Maija + John // Backyard Wedding // Vesper Wisconsin

Maija and John are just good freaking people. They're the kind of people who honestly deserve happiness. They are funny and family oriented and from the moment you meet them they feel like your oldest friends. I'm obsessed with them. Whatever. I said it.
Maija and John balance each other out so well it's hard to believe there was ever a time when they weren't together. They are best buds who love traveling, seeing live music, and drinking beer. So yeah, they're my kind of people and I knew their wedding was gonna be pretty damn amazing. Honestly I would have been pissed if they had let someone else photograph it ;)

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Prep pictures are always some of my favorites. I love watching my couples hang out with their closest people. The excitement is contagious. 

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I had to climb onto the window ledge in my socks to hang Maija's dress up... totally worth it.

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Maija and John met at Jennings, so obviously they had to have their first look behind the bar. I 100% support this decision. 

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Weddings are.stressfuuul. Plain and simple. But the moment Maija saw John she went from anxious to totally and completely relaxed. That's why first looks are the best.

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This wedding party though!!! I already told Maija that I want her and John to have a party with their girls and guys so I can hang out with them again.

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Maija and John whispering and laughing during their ceremony!! I'm NOT crying!

I already said this but weddings are stressful. So I'm totally fine with breaking for drinks.

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I love seeing backyards get transformed into pure magic. All the greenery and cake on every table. Yup. It was gooooood.

I don't mean to brag, but my mom made those cakes. And those sugar flowers. If you want the most gorgeous and most delicious cakes. Pam is your lady!

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I hound all my couples to sneak away from the reception so we can take more awesome pictures. And obviously so they can make out.

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I only spent approximately 15 minutes off of the dance floor. Because these are the most fun photos and I like to party.

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Sarah + Anders // Norwegian Backyard Wedding // Stevens Point Wisconsin

I knew this wedding was going to be one for the books right away. Sarah and Anders got married, surrounded by their closest friends and family, next to the river in Sarah's mother's backyard. It was overcast and cool (my absolute favorite kind of weather). It was laid back and intimate and there were so many cool details incorporated into their day.
Sarah and Anders met on a cross country skiing trip and they've been walking through life, hand in hand, ever since. Anders loves that she gets excited about everything big and small (like sprinkles). Sarah loves that he's steadfast and adventurous. Even though they've been separated by thousands of miles because of school and work, it's only made their love stronger. Everyone around them speaks so highly of them. Sarah and Anders are both smart and love to travel. They're the type of people who excel at everything they do, but the thing they're best at is loving and supporting each other.

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Anders is Norwegian so he and Sarah opted to wear the traditional bunad. Sarah's dress was handmade in Norway. I think it might possibly be my favorite to date. 

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Ladies- find yourself a partner who will fix your crown ;)

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For the record, I one hundred and ten percent encourage couples to walk down the aisle together. 

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This ceremony was so personal and heartfelt and perfect in every way. It makes me really happy when couples take the time to really plan out this part of their day. I mean, that's the whole reason the day is happening. Make sure your ceremony is meaningful and special and true to you. 

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There was no shortage of adorable children for me to hang out with. So that's a plus :) It rained on and off throughout cocktail hour and dinner but honestly I never did mind a little rain on a wedding day.

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I tried to learn as much Norwegian as I could but the only thing I really remember now is "Skal!!!" aka what you shout before you take a shot. So really what else do I need to know? 

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Sarah's friend Anna read this passage from The Velveteen Rabbit during the ceremony. I could barely keep it together then and every time I've read it since the affect is the same. 

"What is REAL?" asked the Rabbit one day, when they were lying side by side near the nursery fender, before Nana came to tidy the room. "Does it mean having things that buzz inside you and a stick-out handle?" 
"Real isn't how you are made," said the Skin Horse. "It's a thing that happens to you. When a child loves you for a long, long time, not just to play with, but REALLY loves you, then you become Real." 
"Does it hurt?" asked the Rabbit. 
"Sometimes," said the Skin Horse, for he was always truthful. "When you are Real you don't mind being hurt." 
"Does it happen all at once, like being wound up," he asked, "or bit by bit?" 
"It doesn't happen all at once," said the Skin Horse. "You become. It takes a long time. That's why it doesn't happen often to people who break easily, or have sharp edges, or who have to be carefully kept. Generally, by the time you are Real, most of your hair has been loved off, and your eyes drop out and you get loose in the joints and very shabby. But these things don't matter at all, because once you are Real you can't be ugly, except to people who don't understand." 
"I suppose you are real?" said the Rabbit. And then he wished he had not said it, for he thought the Skin Horse might be sensitive. But the Skin Horse only smiled. 
"The Boy's Uncle made me Real," he said. "That was a great many years ago; but once you are Real you can't become unreal again. It lasts for always.”