Seeing familiar faces in my new state was what helped get me through the first few months after my big move across the county in 2011. To this day, six years after moving to Colorado, the feeling is still the same.
Lindsay and I met when were were in kindergarten and were inseparable for the majority of elementary school. I was the oldest of six, and Lindsay was an only child, so I think we secretly loved getting an inside look (and at times for me, an envious look) of each others lives. I can remember Lindsay hosting “gymnastics lessons” on the playground at Easton Elementary, where I tried desperately to learn how to do a round off, and our attempts at planning matching outfits for school the following day.
Needless to say, I was so excited when she got in touch with me a few months ago to let me know that she was surprising her wonderful husband, Matt, with a trip to Colorado for Christmas. She went on to tell me that they had never had professional images done before and that they’d love to do their portraits when they came out for a long weekend. Like I said before, seeing a familiar face in my adopted state brings back lots of nostalgic feelings and it was such a treat to have her and Matt out to our ranch during their short stint here. Despite the cold, we had a wonderful time shooting and catching up, even standing on a dirt road after the sun went down and we were chilled to the bone!
Lindsay and Matt, it was SO wonderful to see you guys! Thank you so much for planning a little stop at our home on your trip to Colorado. You guys are truly amazing together and we can’t wait to see you again!
Mike and Tay
Watching a couple go from “boyfriend / girlfriend” to engaged, is one of the most magical, indescribable moments we get to witness. When Jon contacted us a couple months ago to tell us about he and his girlfriend, Brittany, and their story, we were immediately on board with his proposal to marry her! These two fell in love in Winter Park, Colorado on one of their first dates together. Jon was teaching Brittany how to ski and said that their relationship immediately solidified after that first trip. He went on to tell us that they had been dating for three years and were coming to Colorado from Nebraska in February. It was there, at Winter Park, that Jon wanted to ask Brittany to be his wife. (Insert all the feels!) Despite a blown tire during their eight hour drive, Jon had his sites set on making this trip a memorable one!
You guys, this proposal was simply magical. We got to know Jon quite well over the last couple of months and knew this moment was going to be perfect for Brittany. As he lead her to a beautiful spot amidst the Rocky Mountains, he distracted her with a selfie to get her to take her gloves and goggles off, and immediately following got down onto one knee. Brittany’s reaction was amazing as she giggled, squealed, and grabbed her new fiancé for a huge hug! Brittany and Jon, it was an honor to be a part of this moment with you! We are so excited for your incredible journey into marriage and can’t wait to hear about wedding day plans! Read more about their love story and enjoy their wintery Colorado proposal photos below!
Mike and Tay
• How did the two of you meet?
“We had mutual friends watching a Husker football game in the Railyard in Lincoln, Nebraska, so we had both been invited to join. It was really crowded, so we didn’t notice each other at first, then a random girl came up from behind, wrapped her arms around Jon and yelled, “Scott!” and we all turned around to see the astonished and puzzled look on Jon’s face, and the girl run off, likely mortified. So our first conversation stemmed from him clarifying his name was in fact Jon, not Scott.”
• We know Winter Park holds a special place in your heart. What history do you have here?
Brittany : “A few months after we met, we went to Winter Park with a couple of friends. Jon is an experienced skier and grew up skiing at Winter Park with his family. I had never skied before but Jon thought he could teach me, and for some reason I thought that would be a great idea. When we arrived, Jon and I went to the rental shop at the base to pick up my gear. The guy at the rental counter asked if I’d ever skied before, to which I answered, “No,” with a laugh that hopefully masked my terror. He asked if I needed lessons, and Jon and I both told him Jon would be teaching me. I’ll never forget the look on that guy’s face as he cautioned us of the many fights and breakups he’d seen on the mountain when significant others assumed the role of “ski instructor.” This should’ve made me second guess our plans, especially since we had only known each other a few months, but I fully trusted him.
