An Intimate Outdoor Wedding at Timberwolf Creek in Maggie Valley, North Carolina

Sarah Singleton, 31, a scientist and Daniel Petersen, 33, a global strategy manager, met online and immediately hit it off. After 11 months of dating,

Sarah Singleton, 31, a scientist and Daniel Petersen, 33, a global strategy manager, met online and immediately hit it off. After 11 months of dating, Daniel decided to propose, getting Sarah's whole family in on the secret. Watching the sun set over Lake Michigan after a long day of hiking, Daniel popped the question with a custom-designed engagement ring and Sarah happily accepted. When they returned home that night, Sarah's whole family was there to celebrate the occasion. Daniel even proposed to Sarah's six-year-old daughter, Bailey, asking to be her step-father and presenting her with a necklace he had designed to match Sarah's ring.The couple started planning a lavish destination wedding for all of their family and friends, but quickly realized that an over-the-top wedding — and all the work that went along with it — just wasn't their style. Sarah and Daniel decided to do a bit of downsizing, settling on an intimate elopement in the mountains. "We really just wanted the day to be simple and focused on what was really important — the union of our family," says Sarah. They packed up their car and hit the road with Bailey and their 12-year-old dog Kenzie, driving from Indiana all the the way to Maggie Valley, North Carolina for a few relaxing days of bonding, enjoying each other's company and exploring the great outdoors. The couple tied the knot in an outdoor ceremony at Timberwolf Creek, surrounded by lush forests and breathtaking mountain views. "It's not for everyone," says Sarah, "but for us, being able to focus on each other and our daughter on such a special day was just perfect."

Daniel had been planning to propose for months before he popped the question, working with a local jeweler to create a custom solitaire engagement Sarah and a special necklace for her daughter Bailey.
While they kept the wedding's decor relatively simple, Daniel and Sarah stuck to tradition when it came to the boutonniere and bridal bouquet. Daniel perked up his tweed vest with a peach rose boutonniere, while Sarah carried a bouquet of brilliant red and yellow blooms.
Sarah and Daniel booked their elopement weekend only three weeks beforehand, which meant having to find a wedding dress and suit in record time. "Believe it or not, my husband's attire was the most distressing to find.  I found my dress and my daughters in one hour.  We spent weeks finding something for my husband and ended up special ordering his clothes," says Sarah. They arrived the day we left and we were uncertain they would fit.  It all worked out though; I think he looked incredibly handsome."
Sarah and Daniel's wedding was truly an intimate family affair. In addition to Sarah's daughter Bailey, the couple took along their 12-year-old chocolate lab, Kenzie, to North Carolina. Kenzie took part in the wedding festivities, accompanying Daniel down the aisle.
Sarah's daughter, Bailey, acted as flower girl for the elopement, leading her mother down the aisle in a playful, full-skirted dress with layers of floating ruffles.
The couple chose to keep the decorations to a minimum, allowing the natural setting of Timberwolf Creek, to set the scene. The few decorations they incorporated into the day drew on the colors of the fall season and the ceremony's surroundings.
"We love spending time with each other and truly enjoy one another's company," says Sarah, "It was blissful being able to truly focus on each other and our daughter on such a special day."
In lieu of a traditional reception, Sarah, Daniel and their daughter had an intimate celebratory dinner at a farm-to-table restaurant nearby, complete with a single tier wedding cake.
The natural setting of Timberwolf Creek, with it's stunning views of Maggie Valley, rolling hills and acres of lush forest, created a scenic backdrop for the couple's photos.