http://www.aphotographer.me/blog a.photographer: Blog
2017-11-15T17:31:00Z (C) a.photographer a.photographer amanda12345@gmail.com http://www.aphotographer.me/blog/2017/11/intimate-winter-in-october-dax-emily-married-white-bear-lake-wedding-photographer intimate winter in october | dax & emily [married!] | white bear lake wedding photographer
A fresh coating of snow on the last Saturday in October was finally Dax & Emily's wedding day! This couple opted for a small, intimate ceremony attended by their closest family and friends which I loved. Emily picked out the cutest details for their big day, from her sparkly black Steve Madden's to her wedding gown, complete with pockets! The couple's wedding rings are incredibly unique - made from a special block of wood. The contrast of the bright colorful flowers juxtaposed with black and white stripes was striking. All of the nieces and nephews wore a variety of Converse - the couple's favorite shoes! After getting ready at the hotel, Emily and her girls (Lou & Kelly) headed to Katherine Abbott Park for the ceremony where Dax was waiting! The ceremony, hosted by the couple's mailman, was full of happy tears and laughs, especially when Emily made sure to jam Dax's ring on his finger! Following the first kiss, the couple was congratulated outside by their guests. The snow sprinkled grass was the perfect backdrop for a variety of family photos with the newlyweds. It was so awesome that the guests also wore coordinating colors and patterns - it made for some wonderful photos. I took the bride and groom down a path of the park for some portraits of them together in their newly married joy. The mix of fall colors and and snow was so fun to capture. These two were troopers in the chilly weather! Once we had enough of the cold, we headed back to the park shelter for dinner and cake. What an awesome day to celebrate these two! Congratulations, Dax & Emily!
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This wonderful wedding could not have been possible without the help of many hard working vendors, services, and people:
Wedding Dress: David's Bridal
Hair & Makeup: Hair by Alissa Kennedy
Rings: Jewelry by Johan
Cake: Nothing Bundt Cakes
Catering: Aesop's Table
Invites: Vistaprint
   
Looking for a fun wedding photographer to capture your celebration? Send me a message for more information!

 

a.photographer amanda12345@gmail.com (C) a.photographer 2017-11-15T17:22:26Z 2017-11-15T17:22:26Z
http://www.aphotographer.me/blog/2017/11/bruentrup-farm-wedding-chris-anne-married-maplewood-wedding-photographer bruentrup farm wedding | chris & anne [married!] | maplewood wedding photographer
A mid-October day at Bruentrup Heritage Farm in Maplewood, MN was the perfect backdrop for Chris and Anne to become husband & wife. Arriving to sunshine, the bride and her bridesmaids were in the farmhouse getting all dolled up and sipping on some bubbly. Meanwhile, Chris and his groomsmen got ready and cracked some jokes in the basement of the barn. I loved all of Anne's details for the day - from the sparkly Swavorski crystal earrings, to her bright bouquet, and all the way down to the adorable cowgirl boots she adores. The inside of both Chris & Anne's wedding rings include an inscription and each other's birthstones; does it get much sweeter than that? After Anne slipped into her ball gown from Posh Bridal with just the right amount of poof, it was time for the first look out in front of the big red barn! These two were so excited to see each other - and good thing we had tissues ready. While taking portraits of the couple, the sun even peeked out! Of course, Chris & Anne's three pups also had to get in on some photos, the ladies with flowers and gentleman Cashius with a little bow tie. The bridesmaids and groomsmen then joined us for some group photos, along with the adorable flower girl and ring bearer who had a blast taking part in the festivities. We snuck in a few family portraits before it really started to rain. Thankful for good timing! Then it was off to the barn for the beautiful wedding ceremony with the twinkle light backdrop. Anne looked stunning walking down the aisle to her groom! There were lots of laughs shared when Chris dropped Anne's ring before placing it on her finger. After the I Do's, I whisked the newlyweds off for a few "just married" photos under the cover of the farmhouse porch while the barn got switched to the reception set up. We sat down to a wonderful meal of smoked brisket and pulled pork, made by none other than the groom! It was delicious! The speeches from the best man and maid of honor were heartful and touching, along with a speech by Chris's dad who looked at Anne and announced, "Finally!" Chef Chris then decided it was time to get his bride a fresh glass of champagne by opening the bottle of bubbly with a knife! The cork of that bottle made for a unique ring photo. Then it was time to dance the night away under the twinkle lights in the barn. Congratulations, Chris & Anne! Cheers to love, laughter, and happily ever after! 
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This wonderful wedding day could not have been possible without the help of many hardworking vendors, services, and people:
Wedding gown: Posh Bridal
Bridesmaid dresses: David's Bridal
Hair/Makeup: Spalon Montage
Shoes: Corral Cowgirl Boots
Rings: Hers: Wedding Day Diamonds, His: L & J Custom Jewelry
Bridal earrings: Haute Bridal, Posh Bridal
Suits: Men's Warehouse
Florist: M Flower Studio
Cake: Nadia's Cakes of Woodbury
Catering: US Foods, made by Chef Christophor Schmidt - Groom
Photography: Amanda Feltmann, a.photographer
Videography: Cal Theisling Videography
DJ: Milk Majer, Instant Request Entertainment
Wedding planner: Tricia Duffney, Little Farm Girl Events, LLC
   
Planning your own celebration of happily ever after? Contact me for more information on my
wedding photography collections, serving the Minneapolis - St Paul areas and more! 

