French Destination Wedding Captured by AL Gawlik Photography | Jenna + Dominic
SWEET BEGINNINGS: While teaching kindergarten in Honduras, Jenna met Dominic who was backpacking throughout Central America. Jenna was running through the park early one morning when she passed a handsome man looking through his binoculars up into the trees. They waved at one another unaware that they would soon meet again. Later that night, they discovered they were staying at the same hostel and got to know one another over craft beer and a game of darts. The next morning, they went on their first official date – an early birding hike. Dom decided to ditch his plans to travel south to Nicaragua and instead, got on a bus to travel to the village where Jenna was living. He ended up staying with her for two months, and when Jenna finished the school year, they left to backpack through Nicaragua together. Taking it one day at a time, both knowing they were headed separate ways yet not wanting to part, the day came when Jenna had to fly back to the United States. It was a sad and emotional goodbye, but three days later Dominic called Jenna and told her that it was easy to make a quick stopover to visit her in Texas – a visit that ended up lasting two months!
PERFECT PROPOSAL: On the morning of Jenna’s birthday, the couple rode down to their favorite beach in Taiwan to watch the sunrise over the beautiful Pacific Ocean. Jenna had wanted to greet the sun on her 28th birthday, but had no idea that Dominic had special plans to propose. As they soaked in the golden light as the sun peeked over the horizon, Dominic read a poem he had written for Jenna. At the end, he asked her to be his wife and she excitedly said yes. Dominic gave Jenna a plastic ring from a toy machine to solidify the deal until he could get her a proper ring when they visited the United States.
THE SETTING: The couple had a destination wedding at Plan-de-la-Tour in France. The venue was the first villa the couple looked at, and after seeing the views of the Provencal countryside from the patio, they were sold. The venue space was very intimate, which was perfect for their 59 guests. It also had many bedrooms and was large enough for many of their family members to stay the entire week.
SAYING “I DO”: The bride recalls not being prepared for how fast her heart was beating as she was about to say, “I do.” One of the biggest pieces of advice she received was to soak everything in and focus on the moment because it goes so quickly. Jenna tried to slow down elements of the day by soaking in everything visually while taking deep breaths. When she saw Dominic’s face, she felt her heart open up and a big smile spread across her face – a magical moment.
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photography / AL GAWLIK PHOTOGRAPHY
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