Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Moving On.

Well Blogger. It's time. You've been very good to me over the years, and we had a great run together but it's time for new things.

www.blog.bethlaurren.com

Monday, April 1, 2013

Amanda and Levi :: Engaged!

"Kiss me once, then kiss me twice
Then kiss me once again
It's been a long, long time"
~Bing Crosby


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I have a best friend, Ashley. She has a little sister, Amanda. Amanda met the love of her life, Levi. And as all perfect love stories go, Levi loves Amanda :)

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It was years of knowing each other, and many years of a crush....many games of Words with Friends. And then it became long phone conversations and finally....finally a first date.

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It was the beginning of a forever love story. And not long after, Levi proposed on their favorite bridge - the one they loved to drive out to, and get out to dance.

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"You'll never know how many dreams
I dreamed about you
so kiss me once, then kiss me twice
then kiss me once again"


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Levi, Amanda and I met up last Saturday for their engagement session and God's smile was on us - it was a break in weeks of 10 degrees and drear with a surprising 40 degrees and full sun. It could not have been more perfect! Amanda and Levi were in love, there was sun, and it was warm.

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These two are....darling. Excitement about their life together shimmers around them in the way they walk together holding hands, in the way Levi smiles and in the way Amanda bounces.

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Love.

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They talk about how hard the distance is right now with Levi at school, and how great it will be to finally say goodnight in person, and not on the phone.

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There are wedding plans and excitement, don't get me wrong, but these two are so focused on the life together after that.

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So focused on what forever means to each of them.

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So focused on keeping God as their center, their anchor, and celebrating the life He gives them together.

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Amanda and Levi - I am so excited to be a part of your wedding.

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At the end of every shoot I tell the couple "this is it! make it count!" and utterly adore the results every.time.

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CLICK HERE to see the slideshow!



Thursday, March 21, 2013

Liz and Marat :: Married!

These two. I just adore them. They fit like two extremely intelligent puzzle pieces together. Liz laughs with her whole self, and Marat joins in. He takes care of the small details, while she reminds him of the big picture. They take turns sharing parts of a story until you've heard the whole thing. They pause and look at each other to silently relay a thought and then carry on with the conversation around them. He stands by her and looks proud to have such a vivacious, open, loving woman next to him, and she watches, encourages, and supports him while standing very close to his side.

Their wedding day was a culmination of months of planning, several new homes, a lot of family gathering and many friends surrounding them. It was a wonderful thing to be a part of and to watch these two be surrounded by so many. The day dawned bitingly cold, but filled with a room of laughing attendants as hair and make up were expertly handled by Nichole and Elsie at Sharon Daniel Salon, dresses were donned, and excitement filled the air. The day only got better from there, culminating in dancing until all hours of the morning in celebration.

Liz and Marat thank you so much for the opportunity to get to know you over these last few months. I wish you both a wonderful life together full of love and laughter!

(CLICK HERE to see the slideshow!)

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Gorgeous bouquets by A Perfect Petal.

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This is always one of my very favorite "getting ready" moments - the bride finally putting on her wedding dress, surrounded by her closets friends helping her final preparations to be a bride. I just love it!

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Given how early it gets dark in Chicago at this time of year, Liz and Marat decided to do a first look and get all there photos wrapped up before the ceremony. Another moment I love during the day :)

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The Kettubah signing - a beautiful moment and seeped so in so much rich tradition and purpose.

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Married!!

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We minimized our outdoor time and started indoors at Friendship Park Conservatory

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But Liz, Marat and they're fabulous wedding party were totally game for the cold and wind, and allowed for some gorgeous light and snow photos!! It was soooo cold - I can't tell you how much this group pulled it together for these photos!!!

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I love Liz. I just want to constantly hug her! She is such a sweet spirit, with this strength and determination mixed in.

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Marat my friend, you clean up well ;)

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Love.

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La Mirage did a fabulous job hosting their reception - complete with an amazing amount of beautiful food!

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The gorgeous cake by La Briola bakery.

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Some fabulous toasts with amazing reactions from the bride and groom.

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Liz elected to have her best friend be her Man of Honor and I just love this relationship. There is such a kinship between these two that was evident all day long - from the stories passed around getting ready in the morning, to the way he steadfastly froze outside with us to help move Liz around for photos, and the way he hovered during the day just in case Liz needed something....anything.

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The dance floor was moving all night thanks to the combined work of DJ Harsh and live band Alexander Starobinets.

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Additional credit to Precision Sound and Lighting for the fabulous lighting, and Go Wedding Video for capturing the day on video!