I am so excited to share Hayden + Brandon’s engagement session on the blog today! I had the best time with these two as we captured this special season of their lives at the Natchez Trace and Renaissance.
Hayden + Brandon met during early high school when the were both participating in 4H Shooting Sports and became each other’s “first love”! Hayden says that “life happened and we were ‘young and dumb’ and broke up.” Years later when they were both in junior college, God brought them back together. They talked for a long time and sought the Lord before deciding to try dating again.
As Hayden neared graduating from nursing school, Brandon began to plan his surprise proposal. When Hayden’s childhood best friend was in town for her own bridal shower, he knew this was the perfect opportunity. Hayden’s best friend went ring shopping with Brandon, helping to choose the perfect ring. And they planned a “Nursing School Graduation Party” for Hayden with everyone working together to keep the proposal a secret from her. At the graduation party, Brandon’s gift to Hayden was a pair of scrubs with her name embroidered on them, but with HIS last name! Hayden says that he is such a prankster, so she thought it was just a sweet gesture. Then she saw a framed picture of the ring and note saying “will you marry me?” Hayden turned around to see Brandon down on one knee and just about passed out! She was so surprised and couldn’t believe that everyone had kept such a big secret from her!
Hayden + Brandon, I have prayed for you as I have edited the images from your session. The verse the Lord has given me for you is Psalm 126:2, “Our mouths were filled with laughter, our tongues with songs of joy. Then it was said among the nations, ‘The LORD has done great things for them.'” I pray your mouths will always be filled with laugher and your tongues with songs of Joy! You will see the LORD do great things for you as you spread your joy and laughter!
I love a solitary road trip… and the only way it gets any better is when the solitary road trip includes a pre-wedding practice session with a sweet couple!
Saturday afternoon I enjoyed my 2.5 hour drive to Okalona, MS for Amber + Jonas’ pre wedding practice session. We met at the house where Jonas’ grandmother grew up. This is also the front porch Jonas brought Amber to when he proposed to her. On that day, when they arrived at the house the front porch was decorated. They sat on the swing and he asked her to spend forever with him. Little did she know their parents were waiting inside to celebrate the engagement with them!
I love family heritage and heirlooms, so I was super excited when Amber + Jonas wanted to have their pre-wedding practice session at this special location!
I got to the house a bit early and enjoyed sitting on the front porch, drinking ice cold water and getting to know this sweet couple better. I love building relationships with my couples! I believe this sweet time together will help me to serve them better on their wedding day.
We started their session on the front porch with so many memories. Next we moved to the shade of the trees in the yard with perfect dreamy light. We ended their session along the white fence surrounding the pasture. This session was truly a dream!
Amber + Jonas, I have prayed for you as I edited these images. As I prayed the word that keeps coming to my mind is JOY! The verse the Lord is giving me for you from Romans15:13 which says, “Now may God, the inspiration and fountain of Hope, fill you to overflowing with uncontainable JOY and perfect peace as you trust in him. And may the power of the Holy Spirit continually surround your life with his super-abundance until you radiate hope.”
I love engagement sessions, and this Vicksburg, MS engagement session with Emily + Cameron did not disappoint!
I picked Emily up at 5:00 and drove to meet up with Cameron at her family’s cabin outside of Vicksburg. I just loved getting to know Emily and her heart for Jesus on our car ride! We talked about church, ministry, worship, and her plans for including Jesus as the most important guest on her wedding day! I also loved hearing more about her love story and Cameron’s relentless pursuit of Emily’s heart!
How They Met
Emily + Cameron met during high school through their church youth group. He pursued, and love blossomed. High school graduation did not deter these two, and their love has continued to grow despite the long distance with Cameron at Ole Miss.
On the four year anniversary of when they started dating, Cameron took Emily out on a date. After their dinner, he took her to the swinging bridge in Byram to talk. This is something they did often, so she didn’t suspect anything. As they were walking across the bridge, Cameron got down on one knee and asked Emily to spend forever with him! Emily immediately said yes, knowing without a doubt that this is the man Jesus created just for her!
Emily + Cameron, I have prayed for you as I edited the images from your engagement session. As I prayed, the word FAITHFUL kept coming to my mind. I sense the Lord saying, “Well done! Thank you for being faithful to Me, even in your dating and engagement relationship.” He took me to the verse from Matthew 25:21 where it says, “His master replied, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master’s happiness!’” I feel that with you marriage He is bringing you into a season of deep happiness and joy!
Emily + Cameron, I enjoyed my time with you on your Vicksburg, MS engagement session. I am looking forward to celebrating with you on your wedding day in May!
I had the best time getting to know Anna Leigh + Houston at their recent engagement session! My favorite story from our time together was how Houston presented Anna Leigh with a Bible with her soon-to-be new married name on it when he proposed to her.
I am so excited to capture their beautiful wedding in October and can’t wait to spend more time with this precious couple!
