Out of any 250+ weddings I (Joel) have photographed, there has never been one I have been waiting for and hoping for like this one.  In fact, I was waiting and hoping for this wedding to come even before Rebekah and Alrick had even met each other. I have known Bekah for over 20 years, and since before I could drive a car, she was like a little sister to me. I can honestly say there is possibly no one that I am not related to or married to that I hold in higher esteem than I hold her. Of the many people I have known throughout my life, she is a jewel among gems. When she moved to Washington D. C. to pursue her government career, I was hoping she would meet someone amazing.  (fun fact: I was one of the people who did a background check interview when Bekah was going for her initial government clearance. I actually believe she is a secret CIA Agent and my interview was for her top-secret clearance, but don’t tell her that I figured it out).

Things might have taken a wee bit longer than many of us were hoping, but I clearly remember the first time I saw a photo of her and Alrick. Right away, I knew…this was the guy. Maybe it’s that imagined sense that sort-of-brothers have when seeing their sort-of-sister with a suitor, but you usually get a gut instinct in a moment. I know that was how I felt when I first saw and met my actual sister’s now-husband. I felt about Alrick what I felt about my brother in law…I liked him instantly and truly believed he was the right man. When I met him in January of this year at my birthday party, I knew I liked him even more than I thought I would. This was a good man. I could not wait for their engagement to come, and when it finally came…we were thrilled.

He proposed 1 year and 6 months after they met, on 2/11/18.  He took Bekah down to Old Town Alexandria, next to the Potomac River.  He told her that he wanted to get down there before sundown to test a new lens for his camera (classic photographer excuse…just ask Shannon) and take a few pics.  He set up his camera on the tripod, and though she didn’t realize it at the time, he had started recording a video.  Bekah also didn’t realize that he had brought a speaker with him, but when “I Had the Time of my Life” come on, it confirmed her suspicions that he might be up to something.  The two of them had watched Dirty Dancing on their 6 month anniversary and danced to it in his living room…it became their song. He got down on one knee and proposed down on a dock by the water.

When the day came for their wedding, we hopped on a plane to head to Washington D.C.  The wedding was at the gorgeous Whitehall Estate in Northern Virginia, and it was such a perfect place for their wedding. Even though we were working and needing to focus on that, it was still fun to be with friends who also traveled there to celebrate with the two of them. It was such a perfect day, and we were so very honored to be there and to be a part. We love you both, and we cannot wait to see what amazing things are in store.