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Wild & Free Birthday Party

Chalk this birthday party up under the ahhhdorable category! Krista Lii dreamed up a modern, stylish party for her two little ones based around her family’s motto of “All good things are wild and free”, and the results are spectacular! Cute details abound in this party infused with natural elements, free-spirited kiddos, and chic sweets. Don’t miss any of the inspiration- there’s more in the gallery!

From Krista: I had such a great time styling this birthday party for my son Lucas and daughter Anneka. With their birthdays being only four weeks apart, we decided to combine their parties this year and throw one big birthday bash! As a mother who also happens to be a photographer, I’m all about the pretty little details that make parties extra special. I based the party theme around a quote that resonates with my free spirited family: ‘All good things are wild and free’ – Henry Thoreau. Nature was an important part of the concept, and outdoorsy elements such as feathers, woodland animals, birch bark straws, wildflowers and succulents really brought the ‘wild and free’ theme to life! I dressed my daughter in a floral crown, and my son in moccasins. We even had a teepee set up in the party room for an added whimsical touch! It was perfect. I was lucky to work with some creative and talented vendors; Sharon Ho of Bloom Cake Co. and Jessica Lee of Hello Baked designer cookies. They helped me style the perfect dessert table to go with the theme. The cake and sweets were displayed on real wooden tree stumps, and feathers adorned the loot bags being sent home with the kids. All in all, the party was a success and the theme was carried out just as I imagined!

Photography: Krista Lii Photography | Bunting: Scout & Acadia | Cake & Cake Pops: Bloom Cake Co. | Cookies: Hello Baked | DIY Decor: Krista Lii Paivel | Event Venue: Earthbound Kids Farm

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Outdoor Wedding in Limehouse, Ontario

Weddings in the woods get me every time. Not to mention the story preceding these lovely newlyweds - years of long distance over different countries and continents, Tim Hortons, advanced degrees – and they made it through! With some help from Make My Day Count, this ceremony certainly made for one beautiful homage to their past and future. Just take a look at Corina V. Photography’s pictures from the day here.

Colors
Seasons
Fall
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Elegant

From Corina V Photography…A Gorgeous Wedding Ceremony under a cathedral of tall trees on the Bride’s parents Estate, hand crafted split-log benches for 160 close friends and relatives.

Andrea (from Ontario, Canada) and Aaron (from Ohio) met at a church conference in the US and very quickly became friends, finding they had a very similar sense of humour and both enjoyed sarcasm. Over the two years following their first meeting, they casually corresponded – Aaron from Stanford University, where he was working on his PhD in Engineering, and Andrea from University College Cork, Ireland where she was studying Medicine.

Aaron came to Canada, and on New Year’s Eve 2010 he took her out to Tim Horton’s and declared his interest in getting to know her better. Despite the 8000km between them from Ireland to California, and the 8hr time difference, they corresponded and very quickly their relationship deepened.

While visiting his family during American Thanksgiving, they set out on Aaron’s family’s annual trip to cut down a Christmas tree. It was declared that the Canadian was going to be responsible for the role of lumberjack, so when they found a tree that passed the test, Aaron crawled under to “clear out some of the branches” before handing Andrea the saw.

When she crawled under, in the clearing she found an envelope with her name on it. In the card was a message asking her to do Aaron the “hono(u)r” (a diplomatic compromise between American and Canadian spelling) of becoming his wife, and at the bottom of the envelope was the ring! At this point, she was on her knees on the ground beside Aaron (him expectantly asking “Well, are you going to put it on?”) … but after a suggestion that they should reverse positions and he should be the one to put the ring on her finger, they got ourselves sorted with him on one knee, the ring on her finger and she said yes. Then they had her crawl back under to cut down the tree.

Andrea’s Top 3 Wedding Memories…
1. Invitations & programs – Our stationery was designed by my talented sister (maid of honor) with great attention to detail. She sketched the lace on my dress and used the pattern for the silouhettes of leaves on the invitation and program. In honour of Aaron’s love of math and academics, she used math operators in the stationery and introduced the bridal party with humorous multiple choice questions. She honoured both American and Canadian spelling (“The hono[u]r of your presence is requested”).

