I feel like every wedding has its own story. I will leave a wedding at the end of the night and come up with several things from each wedding that were unique or central to the story of the day. Sometimes it’s a couple overcoming crazy odds; there might have been an outdoor ceremony when it was 200 degrees outside; perhaps it’s the absence of a loved one. What I saw as a core theme from Andrew and Hannah’s wedding day was the story of Andrew’s grandparents (who won the anniversary dance by being married for 60 years), who hail from Jordan and had spent roughly the last 5 months in the States to witness Andrew and his brother’s weddings. More than usual, I had the feeling that every time I clicked the shutter with them in the frame that I was capturing something incredibly important. These moments were rare. Not only because it was a wedding, but the simple concept of this family being in the same room together rarely happens. It was awesome because this was a close-knit family that didn’t take a single moment of their being together for granted. It was a really special day and the presence of family was central to Andrew and Hannah’s emotional day.
We started the day getting ready at The DoubleTree in downtown Cedar Rapids. The girls got their hair and makeup done and Hannah got her dress on (barely), which was cause for celebration. She had an amazing first look with her dad that had almost the whole room in tears. Right after that, we traveled up north to Elizabeth Ann Seton Catholic Church for the bride and groom’s first look with each other. These guys love the Lord. As we were taking some photos in and around the church, I kept getting the church’s giant cross in the background. I said, “You’re going to have Jesus in every picture here, I’m pretty sure.” To which Hannah said, “Good!” So hopefully these photos can doubly function as a sort of beautiful symbol of what their marriage is built upon.
After the ceremony, we hopped on a party bus and gallivanted around Cedar Rapids, taking some fun wedding party photos along the way. Hannah and Andrew’s wedding reception was at Eastbank in downtown Cedar Rapids, and it was an awesome celebration of the day. Despite the differences in culture and music styles, both sides of the family were socializing and celebrating together, talking, laughing, crying, and especially dancing. DJ Riley mixed in some Arabic music with today’s hits, and the dance floor was—as the kids say—lit! These guys were dancing HARD. I’m not going to even try to edit out all the sweat. It’s part of the story! And it’s a story that we were privileged to retell. Andrew and Hannah, we really appreciate you guys having us be a part of your wedding day. We wish you guys all the best!
Makeup – Beauty EDIT
Flowers – Pierson’s
DJ – Riley Mullane
Cake & Desserts – Hy-Vee (Edgewood Fountains)
Cupcakes – That One Cupcake Place
Dress – White Willow Bridal Boutique
Catering – Eastbank (Connie Goldsmith)
Transportation – Dolly’s Party Bus
Photographers – Carter Photography