Getting Married in Iceland to New Beginnings in Paris

“There are moments in life when you know you’ve crossed a bridge, your old life is over.” – Limitless

Dearest Clients, Fans, and Friends:

I want to take this post to be very candid with you.  You, my fabulous readers might have noticed a bit of a change in my Iceland Wedding Planner posts beginning in June of last year to now.  IE: The tone, my team changes, the direction my blog was heading, and the very big announcement at New Years that I would be officially splitting my time between the USA, Iceland and the other amazing Nordic Countries.

Well, everyone loves a good story, right?  This past year for me personally, has been filled with some pretty life changing ones.  Honestly, I have debated for months on whether or not to share this very personal side of my life…  But as a public blogger, international wedding planner, and a destination wedding photographer I believe it’s important to connect personally and professionally.  So that being said, I want you to understand something about me, I’m authentic.  At no point will you see me pretending to be something I’m not, nor will I apologize for being who I am.  …so that being said, please buckle your seat-belts and read on if I’ve peaked your curiosity =)

My Story:

If you read my early Iceland Wedding Planner blog posts you know a little history about me… Like that I have always been a businesswoman, avid traveler, adventurer (fervent extreme sports enthusiast – climbing/skydiving, etc) and was a serial dater before I met the man I would marry in Iceland in April of 2012.  Over the last 2.5 years of writing this wonderful Iceland Wedding Planning blog, life shifted into perspective for me, passions emerged, and big decisions needed to be made in order to move forward, be happy, and to do what I ultimately love for the rest of my life.  It’s always been a mantra of mine to ensure I live life fully and never have regrets.  I don’t ever want to be sitting on the sidelines wishing I would have made that leap to take that risk that would change the course of my life or even the world, I’d rather JUST DO IT.  Life doesn’t wait for you to be ready and time passes too quickly to say “one day I will” because let’s be honest, you probably won’t.

As you can probably tell, I’m an entrepreneur to the core and have been since I was 12 years old (what, I’m over 30 now, lol?!).  People either love or hate this about me, but that’s just it – that’s me and you cannot change it, it’s in my bones.  If I don’t challenge myself to come up with new/expand business ventures or fill up a page a week in my “Brilliant Ideas” book I’m disappointed in myself.

Always being an independent woman (huge props to my single mom), having to create my successes on my own, and accomplishments from nothing – I found marriage to be really tough for me.  Especially since I married someone who didn’t understand the notion of having to struggle in life, ever.  Everyone kept telling me that the first year is the “hardest” but then year two came and it felt even harder.  Feelings of never being “good enough” were constant, along with an endless amount of criticism that was unwarranted.  …and who in their first year of marriage, slaps their well-traveled audacious spouse with a “no travel” mandate (unless it was for business)?  Hence the start of the Iceland Wedding Planner business in October of 2012 =) As soon as I said “I do” I felt like my adventures, decisions, and future were being trapped, tamed, and held back.  Awful, awful feeling for an entrepreneur.

As my businesses grew and my enthusiasm increased, my husband sadly did not share the same excitement for me, the growth, nor was he on board with my Nordic adventure wedding concept.  In fact, he would downplay the value and potential to our friends, family, and anyone we would meet.  It’s called respect and every marriage needs it.  I’m not trying to play saint here either folks- I’ve made a lot of mistakes, but I’ve owned up to them, and allowed them to build my character.  In the end, the most important thing is that: I tried.  Uttering the word “divorce” is not easy to someone (like me) who respects, values, and appreciates the hell out of love, romance, and the solemn institute of marriage.  But it sadly was a subject that had to be faced in my world.  FACT: You only have 1 life and it is far too short to spend it unhappy, unfulfilled, or walking around on eggshells.  This past year has revived me back to my fabulous sparkly self as I emerged from the fire.  So who is that?  Outside of what you read on my “about” page I am…

ME:

Endlessly energetic, optimistic, smile to no end, laugh a lot, bold, thrive on adventure, I love love, people, and challenges.  I have a crazy attention to detail, awesome with logistics on anything anywhere, have a serious passion for wedding planning, wedding photography and Iceland.

Fun Facts About Me:

  • Firm believer in seeking experiences, not things.
  • I’ll push your adventure limits… You’ll say “uncle” before I do =)
  • I believe the best stories in the world are the pages in your passport!
  • I write blog posts on boarding passes.
  • Just about every sentence I write ends with an exclamation point (so you can feel my enthusiasm)!
  • I curse in excitement, don’t be offended.
  • I am really good at extreme sports (but suck at organized sports, except hockey).
  • Somehow over the last 15 years, I have photographed over 500 weddings all over the world.
  • I own more dresses than pants (200 vs. 2 pairs, lol), yes seriously.
  • I have skydived on almost every continent.
  • Climbed on over 30 glaciers.
  • Have a serious shoe collection and it consists mostly of Sorel boots, Badgley Mischkas, or Betsey Johnson polka dot heels.
  • I have a crazy sweet exotic Bengal cat named, Oliver. He plays fetch.
  • Huge fan of Instagram, connect with me lets share cool stuff!
  • Own several fun business ventures: Your Adventure WeddingPhotos by Miss Ann, Iceland Wedding Planner, and Nordic Wedding Planner.
  • It’s likely I’ll have pink hair when we meet.
  • My clients always end up being my friends!
  • I dare you to tell me something I “can’t” do.

To celebrate the kick off of my new life endeavors, I took a trip to the mecca of champagne.  After all, marriages begin with toasts, champagne, and smiles so they shall end with those things as well, right?  I spent several magical days with my closest friends in Paris and Reims France.  We shared more laughs, inside jokes, and bubbles than we could handle, it was epic!  Then came the most shocking thing… I dared to get in FRONT of the camera!  A huge thanks to the super sweet Erika Gerdemark Photography, for documenting!  She has been kind enough to allow me to share these tremendously fun images with you below.  Also check out the Offbeat Empire Blog for a feature of my Freedom Session!

Thank you followers, for reading, supporting, and sharing this very exciting time in my life!  Now back to planning and photographing your incredibly awesome adventurous Iceland weddings…

With a smile, Ann Peters (Iceland Wedding Photographer and Planner)

 

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