I met Daniela over 2 years ago in Kenya. I remember that she had one of the absolute sweetest and strongest hearts I’d ever met and EVERYONE loved the heck out of her. She told us all about this boy named Pat and how she knew she would marry him and was SOOOO ready to be engaged when she got home (secretly hoping it would be in the airport when he picked her up – to the point where we all helped her decide which dress she would wear to be picked up in no lie). Spoiler alert – he didn’t do it in the airport but later on that year lololol. I was getting into photography at the time and practically BEGGED her to let me photograph her wedding one day. Little did I know she would actually call me almost a year later with that exact request and now, 2 years later I had the privilege of capturing her special day that her and Pat will remember forever.
After planning the most fun weekend getaway ever for their wedding, I flew into Grand Rapids that Friday and booked it to good ole Paw Paw, Michigan to meet the rest of the wedding party and family at an adorable Airbnb Daniela found for the ceremony and reception. And ya’ll – Daniela knows how to plan – it was one of the most FUN weekends I’ve had in forever. We got there and help set up the tent and tables in the backyard and had the cutest little rehearsal dinner and the entire wedding party stayed at the Lake house together all weekend (I mean coolest wedding idea ever). The next morning we pranced around the Lake and took photos allllll morning before these two said I do in front of all of their family and friends. Afterward we went out on the Lake, swam in the pool and celebrated the crap out of them. We even ended up putting a keg on the boat and definitely stayed on it for a few hours.
The coolest part of this weekend was realizing that the majority of the people came in from out of town to celebrate Pat and Daniela. Having everyone you love willing to fly out to celebrate YOU is one of the sweetest memories I think any couple could have on their wedding day and I am so so so honored to have gotten to be the one to capture it. That is why destination weddings are my favorite (and I am 1000% a fan of turning the wedding day into a wedding weekend) because everyone gets to spend so much extra personal time together and it is so intentional why everyone is there and WANTS to spend as much time celebrating as much as they can. This weekend was such a special one because not only did I get to see this sweet, sweet friend of mine again but I got to see her marry the absolute love of her life. Pay + Daniela – I love you two so freaking much!!!!