Sadie is one of my childhood friends, and I have vivid memories of weekend days spent sipping frappuccinos at Starbucks as high school students, venting about relationships and school work. We were both cheerleaders and she was one of my first senior portrait clients way, way back in the day.

Sadie and I had lost touch since we moved to the south, but we would see intermittent updates about each other on Facebook. I was thrilled to hear that she was engaged and even more excited when she shared that they wanted to plan a destination elopement with me! They ultimately settled on Telluride for their elopement, choosing the fall in hopes that the aspen trees would be yellow.

I remember sitting on the back patio of their rental eating Thai food and catching up the evening before. We were all adjusting to the elevation and jet lag. We shared family stories and love stories, mostly about how well our partners complement us and support us.

We met up in the afternoon, and they helped each other into their dresses. Sadie and Whitney signed their marriage license, and then we jumped in my rental Jeep to climb into the mountains. The backroads of Telluride are fun to drive, but there is this one section in particular for this view that is exceptionally a little difficult. We all held our breaths (and took deeper ones because we were at 10,000+ feet) as we bounced over the dirt road.

In Colorado you do not need a witness or officiant to get married, and they decided to keep it simple. Sadie and Whitney read cards that their parents had left for them, and then they exchanged vows. After a beer, we explored the ridge line as the sun dipped below the monumental cliffs.

Sadie wanted to pop champagne, but we didn’t realize that the carbonation is extreme when you shake champagne and drink it immediately after. Sadie had quite the surprise of bubbles in her face, but it all made us laugh hysterically.

The sun faded and transitioned to a pastel palette. The air chilled, and Sadie + Whitney settled into their airbnb for a cozy dinner by the fireplace.

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  1. Kelly McArdle says:

    One of the greatest joys in my life is watching these two on their journey. Seeing someone love your child as much as you do is all you could ever ask for. I am so proud to call Sadie my daughter-in-law! As a life-long Whitney observer, the emotions you captured on that day will be cherished by me forever. Thank you.