I was so excited when I found out my youngest cousin got engaged! Without hesitation, I booked my flight! The last time my brother and I were with all of our cousins, it was for my uncle’s funeral. The last time was also the first time. That realization stung. I looked at the ONE photo I had of all of us together and knew I had to go so that we could have photos together from a happier occasion. The only down side was that I would only be in Georgia long enough for the wedding.
While I was busy packing the night before my flight, Friday, the LA Kings WON the Stanley Cup for the 2nd time! My heart was racing! I could hardly focus long enough to clean my lenses, pack my bags, and order my cab for the next morning. I slept for maybe 3 hours! I got to the airport just before TSA opened the security gate. I only had my camera bag and a big tote purse for my 19 hour trip!
Luckily, I was able to get a window seat and slept for about 4 hours to ATL. I was nervous about picking up my rental car, meeting my friend for lunch, and driving to Harlem in time for the wedding! Good thing my flight arrived 30 mins earlier than scheduled! Enterprise Rental Car was AMAZING! They had my car ready by the time I walked out to the parking structure! I met my friend, Kerri, from More Than Words Design for a quick lunch (wish we could have spent more time together)! We got so caught up chatting that I lost track of time and had to rush out to get back on the road. I thought I’d just stop somewhere during my 2+ hour drive before getting to the wedding venue to use the restroom and get freshened up with a change of clothes since I didn’t when I stopped for lunch. HA!
I sped the entire way there out of fear that I would be late and I arrived 10 mins before the start time! I ended up changing in my rental car just outside of the wedding! I could see GUESTS from the driver’s seat! I managed to slip my dress on over my undershirt, over my jeans and then slide out of my jeans when I hopped out of my rental. Too bad for me, that my back was toward the guests and I didn’t see my brother walking around my car to catch me just as my jeans fell to my ankles. Thank GOD my dress covered everything. After really quick greeting, I begged him to help me find a restroom. As we walked up to the front door of the bed and breakfast, Red Oak Manor, I could see the bride, Cayla, peeking through the window in the door. She looked very excited to see me and asked if I brought my gear with me! I pleaded with her to talk to me as I went to the bathroom after assuring her that I am not shy. (I mean really can you be that shy after 2 kids?) That’s when she asked if I’d shoot their wedding because something happened with the scheduled photographer! Sheesh! This was anything but a relaxing trip so far!
I got to work right away! I wish there was enough time for the bride and groom to notify those they asked to take pictures that I did bring my gear with me and I was on the job. I had my challenges, but was able to navigate around them….mostly. NOTHING prepared me for my aunt’s brother-in-law with his two large cell phone cameras who was EVERYWHERE. lol
Despite the chaos, despite the challenges, it was a beautiful ceremony celebrating my baby cousin and his new bride!
Naturally, I stayed up all night chatting with my cousins and my aunt until I had to make the 2.5 hour drive back to ATL to catch my flight back home to my boys! I made it through Father’s day lunch, but not much else!
Here are a
few several from my crazy trip to “Jawjuh”!
I’m so grateful that I was able to be there for my baby cousin and his bride.
Sadly, we were missing my cousin Sherry, but thanks to my gorgeous sister-in-love, I have this photo during happier times with my brother and my cousins!