 

a.photographer amanda12345@gmail.com (C) a.photographer 2017-11-02T16:50:37Z 2017-11-02T16:50:37Z
http://www.aphotographer.me/blog/2017/10/on-the-front-steps-eveslage-family-waconia-family-photographer on the front steps | eveslage [family] | waconia family photographer
A sunny late summer afternoon was perfect for the Eveslage family to take updated portraits on their beautiful front steps of their home in Waconia, MN. I love how the family coordinated in a mix of blue tones and patterns. Sommer's colorful flowers really popped in the bright sun. Quincee's pink curls were too cute for words! I'm pretty sure Cooper is going to be taller than me pretty soon. It is really sweet to see how much these two siblings love each other. After a few more portraits in front of their new home, we headed down the street by some trees for a more neutral backdrop. I love the last photo of mom and daughter together - priceless!
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Does your cute family need some updated portraits? Send me a message for more information on my family portrait sessions!

 

a.photographer amanda12345@gmail.com (C) a.photographer 2017-10-31T19:49:34Z 2017-10-31T19:49:34Z
http://www.aphotographer.me/blog/2017/10/fall-in-love-on-harriet-island-xavier-emily-married-st-paul-wedding-photographer fall in love on harriet island | xavier & emily [married] | st paul wedding photographer
A crisp Saturday in October on Harriet Island in St Paul was the perfect backdrop for Xavier & Emily to say "I Do!" after all these years of dating. Emily and her bridesmaids got themselves all dolled up at her friend's beautiful apartment just across the river. Her poofy dress with the intricate flower & feathered belt was too gorgeous for words. After her mom and sister helped Emily get dressed, we headed over to Harriet Island. Thankfully the rain let up! The bride and groom had their first look riverside - with an old paddleboat in the background! Xavier & Emily just lit up when they finally got to see each other. Emily's yellow & blue bridal bouquet popped against the overcast skies. These two are just so fun to be around, and their wedding day was no exception. Always laughing and always enjoying each other's company. The bridesmaids were so excited to see their bride and groom when they snuck out of the reception hall for some group photos. I loved the light white suits on the guys and the girls looked great in flowy navy dresses with delicate lace on top. While doing family photos, the sun came out warming up the park.
With the sun shining bright, it was time to get married! Emily's grandpa conducted the ceremony with the ribbons of the arbor flowing and the downtown buildings in the background. After they said I do, Xavier & Emily were so excited walking down the aisle as newlyweds! The stone reception hall had the perfect decor touches for a wedding - I especially loved the yellow & blue lanterns hung in the rafters. Some great speeches, a delectable dinner, glass clinking, and kisses from the couple followed. After the champagne toast, we popped outside for some quick sunset photos in the most amazing golden sunlight before the first dance. The guests had so much fun dancing the night away to the DJ. Before the night was over, we took advantage of the twinkling St Paul skyline in the dark to get a few more portraits of the bride and groom and that amazing poofy dress. Congratulations, Xavier & Emily! Your wedding day was magical to capture.
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This wonderful wedding day could not have been possible without the expertise of many people, vendors, and services:
Wedding gown: The Wedding Shoppe, St Paul
Bridesmaids dresses: The Wedding Shoppe, St Paul
Hair/Makeup: Rocco Altobelli
Shoes: Tom's
Rings: Shane Company
Suits: Men's Warehouse
Venue: Harriet Island, City of St Paul
Florist: HyVee
Cake: HyVee
Catering: Brie Catering
DJ: Adagio DJ Entertainment
Save the dates, invites, programs: Sue Banovetz
Decorator: Avant Decor
 
I love photographing the first day of your happily ever after! If you are looking for a fun and professional photographer to document your
wedding day, I would love to hear from you! Send me a message for more information on my wedding photography collections.

