Thursday, September 30, 2010

Big boy beds. And epic failures.

Today we decided to move the little man into a "big boy" bed.
Actually, our kids share a room and my little lady's bed is my big brother's old day bed from back in the day that has a trundle bed underneath which now belongs to Jayden.
In honor of that occasion, I'll share with you my text message conversation with Ted during Jayden's nap time...

Me: Dude.  He seriously fell asleep.
Ted: Nice.  You da mom.
(Can we just draw attention to how hilarious my husband is?)
One hour passes...
Me: And then he coughed himself awake.
Me:  And then he pooped.
Me:  And then he attacked the blinds.
Me: And then he pulled everything out of the electrical outlets and either electrocuted himself or fell off the bed.  Still not sure which.
Me: And then I laid down with him until Stanley [our dog] decided to join us.
Me: And now he's scraping the walls.

Serenity now...

Oh well, at least he's cute.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Erin and Phil

It's one of my favorite questions to ask...
"What was your first thought when you met him?"
Her answer was sweet and cute and inserted hilarious anecdotes about how he was wearing a Speedo.  (Not actually true, however a hilarious joke they share)
Then I asked him what his first thoughts were when he saw her.
"Do you want to know the truth?"
Um, yeah.  Of course.
"I thought I'd really like to make out with her."
At this point I nearly fell off my step ladder from extreme amounts of laughter.
Well...he was honest.
Over time they became friends.  And instead of being some girl he wanted to make out with, she became the one he didn't want to live without.  He caught a vision for what life following Jesus could be like and wanted every step of that to be with her.  And she knew that she wanted to wake up every morning next to him... following dreams of serving others and living the crazy full life that Jesus promised.

Erin and Phil, you two are incredible.  Thank you for letting me into your lives and your relationship.  For sharing hilarious stories and for making me laugh so hard I nearly fell over.  For then sharing more about your dreams of caring for people and seeing how you're already doing it.  I am ridiculously thankful for you two.
And PS: Happy 2 year anniversary!

Yes, they are that adorable...

Can we say best series ever?

You two get at least 1,000 adorable points.

You two are fierce.


Her reaction to Phil's first thoughts...

Erin, you are gorgeous.  Just so you know.

Yes, yes he did.

And to see more from their couple's session, just click HERE.  And the music?  The amazing Andrea Bustin.  Who is releasing her new CD next month.  Sooooooooooo good.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Mark and Stacey

He loves her.
She loves him.
And it's totally obvious.  And all kinds of cute.
But it didn't start that way.
Because sometimes the very thing you're looking for is right in front of you.  And you still don't see it.
She knew.  And was smitten.
He couldn't see.
But after time, he couldn't take his eyes off of her.
He still can't.
And he wouldn't have it any other way.

Here's a glimpse of my time with one of my favorite couples in the world a few more years in.  And better than ever.
Mark and Stacey, our whole family loves you to pieces.  Thank you for sharing life with us.  And for being an inspiration for what love can look like.

Oh Stacey, you are all kinds of gorgeous

When I first saw this my jaw dropped and tears started to form.  Stacey, you're beautiful.  And this - this is why I love photography.


And to see more from their couples' session, check out their SLIDESHOW.  And the music?  Very much the ever-so-talented Devin Bustin.  And you can buy his music here...I'm SUCH a fan.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

At the end of the day...

At the end of the day, I love you beyond measure.
          I get butterflies when you give me that look that says you're still in love with me.
          I love late night talks with you.
          I couldn't think of a better person to spend the rest of my days with.
          I think of all the sacrifices you've made for me and I am overwhelmed.
          I love your smile.
          I would play Boggle with you until my eyes cross.
          I am ridiculously thankful that your work emails contain such words as "Yee-haw"
          I see who you are and cannot begin to fathom how lucky I am.

But sometimes, in the middle of the day...I get frustrated.  In a small moment I forget everything I know and I get upset.  And you?
You forgive me.  Before I even know to ask.
I love you.
And I'm sorry.
And I will love you until the end of my days...

