Where do you even begin to start for this New York wedding? Bear with me on this emotional and very meaningful day. A couple of adjectives come to mind: Honored, flattered and humbled. Just to name 3. See, I’ve known the groom since the day he was born. Although I don’t remember the day, since I was a kid myself. The groom is my cousin. Some of my favorite memories of Adam were running around our grandparent’s house in Long Island, NY eating the Andes Mints that our grandmother would put in a candy dish on the credenza. Hiding in the coat closets with him and I specifically remember having to give him my easter eggs one year on our annual easter egg hunt because well, I simply was the oldest, and I apparently didn’t care that I had more eggs than him. Enter your eye roll there, but here’s where it’s plain as day that I was the only child. There were many other days that I could talk about, our Uncle Lenny’s river house we use to go to, that always smelled stale. Visits to our Great Grandparents house on Pringle Hill (a neighborhood of pretty much ALL Polish people) but Adam allowed me to share something SPECTACULAR in his life. His Mom. My Aunt and my Godmother. If you’ve followed my work and me on social media you will know this TRULY amazing woman left our world to forever look over us in 2012. Beth always had BIGGER plans. Although we wish she would have stayed, I’ve been able to watch Adam become more of a man these last 7 years and then find the absolute love of his life… Aime. Adam proposed to Aime and I thought, well that was BOLD- my Adam Benjamin is in LOVE. This beautiful brunette made his grin get bigger than it had before and loved him for every piece of who he was. I’d say that’s enough for me. But when Adam reached out to me and told me that he wouldn’t have anyone else to photograph his wedding this is where all those adjectives I used earlier come into use. Adam is a photographer himself up in Poughkeepsie and he wanted someone that understood them and had incredible work. I was over here looking from side to side saying… ME????
When I spoke with Aime and Adam on FaceTime they told me they wanted to keep things simple. It was important for them to stay true to themselves. Keeping their love for books, and cameras and eclectic mix-matched plates and glasses. Their love for craft beer, good wine and really just have a room filled with people they completely and utterly love. It was their only goal.
The day of came quickly, I got to hang with the Aime and the girls as they ate pizza in a hotel room next to Locust Grove Estate, It was the first time I had EVER got to hug her. She greeted me with a huge smile and hug and I got to make her feel like a bride with the best ladies by her side. Adam’s sister Mikki met Adam at Locust Grove Estate and it was the first time we really acknowledged the “Elephant in the room” their Mom not being present that day physically. Which oddly enough… those elephants were everywhere they needed to be that day. Mikki had a picture of her framed for Adam’s sweetheart table. It would sit right on her favorite plate that said: “You are Special Today” which was a plate that if you got a good grade, or broke a board at Karate you got to eat dinner off it, or she’d put a special dessert on. But Adam broke down when he opened a small pink heart to find a broach with an elephant on it and a picture of a young Beth in her prime. They all had elephants that day. Both Adam’s sister and brother carried an elephant broach with them all day. Aime had an elephant pin of Beth’s on her eco bouquet. Butterflies flew around the garden all day, the weather was perfect New York Fall and I could hear her voice everywhere I turned. “Good Job Kiddo” , “Adam Benjamin, (she had a thing for including middle names) ..I’m so proud of you” I had shared with Adam the night before via text that she had come to me in a dream. I was outside, she was across the way and she simply waved to me and then, she was gone. I had told him, she wanted me to know she wasn’t missing this day for the world. The two of them had their first look and then Adam’s dad, my Uncle Mark rolled in his 64 Classic Studebaker Hawk and we got to take pictures that would carry with them all for the rest of their lives.
The ceremony was sweet and exactly to the point. They wrote their own vows, and much to Adam’s disliking he wasn’t allowed to start with the famous When Harry Met Sally line. Tears flowed down the families faces watching Adam Benjamin promise simply forever to Aime. It was the perfect day. So to take my cousin’s side in things, I’ll end with what he probably wanted to say to you Aime…