 

a.photographer amanda12345@gmail.com (C) a.photographer 2017-10-27T20:01:33Z 2017-10-27T20:01:33Z
http://www.aphotographer.me/blog/2017/10/take-me-down-to-the-little-white-church-wes-becky-married-cologne-wedding-photographer take me down to the little white church | wes & becky [married!] | cologne wedding photographer
A beautiful September day was the perfect setting for Wes & Becky to say "I Do" surrounded by their family and friends. I met up with the bridesmaids at St John's UCC in Bongards - the sweetest little white church. Becky's choice of gown, shoes, and blingy earrings were impeccable. With the help of her gals, the bride slipped into her intricate dress that fit her to a T! We then headed to the tree lined driveway of Wes' mom's house for the couple's first look. Wes & Becky were so excited to see each other! The driveway and down the road to the creek was a great spot for some bride and groom portraits in the beautiful sunlight. Then the wedding party joined us - the ladies in strappy navy blue dresses and the guys in light gray suits and coordinating navy blue ties. After some images on the driveway and in the grassy field, we headed back to the church for the ceremony just as it started to sprinkle. The sanctuary was packed with so many excited family and friends. The best part was when Becky thought the answer to the pastor's question was "unity candle" when it was actually "wedding rings" - we were all laughing! Following the ceremony, the wedding party hopped on a wagon pulled by a John Deere tractor to have some cold ones to celebrate while heading to the reception. It was a bit breezy, but oh so fun. The wagon made a quick stop at Burky's before the party's lively entrance at the Cologne Community Center. A yummy of Hillcrest Chicken was devoured before the fun speeches; made by both maids of honor and best men. The DJ (Brandon Lind) then got the first dances started and everyone danced the night away! Congratulations, Wes & Becky!
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This wonderful wedding day could not have been possible without the help of many hardworking vendors, services, and people:
Wedding gown: Posh Rack, Wayzata
Bridesmaid dresses: Kennedy Blue, The Wedding Shoppe, St Paul
Hair & Makeup: Salon Trende, Waconia
Shoes: Payless
Suits: The Temple, Glencoe
Florist: Holly Steir (groom's cousin)
Cake/Dessert: Family of the bride & groom
Catering: Hillcrest Catering, Norwood Young America
Transportation: Ron's Busing
DJ: Mr Biggs, Brandon Lind, Norwood Young America
Save the Dates, Invites, Programs: Mixbook
Table linens: G&K Rental, Mankato
 
Planning your own celebration of your happily ever after? Send me a message for more information on my wedding collections!

 

a.photographer amanda12345@gmail.com (C) a.photographer 2017-10-12T21:56:03Z 2017-10-12T21:56:03Z
http://www.aphotographer.me/blog/2017/10/graffiti-love-dax-emily-engaged-minneapolis-engagement-photographer graffiti love | dax & emily [engaged!] | minneapolis engagement photographer
After meeting up with this fun couple to discuss their wedding photography, I was super excited to capture their engagement photos. Dax and Emily are so relaxed and easy to get along with; I feel like I've known them my whole life! We started off at the adorable Minnesota-themed store "i like you" in Minneapolis, with a colorful exterior wall that Dax had scoped out while on a job a few months prior, thinking it would make a good photo location. Bride-to-be Emily adored the setting and especially the little fairy door we also spotted there. I thought the pops of color was the perfect contrast with their neutral outfits. Then we head to the Lynn-Lake area to find some graffiti, starting with the colorful wall of the Jungle Theater. Around the corner was the perfect black and white checkerboard wall to match the theme of their upcoming wedding. We kept the session going until the street lights came on. I cannot wait until their wedding at the end of the month! Congratulations, Dax & Emily! 
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Planning your happily ever after? Send me a message for more information on my wedding collections, which all include an engagement session! 

 

a.photographer amanda12345@gmail.com (C) a.photographer 2017-10-09T21:28:15Z 2017-10-09T21:28:15Z
http://www.aphotographer.me/blog/2017/9/09-09-17-best-day-ever-alex-emily-married-norwood-young-america-wedding-photographer 09.09.17 best day ever | alex & emily [married!] | norwood young america wedding photographer
What a beautiful day it was for a wedding! On Saturday, September 9th, Alex & Emily tied the knot after many years of dating! I met up with the girls of the wedding party at Emily's family home to capture the small details of the big day and also grab some images of the bride getting ready to see her groom. The first look was so sweet - Alex was so excited to see his bride! The bridesmaids looked stunning in their long burgandy dresses; I especially loved the varied styles they each picked out. The guys looked great in their suits, which popped against the cornfield in the backyard. After some group photos and some more bride & groom portraits on the beautiful day, we all headed to St John's Lutheran Church for the wedding ceremony. Pastor Josh's message was touching and heartfelt and then the couple was presented to the cheers of the guests. The newlyweds hopped on a party bus with their wedding party & friends to cruise around the country side and make a bar stop at Burky's in Cologne. The Cologne Community Center was so wonderfully decorated for the lively reception. A special touch was the cake topper from Emily's grandparent's wedding; surrounded by some of the most delicious cupcakes I've ever devoured! After the hilarious speeches, I snuck the Alex & Emily outside for a few golden hour sunset portraits - these two blew me away how natural they were together in front of my camera. Once back inside, it was time to dance the night away to DJ Mr Biggs. Congratulations Mr. & Mrs. Schmidt! 
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This wonderful wedding day could not have been possible without the help of many awesome vendors, services, and people:
Wedding dress: Carrie Johnson Bridal, St Cloud MN
Bridesmaid dresses: Azazie - azazie.com
Hair: Jen Sauter, Hairs 2 U, Cologne, MN
Makeup: Paige Brown, facebook.com/paigenicoleartistry
Shoes: Kohls
Jewelry: Charming Charlies
Suits: Knight's Chamber, St Cloud, MN
Flowers: Brenda Schmitz, family friend
Cupcakes: Cheryl Clark, Mother of the Bride
Catering: Hillcrest Cafe and Catering, Norwood Young America, MN
Party Bus: Ron's Busing, Cologne, MN
DJ: Mr Bigg, Brandon Lind, Norwood Young America, MN
Invitations: Vistaprint
   
