Eat Drink Love in Mexico: THE WEDDING

Woke up in my room to a beautiful view.  I took one more stroll around ICON before The Stones dropped me off at the Walmart bus station.  I arrived just in time and found a seat before it got packed.  The bus ride to Sayulita was about an hour, pushing through town traffic before continuing through a more rural route.  A pair of buskers climbed on with guitars and did a rad version of Proud Mary, the ballad in Spanish followed by the wild head shaking portion in English.  The boy had the high voice, the girl had the low voice.  It was pretty cool and I wish I had taken a photo or video, but the bus was crammed and I didn't want to be THAT tourist.

There had been some confusion between texts with Jade prior to my departure.  Technically there was an hour time difference between PV and Sayulita, but our clocks were possibly not in sync.  Anyway, by the time I had arrived there was nobody to pick me up from the station.  No problem. ADVENTURE TIME.  I walked into town and with the itinerary map I had created and was soon put in the quickest direction to the wedding party's headquarters by one of the kind locals.  I came to a crossroads and must have stuck out like a sore thumb as being lost.  I was quickly approached by two generous ladies and their dog who were out puttering around in their golf cart, they kindly offered to help me out.  We got lucky as hell.  The driver managed to figure out which way we were going, but the golf cart's battery died halfway up the winding hill.  I left my baggage with their dead cart and ran up the rest of the way to see if it was indeed wedding headquarters or if I was royally screwed.  After some yelling, a head popped out of the 3rd floor balcony and confirmed I was saved!  I skibbled back down the cobbled path, thanked my tour guides (and tried to pay them off…), and broke a mean sweat hauling my camera bag and roller luggage back up the hill.

Just as I arrived at the front gate, another golf cart pulled up behind me with the videographers, Tomasz and Brian, with whom I would very quickly fall in love.  Super friendly, laid back, and respecting of my shameless showering in full view of people I have never met.  I said HELLO to the girls and fell in love just as quickly with the photographer, Jen.  Sweetest lady with no guard up, easy going, flowing in and out, and really just another one of the girls.  When the fussing was finally over, I jumped into the back of a golf cart with Mr Barcelon, Tomasz and Jen in front.  I don't know how these golf carts don't have a better reputation considering their crazy ability to blast and climb through cobbled streets and up gnarly hills.  I would compare it to riding the Wild Mouse roller coaster at Playland, super sketchy yet super fun.

And I think the wedding speaks for itself…  I cried so many many times.  It was such a gift to be able to witness a wedding with so many raw feelings from people I have known since I was a child.  Sometimes I have to wonder if these post-children weddings are a little more real, because the stuff you gotta push through with kids is definitely a true test of what your relationship is made of!  I remembered to make and pack my own place card which was perfectly located at THE PARTY table.  I only found out that the crazy guy I was sitting beside is the cousin of one of my BFFS, Caela.  Wish I had known so I could have given him a harder time.  The night was filled with tequila shots, margaritas, more tequila shots, limbo, and more tequila shots until they finally rolled out the Taco and Churro Bar.  Notable songs: Mariah Carey's Fantasy and Boyz II Men's I"ll Make Love to You.  Thank you Dorothy, thank you...

Enjoy

Fully Gallery Here

Thank you to Jen + Hugh and Tomasz + Brian for your kindness, encouragement and tips allowing me to shoot throughout this incredible day.

Rob + Jade
CONGRATULATIONS
on making your love official and allowing me to be part of your breathtaking tear-jerking drunk in  love wedding.  i still can't believe 2 of my favourite people from so very long ago have found their happiness in one another.  i love you and your little family so very very much and feel so blessed to be part of your lives.

xo
 


Eat Drink Love in Mexico: Part I

Last Sunday, I booked a last minute ticket to Puerto Vallarta via Los Angeles.  Our family had been invited to the wedding of Rob + Jade.  I met Rob in Kindergarten and became especially good friends with him in the last years of elementary.  Jade, a few years behind, joined our school in grade 4 with the most adorable bangs and bob.  Highschool broke us all up.  While Rob disappeared into VC boy gang life, Jade contributed to me and Kevin's romance (the two ended up at St Pat's), being a carrier for our love letters or saving me a spot on the bus home from LFA to Richmond.  Little did any of us know that the two of them would find happiness in one another and that our lives would be intertwined once again thanks to our firstborns being only 2 months apart, Jade's incredible talent with hair, and ok Facebook.     Funny how having kids pulls you back with old friends!  Must be the primal urge to join in packs and form villages for survival and sanity...

