This wildly romantic engagement session at the Jerry Fritz Linden Hill Gardens is the perfect illustration of a couples blossoming love. John and Amanda are seemingly the perfect match, and their undeniable adoration for one another can be felt through every photograph. The gloomy weather on this day was no match to this couple and their photographer’s illuminating spirit! Every vibrant detail and enamoring moment was brilliantly captured by Renee Nicolo Photography amidst the beautiful landscape of blissful greenery.
From the Photographer, Renee Nicolo Photography: “Oh my goodness! John and Amanda absolutely ROCKED their engagement session! I’m so excited to share this one with you! As we were planning when to schedule their engagement session, we thought it would be best to wait until the flowers were in bloom!! April – you did not disappoint! Before their session, I was determined to find the BEST location, and I stumbled upon Jerry Fritz Linden Hill Gardens in Ottsville, PA! Score! I had never heard about the gardens before, and now it’s my favorite place to visit. You HAVE to go visit if you’ve never been before (I’ve been telling everyone about the gardens since the engagement session). When I shared the location with Amanda and John, they loved it!
Leading up to their session, the weather seemed to be a little unpredictable, but Amanda and John were absolutely relaxed through it all! I was so grateful for their patience as we were trying to navigate the weather! We decided to do their shoot first thing in the morning to dodge the rain. Prior to their arrival, I was walking around the gardens (location scouting of course), and there was a bit of drizzle. Then when Amanda and John arrived all of the rain absolutely STOPPED! Woohoo! I was BEYOND excited. For a straight hour a drop didn’t fall from the sky, and we were able to get so many portraits just before it started to rain again!”
How They Met:
“From one of their very first dates on, Amanda knew that John was the one for her.
He had gone with something a little unconventional, something she admired, and invited Amanda to a Memorial Day soft-ball game and picnic in FDR Park, with his wing-man Steve in town. Aside from discovering how non-athletic Amanda was, John came to several other conclusions that day, one being that he would prefer to spend the day on the bench with her rather than out on the field. This day ended up being one of their favorite memories! They laughed, and threw the football around, they ate hot-dogs, and made jokes at each others expense. By the end of the day they both knew they had found something special, and that just maybe they had found something perfect in each other.
Fast forward to a couple of dates later, John invited Amanda to join him for the weekend to meet some of his family while they vacationed in Cape May. Amanda was SO nervous!! She soon came to find out that meeting “some” of the family, actually meant meeting his parents, brother and sister, nephew, aunts, uncles, and cousins all in one shot. But there was a certain ease about it. John was by her side, and John’s family was SO welcoming that the nerves quickly faded away, and they were able to relax and enjoy their weekend down the shore. They drank coffee on the porch by day and stayed up late, wrapped up in a blanket on the sand, by night. Cape May quickly became their favorite spot, and go-to getaway destination!”
“When the timing was right, John asked both his parents and Amanda’s parents for their blessing, something that still makes Amanda tear up!! (Oh my goodness – how sweet??!!) It was really important to both of them that their parents were on board, and fully supported them. John had started planning, and was busy picking out rings, all unbeknownst to Amanda who was busy looking at houses and figuring out their next move. It came as no surprise to Amanda when John suggested an escape to Cape May in August after a summer jam packed with parties, weddings and overflowing weekends.
At first she was excited about the trip, but as the date approached, it took a little more convincing. Unexpectedly they both wouldn’t get out of work until late that Friday, the weather forecast was iffy, and who was going to watch Breyer (the spoiled rotten labradoodle)? All of these unknowns were putting the weekend in jeopardy, not to mention the looming weather report for the sandy beach proposal John had planned. But, somehow, someway, the stars aligned and John got Amanda in the car, and on the way to their weekend excursion!!”
“First stop, Willow Creek Winery, a place that they had visited numerous times with family and friends! Amanda and John love the wine and the food there (just ask them about it!) but above all else they love the atmosphere. Acre after acre of grape vines, where guests are encouraged to grab a bottle and sit on an Adirondack chair, taking in the smells of summer and enjoying all the beauty the grounds have to offer. They would describe it as feeling like you’ve been transported to a vineyard in some far off country, their little oasis among the coastal sandy shores. Where the sunsets are always beautiful and the wine is always flowing. So, throwing the beach plans aside, it seemed fitting that this would be the place for John to propose!!
With the ring precariously placed in his pocket, John suggested a stroll through the vineyard. Not for a second did Amanda think that this beautiful, serene, perfect place was about to become one of the most meaningful moments of their lives!”
“While they were walking among the rows, John couldn’t help but recall the infamous soft-ball date, and how much they had grown together since then. He knew they were meant to have found each other, and he wanted his best friend to become his wife. Amanda didn’t even realize what was happening until John was fully on one knee, holding a ring up and asking her to marry him. She was so completely overcome with emotion that she forgot to say yes and went right to kissing/crying and burrowed into Johns arms. She didn’t have any words, and they spent the next moments wrapped up in each other!!!
And that is exactly what it was, the perfect moment. In a space that was so close to John and Amanda, and in an intimate setting where they were able to focus on each other. In their eyes it was about as close to perfect as you can get, and Amanda did eventually say YES! The rush of love and support from friends and family following the engagement was overwhelming, only to be surpassed by the amount of love they feel for each other as they move to the next stage of their relationship.”
From the Bride:
“I love that John keeps me grounded. For anyone who knows us they know that I am the talkative, in your face, emotional half of the relationship. John knows how to keep me calm and bring me down to earth a little. We balance each other out perfectly. I also LOVE his handsome dark features, those golden brown eyes are to melt over.”
Engagement Session Inspiration:
“We wanted the engagement photos to reflect the vision we were going for with our wedding which was a little wild and romantic. Our wedding featured tons of flowing greenery and big open flowers, there was every variation of vine and green garden plant you could think of filled with big pink and white peonies, ranunculus, green hydrangeas, etc. so we wanted to find a garden or something that had a similar feeling to it.”