Book your Wedding, Save a Sea Turtle

It’s a pretty well-known fact around these parts that I’m an avid traveler and an animal lover. And one of my favorite animals that I encounter time and again while traveling is sea turtles. I seek them out, but they definitely find me. I know that’s a little woo-woo, but hear me out: the last time I was on Maui I did a snorkel boat trip and my snorkel buddy and I were the only ones who saw turtles. Like a lot of turtles. While the rest of the boat saw none. Then, when I was in Antigua on a turtle nesting watch, we saw a higher number of nesting females than usual according to the research team on the project. I’m not gonna say I’m the sea turtle whisperer, but… science!

Hawksbill Turtle nesting research in Antigua

Hawksbill Turtle nesting research in Antigua

There are seven species of sea turtles and two of them — Hawksbills and Kemp’s Ridley — are critically endangered. Green sea turtles are endangered; Leatherbacks, Loggerheads, and Olive Ridleys are vulnerable and there’s not enough data to determine the status of Flatbacks. [source]

This hurts my heart and since many of my couples are fellow travelers and animal lovers, I wanted to do something that could help the turtle population, even if it’s in some small way.

For every wedding booked I’ll be adopting a sea turtle from the Sea Turtle Conservancy in the name of the wedding couple.

The couple will receive a personalized adoption certificate, a Sea Turtle Conservation Guide, a window cling, a sea turtle sticker and bookmark, a hatchling magnet, and a one-year subscription to STC's membership publication, all in a keepsake sea turtle folder. 

But more than that, the money will be used to support Sea Turtle Research and Conservation in the United States, Costa Rica, Panama, Bermuda, and the Wider Caribbean; fund cutting-edge Education Programs reaching millions of people around the world; and protect Critical Sea Turtle Nesting Beaches, such as Tortuguero, Costa Rica, and the Archie Carr National Wildlife Refuge in Florida.

Measuring and tagging turtles in Eleuthera, Bahamas - notice the sea turtle tattoo, which is also my logo, on my foot

Measuring and tagging turtles in Eleuthera, Bahamas - notice the sea turtle tattoo, which is also my logo, on my foot

Facts about Sea Turtles

  • Sea turtles return to where they were born to nest, some species travel more than 1,000 miles in the open ocean to go home to nest.

  • Sea Turtles can be up to six feet long.

  • Marine life is a threat to turtles, but humans — in the form of poaching, habitat destruction, and ocean pollution — pose a huge threat to sea turtles.

  • Sand temperature affects the sex of turtle hatchlings and climate change has had an impact on nesting sites.

  • Unlike other turtles, sea turtles cannot retract their legs into their shells.

  • Sea Turtles can stay underwater for up to five hours and their heart beat can slow to once every nine minutes to conserve oxygen while underwater.

  • Mating season is March though October and gestation time is 6-10 weeks. Egg clutches can be between 70-200 eggs. However it’s estimated that only 1 in 1,000 hatchlings will survive to adulthood.

Learning about Sea Turtles at Bequia’s Old Hegg Turtle Sanctuary

Learning about Sea Turtles at Bequia’s Old Hegg Turtle Sanctuary

Arundel Estate Wedding Venue

Can we just talk about how gorgeous Arundel Estate is? This gorgeous two-story estate house is the epitome of Southern charm and I am here for it! Wedding venues like this make my job So. Much. Fun! And the rustic elegant decor created by planner Cathie of C Squared Events fit the venue perfectly. I mean, just imagine having your cocktail hour on the pool deck and your wedding reception under those gorgeous trees! *swoon*

Arundel Estate Wedding

Tanea + James | Villages Polo Club Engagement Photos

Tanea and James are recent Florida transplants and they’re full of fun! This vibrant couple recently moved to Orlando after James’ work had him traveling here on a regular basis. They both work in the wrestling industry (so cool, right?) and seem to feed off the others playful energy!

We had a blast shooting their engagement photos at The Villages Polo Club and Katie Belle’s provided the incredible picnic spread to snack on — and shoot! The Villages Polo Club is an incredible wedding venue, with a gorgeous tree serving as the backdrop for their events. It’s truly a hidden gem and Barbara, the events manager, takes excellent care of her couples and all the necessary details! And Katie Belle’s, well, they had my heart with cannoli cream filled strawberries! They handle the catering for the Polo Club and let’s just say you’re going to want to wear stretchy pants!