Catherine & Canada’s Backyard Wedding

Over the past few summers, I have to say that I have fallen in love with backyard weddings. While I have my favorite venues with beautiful decor and lavish textures and grand architecture, there is just something about a family home that makes a wedding feel that much more sentimental. And I love sentimental things. So when Canada and I sat in my basement with Catherine on Skype from California, I loved the plans they were sharing with me for their lovely celebration at Catherine's parents' home. Intimate weddings like this one seem to be growing in popularity- and I understand why! Don't get me wrong, I love a luxurious soiree at gorgeous locations as much as the next photographer. However, what I adore about my job is the variety of ways that couples choose to share their nuptials with their loved ones. I believe that your wedding should reflect the two of you and your love story. The big and fancy party isn't for every couple and that is absolutely OK. It's the best! Because a wedding day like this is just perfect for a pair like these two. You might recognize them from their gorgeous sunrise engagement session that took place the day before the wedding! I do love photographing details among family things, and of course I take the utmost care. Catherine's parents' home reminds me of ours; it's filled with treasures that you just know were carefully gathered over years of traveling, gift-giving, art markets, and selectively curated purchases. You can learn a lot about a family when they welcome you into their home-sweet-home. Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0002Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0005Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0006 Catherine's mother got her wedding pearls from China! Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0008Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0009 I loved the finger-print design on their wedding rings. Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0015 Canada has a long history of military service around the world, and wore a Canadian tartan kilt and sealskin coat with all the finishing touches. He was a trooper on this hot and sunny August day, but it was worth it! Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0014Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0013Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0010Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0017Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0021 My assistant, Felicia, did a gorgeous job of capturing some beautiful alternate angles throughout the day. Look out, world, because she's just getting started! Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0023Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0025Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0027Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0030Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0032Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0034Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0037 "One last thing..." says Canada, and catches us photographers a little off-guard. Ha! Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0040Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0042Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0045Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0047 The bride and groom shared a first look in the back yard before we whisked them away for a little pre-ceremony portrait time... Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0048Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0050Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0051 We took a short drive down the street to a quiet park, where they slipped their wedding rings on. It was a sweet moment! Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0052Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0054Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0056Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0057 Definitely my favorite portrait of the day... Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0059Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0060Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0063 Aren't these little flower girls THE CUTEST?! Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0066Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0067Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0064Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0068Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0069 The girls' bouquets were put together just before the beginning of the festivities, from the buckets of flowers from the garden where we had their engagement session. πŸ™‚ I love home-made bouquets! Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0070Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0071Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0072Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0073Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0074Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0075Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0077 I loved the simple and cozy feel in their dinner tent. Everyone in the round, enjoying one another's company! Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0078Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0079Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0080Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0081Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0084Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0086Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0087Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0089Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0090 So very Canada... Always prepared. <3 Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0092Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0091 I love tearful ceremonies. Maybe just because I'm a hopeless romantic at heart, but something about happy tears just fills me with joy! Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0096Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0097Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0098Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0103 This little guy was a very important part of the day: the footman! Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0099Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0101Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0102Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0110Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0104 Catherine is a professional opera singer, which just made me swoon- my father and I have enjoyed many operas together. So when Catherine sang to her groom, it took my breath away! And I'm sure it was a moment he'll not soon forget. How romantic! Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0106Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0108Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0111Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0113Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0114 What else would one use to cut an ice cream cake? Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0116Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0118 I thought this was so very funny and endearing. At dinner, Canada's mother presented Catherine with the official receipt from his adoption. I'm sure it wasn't an easy keepsake to part with, but what a touching memento to make their marriage official! Catherine is officially the proud owner of a wonderful husband. πŸ˜‰ Madison_Backyard_WeddingCC_0119 To Catherine and Canada and your wonderful families and friends, I'm so glad you found me. I'm so glad I had your wedding day available and that I was able to be a witness to such a beautiful and intimate celebration. Thank you for sharing your memories with me, and including me in your wedding Selfie-Stick-Selfie! CatherineCanadaSelfieStick1000