Love at Laurel: Lexi + Alex's Marriage Proposal

Love at Laurel:  Lexi + Alex's Marriage Proposal

When Alex had his girlfriend, Lexi, wake up early to hike to Laurel Falls in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, she had no idea what was in store.  Read on about a marriage proposal beside the GSMNP's best known cascade.

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"There was an eerie orange hue to the sky . . ."

"There was an eerie orange hue to the sky . . ."

My photos of the Reed Family of Gatlinburg that were used in East Tennessee Catholic, with a link to the article.  It is a good lesson in gratitude and knowing what is important when disaster strikes.

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Justin + Jenny: a marriage proposal in Cades Cove

Justin + Jenny:  a marriage proposal in Cades Cove

Fortune smiled on Justin and Jenny when the smoke from wildfires cleared and the sun shone when he proposed to her in historic Cades Cove in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.  Come hear the story and see the pictures of my latest proposal to be photographed!

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Far From the Maddening Crowds: Sarah and Trent's Proposal in the Smokies

It's Fall, y'all, and that means that weekends in the Great Smoky Mountains are filled with visitors, looking to feel the crisp air and see the change in foliage.

So where is a young man to find a private spot to propose to his lady love?

And that is where I come in.  I found a spot for Trent that would give him the solitude needed to ask Sarah to marry him.  And you know, the canopy of trees to provide shelter from the rain did not hurt, either.

Let's have the pictures tell the story . . .

Can I get an "Amen!" for love?

Seriously, I really love shooting marriage proposals.  As I drove away from these two lovelies today, I thought how in Southern California, I practiced Family Law and helped couples end their marriage.  As I was reflecting on that, I was listening to Brad Paisley's "Rainin' You" and it was raining.  And I heard the lyrics, "I can't explain it, but I am baptized anew."  And I thought, "Yes - I am so much happier doing this than what I was doing then."  Couples like Sarah and Trent make my heart happy and I am joy-filled to help them start a life together.  Proposals, engagements, wedding:  it's a happier occasion and, heck - there's cake!

Good job with the ring, Trent!

The "after portraits" are always a delight - but then, the glow is still fresh!

A grey day, but in a quiet corner of the Smokies, the warmth and light of this man and woman shone! 

Congratulations to Sarah and Trent!

Halloween Hike to Abrams Falls

On the trail along Abrams Creek

Unfortunately, my Halloween was made sad by the death of our family cat on the day before, so to soothe my spirits, I take to the trails in the Smokies.  I always wanted to see Abrams Falls and figured that although the trip to get to its trailhead would be crowded with leaf peepers through Cades Cove, it was better than staying home to mope.

I got to the trailhead at noon.  The sky was overcast and the temp was 57.  Although there was a long line of cars on the loop, I was surprised to find relatively few people at Abrams Creek.  The trip is 5 miles roundtrip, with only an elevation gain of about 600 feet - not bad.  Despite my old knees, I got back to the parking lot at 2:40 pm, and that included a 30-minute stop at the falls to eat my lunch and kick back.

Click on any image below to see a larger size.

The trail is typical of East Tennessee: roots and rocks.  I did not see any bears - at one point, I heard something big in the brush, only to have a girl walk around the corner and say, "It's okay - it's just my brother taking a pee!"  I occasionally stopped when I was nearer the creek to look for movement by the water, hoping to spot an otter, but did not see one.

I can always tell when I am nearing the trailhead on the way back - I started running into people who had started their hike.  One woman asked me, hopefully, "I'm about halfway there, right?"  

No, ma'am, you're not - but take your time and hike your own hike.

Rest in peace, our Ronnie.  You were loved, little girl.