We were excited to visit Mexico for the first time and with our kids whom we knew would love the cultural experience.  As winter approached as did the time to book our tickets.  Kevin had just lost his job and so our plans sadly fizzled out.  A week before everyone would fly out for the big day, I helped to design a few of the wedding stationery items.  Having Jade over to finalize and collect all the product really broke my heart.  Being the sweet understanding guy he is, Kevin pushed me to take the trip on my own while he would stay at home with the kids.  It was a very easy and very tough decision, but it was made.  Malcolm cried in the car as I waved good-bye to him, and I cried as I ran into the airport.  I would have never left my other two kids for that long at such a young age.  Actually, this was my first time going off on my own EVER and I could not have found a better ticket.  My ticket had a 24 hour overlay in LA on the way to and from Puerto Vallarta which meant I could visit my sister in Cali!  In addition, my good friends, The Stones, just happened to be enjoying a 2 week vacation in Puerto Vallarta at the same time.  They generously welcomed me to stay with them upon arrival and before departure to/from LAX.  And right smack in the middle of my visit, I would join the wedding party in their digs at wedding night's end.  Perfect.  

I arrived in LA at 7pm.  We stopped by Forever 21 to grab a hat and sunglasses (I completely forgot to pack my own…) and ordered Italian takeout.  It was a brief visit but such a joy to squeeze my big sister and blast old school HIP HOP down the freeway, just like the good old days when I would fly down to visit her in my pre-family days.  It's been 8 years!

The flight to PVR was FANTASTIC.  I DIDN'T HAVE ANY KIDS WITH ME AND I got to sit in peace with a coffee and a chocolate croissant and watch James Bond Spectre completely undisturbed.  In fact, I didn't even get to see the last minutes of it because the flight was over.  Luxury. 

We landed.  My head was tingling, electric currents seemed to be gently running up and down my arms as I walked through the corridors of PVR to its arrival gates.  I spotted Brock behind the glass and I ran.  I made it!  I was really here!  This was really happening!  I was in shock as we hugged and walked out into the blinding sunlight.  The heat started to sink in and it felt glorious.  We hopped into their Green Ferrari (a tiny little 90's style Chevy) and booted it to their Dad's high-rise condo... 

We headed out to Old Vallarta for dinner.  I sat in the back with the boys, checking out the architecture, the little shops and kids riding in the back of pick-up trucks, palm trees palm trees palm trees.  We parked and walked down "The Seawall", enjoying the warm evening breeze and a fiery sunset.  My diet for 3-4 days was Margaritas/Tequila Shots and Tacos.  I'm still not over it.  We took turns eating and minding the boys.  I took my Margarita in a TO GO cup because I had barely dented it and was already quite tipsy.  We took a walk around town, stopping into a bar that was advertising karaoke.  The boys bravely sang BEAT IT and LAND DOWN UNDER!  Definitely something to cross of their Bucket List!  

This trip was off to a great start…  Next up THE WEDDING!


 

Cinnabar Session No. 3

Cinnabar Sunday Brunch Sessions are back!  I had my heart set on the duck, but after having too much fun with a crazy group of Mamas down in Beach Grove the night before, my belly was aching' for some bacon, well some red meat anyway!  I enjoyed the 10AM slot with Emily + Khara, EM brought her brother and Khara invited a co-worker/friend.  I did not realize I was in for a treat, seeing one of my buddies show up with a pretty lady and a whole bunch of other Vancouver buddies at the Noon slot that I would be shooting.  As usual, it was a delicious feast!  

The Humanagans - Salt Spring Island Wedding

Better late than never, my photographic contribution to The Humanagan Wedding!  I've been friends with Kate-Lynn or KLF since 2008, our friendship blossomed and it's been a wild ride ever since.  She and Miles met just before I gave birth to my firstborn, Moses, I've loved him from the first day they came to visit our new guy.  I gotta say, loving the person that is marrying one of your closest and most favourite friends is definitely right up there as one of THE BEST FEELINGS in life.  We ferried over to Salt Spring to celebrate their big day...

The Humanagans

love you guys to the moon and back
xo