Jake + Cayla: Suprise Proposal in Norway, MI

How does one pull off a beautiful surprise proposal? Well, let me tell you about it…;) 😉

Cayla contacted me earlier this month about doing some couple’s portraits in Norway, MI. She said that her and her boyfriend had recently bought land and wanted pictures of it before they started the process of building their ‘forever home’ on the property. I was thrilled. I am an extremely sentimental person and so the entire idea seemed amazing! Sign me up!

We set up the date trying to find a time that would provide that beautiful golden hour light and trees that hadn’t lost all their leaves yet. We ended up with October 10th. Beautiful day? Check. Golden hour start time? Check. Trees still hanging on to their leaves? Eh…for the most part. But two out of three ain’t bad so I’m taking it!

The 10th comes and I’m working on directions with Cayla via email (curse you google…why you hate the U.P.??), when I get a surprising email in my inbox. Someone named Jake claiming to be Cayla’s boyfriend and what’s this? He wants to do a surprise proposal?!?!

My heart burst. This man is a genius. Not only did he pick one of the most BEAUTIFUL days to propose, he also decided to do it where they are literally building their life together. And there’s a photographer already lined up to be there?? Genius! Genius I tell you! Or as my husband says in Polish, geniusz!

I spent the rest of the morning emailing Jake a couple of times nailing down the plan. However, at the same time I was also messaging Cayla about directions. As a result, I kid you not, I doubled checked every single message sent making sure I didn’t mix anything up or give anything away…I was so nervous! These were high stakes, people!

After all that, the time finally arrives for their session to start. First, we get started with some sweet portraits of them both with their amazing pups: Kenai and Nala. Next, we had fun just going through a few fun poses and moments while Nala and Kenai got to run around. (Fun fact: You can actually see the ring box in Jake’s pocket in some of the portraits before the proposal. See how many you can find! ) Finally, moved up the hill to where Cayla and Jake actually planned to build their home.

Once there, I asked Cayla to let me get a picture of just her in font with Jake ‘looking all in love’ behind her. (Of course, Jake was actually pulling out the ring!) Next, I told her to just ‘hold that pose’ for a second while I changed the angle, then asked her to turn around and…boom. I just let Jake do his thing. <3

The rest of the session was like a dream. I got to capture the VERY FIRST moments of them being officially engaged, her wearing her ring for the first time, so many firsts! It was pure magic and I loved EVERY. MINUTE.

In conclusion, if you plan on pulling off a surprise proposal, do a photographer and yourself a favor and hire one to be there for it. You WILL NOT regret it, and you’ll literally be making that photographer’s LIFE by letting them capture it.

Congratulations, Jake and Cayla!! I am so stinking excited for you both!!

Look at how good these too puppers are doing!
Love that glow coming in behind them!
Jake, rocking the ‘rock her’ move 😉
Picture of couple on a hill with trees with fall colors behind them
Last few pictures before the big moment and…
Black and White image of Cayla looking down at Jake proposing
<3 <3!!!!!
Black and white image of surprise proposal. Jake is on his knee and Cayla is holding his head in her hands.
Nala looking all excited is just the best!
Check out that ring, y’all! This girl’s engaged!!
Such a beautiful ring!
Close up image of engagement ring with a square cut diamond.
Catching some of that sweet glow before we go back down the hill…
Just the start of their happily ever after…

  1. Brigitte says:

    Ahhh I love pup portraits! This session is so beautiful!

  2. Monica says:

    Beautiful! I loved the glowy images.

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wedding and portrait photography

Crystal Falls, Michigan