Posts Tagged ‘wedding planning’

Traditional Indian Wedding at the Grand Geneva Resort
((Avanti + Sanjeev))

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Happy Tuesday, Sassy Chicago Couples! We wanted to pass along this gorgeous Hindu wedding that took place at Grand Geneva Resort & Spa in May of this year.

((Avanti + Sanjeev)) hosted 400 guests at Grand Geneva, complete with the groom’s entrance on horseback and Sunday brunch with traditional Indian dishes. Knowing they wanted to hold their wedding at a destination close to their families in Milwaukee and Skokie, Grand Geneva was the perfect fit, especially because both ((Avanti + Sanjeev)) spent winters skiing at the resort.

"I wanted a modern and elegant wedding ceremony and a reception that was vibrant yet romantic," ~ Avanti said. Loving the color purple and all it signifies ~ regality, passion, beauty, and grace, ((Avanti + Sanjeev)) teamed up with florist + decorator, Yanni Design Studio to help them achieve their mission. "We used an all glass "mundap" (altar in Hindu weddings), which felt modern and elegant. The lighting they used for the reception, along with the large dramatic floral centerpieces created a romantic and lively evening." 

((Avanti + Sanjeev)) also incorporated many Hindu wedding ceremony traditions in their big day including: the groom riding in on a horse during his procession, the bride's family "stealing" the groom's shoes, the bride and groom reciting ancient Hindu scriptures and obtaining elder family members' blessings during the ceremony. "We had few speeches during the reception as the focus was on our guests enjoying a full traditional Indian buffet meal and dancing to high energy Indian and 90's music until 1 a.m." ~ Avanti noted. 

In lieu of favors, the bride and groom made donations to charities very close to their hearts – the Global Foundation for Children with Hearing Loss and the Anti-Cruelty Society. For guests to enjoy their inner silliness, ((Avanti + Sanjeev)) also had a photo booth. After the reception, guests enjoyed the after party, which was held outdoor on a terrace. ((Avanti + Sanjeev's)) family + friends ordered pizza, sat around a cozy fire, and enjoyed the gorgeous views of the resort. 

We had so much fun browsing through their photos + had such a hard time choosing among the beautiful shots. Browse through photos of their "I do's" provided by by Sarah Rae Photo ~ 

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~ Favorite Memory from the Day from Avanti  ~ 

"We loved exploring the unique spaces of the resort within our wedding day. For after ceremony photos, we spent time on the beautiful golf course and on the cozy Embers Terrace. Another favorite memory was having our after-party right on the Embers Terrace, where our friends and family enjoyed cocktails, late night pizza, and comfy benches around a raging fire outside, overlooking the golf course."

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~ Advice for Couples Currently Planning their Wedding ~ 

"It is so easy to get bogged down with details and strain relationships unnecessarily. My husband and I kept reminding ourselves that even if everything went wrong (and many things did, which only I noticed!) that at the end of the day, this was about us and the incredible journey we were commencing. The honeymoon was a nice light at the end of a long wedding planning tunnel. Remember to take time to enjoy each other during the process so you remember why you're doing this together."

geneva 4 Traditional Indian Wedding at the Grand Geneva Resort <br> ((Avanti + Sanjeev))

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Ceremony/Reception: Grand Geneva Resort & Spa, Lake Geneva, Wis. • Photography: Sara Rae Photography, Santa Cruz, Calif.  Catering: Gaylord Fine Indian Cuisine, Schaumburg • Cake: Grand Geneva Resort • Floral/Decorator/Mundap: Yanni Design Studio, Wheeling • Hair: Well Spa, Grand Geneva Resort • Makeup: Ania Tate, Bobbi Brown artist, Chicago • DJ: Shaadi Entertainment, Chicago • Photo Booth: Concept One Photo, Bloomingdale • Videographer: Highway 61 Films, Valparaiso • Wedding Coordinator: Roma Patel, Chicago • Invitations: Kellogg Printing Co., Monmouth •

5 Tips to Looking Great in Any Photo

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Unless you’re a world-renowned supermodel or an A-List actress, chances are you’re not used to being in front of a camera. You don’t spend your days jet-setting from photo shoot to photo shoot, and other than the daily glimpse of your Facebook profile picture, you don’t spend time studying photos of yourself, noting which angles work best and what lighting is most complimentary.

