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Natalie & Russell
A Benedictine College Love Story


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we're katzie and ben

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How they met

Natalie and Russell are college sweethearts who met through mutual friends in the middle years of school at Benedictine College in Atchison, Kansas. They were determined to keep the flame alive and navigate long distance dating after graduation while Russell pursued a master’s degree and Natalie moved back to work in her Minnesotan hometown.

The Proposal

As the holidays were approaching, Russell decided that it was time to ask Natalie to be his wife and planned to ask her during their road trip to Arizona for Thanksgiving with his extended family. As they passed through New Mexico, Russell insisted that they make a stop at the White Sands National Park. The views there are breathtaking and Russell planned it out so that the two of them would arrive right at sunset. As they climbed to top of the tall sand hills, Natalie whipped out her phone to take some photos and get a 360 degree video of the golden rays hitting the landscape, then turned around to see Russell down on one knee ready to propose. With five years of dating to ponder the answer to that question, it was easy to finally say YES! How fun to then share the happy news going into the holiday weekend with his family?! They surely had a LOT to be thankful for this year!

Their Engagement Session

It’s one thing to date long distance, but it is a whole other layer to plan a wedding too. Russell traveled in this spring to Minnesota so he could help check off many of their wedding to-do list items in person – including taking their engagement photos!

Natalie had her heart set on going to Taylors Falls for their engagement session, and we were totally up for it. It was an awesome location to celebrate this chapter of their lives, not to mention it made for a very epic backdrop to show off how awesome her hometown state is to the guests who will be travelling in for the wedding! We couldn’t have picked a more beautiful night for it as the sun set over the river and bluffs around them.

We can’t wait to celebrate their wedding later this summer at St. Anne’s Catholic Church in Hamel, MN! That church is near and dear to us for the childhood memories Ben has from going there with his family and because we’ve come to know so many incredible couples and families who are building up the parish community there! When it comes to marriage, you want to be surrounded by great community and be building your relationship on a firm foundation. It’s clear that Natalie and Russell have that in abundance and we’re so happy for them!

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We are so glad you pulled up a chair and allowed us to share our heart for marriage, life, faith and beauty with you. Come on in and stay a while.