Wedding Planning for the Non-Wedding Planner

Wedding Planning for the Non-Wedding Planner

 

I am in no way a wedding professional, and today this is not a post about one of my sessions. It’s a personal blog that I wanted to share, well it will be part 1 of a few. If you are recently engaged or just love everything wedding, then you may enjoy a personal account of real life wedding planning for the non wedding planner. I got engaged this past winter! I was so excited, and I still am. I get to plan an amazing celebration with my best friend. Yes, I am having Matt help me in every piece of the wedding planning process, after all it is OUR day.

Engagement Session at Longwood Gardens

Probably the most important thing we’ve learned, you have to pick and choose your battles and just let somethings go. I am so happy that Matt and I took time for just the two of us to discuss what we really wanted and what was most important to both of us. For Matt, it was the caterer and then maybe the venue, for me it was the photographer and then the venue. With this in mind, we knew what we would want to fight for the most. Other than a little push back on the barn venue, there was not much arguing; but after explaining that the barn we picked had air conditioning and was not a barn for livestock anymore, everyone was on the same page.  Now we have all three of our wants booked for our July 2018 wedding, but it was not all easy sailing to get to this point.

In the days after our engagement, I learned real quick that everyone wanted to tell Matt and I what our wedding should be. No I don’t mean what they thought it should be, I mean what they wanted. No idea was held back; from the venue, to the dress, to pretty much anything you can think of. Some were serious “request/suggestions,” and others were joking around. My favorite joke one came from my cousins. The wedding my cousin’s planned was held in my grandparents’ backyard and included pizza, a keg, and a bouncy house. It wasn’t really my ideal wedding, but we all had a good laugh.

Engagement Session at Longwood Gardens

Matt and I still have a ways to go before we can say that we are done with the wedding planning, but we have learned that what is important for us IS worth standing our ground for. We now have our list of things that are negotiable, and we are learning what is important to our parents.

Nashville

Navigating the world of wedding planning is not an easy thing, and it’s pretty stressful at times. Not everyone likes the same thing or agrees on what something should look like. My suggestion is to sit down with all of your parents, talk about what they have envisioned your wedding would look like, and then start the planning. This way at least you have an idea before you start the planning, whether you take their vision into account or not, or just part of it. Don’t forget to have your list of non negotiables and negotiables, after all the wedding is about you, but it’s also for your parents.

Engagement Session at Longwood Gardens

Couple’s Sunset Brigantine, NJ Beach Portraits | Renae + Tom

Couple’s Sunset Brigantine, NJ Beach Portraits | Renae + Tom

Renae has been going to Brigantine, NJ since she was born, a few days to a week down the shore with her grandparents and family. For the last few years, Tom has joined Renae’s family and the last two years they have done portraits on the beach. When you both have a love of the sand, salt air, and waves, where better to take your couple’s pictures?! Renae loves the sunsets over the bay, but wanted to show off the place they spent every chance they could this summer.

Couple's Beach Session

We started our session in the wet sand that was only kissed by the waves, walking along the blue water, a few in the lifeguard stand, before heading back up the beach to the dunes. Don’t worry we didn’t climb or disturb anything, we stayed at the bottom to get the long grasses in the background and the few that were on the beach in front of them. Tom and Renae love playing soccer and running around just having fun no matter what game they are playing. To capture this side of them, I had them run off the dunes and down to the water. That sunset was coming up on us fast, so we drove over the to docks. We got there just in time to see the sun come out from under the clouds, and get the gorgeous pinks and oranges.

Couple's Beach Session Couple's Beach Session Couple's Beach Session Couple's Beach Session Couple's Beach Session Couple's Beach Session

Until next year, I will be swooning over Tom and Renae’s sunset pictures.

A Philadelphia/King of Prussia, PA Wedding at Sheraton Valley Forge | Julianna and Vasken

A Philadelphia/King of Prussia, PA Wedding at Sheraton Valley Forge | Julianna and Vasken

 

Meeting a couple on the day of their wedding can make you a little nervous. Pulling up to where they groomsmen are getting ready and a few of them standing on the front step with swords, a little confusing. Yes, I said swords.  Vasken and his groomsmen are into cosplay. Once I was ready to start shooting, the guys were ready to their picture. Posing and making faces the whole time.

