Just like the wedding itself, it was in the Hunter Valley that Leanne and Rodney first met. At the Neath Hotel, Leanne was dancing the night away celebrating a friend’s 40th when Rod, staying for a night as he drove through the countryside on a memorial ride, walked in.

The pair, inseparable since, decided that of course, the stunning region would be the perfect place for their eventual tying of the knot. The pair, battling COVID-19’s endless restrictions and impositions,, still managing to create their day, that was, in the groom Rodney’s words (who shares the couple’s stories today) “just so COMFORTABLE. It was open & relaxing for all who were able to attend.” Adding to that easygoing, natural vibe? Photography by Kitty of Lily & Twine Photography. Scroll on to see how these two made their wedding their way.

Rodney tells of Leanne’s gown, which she found at Shazzam “Leanne’s dress was champagne coloured, boho style dress. Leanne loved the dress for its subtle, classy style. The dress was age-appropriate & suited Leanne’s body & personality.”

The entire day’s celebrations were held at Hunter Valley bush venue Kookaburra Hideaway says Rodney.  “The Kookaburra Hideaway was amazing! Like a story book come to life. Magical.”

Rod chose a navy suit from Gentleman’s Outfitters for the day. He tells “I wore an Australian made wool suit, royal blue, with a white shirt & pink tie. As a special touch, Leanne bought me a set of American flag cuff links as a tribute to my family in America who weren’t able to attend due to COVID.”

Oh and that furry friend? Meet Dozer. Laughs Rodd “Our dog, Dozer, was a part of our ceremony. He waited with me at the alter & even had a matching pink tie.”

The bride chose Kelly Clarkson’s “A moment like this” for her walk down the aisle.

“The ceremony was beautiful” remembers Rod. “It was held outside under the “wedding tree”. We wanted a natural open bush setting to create a comfortable feeling. Just a traditional reading. Short & sweet (like Leanne).”

These two have many favourite photographs of their day. “That’s a tough one. There were so many stunning photos & cute intimate candid photos. Kitty & Jade from Lily & Twine photography captured our day perfectly. If I had to narrow it down, there are three outstanding photographs :
The first is us after we’ve just been married & we’re walking up the aisle to Elvis Presley’s “Burning Love” all our guests are behind us & we’re both smiling & laughing.
The second is of us both kissing in the middle of long rows of olive trees with a flash lighting up the trees behind us. STUNNING!!
The third is of us about to cut the cake & we’re laughing. It captures us perfectly.”

The choice to recommend their photographer? An easy one for Rodney and Leanne. “Kitty of Lily & Twine Photography, & Jade (aka the Ninja) are wonderful. So talented. They felt like sisters. We felt so comfortable with them. They worked so fluently together. If we didn’t have to pose for any official or traditional type photos, we didn’t know they were there. Yet they took SO MANY wonderful photos that captured our day & told our story.”

When asked if he has any advice for those yet to walk down the aisle. Rodney says “No, nothing can prepare you for all that’s involved in planning a wedding. I suggest you listen to Brad Paisley’s “All you really need is love”.
Once the day is here, slow down!! Breath. Take in everything because it goes FAST!”


Leanne and Rodney very much made sure to do their day their way. “We had no traditions” says Rodney. “However, Leanne had a pendent made with a beautiful photo of her late mother, on her wedding day, inserted into it & she attached it to her bouquet. It was a beautiful touch.”

The newlyweds chose “When I found you” by Jasmine Rae for their first dance. Remembers the groom, ” The first dance was lovely. We just looked at each other the whole time & it felt like we were the only ones there.”

A big congratulations to you both Leanne and Rodney! Thank you for sharing the stories of your day with us. Thank you also to Kitty of Lily & Twine Photography for sharing today’s imagery and working with us on this feature!