It's something I've said before, but with Lee + Tera, it's absolutely impossible to know where to begin. Through this season of their lives, it's been an honor to become friends with them, and that's why, by the time it arrived to their wedding day, it felt as though I was celebrating with them, and capturing their day took on even more meaning. These two have such a bond, such a true friendship, that it's just a joy to be in their presence and celebrate with them. To understand them a little better, Tera is a person who is her own sunshine. Her smile radiates, and anyone who meets her will understand what I mean. Lee is also his own force; the calm, steady, yet funny counterpart to Tera. Together, they are such a wonderful couple, and capturing their connection on their wedding day was a joy.
Choosing to have their Cincinnati wedding at Greenacres Foundation, their wedding venue was absolutely stunning. From the stone mansion, to the manicured lawns and fountains, to the fantastic reception area, complete with an epic entryway, no detail was overlooked by their planners and venue. Every moment was tailored for them, and it was a Cincinnati wedding venue that I will certainly remember! But not to be distracted by the beauty of the location, Lee + Tera's families and friends are some of the most wonderful people I've had the honor of spending time with, and that made the day even more fun to be a part of.
From the start of the day, Tera arrived with a smile on her face, ready to go. But it wasn't just Tera; her father came with her, immediately cracking jokes and making everyone laugh. It's easy to see where Tera get her innate happiness; both her mother and father exude joy, and it's such a great day when people are genuinely happy to celebrate the couple getting married. Lee's mother was no different; listening to her tell stories of when she first met Tera and knew she was the one that would hold her son's heart had me in tears, and I felt the love she had for the two of them as she sewed Tera's "something blue" -- a patch of a windmill from the Netherlands, her home -- into Tera's wedding dress. Everyone there had such an investment in Lee + Tera, and it was wonderful to hear their stories of Lee + Tera, and feel their affection for the two of them.
Throughout the day, moments abounded between the families, with Tera's first look with her father being such a touching moment, to Lee seeing Tera for the first time, and the overwhelming joy they exuded. Tears of happiness fell freely, which is always something I love to capture. As we reached the time for the ceremony, guests arrived, and excitement grew. Tera's father surprised her with a Mercedes G Wagon to drive her to the wedding ceremony, which was one of the highlights of the day. As she rode in, and Lee saw her coming toward him, emotions ran high, and I don't think there was a dry eye in the crowd as Tera reached Lee at the altar. Their vows were sweet, and Lee's triumphant first kiss, as he lifted Tera high in the air, was one I doubt anyone will ever forget!
After such a wonderful ceremony, it's only natural that they would move into one of the most epic dance parties I have ever been a part of! These two have a group of friends and family who know how to get down, and it was an absolute blast to jump on the dance floor with them and catch them in their element. From the heartfelt toasts to the fantastic dancing from Lee's college friends, this wedding party was a blast, and it was a great time from start to finish.
Lee + Tera, you already know this, but I adore you two! Thank you so much for entrusting me with your wedding day, but more than that, thank you for becoming such wonderful friends. I'm so excited for your futures, and selfishly, I can't wait to have you back in Cincinnati! Thank you for being amazing, and your wedding was one for the books.
Special thanks to Bryan Surgener, from Bryan Surgener Photography, who came to second shoot this wedding with me. If you want to have your mind blown, head over to his website and check out his work!