May 17, 2018
Last weekend, I photographed Laura and Brad’s Windrift Hotel Avalon NJ wedding! Laura and Brad are an adorably happy and simple couple and they chose this Jersey Shore venue because of their love of the beach. Every Summer, their families plan an annual Stone Harbor/Avalon trip so this was the perfect spot for their intimate, relaxed and nontraditional destination wedding!
Laura and Brad met as children on their childhood street. Brad, the charming blue-eyed boy, and Laura, the cheerful redhead, lived three houses away from one another. They may have met as children, but their love did not blossom until many years later when they were much older. Brad approached Laura at a bar in their hometown one evening and was undeniably flirting with her. He followed up with Laura weeks later to ask her about a concert she had attended since that night. Brad’s attentiveness, confidence and wit was enough to interest Laura and the rest is history! And here they are today, still charming and flirting with one another!
Brad was Laura’s first boyfriend, so it took her a long time to take the leap into a relationship. Brad waited a long time for Laura to admit she was his number one fan. Noncommittal Laura took time to figure out her feelings and eventually came back to Brad. He was tough to win over this time around, but finally caved (thank goodness!). Laura knew Brad was the one when he surprised her with her favorite flowers for her birthday after they began dating again. He wrote “thank you for being patient with me” which was sweet, but he was the patient one. She fell in love with his thoughtfulness, patience, and kind heart. Brad had his “ah-ha” love moment when they were snowed in together one winter. They relaxed, watched movies, snacked and played games. His favorite part was chatting about all of their favorite things. It was a happy day full of good humor and fun. Brad wished time could stop and they could hang out all day everyday because Laura was, no doubt, his teammate for life.
Engaged on 12/24/17 on Laura’s favorite day of the year, Christmas Eve! On that day, Laura woke up early, as always. She went for a long run, stopping by her parents to say “hello”. Meanwhile, Brad had called her three times—which was bizarre! When Laura returned home, Brad was already ready for their Christmas Eve brunch. Laura is always time conscious while Brad is less concerned with being on time, so why was he already ready? As Laura moseyed upstairs to get ready, Brad was downstairs, fiddling with his sweaty hands and practicing kneeling down on one knee. Laura finally marched downstairs, and to her surprise, her confident Brad seemed oddly nervous. He began by telling Laura that he wanted to start a Christmas Eve tradition, hiding an ornament on the Christmas tree every year! She loved the idea, but was bummed she didn’t have an ornament this year, but Brad did! She thought, “cool” and searched for it on the tree. To her surprise, Brad had picked an ornament resembling a shiny ring and when she turned around, he was on one knee, trembling and smiling. Waterworks began, and she listened as he asked her to marry him. It was a quiet, intimate, and perfect proposal. Then, he surprised her and invited their parents to brunch, which made Laura cry some more!
These two are off on an Italian honeymoon and will be visiting Rome, Tuscany, Florence and Venice! Now that they are married, they can’t wait to continue to travel together. Laura and Brad are best friends and they love each other’s company. They are looking forward to being best friends forever – they love to chat, laugh, and have fun. They are looking forward to finding their forever home and making it their own with Laura’s eye for decorating and Brad’s craftsmanship. These two see themselves with two children one day and their dream is to have a summer home at the beach where Laura works as a nurse, Brad manages his properties, and their children have summer jobs or just have fun!
Any advice for future bride’s planning?
Don’t do it in 5 months 😉 Stay organized, flexible, & true to yourself! Our wedding is a direct reflection of us. We incorporated our own quirks to make it uniquely our own! A bonus: hire your mother or sister to handle the small details—they know you best and love to help!
Thank you to Laura and Brad for allowing me to photograph your beautiful day! Enjoy Italy!
Every part of our journey through life is sacred and passes by way too quickly. Susan elegantly captures the story of your legacy from the beginning with marriage and throughout motherhood with each special season it brings.
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