Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Blau Family | Orange County Family Session

This sweet family just grew and it was the perfect time for some updated family portraits! 
Congratulations Blau family! Thank you for letting me capture these moments for you.

Friday, November 17, 2017

The Annual Oak Glen Trip

I almost forgot these photos were sitting on a memory card. Oops.

I am glad we finally found a chilly Monday to explore the Fall fun in Oak Glen. This means donuts, exploring the town and shops, cider and apple tasting and soaking up the minimal color Southern California has. It's even less this year than last. But, we'll take what we can get.

It was fun to bring our pup this year. He particularly enjoyed hanging with the sheep.
It's crazy to think that next year we will bring a 9 month old with us! I am loving these moments as the two of us in this season.

Tuesday, October 31, 2017

Halloween Traditions

Most years we celebrate Halloween with pumpkin carving & pumpkin pasta.
I stole the pasta tradition from my sweet friend Joyce who made it every year for our small group. Grab the recipe here (it's savory and delicious).

When Charles and I were dating we began combining it with pumpkin carving and we continued the tradition this past Sunday night for date night. It felt so sweet as I looked back at the first year we carved together. I lived in a lovely little house on the same block we just moved onto. I have such fond memories of that street and season and it is so special to build memories in a new way. Home finally feels settled and sitting across from each other to share a meal is our new favorite. I knew we were missing out on that element the past 4+ years but we love it so, so much.

It is crazy to think this time next year we'll be carving a pumpkin with a kiddo (well, for our kiddo).

Happy Halloween (and finally Fall weather), friends! 

Look how happy he is (ps, he made that table!!). I love these moments. 

Thursday, October 19, 2017

The power behind how you "Me Too". #ThriveThursday

If you're on social media much I am sure you have seen the "Me Too" statements spreading unity in the experiences many of us have had in regards to sexual assault and abuse. I have so many thoughts as I see people share their "Me Too" statement. I want to be so grateful for the awareness being created but with each statement I see I wonder, "Have they felt truly heard in their hurt? Do the 'likes' make them feel understood? Have they experienced healing?".

Me too have always been words I've stood behind. There is such power when people share authentically and create a safe space for people to say, "Me too".. "I struggle with that too. I've had doubts in that area too. That has happened to me too. I've felt alone in that too."

I don't know about you but the most meaningful conversations for me are ones where I feel safe to share and others feel safe enough to offer. There is a mutual "me too" that takes place. There is a sigh of relief. There is empathy, feeling known and feeling understood. And there is healing.

I'm always hesitant to jump on the trend bandwagon.
The internet is such a powerful place for people to experience community. But it has a downside.
I am sure for many it is healing to see others express what they have experienced. There is comradery. But, I fear the other side; isolation.

Sure, I could post me too. I've have my share of violating, degrading experiences.
But there's a lot of levels of "Me too" in the regard.

So, here's my point.
If you've dealt with moments or ongoing pain in this area, please don't let this be your only space to be heard and known.
If you've never shared those words across a couch or table with a trusted friend, mentor or counselor, let this be the time you are encouraged to do so.
You indeed are not alone.
You deserve to be heard, understood and supported.

Don't let your connection stop at some loose internet understanding of mutual pain.
Let this be the push to have meaningful connection, whatever your "Me Too" may be.

I'm here, friends.
Reach out to a trusted person.
Find a local counselor resource like CIFT.

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Creative Family Moments | Capture what matters.

Maybe you have a spot you love to take your annual family photos.. but maybe you've been looking to mix it up. So, how can you get creative this season and capture what matters?

I've got some ideas for you that I think are fun and worthwhile. Or maybe they spark your own idea! Whatever it is, choose something you love and will love for a long time.
  • Holiday Traditions: Pumpkin Carving, Choosing your Christmas Tree, Holiday Decorating and more! I love these traditions and they create meaningful moments.
  • Brunch or baking: Do you have a tradition involving family recipes, favorite treats or simple mornings? These are beautiful.
  • Firsts: If you've got a new little one, everything is new! Or maybe you moved into a new home or got married. There are so many firsts taking place in your life and each one is meaningful. 
  • Halloween Costumes: Let those littles put them on and run around! I fully support costumes for Mom and Dad, too! 
  • Your favorite moments: Whatever they are. Simple, profound, everyday or extraordinary. They matter, make them last! I'd love to hear your ideas and favorite moments to capture! 
If you've got something you'd love to document, I'd love to be a part of your memories.

Here's to a fun holiday season ahead!

Thursday, October 5, 2017

Fall Moments: A Checklist

Every year when Fall rolls around I am pumped! This is my time, people. Well, now through Winter. I am all about cooler weather, festivities, traditions, my love for pumpkin goes way back and there is so much to decorate for and celebrate.

I can get a little caught up in wanting to do all the things during these seasons. So I thought I'd make a little list of the things I want to enjoy and the moments I want to spend with people. Otherwise I may not do them or I might feel like I am still missing out. This way I can soak them up with presence. There's even a bit more urgency as I know these will be so special with a little yet I want to take them in fully as our last season with just us two.

So, here's it goes...

Fall Checklist: Moments to soak up.
  • Put out Fall decor September 1
  • Enjoy a Coffee Bean Pumpkin Blended when it arrives
  • Make the pilgrimage to Trader Joe's for all things pumpkin 
  • Enjoy Fall brunch at home: Pumpkin waffles, coffee, cool mornings
  • Go to Oak Glen for apple treats, photos and Fall colors
  • Carve pumpkins
  • Pass out candy to the cute Trick-or-Treaters 
  • Host a Fall party 
  • Make the annual pumpkin pasta dinner
  • Sit by the fire-pit with warm beverages and delicious dessert 
  • Write notes of gratitude 
  • I want to try the pumpkin apple sauce recipe a friend just shared 
What am I missing?
What are your favorite ways to soak up this Season? Do tell!

Friday, September 29, 2017

Anderson Newborn | In Home Family Session

 Sweet baby Ethan made his entrance to the world this month! I really love getting to capture these beautiful moments for families. Babies change and grow so fast and these new moments are so worth documenting! 

Thank you David & Wendi for inviting me in to be a part of this time for your family and Congratulations!

How great is this little smirk?