April Weddings: Santa Barbara, California & South Bend, Indiana (5 Year Anniversary & 2 Year)

For this Weekly Wednesday blog post we wanted to share with you a couple of our favorite April weddings from the past 10 years! Spring is one of the most gorgeous and mild seasons for weddings, thus being our favorite season. Though summers are the most popular for weddings what with the warm weather, kids being off of school, teachers mostly being off of school, and summer vacations, Spring still has some of the most beautiful weather and foliage out of all 4 seasons. Here in our area of Indiana just an hour from Chicago and 10 minutes from Southern Michigan (with Lake Effect weather for us from Lake Michigan), Spring flowers often arrive in mid-April through mid-May (if snow and cold happen to extend out at the end of April). This being the case, not a ton of couples opt to have an April wedding (since playing it safe would be having a May wedding to avoid any snow), but when they do we get excited and keep an eye on the flowering trees and foliage in general!

This week the weddings we’ll be sharing are Lauren & Steven’s 5 Year Wedding Anniversary which happened to be this past week (wed on April 5th, 2014 in Santa Barbara, California) AND Abbey & Greg’s 2 Year Wedding Anniversary coming up on April 22nd (wed in 2017 in South Bend & Mishawaka). This is perfect because due to Greg’s job (and Abbey then getting a job there as a nurse), Greg & Abbey actually live in San Francisco, California (where they finalized Abbey’s move to after their wedding), SO this week we’re actually celebrating the weddings of two sets of Callifornia married couples!

We’ll first start with Lauren & Steven’s Wedding back on April 5th, 2014 in Santa Barbara, California. These two were wed 5 years ago this past week! On their wedding day these two got prepped and ready near Butterfly Beach, had a beautiful trolley to transport they and their bridal party around for portraits by the beach as well as at Santa Barbara’s Mission (in the Rose Gardens), and finally headed to their dreamy ceremony spot: Outside near the beach of the Pacific Ocean!

Their reception was right by the beach as well at the gorgeous Chase Palm Park Pavilion! These two got to have their cocktail hour outside (complete with cornhole on the grass near the ocean) and then migrate guests into the indoor portion for cake cutting and dinner. After eating, guests were encouraged to head back outside for Steven and Lauren’s First Dance, then open dancing all under the gorgeous big string lights! All-in-all it was a gorgeous wedding day for Lauren & Steven with so much time spent in the beautiful outdoors between the beach at the Pacific Ocean, to the historic Mission, to beautiful Rose Gardens.

Next up for one of our favorite April weddings was Greg & Abbey’s local wedding here in South Bend & Mishawaka, Indiana! These two got ready at a hotel in Mishawaka (adjacent city where Abbey lived prior to moving out to California with Greg), then headed to St.Mary’s College for their ceremony! Since it was during the school year, their ceremony was on St. Mary’s College’s campus (Abbey’s alma mater) in the Church of Our Lady of Loretto which is a uniquely gorgeous round Catholic church with a MASSIVE mosiac tiled dome ceiling and round room with pillars! The church only allots 10 minutes after the ceremony for portraits, so we captured some quick photots of Greg & Abbey, then captured their formal family portraits right outside on the steps of the church.

For bridal party portraits and photos of the two of them, we stuck to St. Mary’s gorgeous flowering campus! After gorgeous portraits around campus, these two and their bridal party poured into their limo and headed to The Whiskey Exchange in downtown South Bend for a quick drink before their reception in Mishawaka. Once wrapped up there, they all got back into the limo and headed to their reception at Riverside Terrace (their reception venue in Mishawaka). ((It was pretty cool capturing them in that space because Jenny had grown up playing/ practicing with her travel Junior Olympic Volleyball team there before it was converted into a reception hall, hence the huge vaulted ceilings and expansive floors)!

At the end of the evening, we took these two outside into the huge park there by their venue and took some sunset Newlywed Portraits of the two of them on a light-up bridge before they started up a photobooth at their reception and started opening up their late-night hot dog bar for those who had been dancing during open dance.

We hope you enjoyed these throwbacks to a couple of our awesome past couples celebrating their 5th and 2nd Wedding Anniversaries out in their homes in California this month! Lauren & Steven and Abbey & Greg: Happy Anniversary and we hope that you’re enjoying life with your little families out in California!

We will actually be out-of-state these next two Wednesdays, so coming up we’ll be sharing a couple travel blog posts from an Ohio adventure and also an Arizona adventure for our final two April blog posts (things we haven’t yet shared on here) before capturing Katie & Kevin’s Spring Engagement Session also in April in their home of Chicago! Their Engagement Session will be our first blog post of May (on Wednesday May 1st) which is fitting since in May we’ll be capturing mainly upcoming weddings and Engagement Sessions in Indianapolis, in South Bend, for our Nashville couple, and more! Stay tuned for some exciting travel blog posts this month before jumping right back into the regularly scheduled Engagement Sessions and weddings throughout the end of April and all of May & June to finish off spring!