Whether or not you believe in soulmates, my years as a wedding videographer and photographer have shown me that some couples really are just meant to be. The really special ones somehow find each other despite obstacles and distances and in the most unlikely of circumstances. Ashley and Tim are definitely one of those couples.
Ashley grew up in sunny California. Like most young people, she reached a point in her life where she needed a change and decided to go out and find herself. Somehow, she got it into her head that she really wanted to live and work on a ranch. The journey led her to Zion Mountain Ranch nestled in the beautiful peaks of Southern Utah. Ashley didn’t know a soul for several hundred miles, but there was something about this place. She called the ranch and asked if they had any available positions for her. It just so happened that the person who answered the phone was Tim. He took a chance and hired her. Five years later, friends and family gathered at the ranch to celebrate their wedding day.
I can easily see why Ashley fell in love with this place and the people there. The mountains of Zion National Park where the ranch sits boasts some of the most gorgeous scenery around. It’s the unique home to a herd of buffalo that roam the meadows with stunning panoramic views. It is also now the home of a bunch of “reject” animals as Tim affectionately calls them that Ashley has adopted and loved.
Ashley and Tim recited their vows during a sweet, intimate ceremony in front of their closest friends and family… and two horses, a dog and a goat. The moments I captured in their wedding video were so heartfelt and emotional. The bride’s adopted goat can be heard bleating in the background as she cries happy tears. The animals were a big part of the celebration. Their cute dog wore a flower-adorned collar while the goat roamed free around the proceedings. He even nibbled on her wedding dress a little during the ceremony. It was a lovely setting and just right for the two of them.
The bride’s father served as the officiant and married them. He told the story of when Ashley first moved to the ranch. He didn’t like it one bit. His first thoughts were worrying about how he was going to protect his daughter from 450 miles away. Those fears are gone now thanks to Tim. The father of the bride smiled fondly at the groom as he talked about how capable he is, and how he trusts Tim fully to take care of his baby girl.
My favorite part of the ceremony was the ring exchange near the end. Ashley decided that she didn’t want to spend money on a wedding ring but asked for a trailer for her horses instead. Tim decided to buy her a real ring anyway though, so he surprised her by replacing her $4 Amazon ring with something a lot more beautiful during the ring exchange. He thought she deserved better as the “prettiest girl on this side of the mountain.” Her face was priceless! She pretended to be mad as she fought back a grin.
It was an honor to be a part of this amazing wedding day and to capture all of the emotions and memorable moments on video. It was an experience I won’t soon forget.