Johnny & Shannon: Green Gables Estate Wedding, San Marcos

When love makes you pack your bags for an unknown city, when you can't lock eyes without smiling and laughing, when your friends can hardly contain their excitement for the moment you say "I do," you know you've got something special. All of that and more made this wedding at Green Gables Estate in San Marcos a day of pure romantic bliss.

Just before Johnny saw Shannon in her bridal gown for the first time, I asked him if he remembered the first time he ever saw her. All at once I saw his face just struck with emotion, like he was watching that moment play back in his mind and reflecting on how much had happened since then, bringing them both to this moment. And then his bride came walking toward him, and again they saw their love for the first time...

What a fantastic celebration! One of my favorite moments was seeing the entire bridal party erupt in cheers of joy for their best friends when they were pronounced husband and wife. Shannon and Johnny, I hope that every day of your marriage is this full of amazement, dancing, and happy laughter! I hope that you always look at each other with this same expression of "How did I get so lucky?" You have a lifetime of joy ahead of you.

"We Have Love" by Clemency, licensed via Musicbed

Cinematography: The Adventures Of
Photography: Vis Photography
Venue: Green Gables Wedding Estate
Floral Design: Flora Glamor
DJ: Earl Henry, My DJs

Kayln & Joy: San Francisco City Hall Elopement

One year ago today, we were in San Francisco for SF Pride and a very special elopement.

Kayln and Joy were in the midst of planning a big wedding in their hometown of Denver, Colorado, when they realized all of the little decisions just didn't seem as important as their commitment. Who cares what color the napkins are? We just want to get married! They were already planning on going to San Francisco to walk in the Pride Parade, so they decided to kick off the weekend with a wedding at City Hall! We had the honor of being witnesses to their vows, and joining them in exploring San Francisco.

A few months later, Kayln and Joy gathered their friends and family for an "Engagement Party," and played this video:

What a fantastic surprise! I really love elopements because the whole day is so private and so precious - and with a quality wedding film, you can still share your wedding with family and friends back home.

How incredible that exactly one year later, the Supreme Court has made a historic ruling for marriage equality across the United States! What a fantastic anniversary gift! My heart swells when I read the words that Justice Anthony Kennedy wrote to sum up this historic decision:

No union is more profound than marriage, for it embodies the highest ideals of love, fidelity, devotion, sacrifice, and family. In forming a marital union, two people become something greater than once they were.  As some of the petitioners in these cases demonstrate, marriage embodies a love that may endure even past death. It would misunderstand these men and women to say they disrespect the idea of marriage. Their plea is that they do respect it, respect it so deeply that they seek to find its fulfillment for themselves.  Their hope is not to be condemned to live in loneliness, excluded from one of civilization’s oldest institutions.  They ask for equal dignity in the eyes of the law. The Constitution grants them that right.

Celebrate love, today and every day!

The R2 Wedding: Kauai, Hawaii

We truly believe that every love story is an adventure, but this one takes the vegan cheesecake. Last year we experienced the most amazing love story unfolding on the island of Kauai, and I am so excited to share it with you!

Renee and Robin - also known as The R2 Studio - are brilliant photographers and an all-around incredible couple. Years ago, when it seemed impossible that they could ever celebrate their love openly with an official, legal wedding, they exchanged rings and promises on a beach in Hawaii. As the tides turned in favor of equality and love, they knew they wanted to return to Hawaii with their closest loved ones to declare their commitment in a wedding ceremony that exceeded their dreams.

If you've got 20 minutes and a few extra tissues, you should definitely start by watching Renee and Robin's Love Story Film FIRST. Featuring a helicopter ride over the Na Pali Coast, a surprise proposal, and reminiscing on seven years of falling in love. (or skip to the wedding film below)

After a full week of hanging out with the "R2 Ohana" and going on adventures, it was time for the main event. Renee and Robin decided to forego the typical beach wedding (nothing about these amazing women is typical or boring!) and instead got married in a taro field near Hanalei Bay, against a mountain backdrop that is unmistakably Kauai. The brides walked down the aisle to "Couldn't Love You More" by My Plastic Sun - played on the ukulele, of course - escorted by their son Austin.

I can tell you that Renee wasn't the only one crying during that ceremony! It was such an emotional moment to see this family publicly declaring their love and unity. The conch shell that you hear in the video was blown by a neighboring farmer, as a spontaneous show of support and celebration. He said that witnessing these two brides saying vows to each other was a beautiful thing, and in that moment he knew it was right.

