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(A Proposal) On Top of Mount Philo

karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

Charlie and Whitney got engaged Sunday morning on top of Mount Philo. Now, for Whitney, this was a HUGE surprise. For Charlie, though, the event was weeks in the making. He had bought the ring, had talked with Whitney‘s parents and he had just moved himself and all of his belongings up to Vermont from Texas, so to be closer to Whitney (who lives in Louden, NH).
karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

Charlie called me a couple of weeks ago to see if I was available to document this life-changing event and I was thrilled to say yes. The plan was for him to hike the trail with Whitney and reach the top of Mt. Philo about 10 am. I had expected to drive up the access road, but when I arrived, it was closed! I threw my camera over my shoulder and practically ran the whole way to the to the top so I wouldn’t be late- Thankfully, Charlie and Whitney were running behind also and I had a few minutes to catch my breath before they arrived!

karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

It was crowded on the mountaintop and I blended right in– pretending to be just another tourist enjoying the view! I followed liesurely behind as Charlie led Whitney by the hand toward a more private spot. After a couple of minutes, Charlie discretely reached into the pocket of his fleece and then, just like that, he was down on one knee, holding the ring box open and up toward his confused and nervous girlfriend.

karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

And as I pressed my shutter button, I heard Whitney blurt out, “What the F-CK are you doing?!?!” and Charlie laughed.

karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

Whitney was definitely overwhelmed and I think it took her a moment or two to grasp what was happening. Charlie rose back up, slid the ring on Whitney’s ringer and then they embraced. I was about 50 feet away, shooting pictures with a 200mm telephoto lens, and though I couldn’t hear Whitney say much more, I presumed that, through her tears and laughter, her answer was “YES”.

karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

The ring was gorgeous, like something from the 1940’s Hollywood glam period. It had that feel of old estate jewelry, even though Charlie had the ring custom made. It fit perfectly, because Charlie had solicited help from Whitney‘s sister to find out her ring size-Good job, Charlie!

karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

After Whitney‘s shock subsided a bit, I introduced myself and I made some fun pictures of the couple. I loved that Whitney was so comfortable with this, even though her hair was up in a pony tail, and she wasn’t exactly dressed for a “portrait session”. Of course, she looked gorgeous (and happy) in every frame!

karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

We were about to head back down and I laughed as Whitney kept her left arm raised while walking, joking that she was afraid to damage the ring!

karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

I made pictures of the newly engaged couple all along the walk down and Charlie had fun telling Whitney about all of the little things that he had done in recent months and how he was afraid that she would figure out his plan.

karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

The final straw, Charlie told her, was that she had met him in Vermont this weekend and forgot her hiking shoes at home. He insisted that they go shopping for new shoes so that they could go up Philo on Sunday as planned. Whitney laughed, and said that in retrospect, she couldn’t understand why he cared that much about the hike OR that her new shoes then didn’t match her old jacket and that Charlie felt it necessary to buy her a new jacket also! Bonus!

karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

Here’s a video recap of the surprise mountaintop proposal, set against the appropriate song “Marry Me” by Bruno Mars:

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If you’d like to see all of the pictures from this romantic morning on Mt. Philo, then you need to get the password from the newly engaged couple and then follow this link:WHITNEY AND CHARLIE’S GALLERY

karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

And the wedding?? Stay tuned…

A Timeless Wedding

karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

It started off for me like any other crazy Friday, but For ten minutes in the late afternoon, it was as if Time stood Still.

karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

Chris and Genevra were married at Burlington City Hall and aside from a few modern details (like a computer on the desk of the clerk’s window), it could have been 1960, 1970 or any other year in the last 5 decades.

karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

The groom wore his Vt. Air Guard dress uniform. The bride wore a white A-line dress, a (fake) fur collared shawl and her mothers wedding gloves from 30+ years ago. She carried a bouquet of flowers from their garden, ones that magically still bloomed, in spite of a recent frost. (The whole look was very Jacquie Kennedy!)

karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

It is just what the couple wanted- a short-maybe 3 minute-ceremony, consisting of a couple of “I DO‘s… and then sealed with a kiss.

karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

Then they waited for the marriage license..

karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

Did a little celebratory dance…

karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

And they were on their way!

karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

Congratulations, Chris and Genevra! May you live happily ever after!

karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

A Battery Park proposal

karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

Alex, who lives in Burlington and Shantal, who lives in Montreal, are in love.
karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

On This beautiful Fall Thursday evening, Shantal arrived for the weekend from Montreal to visit Alex. At his apartment, she was greeted with a bouquet of flowers, a new dress, and a note telling her that a taxi would pick her up at 5:45 and deliver her to him.
karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

