Where can I even begin when it comes to this incredible wedding at The Manor House (Littleton, Colorado)?! First of all, I was INCREDIBLY honored from the very beginning when Caitlin literally moved the wedding date from when they wanted to have it just so I could be there to capture it. I mean, come on!! Secondly, The Manor House is legitimately my new favorite venue I have EVER gotten to photograph a wedding at – you’ll see why as you scroll through!
Caitlin is my older sister’s best friend from high school and we have become close over the last few years as well through our shared obsession with the Enneagram/all things self-awareness and improvement, as well as our passion for creative business ownership. I’ve had the pleasure of taking personal brand photos for her a few times too and I seriously have no words that could do this girl justice. She is one of the most kind, gentle-hearted people I have EVER met and an absolute GEM. Not to mention she is an incredible graphic designer/business boss and has been so inspiring to me in my own journey of entrepreneurship!
Now, on to Steven. I had only met him briefly before their big day, but even from everything Caitlin had told me about him, I knew he was so so good for her and spending time with him at their wedding confirmed that fact. Caitlin had recently ended a six-year-long relationship when they met and felt overwhelmed at the prospect of dating again. In fact, she made a desperate (and wildly unrealistic) plea to God that He would just drop the man she was meant to be with right into her lap so that she wouldn’t have to “date around.” After coaxing from one of her best friends, she reluctantly worked up the courage to try out a dating site that claimed to match you based on compatibility. She was instantly inundated with options, none of which really felt right — until she got a message from Steven. “Happy Wednesday!” The second she opened it, she smiled. They started speaking and Caitlin instantly felt at home with him — like he was the (handsome) best friend she got lucky enough to fall in love with. Two weeks later they went on their first date, and as the saying goes, the rest is blissful history.
Keep reading for more about their story and you can find some vendor shoutouts at the end!
THE PROPOSAL STORY:
It was Steven and Caitlin’s 3-year “Dateaversary.” It fell mid-week, Caitlin was working, and plans hadn’t really been discussed — so when Steven suggested a midday hike, Caitlin gave him non-commital “yeah, maybe!”
After chipping away at her client work for a few hours and realizing the beautiful day was passing them by, Caitlin gained new resolve and decided to take Steven up on his hike idea. He suggested Castle Rock, their new town’s namesake. Once they got to the top and realized you couldn’t actually access the summit without doing some serious climbing, Steven suggested that Caitlin pause to grab some water for the dog.
She opened the backpack Steven had packed — somehow failed to notice the fancy (and very out of place) champagne bottle — and went straight for the water bottle. Steven, who had planted the champagne bottle as a “trigger” for the proposal, stood there patiently while Caitlin obliviously filled the dog’s water bowl — then got down on one knee and went straight into a short, sweet proposal.
Caitlin’s answer was an enthusiastic, “Uhm…OF COURSE.”
Steven chose Castle Rock for its symbolism — as he thought about their future together, one verse (and intention) kept coming to mind: “Everyone therefore who hears these words of mine, and does them, I will liken him to a wise man, who built his house on a rock. The rain came down, the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat on that house; and it didn’t fall — for it was founded on the rock.”
Here is how Caitlin describes Steven:
Steven feels like home to me. He is incredibly intelligent, grounded, and attentive. He gives the best gifts, which is a testament to his attentiveness. He does the best karaoke rendition of “Respect” by Aretha Franklin that I have ever heard. I used to think that every relationship was doomed to be hard – but with Steven, it feels bizarrely easy. Even during stressful/crazy/challenging seasons of life, I feel secure. Steven may struggle with expressing his affection and/or romantic feelings sometimes, but I have never felt so genuinely cared for for by someone. His heart shines through in how he chooses to lead his life. He’s my best friend; my person. I love, love, love coming home to him.
Here is how Steven describes Caitlin:
Caitlin is one of the most genuinely kind and caring people I know. She approaches people and her relationships with pure intentions and pure love, absent of bias or judgment. She puts everyone else’s needs above her own, both at home and in her work. She is my peace and my “center.” Just as a brief example of who she is at her core… she owns and runs her own graphic design business and does so quite successfully where others have failed. She is able to do this because not only is she skilled at her craft, but she listens to her clients, she’s incredibly motivated and driven, she’s more organized than anyone I know, and even though she could easily let her work take over her life; she limits her hours and projects so she can focus on me, her family, and her own self care. Where others would get sucked in, she has the emotional and intellectual maturity to set limits and establish priorities for her life/work-life balance.
From day one, Caitlin felt like Steven saw her – really saw her – and deeply appreciated who she was. She said she feels so affirmed, supported, and believed in around him. He never fails to make her laugh with his goofy “dad jokes” and odd noises/sing-songing.
Steven said Caitlin has bettered his life not only by giving of herself endlessly but by encouraging him to be his best self (both by verbally encouraging and by simply being an example to model behavior after). She finds the positive in nearly any situation and, as such, he says that loving her is effortless.
When I asked this sweet couple what they envisioned for their wedding, this was their answer:
“We are really hoping for a laid-back, cozy, “authentic” feel on our big day. We want our guests to feel loved and appreciated — and a little bit spoiled 😉 We’re hoping for good laughs and good quality time with those we love. We imagine it feeling a little bit like a classy/cozy Christmas party”
I can tell you first-hand that a classy/cozy Christmas party describes how their wedding day turned out PERFECTLY.
Huge thanks to all the other vendors for helping make Caitlin & Steven’s big day so beautiful and such a success!
Venue: The Manor House | IG: @themanorhouseco
Wedding Coordination: The Manor House | IG: @themanorhouseco
Officiant: Mark Seevers
Videographer: Marissa Cooper
Bridesmaid Dresses: Alicepub (via Amazon)
Caterer: The Manor House | IG: @themanorhouseco
Hair/Makeup (Bride): Meghan Duncan (IG: @meghanlduncan)
Invitations: by the bride herself! Ember & Co | IG: @emberand.co
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