Hey friends, happy Tuesday!! Hopefully your week has been just as productive as mine and has been filled with gorgeous sunshine (yay for summer!).
Last week, I hung out with Joyce and Matt at Rocky Mountain National Park in Estes Park, Colorado. I was in town for an elopement, so they drove up from Denver so that we could shoot their anniversary session the day prior! Guys, I just have to say that they are one of the sweetest, most encouraging, down-to-earth couples.
Get this – the Schlaugers met on Facebook! They had a bunch of mutual friends through the college Joyce was attending at the time, and she actually mistook Matt for a guy she had a class with and had a minor crush on! Funny, am I right?! Joyce then told me that “after our first date I learned he moved from New Mexico to Colorado to start a church with some buddies. I was immediately drawn to his passion for Christ (and he was also super cute) and we started dating very shortly after.” Friends, they really do have such a deep passion for Christ. It’s so apparent in how they interact with each other, they way that they talk and so much more. Hearing their story and testament truly was so moving and near and dear to my heart.
Joyce went on to tell me all about how Matt proposed to her on Pearl St. in Boulder, Colorado. She said when he proposed it was in the evening and that along the street their loved ones were holding signs saying “remember when [important milestone in their relationship]”. She said that “He took the time to express what about that moment meant so much to him as well as what he found he loved about me in those moments, how they drew us closer. He even made sure my best friend, Katie, was there (she was attending college in Wyoming at the time). The very last sign said “remember when you said yes?” And he got on one knee and proposed. It was magic (the cups of glitter thrown at us and the silly string sprayed on us after I said yes helped with that part). Afterwards Matt, some close friends, and myself went to this restaurant we went to often and celebrate with carne asada fries and horchata! We visited Pearl Street right before our wedding and, I kid you not, there was still glitter in the cracks of the street way where he proposed!” Doesn’t their proposal sound like one out of a movie? I can only imagine how special of a moment it was for the two of them and their loved ones that were surrounding them.
Matt and Joyce got married in Denver, Colorado on August 21st of 2014 at the City Park Pavillion. Their wedding was a garden picnic theme, so they decorated the place with picnic baskets and used picnic blankets for their ceremony! Joyce’s Mom made all of their food, ranging from finger sandwiches to a full blown self-serve popcorn bar! Their reception was filled with streamers, teacups, roses and baby’s breath.
Do you want to know their favorite part of marriage? It’s being able to watch each other grow, change and pursue their passions together. They said that they feel it’s so special to grow and change together, to influence one another for the better. They strive to do their very best to serve Christ and they so love knowing that one another is cheering and supporting each other through the process. I’m telling you, being around Joyce and Matt was such a beautiful thing. They asked me to join them for dinner after their session (and even bought my burger!). It was incredible to be able to sit down with two people that I had just met, but be able to connect on so many levels. We talked about ministry, marriage, faith, family difficulties and so much more. If Matt (my hubby) and I lived near them, I have no doubt we would be close friends with the two of them.
Their advice to another couple? Pray for one another without ceasing. Be kind to each other. Show excitement and interest in each other’s passions and laugh so, so much together. I think we can all learn something from this – it’s so important to be present in our marriages. It’s so important to have a Christ centered marriage. Yeah, it’s tough work but the joys far out way the difficult times. Joyce said that her most memorable part of their marriage so far was her 22nd birthday. She said “Matt and I had driven for two days to get me to Virginia for a 3 month long internship. We crashed at a friend’s place at 2am on my birthday, and slept until 8. The entire next day we helped this friend and her husband move from one apartment to the next and then in the evening they took us out for ramen (my first time ever eating this) to say thank you and celebrate my birthday. This was actually my favorite birthday because I believe matt and I are at our best when we challenge each other, work hard, and celebrate life together. I was leaving my love for three months to pursue my passion for pro-life advocacy but he was there to support me the entire way, and I there to support him as he went through the rigorous testing to become an Aurora police officer. That day felt like magic even though I was heartbroken he would be leaving me for the next three months. We had each other’s backs through the entire time.”
Friends, I dare you. Try and get through their entire session without smiling. Without sensing their joy and love for one another and for Christ. My bet? You won’t make it past the first image.
Florals: Leah Jaramillo