And while Shantal got ready for her date, Alex anxiously sat in Battery park–a ring in his pocket, sweat on his brow, and ME, lurking in the shadows and ready to photograph this HUGE event.
karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer
The late-day sun glowed on the horizon and the waterfront view was spectacular. As with most nights in Burlington, many gathered at this popular spot to watch the sunset, so I didn’t actually look out of place with two cameras draped around my neck.
karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

Now, before moving forward, let me tell how Alex and Shantal come to this point in their story…

Shantal‘s best friend Katia and Alex‘s best friend Max met, got married and they moved to Montreal. For the the longest time, they tried to match up Alex and Shantal but neither of them were interested in meeting the other and starting a long distance relationship. After all, Alex lived in Maryland, and Shantal in Quebec. It would never work! Right?

But, after so much time listening to their friends talk about each other, Alex and Shantal finally relented and took a leap of faith.

First, they started to talk on the phone. And talk. And talk. Day after day and night after night, they continued talking.

Then, after countless phone calls, Alex headed to Montreal to meet Shantal.
karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

It took only a few more visits before it was clear that they wanted to be in each others’ lives forever.
karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

So, what’s a man to do? Alex moved to Vermont to be closer to his girl and to show her that he meant business.
Every weekend, Alex either went to Montreal or Shantal visited him in Burlington.
karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

And so, here we were… Thursday, October 2, 2014, 6:00 pm, at Battery Park:
karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

A bewildered Shantal arrived at he stroke of 6 o’clock, and immediately, a nervous Alex got down on one knee, held up the ring box and asked her to be his bride.
karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

She said YES.
karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

WOW! It all happened so fast (and I was trying so hard to look casual and NOT like a paparazzi) that I almost missed the whole thing!
karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

After a short and sweet portrait session, the sun was gone and Alex and Shantal went on to a celebration dinner at the Blue Cat Bistro and then to phone friends and family to tell them the big news.
karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer
karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

Here’s a nice little video recap of the big proposal, set against a song chosen by the newly engaged couple: “Waiting All My Life” by the Rascal Flatts

_

Congratulations, Alex and Shantal. I hope I get to photograph the big day!!
karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

Ashley and Kate’s wedding

karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

Ashley and Kate were married last month at Camp Common Ground in Starksboro.
karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

The couple hosted a “wedding weekend” at this family camp, where their guests gathered for an old fashioned summer camp experience, slept in cabins (some with multiple sets of bunk beds), ate in the mess hall, and just enjoyed Vermont in all it’s natural glory. All that and then culminating with a fabulous wedding and party? It doesn’t get much better than that!
karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

For Ashley and Kate, the big day started with a β€œlittle” storm and it didn’t let up for hours. But the wet weather didn’t rain on this wedding’s lively and lovely parade. If anything, the rain and mist added a richness of color to the enchanted surroundings.
karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

The “getting ready” part of the day always makes such fun pictures. Ashley and Kate dressed separately with help from their own attendants and even their dog had fancy new duds for the event!
karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

Such a sweet face!
karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

A First Look at each other brought so much emotion, my heart leapt.
karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer
First official Family portrait!
karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

The ceremony, held in the hay barn, was magical and emotional. There were many moist eyes (including Ashley’s) throughout the service, which was officiated by a dear friend and included Kate’s sister singing with her father accompanying on guitar.
karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

This picture just makes me smile…
karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

Along with the pronouncement of marriage came clear skies and an opportunity for cocktails and toasts outside the main hall. The brides’ two dads had everyone both giggling and tearing up.
karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

The big group shot:
karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

The mess hall was transformed into a beautiful wedding venue, including all the lovely little details that make for a memorable celebration. The food, provided by Sarah Hipple of Welcome Home Chef Service, was SCRUMPTIOUS, with a variety of stations including the best fish tacos I have ever had!
karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

It’s not a wedding unless your friends serenade you!
karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

First dance as a newly wedded couple:
karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

Rusty Belle–Absolutely the best wedding band I heard all summer! How can you NOT love a band who uses a washboard and an old coffee can as a symbol…
karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

…and they kept the crowd dancing all night!
karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer
Fireworks and sparklers added the perfect finishing touch to this super fun wedding!
karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

If you haven’t seen enough pictures, this slideshow is one of my most favorites from this season and has great music by Brandi Carlile and SHeDAISY ! So, find a computer (Because it’s in FLASH and not IPAD friendly) and enjoy the recap of Ashley and Kate’s wet and wild wedding day:

