Engagement: Tricia & Jill

From Jill (in the yellow dress): Tricia and I fell in love online, then long-distance, then from a much shorter long-distance, then—finally—together. I can’t wait for us to fall even deeper in love as a married couple, then as grandmothers (we have 11 children between us!), then as retirees, and then as world-travelers. A girl can dream, right?

I surprised Tricia with a ring and a proposal over her birthday weekend. The first surprise consisted of flying her daughter in to celebrate her birthday. I had also planned a brunch with our closest friends, who were all aware of the true purpose of the birthday festivities.

As we gathered around the table, lingering over mimosas, I gave Tricia a gift in the cutest owl-shaped bag (Owl always love you!). Somehow, the fact that each of our friends and some of our kids were filming the birthday gift-giving didn’t alert Tricia to my intentions. I think she finally caught on some time during my heartfelt (if ill-rehearsed) proposal.

After she put on her ring (filled with diamonds from my grandmother’s wedding ring) and cried on my shoulder, I finally asked if that meant she was giving me a “yes.” 

I was initially unsure whether we would have a formal wedding or not, but we are now in the throes of planning one because, as Tricia wisely noted, so many couples who came before us were denied that opportunity. We asked my oldest daughter, Song, to take these engagement photographs as part of the wedding planning. Several of our children were also with us on the shoot. They made faces, danced around, and otherwise tried to keep us laughing and distracted from the hot Texas day.

We truly enjoyed the photo shoot, which took place steps from our wedding venue. Thanks to all the lovely couples who have shared their photos here and inspired us to share too.

(As mentioned, we laughed a lot during our photo shoot, but the final photo we’re sharing caused us to laugh during the photo review process: it looks like a stock photo of Tricia counseling Jill about buying life insurance!)

Photos courtesy of Song Images.

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Event Credits

Location: Fort Worth, TexasPhotography: Songbird Weddings: http://www.songbirdweddings.com/
Posted in Lesbian Engagement Shoot, Real Wedding Inspiration, Region, Texas, United States | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Bride & Broom Revisited: Deborah & Melissa

If you’re a long-time visitor to the site, you’ll probably remember Deborah and Melissa’s wedding, which featured a kilt, a Wiccan handfasting, and lots of amazing Tarot-themed details. Just last week, the couple celebrated their third wedding anniversary, and Deborah wrote to us with an update!

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Give us a life update! Have there been any major milestones since we heard from you last? (New houses, new babies, new brownie recipes to share…)

Our lives have changed so much for the better, it’s amazing. My son moved into his own place. I’d been chafing in my dull suburb for a long time, but I sure didn’t want to buy a new home for the three of us. After he moved, I left the door open for him for a year, and then started fixing up the house to put on the market. We found the perfect place, a dream apartment in the “Historic Downtown” neighborhood of Jersey City! (You’ve actually featured an engagement shoot in my neighborhood.) So, we went from a suburban townhouse near a mall and not much else, where we were usually the only same-sex couple within sight for weeks at a time, to a trendy, diverse urban neighborhood, and we couldn’t be happier.

We also sold both the old cars and got a brand new Subaru (oh, the cliché!)—only one car needed in the city. We honeymooned in St. Croix, and visited Brazil a year later. The following year we were too busy moving to travel, so now we’re figuring out what our next trip will be.

Honeymoon

What is your favorite thing about being married?

I love both the emotional and practical things about sharing my life. Finances are so much easier, after fifteen years as a single mother! I love making decorating decisions (and then implementing them) together. I love a sounding board. I love snuggles. I love someone to pick up the slack in the house. All of the things that mean “partnership.”

What do you fight about?

Our communication styles are really different. Sometimes we fight about whether or not we’re having a fight, or why we’re having a fight, which is just about as insane as it sounds. I’m a talk-everything-out type, she’s a silently-think-it-over type. When we do it my way, she feels emotionally flooded, and when we do it her way, I feel bottled up and frustrated. We’re still finding a path through that.

What advice would you give to people who have just gotten married?

I don’t think I’ve ever heard better advice than Dan Savage’s “price of admission.”

What do you like best about your spouse?

She’s smarter than me. She’s so smart. I love bragging that I am married to a history professor, I think that is so cool. She has a long list of amazing qualities, but that’s my number one.

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Describe a typical day in 5 words or less.

Work Work Eat TV Work

What is one thing you and your partner do to relax?

We love going to the movies, or curling up with Netflix at home.

What is the best wedding gift you received?

Cards Against Humanity with three expansion packs!

Brazil

What moment from your wedding still stands out the most in your mind?