Wedding_Philadelphia-PA_6 Wedding_Philadelphia-PA_6

After a handful of groomsmen photos, they were ready to head over to the church and what better way to take a fun group, than a school bus!

Wedding_Philadelphia-PA_6

St. Francis DeSales Church in Philadelphia was the perfect ceremony spot for Julianna and Vasken’s traditional wedding.

Wedding_Philadelphia-PA_4 Wedding_Philadelphia-PA_4

It’s time for a little bit of fun and the bridal party photos at a beautiful hotel in King of Prussia.

Wedding_Philadelphia-PA_6 Wedding_Philadelphia-PA_6 Wedding_Philadelphia-PA_6 Wedding_Philadelphia-PA_6 Wedding_Philadelphia-PA_6

 

Congratulations Vasken and Julianna!

Here’s to many more amazing memories!

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
©2016 TLM Productions, LLC
Hired by David Tutera Photography as a second shooter.

A Blue Bell, PA Wedding at Normandy Farms | Lauren and Matthew

A Blue Bell, PA Wedding at Normandy Farms | Lauren and Matthew

 

Where do I even being about this wedding?! It was a rainy October day, but the smiles and laughter coming from the groomsmen when I arrived, showed a little bit of rain was not going to stop this couple’s special day. This was only my second time working with only the groomsmen and I was not sure how to do getting ready pictures, when they were already dressed. I had met the guys at the St. Matthias Catholic Church in Bala Cynwyd, PA, inside was beautiful just like out of the story books. I didn’t feel that this would tell their story as the groomsmen. We headed to the steps and the cloudy spitting skies to get some funny and serious pictures.

Normandy-Farms-Wedding_4

When I told the guys to be themselves and do a “silly” picture, one of the groomsmen pulled out his keys and handed them to Matthew. I heard him say laughing, “This is your last chance to get out of this.” Don’t worry the groomsmen also gave Lauren the out if she wanted it too. 🙂

After a beautiful ceremony and pictures at the church, we headed to Normandy Farms. I was excited to see the venue as I had not been there before. The Silos Ballroom was decorated with white string lights, mason jars and pumpkins as the centerpieces with some of the tables having flowers that matched the bridesmaids bouquets. I loved the s’mores party favors with the tag that said,

“Sending you home with

S’More Love

Lauren & Matthew”

How cute is that? What an adorable favor for an elegant country vibe wedding!

They danced the night away with their family and friends, only stopping to do the bouquet and garter toss, and of course the cutting of a wonderful cake that featured their two fur babies.

Lauren and Matthew closed the night with a tribute slow dance for the people that meant so much to them but passed away. They had me tearing up as they entered the dance floor with Cole Swindell’s “You Should Be Here” playing and everyone slowy joining them.

Congratulations Matthew and Lauren!

Here’s to many more amazing memories!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

©2016 TLM Productions, LLC
Hired by David Tutera Photography as a second shooter.

Red Bank Battlefield Engagement Session | Mandi + Richard

Red Bank Battlefield Engagement Session | Mandi + Richard

 

It’s exciting when you find the person you want to spend the rest of your life with; and it’s even more exciting when they know too! Mandi and Richard starting dating a year ago and this past winter Richard asked Mandi to be his forever love.

I was so excited when Mandi called about doing their engagement photos, I started asked a few questions to get to know Mandi and Richard as a couple. Mandi told me they are both in the service; the first place that jumped in my mind for the location of our shoot was Red Bank Battlefield in Red Bank, NJ. What better place to do a shoot than a location that has a lot of history! Red Bank Battlefield was apart of the Revolutionary War, with The Whitall House still standing and used for renactments in the spring. Mandi loved the idea of the location having a rich history.

The Delaware River runs along the battlefield with the Philadelphia skyline in the distance. I was really nervous to take this ring shot but it was so worth it, because Mandi loved the shot while I was taking it and loves it even more now that she has it as her cover photo picture on Facebook.

Love and joy and happy planning.

 

 

 

 

 

 

©2017 TLM Productions, LLC

Voorhees, NJ Couple’s Session at RiverWinds in West Deptford, NJ | Xori and Nick

Voorhees, NJ Couple’s Session at RiverWinds in West Deptford, NJ | Xori and Nick

 

Xori and Nick were such a pleasure to work with. Xori had told me that she wanted to do a session near water because they love to go fishing on Nick’s Grandfather’s boat. After the weather sent rain on our original day, we rescheduled close to Thanksgiving and the weather was amazing! While it was a little chilly, there was no gusting winds or cool breezes.

