Hi, we're Hunter and Sarah, a husband-and-wife, luxury wedding photography team. We’re also educators, helping other photographers build profitable and sustainable photography businesses.
As wedding photographers, one of the best parts of interacting with so many couples is hearing their stories. Each engaged couple has such a unique journey that’s brought them to where they are, and it’s one of the first questions we usually ask when we sit down to talk wedding photography with new couples. If you follow our blog, you know that we love to share stories as we show off images from our sessions – both our clients’ stories and stories from our time together.
However, it occurred to us this fall that the story that’s featured the least on our blog and social media is our own! Now that the cold weather is settling in and we won’t be shooting sessions three times a week, we finally have space on our blogging calendar to tell our own love story! As high school sweethearts, it’s a long one, but we hope you’ll join us each Saturday this winter as we share our story.
On our second dating anniversary, Hunter gave me a photobook filled with pictures, ticket stubs, and other trinkets that we had collected since we had begun dating. He called the album, “Remember that Time?” and it was filled with little reminders of fun dates and adventures we had had. Unbeknownst to me, just a few months into our relationship he had been making small notes on his phone anytime we went somewhere new or had a fun adventure with friends so that he could one day give me that book. When we sat down this fall to talk about this blog series, we couldn’t think of a title that was more true to us than “Remember that Time?”
The summer after Sarah graduated was our first summer together, but it was also the shortest we ever had. Because of high school ending in late-June and her going off to college orientation in mid-August, it felt like we were just settling into a rhythm of spending our days off work at the beach when she left.
Of course, I went with her and her family to help her move into her dorm at Christopher Newport University. And since she was only 45 minutes from home and I hadn’t gone back to school yet, I spent most of her first few weekends at CNU. But it goes without saying that I was worried. I didn’t know who her friends would be, how she would change during her time at college, or what boys she would meet.
After all, I was just some high school kid and every single day she was meeting college guys. We had kept dating after graduation for a reason, but I wasn’t sure if our relationship would survive the transition into college life.
We knew that most high school relationships would not survive the transition into college.
But to my great relief, Sarah made an incredible group of friends during her orientation week that would go on to be her friends all through college and beyond. Four of her CNU girls (and even two of her guy friends) would go on to stand next to us on our wedding day. Throughout her time in college her guy friends respected our relationship, and even made an effort to get to know me whenever I visited. And her girls encouraged her as a long-distance relationship became more difficult. I know we couldn’t have done this without them.
It’s obvious in hindsight that my worry was unfounded, but at the time I was beyond grateful for “The Wallabies” – the name her friend group was randomly assigned during orientation week that stuck to this day. Just this past December, we all reunited in Newport News for Wallaby Christmas. We spent the weekend together in the home of her friend Jonathan, the only Wallaby to stay in Newport News after graduation, catching up on each others’ lives and celebrating the holidays together. We are beyond grateful to God for putting these friends in Sarah’s life so early in her college career! She would need a good group of friends when the distance between us would go from barely 20 miles to almost 150 miles the following year…