an Irish Wedding

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An Irish Wedding

& Modern Day Love Story with Suzie & Rich


“I love his kind heart, his sense of humor, his close relationships with all his family members and his amazing work ethic.”  Suzie

When I see two people holding hands with love and respect radiating between them, I feel overwhelmed with happiness.   The best way to share Suzie & Rich’s love story, is to hear it from Suzie so I’ll let her tell their story…

The Beginning: September 2007

When I first met Rich, I didn’t think too much about it. I was working as a bartender and he worked at an office across the street. He would stop in pretty frequently to unwind after a long day. He would ask for my number on occasion, but I continued to play coy. He was a regular customer of mine for a year before his charm finally won me over. It took some persistence, but he finally presented an offer I couldn’t refuse.

Knowing I was a die hard Red Sox fan, he invited me on the date of a lifetime…a World Series playoff game at Fenway Park!  We had an absolute blast watching my home team and getting to know each other with each passing minute. The only thing more exciting than the game was the connection forming before our very eyes.

The night continued with a celebration at a bar on Lansdowne Street where, ironically, a fan eagerly approached with a business card offering to be our wedding photographer. I was admittedly floored and so was she when I told her we were on our first date. After recovering from her initial disbelief, she declared with confidence that Rich and I were clearly meant to be, since everyone in the bar could see how in love we were. The rest is history.

The Proposal: April 30, 2010

After two years of dating, I made the move from Boston to New Jersey to be with Rich. On a Friday afternoon about a month later, he called my office to say he’d made dinner reservations at the shore. He insisted I come straight home so we could make our 8pm reservation. We’d been discussing a fun date night for Saturday, so I was a bit thrown off when he sprung it on me a day early. The engagement was somewhere in the back of my mind but I didn’t think it could possibly be so soon after the move.

I walked into our apartment and Rich handed me a mimosa. I unsuspectingly savored each sip as he casually downplayed the evening as “just dinner.” Not long after, we arrived the Oyster Point Hotel in Red Bank, where I remained clueless as to what was about to unfold. The host confirmed our reservation and informed us that our table would be ready momentarily.

The restaurant sits overlooking the Navesink River, presenting stunning views of the water for those guests lucky enough to dine at the coveted tables near the giant bay windows. I was saddened to notice that those tables were occupied but threw caution to the wind, suggesting to the host that we wait for one to become available. The host graciously complied and Rich excused himself to use the restroom. I waited patiently, completely unaware that he had made a mad dash to the kitchen in an attempt to adjust the logistics he’d previously orchestrated with the hotel staff. I had unknowingly thrown off his entire plan!

Despite his nerves, Rich returned to my side as if nothing had happened. He nonchalantly wiped the sweat from his brow and within a few minutes the Maitre’D escorted us towards the patio. “Jackpot!” My face instantly lit up at the thought of the beautiful dinner we were about to enjoy. Little did I know that the moment I’d dreamt of for so long was about to take place.

Once out on the deck, I walked over the edge to take in the breathtaking view. It was an unseasonably warm spring evening. I leaned over to get a better look at the glistening water as Rich came up behind me. He placed his hand on the small of my back and whispered, “You know I love you, right?” I smiled and replied, “Yes babe.” Before I could manage another thought, my heart skipped a beat. Rich bent down on one knee and said the one thing I had wanted to hear from him for two years, “Suzie, will you marry me?”

My entire body felt numb as a rush of emotions burst forward. I cried instantly and shouted, “Yes! Yes, yes, yes!” He swept me into his arms and slid a dazzling ring on my finger. I glanced to the left and noticed a beautiful table covered in flowers and glowing in candlelight. The most amazing night of my life had just begun.

The night of incredible surprises continued as I learned Rich had secretly packed overnight bags and rented a beautiful suite. He decorated it with calla lilies, my absolute favorite flower. To top off the night, there were three bottles of Moet to enjoy for our intimate celebration. It was incredibly surreal; I felt as if I were in a fairytale. It was just the beginning of our happily ever after.

Romance in Central Park: October 17, 2010

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Central Park, NYC Engagement Portrait

The Big Day: St. Patty’s weekend on March 19, 2011

Candles and flowers set a romantic tone on their wedding day.  Both of their families are Irish so they wanted to make sure they included special Irish wedding traditions, which is why they choose St. Patty’s Day weekend.  It’s tradition at an Irish wedding to have bagpipes and kilts as bagpipers pipe lucky brides and grooms into their ceremony.  They had the Irish Band Inchicore from Boston and Rich’s sisters and other family members did a traditional Irish Step Dance for all our wedding guests.  Rich’s uncle from Limerick surprised them and sang two songs with the band.   Everyone loved these special touches.

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“Everything we do we do with a smile.  We love laughing at each other and making jokes just to hear each other laugh.  We are always coming up with new funny nicknames for each other as well.  Rich has an amazing ability to bring me up with laughter whenever I am down about anything.  In five years from now I see us happily married with at least one child living life to its fullest.”  Suzie

People have asked if I was that same wedding photographer on Lansdowne Street.  I wasn’t… but I was sure glad they picked me!


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Teri - 06/28/2011 - 1:27 pm

What a gorgeous wedding! I really love the composite image of the groom and cigar,,fabulously done! Stunning photography Natalie,, 🙂

Michelle Amarante - 06/28/2011 - 2:13 pm

What a sweet story!! And the photos… *sigh* just gorgeous!!

Samantha Brown - 06/29/2011 - 6:01 am

Fabulous photos!the whole feel of the day comes across. Lovely!!

Suzie Benn - 06/30/2011 - 9:29 am

You are amazing and so very talented Natalie! Thank you for capturing every moment of our special wedding day. We can not wait to work with you again!!

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