Sneak Peek Elegant Cedarwood Garden Wedding - Sara & Connor
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I just love these two! Sara’s smile lights up everything around her including a cloudy, raining wedding ceremony. Connor is just the absolute best = they are perfect together. Sara and Connor met while they were both with separate friend groups sitting at different tables at Patterson House. Connor was stationed in Clarksville and Sara was on vacation. Crazily, Sara and one of her bridesmaids both met their husbands that night! 

Sara and Connor looked incredible on their wedding day and Historic Cedarwood looked stunning as always. The entire day was overcast and we were hoping that the rain would hold off until the reception but instead it decided to start raining right before Sara walked down the aisle. Sara and Connor were troopers and had their whole ceremony in the rain. They never complained once and STILL looked amazing afterwards. The rain ended almost as soon as we started their portraits leaving us with some really fun light to play with.  By far my favorite moment was when Sara was walking down the aisle to Connor on her dad's arm. She started crying and then started apologizing to all her guests for it! It was adorable. Please enjoy this sneak peek of Sara and Connor's Elegant Cedarwood Garden Wedding! 

Special Thanks To:
Venue- Cedarwood Weddings
Florals- Cedarwood Weddings
Catering- Dream Events and Catering
Hair & Makeup- One10Beauty
Wedding Gown- BHLDN
Rentals- Liberty Party Rental
Cake- Patty Cakes
Paper Goods - Designs in Paper
DJ- Premier

Paleo Slow Cooker Chicken Pad Thai with Veggie Noodles Recipe
 www.erinleeallender.com

This is not my favorite image ever...it's getting dark too early now and I needed a flash but I was afraid our dog Dodger would eat this dish while I went to get it........ SOOO with my cooking ADD who knows when I will make this dish again and it is too good of a recipe for me to not share because of a shadowy overhead light photo. I'm thinking of you. I honestly am. I love zucchini noodles, but my husband Taylor, not so much. He doesn't like how watery they are. This recipe has you "steam" the noodles in the crockpot while you're cooking everything else. It was brilliant! I put them in at the halfway mark to make sure they were still a little crunchy. The dish came out with a lot of flavor and a bit of a kick! This recipe came from Paleo Pot and you can get it HERE.

Sneak Peek Jewel-Toned Fall Ruby Wedding - Kelly & Neil
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Kelly & Neil's wedding at Ruby in Nashville this past weekend was just beautiful. When you have such a happy and smiling bride and groom it makes everything that much easier. They had their engagement session with me (and the adorable Major) earlier this year so it felt natural for me to be up in their faces all day at their wedding which made for even more authentic portraits. Add in Kelly's choice in wedding colors that popped in the softer fall light, and my heart was happy. Their reception was non stop and everyone there obviously loved to party. I even got to photograph my first Armenian wedding dance! Not only did I have all of the elements that makes for gorgeous photos, they both made me feel extremely welcome. At one point one of the guests pulled me on the dance floor. I escaped and Neil dragged me back in proclaiming that I was "the best photographer ever" so to say that I felt appreciated is an understatement. It was such a gorgeous day with a lovely couple. I am so happy that a year ago Kelly contacted me and that I got to be the one to photograph their Jewel-Toned Fall Ruby Wedding. Please check out their sneak peek below!

Thanks to their vendors:
Venue: Ruby
Florals: A Village of Flowers
Desserts: Dulce Desserts
Hair & Makeup: Kati Edge
Wedding Gown: LVD Bridal
Rentals: Liberty Party Rental
Catering: Bacon & Caviar
Band: Emerald Empire Band

Belle Meade Plantation 1 Year Old Session - Charlie
 www.erinleeallender.com

This blog should be called the many funny and adorable faces of Charlie. So many expressions from this child (that I think he gets from his mom) and as you know, I love funny kid faces. I know both of Charlie's parents from working with them in the wedding and event industry so when they asked me to photograph this cute little guy's 1 year portraits, I couldn't wait. The area that we started the session in was were Charlie's parents were married! Please enjoy this sneak peek of Charlie's Belle Meade Plantation 1 Year Old Session. 

Franklin Toddler Family Session
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This funny little wiggle worm turned two a few days ago and in honor of her birthday we did a family session at Grandma's house in Franklin. She has the just the sweetest personality and found it hilarious when I said yucky or icky. She's such a little goofball and is so much fun to photograph. Please enjoy her Toddler Family Session sneak peek!