Anna Leigh + Houston, I have prayed for you as I edited these images, and it is no coincidence that the Lord keeps taking me back to Ecclesiastes 4:12 where He says, “a chord of three strands is not easily broken.” The Lord is weaving you two together. He is the third chord. And when you are united with Him and one another, no weapon formed against you shall prosper.
Two students at the University of Mississippi School of Medicine. A bus ride to orientation at the Jackson Free Clinic. Little did they know Jesus’ plans when they “happened” to sit beside one another. The ride that normally takes five minutes lasted an hour, and Rachel and Samuel talked the whole time. What began as a friendship slowly blossomed into more as they endured the rigorous schedule of first year. Papa God has been directing each of their paths to intersect at this time, and He has directed the converging into a single new path they are are beginning to walk together. Hand-in-hand with both one another and their Savior.
The day Samuel proposed seemed like a normal Sunday. Church together followed by lunch. During lunch there was a call from Samuel’s mom asking them to come to his sister’s art exhibit at the Fairview Inn. When they arrived, Samuel led Rachel to the garden and handed her an envelope addressed to his future wife. Rachel opened the envelope to find it empty, but then noticed a small burlap canvas on the ground nearby with words written on it. Samuel had written the parts of the letter out on different canvases and placed them throughout the garden. They walked through the garden and Rachel read each letter out loud. The last part of the letter was in the gazebo with roses. The letter ended with 2 Peter 3:18, “But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and savior Jesus Christ. To him be the glory both now and to the day of eternity. Amen.” Rachel was shocked. This letter was written over three years ago… but even then the Lord knew that their pastor would preach a sermon on this verse, and only this verse, on this day. The day that Rachel would say “yes” to Samuel’s question, “Will you marry me?”
I so enjoyed getting to know Rachel and Samuel during their recent engagement session at The Town of Livingston! Not only can you see the love these two have for one another, but their hearts for Jesus shine clearly to everyone the meet. I am so excited for the plans God has for Rachel and Samuel, and I am honored to capture their love story as they become one in June!
This past Saturday I met Hayley and Ethan at the Town of Livingston for their engagement session. I was quickly reminded why I love engagement sessions so much, and why they are such an essential part of my client experience! I was especially thankful when Hayley and Ethan agreed to travel from their college towns for a weekend in Mississippi for their engagement session with me! They are both in their final semesters of school… Hayley in Columbia, SC and Ethan outside of Atlanta, GA.
Hayley and Ethan met at Impact 360, a gap year Christian leadership program. After completing the one year program, their relationship has developed long distance as they have attended different universities. God’s plan for their relationship has not been deterred by the distance. This past fall, Ethan planned an epic mountain top proposal in the Smokey Mountains of Tennessee! Hayley recalled Ethan rushing to the top as she wanted to stop to look at wildflowers and take in the sunset. Little did she know he had a big question to ask her once they reached the top! Hayley said that eventually they made it to the top where he stopped, got down on one knee, and asked the big question. “I screamed with joy and it was the most dreamy moment of my life for sure.His friends were hiding to take pictures. It was so beautiful and could not have been more perfect.”
But that’s not all. Afterwards he surprised her again. All their friends were in a cabin nearby ready to celebrate with them!
Throughout Hayley and Ethan’s engagement session we shared our hearts for Jesus. For me, the biggest highlight of what was a perfect session was when Ethan asked me to pray for them before we left. This missionary’s heart came even more alive in that moment, and it felt like Holy Spirit took over my mouth as His heart for this couple began to pour out through me. I can feel His excitement over the plans he has for Hayley and Ethan! His plans to advance His Kingdom through this couple in submission to Him, laying down their lives and taking up His cross.
It is such an honor to be able to capture this love story as He is writing it. I can’t wait to see Him glorified as these two become one in May!
Victoria reminisced fondly, “It was this spot on our first date where we talked about our favorite places to travel, and he brought it home by telling me his favorite places in Starkville. I had only been at MSU one semester, so I hadn’t been to many of the places he mentioned, but I could hear my inner monologue saying ‘I want to go there with him! I want to go everywhere with him!’” It was on that very first date that God placed a desire to spend their lives together in each of them!
As we walked the lovely grounds of the Refuge we shared not only our love stories, but also our faith stories. Victoria and Drew have a solid foundation in Christ their Savior. It is He who has brought these two together. It is He who has filled them with such joy that you just can’t help but laugh and smile when you are around them!!
And it is He who painted the most beautiful sunset for our final set of images for the day…
I love every moment of my time with Victoria and Drew, who flew in from Charleston, SC for their engagement session with me! I am so thankful for the friendship that we have formed and I am more excited than ever to capture their wedding at the Chapel of Memories in Starkville, MS in May!
Ronit contacted me in early November to inquire about her December 8th wedding date, and I was so happy to have the date open! With time so short, I was THRILLED when they were willing to work with my schedule and drive to Jackson from Meridian for their engagement session! Engagement sessions are so important to build a relationship with my couples before their wedding day. So important in fact, that I include an engagement session as a free gift to all my MLPhoto Brides!
