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Rockefeller Center Proposal and a Hudson Valley Wedding at the New York Country Club

Shannon and Mier’s engagement at Rockefeller Center was like a scene out of your favorite romance movie, complete with a surprise engagement party, and capped off with a week-long cruise! If you thought that couldn’t get any better, wait until you see their photos from their Hudson Valley wedding at the New York Country Club in New Hempstead, NY. White Poppy Weddings captured every detail perfectly and you can see that Shannon and Mier’s day was full of love and laughter. But first, we got a chance to interview the lovely bride, Shannon, and she tells us more about their beautiful love story and shares some REALLY GREAT advice to engaged couples as well.

 

How did you meet?

 

We were introduced through our mutual friend, Nicole. Mier was friends with her in high school and she became my suite mate in college. Every summer I would go to her house on Long Island to celebrate her birthday and it was always a good mix of high school and college friends getting together. I would only see him once a year at her party and it wasn’t until the summer of 2013, which was right after college, that we decided to take a chance and go on our first date together. After that, I found myself traveling to Long Island quite often.

 

What was your proposal like?

 

We had booked a cruise to leave out of Miami on February 12th which also happened to be my birthday. We were flying out early the day before so on the 10th Mier had organized a dinner with our parents to celebrate my birthday. I’m a huge planner so I wanted to set up the whole thing but he insisted on making the location a surprise and the only reason I agreed was that he kept telling me that I shouldn’t be the one planning my birthday. How could I argue with that one?

 

We woke up that morning and he wanted to go into the City for the day which was super spur of the moment because I was under the assumption that he was going into work because it was a Friday. I had also tried convincing him earlier in the week to take the day off but he said he couldn’t, so you could imagine my excitement when he told me he wasn’t going in to work.

 

Rockefeller Center Proposal

Photo from Shannon’s personal collection

We got up and I was trying to find a nice outfit to wear because I am now assuming that my surprise birthday dinner is in the city. One thing leads to another and my getting ready process took a little longer than anticipated so we missed our first train. Oops! He had mentioned that he wanted to go to The Top of the Rock and ice skating at Rockefeller Center but since we missed our first train, we’d only go ice skating because we had tickets already for open skating for a specific time. I was extremely fine with that because ice skating in the City was one of my bucket list items that I’ve always wanted to do. We get into the city and check in at the rink. I remember getting on the ice and feeling so excited to finally be able to see a different perspective of Rockefeller Center.

About 5 minutes before the session ended, Mier says that he’d like to take a picture in front of the main statue. We’re the last people on the ice and he asks an employee if they would mind taking a photo. He hands her my phone and as we’re skating over to the statue I hear “Bittersweet Symphony” by The Verve start playing. Everyone that knows me knows that is my all-time favorite song so I don’t even see a ring yet but I know it’s coming because as I am listening to “Bittersweet Symphony.” I see the biggest smile on his face with tears in his eyes. Mier gets down on one knee and asks me to marry him in the most perfect way. Everyone from above was cheering for us and I remember being overwhelmed with such joy and happiness. It’s moment in time which I get to relive frequently because the girl that was supposed to take our picture captured that exact moment on video.

 

Afterwards, we sit down at the ice skating rinks bar and got treated to a glass of champagne. At this point, I completely forgot about my birthday dinner but Mier tells me that he actually booked a reservation closer to our house in Hastings. We finish our champagne and hop on the train to head back. I’m on cloud 9 and very excited to see our parents and show them my new shiny piece of jewelry. He said that we just needed to stop at the house really quick because he forgot a card that he wanted to bring to the restaurant.

 

We get inside and are greeted with a big “SURPRISEEEE!” Our family and friends came running towards us with open arms and already being an emotional wreck, I start crying once again.

 

The rest of the night was spent celebrating with all of our loved ones and the next morning we flew off to Miami to spend the week cruising tropical islands as a newly engaged couple. It could not have been more perfect.

 

Did you have a wedding theme or vibe you were going for?

 

When planning my wedding I always had the vibe of classy and elegant in the back of my mind. I didn’t want extremely bold colors but rather more neutrals with a pop of lighter blue hints. The blue was incorporated in the bridal party and with our floral arrangements. The first element that I knew we had to have were hydrangeas. They are my absolute favorite flower so I knew that blue needed to be the focus point. Pinterest did a great job at helping find ideas.

 

Why did you choose the Hudson Valley for your wedding?

