It occurred to me the other day that I have known Maura for almost 20 years, though admittedly I knew her as "Molly" and didn't actually know her real name was Maura until several years into my friendship with her older sister Tara. I met Tara my freshman year of college. We were in several of the same marine science classes and had both decided to join the rowing team that fall. We bonded over biology classes, 2am nights and 4am regatta mornings. I first met Molly (Maura) when she came to visit Tara one weekend during our freshman year. Having grown up with one younger brother, I was amazed at the sisterly bond the two shared. Tara and Maura spent time together whenever possible and "Molls" became a familiar face over the next four years. In the subsequent years Maura grew up and became a total badass; working in the Middle East and then back in DC in a job that my marine science/ photographer brain can barely comprehend. During that time she also met a sweet, crazy smart, beer loving gentleman named Eric. I was delighted when I received a message from Maura and Eric, asking if we would be interested in photographing their wedding. The obvious answer was YES!
Midnight before our departure found me furiously packing. It seems no matter how early I start the process I always end up in a state of methodical, last minute packing, unpacking and repacking. For days I had been charging batteries, eliminating unnecessary pieces of equipment and trying my best to consolidate what typically takes up the entire trunk of my car into one checked bag and two carryons. I like to be prepared. For anything. I like to have backups for my backups, enough gear for 4 photographers and anything else I might need to McGiver anything that might break, tear or fail during a wedding. When I show up to a wedding, my clients see my shoulder bag and gear bag but most of them have no idea what else is lurking in my trunk...just in case. The notion of having to fit my preparedness in a much smaller amount of space than usual was simultaneously daunting and liberating.
On Friday morning Mikey and I left cold, rainy, gray Vermont and stepped out into warm, green, sunny DC. We met the bride and groom and then left to check out the venue. The grounds at Riverside on the Potomac are incredible. The venue boasts a lakeside patio, an adorably tiny, restored log chapel and a gorgeous, massive, barn. We got a tour from wedding coordinator Jessica and then headed back to the hotel to grab our gear and make our way to the welcome party to mix and mingle and take photos of the guests as they arrived to greet the bride and groom.
The next morning we awoke to rain. We split up to spend time with the bride and groom while they got ready and then made our way to the venue where the guys sipped whisky in the rustic stables while the ladies put on their finishing touches in the owner's stunning farmhouse. Despite the rain, we found enough cover for family photos (thanks to my amazing husband for holding and umbrella over me and my camera so that I could step back into the rain for the best vantage point). There ceremony took place on the stable porch, out of the rain but with a view of the lawn and flowering trees in the background. After the ceremony the rain let up enough to scoot out for photos with the wedding party and we were even graced with enough light to sneak in some sunset photos.
The rest of the night involved toasts, dancing and beer brewed by the bride and groom for the event. How cool is that???
Mikey and I headed home early the next morning, exhausted but ecstatic. Thanks to Maura & Eric and their families for a fantastically fun weekend! We wish you a lifetime of happiness. You two are the coolest!
Venue: Riverside on the Potomac
Coordinator: Jessica of JEM Events
DJ Mark: www.djmaskell.com
Makeup: Lena Turner
Catering: Smokin' Willy BBQ
Florist: J Morris Flowers
Special thanks to Jessica and Mark of JEM Events and DJMaskell for being such a dream team and for working with us around the wacky weather!