Lauren & Jake // Smoky Mountain National Park Elopement // Gatlinburg, Tennessee

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Oh man I love elopements! This one was extra special because I got to document my cousin marry the love of her life.

Lauren is only 2 months older than me so we’re basically sisters. Our dads have been best friends since they were 8 years old. It was inevitable that Lauren and I got to spend so much time together growing up. Our weekends consisted of camping, riding four wheelers, creekin, collecting bugs, fishing, and sledding – all the good things you get to do with your dads when they’re best friends and love spending time in nature.

I feel blessed to have such a special relationship with Lauren. Anytime something exciting or special happens to either of us we’re immediately on the phone telling each other all about it. It usually consists of one of us (me) crying. Needless to say I was an emotional mess this whole weekend. There is nothing more special to me than witnessing my cousinsisterbestfriend find true love. She loves hard and I feel at ease knowing Jake loves her the same way.

Lauren, Jake, their moms, myself and my husband Aaron drove down to the Smokies. We took the morning slow – we had breakfast and coffee while I finished up making Lauren’s bouquet and floral crown. We hopped in the cars and drove into the park to find the perfect spot to marry these two off. We were a little nervous because the park closes down often during the winter due to snowy/icy roads but the weather was in our favor that day.

I’ve been to the Smokies many times before so I had a few suggestions as far as location. We hiked up into a mossy, drizzly, chilly forest where Aaron officiated and Jake & Lauren shared their own vows. It was truly perfect.

Congrats Lauren & Jake. I love you to the moon and back.

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