 

We chose the Hudson Valley for our wedding because my family is from upstate and his family is from Long Island so we thought that it would be a good idea to pick an area that was close to being between our two homes.

 

What was the most memorable moment from your wedding day?

 

There was a moment in the middle of the reception when I sat down while everyone else was on the dance floor. I will never forget that moment because I was overcome with such happiness seeing all of our family and friends having the best time celebrating our marriage. I think it’s very important for couples to take in those moments on their wedding day because it allows you to step back and truly feel all of the love that is surrounding you on your wedding.

 

Do you have any advice for engaged couples about wedding planning?

 

Find your venue as soon as possible. Some people think it’s crazy to start looking right after you get engaged but I have to disagree. While it’s nice to enjoy the time being newly engaged, it’s also important to start looking for your dream location to get married. It could take some time to find that perfect place and if you have a specific day or month in mind, that’s even more of a reason to start the hunt early so you can get the date you want. Schedule those appointments!

 

Also, I cannot stress this enough….. make sure you love your vendors and know who you’re working with! These are the people that you will communicate with frequently which is why it’s super important to feel comfortable with your vendors. There’s a lot of trust that you will need to give them because these are the people who are supposed to make your dream wedding become a reality. Luckily, could not be happier with the vendors that we chose. Everyone was phenomenal and we will be forever grateful for them.

 

Vendors:

 

Venue: New York Country Club – New Hempstead, NY

 

Photography: White Poppy Weddings – Newburgh, NY

 

DJ and Videography: Music Speaks Volumes – Wappingers Falls, NY

 

Hair and Makeup: Bella Trucco – Marlboro, NY

 

Flowers: Bassett Flowers – New City, New York

 

Photo credit: White Poppy Weddings
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Cold Spring engagement photos Lin Pernille Photography

Marathon & Ice Cream-Themed Hudson Valley Engagement Shoot in Cold Spring

What do you do when you’re a couple who loves the outdoors, running marathons, and ice cream? You incorporate that into your engagement photos, of course! Lucy and Phil, who are planning their Hudson Valley wedding this December at The Garrison, had their engagement photos taken in the cute historic village of Cold Spring.
 
RELATED: HUDSON VALLEY WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHERS SHARE 6 REASONS WHY YOU NEED ENGAGEMENT PHOTOS
 

“It was such a delight to photograph Lucy & Phil’s engagement photos… The two of them made each other laugh and smile the entire shoot and it’s clear to me that they’re going to have a marriage filled with lots of laughter and happiness,” says their photographer, Lin Pernille Kristensen, owner of Lin Pernille Photography. Both Lucy & Phil are avid hikers, runners, and bikers and knew they wanted their wedding to be located in the Hudson Valley, surrounded by mountains and nature. We chose to take their engagement photos near their venue The Garrison in an adorable village on the Hudson River – Cold Spring, NY. Coming from a military family, Phil also thought it was awesome that US Military Academy at West Point was located right across the river! After exploring the town and getting an ice cream cone at Moo Moo’s Creamery, they finished up the shoot with a jog along the trail, sporting their Chicago Marathon t-shirts.”
 
RELATED: 5 TIPS YOU NEED TO KNOW FOR AWESOME ENGAGEMENT PHOTOS
 

Engagement photos are the perfect way to incorporate your passions into a fun and memorable shoot. Check out these photos for inspiration that’ll surely put a smile on your face.
 

Photo Credit: Lin Pernille Photography
 

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Crystal Stewart Photo Untermeyer Park Yonkers

Gorgeous Garden Engagement at Untermeyer Gardens in Yonkers

Natalie and Alek met in college where they were both studying biology and discovered they shared a fierce passion for public health. “We met at college in Organic Chemistry lab,” says Alek. “We were partners. I was a senior she was a sophomore. I always thought she was hot but she didn’t give me the time of day. It took a while.”

 

They let their relationship naturally fall into place. Alek says, “Well we really let things fall into place from the beginning. It felt so natural, we were just really attracted to each other. We met trying to attain the same biology degree so we really respect each other’s dedication to our respective fields and enjoy having deep conversations about that and life.”

 

Alek knew Nat was the one when she told him the story of why she wouldn’t talk to him at first. He says, “Months later, she told me the only reason she never gave me the time of day was because she was in a relationship, but she was really into me all that time in the lab. At that point I knew I could respect her. But I knew I loved her when I wrote out our first Valentine’s Day card. Somehow those words explained exactly how I felt to her and to myself.”

