Have you ever met someone that, once introduced, you instantly felt happier inside? I mean, the sort of person that can pull you out of a slump just by saying hello or make you forget what you were upset about?
Bethany is that person.
The moment I walked in the door in the basement of her church, this adorable, pint-sized powerhouse popped up out of her chair, stuck her hand out and gave me an enthusiastic, "Hi! I'm Bethany!" And then I thought, "Oh shoot. New best friend!"
Bethany is bubbly, happy, enthusiastic, and absolutely contagious. She bounced around the room in her veil, snacking on Cheez-Its and handing out gifts to her bridesmaids (Coach purses!). Every now and again she would pause and an enormous grin would spread across her face, and she'd announce how positively excited she was to be marrying Nate today.
You can't not be happy around Bethany. It's impossible not to pick up on her spunky vibes and fiery spirit. She's packs a heckuva punch for such a small package. And I mean tiny, like, she had to have 7 inches trimmed off her gown sort of tiny. It's like she couldn't contain it, the joy for her wedding day just bubbled and overflowed. I suppose when you're such a petite lady, all that happiness has to come out or you might explode.
And her girls. Such a helpful group of bridesmaids, I have never seen. They were so kind, so patient, so willing to help their friend make the most of her big day. They buttoned buttons and snapped snaps and tied ties and buckled buckles. They lipsticked and glossed and primped and zipped each other up. They cheered Bethany on with gusto, telling her how beautiful she looked and how excited they were to be a part of her day. Good friends. That's the best.
I love these next two. Nate left a card for Bethany and a little tub of gummy worms. I didn't sneak a peek at what he wrote (even though I am nosy and really, really wanted to), but Bethany's happy tears told me it was very, very sweet.
And then, of course, the groom. Nate was a bit more reserved than his bride-to-be, a quality I think will serve them well as they balance each other out in their marriage. As I was shooting, I told Nate that Bethany looked beautiful, that she was a pistol with boundless energy and what a fun wife I thought she'd be.
Nate smiled and said, "I know. And whenever she is tired, she just supplements with candy." So awesome.
I love the moment right before the ceremony starts. The guests have quieted down but nothing is happening yet, but everyone knows that any second, the music will start and everyone will turn to look down the aisle for the bride's big moment. I, however, was focused on the groom.
I just love this shot. Such genuine happiness in that smile. His buddies smiling at him, but he's all about his bride. Locked in, huge grin, ready to get hitched. Yay!
Bethany and Nate had two of their friends sing a few songs during the ceremony. It was absolutely beautiful. I has goosebumps trickling up and down my arms. For a moment, I forgot I was supposed to be taking pictures. But I'm glad I snapped to it in time to catch the look on Bethany's face as her dear friend sang on her wedding day. I bet they will be friends forever and ever.
And this little pinky here, what a doll. She was blowing bubbles and wishing the newlyweds well, but as soon as they got into the car, she burst into tears and cried, "Bethany! Beth-a-neeeeeeeeeeee!"
Bless her heart. Her mother explained to her that she was only going to the reception and they'd see her again soon. I like that kind of enthusiasm, kid. Stay strong.
Bethany and Nate, I'm so glad I got to be a part of your wedding day! I hope you had a rockin' honeymoon and enjoy starting your life together. Cheers!
And many thanks to Jessica Klick at One17 Photography for having me as a second shooter.