For those of you who don’t know, Dan and I got engaged back in May over Memorial Day Weekend – and since then have been planning our wedding! We decided we wanted to celebrate with our family and friends up in the northwoods of Wisconsin (where Dan proposed, his family owns a cabin up there, it’s where we got Boyd our cat, we spend a lot of time up there, etc.) this October 27th ๐Ÿ™‚ Unfortunately, though – our grandparents can’t make the drive up there (it’s a 6.5 hour drive from Chicago, wayyyy up there). We definitely wanted to celebrate with them too though, so we are doing a small ceremony in my parents’ backyard with just our immediate families THIS SUNDAY!

I can’t believe it’s here already. It has been a whirlwind ofย  a summer to say the least. Planning two weddings in less than five months in the middle of my busy wedding season has proven to be harder than I expected. Thankfully, our families and friends have all rallied around us to help pull everything together so quickly, and we’ve definitely been trying to enjoy some of the little moments leading up to the big day.

One of my favorite days of the summer was August 1st – our Engagement Session. Our good friend and JTP Team Photog, Nicki, spent the day with us at some of our favorite spots. We wanted the session to document who we are today – in this home, in this neighborhood. We know we’re not going to live here forever, so to capture our first home together was super important. We wanted to of course have some pics with the cats (Boyd and Butters)…


…Boyd wasn’t that happy about it. He’s a grumpy kitty but we love him anyways. He looks SO mad in this picture and I love it.


This is pretty standard – Dan and I watching something on Netflix and the cats chasing each other around and wrestling.


This is Butters’ favorite spot to sit. She’ll literally climb over me to sit on Dan.

When I’m lucky, Dan also humors me and dances with me in the kitchen. Boyd is usually my first choice dance partner, but he ends up growling after a few twirls.


We also make avocado toast fairly often – with all the goodies, too. Sprouts, cucumbers, tomato, onion, red pepper for me… and cream cheese (of course) for Dan.


Per usual, Boyd begs for food or bites our toes while we cook.



We also bike everywhere. We’re always on the 606, and it’s right next to our building so we had to capture some moments up there. Fun fact: our building is an old wood furniture factory that was converted into condos – kind of fitting for Mr. DMHwoodwork! You can usually catch us biking to any street fests, the gym, to work, to hang with friends – if it’s nice out – we’re biking.


Another (not so) fun fact – I lost my necklace during the shoot, and Dan’s bike (pictured above) got stolen shortly after this shoot ๐Ÿ™ he has since replaced it with the exact same bike and never locks it up outside anymore (sighhh Chicago life).


Parson’s Chicken and Fish is one of our go to spots for frozen drinks and patio hangs in the neighborhood. Dan likes their chicken so much he once ate two still cold chicken wings without noticing – until I bit into one and realized it was still cold. JillTiongcoPhotography-ChicagoWeddingPhotographer_0016.jpg

The Freeze is also a summertime neighborhood favorite. Dan’s go to order: pistachio soft serve dipped in butterscotch. It looks like poo but actually tastes pretty delicious. Me? I’m a wildcard and usually panic and order something different every time – but I’m never disappointed. JillTiongcoPhotography-ChicagoWeddingPhotographer_0022.jpg

We opted for the pistachio dipped in birthday cake so it wouldn’t look so gross for pics ๐Ÿ˜‰ย  JillTiongcoPhotography-ChicagoWeddingPhotographer_0020.jpg

I swear we do other things than eat and drink… but this session wouldn’t have been complete with a stop at Small Cheval. We’ve ended more than a drunken night or two at Small Cheval and a quick walk home on the 606. Also, that’s our blue line train in the top left corner. All of the meaningful things!


Ahhh Alta. I used to live in this building. It’s where I still lived when Dan and I first started dating. This pool was where Dan confessed all of his feelings after all of these years of friendship. And shortly after I realized that this was a real thing – and two years later – we got engaged, and we’re getting married this weekend! CRAZY. But it all started here.


And of course we had to end the session at Diversey Riverbowl – we spend more time here than I like to admit (between bowling league with the Bobo Dawgs, date nights, and somehow most nights out with friends end up at the bowling alley) –ย  I even have my own bowling ball and shoes. Although it might not be the prettiest location for an engagement session – these moments with our friends are important to us, and ones we never want to forget… even though I may have gotten hit in the head with a bowling ball this time.


If you’re still here – thanks for reading a little bit about our love story! It’s fun (and a little scary) to put it up here with all of our JTP couples – but just wanted to share a glimpse of what’s going on behind the scenes these days. We’re getting married on Sunday and then taking the week to enjoy and celebrate our marriage together. Back to your regularly scheduled JTP weddings and engagements blogs the first week of October, I promise. Thanks for your patience in the meantime ๐Ÿ™‚