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Jim & Erin – County Line Orchard Winter Wonderland Wedding

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We’re so glad that we got to start the 2012 wedding season off with Jim & Erin!  The love they feel for each other was almost tangible on their wedding day, and couples like them are what make wedding photography so much fun.  We met up with Erin on a snowy Saturday in February at the Protection of the Virgin Mary Orthodox Church in Merrillville, Indiana.  She bounced out of the car, make-up, hair, and veil perfectly in place and excited for her wedding day!

After a few touch-ups, the ladies gathered to help Erin slide into her gorgeous Watters & Watters gown.  Erin’s sister, Stacie, helped her buckle her shoe in a sweet role-reversal from Stacie’s wedding.  (A special thanks to Stacie – she was awesome sauce and a superstar for wedding photographers.  She was so incredibly helpful in helping round up family and friends for photos and I wish we had one of her at every wedding.)

Jim and Erin chose to have their first look in the chapel of the church.  The church, where Jim’s grandfather had served as a priest, recently celebrated their 100 year anniversary and we learned that all of the artwork that covered the walls were replicas of living icons.   They shared a private moment alone, bathed in sunlight streaming in through the stained-glass windows.

The ceremony was my first Russian Orthodox wedding with Joshua Albanese Photography, and it was incredible – filled with tradition and history.  And how awesome are those crowns!?!

Jim – a stylish guy in a perfectly-tailored tuxedo – helped Erin choose a white cape to match her wedding dress, so we stepped outside for a few fun photos before heading to the reception.


The reception was held at the County Line Orchard in Hobart, Indiana.  We love this venue, not only because of the cool history (built by the Amish and completely made of wood), but also because they have some of the best donuts we have ever tasted.  Jim and Erin chose centerpieces with coffee beans and black-eyed peas – tributes to their apartment above Starbucks and words of wisdom about luck from Erin’s grandfather.  They also treated guests to bottles of Italian Barolo and Red Strawberry Merlot that they made themselves.

The touches of burlap and vintage Rolodex guestbook were perfect accents for this barn reception.  Jim and Erin put together these adorable recipe books with some of their favorite family recipes for guest favors.  We’ve already tried Erin’s guacamole recipe and it was devoured almost immediately.  Such a great idea!

Their cake, from Cakes by Karen, featured delicate flowers scattered across the layers.

After the first dance and the parent dances, Music Masters Entertainment opened up the dance floor and kept it packed all evening.

Thank you so much, Jim and Erin, for letting us join in on your special day – and also for the donuts (that should come with an overindulgence warning)!

  • February 29, 2012 - 5:20 pm

    Stacie Cuplin - Wow, what beautiful pictures!!!ReplyCancel

  • February 29, 2012 - 5:22 pm

    Jim Bertram - Awesome job guys! So glad we had you there, the pictures definitely help me remember what a great day it was!ReplyCancel

  • February 29, 2012 - 6:06 pm

    Rhonda Bertram - Jim & Erin’s wedding pictures are phenominal…I can’t wait to be able to order our own copies. The “teaser” pics very original (especially love the one of Jim and his groomsmen on the playground). I will most definitely refer Albanese Photography to anyone who is looking for a wedding photographer!

    Thank you for a job well done.ReplyCancel

  • February 29, 2012 - 6:16 pm

    Mary Ann Bertram (Mom) ;) - You did a FANTASTIC job!
    And I love the comments! They tied everything together nicely.ReplyCancel

  • February 29, 2012 - 7:10 pm

    Dottie Casto - Thank you so much, they are awesome. A beautiful reminder of a wonderful day. Josh, you Rachel & Ashley were wonderful to work with. Can’t wait to order!!!ReplyCancel

  • February 29, 2012 - 7:25 pm

    Tanya Brown - Wow! Look at my big bro cleanin’ up so nice for his lovely bride… lookin’ like he stepped out of GQ magazine! The blog was an AMAZING idea and so well done, truly capturing the highlights and intimacy of the day. Thanks for sharing!ReplyCancel

  • February 29, 2012 - 10:22 pm

    Patti Weger - Wonderful pictures!! We had such a great time, and the pictures are just great!!ReplyCancel

  • March 1, 2012 - 1:32 am

    Erin Casto - I can’t begin to put into words how wonderful it was to have Rachel, Ashley & Josh be a part of our wedding day! Thank you three for everything you did, the snow shoveling and extra sweaters put you over the top. I knew the pictures would be amazing based on your work but had no idea how far you would go to ensure our day would be the best day of our lives. Thank you.ReplyCancel

  • March 1, 2012 - 1:58 am

    Denny Casto - Great Photos,Photography was definitely done with a creative Artist Touch. Thank you for catching some great moments to remember.ReplyCancel

  • March 1, 2012 - 2:02 am

    Jon Bertram - Cool website. It’s nice to get a look at some of the pictures so soon. I can’t wait for the rest.ReplyCancel