So many! Melissa pretending to steal the wedding cake, our first dance to “This Must Be the Place,” my first dance with my son to “Ca Plane Por Moi”, my son diving across the room and catching the bouquet, Melissa singing to me (we had karaoke), watching the Perseid meteor shower as the reception wound down.

If you had to compare your marriage to a food or animal, what would you choose and why?

We’re like a housecat—a little overfed, a little lazy, but content and really, really cute.

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Brides Revisited is a series in which we check back in with the couples who’ve appeared on our site in the past. If you and your one true person are interested in being featured, we’d love to hear from you—whether you call yourselves brides, brooms, spouses, or something else entirely!

Posted in Brides Revisited, Post Wedding Life | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Engagement: Anna & Sarah

It may not be a bicycle built for two, but we still can’t resist a shoot with a bicycle!

From Tracy and Mark, Anna & Sarah’s photographers: We met Anna & Sarah at a bridal show, and had so much fun hanging out with them and their pups at the park for their engagement session. With a blanket and a bicycle, the rest fell in to place…

Photos courtesy of This Is You.

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Event Credits

Location: Atlanta, GAPhotography: This is You by Mark & Tracy
Posted in Credits, Georgia, Lesbian Engagement Shoot, Photography, Real Wedding Inspiration, Region, United States | Tagged , , | 2 Responses

Wedding: Mariah & Natacha

From Mariah: Our wedding day was very special for many reasons. A big one was the location. We were fortunate enough to get married at Meech Lake, in the backyard of my childhood home, right on the water. This really added to the intimate outdoors/nature theme that we wanted. My partner and I were able to get away for a few minutes after the ceremony by escaping in a canoe. Being able to have a few private moments floating in the middle of the lake to just reflect on our union was priceless. We got engaged on a canoe trip, so it was fitting that there was a canoe on our wedding day.

We had unbelievable support from our family and friends who helped us with many DIY projects that added a very warm and personal touch to our setting. My brothers hiked into the woods to find birch logs and together built our archway that we were married under. It was a labour of love. We decided to have an open bar. In the eyes of our guests, best decision ever. We still hear about it! We were very fortunate to have found vendors and services with people who really took the time to hear what we wanted and who delivered exactly what we hoped for—from our awesome DJ who kept the party going late into the night to our awesome photographers who climbed onto the roof of the house to get that perfect group shot. It made the day run smoothly and provided us with everlasting memories.

Photos courtesy of Black Lamb Photography.

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Event Credits

Attire: Alliance Bridal: www.alliancebridal.comCakes and Dessert: Claude's Wedding Cakes: https://sites.google.com/site/claudesweddingcakesCatering: Family and FriendsDate: 08/01/2015Florist: DIY by FriendsLocation: Gatineau, QC, CanadaMusic: In Touch Media: www.intouchmedia.caOfficiant: Sheila Winter Wallace of All Seasons Weddings: www.allseasonsweddings.comOther: Makeup: Amanda Wanamaker: www.facebook.com/Makeup-Design-By-Amanda-Wanamaker-583288591744883Photography: Black Lamb Photography: www.blacklambphotography.comStationery: Vista Print
Posted in Attire, Attire, Cakes and Dessert, Canada, Credits, Dress + Dress, Lesbian Real Wedding, Lesbian Wedding, Music, Officiant, Other, Photography, Real Wedding Inspiration, Region, Rustic, Style, Two Dress Wedding | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Engagement: Kaysey & Jacque

From Kaysey: Jacque and I met and fell in love in graduate school in the fall of 2013. Almost three years, one dog, one cat, and three apartments later we are getting married on October 1st (stay tuned for wedding pictures)! We had our engagement photos taken at a popular picnic/sunset gazing spot called the Skidmore Bluffs in Portland, OR, where Jacque proposed to me last summer. We wanted to capture a unique and meaningful part of this beautiful city where we met and fell madly, wildy in love.

Photos courtesy of Shaylee King

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Event Credits

Location: Portland, ORPhotography: Shaylee King (http://www.kshayleephotos.com)
Posted in Credits, Lesbian Engagement Shoot, Oregon, Photography, Real Wedding Inspiration, Region, United States | Tagged , , | 2 Responses

Wedding: Joni & Tammy

From Joni: Tammy is on staff and I’m a volunteer chaplain at the church where we first met four years ago. That meant that our wedding had to happen (conveniently, I might add!) at our church. Our minister asked us when we sat down with him to use three words to describe how we’d like our ceremony to feel. We answered with sacred, communal and lighthearted. We were certainly blessed to have experienced an infinite amount of each of those on our big day.

