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  • Writer's pictureElizabeth Schwering

Alisha + Balaji: Wedding Day

To ring in the new year this year, I took New Year's Eve themed engagement photos for Alisha & Balaji. A few months later, we all got together again on the 4th of July to celebrate the two of them coming together as husband and wife! Nothing about their day went according to plan, but they made the best of it and everything still came together beautifully. I started the morning off by meeting Alisha at her parents' house in Covington to document her gorgeous details and the getting ready process. Because of everything going on with COVID-19, Alisha and Balaji couldn't have the bridal party that they once dreamed about, but Alisha was still able to have two close friends come along and spend the morning with her. The house was absolutely beautiful and right down the street from the cutest little park overlooking the Ohio River with a view of the Cincinnati skyline. After Alisha was all ready, we walked down the street to the park to take a few bridal portraits.

After finishing up at the park we headed over to the church for the ceremony. Before COVID-19 hit, Alisha and Balaji had a two day wedding planned with a full Hindu ceremony on Friday, a Catholic ceremony Saturday, and a big reception at Drees Pavilion Saturday night. Unfortunately, Balaji's family couldn't fly in from Singapore so they decided that the best decision would be to postpone the Hindu ceremony until after travel restrictions are lifted and we can all safely spend time together again. To be able to still include everyone, their ceremony was live streamed so that loved ones (like Balaji's parents and Alisha's brother) could still be able to be included in the day. As soon as you walked into the church, Alisha and Balaji had friends handing out customized face masks that were printed with their names, wedding date, and an iconic toilet paper 2020 "just rolling with it" motto. I absolutely LOVED this touch and all of their guests were able to feel comfortable and safe with their matching face masks! Alisha and Balaji also had the most incredible getaway car fully decorated with tin cans and greenery! So much fun!

After the ceremony we took a few family photos (but those are for Alisha and Balaji to share!) before heading up to Drees Pavilion to hang out for a mini reception. They were able to celebrate with a few close friends and family members and spend some time outside on a beautiful July afternoon. They had Snickers Ice Cream Bars & 4th of July Red White & Blue Popsicles. Alisha's dad took over the karaoke mic & sung while others danced in the sun. The cake took a little tumble in the car, but Alisha's bridesmaid helped bring it back to life before Alisha & Balaji cut it in front of the gorgeous city skyline. Alisha & Balaji's dog Billy also came along and brought his cousin pup to model in a few photos. They were both so happy to be included in the celebration and Alisha even made them each their own floral wreath to wear! Alisha kept joking that they pulled this whole day together in about a week after so many unpredictable things came up throughout the wedding planning process, but it still turned into a great day that Alisha & Balaji will treasure forever.

About halfway through the reception, we snuck off to take a few portraits of Alisha & Balaji together. By this point in the day, it was so incredibly hot out but these two were absolute champions. We hiked down a little hill to find this gorgeous spot filled with greenery and I'm so in love with how these photos turned out. Alisha & Balaji started their marriage in the middle of a global pandemic. It's amazing to think that if they can make it through all the changes and guidelines thrown their way while planning a wedding in the middle of everything 2020 has thrown at us, they'll be able to make it through anything together. I hope these photos always remind them to cherish one another and bring them back to the happiness that they share.

Alisha & Balaji, thank you so much for trusting me to capture such a special day for you two. I know that it didn't turn out the way that either of you imagined it to and I know that it was hard not having everyone you loved physically there to experience it with you, but I know that you'll be able to appreciate seeing them again once travel restrictions are lifted and you can finally have your Hindu ceremony and celebration. Congratulations, again!!

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