Sneak Peek Murfreesboro Private Home Wedding - Kayla & Dillon
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Last month I photographed getting ready photos for Lauren's wedding in her parents' home and this past weekend I got to photograph her sister Kayla's whole wedding there! This is my first back to back weddings of sisters (how do you properly say that?) and I am really loving getting to spend extended time with a family and then getting to do it all over again. Lauren joked that they will see me next month for our next family gathering.

Kayla and Dillon met in college. They are both so sweet and reserved but have a great affinity for adventure. I think they said that on their honeymoon they will see their 19th national park together. Kayla looked stunning and as her brother-in-law Michael said, very Jackie 0. in her short mod dress. Dillon looked very handsome in his suit and green tie! They decided to have their wedding and reception at Kayla's parents' house with only immediate family present. Kayla's mom, Katherine did all the floral and cooked all the food. The couple was married by a judge that is a dear family friend the girls grew up with. After the ceremony everyone sat down in the dining room to a delicious dinner. I was even included at the table and was sent home with amazing leftovers. Katherine, my husband devoured them. Congratulations to Kayla and Dillon! I hope you are enjoying Hawaii. Please enjoy this sneak peek Kayla and Dillon's Murfreesboro Private Home Wedding.

Erin Allender
Quinoa Chickpea and Avocado Salad Recipe
 www.erinleeallender.com

This past week this recipe popped up in my Facebook feed and I decided to try it. It is so easy to make and is soooo good. When the hardest part of a recipe is making the quinoa, it's my kind of recipe. I used my Instant Pot to make the quinoa but you could always buy the precooked frozen kind to make it even less painless. The recipe is vegan, but I added feta to it which, in my opinion, makes everything better. This recipe comes from one of my favorite food recipe bloggers - Skinny Taste. You can find the full recipe HERE.

Vegan Tortilla Soup Recipe
 www.erinleeallender.com

I was planning on making this recipe a couple weeks when it was freezing cold, but life and work got in the way and I made it today and it's close to 90 out. This is nowhere near as pretty as anything that I photographed this past weekend at Food and Wine, but it still tasted pretty dang good. It's really garlicky which I love.. just make sure that you eat it on a day when you're not planning to be around people for several hours. Also don't burn your parchment paper like I did while crisping up your tortilla. Thanks to Running on Real food for creating this recipe. It really was delicious.  Get "The Best Vegan Tortilla Soup Recipe" Here.

Recap of Music City Food & Wine 2017
Music_City_Food_Wine_2017

This past weekend I was lucky enough to be hired to be on the photography team for Nashville's  Music City Food and Wine. I got to work with an amazing team of people while photographing (and eating) delicious food. It is always nice to step out of my wedding photography "comfort" zone and be challenged by shooting something different like marketing photos. We photographed over three days and my iWatch (I'm so cool) said that I walked anywhere between 7-9 miles each day. Basically I got to eat carb filled food while avoiding the gym so.... it was pretty awesome. Below are a few of my favorites. 

Friday

Saturday

Harvest Night

Gospel Brunch

Sunset Nashville Skyline Proposal - Bill & Becky
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Bill contacted me a month ago and said that he and his girlfriend Becky were going to be visiting Nashville and he was going to surprise her by proposing! Would I be interested in photographing it? Of course! Last Friday I found my spot on the John Seigenthaler Pedestrian Bridge and fended off millennials with selfie sticks. When Bill walked, up two bicyclists had taken over my location and I had to motion to Bill to propose in a different spot. There is always something, but it all worked out! Becky was excited and shocked. You'll see the shot where Bill pointed me out. Congratulations Bill & Becky! Thanks for choosing me to photograph your Sunset Nashville Skyline Wedding Proposal!

