When we meet our couples for the first time, none of us really know each other that well. And even though we do our best to connect during the zoom calls, planning meetings, and engagement shoots, there's simply no way to really KNOW someone in the few hours we get to spend with them before their wedding day. Until the speeches. Those speeches where parents and friends stand up and share what makes the bride and groom so special to them. These are the moments where we get to see how our couples are viewed, not by each other or themselves, but by their friends and family. And after Emily and Jalen's speeches, all we can say is that these two are so well loved by each and every person in their lives!
The church was lovingly decorated and designed in a way that allowed Emily and Jalen to have both their ceremony and reception in the same room, making it incredibly easy for their guests to enjoy the entire day from start to finish! By the time Josh arrived at the groom's getting ready room to take Jalen to the first look, he found Jalen simply and methodically pacing back and forth, preparing himself for the first moment he was going to see his bride. However, nothing could prepare us for the moment he saw her, because as far as we could tell, Emily and Jalen instantly entered a world where nothing else existed, and it was just them, standing there, celebrating the fact that they were about to get married! And even though they spent the rest of the day surrounded by friends and family, we don't think they ever fully came back, as we caught them simply gazing at each other throughout the rest of the day.
Instead of having a coordinator, Emily and Jalen had the power of "many hands make light work" on their side, as the ceremony space quickly became the reception, where their parents speeches recounted how these two have both grown up into incredible adults who are ready to take on the world together. However, their sibling's speeches as the best man and maid of honor were the official cue to "start the tears" as both Micah and Amy described what they saw in both Emily and Jalen as people and as friends. The night was still young though, and before Emily and Jalen headed off on their honeymoon, the reception moved from the church to the 'After-Party!" Jalen's family's backyard was transformed into a mini-venue, complete with refreshments and tents, just in case the weather got crazy! As soon as the first dances started, the rain began, but that didn't stop these two from having some of the sweetest first dances ever, followed immediately by a huge dance party, all in the middle of a thunderstorm!
Emily and Jalen, we just need for you to know that after spending time with your friends and family, you two are so well prepared for what this life is going to send your way. Your joy in every moment of your day simply caught up everyone along with you, and we know that that joy is going to grow greater and greater as you guys to experience everything God has to offer you two as husband and wife! Remember to always have fun and be a light to those around you, especially as you hop back onto the road this year! (And make sure Dr. Snood doesn't try to mess with you guys either! ;))
All our best!
J + A
Emily's sweet friend Abigail was the amazing talent behind all the hairstyles for the entire bridesmaids party and Emily herself!
And that was Josh's FAVORITE part of the wedding day! First Looks just get us every time!! Awww! The best!!
We were super stoked to find different locations to shoot around Jalen's church! Not often do you have the options of trees AND fields so close to the church building!
We just had to sneak in a couple photos from family photos! Because how CUTE are our bride and groom with their parents and siblings?!
And of course we can't forget the ADORABLE flower girl!! We fully acknowledge that "petal throwing" takes talent...and she did NOT disappoint! Just keep scrolling...it's coming...;)