Ronit and Dan trusted me to pick locations. We planned to start at the Mississippi State Capitol, but I also knew they wanted a second location to add variety to their gallery. I left my house an hour early to do a bit of location scouting in downtown Jackson. As I was driving to the Mississippi Museum of Art, I drove by this abandoned, overgrown lot next to the rail road tracks and knew it would be stunning at sunset! I was so thankful when Ronit and Dan trusted me and we were able to capture these stunning images! I just love the juxtaposition of her red dress, his suit, and this field. It looks as if they are all alone in the middle of nowhere, when in fact they are in the middle of downtown Jackson!
Watching Ronit and Dan together, you can see their love for one another. As I have edited these stunning images, I have prayed for this beautiful couple. The verse that continues to come to mind is from Song of Solomon 3:4 “I have found the one whom my soul loves.” The Lord has brought these two together for a bigger purpose. As Ecclesiastes 4:9-12 says,
“Two people are better off than one, for they can help each other succeed.If one person falls, the other can reach out and help. But someone who falls alone is in real trouble.Likewise, two people lying close together can keep each other warm. But how can one be warm alone?A person standing alone can be attacked and defeated, but two can stand back-to-back and conquer. Three are even better, for a triple-braided cord is not easily broken.”
I had so much fun capturing these family portraits of the Proctor Family at Parham Bridges Park the day before Thanksgiving!
Mrs. Regina first contacted me early in November to see if I was available for Hayley’s upcoming June wedding at Bridlewood of Madison! In my initial reply, I sent over my wedding package information and suggested a meeting at my favorite coffee spot, The Urban Sip at We Will Go Ministries. Mrs. Regina quickly replied that they LOVE We Will Go and the Urban Sip! We both felt from that moment that this was a Jesus connection!
Annslea and I met with Mrs. Regina, and Hayley FaceTimed in from school. I so enjoyed hearing Hayley’s proposal story and wedding plans, and especially how Jesus is the center of it all! As we emailed back and forth about wedding plans, Mrs. Regina decided that she would also love updated family portraits while Hayley was in town for Thanksgiving. This also gave Hayley and I a chance to meet in person, which is so important to me! I always hope to begin a relationship with my brides throughout the wedding planning process so that I am a trusted friend on their wedding day. And I loved that I was able to meet and work with her whole family! I walked away from this session thinking, “this is a family I would love to get to know and spend more time with.” Their love for Jesus and one another shines through their beautiful smiles!
Proctor Family, I have prayed over each of you as I have edited these images. The verse the Lord has given me for you family is, “My children, our love should not be just words and talk; it must be true love, which shows itself in action.” (1 John 3:18)I witnessed this verse lived out as I watched your family lovingly interact with one another. I pray these portraits bless each of you, and they will be cherished memories for generations to come.
What an honor it has been to not only capture Emiley & Jonathan’s engagement season and wedding day, but to truly become friends with them! Emiley and Jonathan REALLY love Jesus, and we have had some powerful and encouraging conversations about Him! They also REALLY love one another, and their love shows in every image of them together!
My Jesus connection to Emiley & Jonathan goes back over ten years when I was in a Bible study at Pinelake with Jonathan’s mom Adina. Adina has been an encouragement and prayer warrior in my life for years. When she contacted me about capturing the day her baby boy becomes one with the girl of his dreams, I was overjoyed to be able to work with them! I loved every moment of getting to know each of them through our phone conversations, drive to and from the cotton field for their engagement session, and capturing each moment of their beautiful wedding day.
Emiley & Jonathan, it has been an honor to pray over you and speak life into you during this season. I am so excited to see the journey Jesus takes you on together. I pray we have many more conversations about Jesus and the experiences we will have with Him. As I wrote in your guest book Bible, stay full of the love of Jesus and you will live out these verses well.
Spirit-Guided Relationships: Wives and Husbands
And further, submit to one another out of reverence for Christ.
For wives, this means submit to your husbands as to the Lord.For a husband is the head of his wife as Christ is the head of the church. He is the Savior of his body, the church.As the church submits to Christ, so you wives should submit to your husbands in everything.
For husbands, this means love your wives, just as Christ loved the church. He gave up his life for herto make her holy and clean, washed by the cleansing of God’s word. He did this to present her to himself as a glorious church without a spot or wrinkle or any other blemish. Instead, she will be holy and without fault.In the same way, husbands ought to love their wives as they love their own bodies. For a man who loves his wife actually shows love for himself.No one hates his own body but feeds and cares for it, just as Christ cares for the church.And we are members of his body.
As the Scriptures say, “A man leaves his father and mother and is joined to his wife, and the two are united into one.”This is a great mystery, but it is an illustration of the way Christ and the church are one.So again I say, each man must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband.