Shane and Jena met at a restaurant in September of 2009 through a mutual friend. Immediately they hit it off and became great friends over the course of the following year.
"Shane had a way of making me feel so comfortable, so pretty and always made me laugh. He still does that today" - Jena
Spending a lot of time together throughout the year of 2010, Shane and Jena had developed an amazing friendship. When I asked her when it was she knew that she loved him as more than just a friend, she told me about a car ride she had with Shane during that transitional time of feelings.
"I got this weird, overwhelming feeling of love. I looked over at Shane and said 'I think I accidentally fell in love with you.'"
In September of 2010, Shane and Jena were officially a couple. Two years later, keeping the tradition of special moments in September, Shane would propose to Jena. It was September 18th of 2012, the day they celebrate their anniversary, Shane planned a vacation for them. They would be traveling to Atlanta with their friends to go to a Braves and Falcons game. Jena never suspected anything! She was so excited to be vacationing together with their friends to think anything more was planned.
Spending most of their Sunday tailgating before the game, Shane, Jena and their friends headed to the Dome. A little before halftime, Jena told Shane she was hungry and needed to empty her bladder. When Jena was coming out of the bathroom, she noticed Shane talking with a stranger. Shane quickly walked up to Jena, grabbed her hand and started walking fast, all the while telling her how much he loved her. Confused (and rightfully so, right?!) , Jena asked where they were going and reminded him she was hungry. Side note, I can visually picture this and it's just hilarious to me ;)
So, Shane and Jena, walking ever-so quickly, Jena still confused, walk around the corner toward their seats, only to see all of their friends hold up a huge banner that read, "JENA MARRY ME?"
"Everyone was cheering. It felt so surreal." - Jena
We began our morning of shooting at Eden Garden State Park in Santa Rosa Beach, Florida.
After spending some time in Eden Garden, we drove to find the beach to get our toes a bit sandy.
save the date, before the ocean washes it away.
In the photo below, Shane is standing in front of what was their wedding date written in the sand. Jena grabbed a stick and began writing their upcoming date into the sand. Just as she was drawing out the '5' in 2015, a small wave covered up what she had just finished writing. Shane stands in the way of the ocean waves, blocking them in sense, in hopes that that would help Jena write out their date without it being washed away a second time. As he's standing there, again another wave comes and washes away what she's done. Laughing, Jena tries to write it out just once more so that we can capture at least one photo of them with their date written in the sand. As you can see in the photo, that didn't happen, but I found it to be a sweet metaphor for Shane and Jena. As I look back at the photos from this time of our morning, I think about it like this: Jena wants to write their special date in the sand. Shane sees this obstacle, the wave that's coming, and wants to protect Jena from it. And although he couldn't stop what was inevitably going to happen (the wave washing away her writing), he still stood there for her as a shield. Now, I know to some of you this might sound like an overly dramatized recollection of what physically took place as she was writing in the sand. And had you been there, that may have been all you'd seen. However, I decide to view life a bit differently. Love is everywhere, you just have to pay attention sometimes. ;)
remember to play.
The playfulness that lives within their relationship is quite adorable!
Jena rocked that hat!
So now I ask YOU, you beautiful reader, you. Have you ever been a part of a proposal? If so, tell us all the juicy details in a comment below!!!
Thank you for checking out this blog post! As always, I welcome and appreciate your beautiful comments posted at the end of the blogs!
And to Jena and Shane, thank you for inviting me to capture such a precious time in your lives together. I can not WAIT until September!!!
business card magic.
In December of 2012, Toni and Sidney met at a party Toni's friends were throwing her in celebration of her college graduation. Being from close-knit, small towns in south Georgia where everyone knows everyone, they had seen each other around before, but never officially met. They hit it off immediately, talking and dancing together the entirety of the night! As the celebration was coming to its end, their celebration of life together was only just beginning. That evening before Sidney left the party, he knew he had to see Toni again. In a scramble, he handed her his handy dandy business card because it had his phone number on it! (How hilariously adorable, right!?)
"how did he propose?"
Toni and Sidney have a large circle of friends. A lot of which were seemingly all getting married. Except for them... at least that's how Toni secretly felt. One evening when she got off of work, Sidney handed her a small, square piece of mail postmarked and addressed to her. When he handed it to her, he said, "it looks like an invitation, but I don't know why it doesn't include my name, too." As Toni starts opening the mail, she's assuring him it was from their friends Jordan and Steven and he shouldn't take it personally. When she gets the card out of the envelope, she see's his name IS in fact on the card, along with hers, in really big letters. Excited as can be, she says, "see, Sidney, your name is on the card! You were invited too!" She slows down to actually read what the invitation was for...
That's when she noticed this wasn't the invitation to her friends upcoming celebration. Above their names, in small letters, the card read, "The journey of..." followed by their names, Toni Lynn and William Sidney Avera begins on; date, time, location (they were blank) and at the bottom in big letters it said, will you say "I do"? Completely confused, Toni drops the card to look at Sidney, who, at this point, was already down on one knee with a box in his hand. Of course she said "YES!"
bring on the rain.
After spending only a few short minutes with these two, along with phone calls and constant emailing, I felt as though I had known them since the beginning of their time together. It's amazing how that can happen!
And then the rain began to fall. And just like troopers, they wanted to stay with me for a few more minutes to capture some fun photos with the rain falling on them!
Toni and Sidney are saying their "I do's" this fall and I can't wait to capture more special moments with them! I adore this couple and wish you all the best while planning your wedding!!!
Documenter of love
Wedding Photographer. Writer. Wife. Empath. Feels naked without nail polish.