Peoria Zoo, Peoria, IL: Jason & Kathleen: June 10, 2017

I’ll never forget the first day I met Kathleen.  She renewed my belief in bridal shows:)  As I was standing at my booth, this beautiful lady and her daughter who I lovingly called Aly Raisman (because she looked like her!)- walked up, asked if I was available June 10, and when I said yes, she said- ‘let me call my fiancee, but we’re going to book you.’  And just like that- in 5 minutes, she became a KKP bride- and I met a friend.

As I got to know Kathleen more and more- I could NOT wait for this wedding.  Kathleen is sweet, giving, and so full of love of her friends and family.  I knew her wedding day would be filled with that love- but I wasn’t even prepared for all of the emotion that went into that day:)  SO much she’d poured into planning for others this day- it was my honor to be there to capture it!

The day started with something I’ll never forget.  Kathleen gathered her family who was with her in the morning getting ready- as well as the hair and makeup stylists- and made them sit down for a daily devotion.  She read from my personal favorite devotional as well- Jesus Calling.  The devotion for June 10 was nothing short of incredible.  It was a devotion surrounding how ‘the planning is done…now enjoy it.’  You can read it below in the pictures- but the message.  Wow.  There is NO doubt that God has a plan, and He had a plan for them!

The ceremony was beautiful and filled with love and if I may say- the most talented vocalist I’ve heard at a wedding:)  She was amazing!

Following the ceremony- we headed to Donovan Park for photos.  It was WINDY- but beautiful.  My FAVORITE picture was when I asked Jason’s siblings to ‘act like Jason’ in a photo- and without hesitation- the three of them did the EXACT SAME THING. Some horrific dance move- and it was hilarious!!!  SO funny!

Then…that’s when an idea came to her that became one of my favorite places ever to shoot wedding photos.  Lou’s Drive In is where Kathleen’s dad always took them for root beer floats. Even I teared up as I was shooting the pictures of Kathleen and her sister.  🙂  I love when we can go to a location that MEANS something.  And it was amazing.

This was my first reception at the zoo and it was phenomenal!  We got to feed the giraffes!!!!  It was amazing!  It was an absolutely gorgeous night out and everyone was having an amazing time dancing, visiting, playing bags, and just enjoying the zoo.

Kathleen had a huge surprise for Jason up her sleeve.  Jason *and his family* are HUGE Iowa fans.  Kathleen, not so much:)  After the first dance, the DJ announced that she decided to give a little and have the Iowa fight song played.  As Jason happily clapped- out of the back came HERKY the mascot.  Jason was SO excited- maybe only outdone by his brother!  Herky was awesome.  He visited with guests, danced a bit, played bags with the kids- he was awesome!  It was SUCH an amazing surprise:)

Kathleen and Jason- I’m so incredibly happy for you.  Your wedding day was every bit as gorgeous as all the others- but it was also incredibly special.  I have no doubts you two will live a long, happy life together!

Much love to both of you:)

Kara