What a day!!! I completely forgot how adorable crazy these two are and I gotta say, it made for quite the day on my end, and I wouldn’t change it for anything else!

      I drove out to Sarah & Jon’s home out in the boonies of Ottawa, to which I questioned why anyone would live out here… Until I pulled into the driveway and saw how beautiful and picturesque there home was. I walked in to find the ladies hanging out in the kitchen, getting their hair and makeup done while the boys were upstairs doing lord knows what. Yes, they got ready in the same house and it was interesting getting them not to see each other before they left :P. Sarah was the picture of calm, no stress whatsoever. I bet she was calm because she started off her morning with a Hockey game, how many ladies out there can say they started off their wedding day playing hockey? Sarah was my first and I was proud of her, she’s a pretty cool bride, am I right? When I walked up to meet the guys, I was surprised by who I found. I had read the wedding parties names before heading out and all the boys names stood out to me. One was a past groom of mine (not my groom, but I photographed his wedding), and the other two I just couldn’t put my finger on it. When I walked into the room to see Phil and Drew I was completely surprised. It was like high school was happening all over again and I knew I would be in for a hilarious day. So fun story is that we all worked at McDonald’s what feels like a million years ago and we used to have so much fun there. I was so excited to get the rest of the day going. Something I didn’t know about Jon is that he plays drums and guitar, which I found out when the guys decided to head downstairs and do a quick jam session. Sarah & Jon gave each other very sweet gifts as well. Sarah had said not to spend money and to make something instead. Well Jon listened…sorta. He ended up gifting her a Tablet and a long letter. Jon had said, what do you give a girl that has everything? So he got her a tablet, and to be fair he hand made the box the letter was wrapped in. Sarah on the other hand gave him a framed picture collage of their relationship, a deck of cards with 52things she loves about him and a beautiful tie clip engraved with their wedding date. Her letter even had Jon tearing up and holding everything in. The two hours went by so quickly and it was time to be on our way. Again we had to coordinate the boys leaving without seeing the girls while they finished up but we did it. We were on our way to Lonestar Ranch to get this party started! Oh I forgot to mention, Sarah wears a watch that tracks her steps and I had to ask her like a bagillion times to remove it!!! Girl, I was not letting you get married with that thing on xo

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      I had never been to Lonestar Ranch before today and I have to say I was pleasantly surprised. There’s a really cool old barn with a cantina for guests and a silo, there’s also an adorable stone house and an area for lawn games. The reception space is directly across from the barn and that’s where the guests were hanging out before the start of the ceremony. It wasn’t long though before Bree, the wedding planner arrived and ushered the guests to the ceremony space which was around the side of the property behind the stone house. They have a lovely gazebo and white benches that line a wooden pathway. The entry to the space is very magical with a white wooden arch surrounded by trees to guide the guests along. The sun was shining as things started with Jon walking in with both his parents arm in arm. His mum was already super emotional while Jon kept his smile all the way to the front. The girls and boys walked in together as well, leading the way for our bride to make her grand entrance. Sarah walked in with both of her parents as well but I could see it in her face that she was holding everything in, she didn’t want to cry, but I saw it. As she walked up to Jon, he was holding it all in two. His lips curled up a bit for a small smirk but it was that single tear that dropped from the corner of his eye that had me. He took his bride by the hand and guided her to the gazebo and both of them burst into full blown smiles. The ceremony was a first for me because both Jon and Sarah memorized their vows, MEMORIZED! Who has time to memorize vows before a wedding, I know I wouldn’t be able too, but they did it. Jon did have a wee bit of a hiccup along the way and had to look at the officiant with a side eye and smile but the second he said one word it all came back to him and he was back on track. Everything went without a hitch, they Kissed and happiness ensued ♥ Usually after the first kiss is the signing of the official documents (which people don’t talk about often which I am guilty of) and I was so pleasantly surprised when I heard the first notes of music come out through the speakers as they went to sign. It was a cute softer version of the Jurassic Park theme song, a big smile came across my face, I knew I loved these two for a reason. They were announced as husband and wife and everyone got up to cheer and applaud them. They walked down the aisle as Husband and Wife with bubbles being blown into the wind by their guests.

