I was beyond thrilled to be back in California to be with my wonderful Elwick-family friends as they celebrated the marriage of Sharlyn and Joe. There was a full day of love and partying ahead of us, and the festivities started with bride Sharlyn as she got ready. A bride wise beyond her years, Sharlyn knew the key to an awesome day would be comfortable footwear. She strapped on a comfy set of sneaks, and we were off to the races!
Sharlyn slipped into her dress and then joined her friends on the deck as they made preparations. The bride was well-taken care of by her crew!
Looks like everyone got the memo regarding comfortable footwear!
One of the first guests Sharlyn greeted was her niece. This was just one of many special people who attended the ceremony…
…the rest were taking their places on a beautiful nearby hillside, where the ceremony was held.
While the guests filed in, Sharlyn and her best friend had some time to mug for the camera.
Sharlyn couldn’t keep back the happy tears as she walked the path to the ceremony.
And Joe absolutely lit up when he got his first glimpse of his bride. It was the perfect note on which to begin the ceremony.
A friend of Joe and Sharlyn’s presided over the ceremony, and the proceedings were lovely– so much meaning and lots of heart-felt emotion. See for yourself in this collection of images from the ceremony:
With vows, rings and a first kiss exchanged, Sharlyn and Joe were married. Congratulations!!
The guests moved back down the hill to begin cocktails while the newlyweds and I slipped away to take portraits.
Look at this happy couple!
There were so many awesome spots around their venue for taking pictures. Every corner seemed to have another lush, green, gorgeous space perfect for photos!
When we wrapped up pictures, there was one last piece of business to attend to before the party: signing the marriage license! The couple and their witnesses gathered around the table to dot all the ‘i’s and cross all the ‘t’s.
So after, all the guests gathered in to listen to a musical performance given by the ceremony officiant, which served as the official kick-off for speeches. Many of Sharlyn and Joe’s loved ones took to the microphone to express their love and wish the couple all the happiness in the world as they began their marriage.
Joe’s mom made us all laugh with her speech…
…and Sharlyn’s mom wrapped up her toast by giving the bride and groom big hugs.
Joe’s brother and father made the final two toasts…
…and then everyone hit the dance floor!
While we still had some sunlight, Sharlyn directed everyone to one corner for a few final group portraits.
The newlyweds shared their first dance…
…and just as the sun was setting, the party kicked in to high gear. See for yourself in the next few images– some of my favorites from the dance party!
And then there was this mess. This is Joe’s sister Elaine. She loves the camera and I love her for it.
Elaine really committed to the part. Kudos!
What a beautiful, perfect day! I couldn’t have been happier to have shared it with you, Joe and Sharlyn. Many congratulations and much love to you and the rest of the family!