Elegant Symphony Center Wedding - Kristina & Trey
 www.erinleeallender.com

Kristina & Trey met when they both were attending the La-Tex Crawfish Boil in Brooklyn, New York. Kristina's cousin stopped Trey to take a photo of her and Kristina and a love story was born. This strikingly good looking, highly intelligent, and extremely fun couple, were married this past Saturday at The Schermerhorn Symphony Center. They reside in New York City but decided to have their wedding in Tennessee closer to Trey's family. Trey recently finished up a judicial clerkship with Chief Justice Jeffrey S. Bivins (like I said highly intelligent) and the Chief Justice married the couple in The Schermerhorn's gorgeous courtyard. These two had my FAVORITE first dance ever. They made it up on the spot and it beautifully incorporated many classic's like the Kid N Play. Also their flower girl could out dance anyone. Literally anyone.  Please enjoy their sneak peek!

Vendors:
Venue: Schermerhorn Symphony Center
Planning & Design: Angela Proffitt
Hair: Reginald March
Makeup: Blushed Beauty
Florals: Lauren Marie Atkinson Designs
Cake: Jay Qualls
Lighting: Nashville Event Lighting
Rentals: Music City Tents
Linens: BBJ Linen
Gown: Custom Galia Lahav
Bride's Shoes: Christian Louboutin
Bridal Stylist: Fashion4Brides
Groom's Tuxedo: Custom Tom Ford
Groom's Shoes: Hugo Boss
Groomsmen's Tuxedo: The Black Tux
Bridesmaid's Alterations: Karen Hendrix Couture
Videography - Zane Karl Studios
DJ: Spangler Entertainment
Catering: Chef's Market

In Home Family Session - Schneider Family
 www.erinleeallender.com

When I'm not photographing weddings, I love to do family sessions! I met the Schneider family when I photographed their eldest's Bat Mitzvah portraits. I instantly fell in love with this family so when they asked me to come back and photograph the whole crew in their home, I was super excited! To keep things more casual, mom and dad let the kids wear what they would be comfortable in. Rachel literally wanted "Just ONE good one of them all together" which left me room to photograph all them being themselves ...which is my absolute favorite! Please enjoy this In Home Family Session!

Crispy Baked Peanut Tofu and Cauliflower Rice Stir-Fry Recipe
 www.erinleeallender.com

I am not a good cook. I can semi follow a recipe alright. Although the bok choy in this shot is not cooked all the way, the tofu isn't caramelized enough, and I stuck the plate in the microwave after taking this photo, it was SOOO delicious. The recipe was from Minimalist Baker and you should definitely make it. Click HERE to get the recipe. I used frozen cauliflower rice to save time (although I didn't thaw it long enough hence the microwave) and used expired maple syrup instead of honey because my honey had solidified. I'm still alive and it was still good!

Sneak Peek Bookish Murfreesboro Intimate Wedding - Lauren & Michael
 www.erinleeallender.com

Oh my gosh you guys! This wedding has all of my favorite things - It's in the couple's backyard, it's a tiny wedding, IT HAS DOGS, it has a literature themed decor, a dinosaur cake topper with attire to match the bride and groom's attire, and most importantly an extremely sweet and fun couple! Did I say that it has dogs??

Lauren always wanted to be a librarian but became a lawyer instead.  She met Michael a few years ago and guess what? He IS a librarian! So they decided to get married. I'm sure it actually had a lot to do with his other redeeming qualities and not just his job. 

Cooper and Charlie's mom and dad were married in their backyard this past Saturday and I was lucky enough to be there to photograph it. The decor made my nerdy heart happy and you will not believe that the florals were done by Lauren's mom! The best part of all of this is that I get to see everyone again next month when I photograph Lauren's sister Kayla's wedding! Please enjoy this Bookish Murfreesboro Intimate Wedding! 

Special thanks to their vendors:
Dress- Mod Cloth
Florals- Lauren's Mom
Cake- Publix
Judge- Judge Donna Davenport
Catering - Tasty Table Fine Event Catering
Rentals- Stewart Special Events

 

Chicago Area Family Session - Aggie & Emmie
 www.erinleeallender.com

These two are the daughters of one of my dearest friends. We met while I was in high school when a friend of a friend recommended me to play drums for her and her husband's band. We played together for 4 years and have a lot of crazy stories to tell. We have the kind of friendship that no matter how long we are apart we start right back up where we left off. I miss her.

Last week I drove home from Nashville to the Chicago suburbs to visit my family and while I was there I had the opportunity to photograph her little girls. Sisters are seriously my favorite and these two have my heart. The last two photos are "outtake" images that made me cry-laugh while working a coffee shop! Please enjoy this Chicago Area Family Session!