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Summer Wedding at Log House Gardens at Willow Lake | Keizer, Oregon


Mariah and Carlos

A Wedding Day Full of Surprises


I was so excited to be the Portland wedding photographer that Mariah and Carlos choose for their summer wedding at Log House Gardens at Willow Lake.

I first met Mariah and Carlos when they entered to win the "Spread the Love Wedding Giveaway", while they weren't the winners, I was still super touched by their entry.

Mariah's words were so thoughtful, read what she said about their struggles with COVID and planning a wedding: "My fiance and I have been working like crazy to rebuild after covid. Shortly after 2020 began, Carlos, got diagnosed with an autoimmune disease that caused even more anxiety and frustration that 2020 already had in store for us. I ended up having to get two jobs trying supplement income from my management position with Regal after we all shut down and still be on track for our wedding. We're both super grateful and humble for the opportunities we have but definitely could use more help to get the dream wedding we both think the other deserves."

In Mariah's words, this is how they met:

"We were actually working together and I was his manager. We hid our feelings for each other and it was so awkward working together knowing that we were secretly in love. We couldn't tell anybody until I got transferred to another movie theatre. Than we were finally able to tell all of our friends at work and they were all so excited, especially when we announced our engagement!"

Their proposal story is just as sweet.

"I was actually already crying from a conversation we were having about our lives and our future and how happy I was to have found him and how grateful I was that he loved me. He said that he had to put on some socks and then pulled out a ring box. He made me start crying even more because I knew what was coming and he asked me to marry him. I was so busy crying I forgot to say yes, but obviously it was perfect and he is perfect and it was a yes!"

Their wedding day was a hot one, coming in at 94 degrees! But luckily Log House Gardens at Willow Lake gets a great breeze, we were all really thankful for that.

When I entered the bride's getting ready room, her bridesmaids were sitting on the floor working on filling little cups with confetti for the ceremony. When I looked closer, they were actually little hearts that had been hand punched out of live leaves from Carlos's Mom's yard. What a great idea! Not only does it have such a beautiful natural look, but it's also eco friendly.

After the ceremony, as soon as they both sat down, they took their rings off and started looking inside them. It turns out, they had each other's wedding rings engraved and they didn't get to know what is said until that moment! Mariah's ring was engraved with "You are my Sanctuary", from a special song to them "Sanctuary" by Joji, which was also their first dance song. Carlos's wedding ring said "I'm a hold your hand now", something Mariah said to him on their first date.

I have to say Carlos gets credit for the coolest, sweetest, best surprise for a Mother Son Wedding dance. The music started, Carlos walked with his Mother to the dance floor and they started dancing, so far pretty normal. Then all of the sudden the music faded to a soft volume and Carlos's voice came on. He began sharing special memories that he has had with his Mom. You could see she was totally surprised. As the song continued on, the music would fad in and out along with more stories and memories of him and Mom. Needless to say Mom, and many of the guests couldn't help but shed a tear. I have no idea how he came up with this, but what an incredibly special thing it was.

After their wedding day Mariah left this incredible touching review on my Wedding Wire profile: "Such a wonderful human that really worked with us and met all of our needs! She went above and beyond every second of the wedding and I absolutely enjoyed getting to know her! She helped us plan so much and even kept in touch with our other vendors to make sure everything was going to go off without a hitch! An absolute professional and hard working person that I am so glad to have met!"

Vendors

Venue - Log House Gardens at Willow Lake

Bride's Wedding Dress & Shoes - David's Bridal / Dress Designer Melissa Sweet

Make-up and Hair - Bonnie and Molly's Lash Lounge

Wedding Rings & Engraving - Kay Jewelers

Bride and Bridesmaids Wedding Day Jewelry - Claire's

Groom & Groomsmen's Attire - Khols

DJ - Only the Best Sound

Officiant - The Wedding Judge

Cater - Elegant Catering

Florist - Roth's

Bartender - Just Us Girls

Cake - Roth's

Security - Creative Security

Wedding Party Gifts - Bath and Body Works


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