Jessica + Patrick {by liz}

WARNING! BIG LONG STORY AHEAD…pretty photos at the end.

I am lucky. Sometimes I don’t feel lucky. Like everyone, I have my days where I feel like the world is out to get me and nothing could possibly even kind of go my way. But luck was on my side when Jessica and Patrick became my clients. They have been so gracious in so many ways. Jessica was so easy going leading up to the wedding. No big requests really, lots of “I trust your judgement” comments, we are happy to feed you, etc. Actually, I don’t think she really had any requests or demands at all!

Then we get to the wedding day. Same thing! Totally relaxed, happy, everything is great, life is good, Patrick is an absolute gem, no crazy over the top photo schedule…they just want a few shots in walking distance of the Missouri History Museum where they are having both their ceremony and reception. So I head over there a couple of days prior and find a beautiful little patch of wild grass on the golf course in which the sun will be peaking through from behind them causing a nice warm flare. Perfect for photos. Or so I thought.

I (as I often do) ask the couple and the wedding party to step just like a foot back into the grasses so that it looks like they are in the middle of a field when really it is a small patch of grass and they are only a foot in. I hop in, flatten a few stalks and show them where I want them. And they willingly oblige and start grouping themselves into the grass. And then it happens. I hear someone say “Um, there are some bees in here.” And then I hear multiple people begin to shriek and arms begin to flail. It happened so fast. Bridesmaids and groomsmen scatter…arms waving, high heels flying, running for their lives. I quickly find I am too close as well and I follow.

Have you ever seen those bees that live in the ground? It just looks like a little hole in the ground. There was one at our campsite one time. Well, it seems as if one of the girls heels invaded the bees home. I say this because one of the pairs of heels that were kicked off had about 20 bees sitting on the heel of it.

So we get away from the bees and access the situation. Just about every bridesmaid got stung. One at least 8 times. One on her lip. The guys were overall more fortunate…well covered in their tuxedos. Jessica and Patrick are sting free. Without having taken one photo, the wedding party heads back in to the museum to nurse their wounds and apply a variety of hydrocortisone and sting ointments. Oh do I feel horrible. But Jessica and Patrick stay calm and we proceed to find a new impromptu spot for a few portraits of the two of them. I promise not to ask them to get into any wild grasses. We didn’t have much time to work with before the bee fiasco, but now we have even less. They laugh it off, try to make me feel better, they do not even kind of let it ruin their wedding day! And they take some stellar portraits. When you see them you will think that everything is right in the world.

About 5 minutes later, one of the groomsmen comes back out with a couple of drinks for them. We ask how everyone is doing and I sheepishly ask if he will see if there is even a remote possibility the wedding party feels ok enough to come out for 5 quick minutes of photos. So we have SOMETHING. Mind you this is all happening before the ceremony, so guests will start arriving at any minute. My hopes are low. There were over 20 bee stings amongst the group. Those things hurt like hell.

Minutes later…the wedding party (the best wedding party of all time I might add!) comes filing back out of the Missouri History Museum. I am amazed and forever grateful.

I started off this post by saying I was lucky. It probably doesn’t sound like luck was on my side after that story! But if something like this was ever going to happen, I was so lucky to have it happen to this amazing couple and wedding party. Sorry guys but it’s true! I don’t know many people that would have handled it so gracefully and kept their spirits high. I have had clients in tears over a small, light dirt stain on the bottom hem of their dress. And none of you shed a tear or spoke a mean word through a couple dozen bee stings. And for that, I thank you. From the bottom of my heart.

Ok, now that I’m done writing my book (which I swear I will actually do one day with all of these stories!), let’s look at some photos shall we?! Enjoy!

Starting with some adorable Kate Spade flats and some fabulous ruffles.

Using reflections doubles the amount of shiny.

Time for a little Patrick!

Patrick is this handsome (and very tall!) man with a blend of boyish, almost giddy charm. This shows his more manly side. Giddiness to come soon…

Final touch…the veil. And it is perfect. Just like Jessica.

The left: Bow chica bow wow! I promise not to get any nudity in my shots. And I didn’t. I swear! I just thought this little off the shoulder thing was totally cute. The right: moment with mom and sis. I love how she is holding onto her sister here.

Awwww….

So very cinderella…but better. Because it’s real life!

Patrick in place and ready to see Jessica! Giving her a call to have her come on up…

All smiles.

See?! Giddy boy-ish charm! Seriously, how cute is he and how sweet is that reaction to his soon to be bride? I mean really people.

And a few portraits! This was our spur of the moment make-shift photo location when the spot we were headed for was in use. And I honestly like it WAY better than what we were planning to do. It’s that whole when you get lemons make lemonade thing. Which I tend to think is self help guru mumble jumble. Sometimes it really works!

Between that last photo and this next photo was the infamous bee fiasco. But do you see any note of unhappiness, anxiety or worry in these two? I dare you to find it! Also an impromptu new spot post bee grass armageddon…lot’s of thinking on my feet this time around. I am generally a girl with a plan!

Ribbon flutter in the breeze.

Beautiful floral designs by Thorn Studio.

So beautiful and relaxed with each other.

The most awesome wedding party. Ever.

The bee story being relayed…let’s just call it an educated guess.

Patrick as Jessica comes down the aisle.

Love how her dad is looking at her.

The Missouri History Museum is such a cool venue.

Mr and Mrs!

This is what I call a good hug. A good hug should be all engulfing.

These next couple are some of my faves of the day. I don’t usually purposely break rules. In this case someone had pointed me back to this area before the wedding to find the restroom. So I really didn’t know we weren’t supposed to be there. However, there was a security guard that was kind enough to let us get just a few quick shots since we were already there. And I love them.

These placecards and the whole placecard table by Charming Owl…there are no words. I can’t begin to imagine the time and effort that went into it with the beautiful graphics and wood carving. Jessica and Patrick like to travel and centered their wedding around their worldly wonderings. The Missouri History Museum with Lindbergh’s Spirit of St. Louis Plane to their tables names for places they have traveled together, to the meet me in St. Louis guestbook suitcase postcards. It was awesome.

Another predictably fabulous Cakery Bakery creation.

The toasts started off funny…

And then got a little teary…but all were heartfelt.

Jessica and Patrick made the rounds talking to guests. A regular comedy duo!

Um…I don’t have a caption for this one. Think what you will…

Patrick I don’t think that is an appropriate conversation in mixed company. :) Hee!

Let’s dance!

Congratulations Jessica and Patrick! Thank you for….well, everything really. I wish you the very best!

Ceremony and reception: Missouri History Museum
Caterer: Butler’s Pantry
Flowers: Thorn Studio
Cake: The Cakery
Band: BOOM
Place card table: Charming Owl
Officiant: Rev. Jeff Groene
Hair & Makeup: Salon and Spa at the Chase
Ceremony Music: Serenade Strings

L Photographie St. Louis Wedding Photographers Liz Sloan and Kate Hayes

Ryan posted the following on September 19, 2011 at 1:26 pm.

Wow! What a story and amazing photos to go with it.
Came very close to be in the same situation a few weeks ago when a groomsmen stepped on a downed tree and activated a swarm of wasps. Got lucky … this time.

Karin posted the following on September 19, 2011 at 4:27 pm.

LIZ!!! I have had the exact same thing happen with the bees at Forest Park in the tall grasses!!! Mine luckily was just an engagement session, but it was the same scenario. bees in the ground come swarming up and stung our couple 11 times!! I’m so sorry this happened to your group as I know how miserable you must have felt. What troopers!!


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