I first met Paige while photographing Breeda and Joe’s wedding last summer at the Naval Academy Chapel and reception at The Westin Annapolis. When she contacted me about her own wedding in Annapolis, I was thrilled! We had so much fun at Breeda and Joe’s wedding, I knew this event would be just as awesome. And I was right! The day was absolute perfection. I’ll let the bride share their story and advice for new couples in her own words:
How they met:
“Sort of an embarrassing story..Our good friends Breeda Carbone and Billy Draves had tried setting us up for about 6 months before we ever even met. Over the summer of 2012 they convinced me to text him and I did…I only received one reply before radio silence. To be frank I was mortified about the whole thing. When school started up again for our sophomore year, to my surprise Riley was in my class. He came strolling into class late, saw me out of the corner of his eye, laughed, and then took the only seat available which of course was next to me. Immediately after class I went to my academic advisor to change my schedule but apparently they don’t change classes for embarrassed teenage girls. Good thing they didn’t because a few weeks later I got the courage to confront him about the whole thing. After a few library study dates the rest became history. As it turns out, whereas I thought our first meeting was that embarrassing day in class, I had actually met Riley before. I used to stop and talk to Riley and one of my friends everyday the year prior and had no idea who he was at the time. I also found out later that that summer I had texted him, he had already told his mom about me and how he thought I was a really cool girl and he just wanted to be my friend.
How they got engaged:
“Both Riley and I are Naval Officers. While he was in Flight School in Pensacola, FL, I was on a ship in Pearl Harbor, HI. It was difficult for us to see each other and we only had an opportunity to do so every few months. One weekend in March my ship pulled into Port Hueneme, CA, so Riley met me there. We were staying in Santa Barbara for the weekend. We went on this completely gorgeous hike with the end destination being a burned down mansion in Mountains that had a panoramic view of the ocean. Riley had asked a stranger to take our photo. As I reached my arm around him for the picture Riley got squirmish because he thought I felt the ring box tucked into his waistband (I hadn’t). The photographer clearly realized what was going on before I did and captured a series of photos of me being upset with Riley for being rude and not posing for the picture, to utter shock as he got down on his knee, to ugly crying happiness afterwards. The full spectrum of emotions caught in about 15 seconds.
Best and worst things about wedding planning:
“Best: It is exciting to think about and build up the happiest day of your lives and the beginning of the next chapter. Worst – It is daunting the amount of work and planning that goes into it. Luckily Casey Perkins and Kate Burke are wedding experts and basically planned everything for us. At the risk of sounding too basic – We literally could not have done it without them!
Advice for future couples:
“It seems cliche to say “Enjoy your wedding day” but that is important! Your family and friends are all there to celebrate the newlyweds so don’t let them keep you apart! We’ve been to too many weddings where the bride and groom are separated talking to family but what we wanted was to relish in the moment together. We made a point to talk to family during the rehearsal/rehearsal dinner so that the wedding day could be about us and we could jam out on the dance floor, pizza in hand, for some amazing memories. Everyone we’ve talked to about our weddings has amazing things to say about seeing us so happy and in love because we were able to show everyone that side of us.”
The day was filled with so many beautiful moments. One of my favorites was that they read personal vows to each other privately before the ceremony. Thank you, Paige and Riley, for allowing us to be a part of your love story!