedding fun and goodness.

 

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Check out all the wedding pretty.  Doesn’t it all just look amazing?  Every detail has been thought through and planned out.
Enjoy it while you can…. SPOILER ALERT: Not for long.

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When I first encountered JoDee on her big day, she was doing what every sensible bride does on a Sunday: picking the winner of NFL games.
(Her mother and sister were also making their picks with input from JoDee’s Grandmother.)

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Speaking of her Grandmother: JoDee wore her earrings because she is super sweet like that.  And TOMS because she is super sensible like that.

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I adore the faces brides make when they are getting their dress synched up in the back.  Always the best.

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Some First Look magic.

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Wait… what… no bouquet?

Why no flowers JoDee?

“No particular reason besides I just find them silly. Like really. Stop and think about it. Why would anyone hold flowers… I don’t even own a purse; let’s just say I’m not a fan of carrying things about. So I opted for the flower crown.”

Works for me. :)

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So it started to drizzle at this point. So I said to JoDee, “Do we want to head inside or go ahead and knock out the wedding party photos?”
JoDee looked at me like I was a crazy person and said, “It’s just a little rain, we’ll be fine.”

629 Cool Bride Points earned.

Hey look everyone. Beautiful people, in a beautiful place, wearing beautiful clothing.

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JoDee’s dog decided picture time was over.

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About an hour before the ceremony time, it became clear that the rain was not going to pass over. I’ve seen this scenario unfold dozens of times: the will it rain/it won’t rain/please don’t rain/oh crap it’s raining dance that everyone does around the bride. As people tiptoe around the subject ,they try to ask her what to do or what she wants done on her most special day in the history of days.

This was no different. People went to JoDee to find out what she wanted to do and she started thinking through options and opinions. I found Mike and asked him if he wanted to go talk with JoDee and come up with a plan and he said, “Just do whatever she says.”

The thing is, it was not like a typical dude, just deferring to “whatever she wants; it’s her day.”

It was more like:
She is capable.
She knows what to do.
I trust her.
Well the more people asked, the more it became an issue JoDee did NOT want to deal with. So, she passed the decision back to Mike.

Then, as soon as it was in Mike’s court, he took it and ran with it. We are moving it inside. The rain is coming, so let’s get ready.

And just like that, without even realizing it, they did it.

They did one of the hardest things in marriage.

They faced a problem, tossed it around a bit, and then solved it by leaning on and trusting each other’s strengths and weaknesses.
Mike COULD have made the decision all along. Yet he was wise enough to respect and love JoDee enough to let the decision be her’s. When JoDee felt the burden of it become too much, she handed it off to Mike, trusting in him to work it out.

Talking through, juggling, and working out difficult decisions are what make marriages stick. These two put on a clinic on how to do it 30 minutes before they were married.

Well, eventually the rains came. In fact, it started to pour. All their friends jumped right in and started moving tables and place settings inside and up stairs. The rain had come and it was here to stay. The outdoor wedding had become an indoor event. A soggy indoor event. But no one seemed to mind. We were all making the best of it and they were still going to get married.

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Then something interesting happened. The clouds parted. (Well, more like it stopped raining.) For a moment, we were golden. We all ran outside and decided to try and do this thing as planned.

Here comes the bride.

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Mike’s father performed the ceremony. And being a basketball official back in the day, he even surprised them with a little wardrobe change.

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Then it started raining. Again. Right in the middle of their ceremony.

Someone tried to give JoDee and umbrella, but she refused it. I later asked her why and she said, “If the guests were willing to get wet, so was I.”
821 Cool Bride points earned.

Turns out, rainy wedding days are a bit of a tradition in Mike’s family. Both Mike’s siblings had rain at their wedding. A massive storm blew through the morning of his brother’s wedding and Hurricane Ike caused a ruckus for his sister’s big day.

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Eventually the party moved inside. (Sans table linens.)
The rest of the afternoon was spent full of laughter, memories, and toasts from family. Toasts that included a signed photo from Tony Romo. (Although the signature did resemble Mike’s brother’s handwriting.)

