Snap weddings


• • est. 2005 • •

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Liya and Ben’s Castle Hill Wedding

September 9, 2015

By Mariah Ashley


I’ve been eager to blog Liya and Ben’s Castle Hill Wedding. They were married in July and have been patiently waiting for their debut!

Like most of our weddings, when I arrive I start with a photo of the rings. Liya’s ring is a special favorite. The prongs on the front of the ring are actually the fingertips of a starfish, when you flip the ring over you can see they sea creature on the other side, diligently hoarding the diamond. I love the uniqueness of this ring, which is perfect considering that Liya is who she is… more on that in a minute.

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The first time we met Liya we fell head over heels in love with her. If I had to choose one word to describe her that word would be effervescent. Good one right? {And I spelled it right straight out of the gate!}

adjective: effervescent
(of a liquid) giving off bubbles; fizzy.
vivacious and enthusiastic.
Yep! That’s Liya to a T, and that’s why she has 9 bridesmaids and 1 bridesman. Once you get a taste of the bubbly, you’re left wanting more! I follow Liya on Instagram and it seems like every week there’s a new photo of her and 20 girlfriends on some wild adventure. I want to comment, #take me!  I think that might be creepy and awkward, so I will just live vicariously through her fun girl adventures!

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So what kind of man would be deserving of such an effervescent girl? A true blue steadfast man like Ben.

adjective: steadfast
resolutely or dutifully firm and unwavering.
“steadfast loyalty”
The way that Ben looks at Liya makes every girl in the room jealous, no matter how nice there husbands are.
I was also struck by how many people commented on how well regarded Ben is, adored by his friends and family and admired in his medical profession.

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These two… completely in emotional sync on opposite ends of Newport.

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Meanwhile, a gang of very rowdy, very jubilant friends gathers to support Liya and Ben at their Castle Hill wedding… via trolley of course.

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Ben arrives at Castle Hill with a few moments to spare before the first look, so why not a quick game of corn hole?

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We set up Liya and Ben’s first look in the garden where it’s nice and shady, beautiful, and private.

I’ve never seen such an enthusiastic first look. Liya nearly bubbled right out of her skin when Ben turned around. I got goosebumps from head to toe watching them. {There I am being awkward and creepy again}.

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This is surely what true love looks like.

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Ben and Liya come from wonderful families. They’re the pride and joy of their parents.

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The beautiful bouquets are by Stoneblossom. Liya is wearing Maggie Sottero and her hair and makeup is by Jennie Kay Beauty.

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The beautiful chuppa at Liya and Ben’s Castle Hill wedding underneath the amazing blue summer sky. The tradition of the chuppa has a lovely history. The chuppah represents a Jewish home symbolized by the cloth canopy and the four poles. Just as a chuppah is open on all four sides, so was the tent of  Abraham open for hospitality. Thus, the chuppah represents hospitality to one’s guests. This “home” initially lacks furniture as a reminder that the basis of a Jewish home is the people within it, not the possessions. In a spiritual sense, the covering of the chuppah represents the presence of God over the covenant of marriage.

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An informal photo with the rather large bridal party.

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Ben and Liya meet with their rabbi to sign the ketubah.

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This is my favorite part, the veiling ceremony, always a beautiful moment.

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I love that both parents walk the bride and groom down the aisle. So sweet!

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Toddlers are unpredictable. The chances of a flower girl making it down the aisle with a basket of flowers, slim to none. The flower girl making it down the aisle with a bubble mower? Odds are in your favor, for sure.

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Look at that face! So happy to be making Liya his wife!

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adjective: reciprocal
given, felt, or done in return.

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Such a fun view of the ceremony. I stood in position here because unlike most ceremonies where the bride and groom kiss and come back down the aisle, Liya and Ben were going to invite everyone to join them under the chuppa… in essence the guests would…

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Rush the Chuppa!

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After lots of kissing and hugging from their guests, Liya and Ben stole away for a quick trip to the lighthouse.

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There’s literally no end to the sweetness. Being around Liya and Ben makes you realize that settling for less would be pointless.

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Heading back to the party…

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The photo on the left really demonstrates the kind of people that Ben and Liya are. They hand wrote love notes to each of their 220 guests and tucked them into each of their place settings. In my 18 years photographing weddings, I’ve never seen anyone do this. It’s above and beyond thoughtful.

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And they’re also entertaining!

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Grammy in the hot seat. 🙂

FYI, No grammies were harmed in the making of this photo.

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Taking a spin with mom and dad, so cute.

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The end! I love this photo, I love that Liya and Ben could be the center of attention all day, cater and attend to their 220 guests and still really only have eyes for each other.

Castle Hill Wedding0029Liya and Ben, we truly wish we could photography your Castle Hill wedding all over again. Being part of your day was a joy and an honor. In the words of Fleetwood Mac, “You make Loving Fun!”

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