Mary and Dan get married - Willows, CA

If I had to envision a perfect backyard wedding I would picture Mary and Dan's wedding in Willows, CA. The bride grew up in the very house she would marry her future husband. It was a perfectly warm day when all of Mary and Dan's closest family and friends gathered on the very lawns she watered as a little girl to witness the couple become husband and wife. Rewind to just a few months ago, if anyone had asked me to photograph their wedding I would have politely declined and told them large events intimidated me. This was all true until my brother-in-law introduced me to Mary, the bride. I was blown away by her kindness and her ultra calm approach to planning this wedding. She said it would be at her parents' house and that she's letting her mom plan it all since that's what her mom wants to do. That was it! It was so simple and intimate that I was almost begging Mary to hire me! My brother-in-law of Spleeny Films and I teamed up and covered this beautiful, relaxed wedding, and now I want to get married again. In this backyard. 

I met Mary first and remember thinking I wanted to be her friend instantly. She is so relaxed and funny and she is down for anything. She had many great things to say about her fiancĂ© Dan, and when I finally met him at their engagement session I totally felt the same way about him! Together these two are the type of friends you hope to make in a lifetime and to have found each other as partners is pure bliss. If I could extend a belated wedding toast to Mary and Dan I would say to them: I have only known you both for a few months, but being your wedding photographer has taught me more about you than I know about some people I've known for years. Your congeniality and ability to become friends with anyone is inspiring. Your love for each other is fun and genuine. You surround yourselves with the sweetest and most generous people; I got a taste of what "southern hospitality" is being amidst your friends and family. Having one of the above is lucky; having all the above is a blessing for a very strong foundation as your start your lives together as husband and wife. Congratulations, Mary and Dan!

LOVE Dan's reaction when he first saw Mary. 

But first, shots!

Mary went to college in Hawaii where she learned how to hula dance. She surprised Dan with a beautiful hula towards the end of the evening.