Mikenzie Ryan Photography » Luxury and destination wedding photographer

There are very few things better than photographing one of your best friends and her family! Not only because they are adorable, but because they are comfortable working with me! Plus I pick pretty awesome friends who come from amazing families 🙂 All of this combined with Berry Springs Park’s gorgeous setting made for a perfect fall evening photo shoot! Enjoy!

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I’ve got a surprise, mid-week blog for you all! Weekends are for weddings, and Monday’s are for engagement photo shoots like this one! Wedding season for a photographer is packed with 7 day work weeks, which means more photo sessions and more blogs for you all to check out! Really though, in the craziness of fall weddings, I catch myself being so grateful to leave my office at 10PM instead of the normal hours because I get to spend so much time with people that truly make this photography gig the best job in the world.

Exhibit A… Zach and Aria. The adorable, fun loving, bring wine to an engagement session, kick your super cute booties off and hop in the river in your formal clothes kinda’ couple! Aria told me this was the first time they’ve had professional photos done together, but honestly, I don’t believe them. They warmed up to the camera so fast and had no problem jumping into poses that I warned, may feel a little strange!

Aria + Zach, I hope you both enjoyed being in the spot light as much as I enjoyed documenting your engagement! Now, let’s start wedding planning!!

 

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Happy Monday friends! It was a weekend full of weddings, family sessions, a whole lot of Chuys, and my heart is so full. So, to kick off the week, we are sharing a sneak peek into Crysta + Fred’s beautiful wedding from Saturday! One of my favorite things about being a photographer is no two jobs are the same. This may be because our clients are all so diverse (obviously!), the different color schemes or variety of vendors I get to work with. But this weekend was special because I got to scope out a venue I have never seen before, and it was like exploring new territory!

When you drive up to Star Hill Ranch, you feel like you’ve walked into a whole new town built in the the 1800’s. Historic saloon, old western gas station, a beautifully built chapel and just a short walk away was a gorgeous outdoor gazebo for the ceremony! I have never seen anything like this when it comes to a wedding venue, but I was constantly surprised by all the nooks to use for portraits. Endless options = a photographers dream!

Crysta’s choice of colors for her mid November wedding were nothing short of perfection. The french blue dresses, subtle natural tones in her florals throughout the event and the pop of soft pink sprinkled in had me in awe. Star Hill Ranch is an obvious choice for a rustic themed wedding, but Crysta decided to take the mint shades on some of the cabins, along with the adorable white chapel and put a gorgeous, elegant twist to capture her vision for her big day. Needless to say, I was in love with it ALL!

Crysta + Fred, thank you for sharing such a joyful day with me! From the stories your friends and family shared about you both, to watching you guys become giddy each time you’d see each other, it’s obvious you have found the perfect second half. Documenting the start of your new beginning together was such an honor and I cannot wait to hit “Publish” to share all the memories with you! Enjoy!

Vendors:
Venue: Star Hill Ranch
Planner: Barbara’s Brides
DJ: Hill Country DJ
Cake: Round Rock Donuts
Flowers: Bouquets of Austin
Rentals: Premiere Events
Hair + Makeup: Austin Wedding Hair
Catering: Pascal’s Catering

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Before all the fun sharing of our recent trip, I wanted to take a second to say thank you to all the troops that have and will serve our country. The sacrifices that are made by them, as well as their entire families is something I know all too well and am eternally grateful for. The separation, whether your loved one is in danger or not, is a constant battle and heartache that I know is no easy feat. Thank you all for your courage and strength that makes this country so darn amazing.

If you are out and about today, maybe you’ll see a veteran, buy them some coffee! Or a cookie, everyone loves cookies. And even if you don’t see a veteran, smile at a stranger, pimp some joy and remember how lucky we are to walk the streets of such a beautiful country!

Now, not to dilute such an important day, but I wanted to share a little about our recent girls trip to Nashville and some of our favorite spots! I only have a limited amount of weekends before Atlas makes her debut, so I am filling them with road trips, camping, and girls trips! Especially while the weather is so perfect!

So, last weekend we hopped on a plane to Nashville for a girls getaway with some of my favorite humans! More than anything, I think this trip confirmed the fact that I need to live outside of Texas where seasons exist. That, and I am in love with flower trucks.

We took a pedal tour, brunched like pros, walked a couple of miles for no good reason and listened to some great (and some bad!) live music! It really was the perfect getaway to break up wedding season and get me through the last half of our scheduled events! Sometimes, you just need a good donut, a couple tacos and some girl time <3

Some of my favorites:
Bar Taco- We originally went to eat here to stalk Thomas Rhett, and ended up eating one of our favorite meals of the trip! Go, eat tacos, drink margaritas. Plan to wait, this place is poppin’.
Amelia’s Flower Truck- I follow this truck on Instagram, and when we showed up to brunch one day, the truck just happened to be parked outside the restaurant we were eating at!! I was seriously so excited that I made a fool out of myself. But either way, every town needs one of these!

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The Pub- Bottomless mimosas (for those of you who aren’t pregnant…) and delicious bacon-gravy. Enough said.
12 South- Nashville is made up of different ‘districts’, and I think this was our favorite! Lots of local shops, coffee, and yummy food. Half of what makes Nashville so great is you can just walk around and you are totally content, and this was one of our favorite spots!
Flipside (12 South)– Ahhh such a cute spot! Lots of unique cocktails and has a very old, vintage theme, with big garage doors that keep the restaurant nice and open. Just another reason 12 South is awesome.

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Frothy Monkey- A local coffee shop that is spread throughout Nashville and is SO good! Plus, you really get a feel for the Nashville vibe.
Five Daughters Bakery- The. Best. Donuts. Ever. And sooooo many options! Also, right down the street from Bar Taco, so, it’s kinda perfect.
The Hook- Cheap, good happy hour, lots of specials and really great seafood! Plus, the manager made me a virgin cocktail because I mentioned that something sounded good. How sweet is that?!
Centennial Park- Because I am 24 weeks pregnant, I was unable to hang on those late night Broadway tours. So I woke up early one morning and took a quick Uber to Centennial Park and did a 2 mile walk! It felt a lot like a mini Central Park in the middle of Nashville. Definitely a fun stop if you like being outdoors!

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East Nashville- Lots of adorable shops and little alley ways filled with boutiques! This was a fun day activity, other than eating, of course 🙂
Nashville Pedal Tavern- Oh my gosh, the pedal tour. This is such a great group event and a fun way to meet more people visiting Nashville! The crew is fun, BYOB and really isn’t a difficult exercise! Plus, you make a couple stops at local bars with drink specials just for those on the tour! I definitely recommend this for anyone checking out Nashville for the first time!

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Ohhhh boy. You guys are in for a treat. Even though Taylor + Chase’s wedding fell on our due date for sweet Atlas, I am SO glad I got to photograph their engagement and save the date photos! This adorable couple stuck out the heat (triple digits is a normal evening here in Texas), fought the traffic due to a wildfire (again, thanks Texas heat!), all to capture their love for each other on Chase’s family ranch in Georgetown! I love when couples choose a place that is special to them because it makes the photos THAT much more meaningful. Plus, the lighting at the ranch has me wishing I could just have a blog full of heart eye emojis! Still considering that for the instagram caption 😉

Taylor and Chase, thank you for being so gracious about our surprise coming March 4th and the change of plans. I wish so badly we could be there for your big day but know you, Taylor, will make the most beautiful bride! Cannot wait to see the photos of the wedding day and all the adventures you two start on once you are MARRIED!

 

 

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