PS:  I'm insanely proud of you.  Fo' realz.

Friday, September 17, 2010

Holiday Mini-Sessions

It's coming.
As crazy and far away as it sounds...
The season of steamy hot chocolate, peppermint mochas, fruit cake, cherishing, celebrations and Christmas cards will be on us before we know it.
So...  I decided to put together some special mini-sessions for the month of October in hopes of helping you cross one thing off your to-do list and helping you stop and enjoy the season this year.

So...what's a mini-session?
You (and possibly family members or good friends) + me + my camera + laughter, gorgeousness and all sorts of fun.
All in a half-hour.

But if you're like me, you like lists, so please, let me indulge you with a list of the information of what this includes:
30 minutes of shooting and hopefully lots of laughter
Up to 5 people (we recommend knowing these people, but we're open)
Private on-line gallery for you to peruse your awesome-ness
One master image burned to DVD for you to use for your Christmas Card blitz. 

And these mini-sessions are $150.

 Without further ado, I'll give you dates, times and locations to see if we can combine forces...

October 2 - Downtown Naperville
3:20 pm, 4 pm, 4:40 pm

October 9 - Downtown Wheaton
3:20 pm, 4 pm, 4:40 pm

October 23 - Herrick Lake Forest Preserve (or Downtown Naperville - depending on the desires of the first people to contact me for that date!)
3:20 pm, 4 pm, 4:40 pm

Things to keep in mind...
I think you're great.
This is first email, first serve...
 And my email:
I will be taking time off from November 11 - January 5th.  Please keep this in mind if you are wanting to schedule a session.

(and yes, this was composed when I was quite tired.  I hope you enjoy!)

And to leave you with some picture love of an incredible couple coming to the blog soon:

Sunday, September 12, 2010


I've gotten a lot of emails.
(Yes, it seems like I just tried to make myself sound popular.)
And they come from these incredible ladies.  Ladies who are beautiful on the inside and out.  And many of them say these nice, encouraging things that send my heart soaring.  They remind me of what an incredible gift it is to be a photographer.  But after all the warm fuzzies, there always seemed to be a statement like "I can't wait until I have an excuse for you to take pictures!"

Do not get me wrong.

I am honored.  Seriously.  Someone would already plan to entrust the beauty of their wedding or engagement or whatever special event and give me the opportunity to experience it and document it?  There just aren't words to put around how beautiful that is.  And it often moves me to tears.
Yep.  Totally just threw in a but...
I kept finding that I was also a little bit sad after reading those emails.  Because somewhere along the line it seems like we've communicated to women that if you're not a senior or you're not engaged, there's no point in having pictures.
This time is beautiful.  And no relationship or "right of passage" deems you more worthy of pictures than anyone else. 
So I got all passionate.  And soap-box-y.  And I knew.  I had to find a way to start doing this.  To help girls realize how beautiful they are.  To press pause on this sacred moment.  To be in awe of their stories.  To record this time for future generations.
And so I sent that random email.
I knew her loosely.  The truth is, I had heard all this "oh my goodness she is so wonderful.." over and over.  And then I met her.  And totally knew everything I'd heard was right.  And so I sent her a random email.  And asked her to model for me.  I was all, "I know you don't even know me, but can I take pictures of you?"  And probably appeared stalkerish.
The truth? 
I wanted to meet her.  (For more than 5 minutes.)  There's just something incredible about her.
And...I wanted to find someone that I didn't know well to just be my guinea pig as I started figuring out what this looks like.
And she said yes.
Even though I may have appeared stalkerish.

So here it goes...  Chasing a vision.

PS: Emily - oh my word.  You are so wonderful.  I enjoyed hanging out with you SOOOOOOOO much.  I still can't believe you're in Greece?!?  Thank you for sharing yourself with me.  Your stories.  Your heart.  Your plans to one day adopt.  I left on cloud 9.  And I'm so excited to go get coffee with you (if you're okay with it) when you get back!!!

Emily, you are adorable

And gorgeous.

So much cuteness going on here


One of my faves.