Despite Tammy being an introvert we opted for a large wedding, especially since our relatives alone added up to over fifty guests. Our guest list wound up hovering at around 125, and at one point went to 150. We had our four closest friends stand with us and opted to call all of them “friends of honor.” (Feel free to steal the phrase instead of using the traditional titles, if you like.)  We also left them to choose their own attire, as long as it was fitting for the wedding theme. None of them shopped together, yet all of them looked perfect! The night before the wedding we gave them all a necklace with a silver bar engraved with “Soulpod” on the front and our wedding date on the back.

Our ceremony was performed by our minister and his wife, who is a dear friend of Tammy’s.  We knew that they’d be reading from our recent book. (Tammy is a poet and I am photographer and we’d recently published a book of our work.) However, we didn’t review the ceremony prior to our wedding. We had no idea what poems would be read or what our vows were going to be, as we’d left them up to Steve, our minister. He told a beautiful story that included a mention of a white squirrel that had been seen on the grounds several times over the weeks leading up to the wedding, and our vows were beautiful, uncomplicated, and perfect for us.

There was so much support and love in the room with us. We chose to escort each other down the aisle, and a spontaneous round of applause erupted when we made our entrance. That was a surprise. Everyone was so supportive and full of joy.

Over and over, the response we got from guests was the attention to detail they noticed during the ceremony and reception. We like to think it was a byproduct of the love we put into every detail.  And there were lots of details. We lovingly picked out just about everything a guest would touch or see. We shopped for and bought mismatched dishes, silverware, napkins, water glasses and mason jars for every guest. The vases for the flowers, the table décor, the serving dishes, the decorations. Tammy has a background in design so she did the invitations, programs and the menu, along with our guest gift, a book full of our favorite love quotes. I’m a former theatre director, so I enlisted the help of my theatre friends to do the decorating, which among other things, involved hoisting a bunch of bunting to the top of a very high pavilion the morning of the wedding.

Both Tammy and I wanted a vintage feel and I was adamant that the experience be as close to having a picnic in your great grandmother’s back yard as possible. For me this meant family style dining using real dishes and playing yard games. The dishes happened. The family style dinner happened: fried chicken, macaroni and cheese, mashed potatoes, and not just cake but a pie bar. The yard games, though, got rained out. In fact, the Monday before our wedding, the weather called for not just rain, but possible hail and tornadoes. Even the covered pavilion couldn’t withstand that. On Wednesday we met and crafted a plan for moving the whole event inside. Luckily, the weather held off and didn’t get too turbulent until the day after our wedding. It did rain on our big day, but it always seemed to stop just when we needed it to. Oh, and the white squirrel paid us a visit, right as everyone sat down to dinner.

There were a gazillion beautiful moments. Every moment was beautiful is more like it. As the sanctuary doors closed before we entered and the two of us had a private moment to talk to each other I asked Tammy if she was nervous.  She said no. And neither was I. It’s a remarkably beautiful experience to feel so clear and comfortable and at ease about love and commitment. That’s the way it’s supposed to be. Full of ease and grace and joy.

Photos courtesy of Brenda Ladd Photography.

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Remember Joni & Tammy’s clever DIY shoot last fall? It’s always fun to look back at engagement photos!

Event Credits

Catering: Food by Chef Alvaro (eatoutin.com); Bartending & Serving by Austin Community College (www.austincc.edu/hospmgmt)Florist: Arranged by a friend; Sourced from Austin Flower Company (austinflowers.com)Location: Austin, TexasPhotography: Brenda Ladd PhotographyVenue: Unity Church of the Hills
Posted in Attire, Credits, DIY, Lesbian Real Wedding, Lesbian Wedding, Pants + Dress, Photography, Real Wedding Inspiration, Region, Style, suit, Texas, United States, Wedding Attire | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Engagement: Amy & Sarah

From Patrick and Vanessa, Amy and Sarah’s photographers: Amy and Sarah are the BEST! We met them at a bridal show and just hit it off. You know when you meet people, and you just get the feels that you mesh so well? Within 20 minutes we were all bonding over T-Rex tattoos, baseball, and hugging! Amy and Sarah were such a find for us- they are the right mix of hysterical, kind-hearted, and genuine people. Sarah LOVES baseball, specifically the Indians, so we rented out Progressive Field. We had a fun morning shooting their engagement session in the stadium and around downtown Cleveland.

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Event Credits

Location: Cleveland, OHPhotography: ZeefotoVenue: Progressive Field
Posted in Credits, Lesbian Engagement Shoot, ohio, Photography, Real Wedding Inspiration, Region, United States, Venue | Tagged , | Leave a comment
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