Thompson {Winter Mini}

When Kim first contacted me about her maternity session, she was worried it wouldn’t snow in time for baby B to be born. So we did her session as a fall shoot. Then we got snow pretty early this year, so we ran out for another quick session in the snow!

I am IN LOVE with her session. There’s something about snow that I love shooting in. Especially when clients wear RED. It just pops against the whites and greens of winter. Our base has plenty of pretty pine trees to use as backdrops as well.

I ran into her husband the day or two after our session, and he said baby B was born! We got these photos in just in time. I’m so happy for them, I could tell how excited Kim was to meet her son.

And I’m glad we could get her snowy maternity pictures in. Absolutely swooning over these pictures!

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Dunnehoo {Winter Mini}

I’ve known the Dunnehoo’s for a while, my kids go to school with theirs, and they are just the most lovely of families! Piper is one of my favorite kids, she’s one of the only kids here that isn’t afraid of my dogs, and she loves to chase them around and play. My oldest and their oldest are friends, and my daughter was super sad when she found out they wouldn’t be in the same class this year!

When they asked me to take their photos outside, I was more than happy to do so. See, we live in ND, and it’s COLD here. It snowed early this year, and the day we shot was absolutely freezing, but you can’t tell in these photos. I love love love that they asked to do some “aw man, we are stuck in ND and it’s cold and we don’t love it” poses. That’s real life right there, LOL.

We had a blast shooting, even though I couldn’t feel my fingers! I’m so happy with the “sister hug” I captured. Sisters are just the best, I miss mine fiercely. Pictures in the snow are becoming some of my favorite to do; although it’s generally cold and the camera freezes after so long, that white background is simply stunning, and really makes the colors of their outfits pop.

Thanks for bearing the cold with me guys, it was super fun!

Vincelette {Winter Mini}

Oh, Tara. How I miss working with you every day!

I met Tara when I worked at Altru, under some not-so-great circumstances. You see, the building I was working in was not stable, and one day, there was a crack and they escorted us all out of there. Because of that, we were relocated. Little did I know, it would be a blessing in disguise! Because of that crack, I met Tara. And while I no longer work at Altru, this lovely lady became such a great friend.

It makes you think, there truly are no mistakes in life. Although I didn’t work at Altru long, I made at least one great friend there, and had I not worked there, I never would have done these photos. I wouldn’t have met her amazingly sweet boys.

Everything happens for a reason, they say. And I’m so, so glad that I got to work with, and become work buddies, with Tara. I’m so happy she’s moved on to a job that makes her happier, and I’m so glad I got to spend a few minutes capturing a moment in time for her. There’s literally no job I’ve loved as much as being a photographer!

Cucci {Christmas Mini}

I am REALLY behind in blogging. Like, almost 6 sessions! EEK!

But that’s ok, I have some time right now to write about one of my first winter sessions. And I’m absolutely infatuated with these pictures. Snow is hard to shoot in, because it just bounces the light everywhere. But, I’ve also found that it makes that creamy, soft background really pop and when my hands aren’t frozen, it’s super fun to shoot in! Especially when people wanna have a little snowball fight 🙂

Thankfully the Cucci family were so flexible, we did have to take a small break because Violet’s little hands were so cold (as were mine!) But we had a blast, and although she wasn’t happy the whole time, she did love when mom and dad swung her! One happy baby picture is really all we needed 🙂

I love getting to know more and more people around the base, and I’m glad photography allows me to capture these moments with their families. Military life brings so many people to you, and takes so many away. I’ll look back at all of these photos one day and remember each and every family, and each and every story.

Thanks guys, for coming out and having fun with me!

Schumaker {Wedding}

I’m six photo sessions behind in blogging! But man, is it good to be busy.

First up is the Schumaker wedding. Oh man, did I have a blast at this wedding. I met Megan through another friend, and I can honestly say that I just love her. I did her and Josh’s engagement photos a little over a year ago, and she hired me for her wedding shortly after. She couldn’t have had a more perfect day. She was literally surrounded by love.

The session started out with her rehearsal dinner, and I’m so glad she picked the venue she did. I got to spend two glorious nights in MN, at the most beautiful little hotel ever. Thank you, Megan and Josh, for that. And the “barn” they were married in was a dream. So, so beautiful.