I was so glad that I wore my rain boots so that I could get a few shot, because I had to backup into the Delaware River. I could feel how cold the water was through my boots! Freezing my feet was so worth it, because the quiet moments they spent whispering and cuddling were my favorites to capture.

You know a pose will be magical when, you hear them say this is my favorite.

Joy and Love.

 

 

 

 

 

 

©2016 TLM Productions, LLC

Partners for Life Ceremony at Adelphia’s in Deptford, NJ | Donna & Johnny

Partners for Life Ceremony at Adelphia’s in Deptford, NJ | Donna & Johnny

“You are my best friend, and my other half. You mean the world to me and I love you!” Donna and Johnny have been partners for the few years, and their love for each other shines through in every way. Donna and Johnny’s families surprised them with a ‘Best Friends for Life’ ceremony in December just before Christmas at Adelphia. They were excited to say the least!

Everyone pulled their chairs onto the dance floor to watch these two best friends become partners for life.

 

Surrounded by family, Donna and Johnny said, “I promise to be your partner and best friend for life.”

 

Here is to Donna and Johnny and their happiness and love!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

©2016 TLM Productions, LLC

A Cherry Hill, NJ Olive Garden Wedding | Danielle and Dugan

A Cherry Hill, NJ Olive Garden Wedding | Danielle and Dugan

Everyone has a love story, and each one is the most amazing love story. When Adrianne, the general manager at the Cherry Hill Olive Garden, told me that they were having their wedding at Olive Garden and needed a photographer; I was happy to be their photographer.

Danielle and Dugan met 15 years ago while they were both working at Olive Garden. Life happened and they went their separate ways, before re-uniting a few years ago.

The decor on the tables were simply beautiful, vases filled with water and floating candles surrounded by silk rose petals.

Love and Joy.

 

 

 

 

©2016 TLM Productions, LLC

 

Engagement Session at Longwood Gardens in Kennett Square, PA | Tonya and Matt

Engagement Session at Longwood Gardens in Kennett Square, PA | Tonya and Matt

 

I often don’t post many pictures of myself on here, but I’m sure you have seen the handful of blogs about my parents, sisters, and of course my amazing boyfriend, Matt. I can’t help but share all of these of Matt and I with you. We try to do pictures twice a year, just so I can practice new techniques and I just love taking pictures with my amazing man. Little did I know, our couple’s session was going to turn into an engagement session!

Yes, you read that right, ENGAGEMENT session!

Matt proposed on December 17, it was our two year anniversary and asked me while we were in our favorite spot at Longwood Gardens.

The first time we had gone to Longwood was a month after we had started dating, yes we were and still are crazy enough to go walk around the 1,000+ acre gardens in the winter. It was also the first time I took pictures of us, and yes we had taken pictures on the very same bench where Matt popped the question.

I have been asked many times already if I knew he was going to propose, I had no idea when it was going to happen. There were so many thoughts running through my mind when I saw him turn around and pull out a little black box. All of those thoughts disappeared when I looked into his eyes and he asked me that little four word question, “Will you marry me?”

I am looking forward to spending many years with Matt and I’m sure you will be seeing a handful of other blogs about the two of us in the coming years.   

Thank you Dyer’s Jewelry for my beautiful and sparkling ring!

A Somerdale, NJ Wedding at the Somerdale VFW | John and Debbie

A Somerdale, NJ Wedding at the Somerdale VFW | John and Debbie
Wedding Day

 

I met John and Debbie through my aunt, they are a down to earth couple and wanted their wedding to reflect that. They had the perfect sunny afternoon in July.

Wedding Day

 

Debbie wore a beautiful gown that fell to the floor and she looked gorgeous!

somerdale-wedding-photographer-3

 

The small white gazebo across from the VFW was decorated with balloons and streamers with a few potted flowers in front of the doorway.
somerdale-wedding-photographer-4

 

Debbie and John partied the night away with their close family and friends.

somerdale-wedding-photographer somerdale-wedding-photographer-5 somerdale-wedding-photographer-6

Congratulations Debbie and John!

 

©2016 TLM Productions, LLC