I'm always interested in how people meet and fall in love. What brings two people together? How much does one small decision we make impact another? Life can be a confusing journey but Kathleen and Wesley's story is proof that true love will always find a way!
They were both born and raised in Tucson, Arizona, just 34 days apart. However, they literally grew up on the opposite ends of town, so never even met each other until well after Kathleen left Arizona for college in San Diego. They were introduced their junior year of college through both their little sisters who had become friends while attending the University of Arizona. Kathleen was spoken for at that time but Wesley knew there was something there and understood that patience is a virtue. Eventually Wesley graduated U of A and moved away to Chicago, but every year for Christmas Kathleen and Wesley would both visit home and inevitably meet up in group settings. Finally, while in Tucson for the holiday break in 2013, they were both were unattached. They met up with a group of friends and Wes and Kathleen talked nearly the entire night only with each other and ended up watching Elf until the early hours of the morning. It was after that evening that everything changed, the connection was exciting and clear to both of them - and obvious to everyone around. Even though they now lived on opposite sides of the country (California and Illinois) they texted and called frequently flirting and conspiring when they would be able to see each other again. Wes had been growing tired of the freezing cold city life in Chicago and was looking for an opportunity to relocate, while Kathleen happened to be living in America's finest city which is also closer to his family and many longtime friends, the opportunity was too obvious to deny. As soon as he started looking for a job everything just sort of fell into place and he quickly was offered an incredible job in San Diego in his dream industry and by the first week of March was living in San Diego and they were officially an item. The rest is history, or at least the beginning of it!
I love their engagement story! From Kathleen:
One Friday night over Labor Day weekend in September of 2016, Wesley being true romantic, made a reservation at an amazing restaurant in downtown Carlsbad. On the way down to the restaurant Wesley got a phone call and claimed it was the restaurant calling to ask if they could push our reservation back a half hour because they were running behind. Right then, we just happened to be driving by our neighborhood park that sits overlooking the lagoon, and Wesley quickly pulled off the road and parked. He said "Why don't just hang out here for a few minutes before heading over then", and I was like "What kind of nice restaurant calls ten minutes before a reservation time and asks to push it back?! Screw them!" I was close to saying we should just go somewhere else, but we were already stopped at the beautiful park right on the water and it was just about sunset so it wasn't a crazy idea to just get out and chill for little bit. Wes quickly hopped out the car and started walking over the edge of the park where there is a big set of binoculars visitors can use to look around the lagoon. He literally bee-lined it to the binoculars and started quickly telling a story about how his parents and he had been at the park a few days earlier when they visited and had seen the same kitty we had been spotting around the neighborhood. He peered into the binoculars and excitedly said "Oh my gosh, I see that cat again, I'm not even kidding, look!" And he had me look through the binoculars, and as I looked through, a big tree across the lagoon came into focus that had a huge sign on it that said "Will you Marry Me?" with an image of the monkey iPhone emoji (our ridiculously silly pet names, he's the tree and I'm the monkey.). I turned around from the binoculars as the sun is setting beautifully and Wes is knelt down, pulls the ring box out of his sock and begins talking (words I cannot hear because of the intense state of shock). Then I notice a man approaching us with a large camera lens clicking at us and I say to Wes "There's a man taking pictures of us!" and he replies "I know, it's ok. I hired him". The ring was insanely gorgeous and I didn't' even help him with clues of what I'd like. He did an amazing job creating this special surprise moment as a the beginning of an amazing journey together.
When I first talked with Kathleen and Wesley about their vision for their wedding, I knew it would be a dream to photograph. They wanted a relaxed, fun-loving vibe, highlighting the beauty of the desert landscape at Tanque Verde Guest Ranch and they nailed it!
Congratulations you two and thanks for having me document your day!
Venue: Tanque Verde Guest Ranch
Groomsmen Attire: Friar Tux
DJ/Live Music: Hans Hutchinson
Bakery: Village Bakehouse
Invitations: Katie Barnes Studio
Second Photographer: Stephanie Bloom from In Bloom Images