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Also, who doesn’t love the Mug Machine?

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Fun Fact: Dude in the jacket in the lower left, split his pants bending over for the photo.

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One million thank you’s to you two for letting me share in your day.

Thanks for trusting me with it.
Thanks for braving the rain.
Thanks for showing me how marriage is supposed to work.

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Shelby & Logan | Astin Mansion Wedding
Shelby & Logan | Astin Mansion Wedding

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If I had to sum up Shelby & Logan’s wedding day in one word, I would choose “relationships” as their word.  Every time I turned around, it seemed as if these two were deep in conversation or a moment with another person from their story.  Weddings are often a time when the bride and groom are surrounded by their friends and family, but they rush and events of the day make it easy to overlook the people they love the most.  Shelby & Logan spent their day fully present and soaking up every moment.

 

 

They were married at the historic and gorgeous Astin Mansion in downtown Bryan.  This place is amazing.  They are also home to Carriage House Floral who brought their A game.  Take a look.

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The ladies spent the morning like all good Aggie bridesmaids… Watching football.

 

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Right before she started getting ready Shelby’s mom gave her a few small gifts from herself and other friends.  Then they sorta broke down.  Just for a minute. :)

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Shelby’s maid of honor loved me getting this shot of her brushing her teeth.

 

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I love toasts.  They are super great.  I also enjoy finding the creation of the toast.  So many times I come across that moment, when a mother or father sit down to try and put into a few sentences, what a lifetime of raising and loving a child has meant to them.  It’s rarely an “amazing” or “stunning” image, but so many times they end up being my favorites from the day.

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Shelby’s dad was super sweet when he saw her for the first time that day.

 

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I love how Shelby went all creepy on Logan during their First Look.

 

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So, somewhere along the day, we got news that the cake had been dropped on it’s way to the venue.  Not cool right?  Of course Shelby responded how every bride should.  She was like, “No big deal, I’m sure it will all work out.” :)

 

And just like that Shelby earned 387 Cool Bride points.

 

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Can I tell you a little secret?

Everyone knows you are supposed to look at the bride when she comes down the aisle.  (It’s her day BLAH BLAH BLAH.)

And… all you professional wedding go-ers also know that looking at the grooms reaction is also a golden moment.

The thing is, and due to the angle and location, this is so hard for most of you to see: the mother of the groom is sometimes where it’s at.  :)

All mothers ever want is for their kids to have a fulfilling life.  It’s never about them being successful, rich, or even giving them grandkids.  They just want them to be full.  To know they have a teammate.  So when a mother can see her son, looking at the woman who will be his partner in life, his biggest fan, the one who will hold him, give him comfort, joy, and the security that she has given for all these years, it’s a special moment.  I love that moment.

 

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Right after the ceremony I heard Logan say, we should take a selfie.  Then Shelby said, I don’t have a phone.  Then Logan said, I don’t have a phone.  Then I said, I have a phone.  Then they selfied on my phone while i photographed them selfieing.

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You’ll be surprised to know that Logan’s grandmother is a fan of watching her grandson dance with her daughter. :)

 

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Sometimes I think the only reasons Aggies get married is so someone will photograph their rings.

 

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Hey, hey.  Guess what showed up?

 

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Not only was Shelby cool about the whole thing, she went over and gave the cake lady a hug and thanked her for making her another cake.

274 Cool Bride points earned.

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So many people shared so many great stories about growing up and raising these two.  I would love for you to hear them, but guess what?  I was only there to take photos.  Good news though!

Matt Johnson of FilmStrong was there.  He is a killer videographer based out of Dallas.  You should book him.

 

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Towards the end of the night, Logan surprised Shelby by playing and singing a song for her.  He also made all us other guys look like chumps.  :)

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These two ended the night how I believe every couple should end their night: with the dance floor all to themselves.  It’s totally a thing that feels right out of a movie.  I love it every time.

