He took her to see where he grew up 3 years ago, and she knew immediately when she saw the giant redwoods of Northern California that she wanted to get married here. So they returned to Santa Cruz 3 years later to say their vows with just the two of them, his uncle officiating the ceremony and just me as the witness. Though it had rained - and even hailed - just the day before, we lucked out. We started the day with a tearful first look, then continued onto Henry Cowell State Park to see the famous old growth redwoods. It was a place where they had shared memories before, a place that now meant even more to them as they now explored the redwoods as husband and wife.
We then continued onto the coast, where these two popped a bottle a champagne to celebrate and chased the sunset over the coastal bluffs. Though they had never been there before, it so perfectly reminded them of their trip to Ireland, where he had proposed over the Cliffs of Moher. When we climbed back up to the parking area, I knew they hadn't eaten since lunchtime, so suggested popping into an In-N-Out on the way home. They were immediately on board - she claimed to be a "burger gal," and being from out of state, it was most definitely the most California way to grab dinner on their elopement day.
Before I said goodbye, we had one last stop. His grandparents had no idea that they had flown over to California, let alone that this was their wedding day. So they surprised them with a visit coordinated by his family, and it was the sweetest memory getting to see them share this day with the people that meant the world to them. What an incredible way to celebrate in a way that felt so genuine to who they were. Check out the rest of their Henry Cowell Santa Cruz elopement below!