Have you just gotten engaged and are looking for a fun & energetic wedding photographer?
Send me a message for more information on my engagement & wedding photography collections! 

 

a.photographer amanda12345@gmail.com (C) a.photographer 2017-09-21T03:26:48Z 2017-09-21T03:26:48Z
http://www.aphotographer.me/blog/2017/9/falling-in-love-in-the-city-tom-rebecca-engaged-minneapolis-engagement-photographer falling in love in the city | tom & rebecca [engaged!] | minneapolis engagement photographer
Newly engaged couple, Tom & Rebecca decided that the Minneapolis skyline would be the perfect backdrop for their engagement portraits. We met up on a steamy August night at the Stone Arch Bridge and they looked fabulous! I loved hearing about how Tom proposed at their home, surprising Rebecca with flower petals and a gorgeous Tacori ring and promise of forever after a long day at work. With her love of neutrals, Rebecca loved that we started with a texture gray wall as a background. This bride-to-be cannot get enough of black and white images, so I've shared a lot of those edits below. These two have the most beautiful smiles and I loved watching them interact. I cannot wait for their upcoming spring wedding! Congratulations, Tom & Rebecca!
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Did you just say "YES!" to a very important question? Contact me for more information on my engagement and wedding portrait photography!

 

a.photographer amanda12345@gmail.com (C) a.photographer 2017-09-20T16:45:41Z 2017-09-20T16:45:41Z
http://www.aphotographer.me/blog/2017/9/sunset-at-baylor-park-bartush-family-norwood-young-america-family-photographer sunset at baylor park | bartush [family] | norwood young america family photographer
On a bright late summer evening, I met up with the whole Bartush family at Baylor Park for some updated family portraits of the group. Of course, 2 year old Lydia stole the show with her antics; pausing to do some yoga and chat on her mom's iPhone! Everyone had fun laughing at how goofy she was. The stream and cattails made an awesome backdrop to showcase the Bartushs. Lydia had a great time running back and forth on the bridge and popping bubbles. The sunshine peeked out so wonderfully behind the trees, enveloping us in warm golden light. Thanks for the great time and enjoy your updated family photos, Bartush family!
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Don't remember the last time you took family photos? Contact me to schedule a family portrait session today!

 

a.photographer amanda12345@gmail.com (C) a.photographer 2017-09-15T14:46:57Z 2017-09-15T14:46:57Z
http://www.aphotographer.me/blog/2017/9/class-of-2018-taia-senior-portraits-jordan-mn-senior-photographer class of 2018 | taia [senior portraits] | jordan mn senior photographer
A beautiful end-of-summer evening in historic downtown Jordan, MN was the perfect backdrop for Taia's senior portrait, class of 2018 Central High School. This bright eyed girl made my job so easy, with her natural smile in front of my camera. Taia laughed at me when I told her I was afraid I was going to say her name wrong! Then she taught me about having a "coffee name," which I had never heard of - surprising since I worked as a Starbucks barista for a few years. We explored the area of the downtown businesses, with so many nooks and crannies for us to use as backgrounds. After a few outfit changes, we headed down to the river & waterfall area for some sunshine & trees. Taia loves being outdoors so this was a great spot. We had fun climbing over all those rocks and yelling over the noise of the rushing waterfall. Thank you for a fantastic senior session Taia - and enjoy your senior year! 
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Senior year already? Send me a message to schedule a fun & personalized senior portrait session!

 

a.photographer amanda12345@gmail.com (C) a.photographer 2017-09-14T16:18:27Z 2017-09-14T16:18:27Z
http://www.aphotographer.me/blog/2017/9/sunny-afternoon-at-lake-harriett-mila-1-year-portraits-minneapolis-family-photographer sunny afternoon at lake harriet | mila [1 year portraits] | minneapolis family photographer
Its hard to believe this spunky girl is already an entire year old! I met up with Amelia and her doting parents on a beautifully sunny afternoon at Lake Harriet, the same place the couple took their engagement photos! Mila could not get enough of all the dogs walking by! Her face just lights up when she sees a puppy and can even say "dug." Its so precious. Working so hard on walking, Mila still defaults to her bear cub crawl from time to time, scooting along so quickly. Her baby blue eyes melt your heart. After a quick clothing change to a pink tutu, it was time for her cake smash! Amelia wasted no time digging in and getting that lilac frosting all over her face. She also was enthralled by the pink balloons sitting next to her. Happy first birthday, Mila! 
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Is your little one growing faster than you can believe? Schedule a portrait session with me today!