 

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Thank you guys for an amazing day full of laughter, friendships, and all around Aggie coolness. ;)

 

P.S.  You know what else was at their wedding?  The Mug Machine.

 

Check out my 10 favorites from the night.

 

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Amanda & Steve | The Mug Machine
Amanda & Steve | The Mug Machine

Amanda & Steve had a killer wedding.  It was what every wedding should be.  (A party.)  What better way to party than with The Mug Machine?

Here are a few of my favorites.dallas-wedding-photo-booth-01 dallas-wedding-photo-booth-02 dallas-wedding-photo-booth-03 dallas-wedding-photo-booth-04 dallas-wedding-photo-booth-05 dallas-wedding-photo-booth-06 dallas-wedding-photo-booth-07 dallas-wedding-photo-booth-08 dallas-wedding-photo-booth-09 dallas-wedding-photo-booth-10 dallas-wedding-photo-booth-11 dallas-wedding-photo-booth-12 dallas-wedding-photo-booth-13 dallas-wedding-photo-booth-14 dallas-wedding-photo-booth-15 dallas-wedding-photo-booth-16 dallas-wedding-photo-booth-17 dallas-wedding-photo-booth-18 dallas-wedding-photo-booth-19 dallas-wedding-photo-booth-20 dallas-wedding-photo-booth-21

Hey there bride who has already booked me for her wedding. You totally want to add this to your wedding coverage right?  Call me and we’ll make it happen. :)

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top 10 2013 | the winners!
top 10 2013 | the winners!

So excited to announce the winners of the top 10 contests from last week.  We had over 2,500 votes and some really really close categories.  In the end, these were the winners.  Thanks again to all my couples for letting me tell their story.  If you did not win, be sure and tell everyone good game before you walk off the court.  You couples that did win, make sure you celebrate responsibly.  No looting or rioting.

Engagement Session: This is the classroom where Emily & Lucas met.  This is the very place their story began.

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Wedding Rings: Blake works in visual effects, I wanted him to be able to drop his rings into any film he made in the future. ;)

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Bridal Session: Krystle crushed her bridal shoot at Marvin United Methodist in Tyler.

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Mug Machine: Much like their wedding day, Lauren & Alex’s Mug Machine was off the hook.  (Do people still say “off the hook”?)

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Random:  Lindsey & Jim’s reception and dance floor was the place to be.

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Wedding:  I honestly could not have picked a better photo to win this category.

Jaime had been fighting serious migraines all day, in fact we almost had to put off the wedding till later in the day. After the ceremony they were just sitting in the kitchen resting and someone asked them if they were ready to make their entrance and have their first dance. Jaime said she didn’t think she was up for all that. Nolan said no problem. About five minutes later while holding and comforting her they broke out into a slow dance. All alone, with no fanfare, no one clapping, no one watching. I took 3 photos and walked out. It was a moment that just belonged to them.

Just the two of them on their wedding day.

It was a beautiful picture of marriage. It’s not the big public moments that get us through life. It’s not the things we say when everyone is watching. Marriage is about what we do when we are alone.

Marriage is about changing the toilet paper roll.
Marriage is about making the bed.
Marriage is about impromptu slow dances in the kitchen.

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Thanks again to everyone who voted.  And to all my 2014 couples.  Let’s make some images that make these 2013 ones look like poo. :)

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top 10 2013 | mug machine photos
top 10 2013 | mug machine photos

 

Get Excited!  It’s your chance to help someone win a 16×20 print!  Voting is open till midnight.  Tell your friends.

 

Today’s category: Mug Machine

 

Let’s be honest… sometimes wedding receptions can be a bit…. uh… boring.  The Mug Machine changes that.  How else can you explain two Air Force buddies making out while wearing super hero masks?

 

Take a look at the entries then vote at the bottom of this post.

1. Pinch

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2. Shake

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3. King
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4. Eyes
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5. Pour
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6. Hair

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7. Teacup
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8. Kiss
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9. Baby
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10. Shoryuken
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