Now that you’re engaged, you and your spouse-to-be are the center of attention, which means you’ll be posing for dozens of photos leading up to the big day! This is the time to be confident and make the most of every moment, looking your very best every time that shutter snaps! Here are a few tips to help you get prepped.

Comfort is Key: This might seem like a no-brainer, but the more comfortable you’re feeling, the more comfortable you’ll appear in photos! If you’re a glamour girl who doesn’t leave the house without her stilettos, bring along a pair of flats if you’re taking photos in multiple spots. Otherwise, the discomfort you’re feeling will start to show through your facial expressions. Also, don’t forget to dress for the weather! If you’re planning an outdoor engagement session during the fall, for instance, bring along your warm coat so you can wear it in between shots.

01 Comfort is Key 5 Tips to Looking Great in Any Photo

Primp & Polish: Fresh, natural skin always looks better on camera, so opt for a matte powder or foundation that doesn’t contain any minerals or sparkles. And, unless you’re going to be shooting in the sun for a long period of time, skip the sunscreen, as it may create a washed out effect on camera. Last, but certainly not least, give your nails some extra love prior to your session. You want that engagement ring to look extra snazzy, don’t you?

02 Primp and Polish 5 Tips to Looking Great in Any Photo

Consider Color: The right hues can bring out your best features and enhance your natural coloring and complexion. Pops of color are perfect, but stay away from super busy prints and patterns. The photographer will want to focus on you and too much distraction can take away from the most important parts of the photo! A pro tip? Consider wearing a color that brings out your eyes!

03 Consider Color 5 Tips to Looking Great in Any Photo

Focus on Fashion: It’s important to put your best fashion foot forward, but try to avoid buying a brand new outfit before taking your photos. When you haven’t had time to get to know the outfit and love it, you might not like the way it looks in your photos. Aim for your favorite dress or that top you always get compliments on. The same goes for haircuts! When it doubt, wear something that never fails to make you feel fabulous.

04 Focus on Fashion 5 Tips to Looking Great in Any Photo

The Most Important Tip? Be yourself! It might sound cheesy or cliché, but you’ll look best in photos when you’re happy and enjoying every moment. Remember — you’re getting married to the love of your life. And nothing is more beautiful than that!

05 The Most Important Tip 5 Tips to Looking Great in Any Photo

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About George Street Photo

George Street Photo & Video is a wedding photography & videography company with a photojournalistic style and trained team of experts that have become the signature behind the breathtaking images they create for couples nationwide. They employ only the best talent – passionate, contemporary artists who have made a career of framing and capturing the natural beauty of emotional moments. They are proud to be part of this collection of moments that expresses the true spirit and story of a couple’s wedding day!

Real Life Fairytale ((Emily + Tony))

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((Emily + Tony)) are both Disney fans at heart, so when it came to choosing a wedding theme, they had no issues. “Our design was more of a modern wedding, but in our minds, it was a fairytale.” ~ Emily said. It all started with their proposal. Tony proposed to Emily at Disney World with a view overlooking Cinderella’s Castle, treating Emily like a princess.

After planning the majority of their wedding out of state, both ((Emily + Tony)) pulled in some of their Chicago favorites for their big day, like hitting many popular downtown Chicago landmarks for photo ops before the celebration began.

Guests were also treated with to-go bags of Garrett’s Popcorn + the pair entered their reception showing off their Chicago Blackhawks pride by wearing custom jerseys.

“Just being able to be surrounded by friends and family, all smiling, laughing, and having a great time was enough. We knew we wanted to have a wedding that everyone enjoyed and would be talking about forever, and I think we accomplished our goal!”

Emily added, “From start to finish, it was such an amazing experience. We visited Embassy Suites Lakefront several years ago before we got married, and I told Tony then that Embassy Suites Lakefront was where we were going to get married. We both love downtown and love the look + feel of Embassy Suite, so it was an easy decision.” 

With supportive and helpful vendors, the entire planning process was smooth for the couple. “We received so many compliments on our entire wedding thanks to our vendors, from the bigger details like location to the smaller ones like our colors or flowers.”

