Jamie and Joe’s wedding day was finally here. As with all couples, there had been many months of planning, tempered with occasional obstacles to manage. But Jamie and Joe had one especially daunting obstacle to overcome…

…breast cancer. Jamie was diagnosed three months before their wedding day, but she and Joe didn’t let it stop the planning or interfere with the best day of their lives. The bracelet seen below is one of the batch procured and worn by their wonderfully supportive group of family and friends. This happens to be her mother. You can (and should) read all about Jamie’s story by checking out her blog post: Battling Breast Cancer at the Craziest Time of My Life.
And this perfect day began with Jamie getting ready with her side of the wedding party. The flower girl, seen below enjoying her time in the makeup chair, is the daughter of a mutual friend of the bride and groom. Her mom was the one who matched up Jamie and Joe!
Jamie couldn’t have looked more beautiful, with hair and makeup credit going to Ashley and Rachel of Rachel Reiman.
Jamie’s bridesmaids carefully inspected as the dress was secured.
And pictures a’plenty were taken!
Our bride was more than ready to get her wedding day underway.
Leah was with the guys, meanwhile, as they began to make their preparations with Joe.
Here’s the groom himself, making sure each and every hair was perfect.
Eventually, he had to kick the other guys out so that they’d get ready, too. Because a few minutes later…
…Joe and Jamie would be sharing their first look at each other. Joe couldn’t keep a smile off his face as he eagerly awaited Jamie’s arrival.
They shared a special moment together, and then we headed out the door…
…to take a couple rounds of pre-ceremony photos.
The forest preserve nearby made for a great backdrop.
We headed into town a little later, stopping by this section of old-timey storefronts.
Joe and I had some fun with the signage on display. I know that feeling all too well, and Joe’s performance was spot-on.
Look at how cute these two are.
There were lots of grins and funny faces…
…going back and forth.
As nicely as the couple was working the camera, though, we couldn’t forget about the rest of the wedding party!
Jamie put her bouquet, designed by Joseph’s, on full display.
Such a motley crew, this. Joe rounded up his groomsmen for a group portrait.
It was a beautiful day, and we were having a most excellent time hopping from site to site for pictures.
A favorite, for sure, was this playground equipment.
The young ring bearer was especially pleased with the choice.
Nice dismount!
Things at the playground wrapped up, but the fun was far from over. We jumped on the bus and headed back to Eaglewood…
…where everyone joined in for a round of bowling!
She was so adorable, giving her all during the game.
Nice toss! We called it quits before everyone got too sweaty. Besides, it was time…
…for the ketubah signing. Joe and Jamie took their seats as their family joined them and the ketubah was read.
Both sets of parents held the signed ketubah as part of the ceremony.
After the signing, friends and family gathered in the courtyard for the ceremony.
The bright, sunny day was perfect for photographs, but had some guests wishing they had brought their sunglasses.
And as Joe’s face reflects, it had gotten hot!
A few moments later though, Joe forgot about the heat as Jamie joined him under the chuppah and the Rabbi began the ceremony.
Jamie’s parents watched proudly as the couple exchanged their vows.
And the bride’s finger could not wait for that ring!
Jamie’s grandmothers had seats of honor in the front row.
Have you ever seen a happier groom?
With vows and rings exchanged, these two were married! Mozel Tov!
The newlyweds took a few moments to themselves…
…while Leah and I joined the guests for cocktail hour.
Jamie’s dad was in a great mood, and couldn’t help but joke around with the guests.
The guests mingled and enjoyed each other’s company as the sun set.
And very soon, the formal reception began with Jamie and Joe sharing their first dance as a married couple.
Next was a father and daughter dance shared between Jamie and her dad.
Jamie’s father also lead off the speeches, with a toast in honor of the couple.
Joe’s parents took a turn at the microphone, too, offering words of advice for the newlyweds.
The best man gave a toast as well…
…and he got more than one laugh out of the groom.
Jamie’s sister was up next with her lively toast!
Her friend rounded up the speeches and kicked off the dance set.
Everybody gather in… it’s time for the hora!
I love the reaction shots I get during the hora. They’re always somewhere between absolute joy and sheer terror.
Jamie’s parents seemed pretty comfortable, though.
And Joe’s dad couldn’t wait for his turn in the chair.
She definitely thought twice as the fellas lifted her up.
Who doesn’t love a good hora?
Then everyone grabbed a partner as the Gold Coast All Stars kicked the party into high gear.
Joe’s mom was ready to show off her best moves.
The dance floor was packed and full of motion…
…but the highlight of the party was about to happen…
…Jamie got up on stage and sang Salt N Pepa’s classic jam “Shoop” with Gold Coast All-Stars.
There was no going back after that. The party was officially off the hook.
Congratulations on your marriage, Jamie and Joe, and thank-you for sharing your day with me! It was a blast!