GSS Featured Engagement :: James & Stephanie’s Outdoor Engagement :: Shaun Menary Photography

Today’s featured engagement comes from one of our sweet readers, Stephanie.  She’s the Bride to Be in this feature!  We LOVE it when our readers submit their photos to us for a feature!!! Shaun Menary, of Shaun Menary Photography documented their engagement beautifully. Shaun is a Dallas/Fort Worth, Texas based wedding photographer.  Stephanie and James will be married on January 28, 2012 in Dallas.  Stephanie was kind enough to answer a few questions for us:

 How did you and James meet? We met at a happy hour that was planned by a mutual friend who wanted to introduce us.  One by one, each of our friends left and it ended up being just he and I talking over margaritas and beers. In the end he asked for my number and asked me out thevery next day.

How long did you date before the proposal OR How long have you been together?  James and I dated for 7 months before he proposed. I had no doubt he was the one after our very first date.

Have you set a date yet?  Our wedding date is January 28, 2012. We decided on this date because his birthday is the 28th of November and mine is the 28th of July.  This way we will always be celebrating on the 28th.

Have you picked your venue?  If so, what made you choose this location?   We will be married at the Episcopal Church of the Transfiguration and the reception will take place at the Hilton Park Cities. My family has been members of Transfiguration since 1990 and I attended elementary school there.  Like most little girls, I always dreamt of marrying the man of my dreams in the church that I grew up in. We knew that we wanted to have the reception at a hotel that was close to where we live and play. We love the intimacy of the Hilton Park Cities. There are only 224 rooms and one banquet room. There is also a great space for a cocktail hour when the guests first arrive which will help get the celebration started. 

At what point did you know that he was “the one”? I knew it from the start. He made me dinner on our first date and after dinner we sat on the back porch and talked for hours. We talked about our families, hobbies, passions, hopes and dreams. I knew that God had always planned for me to be there with him in that moment.

Besides getting engaged, what is your favorite memory as a couple?  One reason that I knew that he was the one, is that no matter what the circumstance, we always make the very best of it and just enjoy being together. I have so many favorite memories but one memory that stands out is from last January. We went skiing in Tahoe for New Year’,s. James loves to be outdoors and skiing is one of his favorite things to do. As a kid, I used to love to ski but I hadn’t been in almost 10 years.  The first day I had made an appointment to take a half day lesson to get my ski legs back.  There was a horrible storm that day and they closed the entire mountain.  Since we only had a few days of skiing the next day I decided to forgo the ski lesson and jump on a lift with him.  He offered me some pointers at the top of the first mountain and then we were off.  He was so patient with me the whole day. It was absolutely an amazing day.

How did he propose? We had planned a trip to San Francisco.  When we arrived at the hotel we were too early to check in- So he told me I needed to change because we were going to go on a bike ride.  Once we had our bikes we headed to Crissy Beach.  When we got there, James suggested that we leave our bikes and go down to the water to take some pictures.  The next thing I knew he was down on his knee. It all happened so fast! I said yes and jumped into his arms.  Seconds later he told me there was another surprise and his brother and his wife came running out of their hiding spots popping a bottle of champagne. He had flown them in from San Diego and they had been following us since we arrived and documented the whole event.  We spent the rest of the day with them following us around the city taking pictures and enjoying the moment. I felt like the absolute luckiest girl in the whole entire world!

Were you surprised?  I was very surprised!! He did such a wonderful job of planning and keeping everything a secret until the very last second.  I could not have dreamt a more perfect day in a more perfect way!

What made you choose Shaun Menary as your photographer?  I had several friends recommend photographers and I did a lot of research on the internet.  For us, the perfect photographer needed to have more than an amazing portfolio.  The rapport with our photographer was equally as important as the end product.  When we met Shaun Menary there was an instant vibe! We both felt an immediate unspoken connection to Shaun.  In the end, we knew that we could trust him to capture the memories of our wedding exactly how we had always wanted.  It is a tall order to fill, but we are confident that he is the man for the job!

Thank you so much, Shaun, for sharing this amazing wedding with us!  Please stop by his website and blog and show him some love!  And thank you, Stephanie, for taking your time to answer our questions!  We wish you and James a lifetime full of love, laughter, and happiness!!!  May every day be better than the last!

If you have an engagement, wedding, day after, or anniversary session that you would like featured- Please send it to us at  We HEART submissions!

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