I've thought long and hard about what I want to say about this intimate wedding on Flathead Lake and I still don't have it down. So I'll just go for it.
I met Jed and Taryn through Taryn's older sister Stacey last year. Stacey and I had met in Stats class during undergrad and bonded over a tough subject and a very pregnant, very hard to understand professor. We became fast friends, but as is often the case, life happened and we drifted apart after college. She stayed in Washington and I came back to Montana. Thank God for social media though. We were able to keep up with each other from afar and when her little sister, who was in college at Montana State University, got engaged, Stacey connected Taryn and me.
When I met with Taryn and Jed initially, I learned they were high school sweethearts who had made it through a move and college together. They were sweet and down to earth and I was so excited to be working with them. In the beginning, they were planning a bigger, more traditional wedding; however, they ended up changing courses mid-stream to go with a totally stripped down intimate ceremony at Jed's family's cabin on Flathead Lake. With something like 20 of their closest family members.
Now guys, I love details and fanfare as much as the next girl, but if you take anything from this post, let it be this: these intimate ceremonies and elopements are where my heart is. I think this stems from spending the first year of my legal career divorcing people: I realized quickly that all the money and show in the world means nothing without heart and commitment as the foundation for the marriage. I've seen how hard life can get - how much kids, financial stress, and long hours at work can impact a marriage. With that in mind, I've fallen head over heels for these ceremonies that are simply about two people's commitment to each other. Nothing more.
Jed and Taryn have been such a beautiful example of that commitment: what I have seen over my time with the two of them is that they are truly each other's best friend. Their wedding was an extension of that. I saw how important their families are to them, but just as importantly, that their day was simply about their desire to commit their lives to one another.
These two chose a simple dock and the backdrop of the lake for their ceremony location. No frills, just the simple, striking beauty of Flathead Lake. They wrote their own vows and I'd be lying if I tried to tell you I didn't shed a tear during Jed's TWO PAGE POEM he wrote for his vows. Guys. Is this even real life?
It is real life and it was perfect. After their simple, heartfelt ceremony and a few family photos, Taryn, Jed, and I set off on a mini adventure that included tree houses, log piles, and rocky lake shores. Fortunately, Taryn was well-equipped: she wore robbin's egg-colored Tom's! These two were so good-natured about exploring the property to find some great spots for photos and despite the harsh summer afternoon light, I love love LOVE these photos because of the two they reflect. Jed and Taryn, it was truly an honor to be there for your day. And Stacey, it was so good to reconnect with you, my friend, and I'll forever be thankful that you connected me with your sweet little sister!
Scroll through for some highlights from this adventurous, intimate wedding.