  • March 1, 2012 - 2:09 am

    Karla Cruz - It was a beautiful day!!ReplyCancel

  • March 1, 2012 - 5:52 am

    Chris and Trish Reed - Those pics are amazing! Its almost like we were there!! Thank you for taking such great pics of my family….its the next best thing to being there when we couldn’t. Congrats again!!!!!ReplyCancel

  • March 1, 2012 - 2:04 pm

    Christy Ryan - Awesome pictures. Some especially cute ones of Jim and Erin outside the barn and on the swings. Love those hilarious shots on the dancefloor!ReplyCancel

  • March 1, 2012 - 2:05 pm

    Ben Kwasnick - Great work guys! We had an awesome time!ReplyCancel

  • March 1, 2012 - 2:08 pm

    Mike Blaze - Great pictures. Looks like a great day despite the snow scare.ReplyCancel

  • March 1, 2012 - 2:17 pm

    Frank Kantroski - Erin and Jim – everything looks amazing. The reception looks like something out of a magazine. I really wish we could have been there to celebrate with you guys. Rob and Alex have discussed hot wedding with me. You guys look great all the best. We’re do happy for you.ReplyCancel

  • March 1, 2012 - 2:23 pm

    Amanda Moreth - Absolutely stunning pictures!! You did such a great job capturing the creative touches that Jim & Erin incorporated into their special day! We had a blast & can’t wait to see the rest!ReplyCancel

  • March 1, 2012 - 2:28 pm


  • March 1, 2012 - 2:33 pm

    Ellen Fleischhacker - Awesome photos! Erin – I love your dress; you looked beautiful!ReplyCancel

  • March 1, 2012 - 2:34 pm

    Paul Palichuk - JB – great pictures – way to put the region on the map for the city kids.ReplyCancel

  • March 1, 2012 - 2:40 pm

    Kasha Casto - The photos are beautiful! What a treasured memory you will have!ReplyCancel

  • March 1, 2012 - 3:03 pm

    Julie Trajkovski - Looks like it was a beautiful wedding! Really love the comments weaved into the pictures.

    Congrats to the newleyweds!ReplyCancel

  • March 1, 2012 - 3:29 pm

    Shane Cuplin - Nice pictures!!!ReplyCancel

  • March 1, 2012 - 3:38 pm

    Damean Clinton - Awesome pictures. They turned out great… especially the ones on swing and playground (good suggestion by someone, i mean me haha) I would definitely recommend your group to others. Well done.ReplyCancel

  • March 1, 2012 - 3:47 pm

    Mark Bertram - Great pics – everyone seems to have had a terrific time – lots of smiles. I was so happy that we were able to be there for your special day. Love yaReplyCancel

  • March 1, 2012 - 4:03 pm

    Mary Chapman - Everything looked Beautiful! Briana would love to have her wedding reception at a barn.ReplyCancel

  • March 1, 2012 - 4:19 pm

    Nicole Cuplin - Wow…beautiful pictures! Great job. Wedding was a blast-the pictures and comments really do a nice job of replaying the day.ReplyCancel

  • March 1, 2012 - 4:49 pm

    Todd Johnson - Great pictures capturing an even greater event.ReplyCancel

  • March 1, 2012 - 5:02 pm

    Jason Summerhill - Jim and Erin, pictures look great! Thanks for letting us share your day!ReplyCancel

  • March 1, 2012 - 5:23 pm

    kathy rock - THe pictures are beautiful. I love the caption detail so you know what was going on. Very nicely doneReplyCancel

  • March 1, 2012 - 6:19 pm

    Laurie Lietz - Beautiful pictures!!ReplyCancel

  • March 1, 2012 - 7:34 pm

    Steve Casto - The photography was Exceptional!!,They were able to capture the personality,Feelings and love that was cast upon on Erin & Jim from all their family members and friends.ReplyCancel

  • March 1, 2012 - 8:53 pm

    LaVonne Sharon - We had a great happy to be able to share “your day”. Awesome pics……I especiall love the swing one!!

  • March 1, 2012 - 8:57 pm

    Suz Downing - Erin looked so beautiful. The pictures are phenomenal and really captured their joy. The one on the swing is one of my favorites !ReplyCancel

  • March 1, 2012 - 10:52 pm

    Colin - Great Pics! We had a great time.ReplyCancel

  • March 2, 2012 - 12:21 am

    Evelyn Steiner - Jim and Erin,

    Have a happy life! The pictures are fantastic, the bride was beautiful and the cake was awesomw. What fun to see Jim, the elementary-age boy who came to visit his mother at school, and see him now as a grown man starting his own family. Congratulations!

