Wide open spaces, you, and your significant other. That’s what the vision was for this photoshoot, and that’s exactly what was accomplished!
“The vision for our engagement session was we wanted something that not everyone else had. We didn’t want a barn, or horses, or a fence line. We just wanted it to be wide open and us. We got lucky because at the start of the shoot the sky was dark and the clouds were rolling in so we got great shots in an overcast sky; before the storm photos. I wore starched jeans and a white lace top with lots of turquoise because I wanted something white and lace but not the traditional “white dress” as you see in a majority of engagement pictures.
“We have always loved the Pendleton Wool Blankets and the array of color patterns so I bought the blanket after Pendleton Cattle Baron’s and sent it to my photographer and told Valerie I wanted to incorporate this into the photos. She had the vision for the settee and to wrap it around us and just highlight that moment of us together and connected.
“While we were changing into our second outfits the storm rolled in so we had to sit in the pickups for about 15 minutes waiting for the storm to pass. After the rain cleared so did the sky and we got the beautiful sunlight and that golden hour glow that I had really wanted for our photos.
“When I wore the Silverado dress I had Jeff wear a white starched cowboy shirt cause I think theres nothing more simple and classic than that. Funny backstory on Jeff’s white shirt; when he was little his horse ran off with him and when he fell he was crying and his parents ran over to pick him up. As his mom tells it, “She swore he had broken a bone or cracked his head” and when they made it to him they could see he had fallen off in a big mud puddle and Jeff was crying not because he was hurt but because his white shirt was ruined.”
“My last outfit was my favorite because I love the color black. A majority of my wardrobe is black because I think its classy and simple. I always like to add pops of color to my outfits and black is the perfect canvas for it. This outfit was our “night out on the town look” and we knew it wasn’t “traditional” in the sense of engagement pictures but it’s us.
“The lighting was working in our favor and we were able to get the “star burst kiss” shot as our photographers called it.
“When planning the shoot, Valerie had sent me a photo from Pinterest of a couple with a champagne bottle and stemware which I loved the idea but we aren’t champagne people, whiskey is more our style. So I packed the Pendleton and glass tumblers for our “celebration” shot. When Valerie and Aubrey sent us the link to our album we were blown away with the shots. We love all of them and they captured our vision perfectly and then some!
“Our love story is a little unorthodox. We grew up 46 miles apart from each other and have always ”known of” each other but never really hung out. I was actually supposed to meet Jeff in 2009 at a concert but our paths never crossed that night, but lucky for us Facebook brought us back together in 2014. We started talking and instantly hit it off. We’ve always thought that we are best together because Jeff is the cool, calm, and collected, to my fiery, hot-tempered, and overly stressed self. When I started dating Jeff I knew he was a package deal, as he had a little boy, who I adored and enjoyed spending time with as well. We welcomed our beautiful baby girl, HarleyJo Matea, on February 22, 2015, got engaged Mother’s Day 2016, and then welcomed our little wild man, Jackson Basil, June 12, 2016. We may not have done things in the correct “order” but we wouldn’t change it for the world. Together we have built a life that we are proud of and one that makes us happy; the true American dream. We ranch, farm, and run the clothing boutique together as a family. It is important to us that we teach our children the value of hard work, integrity, love, family life, manners, communication, and respect for one another. Each day is a new adventure for us as we support each other in our endeavors; somedays we spend all day packaging orders and receiving new products, other times we are at the farm all day, or on the mountain chasing cows. It’s never the same, but each day is an adventure. Sometimes, we are even lucky enough to sneak in a little time away from the kids and go on a date! Our wedding is on September 8, 2018 and we are so excited to finally get married, share the same last name, and become each other’s forever and always.
“Our future plans include building a house on the farm where we can finally have everything in one place. We have spent years driving between Meridian, Idaho, and Jordan Valley, Oregon, that it will be nice to finally have everything in one place and a new house to call “home.” We hope to continue growing Triangle T Boutique (named after Jeff’s family brand), expanding our cattle herd, and raising kids and crops.” -Mary Jo Usabel