SD roadtrip : personal cedar rapids, ia family & portrait photographer

I just got back the other day from a fabulous road trip to South Dakota with several dear friends, and it was so much fun!
Despite some complications and trying to figure out how this all was going to work,
praise the Lord it all came together, and we couldn't believe it was actually happening when we buckled up in the car. :P
The reason for the trip was that a friend of ours, Emily, was getting married,
and we drove up the day before to do some shopping, etc. and stayed at a hotel,
then attended the wedding the next day and trekked back home!
Despite getting lost several times and making some u-turns, it was an awesome time of rich fellowship and talking/laughing/eating/thrifting/etc.
I love these girls and am always so blessed, sharpened, and encouraged whenever I see them.
Can't wait to roadtrip more with them. ;)
hope you enjoy a peek into my weekend!

first, some instagram photos:
 photo collage.jpg
1. road trip essentials :P
2. Tia, Me, Lilly, & Chelsy getting blown away--it was so windy!!
3. one of us [no names mentioned] thought this nailclipper was really awesome at Target...personally I thought it was weird, but ended up buying it for the girl that loved it just to be funny.
4. the beautiful wedding program
5. the cake at the wedding--go ahead, drool over it. I did.
6. all of us dolled up and ready to attend the wedding!!
7. the delectable cheesecake served at the wedding--so good.
8. late night snackables
9. saw this while driving around in the town we were in--seriously, how sketchy does a bakery thriftshop sound?!
10. we were planning to go shopping at a big mall, but first went to a goodwill and on the way there saw a Plato's Closet...so we went back there and literally spent two hours in that place. In case you were wondering, no we didn't buy all that stuff. :)
11. Driving view on the way home.
12. the classic roadtrip-bathroom-mirror-shot.

the wedding was for Emily Schuurmans, who we've all met through doing Bright Lights conferences together.
some of you may have seen her blog before--Every Thought Captive.
Emily, is one of the sweetest and mature Christian girls, and I couldn't be more excited for her as she begins this new journey in life!
 photo IMG_0477.jpg
first kiss:
 photo IMG_0487.jpg
she looked stunning, and the wedding was beautiful and Christ-honoring...so happy I got to be there!
 photo IMG_0489.jpg
Ben & Emily...
 photo IMG_0500.jpg
us Bright Lights girls : Tia, Lilly, Me, Chelsy & Kelly
 photo IMG_0519.jpg
 with the bride!
how beautiful is her dress?
I loved how the whole wedding and decor was totally her style. 
 photo IMG_0522.jpg
 on the way home, we were planning to stop for a photoshoot, but it was so windy that we weren't going to.
but, then as we were driving through a random little town I suggested maybe stopping...
so we did, and that was probably the best decision on the way home..haha!
so much fun.
Chels, who you've already seen before on this blog.
 photo IMG_0644.jpg
 I haven't seen this girl in over 3 months as her family has been globetrotting with their ministry, so it was awesome to spend so much time with her!
 photo IMG_0650.jpg
Tia...I see this girl every week and she's always such a blessing to be around with her genuine, caring personality.
 photo IMG_0637.jpg
 photo IMG_0633.jpg
 photo IMG_0625.jpg
people always think Tia & Chels are sisters..so we had to get an updated shot of them!
 photo IMG_0620.jpg
 photo IMG_0614.jpg
 photo IMG_0657.jpg
 photo IMG_0660.jpg
 photo IMG_0663.jpg
 Lilly...honestly one of the sweetest girls I know, and she always makes me smile. :)
 photo IMG_0666.jpg
and speaking of smile, she has one that totally lights up her face!
 photo IMG_0678.jpg
 photo IMG_0667.jpg
 photo IMG_0682.jpg
 photo IMG_0690.jpg
It is rare that I'm on the other side of the lens, so huge thank you to Chels for taking these of me!!
 photo IMG_0698.jpg
 photo IMG_0703.jpg
 photo IMG_0704.jpg  photo IMG_0696.jpg
 photo IMG_0528.jpg
 photo IMG_0532.jpg
 photo IMG_0563.jpg
 photo IMG_0573.jpg
 photo IMG_0534.jpg
 photo IMG_0538.jpg
 photo IMG_0543.jpg
 photo IMG_0553.jpg
 photo IMG_0548.jpg
 photo IMG_0592.jpg
 and then things starting to get a little funny...
and we were all doubling over laughing so hard.
 photo IMG_0606.jpg
 we're just all kinds of awesome..
 photo IMG_0589.jpg
 photo IMG_0588.jpg
 see, don't we look absolutely lovely & normal?!
 photo IMG_0590.jpg
 and then we brought out the model faces...
 photo IMG_0607.jpg
 and the perfectly posed + serious angelic faces..
 photo IMG_0610.jpg
and then that ended..haha!
I love the gradient of expressions in this:
 photo IMG_0609.jpg
 thanks for such a totally fun weekend, ladies!!
 photo IMG_0591.jpg
~H. Elise
connect on


  1. it looks like such a fun weekend, sanders! I love all the grams and photos. and oooh. that first B&W one of Lilly is beeeeautiful. love you!