_
If you’d like to see all of Ashley and Kate’s wedding pictures, please ask them for the secret password and then click HERE

karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

Sadie and Christy’s wedding

karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

Sadie and Christie were married on a bright August day at Trapp Family Lodge in Stowe, and the hills were indeed alive with the sound of both music- and- wait for itlove!

karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

The couple took the traditional path of getting ready for their wedding separately. Sadie quietly dressed, with just some help from her mom, and Christy had close friends with her to assist with the details.

karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

There were many smiles when the women had their first look at each other in their wedding clothes. And for good reason–they both looked GORGEOUS!

karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

The family portraits were festive and one of my favorite moments was when Sadie and Christy gave grandma smooches…
karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

The wedding ceremony was held in the concert meadow, and Sadie‘s niece and nephew served as flower girl and ring bearer.

karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

With the broad vistas of Nebraska Valley as its backdrop, about 50 friends and family members witnessed the exchange of marriage vows and rings.

karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

And, 15 minutes later, Christy and Sadie were joined in marriage and they sealed this all-important moment with a kiss.
karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

Then came the barrage hugs and congratulations and, of course, a few happy tears.

karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

Onto the cocktail hour, held on the patio outside of the Mozart Room…

karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

…and then inside for a scrumptious dinner.
karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

Dancing as a married couple…
karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

So many lovely details…
karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

And what’s a wedding without a rumba line…
karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

toasting marshmallows on the patio…
karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

a final walk in the garden with twilight sky…
karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

A wonderful night for a moon dance…
karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

Enjoy this (flash) slideshow, looking back at Sadie and Christy’s mountain wedding, with some musical accompaniment from T.J. McCloud and Bonnie Raitt:


If you’d like to see all of Sadie and Christy‘s wedding pictures, just click HERE (but get the password first from the couple!)

karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

Meesh and Jill’s Wedding

karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

“Home, Home on the Grange, where these brides have their FAB Wedding day…”🎡🎢🎡

karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

Meesh and Jill celebrated their wedding weekend with 180 friends and family at the Vermont Grange in Brookfield. They took over the camp (many sleeping in cabins with bunk beds) and had a weekend of laughter and fun, complete with corn hole and camp fires. Of course, it culminated with the Wedding and an awesome reception!

karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

Jill looked gorgeous in her white dress and Meesh equally so in her grey slacks and vest (and the greatest bow tie ever)! Their matching bouquets pulled the whole look together, along with their bridal party’s grey and purple attire. All of the flower arrangements were designed by Jill’s sister and they were really special!

karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

It was a beautiful ceremony, officiated by a close friend, with readings and singing, 180 smiles and, yes, a few (happy) tears.

karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

The reception began with lawn games and appetizers, before moving inside the main hall for dinner and dancing.
karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

Check out this gorgeous cheese board, one of the couple’s wedding gifts !
karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

This was one of those weddings where the children were all so adorable, I couldn’t keep my camera off them…

karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

The dinner was catered by Donnell Collins , the amazing executive chef at Leunigs in Burlington. The food was delicious and plentiful, all served family style. Then came the toasts and lots of laugher.

karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

Instead of wedding cake, the delicious dessert was a selection of A-MA-ZING WHOOPIE PIES provided by TIME OUT FOR WHOOPIE- YUM!
karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

The party was so much fun, and all of the music was played from an IPOD set up to a sound system with hours of Meesh and Jill‘s favorite songs.

karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

Here’s a slideshow looking back at this perfect day on the Grange. Enjoy! (But it is in FLASH, so you’ll need to trade your iPad for a laptop to watch it.)

One last one: Funny Foto Bomb!
karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

If you’d like to see all of Meesh and Jill’s wedding day pictures, just get the password from the couple and then CLICK HERE

Congratulations, Meesh and Jill!!!!

Ashley and Kate’s E session

karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

Ashley and Kate are getting married next Saturday and we just barely squeaked in an Engagement session.
karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

Taking portraits of a couple prior to their wedding is so important for me, because it is often the only time I have to get to know them a little and see how comfortable they are in front of the camera. This couple is so cute and was so much fun to photograph during their E session, I can’t wait to point a lens at them again at their wedding!

karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

I enjoyed seeing how playful Ashley and Kate are with each other. They both have infectious smiles an a great sense of humor!
karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

It is also obvious that they are truly in love and enjoy each other’s company more than anything.

karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

Without further ado… Enjoy this oh-so-romantic slide show, set to Nat King Cole’s L-O-V-E….


If you’d like to see all of Ashley and Kate‘s Engagement portraits, please click HERE (password protected).

