Awaiting Ben: Bump and Beyond

Oh Katie. Glorious Katie with her stunning auburn curly hair and love for accessories. Katie had two maternity sessions so she could include both of her boys and her husband. What sweet boys they were!!! Polite, good listeners and SO OBVIOUSLY crazy about their Mom and their unborn baby brother. I love those sweet images! And shall we talk about the amazing image of Katie and her husband. It’s so romantic, positively swoon worthy.

Ben arrived a few days early which is a good thing because he’s a chunky little thing! Katie and her husband brought him into the studio and they were remarkably relaxed. Is that what happens when you have 3 kids? Guess I’ll never know! I loved Ben’s little lips and how determined he was to keep those fingers curled up near his face. He gave me a run for my money but in the end, we captured him perfectly. I especially love the patriotic images of Ben wrapped in the family flag and his Daddy’s Air Force uniform. To me, those images are strong and tender all at once.

“This nation will remain the land of the free only so long as it is the home of the brave”. ~Elmer Davis

A special thank you to Jason and all of our military heroes.

May Ben be as brave and capable as his Dad!

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Awaiting Kai: Bump and Beyond

I met Suzanne through two of my other clients. I was struck by her amazing beauty during her maternity session. You know that pregnant glow they speak of (the one I NEVER had!!!), yeah…they named it after Suzanne. She was luminous, full of hope and excitement for the journey ahead.
Baby Kai came into the world with a full head of hair and a glorious smile. His parents, well, they’re naturals. Experts already at shushing and rocking and tenderly holding. I was able to capture some spectacular parent shots that I feel are my finest work to date. Not because they’re technically perfect, but because they totally captured the emotion of the moment. We had some fun too with my boat prop because Kai actually means ocean in Hawaiian.

β€œhark, now hear the sailors cry,
smell the sea, and feel the sky
let your soul & spirit fly, into the mystic…”
― Van Morrison

Soar high Kai!
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Awaiting Carter: Bump and Beyond

I met Anna, fellow JMU grad (go Dukes!) at a CAbi party hosted by my former roommate. We exchanged information and I went home and crossed my fingers that she’d call. Maternity work is my favorite and I knew Anna would be an amazing model! Anna came prepared with lots of ideas for both her maternity session and newborn session and we had great fun executing them. I especially love the before and after family photo!

Carter was the first of my June newborns to arrive. He’s a beautiful little peanut with blond hair and fair skin like his Momma. He was a remarkable cooperative model, up for hat changes, being posed in a dumptruck and another lifestyle session with big brother at almost one month old.

Oftentimes during the quiet moments of a session, when I’m holding a newborn and gazing into his brand new eyes, I pause and wonder what they will accomplish in life. It’s so special for me to have this time with these brand new beings. Carter has amazing parents and a very proud big brother to help him grow and I can’t wait to see what amazing things he does!

Babies are such a nice way to start people. ~Don Herrold

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Home Run Love: Camden Yards Engagement Session

I always think of myself as a maternity/newborn photographer. That being said, how could I resist the opportunity to shoot at Brittany and Seth’s Camden Yards engagement session, during non-game time? I’m not even a huge sports fan and it made me weep. My husband probably would have melted into a puddle on the ground. We had pretty much full access to the stadium and shot images in the dug out, in the stadium, and along the main “Eutaw Street” drag. Uber cool. What a way to honor their first date there!

Then we were off to see a few of the other Baltimore landmarks: the Federal Hill overlook and the Museum of Visionary Art. Despite warnings that he was less than eager to be in front of the camera, Seth did amazing. And Brittany…not a bad picture of her out of the somewhere near 700 that I took. Talk about photogenic.

So thank you to Seth and Britt for choosing me to capture these moments. These photos will make great “remember when” stories to tell people one day!

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Bliss: Wedded and Beyond

I met Murissa in first grade. I don’t remember our first interaction but she actually does. Apparently I complimented her on her apple sweater and gave her a tour of the classroom. We were inseparable for many years suffering through Girl Scout camp together and doing crazy things like remaking my unfinished basement with strands of sea shells and attempting to reopen the old town movie theater. We were some ambitious spirited young women. Now we’re a couple of crafty Moms, channeling our love for interior design and creative kiddo playtime.

Fast forward 20+ years and Murissa was getting ready to get married. She shares my passion for photography so I was both honored and nervous when she asked me to capture her big day. It’ll be laid back she assured me. Not so much. It was GLORIOUS. Far too elegant and styled to be considered laid back or casual. I loved all her little artsy touches and how they threw down and ate crabs in their beautiful wedding gear. Surreybrooke garden center provided the perfect setting for the day. I can hardly wait to shoot there again!

I owe a great debt to Stefanie Harrington who did an amazing job second shooting. Her blog will be up soon and I can’t wait to see how she interpreted the day!
Check her out at http://www.stefanieharrington.com/surreybrooke-maryland-garden-wedding/

“The highest happiness on earth is marriage.” ~William Lyon Phelps
Wishing Murissa and Kevin precisely that type of happiness.

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Weddings: It’s all in the details

This summer I got my feet wet with wedding photography. I had the honor of second shooting weddings with Amanda of It Flies By Photography and Liz of Liz Hough Photography. Then I did three of my own weddings.
My absolute favorite part of weddings is the detail shots. You know, shots of the things you spent months planning.

