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Romantic Sunset Engagement Session at Garden of the Gods

January 10, 2018

I got to hang out with Drue and Kelly just a few days ago, and it was our last engagement session of 2017 and I couldn’t have picked a better couple to celebrate that with. We walked around Garden of the Gods for their romantic sunset engagement session, and I showed them my favorite not-so-secret-anymore spot, and we watched one of the most intensely golden and beautiful sunsets of the year together. We laughed about Randy’s lack of love for Star Wars (which none of us understand), the Defenders series from Marvel on Netflix (and how you gotta watch Jessica Jones, Iron Fist, Luke Cage and Daredevil before you watch the Defenders), and of course – their upcoming wedding!

These two met a little over five years ago while they were both living near Shanghai (yep, in China!). Through the luck of having a mutual friend, they met on a random night out on the town, but it wasn’t until a few months later at the Great Wall Music Festival that they realized each other was something more than just a friend. Then finally, after a few years ago, Drue proposed to Kelly on a hot Texas summer day! It’s a pretty awesome story, so I’ll let Kelly tell you how the proposal went down, so I don’t miss any of the details:

“One thing you have to know about the two of us is that we are completely incapable of passing up a cheap plane ticket to China. After Kelly was accepted into med school (yay!!!) she bought a $500 roundtrip ticket to China for a late May/early June trip to explore some new places and also catch up with some friends and family in Beijing and Shanghai. Meanwhile, Drue had a few weeks to put the final touches on a project that he had started a year previously when he discovered the O’Brien’s family photo collection. What better way to deal with missing someone you love than to make a proposal photo album for them with adorable childhood pictures? Now there is some debate as to whether Kelly saw all of this coming, because it was supposed to be a surprise after all, and Drue was hoping that Kelly was too busy thinking about her trip to China when they went ring shopping the week before she left…but either way the date was set and all we needed was for Kelly to arrive back in the States. Early morning on June 13th Drue picked her up from the airport and, bowing to her wishes to immediately start the fight against jetlag, took her to the Houston Arboretum for a picnic stroll, featuring our favorite picnic food – homemade chicken salad croissants. Well Houston can be a bit hot around that time of year (sweat never hurt anyone), but luckily Drue had prepared for all eventualities. Eventually the two sat down on the wooden bench that afforded the best view of the lily pond and exchanged presents, namely a custom engraved keychain with Drue’s Chinese name and the aforementioned photo album. Kelly wasted no time in flipping through the album pages and about halfway through Drue had the glaring realization that “oh my god this is actually happening!” It was right about then that a herd of 30 or so cacophonous school kids clutching fishing poles and frog nets in their hands burst onto the scene. So much for being prepared… As Kelly turned to the last page of the album which bore the special date of June 13, 2017 and Drue swung off the bench to get down on one knee, the world shrunk down and even the horde of Indiana Jones-pretenders ceased to exist. Needless to say that the field trip chaperones could not cover all 60 young eyes from the consequent embrace after Kelly said “yes!”

And there we have it, haha! Now Randy + I are so counting down for their upcoming wedding at Trappers Lake Lodge!!!

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Randy and Ashley Durham are adventure wedding photographers in Colorado, available for sessions in 2018 in Colorado are and nationwide.

Be sure to check our travel schedule for upcoming visits to your area! 

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