"He really did notice me freshman year in marching band." Kelsi dabbed at the tears coming down her cheeks while she read Andrew's letter to her before their First Look. As she sat and read Andrew's sweet thoughts to her about their relationship's history beginning in high school to spending the rest of their lives together, he was doing the same in the sanctuary. They donned the gift the other had given (Kelsi put on pearl earrings, Andrew a handsome watch) and melted into each other's arms, a fitting shelter from the rain drops descending outside.
It was so endearing to hear the lawyer in Kelsi correct the grammar her math teacher groom used, but the sentiment remained the same and the tears flowed just as sweetly. (Florals done by the ever amazing Shelly Sarver of Shelly Sarver Designs out of Pella, Iowa. She crafted the altar arrangements on site with hints of tulips as a throwback to Andrew's Dutch heritage. Absolutely stunning!)
While I've seen Andrew in the halls of the school where we teach, his quiet demeanor never allowed for more than the soft-spoken "hello". It was so fun to see how Kelsi brought out Andrew's widest smiles and loudest laughter the camera has ever captured.
Kelsi + Andrew's bridal party and family were so lovely to work with and photograph (you can see some of them in the slideshow link listed at the end of this post) that we had ample time in between photos and ceremony to collect items and prepare. But when it finally came time to walk down the aisle, it seemed like it had approached so quickly. Here again is a great example of the benefits to having a second shooter. While I was in position at the front of the sanctuary, my second, Austin, was capturing some last moments between Kelsi and her dad:
In between the ceremony and reception, the rain let up just enough for us to go for a few outdoor portraits-literally, 5 minutes-and we wanted to take in the simple spring beauty of the Tournament Club of Iowa's rolling greens. But really, Kelsi and Andrew had eyes for only each other both outdoors and inside during toasts and dancing. :)
Kelsi had briefed me on the importance of having her grandparents be present and different obstacles that might keep them from being there. Thankfully, those obstacles were lifted and toasts were made in their honor for the legacy they've created of beautiful marriages. A shining example not only for Kelsi & Andrew, but for everyone in attendance. 63 years together is a beautiful thing and the bride and groom seemed to bask in its glow on the dance floor and for the rest of the evening.
Kelsi + Andrew: What a gorgeous day of celebrating love and family! I was honored to be a small part of it and so thankful to witness the start of your lives together. Thank you so much for having me-Gerard & I are always here to support you and possibly to ask, as Pastor Glen challenged those in attendance to do, "How are you doing on those vows?" ;)
Carrie (& Gerard)
Vendors of Note:
Ceremony-Crossroads Church, Norwalk, Iowa
Florist: Shelly Sarver of Pella, Iowa
Reception: Tournament Club of Iowa
Party Transportation: Absolute Transportation