Three years ago my friends Amanda, Laura, and I took a day trip together to Lawrence, Kansas, as a last hurrah together before I moved to Japan a few weeks later. On the drive down, Amanda told us the entertaining story of her finally plucking up the courage to ask out one of her coworkers. By the way she spoke of this guy, I could tell he was someone special (plus he dressed up as Commander Riker for Halloween and sat all weird in a chair, so duh); and, sure enough, on June 5th, 2016, they got married at the Simpson House in Kansas City!
Amanda and I have been friends since 7th grade. In high school, when I got interested in photography, we’d go down to Shawnee Mission Park for photoshoots.
It meant a lot to be able to take her wedding pictures. It was wonderful to be there every step of the way, from her getting ready, to doing their couple portraits at the Nelson, where we’d done our own photoshoots years before, to photographing the ceremony itself, where, of course, I had to take pictures while crying. Ugh. Photographing friends’ weddings. 😉 The best part was that it was like slipping into an old routine. We knew how we both worked and how to take pictures together, and I’ve never felt so comfortable photographing a wedding.
The wedding was held at the Simpson House, a beautiful old Kansas City house:
We started the day at Amanda’s sister-in-law’s house, a few blocks away from the Simpson House. While she did her hair and makeup we watched Pam and Jim’s wedding on the Office and practiced crying.
Earlier I’d asked Amanda and Sam if they wanted a first look photo, to which Sam replied, “I just found out that was a thing like yesterday, so no,” and so of course when he showed up Bea (Amanda’s college roommate and the wedding officiant) and I had to do a first look photo regardless. Thanks for being a good sport guys, haha!
Next were portraits! I absolutely love the Nelson and the giant shuttlecocks on the lawn.
The ceremony was wonderful! Tears were shed, laughter was shared, and Bea read a beautiful book (“I Like You” by Sandol Stoddard Warburg) that illustrated Amanda and Sam’s relationship wonderfully. (And I was thrilled by the lighting and absolutely thankful that everyone was in the shade!)
The reception was simple and beautiful, and it was wonderful to be able to catch up with everyone. Amanda’s brother Chris currently lives in South Korea, so it was especially interesting to talk about our experiences, the cultural differences we’ve faced, and the similarities and differences between Japan and South Korea.
My favourite part of the whole wedding, besides seeing two cool, beautiful people get hitched? Getting to hang out with my best friends again! Love you guys, and I wish all the happiness in the world to you and Sam, Amanda!
(In case Amanda looks too poised in all these pictures, I need to show you why we’ve been friends for so long):