Becky Brown Photography provided us a glimpse into their classic Chicago wedding and couldn’t help to add that ((Emily + Tony’s)) wedding was “the perfect wedding day.” See a glimpse into their wedding day ~

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~ First Dance ~

“Our first dance song was to “Hey Pretty Girl” by Kip Moore. We debated between a lot of different songs, but once we heard this one, we knew. Tony had no doubt this was our song. I cry every time I hear it.”

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Ceremony & Reception: Embassy Suites Lakefront • Photographer: Becky Brown Photography • Florist: Flowers by Stem • Bridal Salon: Memories Bridal Shop & Evening Wear • Grooms + Groomsmen’s Attire: Men’s Wearhouse • DJ: Luxe Productions

10 Ways to Include the Groom in Wedding Planning

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220 10 Ways to Include the Groom in Wedding Planning

Most people, including the groom, accept the fact that a wedding is mostly about the bride and what she wants on their special day. But I'm seeing more often, the groom wanting to play a role in the planning of their wedding day. Heck, in some cases, "Groomzillas" have even surfaced! But if your groom isn't participating as much as you'd like, I've listed some ideas to make him feel special and join in the planning process.

1. The funniest thing to see at a wedding reception is a groom's cake that reflects the groom's personality or hobby. Make sure to include his favorite cake flavor. I had a groom's cake for a construction worker/Bears fan and the cake was a blue and orange hammer. Love it!

2. Have a couple's shower in which both the bride and groom are celebrated by family and friends.

3. Present a video at the reception with pictures, set with the groom's favorite music, of the groom's life leading up to wedding day.

4. I just had a bride do one of the most beautiful things I've seen in my 14 years as a planner. She wrote a poem for her groom and had it read aloud by one of her dear friends right before she walked down the aisle. I *heart* that idea!

5. If you are a dancer or singer, do a special tribute to your groom at the wedding reception, but PLEASE keep it classy.

6. When registering, include the groom and let him register for some of those fun man items!

7. Get the groom a sentimental pre-wedding gift or a massage the eve of the wedding.

8. You both should work with the band or DJ to make sure some of the groom's favorite songs are played during the reception.

9. Have the groom control one aspect of the planning process (photography, entertainment, transportation, etc.)

10. …and last but not least, invite him to all the planning meetings with your wedding planner even if he's unable to attend. 

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About DejanaeEvents

Dejanae Events is a reputable bridal consulting & event planning service where our focus is YOU. We capture your thoughts, ideas and dreams and formulate them into an unforgettable wedding day that you and your fiance will cherish forever. Servicing clients throughout the Chicagoland area, our hardworking team will guide you through your wedding planning from beginning to end. We obsess over details alleviating you from stress so that you can enjoy the most memorable days of your life.

Couple of the Week ((Marisa + Daniel))

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"Goofy, Geeky, Lovey Dovey Fun."

PhotoGrid 14088411276721 Couple of the Week ((Marisa + Daniel))

((Marisa + Daniel)) met through work over two and a half years ago. "It was a slow flirtation at the beginning that blossomed into full fledged love!" ~ Marisa said. "Our first date was the cutest. We were both so nervous and flirty."

While the couple was eating dinner, Daniel suddenly asked Marisa if the rumors he was hearing were true. Marisa asked him, "What rumors?" Daniel replied, "If you like me more than a friend." Bashfully, Marisa said yes, and the rest of their love story is history.

{Their Proposal}

Daniel proposed to Marisa using Harry Potter, which is a big part of their lives. "He cut out the pages of the 6th book to the chapter, The Unbreakable Vow. Inside was a snitch locket! When I opened the locket it said will you marry me? When I looked over, Daniel had the engagement ring out and ready to go!"

((Marisa + Daniel)) describes themselves as that couple at the grocery store that everyone stares at because they cannot keep their hands off of each other. "We make each other so happy and we want to scream it to the world that we are finally engaged!"

Congratulations to ((Marisa + Daniel)) as they plan their wedding!

PhotoGrid 1407592872212 Couple of the Week ((Marisa + Daniel))

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Interested in sharing your love story with us?  Follow the link to be featured!