Nothing can adequately describe how terrified I was going up the lift for the first time, and I seriously contemplated being “that person” who rode the ski lift back down. But, Jon calmly coached me through the entire run, skiing backwards the whole way as he broke down every component of how to turn and stop. Even though I was scared out of my mind and my hip flexors were on fire from snow plowing, he never once showed frustration. We were able to turn something scary and stressful into something humorous, and by the end of that first day, I knew he was the one for me, and we’ve been coming back ever since.”
• Brittany, what were you thinking when Jon started to lead you to take a photo and when did you realize what was about to happen?
“We knew the weather was perfect, and Jon seemed pretty antsy waiting for the lift, which I attributed to his excitement for a full day of skiing. On the ride up, he casually mentioned we should take a picture at the top before the day got away from us and we forgot. Once we got to the top for our first run, we went off to the side and I figured we were in a good place for a picture. Then he told me we should take off our skis and walk up a little higher. I was so confused because this was taking time from skiing, and it seemed like an awful lot of hassle for a selfie, but I went along with it. Then he asked me to take the picture because “it was a better angle,” which conveniently required me to take off my left glove. I just kept thinking, this is odd, but tried not to read into it. I took a quick picture then as I handed him his phone, he paused and gave me a look, and at that point I knew. He held both of my hands, looked me in the eyes, and I think teared up before he even started speaking.”
• Jon, how were you feeling the morning of your proposal?
“I was super excited the weather looked better than it had been the day before. I was also super anxious to get to the spot and also nervous that I would somehow slip up in the hours before and give the surprise away.”
• What do you two remember most about your proposal?
Jon : “Brittany’s answer, ‘Yes!’ Then I remember thinking to myself just don’t drop the ring because I was kneeling in a couple feet of fresh powder. The rest was a little bit of a blur.”
Brittany :”I remember being so excited I could barely contain myself. As he was down on one knee in the snow, it was all I could do to keep myself from wrapping him in a big hug, which I knew would likely cause us both to fall into the snow, but I didn’t know where the ring was and I didn’t want to lose it in the powder, so I kept my composure the best I could! I then heard a camera snapping away, and I remember saying, “Oh look at that! That nice lady caught all of this on camera!” Then Jon told me he hired Taylor and her husband (Mike)! So cool!”
• What did you guys do for the rest of the day?
We stopped at the lodge and immediately called our parents and siblings to share the news, then we skied the rest of the day because the weather was gorgeous! At the end of the day, we left the mountain and headed to Fort Collins to surprise Jon’s grandma, aunt and uncle. We even caught the end of the Super Bowl before crashing for the night.
• Jon, where did you get Brittany’s ring?
“I had the ring custom made at Sartor Hamann in Lincoln, Nebraska, which is also where Brittany’s parents bought their rings 33 years ago.”
There is just something about high school love that is so sweet, innocent, and captivating. The pressures of dating, starting college, and moving are challenging in their own respect. However, finding the one who will go headstrong into all of those challenges with you, and ask for your hand in marriage, is a whole other element! Haydn and Jake met while they were in high school and when they started thinking of college, they were both relieved to know that they had found the one who would go through all of life’s challenges with them. “When you are dating, there are two options – to continue the relationship and eventually get married or to break up. Once Jake and I started talking about the fact that we wanted to stay together in college, despite being at separate universities, we knew that we wanted to spend the rest of our lives together.”
During their engagement shoot, these two were all smiles, giggles, and cuddles while the snow flurries blew around us at Sapphire Point in Breckenridge, overlooking Lake Dillon. The sincere love that they share is not only refreshing, but encouraging to watch as they finish college, move in for the first time together, and plan their 2017 summer wedding. Haydn and Jake, we are so excited that you have found each other and we absolutely can’t wait to be there with you as you say, “We do!” next summer! Congratulations!
Tay and Mike
How did you two meet? “Jake and I met in high school – well, not as much “met” as texted. We had a history class together our junior year and he texted me for the first time on November 28, 2012. Since then we have never gone a day without each other.”
Tell us about your first date! “We went to Red Robin to eat dinner on our first date. I got a half of a salad and Jake got mini burgers (which is definitely not what we would normally get – we were just nervous). We ended up having a great time and talking like crazy!”
