This engagement session was super special for me. When I saw Cara post her photos from her engagement to Tom, I had high hopes for her reaching out to me about engagement photos. Months go by, COVID-19 takes over everyone’s minds. As the states started opening back up, I decided to take a trip back to Illinois to see family.
When I posted online that I would be in Illinois, Cara facebook messaged me about any remaining availability for a session. I internally squealed and did a happy dance. I messaged her back right away knowing I would do whatever to make a session work! We ended up settling on my last night in town. And boy did we get lucky.
Let’s back up a bit. I have known Cara since I was in kindergarten. We grew up in the same small town, and went to school together. We were in the same classes frequently, but I would say we really became closer as we were in high school. We were both in band and spent many hours our freshman year commiserating our luck over the “experiences” we had.
We did band again through our remaining three years and enjoyed those much better. We were also office assistants together, which mainly consisted of me begging her to make the announcements at the end of the hour. I can’t tell you how much anxiety I would feel as the time ticked closer to the end of the period and Cara wasn’t there to make the announcements. Most days we just talked and laughed while making copies or running across the street to get the lunches for the people in detention.
As years went by, we stayed in touch through Facebook and Instagram. I hadn’t seen Cara since we graduated high school, maybe at some Christmas parties one of our mutual friend had thrown. But, it was so nice to hug and laugh and talk as if nothing had changed.
Cara has one of those personalities that draws people to her. She is funny, smart and is amazing at making you feel at ease. Tom was more reserved at first, not sure what to do with me being as loud as his fiancee. But, he warmed up and his quiet sense of humor and willingness to do anything and everything to appease Cara (and my bossiness) was amazing. I can see by the way he looks at Cara that these two were meant to be.
Being able to be a small part in these chapters of people’s lives is so special to me. I love capturing the love, joy and excitement they share. It was no different for Cara & Tom.
We met at her grandparent’s farm out in the country of Farmer City. We got lucky with an unseasonably “cool” evening with lower humidity. Just the day before it was high humidity and HOT! We didn’t have to be melting by just existing, let alone snuggling and sweating on each other! There was even a slight breeze and amazing summer light.
Cara drove us through some “rough country” of horse manure with her grandparents’ Gator. She had already scouted out some amazing locations for me to work with. She did GREAT. Everywhere I turned, there was something awesome to work with.
The outfits they chose were so complementary to each other and to the environment. They both looked amazing in each outfit.
The looks and laughter they shared made the session fly by quickly with so much fun. They were both pros at getting their portraits done. It was impossible to take a bad photo! They were both laid back and so much fun to be around. I think Tom even warmed up to me by the end of it!
Enjoy learning more about Cara & Tom.
How did you and your fiance meet?
We actually met on Bumble! After a brief, no-frills conversation on Bumble, he asked me if I wanted to get dinner. We met up at Destihl and had dinner. I learned that he liked to cook and was super handy, and that pretty much sealed the deal for me! After dinner, we decided we definitely weren’t done with the date, so we had a beer at The Blind Pig.
Tell me about yourselves: jobs, hobbies, etc
Tom is a construction site superintendent, and he loves all things construction and DIY! I’m a school counselor for students in grades 4 through 8. We love to cook and do all sorts of home projects and renovations!
Tell me about your personalities! Are you peas in a pod or total opposites?
Tom can be fairly quiet and slow to warm up to people, whereas I’m a total loudmouth and I never stop talking! It’s a pretty good balance! We’re both pretty laid back people. Tom is a very focused and structured person, and I’m a total free spirit.
How long did you date before you knew he/she was the one?
Cara: I really can’t pinpoint a moment when I knew he was the one, as it was pretty gradual. There were some key moments, like when I first met his family and I felt like I meshed so well with everyone. When we would work together on something, like cooking a meal or renovating a bathroom, I realized how much I loved working as a team.
Tom: I don’t have a specific time or date. But I’ll say that as the relationship progressed, there are a few instances that confirmed that she was special, sweet, kind, and I knew she had my back.
When & Where will you get married?
Our wedding date is August 7, 2021, at Hudson Farm in Urbana.
What do you admire most about each other?
Cara: I admire how focused and headstrong Tom is. He works hard at everything he takes on, and he always motivates me to do better.
Tom: That she can be so sweet in times when either I’m being sour, or the moment is negative. Also, I appreciate that we have shared interests like cooking, home remodeling, and crafty projects.
What is your ideal date night? Night on the town, or snuggle on the couch?
Our ideal date night is cooking an awesome meal together and just hanging out on the couch. That, or going out to eat good food and drink beer!
Here are some of my favorites from their session. Congratulations you guys, I can’t wait to see your wedding photos next August! I’ll be cheering you on from Germany!
Cara & Tom, it was wonderful to work with you guys. Thank you so much for letting me be a part of this awesome time in your life!