 

Let Love Sparkle ~ Creative Ideas to Add Glamour to your Big Day

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In case you were wondering…a little bling can really go a long way…

rhinestoneribbon Let Love Sparkle ~ Creative Ideas to Add Glamour to  your Big Day

With a roll of rhinestone ribbon, some silver sparkle sheer overlay and pearl-head push pins, you can add some serious glitz to plain white linens on your cocktail rounds. Follow these steps + see how it's done! 

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Whether by sunlight or candlelight, this ribbon brings a little something special to your decor. By tailoring the tablecloth with a ribbon, it not only adds style, but a little shimmer.

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A hydrangea stem also can pick up the purple accent color by utilizing the mirrors provided by the NIU Naperville Conference Center. These simple centerpieces simply shine. 

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Renting mirrored table tops for your reception brings-in an extra pop of sparkle & helps all the details stand out.  

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Whether it's a personalize ice sculpture, drink stirrers in an accent color or sealing your wedding programs with a little sparkle, there are endless ways to let your love glisten around you and your guests through small details and simple touches.

Many thanks to Sahara Givens for her design and vision at her August 2014 Wedding/Reception to Howard Evans at the NIU Naperville Conference Center. Congrats, Sahara and Howard!

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About NIU_Naperville

Gina Kenyon is Conference Services Manager at Northern Illinois University Naperville Conference Center for the past two years. She is a graduate of Iowa State University with a business degree in Hotel and Restaurant Management. She has over twelve years of experience in the hospitality industry. In addition to planning meetings and corporate events, Gina has also spent the last six years, assisting couples with wedding and reception planning in her current and previous roles. She is seasoned in all your to-dos from up-lighting to head-table configurations. She currently resides in the western suburbs of Chicago with her husband and two very energetic young daughters. When she is not busy helping couples plan their best day ever, she enjoys exploring parks and nature centers with her family.

Honeymooners! Before Your Leave Home Checklist

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unnamed2 Honeymooners! Before Your Leave Home Checklist

 

Using a travel agent can save you time + money. Not only does it reduce stress, but you'll be able to learn what you want and find out information you might not otherwise know. Whether honeymooning locally or traveling abroad, these are some things couples need to consider ~ 

CREDIT CARDS

Call your credit card and ATM card company ahead of time and tell them you will be out of the country. Give a return date of 30 days after your return in case of slow charges. Know your ATM pin number. If you have a small limit on your ATM card, have them increase it for the length of the trip in case you need additional cash. Leave the phone numbers of your credit cards at home for someone, as well as bring a copy with you in case you have to report a lost or stolen card. If you are married and have 2 different credit cards, have each of you carry a different card.

Leave any credit cards, pictures, etc. from your wallet that you don’t need at home.

CASH

Avoid bringing $100 bills and bring new paper bills (you can go to your bank to get new bills). We suggest smaller bills for tips and small purchases.

PASSPORTS

Make 2 copies of your passport and leave one at home (or give to Cary Travel Express to keep), as well as take one with you separate from your Passport. This will make it easier if you need to replace a lost or stolen card. You can also take it a step further and bring extra Passport photos. Verify that your name on your tickets exactly matches your Passport. Make sure your date of birth has been given to the airlines for your flight. You need to have three blank pages available in your passport. Check the physical condition of your passport- tattered and worn passports may not be accepted at customs. Make sure that your passport is valid for 6 months after your return date of travel. *Passport cards are not acceptable!

MEDICATION

Have all prescription medicines in your carry-on (not in your checked bag!). Your medicine should be in the original bottle; otherwise you should carry a doctor’s note or the original prescription.

MISCELLANEOUS

Pack a change of clothing in your carry-on, so in case of a lost suitcase you will have something to wear until it is found. Also, mix and match clothes in your suitcases if traveling in a pair, that way if one suitcase is lost everyone still has something to wear.

● Bring a lock for your suitcase if doing a land tour. You cannot lock your bags when you check them, but can in a hotel.

● Stop the mail and paper and set up a light timer in your house.

● Carry Passports, money, credit cards, etc. in a neck wallet. Do not put them in a backpack, hanging purse or your back pocket.

● Carry-on liquids must be in a one-quart size bag and each item can’t be more than 3 ounces. Please check with your particular website for updated carry-on restrictions.

● Bring information and policy number of any travel insurance you have purchased.

