Nathan and Madi

Life is full of challenges that weigh upon us heavily. So when life presents you with cause for celebration, it’s one of my greatest joys to lock down this precious time in portrait. These celebrations become compasses, pointing us back to us at our best, when it feels like we are needing a reminder. It feels as though we are locking down part of a couple’s foundational legacy. That’s just what we did for former JDP senior Nathan and Madi.

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Blog followers likely recognize Nathan as one half of the Barber twins who I created senior portraits for a few years ago. Post graduation, Nathan headed to the University of Northwestern Ohio which specializes in programs to earn AA and Bachelor degrees in the trades. This is where he met his future bride Madi.

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There’s a lot of jokes about this generation of young adults who can’t figure out ‘adulting.’ Well, that couldn’t be further from the truth for Nathan and Madi. Nathan has earned 2 AA degrees and his CDL. Madi has just finished her medical office management AA. Nathan and Madi have bought a house together. It’s actually the home that originally belonged the Madi’s great grandparents and the one that Madi grew up in.

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Nathan and Madi live in Ohio now so we had their pre consult planning meeting via FaceTime. As we vision cast, I asked, “is it important to you to be back at your Mimi’s farm or are you cool to create your outdoor segment here on studio grounds?” Nathan thought about it for a moment and said, “It’s important to do this at Mimi’s.” I remember the Barber Mimi who was all hands on deck to help provide us anything we needed when we created years ago there. Same was true this time and Nathan’s sister, current JDP senior Katelyn was there to help and provide comic relief as well!

The memories the Barber kids have made at their Mimi’s property was a major shaping influence on their lives. When I saw this rocky area leading down to a stream, I just knew Nathan must have played in this stream hundreds of times as a child.

I asked Nathan at his view and choose, “did you play in that area a lot as a kid.” He said, “oh yeah, I’d spend the whole day down there all the time.” How cool to see the connection of his childhood memories to his young adult life just taking off.

Madi and Nathan inherited two yellow labs when they bought their house, Ralph and Jaeggar, but decided that three was the perfect number for them…for now anyway! So here’s where Waylon enters the scene, an adorable chocolate lab! He was a hoot just lapping up all the attention! Waylon is actually related to Madi’s yellow labs–which is why they are now called Uncle “Uncy” Ralph and Grandma Jaeggar!

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Nathan wanted to be sure his Mimi’s house stayed in the final portrait crop along with the bell, which came from his grandparents farm originally.

Madi and Nathan are just adorable together! They originally met when one of Madi’s friends took her to a party for Nathan’s 20th birthday. She caught Nathan’s eye immediately. He hit her up after the party and she left the text unread for a week. Nathan was undeterred and proceeded with plan B. He made plans with friends and reached out to their mutual friend and said, “make sure Madi comes with you!” Madi did indeed come and that was the start of their beautiful love story.

Kudos to Nathan for his persistence because it certainly paid off! Nathan knew after their first date that Madi was the one for him. Fast forward to today and their wedding is planned for Oct 28 of next year!

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Nathan’s mom Kim was a behind the scenes magician who helped to bring everything together for the long distance couple. She made arrangements to rent this vintage truck which was a very special addition to their session. The icing on the cake for the truck was including Waylon in it. The vintage appeal of this truck is quite the contrast to Nathan’s massive modern truck! And although Nathan is pretty country roots kind of guy, apparently by their small town in Ohio standards, he is all East coast! As Madi likes to remind him of in jest regularly!

I love a strong contrast in portrait story telling and boy do these trucks provide that! Makes me wonder if these trucks are representative of the unique personalities Nathan and Madi each bring to this love story they are writing? The laughter and love sure flows freely between them and it is a joy to behold! I wish you dear ones all the best and may the Lord smile on your union and bless it all the days of your life!

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