  2. this is the best! i love spontaneous photoshoots so much! :)
    their wedding looks so beautiful. i went and read their courtship and engagement story - such a testimony of God's love and plan for them!

  3. Fun fun! I miss Lilly and Tia (and you) so much! :)

  4. Looks like you had a great time. I would love just to pick up and have a road trip. Such a beautiful bride, beautiful girls, and beautiful memories.

  5. Yay, Hannah! So excited to see these pictures. :) Y'all are so gorgeous - and the pictures are absolutely lovely. Christ-honoring weddings are such a blessing, aren't they?! That one looked beautiful.

    Thanks again for sharing!

  6. Fun to see some of these girls on here after the Bright Light's conference! I'm glad you had a good time! :)


  7. Oh my goodness, I miss Chelsy, Tia... Oh I miss ALL of you!!! And once again, breathtaking pictures, my dear!
    Glad you had so much fun!
    Love you,

  8. Haha Hannah your captions are the best. ;) Love you so much, girl! Thanks tons for sharing these!! :)

  9. why are you all so cute? roadtrips with friends are the best :)) I love all of these photos Hannah! So so lovely!

  10. What a fun trip! The wedding looks beautiful and I love all the photos of you all at the end. :)

  11. Thank you so much for posting these beautiful photos, Hannah!! I've been eagerly waiting to see some photos from Emily's wedding, and I think I squealed when I saw that you posted some (eeeeeeeeeeeeep!! see?)...they're STUNNING (as are you and all the girls)!!!!! So happy you were able to make the trip.

    I LOVE your photography- keep sharing and posting! You're a blessing and inspiration to many. :)


  12. Sounds like you had so much fun! Love the pictures!

  13. Awwwwww! I love these girlies so much. Here's to conference season's swift arrival!

  14. Awesome!! I love your friend's wedding dress...(not to mention the cake!!)

  15. Looks like fun. i'm so glad you got to attend the wedding and share pictures from it. Emily seems like such a sweet girl, and am glad God brought her a wonderful man. It's nice to see you girls all dressed up and taking pictures of each other.

    God bless. Rebecca

  16. Such a sweet post! You described it perfectly! Love you much dearie!!

  17. EPIC-NESS, Hannah!!! oh my goodness....just so fun to relive the weekend again through your post! Its funny to me how we said the same things in our posts but have totally diff ways of saying some of it...and other times we use the exact same expressions. I was thinking when I finished my post that I left out quite a bit....but then again, that was probably fine. Some of it isn't exactly...blog material. =) LOL. I could've written about that 10 minute "extreme-stress" bubble on the way from JoAnns to the wedding location. =) Or about the about 10 speeding tickets that I deserved and didn't get. =) or the feeling of EPIC RELIEF when we actually arrived 15 minutes early!!! or all the "{ } not approved" moments. =) I may post about that sometime anyhow....wow, what good times!! Now we just need Abby to get engaged and we can do it all again. =)
    okay. I'm writing a book.
    but before I go I must tell you thankyou from the bottom of my heart for being rational that day that everything was falling in and I was going crazy and scared you w/ my very wildly speedy phone message. =) I'm forever indebted to you for being calm. =)
    love you...

  18. oh. and gorgemous pictures btw. =)

  19. lovely post, girl. I love how this whole trip worked out.....and you guys' shopping and photoshoot was the bomb. I was just a teeny bit jealous.....but am so glad you all got to do this!!!


  20. Okay, so these pictures are just SO gorgeous! You are all SUCH an encouragement and blessing to me and I'm so thankful for each of you. :) Miss you all and loved seeing these beautiful pictures. It sounds like you made dozens of special memories during the road trip, too. ;) Ah, these pictures are so amazing, Hannah!! And you are all sooo gorgeous, inside and out. :) Blessings!! <3

  21. Baylie, yes! I can't wait for conference season!!!!!!


please leave a comment -- I would love to hear your thoughts on this post!! :)