Jo & Cody’s Beautiful Iowa Engagement Session in the Valley

Goodness.  It is hard to know where to start with the story about this couple!  Jo first contacted me back in July and said she and her fiancé were planning for an October wedding.  She had left a phone number on her contact message and before I called her I googled the area code.  She was in Iowa and I was pretty certain that she didn’t know I was in North Carolina!  As soon as she answered the phone and we started talking I knew this was a wedding I wanted to be a part of.  Jo and I just hit it off immediately and I was so excited about the opportunity to work with her and her fiancé Cody.  The only snag in the whole logistics part of me heading to Iowa was the fact that I needed to find childcare for my two little ones.  Crazily enough I actually told her that it wasn’t going to work out but then my awesome MIL said to me, “Lindsey if you want to go I will figure out a way to stay with the kids.”  As soon as she told me this I texted Jo and we officially booked her October wedding!  

For those of me that don’t know me well, I actually grew up in the midwest and was so excited about returning.  I wasn’t that familiar with where Jo & Cody were in northwest Iowa, but I’ve always loved the midwest and it’s beautiful farm landscape.  Since I was going to be flying out for the wedding we decided to go ahead and have me come out a few days early so that I could do some engagement photos and bridal portraits.  (I’ll share Jo’s bridals in another post).  I flew into Omaha, Nebraska and Jo picked me up from the airport.  Just like I expected, it was like an old friend picking me up!  Conversation was easy and I am pretty sure we talked on our entire 2 hour plus card ride back to her home.  

I arrived early enough (thank goodness for no flight delays) that when we got back at her home she and Cody focused on getting ready for their photos.  Their family immediately welcomed me with open arms and they were incredibly kind and gracious to me during my entire trip.  I actually wanted them to adopt me and come back with me to NC, but I digress lol.    But I do have to say that in general I have found Midwesterners rock and I want to move all of them to NC :).  I am sure they probably prefer to stay put and I move back to Iowa though!

Jo & Cody actually got engaged while they were out riding on a beautiful piece of family property about 20 minutes from the farm where they lived.  So for their engagement photos they wanted to use this same property.  They loaded up their two horses, two dogs and we headed out to the property.  I was in heaven during the entire trip out there and I knew once we started up a hilly road to the property we were going to be able to capture some magical photos.  

Thankfully we had Jo’s mom to help us with the horses and ears (I couldn’t imagine having to get the attention of 2 horses and 2 dogs all by myself!).  I have to admit it was all kind of hectic while we were out there because the wind was blowing like a cyclone through the valley.  A cold front was coming in that night and with the crazy wind we also started feeling the drop in temperature.  I can only imagine what they were thinking on their end.. ie- is she even getting ANY photos?!  Hair was blowing each and every direction and it was definitely chaotic!  But, we pushed through and after we were done with the horses we left them at the trailer and went up to the top of the valley to capture some portraits of just Jo & Cody.  At that point I just in my mind was freaking out about how beautiful the scenery and my couple was to work with.  It was definitely getting colder but it was so hard to have to stop myself from photographing them! They and their 4-legged animals were seriously an absolute dream to photograph.  

Because of the weather conditions we didn’t end up getting the horses to the top of the valley so I recommended that we capture a few more photos of them with at least one horse during Jo’s session the next morning.  We were planning on doing Jo’s bridals then so I figured we would have time for a few more engagement photos!  I am sure glad we did because being on top of the hill was truly amazing!

We took their engagement photos on a Wednesday and I ended up being able to edit a few of them prior to their Saturday wedding.  It was so fun seeing how excited they were about them because like I said before, the conditions we had to work with on the day of did us no favors!  Needless to say we were all happy with the results!  This session and experience will definitely go down in the books as one to remember for a lifetime!  

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