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      By the time the ceremony and family photo session had ended the sun was completely hidden behind the clouds and we had an over cast day to get out wedding party photos done. The wedding party was thankful for this as it meant the heat was way low, bbuutttt the bugs were out and they were out for blood. Thankfully Bree came to the rescue again with some bug spray (THANK YOU BREE). I started things off with a few photos of Sarah & Jon while we waited for the bridal party to round up and I quickly got reminded of how kookie these two are. They took a couple pictures and were so cute and then they would look at each other and then quickly look back at me making faces. Jon looked at me at one point and was like; ”Do you want me to Nuzzle here?” to which I responded yes. He then proceeds to try and eat her face, again, and then just dips his head into her upper chest. Yep, I was in for it lol. He did the same thing during their engagement session, I should have known better haha. The boys also decided they wanted to be ridiculous every chance they got, from forming a circle to get a picture of their shoes, to posing like a highschool prom photo, to blowing bubbles on Jon… Which he opened his mouth and one went in and he didn’t like that so much as you can see below! We walked around the property and found the ”Tribal Council” area which was a large area with cut grass, wooden benches in a square surrounded by fields. We hung out here for a while, calling to the horse (that did end up coming over to us btw) and just having a good time. I ended things off with the happy couple close to the stone house so they could run off and enjoy the rest of their cocktail hour with guests.

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      PS: These are the faces they kept making at me… Sarah with her big surprised smile and Jon with that stare, he changed up the mouth every now and then though. I have many more photos with these faces haha ↓↓↓
      Ottawa wedding Samantha Danis Photography Lonestar Ranch
      The reception was help in one of the buildings on the property. It was like a beautiful barn look outside and rustic wooden inside with super cute touches of country with the white wagon wheels on the walls and Wagon wheel chandeliers. Sarah & Jon added their touches with some decor like the white linens with Blue table runners and napkins. They also had cute little bouquets of yellow and blue roses on the tables and of course a beautiful cupcake and cake display made by Sarah’s mum and sister. They had an epic sweets table (totally guilty of taking like two bags worth of treats, which I am eating is I write this), and a super cute guest signing board. So not only did they have a traditional guest book, but they also had a poster board with a silhouette of a bride and groom holding a balloon which guests were invited to put their thump print with ink in the balloon area and to sign. Thus creating a multicoloured balloon collage like the house in UP! I thought it was so cute and clever, I obviously signed it ;). The evening was wonderful in every way. The food was delicious (yaaasss Fajitas), the music was amazing and the speeches were heartfelt. It’s not often that both mom & dad on both sides give speeches but this time around, everyone wanted to say something. And everything was truly beautifully spoken, to the point where a lot of people in the room were in tears, yes even the bride and groom. One of the moments that stuck out the most to me was when Sarah’s sister, Rachel, said her speech. She isn’t shy and talked about many things like growing up together (they’re only born 13months apart), planning this wedding with her and how she now live sin Edmonton. But when it came time to speak to Sarah directly, well she just burst out into tears. Which made Sarah burst into tears which then prompted her to get up to hug her sister as she couldn’t continue on with her speech. She finished her speech and it was time for Jon’s best man, Phil, to make his way up. He didn’t have as emotional of a speech planned but he did have quite the jokes to tell which brought everyone back up into a laughing mode. After Sarah & Jon’s speech we opted to cut the cake which was interesting to me because not only did they have a regular cake (which they are keeping for their anniversary so they cut a cupcake instead)but they also had a cake made from wheels of cheese for Jon as he can’t have sugar. So they cut a piece for Jon which took all their might and they ended up with like this tiny little piece, which would have to do for feeding each other. We jumped right into all the dances after that and just like that my night was done.

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      Thank you Sarah & Jon for trusting me with capturing this special day for you. You definitely made it an interesting one in the best way possible, even though I threatened to quit multiple times during the portrait time (It’s a joke folks). I hope these photos not only captured the beauty of your day, but the beauty and humour in your relationship. Love you guys xox
      Ottawa wedding Samantha Danis Photography Lonestar Ranch
      The team:
      Hair: Ashley roy at Ashley Roy Designs
      Makeup: Najla Sater
      Wedding and Bridesmaids dresses: Purchased at All That Glitters bridal
      Groom and Groomsmen Attire: Moore’s Formal wear
      Venue: Lonestar ranch and Catering
      Planner: Bree Mak from It’s a Bree’s Wedding & Events
      Officiant: Bill Buckland from All Seasons Weddings
      DJ: Jen at Quality Entertainment
      Photography: Samantha Danis Photography

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