● Don't over pack! Airlines are very strict these days about baggage sizes and weight limits. Be familiar with your airlines carry on and checked bag regulations.

● Don't pack the following items in your checked baggage: cash, jewelry, laptop computers, electronic or fragile items!

Have a wonderful and memorable trip!

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About Cary Travel Express

Neelie Kruse, CTC, Owner is the president and founder of Cary Travel Express. She has been in the travel industry for over 30 years and started Cary Travel Express in 1989, making this her 25th year in business. Her favorite destinations she has traveled to are Hawaii, all over Europe, Africa, Greece, Turkey and Tahiti. She is also a Sandals Certified Specialist (Lifetime Goldmember since 1998) and a Destination Weddings Specialist. Neelie attributes the 25-year success of her agency to the small town atmosphere and friendly people of Cary. She was honored with the MAST Top Agent Award for the last 8 years and was named by Travel Agent Magazine as a "Top 25 Travel Agent 2013"! Neelie's staff brings personalized service and personal travel knowledge that their clients find very reassuring.

Couple of the Week ((Natalie + Kevin))

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"You be the anchor that keeps my feet on the ground, I'll be the wings that keep your heart in the clouds."

image101 Couple of the Week ((Natalie + Kevin))

((Natalie + Kevin)) first said hello during the beginning of their sophomore year of college.  "We both moved into our dorm early before our sophomore year. I had job training and Kevin had football camp. We were pretty much the only people in the building, so it was only a matter of time before we met." 

After many favorite date nights, ((Natalie + Kevin)) found their "go-to" date night couple. "It might seem strange, but Kevin and I were friends with another couple that were almost exactly like us. Both boys were in football together and the other girlfriend was my sorority sister involved in improv comedy with me. We would have dinner at one of our favorite restaurants + then play games at their apartment."  Simple + fun + low key! 

What makes ((Natalie + Kevin)) so special is their journey through love.  Not only do they have a lot in common, but they have tried new things + discovered new passions together. "We're still different enough to complete each other.  I can't imagine where I would be without him!"  ~ Natalie said.

{Their Proposal Story} from Natalie ~

"My friends/roommates and I enjoy occasional trips to a nearby ice skating rink, so it was not unusual when Kevin brought up the idea to go again. Three of my sorority sisters even came along to join the fun. Everything was pretty much normal, but then our song came on the speakers + Kevin was down on one knee! My sisters were in on it and got three different angles of pictures + video." 

image91 Couple of the Week ((Natalie + Kevin))

((Natalie + Kevin)) recently adopted a new dog, which was "totally unexpected."  After hearing about a pit bull/lab mix that needed a home, the pair instantly fell in love. "About a month after Kevin proposed, Kevin, Chula and I started a little "family" together." 

Congratulations to ((Natalie + Kevin)) as they plan their October 2016 wedding! 

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Interested in sharing your love story with us?  Follow the link to be featured!

Finding a Wedding Calligrapher (A Primer)

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Greetings Sassy couples! I thought I’d put together a blog on finding a calligrapher since it might not be as intuitive as finding other vendors for your big day. There are different kinds of calligrapher’s with different skill levels and specialties, so there are some things you should keep in mind as you begin your hunt!

I’ve got my envelopes ready… 
You will need to be able to provide your envelopes “vitals” to whatever calligrapher you interview… Some things a calligrapher will care to know:
* Are your envelopes square?
* Do they feature an envelope liner?
* Are your envelopes white or a different color?
* Do you have overs (10-15% is ideal)?
* Are you looking for metallic or colored ink? If so, is a critical color match needed?

So many fonts… Which one?
Start thinking about what kind of font will relate not only to your invitations, but also to your event overall. Is it elegant? Whimsical? Casual? An experienced calligrapher should be able to make the proper recommendation on what style will work best with your big day. Sometimes, they will even be willing to match a font that they don’t advertise. Be sure to ask.

I want my addresses to look different…
Looking for a unique layout? Ask your potential calligrapher if they have samples they can show of slanted layouts, layouts with flourish elements and/or vertical or horizontal lines. Some will be comfortable with this, some will not. Just be sure to ask up front if your wedding has a unique point of view.

