Sarah + Michael’s Air Force Academy + Historic Pinecrest Wedding | Colorado Springs Wedding Photographer

Sarah and Michael were married at the Air Force Academy Cadet Chapel in Colorado Springs.  They met for the first time in the field across from the chapel, where their dog Winston was waiting for a family photo.  I swear this dog was smiling from ear to ear!  (You’ll hear a little more about Winston in Sarah’s comments below.)

As we took wedding photos before the ceremony, the clouds gathered.  Once we ducked safely inside for the ceremony, the rain came down.  Throughout the ceremony, you could hear it beating on the stained glass windows that line the chapel walls.  (I’ve been incredibly blessed this year with the timing of the rain storms this season.)

After the ceremony, we headed over to the Historic Pinecrest in Monument, Colorado for a relaxed reception in historic lodge setting.


-XOXOI asked Sarah to tell me a little bit about Michael.  Here’s what she had to say:

“We ‘met’ online and emailed for about a month before meeting in person at a restaurant in Castle Rock for drinks and appetizers.”“After our first date I remember feeling simultaneously intimidated by his intelligence yet also very comfortable with him because of his down-to-earth demeanor and sense of humor. He also seemed a little odd and goofy, which of course I liked!!”

“One of my favorite dates was our third date. We toured two local wineries in Denver, then went to dinner at a small french restaurant in the Highlands. During dinner it started to snow, one of the first heavy snows of the season, with large and fluffy snowflakes. In a matter of minutes the evening was turned into a winter wonderland – it was so romantic!” “The two most attractive things about Michael are his compassion for other people and his intelligence. I really admire both of these traits!”“We had talked about the timing of getting married, so I suspected it was coming soon. He made dinner reservations at a fancy restaurant that night, so I thought it would be then.. I had planned to get all ‘done-up’ in preparation! That morning he convinced me to go for a run around the inner harbor of Baltimore. I rolled out of bed, and with teeth brushed and nothing else, we ran to Federal Hill. Overlooking the inner harbor, he asked if I wanted to sit down on one of the benches to rest. Of course I did, I was so out of breath and dripping in sweat! He got down on one knee and the rest is history. Winston our dog was of course there to celebrate with us!”When asked to share her favorite memories, she said, “I can’t pick just two favorite memories!!”“One of Michael’s ‘quirks’ that I love is his obsession with books. I love how many interests he has and how he always wants to learn more! Although, moving is not fun with so many heavy books…” “One of the sweetest things Michael does for me is love my dog Winston. He was not looking forward to the responsibility of a dog, but he has loved Winston as his own. He has been really sweet with him, from playing with him every day, spoiling him with treats and special foods, and taking him on 2 hour adventures through Baltimore when he has a spare afternoon. And it is clear that Winston has fallen in love with Michael too!”“I respect Michael’s work ethic. I have never heard him complain about having to work too hard or have too much to do, even through medical school and the military. He is excited about learning new things with every chapter of his life, and I really admire this!”“I admire Michael’s steadiness. He isn’t dramatic, just steady and loving.”“I think he always knew he impressed me…”“I am excited for all of our future adventures together. Life won’t be boring, and I’m looking forward to what life has in store for us!”“I am the lucky one in our relationship because no matter what is going on, Michael responds to me with love and acceptance. I am so blessed to love him!”I asked Michael to tell me a little bit about Sarah, and here’s what he had to say:

