THE JOURNAL

is an Atlanta Wedding Photographer who values folks' stories, and is passionate about capturing Genuine, Emotional, and Timeless photographs on their wedding day and beyond. Rocheal captures weddings around Atlanta, Georgia, as well as destination weddings around the world.

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THE JOURNAL

Backyard Wedding: From Atlanta to Connecticut. Thanks, Covid…

This might quite possibly be the longest experience I’ve ever shared with a bride and groom before… This gorgeous backyard wedding: from Atlanta to Connecticut. Thanks, Covid… Wasn’t supposed to ever be a backyard wedding.

It’s been almost 3 years since Emily and I started getting giddy together about her upcoming wedding. Whether you’re a vendor reading this, or a person who hires vendors, you know what it’s like to connect with people. And when the connection is great and stories flow and conversation is so natural, and everything is just perfect?? That was Emily in my inbox back in 2019 when she reached out about her wedding. She is amazing! Smart, driven, goal-oriented, crafty, authentic, hard-working, and communicates like a dream!

The Proposal

After Ryan sent Emily and her best friend on a scavenger hunt around Atlanta (including brunch where the couple had their first date, mani/pedis, and sentimental spots around the GA Tech campus), the girls would eventually land in front of Tech Tower where Ryan was waiting, down on one knee, to propose to his best friend.

(The proposal photo was taken by Hannah C. Stokes Photography)

The Wedding Plans

Planned for May 2, 2022 at a gorgeous Atlanta studio. Hopes for a dreamy ceremony and rockin’ reception… Emily’s wedding plans were coming together! Her parents adored Ryan, their entire friend group hit it off… It was a Dream Come True.

Then Covid hit. But, no problem!! Right? They’ll reschedule like everyone else did!

Backyard Wedding: From Atlanta to Connecticut. Thanks, Covid…

Twice…๐Ÿคฆโ€โ™€๏ธ

But no worries! Our rockin’ communication rocked on, and Emily’s rescheduled date nestled perfectly into my long list of Covid reschedules.

Then their wedding venue closed. And the 50 others they called were either already booked, or just wouldn’t book them.

Her groom was deployed and unable to come home, the world was on lockdown, and wedding plans were erupting… Emily tried to keep a smile.

Meanwhile, in my world, things were also erupting. Chain-reactively. With my own family at home, we watched the chaos explode around us. And my business… Not yet established, and still brand new, it was scary… Then watching my couples’ wedding dreams implode right in front of their eyes… It all sucked so bad.

Emotions and fears were high. Expectations were confounded.

And just as planned, Emily and Ryan committed their lives to each other privately on May 2, 2020 with just the two of them and a pastor. On a Zoom call after their tiny ceremony, their families celebrated from afar… Although thankful to receive His blessings, it’s hard to fully enjoy the little things when big wishes are on hold.

My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.

2 Corinthians 12:9

When Emily told me their news, I was so happy for her. But I found myself selfishly worried I’d never get to meet and serve them at that perfect wedding we dreamt of together. I’m embarrassed to say that!

Then in December of 2021, Emily called. I was beside myself to hear she was *still* planning a wedding! Having given up on venues, she happily decided to bring her beautiful wedding dreams together at her childhood home.

The Wedding

On July 15, Emily’s grandparents met me at the airport. ๐Ÿ™‚
Their rehearsal dinner was later than evening, where we celebrated their upcoming wedding with delicious food and drinks. What a blessing!

The Rehearsal Dinner

Finally meeting Emily, Ryan, and their family and friends– and seeing their FACES– was incredible!!! I cannot even begin to describe the humble gratitude I have to them for flying me to Connecticut to capture their dream wedding.

And the day was perfect. Poor Emily felt this looming feeling of something going wrong (yet again), but Third Time’s the Charm; the day was picture-perfect and flawless.

Enjoy… ๐Ÿ™‚

Getting Ready

Groomsmen Getting Ready

Daddy / Daughter Bridal Reveal

The Bride and Groom’s First Look

(What’s a First Look without your friends creeping?๐Ÿ˜‚)

(And, in pure Emily fashion, Chapstick. Is it just me, or can you tell they’re already married?)

Pre-ceremony snacks with Grandma ๐Ÿ™‚

The Ceremony

Reception

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