Let me tell you friends: when it comes to true love fairytales, it doesn’t get more romantic than these two lovebirds. Think long-distance romance meets dreamy proposal and you are on the right track. So how do two perfect soul mates celebrate their I do’s? With a fabulous fall turned winter party in oh-so-beautiful Oregon. See it all captured by Kimberly Kay Photography right here.
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From Kimberly Kay Photography… This was a gorgeous whimsical Sisters, Oregon Snow wedding. The tempatures got down to -2 degrees, but that did not stop this gorgeous wedding from happening. It was a stunning candle ceremony and everyone danced the night away to the sounds from an amazing band. Floral and decor were provided by a family friend.
From The Bride… Having grown up in a small town in Iowa and then spending all of his college and adult years in Minnesota, Steven is a Midwest boy through and through. I have spent all of my life in a mountain town and tourist hotspot in the middle of Oregon, and am a lover of all things Pacific Northwest. When my friend, who moved out to Minnesota, told me she had met this guy who was “totally perfect” for me, I laughed at the absurdity of her suggestion and thought nothing more of it. Little did I know, she revealed to Steven something similar, and he too, at the mention of a 2,000 mile distance, rolled his eyes in skepticism. But as curiosity and serendipity would have it, he found himself writing me an introductory email that very week…
His wit and charm and the casual ease of our written conversations left me intrigued, and as the weeks went on, like Meg Ryan in “You’ve Got Mail”, I found myself more and more distracted by the hopeful thought of an email in my inbox and the man on the other end of those messages.
Two months of countless emails and a few Skype dates later, Steven flew out to meet me for the first time. We spent the next year and a half traveling back and forth from Minneapolis to Bend, and with each trip, the love grew deeper, the goodbyes got harder and the distance felt farther somehow. So like any good knight in shining armor would, Steven packed up his belongings and the friends and life he loved to see about a girl from Oregon.
After ten months of sorting through cultural differences and working out a relationship that became more real than ever, Steven proposed. He sent me on an all-day scavenger hunt, leaving clues at my favorite places and included my favorite people along the way. I arrived at our favorite restaurant with a fresh manicure and new dress (part of the clue rewards), and was led atop their private roof at sunset where the man of my dreams was standing with a bouquet of roses and the biggest grin I’ve ever seen.
I gave him a exuberant “Yes!”
For as long as I can remember, I’ve loved the idea of a fall wedding. It’s something about the dramatic change of seasons and the beautiful colors of nature that, in my mind, made the perfect backdrop for a wedding. The end of August proposal meant that fall was fast approaching and we knew we wouldn’t have much time to make my dream a reality. We went into hyper-planning mode and decided to go for a mid-November ceremony. As a professional makeup artist, I have established quite a few connections in the wedding industry which made our short timeframe more doable.
I knew I wanted a large venue to accommodate the expected 300 guests, but wanted to find somewhere that had a view of the mountains I grew up with and are so close to my heart. We settled excitedly on a rustic horse arena out in the country that fit my ideas perfectly. Throughout the entire planning process, I continued to tell my wedding planner that I cared about nothing as much as these two things: beautiful, soft, romantic lighting, and a really good party. Whatever we needed to do or forsake to make those two things a priority, we did.
The week of our wedding arrived and the weather was looking beautiful and perfect – 60 degrees and sunny. Then, in true Central Oregon weather fashion, 48 hours before our wedding, we encountered the start of what would be the largest snow storm in years. Friends and family flying from all over the country (including the entire groom party) were forced to rent cars and drive overnight across treacherous terrain to make it in for the big day.
I watched my ideas and plans for a fall-style wedding quickly get smothered by each additional inch of snow. With the best of my people all around me, we decided to quickly switch gears and make this event the most beautiful winter wedding that ever was. My bridesmaids searched the whole town for fur coats, friends helped clear out the local target and Costco of hand warmers for all the guests, and my wedding planner went to town to purchase any and all additional heaters from event places.
I woke up on the day of my wedding to nearly three feet of snow and, for the first time in days, a sunny and cloudless sky. The unforeseen weather events made my wedding day better than I could have ever planned on my own. The backdrop of a winters snow made the lighting inside the venue, filled with 1,000 candles in mason jars, and white lights strung throughout the rafters the exact kind of “magical fairytale” lighting I wanted. The colder-than-normal temperatures caused my guests to jump from their seats and onto the dance floor in order to keep warm, and in doing so, helped my dream for an all-out party come together better than I could have ever orchestrated on my own. This day is logged in my memory banks as the best day of my life, and the photos that Kimberly Kay captured so beautifully, remind me that it wasn’t all just a dream, but my actual reality.
The bitter cold and thick blanket of snow was a poetic homage to the boy from Minnesota, and reminded me, once again, that sometimes it’s the things you least expect that make life more beautiful.
Photography: Kimberly Kay Photography | Wedding Coordinator: A Leah Knight YPD Events | Bridal Gown: Bella Brides | Dessert Bar: Breezie Dueber | Live Ceremony Music: Bend Event Music | Live Reception Music: Precious Byrd | Winter Range Ranch: Winter Range Ranch Sisters, OR