“The first time I saw Sarah was also our first date. We met at a small restaurant in Castle Rock. I think I arrived at least an hour late due to an accident on I-25, but she waited for me. She was patient and persistent then and continues to be so today. When I saw her, I was nervous and fearful of being reprimanded for being so late, but she was glowing and beautiful and it immediately calmed me down.”“We got to know each other before meeting for the first time by chatting online. She was finishing her master’s degree and I was teaching at USAFA. Every time I got a message from her a smile would come to my face, and it would brighten my day. I remember liking the fact that she used plenty of smiley faces in her messages.” “We met at a small restaurant in Castle Rock. I think I arrived at least an hour late due to an accident on I-25, but she waited for me. She was patient and persistent then and continues to be so today. When I saw her, I was nervous and fearful of being reprimanded for being so late, but she was glowing and beautiful and it immediately calmed me down.” “On one of our first dates we went wine tasting at local wineries around Denver and then settled in for a cozy meal of hand-made charcuterie and beef bourguignon at a restaurant in the Highlands as some of the first snow flurries of the season drifted down outside. The wine was lusher and the restaurant all the warmer for the perfect company.” “When she interacts with others she is not always the loudest or proudest, but she brings her whole heart to the table. She is graceful and giving of herself.”“On our first road trip together we went to Taos. We walked around the art district, visited and dreamed of owning an Earth ship, sampled green chile beer and tasty, cheesy, jalapeno bread, and stayed in a cozy cottage for a weekend.” “Clearly, hiking the incline together was also a memorable experience (at least for me). Sarah says she hates it, but somewhere she must have a sweet spot for it (or she must really love me) because she did agree to do it the day after the wedding as well. She was determined enough to make it up on her second trip, and then there were the times I tried to do it twice in the time she took to do it once, but overall it was much more fun doing it with her than racing her.”“On our weekend in NYC/Brooklyn, we had heavenly pizza and tasty meats to eat. We had a jazz night and saw James Levine conduct at the Met. If only we’d got that bubble tea…”
“When we were first dating she surprised me by pulling out a pint glass with a bicycle print…just a few weeks before we had passed by a store front and I had made a comment on how I had liked it. We kept walking, but she went out of her way to go back and surprise me with the purchase.”Michael says he really loves “The way she says ‘sandwich.’”“It is the little things she does for me every day that mean the most for me. Little kisses and hugs, helping with the dishes, cooking a meal, or wishing me luck on a test. It is nice to be supported by someone so caring.”Michael respects, “How loving and giving she is of herself. Yet at the same time she will stick to her guns when she needs to do so.” “I’ve mentioned it a few places already, but Sarah is extremely kind and loving. If I had to add another trait on to that it would be her dependability. She is someone you can count on to be there when you need her.” I asked when Michael knew Sarah was the one? He said, “I can’t trace it to one exact moment; I’d say I was pretty sure in the first few months, and the curve was exponential from there.” Michael says he’s most excited to marry Sarah because, “She said she would keep me supplied with broccoli, blueberries and unsalted nuts.”
He says he’s the lucky one in this relationship because, “She is crazy enough to try to keep me supplied with broccoli, blueberries and unsalted nuts.”


Ceremony Venue: United States Air Force Academy Cadet Chapel

Reception Venue: The Historic Pinecrest

Day of Coordinator: Deb Hartman, Air Force Academy Chapel Day of Coordinator (only for ceremony portion)

DJ: AJ Carlisle of Celebrity DJ

Bride + Bridesmaid Bouquets & Table Centerpieces: Jan Proett (step mother)

Boutonnières, Flower Girl Baskets and Junior Bridesmaid Bouquets: Stacey’s Bloomers

Caterer: Rocky Mountain Catering

Cake: Creative Cakes by Carol

Event Rentals: The Historic Pinecrest (all included with reception fee)

Officiant: Rev. John Tobian (family friend)

Hair: Lisa with Soluxe Salon

Makeup: Jessica Proett, sister

Dress Boutique: The Bridal Collection

Dress designer: Justin Alexander

Bridal Shoes: Beholden Bridal Etsy Store

Earrings: Lane Mitchell

Headpiece: Twigs and Honey

Bridesmaid Dresses (Steel Blue): David’s Bridal

Groom’s Tie, Groomsmen’s Bow Ties, and Cummerbunds: Bird Dog Bay

Invitations: Zazzle

Wedding Favors: Tea Wedding Favors: Harney and Sons; and Tea Pigs

Bride’s Ring: Tiffany & Co.

Groom’s Ring: Nelson Coleman Jewelers


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