It was COLD the day of their wedding, and it was super wet, so we couldn’t shoot completely outside, but we figured it out and everything turned out perfectly. At the end of the day, Josh and Megan became husband and wife, which is really the only thing that mattered. I try to tell my brides to just “let it go”, because it really doesn’t matter what happens the day of the wedding except saying “I do”.

I literally laid on the steps during their wedding. I hate being in the way of people seeing the bride and groom actually get married, so I try to make myself as small as possible. I love the way I captured them at the alter in some of these pictures, with the floor as the foreground. Makes it so beautiful.

There’s really not much more I can say. Because I’ll just start crying. Weddings are special. They are a time to celebrate two people; but also family. Love. Friendship. Hope. Change. Megan and Josh, I wish you nothing but a lifetime of happiness. One of my favorite photos from the day was when Josh saw Megan. His mouth dropped to the floor, and no wonder, because she was absolutely stunning.

Be happy. Fight. Laugh. Dance. Smile. Cry. Go to bed angry. (Yes, I said that). Then wake up and know that sometimes, it’s ok to be mad. Because love is more than that. And your love will overcome all that. Swear. Kiss. Watch stupid movies together. Walk away. Come together. Be. Just be.

When life takes over, and schedules get busy. When kids come into the picture (or not). Just be. Don’t lose your love. Remember, every day, why you chose to marry each other. Because it was a choice. And a commitment. For better or worse. And there’s going to be a lot of “worse”. But the “better” makes up for it all.

And remember how much love you have in your circle. I saw it on your wedding day. Those people in your life, they are special people. You have a great “tribe”.

I’m so, so happy I got to be a part of your day. I love you both, and may God bless the future you have together!

Deneseus {Family Lifestyle}

This was my third shoot with the Deneseus family, I did their maternity and fresh 48 as well. And let me just say, I enjoy Olivia so much! She has so, so much personality. She’s a diamond in the rough, that’s for sure. And my, has Vivian grown. Seems like just yesterday I was going to the hospital room to meet her.

We had planned to do photos outside, but man did mother nature screw that plan up. It was pretty cold this morning, but thankfully they have an amazing tree in their yard and we ran out for a few snaps. Poor Vivian, she just wouldn’t look at me and boy, that little pout at the end! Olivia was “laughing” and it was the funniest sound!

Olivia got her cupcake, too, just like when we did the Fresh 48. Bribes work people! 🙂

I enjoy doing lifestyle photography the most out of all of it. Give me all the real smiles and giggles and not just the poses. I feel like when you just follow people around with your camera instead of posing them, the photos show true emotion and love. That photo of Vivian in her daddy’s arms just makes me swoon! He was rubbing her cheek and she gave just the smallest smile. And I got it! That doesn’t happen when I just tell dad to stand there!

Overall, I loved this session. I roll with whatever punches come my way with photography, the weather is always unpredictable. Buy your home is always a great backdrop for photos!

It’s Been A While

So it’s been a really long time since I blogged. I haven’t forgotten. It’s just that when I get done with one photo session, I move very quickly to another. I have been doing them back to back, so I just haven’t had time to sit down and blog about each individually. But, here are some of my favorites from recently. I got to shoot two of my really good friends, and some people I’ve met through this base that I just love getting to know better. I’ve gotten to shoot little Miss Audrey again. And she was so much fun!

I don’t really have words to express what I am feeling right now. It’s 1012 PM and I’m eating for the first time today, and I’m a little emotional. I love these people so much.

Courtney-thank you for always being there for me. For being my rock. There’s no one on this planet quite like you. You are an amazing mother, an amazing wife, and an amazing bestie. I keep hearing you tell me to take some time for myself, to slow down. I wish I could take your advice. But you know me, I just can’t.

Coti-thank you for being the person I always wanted to be. For being the strongest mama I know. For following your dreams, no matter the struggle. I love being a part of your life, I love helping relieve some stress in your life. You are such an inspiration for so many. You have a beautiful family, and I love that I get to hang with Henry every day. He’s my dude, my H-Dog. You are so much more than a friend. You’re a sister. I’m glad the military threw us together!

Shayna-Oh, Shayna. You came to me when I was just starting, and you’ve been with me ever since. You are such a beautiful soul, inside and out. From Audrey’s hat session, to her cake smash, to her mommy and daddy sessions. You’ve believed in me from day one, and I’ll be forever grateful for that.

