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Kelly and Vincent love Georgetown. It is where they spent time together when they first started dating and where they will be getting married next year. It seemed perfect to also celebrate their engagement along the charming, historic streets of this beautiful neighborhood.

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Kelly shares, “Vincent and I met through friends in the summer of 2014. Our relationship started off in a unique way since we were long distance–he was at law school in Florida and I was working and living in DC. While most people would think starting a relationship long distance sounds crazy, I found it was a great way to get to know each other since we would just spend hours talking to each other on the phone and through FaceTime. It also made us really take advantage of our time together when we got to visit for a weekend. Since I was living in Glover Park (right up Wisconsin Ave from Georgetown), many of our weekend adventures were in Georgetown–anything from shopping on M Street, getting drinks on the waterfront, or visiting the gardens of Dumbarton Oaks. Needless to say, Georgetown is a meaningful place for us as it is where our relationship really blossomed.”

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Kelly continues, “We are getting married at a church in Georgetown this coming spring so we felt it was only appropriate to have our engagement shoot in the neighborhood as well. After a week of rain in July, the sky cleared and we had a beautiful evening shoot on P Street and on the grounds of Georgetown University! We hope our wedding date is just as lucky with the weather. We are so excited to tie the knot in front of our closest family and friends at a place that holds so many special memories for us.”

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Congratulations Kelly and Vincent!

Hannah and Nat were married at the beautiful Meadowlark Botanical Gardens in Northern Virginia. Hannah got ready for the day at her parent’s historic home in Vienna.

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Nat got ready with his groomsmen at a nearby hotel.

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Meadowlark’s Atrium opens to a lovely terrace surrounded by flowers–the perfect place for the ceremony!

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Hannah shares, “While it was very hard to choose my absolute favorite moment from the wedding day, I would say that the little things that went wrong ended up being the things I loved the most. During the ceremony, one of our rings fell while the pastor was talking about the rings being everlasting and indestructible. We also ended up having to push a golf cart up a small hill while taking pictures (poor Jessica had to help). Nat and I laughed through it all and I think it was a good representation of what our life is going to be like together. Things will go wrong but there will always be time for laughter.

My other favorite moment was after we were married, when we finally turned around to face everyone. When I was walking down the aisle I was really only looking at Nat and obviously while we were getting married my back was to everyone. It was incredible to see all of our friends and family smiling back at us. The love and support was overwhelming.”

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The couple shared their first dance to Meghan Trainor and John Legend’s song Like I’m Gonna Lose You.
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Hannah continues, “In our new married life, I think I’m most excited for a lifetime of discussions. Nat truly is my best friend and it’s always been incredibly easy to talk to him. I’m greatly looking forward to talking about everything from books, movies, and life changes to heated debates about who cleans more dishes.”

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Congratulations Hannah and Nat!

Also, check out their Central Park engagement session here.

Special thanks to the team:
Venue: Meadowlark Gardens Atrium
Caterer: Great Blue Heron Catering
Hannah’s makeup: Melissa Vasquez
Mothers’ makeup: Ana Fleming
Cake: Becky Fairchild
Invitations: Hannah Margaret Smith illustrator
Wedding Dress: Saja Wedding
DJ: Chris Laich Music Services, Aaron Platt
Ceremony and cocktail hour music by: Celtic Music for your Wedding
Florist: Violet Gardens Floral Designs
Engagement Rings: Frassanito Jewelers, Huntington, NY

Emily and Matt live on the Upper West Side and are expecting their little boy any day now!

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Emily shares, “After years of trying, we are so excited to finally have our lil’ dude on the way. Watching him grow from a tiny blueberry into a giant watermelon on the sonograms has been surreal, amazing and awe-inspiring. And this is just the beginning. We can’t wait to meet our little mini me!”

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The baby’s nursery is filled with stars and stripes, whimsical animals and a really fun monster mobile that Emily’s mom hand made.

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Congratulations Emily and Matt!

