Oh my God, Lauren and Chris. How much do I love them? Let me count the ways...
Second shooting a wedding can be tough sometimes. You don't always know much about the couple, they're comfortable with their main photographer because they've done their engagement session already, but maybe not as comfortable with you since you are literally a stranger showing up at their door. It's a fun gig, but can sometimes be awkward. And then there are people like Lauren and Chris, who literally welcome you with open arms and are kind, generous, hilarious, and totally comfortable with you because they are totally comfortable with themselves, and each other. In other words, a photographer's dream.
This is a wedding I second shot for my friend (and another one of my favorite people ever, SERIOUSLY) Angela Hanlon. I spent the morning with the guys, and from the second Chris greeted me (with a giant bear hug), I felt completely comfortable. Lauren's two brothers were in the wedding party, as well as Chris' cousin as the best man and then a friend from high school serving as a groomsman, so I could tell these would be people who valued family. Chris also told me that although he and Lauren were both Catholic, they picked a church where everyone, from all different faiths and orientations would be welcome. I wanted to hug him (again). Let's just be honest... I pretty much wanted to hug him and Lauren the ENTIRE DAY. Oh and did I tell you how he proposed?? Okay, well let's just get on that right now...
Lauren and Chris met in high school, and became friends and eventually boyfriend and girlfriend. They started dating before either of them had a car, so they would walk or ride their bikes to a park in between their houses and play on the giant wooden swingset/ jungle gym and talk about life and basically get to know each other. Two years ago, Chris found out that they would be tearing that swingset down, so he suggested to Lauren that they go one last time. Once they got there, they climbed into the tower, like they had done a million times before, and once at the top, Chris asked Lauren to marry him. And I die from the cuteness.
I can't believe it's taken me so long to blog these pictures, but it's safe to say Lauren and Chris are one my favorite couples of all time. I just keep falling in love with them! They sent me a Starbucks gift card after 2nd shooting for them, they sent me a Christmas card, and they even messaged me about visiting Ireland while I was there for their honeymoon! Chris was deployed right after their wedding, so they were planning a delayed honeymoon... and while I had hoped our paths would cross in Ireland, they now have to put their trip off a bit longer while Lauren finishes a summer class. But I know they will have an amazing trip to the Emerald Isle when the timing finally works out!
Okay, enough gushing about this amazing couple. Pictures!
I took the balcony spot for the wedding... which I normally don't like, but in this church, it worked out PERFECTLY! It was just the right size to get some good shots from above without feeling super far away.
Do you think they were excited?? ;-)
Over to the country club for some formals before the reception...
So during the reception Angela asked Chris and Lauren if we could grab them for a couple of sunset pictures off the top balcony. Of course, since they were the best couple EVER, they happily agreed and we went upstairs to the private balcony. And this is when Chris said the funniest thing that has ever been said ever at a wedding in the history of ever. If you're a fan of my Facebook photography page, you already know what he said, but for those who aren't, here goes:
Chris: "So thank you guys so much for photographing our wedding. Seriously, I hope we didn't ruin your plans for the weekend. I mean I hope you didn't have plans to see the Hunger Games or something, I feel really bad if we took up your whole weekend."
Cue maniacal laughter... from both the bride and Angela :)
Can we talk about Lauren's dad for a second? TALK ABOUT THE LIFE OF THE PARTY! Honestly, not to be creepy, but if I ever get married, he is exactly what I would hope for in a father-in-law. My dad is a *fairly* serious guy... he only dances if Shakira comes on lol... so Lauren's dad was just absolutely cracking me up, and her mom was keeping right up with him. I honestly could have done a whole blog post about just the two of them lol. You could easily see where her and her brothers got their great personalities!
The end :) LOVE YOU LAUREN AND CHRIS!!! And thank you again for having me Angela!!!