When did you know you wanted to marry each other? “When you are dating, there are two options – to continue the relationship and eventually get married or to break up. Once Jake and I started talking about the fact that we wanted to stay together in college, despite being at separate universities, we knew that we wanted to spend the rest of our lives together.”
How did Jake propose? “Jake and I went to the Turks and Caicos Islands this summer. One night before dinner Jake and I went on our nightly walk along the beach and when we got to a sandbar he told me to walk away from him. When I turned around he was on one knee asking me to marry him. I was crying like crazy and after taking in the moment finally said, “YES!”
What has been the most fun element of wedding planning? “We loved being able to pick the venue together. It is such an amazing place and we cannot wait to get married there!”
What’s a fun quirk you love about the other? “Jake and I have the ability to have fun together no matter what the situation. We don’t care what is going on around us as long as we together we are having a great time!”
What are you most looking forward to on your wedding day? “We are most looking forward to seeing each other for the first time on our wedding day. That will be the time when it all sinks in and we will be able to begin an amazing day where we say, “I do,” and start our lives together.”
We are totally believers of fate, and that you’re meant to cross paths with certain people in life. When we received an e-mail from Kari and Nick about their Granby Ranch Wedding next year in Granby, Colorado, we were so excited! We had the pleasure of having already met and worked with Kari at Jenny and Chris’s awesome wedding in 2017. With such a fun group of friends and family at that wedding, we were so thrilled to have Kari and Nick reach out to us, as we already knew they were great and we were in for an amazing day with them!
Their engagement shoot totally affirmed what we already knew…that they were a great couple totally made for each other! We are so thrilled to be a part of their wedding day next year. Thank you so much, Kari and Nick, and congratulations you two! We’re counting down the days to celebrate with you!
• How did you and two meet? “At a bar downtown. Nick was playing pool with his friends and my friend Sonja and I thought they were cute and so we asked if we could play them in the next game. WE SUCKED! But we had a great time.”
• Tell us about your first date! “We had a lot of dinners at my old apartment when we first started dating, but one of our first dates was a Rockies game. We had a lot of fun getting to know each other, we were young in our careers and pretty care-free. One of our first times hanging out Nick opened my car door. That was pretty memorable for me, because I had never been out with such a gentlemen and I was taken off guard, but also very excited.”
• When did you know you wanted to marry each other? “Nick and I had a somewhat long distance relationship for the first 2 or so years. He lived in Casper, WY for his job and I lived here in Denver. He had a 2 weeks on, 1 week off schedule, so he would drive down here every 2 weeks and stay with me. At that time I knew that Nick was a very determined and committed man. In the summer of the second year of us dating, my roommate informed me that she was going to be moving out. I couldn’t afford a place on my own and was contemplating what the next move would be. Although Nick was still technically living in WY, we knew we would live together once he could find work in Denver. Nick offered to co-sign and lease and pay half the rent in our first house in the Highlands in Denver. He gave up his apartment in Wyoming and moved in with a friend for a cheaper rent. He paid 2 rents just to make sure that I was taken care of!! I think I always knew Nick was “the one”, but that life move proved that Nick would do anything to support his family and to put me first and I felt the same about him. So, at that point it was just a matter of time 🙂 ”
• How did Nick propose? “My family takes an annual camping trip to Turquoise Lake in Leadville. We hangout, take walks, let Bridger swim in the lake and relax on the “beach”. We had just gotten up there, ate lunch and went down to the water to throw sticks for Bridger. We were reading magazines, drinking beer, just having fun. My sister, mom and dad were all there. I got up to throw a stick for Bridger and when I turned around Nick was on one knee with a beautiful ring. It was perfectly simple and totally us.”
• What has been the most fun element of wedding planning? “I actually think wedding planning has been kind of stressful…So much to do! For me though, picking out the venue with Nick was fun. Nick has to work long hours, so anything we get to do for the wedding together, instead of a part via text, has been the most fun for me.”