Come back next month to see some glorious wedding pictures of Ashley AND Kate!

James and Rachael’s Wedding

karen pike photography vermont wedding photographer

karen pike photography vermont wedding photographer

James and Rachael were married last month at Saint Francis Xavier Church in Winooski and then had a super fun reception at the Whitcomb Barn in Essex.

karen pike photography vermont wedding photographer

The traditional Catholic ceremony included a full mass and it represented both the couple’s love for each other as well as their mutually deep religious connection.πŸ’’

karen pike photography vermont wedding photographer

I love how Rachael looked toward the heavens while being escorted down the aisle by her father.
karen pike photography vermont wedding photographer

James was on the verge of tears when he saw his about-to-be-bride for the first time…

karen pike photography vermont wedding photographer

Presenting Mr. and Mrs….
karen pike photography Vermont wedding photographer

Uh Huh! 😎
karen pike photography vermont wedding photographer

On to the party. What view!
karen pike photography vermont wedding photographer

I’m such a sucker for those personal little details…
karen pike photography vermont wedding photographer

Love this!
karen pike photography vermont wedding photographer

This couple can D-A-N-C-E!
karen pike photography vermont wedding photographer

My favorite of the “message hearts” was the one advising to only ever fight NAKED…πŸ˜™

karen pike photography vermont wedding photographer

SO sweet…πŸ’‘
karen pike photography vermont wedding photographer

Here’s a slideshow looking back at this awesome day. Enjoy! (But it is in FLASH, so you’ll need to trade your iPad for a laptop to watch it.)


If you’d like to see all of Rachael and James’ wedding pictures, please click HERE. You will need to get the password, though, in order to enter this gallery. You can get it from Rachael and James.πŸ“·

karen pike photography vermont wedding photographer

Chris and Christine’s Jay Peak Wedding

karen pike photography vermont wedding photographer

karen pike photography vermont wedding photographer

Chris and Christine or CΒ² (in math terminology), were married last month at the Jay Peak Resort. I had never been to this venue before but I definitely hope I get to go back again soon! The location is awesome and the couple couldn’t have had a more perfect Vermont celebration.

karen pike photography vermont wedding photographer

After some portraits of CΒ² and the bridal party (against some pretty spectacular views), it was off to a bright and beautifully decorated barn for the ceremony. You would have never known that this little gem, tucked away in the woods just off a tree-lined footpath from the clubhouse was only a few yards from the golf course.

karen pike photography vermont wedding photographer

karen pike photography vermont wedding photographer

Such a great moment…
karen pike photography vermont wedding photographer

So Sweet….
karen pike photography vermont wedding photographer

Gotta love bubbles!
karen pike photography vermont wedding photographer

I always say that it’s the details that make a wedding, and this one had it totally nailed down! Everything from the table settings to the flowers to the YUMMY cupcake display was spot on perfect. It was a truly wonderful celebration for this truly wonderful couple!

karen pike photography vermont wedding photographer

Don’t you just love Lβ™₯VE?

karen pike photography vermont wedding photographer

I hope you enjoy the following slideshow of Chris and Christine’s wedding celebration!!


Definitely a candidate for the season’s cutest couple!
karen pike photography vermont wedding photographer

**If you’d like to see all of Chris and Christine‘s wedding pictures, please click HERE. It is password protected, so you must get the secret word from the couple if you want to enter the gallery.

Congratulations, CΒ² !!πŸ’

Meesh and Jill’s E session

karen pike photography vermont wedding photographer

This is a love story:
Girl meets Girl.πŸ‘­
karen pike photography vermont wedding photographer
Girl has a creemee with girl.🍦
karen pike photography vermont wedding photographer

Girl falls in love with Girl. ❀
karen pike photography vermont wedding photographer
Girl gets engaged to girl.πŸ’
karen pike photography vermont wedding photographer
Girls have a way fun engagement portrait session πŸ“· and prepare for the wedding in 2 weeks!!πŸ’’
karen pike photography vermont wedding photographer
No time for small talk. Just enjoy the video slideshow (in FLASH, however, so you can’t watch on your iPad or iPhone :cry: :

Girls make a home with (3) cats! 😸 😼 😻
karen pike photography vermont wedding photographer
The family is on their way to living happily ever after…πŸ’‘ 😸 😼 😻🏑
karen pike photography vermont wedding photographer
Come back next month to see Meesh and Jill’s Wedding pictures!πŸ“·

And maybe in a few years… 🚼???

If you’d like to see all of the pictures from Meesh and Jill’s Engagement session, please click HERE (and get the secret WORD from the couple so you can enter that password-protected gallery!) πŸ˜€