    Evelyn SteinerReplyCancel

  • March 2, 2012 - 12:49 am

    Trena Garrison - Lovely pictures….and the photographer captured some especially sweet and poignant moments.ReplyCancel

  • March 2, 2012 - 12:58 am

    Cheryl Malloy - Great pictures! The sooner the better. What a tease to just want to see more.ReplyCancel

  • March 2, 2012 - 1:18 am

    Pat Reinhart - Great pictures! You had a great day and many good memories.ReplyCancel

  • March 2, 2012 - 9:52 am

    Continuum Photography - Excellent work my friend. – JoshReplyCancel

  • March 2, 2012 - 5:05 pm

    Aunt Claire - Erin

    Happy couple. Hope to see more pictures.ReplyCancel

  • March 2, 2012 - 5:11 pm

    Randy Homyk - Cool pictures.. Wish I could of been there.ReplyCancel

  • March 2, 2012 - 6:48 pm

    David Homyk - Jim, I am so happy for you. You wife looks beautiful and I am so glad you are so happy. Please forgive us for not being able to make it. Our family in the Gary area is very important to me and I am hopeful to see you in the near future. May god bless you and your new family….

    David and Laura Homyk
    Beaufort, South CarolinaReplyCancel

  • March 2, 2012 - 7:41 pm

    Andy Randazzo - Photos and wedding are gorgeousReplyCancel

  • March 2, 2012 - 8:04 pm

    Laurel Chybicki - Congrats to the happy couple, great picturesReplyCancel

  • March 2, 2012 - 8:24 pm

    Beverly Danna - Pictures were awesome. Black & white pictures were clear, detailed. Colored pictures showed depth and clarity. In all, pictures showed artistic talent.ReplyCancel

  • March 2, 2012 - 10:49 pm

    Irene Spiro - Jim & Erin beautiful pictures – congratulationsReplyCancel

  • March 3, 2012 - 3:34 am

    Trudi Cuplin - Great pictures Erin & Jim!!!ReplyCancel

  • March 3, 2012 - 3:25 pm

    Xavier moody - OMG i love every picture! you both look amazing!!! congrats so happy for u bothReplyCancel

  • March 3, 2012 - 4:13 pm

    Trudi Cuplin - Awesome pictures!!ReplyCancel

  • March 3, 2012 - 5:22 pm

    Stephanie Summerhill - Pictures are amazing as was everything about the wedding both Jim and Erin have great taste and Im glad I was a part of their big day!!!!!ReplyCancel

  • March 3, 2012 - 8:15 pm

    Ben Brown - The pictures look great!ReplyCancel

  • March 3, 2012 - 8:18 pm

    Tanya Brown - I love the picture with the guys on the playground!ReplyCancel

  • March 3, 2012 - 8:24 pm

    Ben Brown - The pictures look great! Congrats!ReplyCancel

  • March 4, 2012 - 4:47 am

    Barbara Bronson - Congratulations Jim and Erin, these are absolutely beautiful pictures! Thanks for sharing them with us! Much love!ReplyCancel

  • March 4, 2012 - 4:51 am

    Joseph Bronson - Erin and Jim, these are wonderful pictures, congratulations! Wish we could have attendedReplyCancel

  • March 4, 2012 - 4:53 am

    Haley Swartz - Beautiful pics Jim and Erin, wish we could have attended! Enjoy married life together!ReplyCancel

  • March 4, 2012 - 5:14 pm

    Michelle Johnson-Rhodes - Great picsReplyCancel

  • March 4, 2012 - 5:17 pm

    Stephanie Johnson-Miller - Very good pictures. May you have a long and happy life.ReplyCancel

  • March 4, 2012 - 7:03 pm

    Liz Hoobchaak - Great pictures, so glad we could share in your wedding day!ReplyCancel

  • March 4, 2012 - 11:43 pm

    Amy Kaspar - The pictures are great!!! Congratulations from your NJ family!!!!ReplyCancel

  • March 5, 2012 - 1:59 am

    Megan - Could there be a more lovely picture of you getting ready? I love them all!ReplyCancel

  • March 5, 2012 - 3:11 am

    Stephanir Johnson Miller - Very good pictures!! Best of luck to you.ReplyCancel

  • March 5, 2012 - 4:46 am

    Larry Meseberg - Jon, thanks for sharing the pictures. Looks like it was really a great day. Seeing the church I can remember your wedding with the procession and the crowns. Best of luck to the “kids”.ReplyCancel

  • March 8, 2012 - 10:18 pm

    Dan Homyk - Congratulations!!!! We wish you both the very best!!!
    Pictures are Great!
    Sorry we could not make it.
    Hope to see you soon!!

    Dan, Sue, Alyssa, Kaylee Homyk
    Oak Hill VAReplyCancel

  • March 9, 2012 - 3:44 pm

    Cakes By Karen - Beautiful wedding pictures, we wish Jim and Erin the best, it was a pleasure to work with them. Congratulations.ReplyCancel

  • April 14, 2012 - 2:41 am

    Jen Manfred - AMAZING pictures! What a great gift to have captured so much love to cherish over and over in the many years to come! Congratulations you guys! Such a beautiful bride & groom!ReplyCancel