2. The nest carried by our ring bearer – Aaron proposed to me at a Christmas tree farm in his home town in Ohio. After some searching, we found the “perfect tree”, and in it, an abandoned nest. Aaron told me that the Canadian should be the lumberjack and cut down the tree. When I knelt down to begin sawing, I found that he had hidden the ring under the tree. He proposed, I accepted and we went home with a very special Christmas tree. I kept the nest as a memento, and felt it was very appropriate to use to carry our rings down the aisle on our wedding day.

3. The trees and our clear-top tent – For many years, I have dreamt of being married outside and hosting a wedding celebration in the woods. One of my favourite details of the day was the cover of the tree canopy, and particularly the way it was lit at night with spot-lights. Our clear-top tent for the reception allowed us to enjoy the illumined canopy during dinner. The Ceilidh at the end of the night was held out in a clearing in the woods, where we danced to Irish music with the canopy overhead illuminated with lights.

What Andrea loved about working with Corina V. Photography…I loved working with Corina. She was very forgiving of my scattered-ness. She drove all the way out to my parents’ house before the wedding to take a look at the property and discuss goals of the day in advance. On the day of the wedding, she was a pleasure to work with – everything from helping tie “the perfect bow” to plunging into the river to take photos of the wedding party. I am so thankful that I entrusted her with the job of capturing the day – I couldn’t be happier with the photos I now have!

What the Bride said about the Location of her Wedding…The trees and our clear-top tent – For many years, I have dreamt of being married outside and hosting a wedding celebration in the woods. One of my favourite details of the day was the cover of the tree canopy, and particularly the way it was lit at night with spot-lights. Our clear-top tent for the reception allowed us to enjoy the illumined canopy during dinner. The Ceilidh at the end of the night was held out in a clearing in the woods, where we danced to Irish music with the canopy overhead illuminated with lights.

The Bride talking about her Planners…Wedding Planners…Make My Day Count. Lana Glasgow and Denise Morris are true gems. They were very forgiving members of our wedding planning team, and very patiently dealt with my hectic schedule to help implement the day. They were very organized, task-oriented and efficient. They took initiative in investigating ways to make my ideas come to fruition. Where I had ideas and thoughts about the way I wanted things to be, they were facilitators, and made planning a great deal easier!

The Bride is a Doctor and the Groom is a Math PHD…the entire bridal party was comprised physicists, mathematicians, architects and engineers, hence the Math Equations as Table Numbers.

Photography: Corina V. Photography | Wedding Planner: Make My Day Count | Flowers: Make My Day Count | Cake: Paulette's Original Donuts | Bridesmaids Dresses: Anita Giesbrecht | Catering: Make My Day Count | Make Up: Minerva's Spa | Hair: Jane Williamson | Groom's Attire: Studio Suits | Bridal Gown: Sottero & Midgely | Venue: Private Residence

Romantic Fairytale Engagement Session

This engagement session at Cullen Gardens has everything beautiful in life (to me, at least): love, fields of dandelions, weeping willows, a good beard,  and one fabulous tulle skirt. Seriously though, what more could you ask for? It’s not every day life is this lovely, but when it is, we feel fortunate to get a glimpse of the footage. So sit back and enjoy the pictures from Photography by Caileigh, and don’t miss the full gallery.

Colors
Seasons
Summer
Settings
Garden
From Photographs By Caileigh….Steph and Taylor’s engagement photos were taken at Cullen Gardens in Whitby. The images were taken with a mix of film and digital, with the film scanned by Toronto’s Caribou Film Lab. Steph and Taylor were a dream to photograph not only because they are both gorgeous, but also because they are so incredibly in love with each other. They laughed their way through the entire shoot together. The highlight of this session is, of course, her fabulous skirt, which Steph had a friend custom make for the shoot! They are both eagerly counting down the days to their June 2015 wedding at Nestleton Waters Inn.

Photography: Photographs By Caileigh | Film Lab: Caribou Film Lab | Shoot Location : Cullen Gardens