 

a.photographer amanda12345@gmail.com (C) a.photographer 2017-09-13T16:25:33Z 2017-09-13T16:25:33Z
http://www.aphotographer.me/blog/2017/8/sunny-summer-afternoon-lehrke-family-norwood-young-america-family-photographer sunny summer afternoon | lehrke [family] | norwood young america family photographer
It was an absolutely beautiful night at Baylor Park with one of my favorite families: the Lehrkes! A slightly hazy August evening made the perfect backdrop to take some updated family portraits for this fun family. Along with the usual family of 4, we also included Grandma & Papa, and Uncle Lenny in the session too! We all had a great time, laughing together and swapping stories about mine & Mitch's recent wedding day. Uncle Lenny had fun teasing Ty & Lexi, making faces at each other. It was so fun to get photos of the grandparents with their precious grandkids. I don't think enough people have nice portraits with important family members like this. We made a few photos happen that haven't been taken in many, many years, like Nettie & Lenny with their two boys. We eventually made our way down to the lake and the kids had fun running around on the dock. Before we wrapped up, Lexi jumped up onto her dad's knee and posed so cute with her legs crossed. Thanks for the fun night, Lehrke family! Excited to officially call you family! 
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When's the last time you got the whole family together for some updated portraits?
Send me a message to schedule your family portrait session today!

 

a.photographer amanda12345@gmail.com (C) a.photographer 2017-08-07T19:43:06Z 2017-08-07T19:43:06Z
http://www.aphotographer.me/blog/2017/7/summer-lovin-chris-anne-engaged-minneapolis-couples-portrait-photographer summer lovin' | chris & anne [engaged!] | minneapolis couples portrait photographer
Chris & Anne wanted to do a series of summer engagement portraits to compliment their winter engagement session, and I was thrilled! To me, there's nothing better than a session in a wild flower field as the sun dips down in the sky, enveloping everything in its warm golden light. We met at one of my favorite spots near Minneapolis on a beautiful June evening. I loved Anne's adorable cowgirl boots! These images are going to look great at their barn wedding in October. I had a great time hearing about the places Chris has recently traveled to and the adventures their three dogs have gotten into. Anne's gorgeous blonde hair looked so stunning in the golden hour glow as the couple stared into each other's eyes. I cannot wait for their wedding this fall! Congratulations, again Chris & Anne on your engagement! 
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Are you in the midst of planning your happily ever after? I love photographing love!
Send me a message for more information on my engagement & wedding photography!

 

a.photographer amanda12345@gmail.com (C) a.photographer 2017-07-26T16:03:06Z 2017-07-26T16:03:06Z
http://www.aphotographer.me/blog/2017/7/summer-smiles-easton-one-year-portraits-mayer-mn-family-portrait-photographer summer smiles | easton [one year portraits] | mayer mn family portrait photographer
They grow so fast! Time takes on a whole new meaning with you have a little one. Easton is no exception! I feel like it was just yesterday when I met Easton as a little, fresh newborn peanut, taking his newborn photos on a local gravel road. I love seeing Easton's blooming personality now at a year old. Of course, his mom Lindsay picked the cutest outfit out for her little man - you can never go wrong with polka dotted suspenders! Easton has two little teeth, just on the bottom. When they make an appearance in his smile, your heart can't help but melt. Easton loves showing off standing up with the help of something to hold on to, no doubt he will be running and walking quite soon! After some fun in the sun, we wrapped up with a few portraits in my studio to cool off. Happy First Birthday Easton!
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Don't blink or these days will be gone forever! Babies don't keep, so be sure to schedule a one year portrait session with me today!

 

a.photographer amanda12345@gmail.com (C) a.photographer 2017-07-24T17:11:48Z 2017-07-24T17:11:48Z
http://www.aphotographer.me/blog/2017/7/he-asked-she-said-yes-xavier-emily-proposal-stories-white-bear-lake-photographer he asked..she said yes! | xavier & emily [proposal stories] | white bear lake photographer
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Xavier & Emily [proposal stories]
White Bear Lake, MN May 
What can I even begin to say about this awesome couple? When I first met up with Xavier & Emily at one of my favorite watering holes, it felt like we were fast friends. I loved hearing about their jobs, their cats, and their EIGHT years together! (It gave me hope!) Just like me, these two don't take themselves too seriously and are easy to laugh with. In order to book their wedding venue, they camped out for a week to be first in line! After we had been chatting for awhile, I asked them the inevitable question about the proposal..and boy was I in for a surprise! After so many years together, Xavier wanted to make it good. He gathered up all of Emily's favorite people to have them in on the plan. Its a bit of a read but oh so worth it. I will let their stories speak for themselves! Can't wait for your October wedding day friends! 

