Every.single.day here at SMP, we feature gorgeous weddings.  Those stop-you-in-your tracks kind of weddings that warm your heart with details that are beautiful in ways we didn’t know could exist.  And at the heart of every devastatingly gorgeous soiree?  An amazing love story.  A meeting between two people that were meant-to-be in every which way.  A love story like the one these two sweethearts shared… one that started as an office friendship, transitioned into romance while deployed in Afghanistan and culminated in an amazing celebration in Canberra.  Be sure to read the bride’s beautiful story below… and then see all of the pretty captured by John Benavente right here.      

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From the Bride… Tyson and I first met 6 years ago at work. Although we knew each other by sight, our paths diverged and didn’t cross again, until 3 years later… in the middle of a warzone – in Kandahar, Afghanistan.

We quickly became close friends. Months later, a ‘kiss lead to a conversation’ and Tyson managed to convince me that he had serious intentions. Sixteen days later we were declaring that we never expected to go to war – and fall in love.

Tyson proposed on the deck of our little house once we were back from Kandahar. As he said, we’d dreamt about being home when we were in Afghanistan – and we couldn’t think of anywhere else in the world we’d rather be. Or anywhere else in the world he’d rather propose.

Tyson loves to tell people that within 36 hours I had the venue booked (which is true) and within about three months I had the entire wedding planned. Hours spent pouring over Style Me Pretty meant I knew exactly how I wanted everything to look. We wanted the wedding to be fun, relaxed and a little luxurious. To us, certain things were important – wonderful food and wine for people to enjoy, good music to make people dance, lots of beautiful flowers to light up the room and attention to detail to make everything look (effortlessly) beautiful. Being New Year’s Eve, we also built the city’s fireworks display into the running schedule, and celebrated midnight with a countdown, sparklers, party horns and appropriate 80′s music. The weather was thankfully perfect on the day and everything went according to plan – including our gorgeous dog, Scotty, who performed his role as ring bearer perfectly.

I never would have dreamt that when I deployed to Afghanistan three years ago, love amongst the poppies of Kandahar, Afghanistan would result in a public declaration of love amongst the roses in Canberra.

Wedding Photography: John Benavente Photography | Ceremony Venue: House of Representatives Rose Gardens, Old Parliament House in Canberra, Australia | Reception Venue: The Lobby Restaurant in Parkes, Australia | Floral Design: Poetry in Flowers | Event Design + Planning: The Bride | Wedding Cake: Sugar and Slice | Wedding Invitations: Laura K Invitations | Wedding Stationery: Monica Cook | Wedding Registry: Wedding Gifts Direct | Wedding Dress: Cobalto by San Patrick | Bride’s Jewelry: Regina B + Samantha Willis | Bride’s Shoes: Nine West | Bridesmaids’ Attire: Nordstrom |Bridesmaids’ Jewelry: Silverbin | Bridesmaids’ Shoes: Arbie Goodfellow via Endless | Groom’s Attire: John Hanna