Mike and Shari

I was so excited to photograph this elopement in Curacao and now I am so excited to share it with you! I have had the pleasure of knowing this couple for 9 years now! The groom is actually my husband's father. The first time I met Mike and Shari they were over at my husband's apartment and Shari was sitting in Mike's lap in an old worn down recliner. I remember thinking that they were so giggly and in love....they must have JUST gotten together. WRONG. They had already been together 4 years at that point and still just had that "fresh love" thing going for them. Fast forward 9 years later! Shari has been there to watch me and my husband date, get married, buy a house, and be Oma (Grandma) to my two children. It seemed so fitting that she would FINALLY take the Kotaniemi last name! We as a family took a cruise down to the virgin islands to celebrate their love. On the cruise we stopped on the island of Curacao and married these two love birds. The BEST part is, they STILL have that fresh love.

Shari and Mike's first look was a first for me. I did my normal routine of getting the groom in place and telling the bride where he is going to be. What I was NOT expecting (and neither was Mike) was that Shari had a clown nose and glasses on for the big reveal! While most might just see this as silly and hilarious, I can't tell you how much this is a testament to their love. Their love is fun, it's unique, it's carefree, and it's full of little surprises.

Before the ceremony we took a few bridal portraits that went a little something like this...

The ceremony was simple and on a small cliff overlooking the ocean. It was beautiful and genuine in every sense.

This calls for a GROUP HUG!

and now it's time for happily ever after! But first they have to act like they are going to throw each other off the cliff! lol

CONGRATS to my father in law and OFFICIAL mother in law! I'm so happy I got to share in your special day!

Stephanie Kotaniemi