In Emily's words:
I woke up on the morning of May 28th to meet my mother for breakfast. We had made plans to do this several weeks previous and I was pretty excited seeing as we were going to one of my favorite restaurants. When I went to turn off my alarm clock I was surprised to see a small manila envelope labeled “READ ME”. Inside the envelope was a letter informing that I would be going on a TOP SECRET mission. I was to meet my mother and wait for further instructions from “secret operatives”. Of course, I thought this was bizarre but I was up for the challenge.

I arrived at the restaurant and found my mom waiting for me. I thought for sure my mother would have more information for me about this so called “Top secret mission” but she seemed just as puzzled as me when I showed her the letter. We proceeded to eat breakfast and talked as much as we could, though my mind was very distracted by why Xavier had left me this letter. After finishing breakfast and walking out to my car my mother finally pulled out a small cardboard briefcase labeled Clue #1. Inside I found a satellite image of a location with longitude and latitudinal coordinates. Xavier had showed me how to look up locations using these type of coordinates on the iPad just a week before…convenient right?

I followed the coordinates and found myself at the location where we first met. Back in 2008 we had met at a hotel where our mutual friends were staying after prom. I had met Xavier there and we had played cards and talked. Fast forward to 2016 and I found myself walking back into this hotel. Upon walking into the lobby, I saw Xavier’s Aunt. I immediately starting crying, because I knew that she had come all the way from the state of Virginia. I think at this point I was fairly certain that this scavenger hunt was going to lead to Xavier proposing. Xavier’s Aunt, Erin, gave me a key that lead to the room where Xavier and I first met and there I found a second briefcase labeled Clue #2.

Once again I followed the coordinates and found myself at the bowling alley where we had our first date. There I found one of my closest friends Jaime. Jaime lives about 90mins away so I was shocked to see her. Of course, she was holding a briefcase that said Clue #3. I grabbed the briefcase and Jaime and I headed to the next location.

The next briefcase lead us to the zoo where Xavier and I had our second date and had spent many more since. As I walked to the entrance of the zoo I had this whole process down. I scanned the crowd looking for someone that I knew. Sitting on a bench was another one of my close friends, Mel. Mel lived 4hrs out of town and I couldn’t believe that she was standing in front of me. She quickly handed me another briefcase with Clue #4 on it and the three of us jumped in my car, after seeing my favorite animal the giraffes of course!

Clue #4 lead us to the exact location where Xavier had officially asked me to be his Girlfriend. There I found two of our mutual friends. These two gentlemen got a little too much into the role of “Secret Operatives”, both were wearing aviator sunglasses and had James Bond music playing in the background. They “presented” me with briefcase #5. I looked at the satellite picture and without needing to put in the coordinates I drove to the final location.

I arrived at Matoska Park. This was the location where we spent most nights the first summer we were dating. We would sit on the dock and talk about life. On this dock was where Xavier had first said “I love you”. When I arrived at the park on May 28th I saw Xavier standing on that very dock waiting for me. At this point my stomach was mush. I was so nervous. I climbed up on the dock and Xavier was down on one knee. He managed to spit out the words “Will you marry me?” and of course I said YES!

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In Xavier's words:

I started planning the proposal two years in advance. Emily and I had been dating for 8 years before I popped the question so I had a lot of time to ponder on it. One thing that helped is we started talking about our wedding before we got engaged so I knew who Emily was going to have as her bridesmaids. The basic premise of the proposal was a scavenger hunt. I wanted the scavenger hunt to walk Emily through the first month of our relationship, so each location held a special moment for each of us.

The theme of the scavenger hunt was “secret agent”. I got these party bag cardboard brief cases from amazon. Inside each brief case was two aerial photographs of the next location. I used google maps and photoshop to give them a satellite surveillance look. On the back of each photograph was the longitude and latitude of where she needed to go. She was also told that a “secret operative” would meet her at each destination to give her the next clue. The “secret operatives” were her friends and people she was going to have in the wedding. It took me two months of making clues, contacting her friends, and planning the coordination of it all.

I talked with Emily’s mom a few weeks before the proposal. I had her call Emily and arrange to meet her for breakfast. Emily drove to meet her mom, they had breakfast, and Emily received her first clue and instructions. The first clue brought her to the Radisson Hotel in Roseville.

Emily and I met on prom night in 2008 at the Radisson. We went with a group of friends and did not know each other, the whole group stayed in two rooms. We ended up playing cards and just talking for most the night. Then the whole group crashed. The next morning, I had to ask a friend for Emily’s name and who she was, more on that later….