Of the ring he carefully selected.
Of the flowers that you chose for their soft color and delicate texture.
Of the shoes you hope will make it through the night.
Of the cake toppers and the table centerpieces that you hope guests will notice.

In capturing these details, I’m giving you a reminder of the small things that made your big day so special.

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Wow Me Wednesdays: Sarah Edition

Here we are at week 2 of the Wow Me series and it’s my turn to feature the products that rock my world! Let’s start with my favorite topic: Shoes!

SHOES
So….once upon a time I was supa fly. Well at least I thought I was supa fly. I rocked my sky high heels for years even when I worked as a field marketer who walked all day long. Honestly, my feet never hurt me. Fast forward a few years and now I’m pretty used to my life as a low key stay at home mom. My feet swell up if I even look at those once beloved heels. So I keep it classy in Sperry’s or Minnetonka Mocs. Both are available at either Nordstroms or Macy’s or online.

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STYLE
1. CAbi
http://www.cabionline.com/collection/
In my older age (OLDER not OLD) I’ve come to appreciate a well made garment. No more shopping at Forever 21, or as my Mom calls it, Forever 31. My go to place for amazing clothes that are chic, effortless and unique is CAbi. My insanely fabulous roommate from college hosts these parties twice a year and I allow myself to splurge on one or two pieces. Like this feather button up blouse that I wore belted to Evie’s third birthday party. Having these items in my closet makes it super easy to get ready for a night out on the town.

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2. The perfect red lip
I can not lie. I don’t ever leave the house without makeup. But, most days I keep it super simple and add a bold lip. To me, red lipstick makes me feel instantly glamorous and pulled together. Almost as if I’m not a frazzled mom with a whole lot going on πŸ™‚ Here are two of my favorite brands, both purchased through QVC. Lipstick queen earns added points for their uber cool packaging.
Lipstick Queen: Sinner
It Cosmetics: Pretty Woman
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3. Big bold jewelry
I’m not a big fan of expensive jewelry because I tend to lose things but I LOVE LOVE LOVE costume jewelry. My hubs heads straight to Zelda Zen (now located in Fells Point) for any big occasion. He can’t go wrong there and Beth, the owner, is one of the most truly generous people I have ever met. Evie and I model Beth’s items in these pictures.
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4. A “Mom tote”
What would I do without my endless supply (I think I own 4) of ThirtyOne Organizing Utility Totes? They are the perfect solution for Moms on the go. All the side pockets hold sunscreen and lip balm and snacks and the tote is the perfect size for carrying all your Mom necessities. I thought I’d be rid of a diaper bag after Evie didn’t wear diapers but instead was saddled with a change of clothes and a portable toilet seat. One day I’ll get to carry my Coach bags again but for now, these totally make my life easy.Β  Added bonus that they came in Raven’s purple last fall!
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RELAX & UNWIND
1. Lush SOFT COEUR massage bar
http://www.lushusa.com/
Holy goodness. One of my fellow workshop mates from the Rachel Vanoven workshop turned me on to this solid lotion bar. It smells like heaven. Like heaven on its very finest smelling day. You rub it on immediately after a bath or shower when your skin is warm and it soaks right in. Try it. And then try to resist taking a bite out of your own arm!
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2. Netflix streaming membership
My evenings basically involve editing until my eyes burn and then getting in bed and watching one of these three shows on Netflix (Damages, Scandal and Arrested Development). What would I do without my streaming membership? Each time I finish a series something new is there waiting for me. Instant gratification for $8/month!

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3. Haagan-Dazs Caramel Cone Ice Cream
I dare you not to eat the whole pint in one sitting. Nuff said.
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LOCAL AGRICULTURE
1. JFX Farmer’s Market
I’ve been going to the JFX Farmer’s Market for over 10 years. In fact, I remember telling one of the vendors that I got into JMU so that actually puts me at over 15 years! My Mom and I eagerly await opening weekend every year and now Evie is part of our market tradition. We have come to know and love the vendors. Check out Uptown Bakery for some delicious tea cakes, Dangerously Delicious Pies for their savory spinach and goat cheese quiche and the mushroom vendor for her amazing fritters topped with hot sauce and feta. Oh, and Evie highly recommends the strawberries from Agriberry and the hot fresh donuts near the Zeke’s coffee entrance.
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2. Breezy Willow CSA
This year I decided to join a CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) group in an effort to eat more veggies and try new things. Each week Evie and I pick up our goodies at a designated location. We chose Breezy Willow because they include fruit, veggies, bread, eggs and once a month either yogurt, jam or honey. Perhaps the best part is the recipes they send you the night before pick up. Clever!
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GEAR
1. Black Rapid Camera Strap
http://www.blackrapid.com/
I was so tired of having a sore neck from a heavy camera! The Black Rapid strap was the perfect solution for me because it shifted the weight of the camera across my body. I like the simple black color and they also have a design made especially for women.
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2. ShootSac
http://www.shootsac.com/collections/lensbags
I am not sure there is a totally comfortable way to carry some serious lbs of lenses but I think this shootsac is as good as it gets. The shoulder pad is well padded and it makes switching lenses much easier than when I carried everything in a backpack. The added back pockets allow me to store extra batteries, memory cards and lollipops that I use as bribes πŸ™‚
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So….that’s it for this week! If you get nothing else from this post, get the Haagan-Dazs ice cream. It makes everything all better!