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Jessica and Michael were married on a beautiful spring day at the St. Columba Church in New York City with a reception at the New York Botanical Garden. The day began with preparations in the suite at the Eventi Hotel.

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Jessica and Michael shared a first look outside the church just before the ceremony. Jessica shares, “My favorite moment was our first look. All the planning. All the effort. All of it was worth it to see the look on Mike’s face. To see the man I will spend the rest of my life with so happy brought tears to my eyes.”

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After the ceremony, we all headed to the gardens for portraits and the cocktail hour. A special exhibit of glass artworks by world-renowned artist Dale Chihuly were on view throughout the gardens. We were able to take some photos with one of the dazzling pieces outside of the conservatory.

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Mike shares, “My favorite moment was a few moments in the late afternoon in between photos when the two of us were able to sit on a bench alone and just take it all in. That is when it finally started to hit me: that we did it! We were finally married!”

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Jessica shares, “For our venues, we chose St. Columba Church so we could be the fourth generation in Mike’s family to be married in that church. For the reception, we wanted something classic and romantic, yet a venue with its own flare. This is why we chose the New York Botanical Garden. We were able to have the natural beauty of the garden combined with the unique murals in the venue space to make this a very special once-in-a-lifetime event.

Once we had our venue, we knew our style was going to be classically floral themed – perfect for a spring wedding. Everything from the floral appliqués on my gown to the lush floral arrangements for the reception fit in with this romantic spring garden vibe.”

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Congratulations Jessica and Michael!

Special thanks to the team:
Church: St. Columba Church
Officiant: Rev. Fred Pelligrini, SJ
Reception: New York Botanical Garden, Garden Terrace Room
Caterer: Starr Catering Group
Cake Baker: Lulu Cake Boutique
Hair and Make-up: Once Upon a Bride
Bride’s Gown Designer: Bonnie Bridal
Bridal Salon: Glamorous Bride
Groom’s Tux: Black by Vera Wang
Florist: Bride & Blossom
Transportation: Luxor limo
Photo Booth: Iris Photobooth
Hotel: Hotel Eventi, a Kimpton hotel
Photography: Jessica Schmitt Photography with Eric Swartz

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Matt surprised Erica with a romantic proposal in Central Park. Details including a rain backup plan, a birthday candle wish, a knee drop, and two surprise photo shoots are all below!

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Matt and Erica are both single parents with very busy schedules, but were able to find each other online. They met for a round of chip and putt golf back on September 15th. Matt shares, “We both truly experienced love at first sight. It was the perfect day with a crystal blue sky offset by a soft breeze. We also actually had the entire course to ourselves. Since we were casual, we could just be ourselves. We were at ease (well, as far as first dates go). We had a total blast! We laughed just about every step of the way (and gazed quite a bit too). Everything was as it should be. And, after walking Erica to her car, I capped the date by giving her a lavender rose I’d stowed in my car.

Everything since that day and the proposal a few weeks back has been all we could possibly hope for. We flat-out love being together. My son Jake (16) and her daughter Greta (12) get along great too. We’re really lucky.

Now, fast-forward to April 22nd – Earth Day! I’d been planning the engagement for weeks. It was Erica’s birthday that following Tuesday, so I had the perfect cover for a special weekend in NYC. As it happens – up until then – neither of us were very familiar with “The City.” I got show tickets and booked the hotel some weeks in advance as well as made reservations for a special restaurant.

The one detail I hadn’t pinned down up until the day before was finding the right photographer to capture the moment. I corresponded and spoke with no less than 10 photographers. The options were all over the place. I didn’t get to speak with Jessica until late in the day, but it’s an absolute fact that I was hoping she’d be the one that came through. For one, I pretty much set my sights on proposing in Central Park and liked that she was close by. But, more than that, I did take notice of the sincerity in her voice when I left a message and then I really connected with how she presented so genuinely on the website. Everything fell into place late in the day with her being the final part of my big plans.”