• What are you most looking forward to on your wedding day? “Having all of our family and friends together in one place.”
What more is there to love about these two than their adorable dog, amazing relationship, hilarious personalities, and genuine hearts? Let me tell you, from the first time we sat down to drinks with Holly and Ricky, we knew they were insanely awesome and that we wanted to be apart of their Colorado wedding next year at Deer Creek Valley Ranch. After nearly twelve years together, these two are tying the knot in 2017 and it was such a joy to hear their story about their love (especially in middle school), the move they made together and the life they’re building in Colorado, about their jobs, and especially about their dog, Sara! When Holly and Ricky answered some questions about their story for us, Mike and I were literally in tears from laughing so hard! I honestly don’t think I’ve laughed harder while reading our couples responses. Their conflicting (but oddly similar) storylines of how their relationship progressed from the 8th grade to their proposal to wedding planning, are perfect for these two. We are so thrilled and honored to get to be a part of their amazing day with them! Thank you two so much for sharing this time with us!
Mike and Tay
Holly: “We met in 8th grade! He tried to chat with me on AIM and I thought he was a different guy so I actually ignored him….eventually he came up to me and asked why I wouldn’t talk to him? It was so cute. He says we met in 7th grade science class, but I swear I would have remembered those 2000s frosted blonde tips anywhere!”
Ricky: “We DID meet in science class, I sat one row back from her! And we met in the quad and a friend said we should date because we were both tall. And she did also think I was a different Ricky, obviously I was the cool one.”
• Tell us about your first date!
Holly : “Oh geez, for our first date our parents had to drop us off! We met at the movies at the mall and watched Shrek 2. He wouldn’t hold my hand so I was pretty sure he didn’t like me.”
Ricky : “I couldn’t believe a girl that pretty would want to go on a date with me, I was so shy that I was afraid to grab her hand until we were leaving.”
Ricky: “It was awesome! We were in Disneyland in Paris, I already had an idea that she knew it was coming (I mean we’d been together for 11 years at this point…) so I kept leading her to really romantic spots and pausing, only to ask her if she wanted to go get ice cream. I could see the anticipation building up inside of her so I finally took her down to an secluded spot next to the Castle and proposed to her there. She didn’t say yes! All she did was cry and nod, don’t let her tell you she said yes, it’s a lie.”
Holly : “We were in Europe on vacation and he had made it very clear nothing was going to happen, despite my probably annoying hints. Also, he let me pack all of the bags, even his backpack so I was pretty convinced it wasn’t going to happen. When it finally did on that stormy rainy day in Disneyland Paris, nothing could have been more perfect (and I DID say yes!)”
• When did you know you wanted to marry each other?
Holly : “I’ve always known I wanted to marry him, but I think when it finally felt real was when I told him I was going to law school anywhere in the country other than our home state and he said he would go anywhere in the world with me. It was the sweetest moment of true love and support for me.”
Ricky : “I don’t know how to answer this, I’ve just always known she was the one.”
As a couple, Mike and I are very adventurous spirits. On any given day you can find us pursuing some type of adventure on two wheels, two legs, four legs, four wheels, and with our dogs or other furry friends. Needless to say, our adventurous couples we have the honor of working with have our hearts! When we first met Carla and Nick for coffee in the fantastic mountain town of Ouray, Colorado, we immediately hit it off with them. Their love to adventure almost instantly got us swapping stories of our motorcycle road trips (they’ve got a seriously sweet record!), our love of hiking, Jeeping in the San Juans, making plans for our dogs happiness in hiking and food, and eventually, the amazing adventures of a wedding day.
These two are hard core Coloradans! Although they’re not natives, you’d be easily fooled. Their wedding next summer is set to take place at Top of the Pines in Ouray with their reception at the Secret Garden downtown. We were so excited just to plan their engagement shoot with them! Their suggestions for fun and adventurous places had us both totally giddy with excitement. When they decided they wanted to meet at Silver Jack Reservoir, we were stoked. Mike has explored that area quite a bit, but it’s very rare that we get folks who want to travel so far for their portraits. We’ll let images speak for themselves and allow Carla and Nick to share their story with y’all. Congratulations again you two! We are so stoked for your mountain wedding next summer!