I’m so thankful to have this tribe. To have women who believe in me, when I sometimes don’t believe in myself. I’m a busy mama, but aren’t we all? I couldn’t be more blessed to have these people in my life. They inspire me, every day. And man, do I have some good looking friends! 🙂

Kowalski {Family}

Oh my goodness, Mr. Dexter is just the cutest thing! I wish you all could have heard this little boy. Every time we snapped a picture, he would walk away and proclaim, “I’m done”. He did not want to be there at all, but that’s part of the fun of my job….figuring out how to make them sit and stay for a min. There may have been some Barney and promises of the park involved.

I LOVE taking pictures in the fall. There’s literally no “bad” place to do them. Find some trees and take your photos around 6PM right now and you’re golden! Literally, golden. My phone has been blowing up with session requests, and my heart is just so overjoyed. To have people tell me how much they love their sessions is just the best.

Especially when they don’t compare me to others. It’s so nice to just hear, “I love your work”. I study hard at this craft, and making people smile just makes my world go round. Finding that thing that a client finds hilarious is everything to me, because I want a natural smile, not a forced one.

I have three sessions this weekend, and I can guarantee you they will all be different. I usually go in with a list of what “poses” I want, but in the end I just capture the life. I capture the meltdowns (which don’t always get included, but I love to see anyway), the happy moments, the perfectly posed moments, and the in-between. The hugs, the kisses, the laughs. Those are what I shoot for.

So when I tell clients “dad put your arm here and mom put your arm here and baby you sit here”, and I pose you and make it all nice, I love it when I move back and something moves or someone gives someone a look like, “this lady for real?” and THAT’S what I capture. Those are the moments I want you to hang on your wall and make into Christmas cards. Just about anyone can photograph you standing still and smiling, it takes an artist to capture the in-between, the important moments. The kids throwing rocks into the pond and turning around to wave goodbye at you. The kids throwing leaves even though you said, “not yet, I’m not ready”. I get ready, and I get ready quick, because I’m an artist. And I love love love my job.

 

Hesse {Family}

Can we just discuss how PERFECT fall is? The colors, the leaves, the temperature. Maybe not the wind, but I’ll take it a little breezy if I can get these oranges and yellows and purples, any day. I am in love with this family session!

I would like to thank the Hesse family for being flexible! Since weather changes so quickly here, had we done it at the time scheduled, we may have gotten rained on. So a bit thank-you for coming out early!

And what a great, quick session it was. I try to work faster when kids are involved, they tend to not want to take photos for longer than 20/30 min. And you can see in the one, Sam just wasn’t having it. Had I known a pumpkin would make her happy, I may have given it to her sooner! 🙂 Thankful for grandma and grandpa, who stood behind me singing and probably making some silly faces to get the kids to smile. Always appreciate the help!

And after today’s session, I got to do something super fun! I went on a “junk” hop. I visited 10 antique stores today, in 6 hours. It was a TON of driving, but it was so much fun, and so relaxing. Hopefully I’ll win the grand prize for going to all the stores. I found some amazing items, and I enjoyed talking to local women business owners. It was really nice to see more of North Dakota (it’s not all flat!) too.

I may have to get back to Walhallah soon, it’s so hilly and amazingly beautiful right now.

Sundance Head {Concert}

Oh my goodness last night was fun! The base we are stationed at has put on two concerts since we’ve been here; Sundance Head this year and last year, David Cook. Both were amazing concerts! I got to do a meet and greet with both singers, which was super cool. My daughter got an autograph that she immediately put in her room when we got home (and soon after fell asleep…can we have concerts every night??)

I even got to do a shot of Fireball with Sundance after the concert! 🙂 He was super cool, we had a ton of fun. We love going out and doing these, supporting the base and the singers.

I don’t recall a base ever having concerts, except for when I was deployed. Then it was the USO that put them on. I don’t even have to know who the singer is, I pretty much love music and will go see just about anyone! It was nice to get the kids out of the house and running around too. They enjoyed the heck out of the music and the bouncy castle. Not so much the bees, the bees were terrible!

Overall, a great night. I may have had a little too much fun, but if you know me, you know I like to party. I’ll pretty much do it any day of the week. Judgmental people be damned!