The wedding on the blog today is one of those full-circle, fairytale-ending love stories that you hear about! AJ and Ashley met in the dining hall at Ruttger’s Bay Lake Lodge in Deerwood, Minnesota. Both from the area, they met while working a summer job at the beloved family-owned lodge. When they met that first day in the dining hall, I’m sure they had NO idea that the other would one day not only be their spouse, but that they would be celebrating with their closest family and friends just upstairs from that initial, fate-filled meeting : )
Neither Caleb nor I had ever been to northern Minnesota prior to this past weekend and we could not get over how beautiful this part of the country is! Every time we would round a bend on the highway we would have the view of yet another GORGEOUS lake! It is the land of 10,000 lakes and as far as I can tell, they aren’t lying about that! It truly is such a breath-taking and peaceful area! As we sat on the dock drinking coffee before our work began for AJ and Ashley’s wedding, we talked about yet another blessing of this career in getting to experience new places!
The first thing I noticed after meeting both AJ and Ashley’s families on the morning of the wedding was how incredibly welcoming EVERYONE was. We felt so included and cared for all day long and that is something I am also so grateful for! Ashley has one twin brother and AJ has one older sister and each of these siblings gave a toast at the reception that said the same thing (in their own unique ways, of course!) — that Ashley/AJ was the PERFECT match for their sibling and welcoming them into the family was natural, easy, and nothing but a joy!!
The Best Man and Maid of Honor also gave toasts that were very similar to one another, each describing AJ and Ashley’s long, long-distance relationship (like Ashley was living in China type of long distance!) and how many people might not choose to go through something like that but these two did and it was such an example to those around them of true, inspiring commitment to the one you love.
Without further adieu, let’s get to these images! Enjoy some of our favorites and congratulations one last time to the brand new Mr. and Mrs. Gross!! #letsgetgross (had to share the amazing/hilarious wedding day hashtag!!!) : )
A special thank you to AJ & Ashley’s wedding day team!
Ceremony Venue: St. Joseph’s Catholic Church | Reception Venue: Ruttger’s Bay Lake Lodge | Florist: Petals and Beans | DJ: AT Entertainment | Hair Artist: Ashley Ann Hair | Wedding Dress Shop: The Wedding Shoppe | Bridesmaid Dresses: For For and For Him | Menswear: Arlene’s Bridal | Stationery: Ramsey Printing & Design