There were a number of reasons why I wanted to go with the park, not the least of which that doing it at the restaurant wasn’t original enough and that I probably wouldn’t hold out having a ring in my pocket while waiting to do it at some point before, during or after our 8pm show. It was looking to be a nice day and I totally had set my sights on the image of leaning forward and having my knee on the back of a rowboat following the reservation I’d made at The Boathouse restaurant just before.

Jess was awesome in helping with the details. She actually sent me a map about how to get into that part of the park with a mark on it where she’d be standing in proximity to the boat and right down to how I’d angle the boat to get the best shot. That was it. I was ready. Everything was set. Then, to my near disbelief, it turned out to be a rainy day. So there I was, throughout brunch, looking out the window at all the rowboats lined up along the pond – not being rowed – and realizing my main plan washed-out right down the drain. All that planning and I’m suddenly coming up empty. Needless to say I was feeling a bit discouraged. Ok, I was totally sick to my stomach. But the one thing I knew is that I wasn’t going to let this stop me. This is when I had decided to do it and it was going to go down one way or another.

I found the opportunity to text Jess and try to work out Plan B. Actually, there were more than a few texts and emails throughout lunch while struggling to keep Erica clueless. Then I actually was able to sneak a quick call with Jess, which ironically led to the best option among all the others I’d painstakingly researched and arranged. She directed me to the Bethesda Terrace on the other side of the pond. I’d never been there. We worked it out that Jess would be wearing a red scarf so I’d recognize her and that she’d be standing where she thought would be the perfect spot to lead Erica. It was.

There – by that iconic stone railing and the arches a few feet behind her with the drizzle and fountain for ambiance – I turned to face Erica under her umbrella, still holding her other hand. She felt so right. I eased into the moment by telling her that I was wondering what it was she’d wished for when blowing out her birthday candle in the dessert I’d arranged minutes before at The Boathouse.

She looked at me almost shyly and said something along the lines of wishes told don’t come true. I asked her to try me and she admitted that she’d like to be my wife someday. It was then I looked more deeply into her eyes than ever before. I said that sometimes told wishes do come true. I was more in the moment than ever. I gave her a comforting smile and eased my right knee down to the ground. I had her.

She, of course, knew what was happening but somehow couldn’t quite process it at first. Perfectly confused, she softly asked, “This is it?” and I confidently replied, “This is it.” I think her saying “Oh my God” was somewhere in there too. The box remained hidden, clasped in my right hand while I took my time telling Erica how much I love her and why and that it would make me the happiest man on Earth to spend the rest of our lives together. I savored every moment knowing she was now doing the same. Here’s where I think we’ll leave words to be told by Jess’s work.

Of course, it wasn’t enough for me to just pop the question. I’d spent months working on a poem about our first date titled, “Foretold by a Lavender Rose.” It ended up being 22 verses, so that gave Jess plenty of additional time to photograph the moment. It wasn’t until about 2/3rds of the way through my reading that Erica later admitted noticing a photographer that seemed to have her sights on us. I honestly couldn’t have planned it any better, except for one last thing …

That Sunday turned out to be a perfect day for us to be back in Central Park to enjoy being on the grass field across from Tavern on the Green where we had brunch. I’d planned for us to make our way to the scene of the Fountain Terrace to reflect on the day before AND over to the rowboats which were now in full row. It wasn’t until about halfway through the hour that Erica noticed I’d teamed up again with Jess to do a second shoot of us in the boat this time.

I admit that I kind of needed the fulfillment of seeing through at least part of my original plan. It wasn’t quite the same without a knee to drop, but we definitely got some amazing shots with double thanks to Jess for capturing these moments we’ll cherish forever. She actually sent us an advance copy of our special moment, which we posted online. It got well over 1,000 “likes” and took us the entire train ride home to simply “like” the more than 500 comments we’d already received.

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Matt says, “Of course, everyone is eager to know when that next big day will be. Our current answer is that it will happen on a beach somewhere, sometime in 2018. For now, we’re fully enjoying simply being engaged.”

Congratulations, you two!

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