 

Their photo shoot, according to photographer Crystal Stewart, of Crystal Stewart Photo, was at Nat’s favorite place, Untermeyer Gardens. “Her favorite place,” says Stewart, “was this gorgeous private garden that is normally sprawling with vibrant color. This winter was brutal in the northeast, so upon arrival, we noticed that there was not even one pop of color. Initially very sad, the couple decided to just trust me and we really got some gorgeous images. Throughout the session, this couple was playful, joked around, dotted over one another and really showed how much they understood each other.”

 

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Faraway Farm Alpacas Yorktown Heights engagement photos

Alpaca Farm Engagement Session in Yorktown Heights

There is no shortage of amazing spots in the Hudson Valley perfect for your engagement session. However, Julia and Theo really wanted a location that was unique and different, yet matched something that they were both passionate about. “While throwing around ideas for their engagement session”, says Kathleen, owner of Parenthesis Photography, “Julia mentioned that she and Theo really loved animals, especially alpacas. After doing a little research I came across Faraway Farm Alpacas in Yorktown Heights, which looked amazing.”
 

Anytime you can incorporate animals into your photos, it just takes them to a whole new level. You never know what they’re going to do and they just instantly make you feel comfortable and happy. Kathleen says, “The alpacas were a little shy at first, but eventually warmed up after we gave them some treats.” Food works every time!.
 

While the engagement session was great, sometimes the best parts are in the quiet moments. “The end of their shoot was my favorite part though,” says Kathleen. “We stood by the fence near the edge of the woods, and I asked Julia and Theo to tell me about how they’d met and got engaged. We spent about ten minutes just talking about their relationship and taking photos until the sun started to go down.”
 

How many of you would love to have these alpacas in your engagement photos? Are you thinking of doing engagement photos in a non-traditional location? Have you taken engagement photos at a unique location? We’d love to see!
 

Featured photo credit and credit to all below: Parenthesis Photography

 

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The Unusual Side Effect Of Your Proposal And How To Fix It

Did you suffer from “Engagement Hearing Loss” when you were proposed to? Not sure what that is? Well, let me tell you my story and see if you can relate…
 

Almost seven years ago, my husband and I got engaged. We were on vacation in Walt Disney World (our home away from home) and were about to get our picture taken in front of Cinderella Castle in the Magic Kingdom. We patiently waited in line until it was our turn. We put our bags down, assumed the position, the PhotoPass Photographer took our photo and we were off…or so I thought.
 

As we were leaving, the photographer asked if we could take one more photo, so we put our bags down again and got back into position, only this time, my soon-to-be-fiancé/husband, angled me towards him. I remember saying “What are you doing?” as he started talking, and after about the third word I knew EXACTLY what he was doing!
 

“Oh my gosh…he’s proposing!!!” I thought, and then everything went silent. No sound at all! I could see his mouth moving, so I KNOW he was talking, but I had NO IDEA what was coming out of his mouth. I could see him on one knee, see him opening the ring box, I remember immediately going into an ugly cry and almost instinctively grabbing the ring but then pulling back. I couldn’t hear anything because I was overcome with such shock and surprise. It was the most intense surprise and wave of emotion I’ve ever experienced.
 

RELATED: THE NUMBER ONE TRUTH THAT CAN RUIN YOUR PROPOSAL

 

A few seconds later, I heard some older gentleman in line behind us yell out “Did she say ‘yes’?” and then everything snapped back. “Oh, my gosh!” I thought again, “There are people waiting, let’s grab our stuff and let those poor folks get their pictures.” The rest of the day, I kept asking him over and over what he said, but it was pointless. I wasn’t absorbing anything. I’ve never been so happily surprised in all my life!
 

What I’ve found, in these past seven years, is that many of my friends and acquaintances that have gotten engaged have suffered from the same “phenomenon”. No one can really remember what was said, and no one can really remember hearing anything come out of their fiancé’s mouth. Almost everyone has a similar story.
 

It’s kind of funny when you think about it because guys stress so much over what to say, and we never end up hearing any of it…LOL! I guess, guys, that’s good for you. You don’t have to put so much pressure on yourself.
 

My advice to anyone getting engaged is to have it recorded somehow. Hide a hidden camera on a tripod, hide a friend with a camera in the trees, whatever you have to do, because we’re going to want to see it over and over again just so we can finally hear what you’re saying.
 
So, I’m curious…Have you suffered from “Engagement Hearing Loss?” We’d love to hear your proposal story and if you remember anything that was said.

 

Featured Photo Credit: Hannah Nicole Photography

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