The whole week we spent in Kauai was incredible, and we were so honored to be welcomed into this group of loving people who know the true meaning of ohana - family. Renee and Robin, thank you for bringing us into your ohana, and for allowing us to tell your amazing story! This was a once-in-a-lifetime adventure... and I'm sure you have many more ahead of you!

"Couldn't Love You More" by My Plastic Sun, used with permission
"These Are The Days" by Zach Winters, licensed via Musicbed
"Together Forever" by Gio Galanti, licensed via Musicbed

Cinematography: The Adventures Of
Photography: Dan Dalstra
Makeup Artist: Lenea Sadler Makeup
Helicopter Tour: Island Helicopters Kauai
Canal Tubing: Kauai Backcountry Adventures

Angie & Matt: Santa Barbara Wedding

Today's feature is full of celebration for this awesome couple! This is an anniversary post, our #MCM for a charming and emotional groom, plus a big surprise at the end...

Angie and Matt are the type of people you just want to party with. They are full of joy and energy, and it seems that they are always ready to celebrate all of the good things in life! So you can imagine that their wedding was quite the celebration.

I do have to say that these two are made to be on camera. Not only because they are so good looking, but because they just shine with love no matter who is watching! Magic like that looks good on everyone. You can tell that when Matt sees his bride coming down the aisle, she is the whole world to him. Plus, their vows? Perfection!

I loved the Polish traditions that were included in the day, such as the bread and salt (symbols of plenty and of struggle), and throwing coins at the couple (whoever picked up the most is supposed to control the metaphorical purse strings!).

Angie, Matt, and their guests also ROCKED our SlowMo Booth.

After all of that, are you ready for one more reason to party? These two are having a baby!!! Big congratulations to Mr. and Mrs., soon to be Daddy and Mommy! With parents like you, this kid is going to be amazing.

Soundtrack Licensed via Musicbed:
Wedding Film: "Tonight" by Secret Nation
SlowMo Booth: "Just My Type" by SAINT MOTEL

Cinematography: The Adventures Of
Photography: Blake Gardner
Ceremony Venue: Our Lady of Mount Carmel, Santa Barbara
Reception Venue and Catering: Hyatt of Santa Barbara
Floral Design: Kaleidoscope Flowers
DJ: Brian Green, Greenhouse Prod.
Band: Dust Bowl Cavaliers

Kyle & Michael: Elopement at Mount Hamilton Observatory

One of the best reasons I'm proud to be a geek - to be honest and enthusiastic about my passions and obsessions - is that you meet the most wonderful people! You never know what friendships and adventures are in store when you bond over your fandom.

Kyle and Michael are two fantastic Whovians (translation: fans of the long-running BBC sci-fi series Doctor Who) in love. When they discovered our styled wedding shoot in honor of Doctor Who ("Through All of Time and Space") they were inspired to celebrate their shared fandom - and what better way than to run off and elope at a 100 year old observatory?!

With the help of Jen at First Pick Planning, Kyle and Michael planned this incredible surprise. They would exchange personal vows in a private and beautifully designed ceremony, officiated by a dear friend, and would keep it all a secret for months (!!!) in order to surprise friends and family at a big celebration in Georgia. Fortunately we were there to tell the story, and to help share this intimate, emotional, incredible adventure with everyone when the time was right.

I can't get over those vows, and the thought put into every detail of this beautiful day. It was a real treat to be a part of this romantic escape - a whole day dedicated solely to two people in love!

We offer special discounts for elopements like this. If you are planning your wedding ceremony with less than 20 guests and no reception, let us know! (Bonus if it's in a unique location like this!)

I also can't say enough about the fantastic team that pulled this event together. The staff at Lick Observatory is so fun and helpful while taking care of this incredible historic space, Jen at First Pick Planning made sure nothing was overlooked, and Candice Benjamin Photography documented the day with incredible photos!

Kyle and Michael, I am so grateful for the opportunity to be a part of your adventure, and to give you the best of both worlds - a private ceremony just for you two, and a chance to share your love, your vows, and your celebration with all your friends and family! It may not be quite as exciting as the TARDIS, but video is a pretty fantastic time machine!

Soundtrack licensed via MusicBed: "Climb" by Michael Rossback

Cinematography: The Adventures Of
Photography: Candice Benjamin Photography
Coordination: First Pick Planning
Venue: Lick Observatory