Overcoming Challenges Together  MAR 02 10

from Melissa Jill Photography : site | blog

Jay and Lisa met in 2003 when mutual friends started dating. Together, these two are travelers -- adventurers with a love for finding new places, discovering new things, eating new food. It was on one of these adventures that Jay proposed and they knew they had a lifetime of adventures to come.

However, there was one adventure they weren't expecting. Lisa was diagnosed with cancer in 2008. It was a devastating verdict for both Lisa and for Jay, the man who loved her. The weeks and months that followed were some of the most challenging the two have known. However with Jay's generous spirit and Lisa's unwavering strength, they overcame one of life's biggest obstacles and Lisa is now cancer free!

Jay and Lisa made their committment to one another official on Saturday at the Hotel Valley Ho in Scottsdale. This retro-style hotel was such a fun place for a wedding. There were so many bright popping colors and fun pieces of art to work with.


Here's some of my favorite photos from the day:


Lisa's mom and sister helped her into her gown:



Jay and Lisa's golden retriever, Mason, hung out with the guys in their suite:



The couple saw each other before the ceremony which gave us plenty of time to walk around the property and get some fun portraits:






The ceremony was done in the round. What an amazing location:

Jay ... Lisa did all of their own paper products and had so much fun doing them that they're thinking of making a business out of it.

Mason did an amazing job as the ring bearer:

Lisa looked unbelievable as her dad walked her down the aisle:

The ceremony was officiated by my favorite officiant -- Scott Swanson -- and included a number of personal touches. A candle was lit and a rose was placed on the front table in rememberance of Jay's father and Lisa's grandmother. A friend sang "All you Need is Love" by the Beatles and Scott read some love letters from Jay ... Lisa to one another. I love what Jay ... Lisa shared in these letters to one another.

Love Letter from Lisa:

"I am certain that Jay is my reward for everything good I've ever done in my life. I am so incredibly lucky to have found both a best friend and an amazing partner in him. He loves me with everything he's got, all the time. And no matter how hard life gets, that never changes. I admire his strength to stand by me through our most difficult challenges and am grateful for his unwavering belief in us. He moves me to tears with the sincerity of his heart and I love that about him. His never-ending quest for all that is good and fair coupled with his smile are daily reminders why this was the best choice I've ever made. I often wonder if everyone sees him in this amazing light. Just get to know him a bit, and you'll know why I'm completely in love with him."

Love Letter from Jay:

"From the time I first laid eyes on Lisa I had a feeling that we would be together. There was something about her joyous smile and confidence. I loved that she was always happy and seemed like she would be a great person to get to know. Years later after our first date I knew that I was right in my feelings about Lisa and that we had a great future together. I love that she puts herself and her feelings out there and is always honest with me. I love her strength. The one thing that stands above all the rest in my things that I love most about Lisa is that she is a fighter. I knew that when she survived cancer it was because of positive outlook on life and her strength. She is my best friend, lover, partner and confidant."

The cocktail hour was held on the roof of the hotel. I know I've said this once already in this post but what an amazing location!

Here are some of the fun reception details.

Flowers by Flowers by Jodi
Cake by La Dolce Pesca

The first dance:

Jay and Lisa have some fun friends who know how to party! Desert House Productions DJs kept the tunes flowing and I had fun capturing the craziness on the dance floor:




Who do you think caught the garder?

Totally looks like purple shirt or groomsman should have had it, right? Instead it went down like most garder tosses I witness at weddings do -- no one caught it. It ended up on the floor. What's up with that guys? Girls have a way better percentage on you with the bouquet and the garder has to be easier to catch. It practically floats. Let's try to step up and be more manly men next time, k? :)

Purple shirt guy ended up swipping it off the ground first and wore it on his head as the proud victor.