2021 started off with a photography bang nearly two years in the making.

It was the summer of 2019 when one of the ladies at my Bible study group, Shelly, mentioned that her daughter Kylee was getting married. I offhandedly quipped that I knew a photographer because I'm a shameless self-promoter like that, and sealed the deal over a few text messages. Kylee and her beloved, Caleb, were slated to wed at our church with just their immediate families and Kylee's maid of honor in attendance on New Year's Day, 2020, with a larger reception to follow at one of the local wedding barns toward the end of May. To sweeten the occasion even more, Kylee was going to walk down the aisle in the same dress that Shelly wore when she got married in 1988.

Enter stage left, COVID. Even though Mr. and Mrs. Swan were already wed in the eyes of the Lord and the state of Wisconsin, they still looked forward to celebrating with a larger guest list - and made the difficult decision to postpone until August. Then, when the 'rona didn't let up over the summer, they made an even more difficult decision to cancel altogether when the stress of it all became too heavy. I felt terrible knowing that they hadn't had any photos to commemorate their nuptials, let alone a larger celebration.

Then, Shelly gave me a heads up in November and December that Kylee and Caleb were going to walk down the aisle once again on their first anniversary for a marriage blessing. I don't remember for sure because it was a busy fall and early winter, and I was too lazy while writing this post to scroll through my conversation with Shelly to find out for sure. Naturally, I said yes when asked if I'd be able to make it there with my camera. After a quick blessing by our pastor and a great speech by Kylee's brother (also the best man), we got photos of the couple with their pup, Charlie, before a magical walk through the snow. (If you want to bring animals to any kind of shoot, my answer is always going to be yes.)

Here are some of my personal favorite moments from that afternoon. COVID may have stopped the Swans' plans for a wedding reception not just once, but twice. However, COVID couldn't stop love - and they're still going strong one year later.