Mike and Tay
• How did you two meet? “I (Carla) was working at a company in Tampa, Florida and Nick was brought in as a contractor to help out on one of our projects. We would grab coffee together almost every morning and we immediately hit it off. It wasn’t long before we started chatting after work hours even staying up until 5 in the morning sometimes!”
• Tell us about your first date! “Nick planned a day in Safety Harbor, Florida and kept it all a secret ahead of time. He took me to Philippe Park and then we grabbed dinner and drinks at this delicious place called Southern Fresh (southern food is one of my favorites). From there we grabbed ice cream and explored the city talking about any and everything.”
• When did you know you wanted to marry each other? “We both knew back when we were just friends. It was already a topic of discussion the first week of dating haha. When you know, you know!”
• How did Nick propose? “We recently started getting canvas prints of my pictures to decorate our house with and Nick said it would be awesome if we had some sunrise shots from Yankee Boy Basin, one of our favorite areas. That Saturday we woke up at 3:30am and Jeeped up to this amazing lookout spot to wait for the sun to rise while sipping on hot chocolates that Nick made. As soon as the sun peaked over the mountains, Nick said he wanted to get a self-timed picture of us. Once I started the timer and stepped in front of the camera, he got down on one knee and asked me to marry him! Now we have an amazing picture of the moment that we plan to get printed.”
• What has been the most fun element of wedding planning? “Getting to do it together! Thankfully we both have the same taste with everything so brainstorming ideas together has been something we look forward to doing at the end of our work day.”
• What are you most looking forward to on your wedding day? “Marrying my best friend and getting our families together to celebrate!”
You guys. I wish so much that we could bottle up the love and connection this amazing couple has and share it with the world…we’d seriously be bajillionaires. We first met Elizabeth and Jared for coffee in August and immediately fell in love with them and their story and their vision for their wedding day. We knew the stakes were high as they had big plans for their wedding photography and wanted to hire the right photographers, so we were humbled just to be in the runnings with some of Colorado’s best. Needless to say, we were completely thrilled and honored when they asked us to be a part of their engagement season and wedding day! These high school sweethearts have two of the biggest hearts we’ve ever seen and come on…are they not two of the most photogenic folks ever?! I seriously felt like we were shooting a Taylor Swift music video with them. Their sense of adventure (and willingness to follow me into the river at Lair O’the Bair Park) and photo ideas they brought with them was so refreshing. Their connection and adoration for each other is so apparent in how the love and respect the other. We are so elated to have been welcomed into their lives and be given the opportunity to document this incredible time in their lives! Congratulations, Elizabeth and Jared! We love you guys and are so excited for you!
Mike and Tay
Jared picked me up on Friday evening, and we went to Capital Grille, the restaurant where we had our first anniversary dinner. Dinner was delicious, but I could tell that Jared was nervous about something. But again, I played it off as nothing significant. Towards the end of the meal, Jared asked me if I wanted to go do something else, either see the Christmas lights at the Botanic Gardens or go see the lights at the zoo. Even though it was just barely starting to snow, he wanted to make the most of his time in town and this was something spontaneous and fun. I didn’t know about this plan prior to being picked up for dinner, so I wasn’t as prepared for the weather as I would’ve liked to be… but Jared was very persistent about going to see lights, saying that he only comes to town every so often, it’s a holiday week, etc. etc. I even put “watching a movie on our couch” back on the table once more, but he didn’t take the bait. I began thinking that on the off-chance that this was the engagement, I shouldn’t be too stubborn, so I decided to give in, and sure enough, we journeyed to the lights.
We were going through the path of lights, and we stopped at a point by a small gazebo, just right off the path. It was a pretty quiet night, just starting to snow, he got down on one knee and asked me to marry him. I said “Yes!” and the rest is history.”
What has been the most fun element of wedding planning?