So, Emily punched in the longitude and latitude coordinates I left in the briefcase into to her GPS. Inside the briefcase was also a key to the same hotel room we met in. She drove to the hotel and found her second clue in the hotel room. The second clue brought her to Flaherty's Bowling Alley. Keep in mind I’m driving ahead of her with her friends in my car and dropping them off at each location. I had a stop watch to gauge how much time I had before she would arrive at the next location.

Back to 2008. My friend told me her name was Emily. The next weekend after prom my friend told me the group was going to a music concert at White Bear Lake High School and Emily would be there. So I went to the concert and later that night asked Emily for her number. I called Emily a few days later and asked if she wanted to go bowling. Flaherty's is where I brought Emily for our first date. We bowled a few games and I dropped her off at home…

Emily got to Flaherty’s where she met her friend Jaime. Jaime handed her the next clue and they both hopped in Emily’s car. The next clue brought Emily to the Como Zoo. Specifically, to the giraffe exhibit because that’s her favorite animal.

A week after our date at Flaherty’s Bowling Alley Emily called and asked if I wanted to go to the Como Zoo with her. I obviously said yes and picked her up. We were not there long before we had to leave. In May of 2008 a tornado struck the Twin Cities. It touched down in Hugo but the zoo had started to close everything down to prepare for the bad weather. As we drove away it started to look really bad. By the time we got to Emily’s house the wind was gusting and we ran inside to seek shelter. This is when I met her family. We all hung out and waited for the storm to die down, it was a good way to meet them…

Emily gets to the zoo and meets her friend Mel there. I had left money in the brief case so they could feed the giraffes. Her next clue brought her to this drainage ditch on the side of the road by her family’s house.

After the storm died down Emily and I decided to go on a walk. Things had been going pretty good up to this point. So, while we were walking I decided to ask Emily if she wanted to go out with me. She said, “sure”. I remember we were standing next to this drainage ditch in a very nonromantic location…

She arrives at the drainage ditch by her house to meet some of my friends who handed her the last clue. It lead her to the Matoska Park in White Bear Lake.

... At the time, I was living near Matoska Park with my aunt and uncle. Emily and I liked to go on walks and would hang out on this dock in White Bear Lake. We pretty much ended every night that summer on that dock, looking at the stars and just talking.

There I was standing on our dock, 8 years after I asked her out. The thing is White Bear Lake dried up. The dock wasn’t in the water, it just was piled up on the side of the lake. I climbed on top and just waited. I saw her car come around the corner and instantly got nauseous. I knew she was going to say yes, but I guess you still get nervous. Anyways at this point I kind of lost my memory. I remember she climbed up the dock. Said something snarky like, “you made me drive all over town, okay let’s hear it...” and I can’t honestly remember the rest. I was so nervous. I think I just said will you marry me.

She said yes.

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I love photographing love! Send me a message if you are popping the question or getting married soon!

 

a.photographer amanda12345@gmail.com (C) a.photographer 2017-07-17T18:16:12Z 2017-07-17T18:16:12Z
http://www.aphotographer.me/blog/2017/7/lakeside-cake-smash-granger-one-year-portraits-waconia-family-photographer lakeside cake smash | granger [one year portraits] | waconia family photographer
Suddenly a year has passed and we are celebrating Granger's first birthday. I met up with the super fun family at a local lake for some dockside portraits. We started with Granger and big sister Rosie chowing down on some gummy worms (aka "bait.") I think these two are definitely going to love fishing as much as their parents! Granger also got to check out a fun Ducks Unlimited car next to the cattails that was just his size. Then it was time for the dirt cake smash and goodness did he dig in! I loved his mom's ideas for the outdoor and fishing themed props, especially that cute bobber banner. Granger's cake smashing skills even impressed me! We snapped a few quick family portraits also before we completely lost the kids' attention on the warm afternoon. Always a fun time with this adorable family! 
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Do your children seem to be growing right before your eyes? Schedule a family portrait session today to capture these memories in time!

 

a.photographer amanda12345@gmail.com (C) a.photographer 2017-07-17T16:17:39Z 2017-07-17T16:17:39Z
http://www.aphotographer.me/blog/2017/7/riverside-love-josh-shanna-engaged-bloomington-mn-engagement-photographer riverside love | josh & shanna [engaged] | bloomington mn engagement photographer
Josh got down on one knee and the couple is planning their wedding for September! We met up on a sunny spring evening at one of Josh and Shanna's favorite walking paths near the Minnesota River Bottoms in Bloomington for their engagement portraits. I loved hearing about the places where their dog, Aseop the beagle likes to explore off the trails. One of the coolest spots was this area we call the "oasis" - all this fresh greenery with a spring in the middle of the woods. After a clothing change, we headed down the historic bridge to catch the last rays of the sunset. I cannot wait for their September wedding to celebrate! 
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I love photographing love! If you've recently got engaged, send me a message for more information on my wedding photography collections.

