A Sweet Virginia Beach Elopement

Caroline and Kyle are a dual military couple - she is a naval officer and he's an officer in the Coast Guard. It is challenging enough being a military spouse, so I cannot begin to fathom how challenging it is to be in the military while also being married to someone in the military. But Caroline and Kyle are not intimidated by a challenge. Cool, calm, and collected to their core, their elopement celebration was a go-with-the-flow day full of love, appreciation, and joy.

Caroline found me on the knot and loved the photos I took of Jen and Ron a few months ago. As we chatted back and forth, I became increasingly excited for their wedding day. When they received their wedding welcome box from me they immediately had a little date night with their new mugs, tea, and cookies, and I knew they were my people. The people who appreciate people. The people who appreciate the thoughts and actions of others. The people who just want the world to be filled with love and laughter.

Upon meeting them, all of my thoughts about them were validated. Their love for each other and the special people in their lives is unparalleled.

Catholic Convalidation Ceremony at St. Gregory the Great

A Catholic Convalidation Ceremony is a way to have your marriage recognized by the Catholic Church. You'll have the experience of a Catholic wedding but without communion, so it takes 30 minutes as opposed to an hour (or more). I met Caroline and Kyle at St. Gregory the Great Catholic Church for a few photos before the ceremony (like that stunning photo of Caroline above) including a little first look with Kyle as well as with Caroline's father, Jack. I was so excited when I saw a beautiful little rose garden off to the side of the chapel because it was the perfect place for all the pre-ceremony photos!

Caroline and Kyle looked for ways to incorporate their family and loved ones throughout their ceremony. The readings they chose for were intentional and full of messages relevant to their life and relationship and they chose siblings and best friends to share these readings with the group. Father Cristiano had a beautiful message for Caroline and Kyle as they enter their new life together and he was so full of excitement and joy for them throughout the ceremony. I try to keep my act together, but for some reason, this wedding pulled at my heartstrings and I cried at multiple points. It was so beautiful.

Husband + Wife Portraits at First Landing State Park

Caroline and Kyle are adventurers. They love hiking together, riding bikes, being outdoors, and exploring new places. They are sentimental in the best of ways - appreciating each and every place that has ever held a memory for them. From having their reception at the same place they had dinner the night Kyle proposed, to having their husband and wife portraits done at First Landing State Park - a place they love to hike and bike at - every detail of their wedding day was linked to a special memory for them.

The romance was THRIVING during this part of their photos. Actually, during their whole day, but they were on fire after the wedding ceremony. I barely even had to prompt them because every time they changed poses, they found a way to be close and romantic and loving. They are proud of their love and didn't waiver when strangers walked or biked past and congratulated them on their wedding - if anything, those moments made them more joyful and excited about being together. When I asked them what they were looking forward to most about being married, Caroline and Kyle said "Always having a built-in partner and lover to go on adventures with" and I think this quote perfectly sums up their love for each other.

The Kindest and Most Grateful People You'll Ever Meet

Every moment they could, Caroline and Kyle were thanking me for being there and photographing their wedding. Meanwhile, I was incredibly grateful to them for having me at their celebration! With all the love, appreciation, and kindness in the air, I truly felt privileged to be part of their day. Even now, weeks after their wedding, I am still receiving messages of thanks and gratitude from them, and each one brings a huge smile to my face. So congratulations, Caroline and Kyle! May you have a life full of love, laughs, and adventure!