Setting up interviews
Calligraphers are busy. Especially during the summer months. An in-person meeting may not be possible, but you can still evaluate them with a little online research:  • Yelp is your friend… What are past clients saying?  
* Physical samples should be readily available. Online images are nice, but physical representations are better.
* How long has this calligrapher been in business? You’d like someone established, with positive reviews.
* Note that if it seems like you are finding pretty popular calligraphers, find out how far in advance you need to book them so that you won’t be disappointed.

Beyond the envelope
Don’t forget to mention other elements that you might need hand lettering on. Bulk deals may be available depending on the time of year. Place cards, table numbers, seating charts are other elements that you may consider having done by hand. This should get you going in the right direction.  Now go out there and find that calligrapher!

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About CTDesigns

I am a published, full-time Chicago-based calligrapher/stationer and instructor featuring resources that help demystify the "ink on paper" portion of the big day. Think: Hand lettering, invitations, D.I.Y. tips, and "day of" stationery!

Couple of the Week ((Morin + Geoff))

Author:

"Best Friends in Love"

Beausoleil Shewmake Kristin La Voie Photography KristinLaVoiePhotographyChicagoWeddingPhotographerCantignyGardensEngagementFilm13 low Couple of the Week ((Morin + Geoff))

We were introduced to ((Morin + Geoff)) through Kristin La Voie Photography through Two Bright Lights when we fell in love with their smiles after seeing photos from their beautiful engagement session at Cantigny Parks and Gardens.

((Morin + Geoff)) met through mutual friends in May of 2009.  "I had just returned from my freshman year of college and Geoff had recently moved back from Canada after playing hockey there for three years," Morin said. Both were told through friends that they would "absolutely adore" one another and that the pair would be "perfect together." Not long after, ((Morin + Geoff)) realized their friends were right and the pair officially started dating on July 4.

"The first summer, we were inseparable, which made it even more difficult when we had to leave for school late August," Morin added.  Jeff attended school in New Hampshire while Morin was in Illinois.

"Over the past five years, we have spent a lot of time apart, but we have always found ways to make it work and see each other as much as possible. It hasn't been easy, but it has always been worth it." 

Many of the couple's favorite memories together have been at airports due to their years of long-distance dating. Though their ideal date night is being able to cuddle up with Redbox, deep dish pizza and a bottle of wine.

beausoleil shewmak Couple of the Week ((Morin + Geoff))

{Their Proposal Story}

Geoff proposed at the end of the pier at Morin's parents lake house in Lac Du Flambeau, Wisconsin.

"It was a weekend getaway with my brother, Logan, and his girlfriend, (now fiancée!) Kate. My parents were in Ireland at the time, celebrating their 30th wedding anniversary. On that Sunday morning, we woke up and went to breakfast at a family favorite restaurant. After breakfast, we went back to the cabin and decided to spend some time on the lake. Logan and Kate were going to canoe, while Geoff and I kayaked. As we walked outside, Geoff suggested we go on the pier and look at how high the water level was. I thought, sure, why not? Logan and Kate stayed up by the shore line to "get the canoe and kayaks down," which turned out to be them setting up a camera to capture the big moment!" ~ from Morin.

"I remember Geoff looking extremely nervous, and the next thing I knew, he was down on one knee, asking me to marry him. We were both shaking, so he insisted on walking to shore before putting the ring on my finger!"

A sweet fact ~ Morin's dad proposed to her mom at the end of the pier in Wisconsin. 

Beausoleil Shewmake Kristin La Voie Photography KristinLaVoiePhotographyChicagoWeddingPhotographerCantignyGardensEngagementFilm16 low Couple of the Week ((Morin + Geoff))

beausoleil shewmake 3 Couple of the Week ((Morin + Geoff))

Beausoleil Shewmake Kristin La Voie Photography KristinLaVoiePhotographyChicagoWeddingPhotographerCantignyGardensEngagementFilm39 low Couple of the Week ((Morin + Geoff))Beausoleil Shewmake Kristin La Voie Photography KristinLaVoiePhotographyChicagoWeddingPhotographerCantignyGardensEngagementFilm68 low Couple of the Week ((Morin + Geoff))

Best wishes to ((Morin + Geoff)) as they plan their June 20, 2015 wedding! 

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