 

a.photographer amanda12345@gmail.com (C) a.photographer 2017-07-14T18:45:26Z 2017-07-14T18:45:26Z
http://www.aphotographer.me/blog/2017/6/hotel-ottumwa-wedding-brett-leanna-married-iowa-wedding-photographer hotel ottumwa wedding | brett & leanna [married!] | iowa wedding photographer
It was a balmy June day in Ottumwa, IA for Brett & Leanna to say I Do! We started off the morning with the ladies getting ready at Hotel Ottumwa, while the guys were just down the street at the AmericInn donning their pink dress shirts and turquoise ties. Leanna's poofy dress was an adventure to get on - lots of laughs were shared. Just around the corner at Central Park is where the ceremony was set up and was the perfect backdrop for wedding party & family photos. Leanna did a special first look with her dad there, as she wasn't seeing Brett before the ceremony. When it was time for the big moment, Brett was so excited to see his bride walking down the aisle. The ceremony was also full of laughs & happy tears as the couple said their vows and exchanged wedding rings. Brett & Leanna exited to the cheers of their excited guests. A few more family and wedding party photos followed the ceremony, getting back into the hotel just before it started storming! The colorful flowers & bright pink dress shirts popped against the darkening skies. The wedding party had a great time celebrating the newlyweds at one of their favorite watering holes - Tom Tom. Then it was time to head up to the ballroom for the reception which was so wonderfully decorated. Dinner was absolutely delectable and the speeches were hilarious and touching, all at the same time. Then it was time to dance the night away! Congratulations Brett & Leanna! 
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This amazing wedding day could not have come together without the help of many great vendors, services, and people:
Wedding gown: Bridal Connection, Ankeny, IA
Bridesmaid dresses: David's Bridal
Hair/Makeup: Karmen Rosson & crew, Burlington, IA
Shoes: Payless
Jewelry/Rings: Kohl's (engagement ring, groom's wedding band), Kay Jewelers (bride's wedding bands), Claire's (bridesmaids jewelry)
Men's attire: Melissa's (suits for groom & dads), KrisarClothing (pink dress shirts), Kohl's (Ties & pants)
Venue: Hotel Ottumwa
Florist: Debbie Mosley Nelson (mother of the bride)
Cake: Baker's Wife Bakery (Jacki Baker)
Catering: Hotel Ottumwa
DJ: DJ Doughboy (Brian Cutsforth)
Save the Dates: www.MagnetStreet.com
Invites & Programs: VistaPrint
Transportation: Roe's Party Bus
   
Looking for a fun wedding photographer to capture your big day? Send me a message for more information on my wedding photography packages!

 

a.photographer amanda12345@gmail.com (C) a.photographer 2017-06-30T16:45:41Z 2017-06-30T16:45:41Z
http://www.aphotographer.me/blog/2017/6/summer-fun-oliver-1-year-portraits-carver-mn-family-photographer summer fun | oliver [1 year portraits] | carver mn family photographer
Its hard to believe this cute little guy is already a year old! Oliver's bright blue eyes and little front teeth stole the show at his one year portraits on a bright summer day with his parents at a park down by the river. Walking since 10 months old, Oliver is always on the move and there's never a dull moment! You can just feel how much his parents love him. This little sweetheart is full of expressions and curiosity. His little blonde curls peeking out from behind that smile made my heart melt. Thanks for the fun afternoon, Oliver & family! 
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Before you can even blink, that first year flies by! Send me a message to capture these fleeting moments in your child's life!

 

a.photographer amanda12345@gmail.com (C) a.photographer 2017-06-30T13:53:45Z 2017-06-30T13:53:45Z
http://www.aphotographer.me/blog/2017/6/he-asked-she-said-yes-wes-becky-proposal-story-california-marriage-proposal he asked..she said yes! | wes & becky [proposal story] | california marriage proposal
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Proposal Stories: Wes & Becky
July 2016 - California
Wes and Becky decided on forever! I was so excited to hear that they got engaged and even more excited to be their photographer! This sweet couple is so easy to get along with and I have no doubt that their wedding day will be full of fun! We had a great time doing their engagement photos last fall; we started at the family property and then ended at Lake Waconia. I can't wait for their September wedding!
In Becky's words:
Wes and I were hiking in the Redwood National Park in Northern California on our trip out west. On our last hike of the day we followed a strenuous trail that led to the Pacific Ocean. I stopped to take a few pictures, and called for Wes to take a look at one that I thought turned out particularly well. He never answered, and when I turned around he wasn't there. I figured he followed the small trail down to the water, so I headed that way. When I turned the corner of the trail, Wes was waiting there down on one knee! I was extremely surprised - we had just finished a long hike prior to this one and I was getting pretty hangry. So the last thing I expected was a proposal.
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Getting ready to pop the question? Send me a message for more information on how I can capture this big moment!

 

a.photographer amanda12345@gmail.com (C) a.photographer 2017-06-26T16:56:00Z 2017-06-26T16:56:00Z