I know we are all busy and sometimes just getting through the day. These moments, happening right before us, are worth documenting. This stage, whatever it is, is part of your story. Those times of togetherness. Seemingly ordinary, but so very meaningful. The way she clings to your hip and kisses your face. The knowing glances shared over all the silliness. The special, little details like tiny toes and tight, blonde curls. How he laughs hysterically, while snuggling in close. That growing bump, so full of new life. Through the chaos, we are all making memories each day, as a family. The smirks and laughs, pouts and cuddles, those special nuances that are unique to your family. I would love make these tangible treasures with you. Keepsakes of moments shared together, in beautiful light, that you will always have to look back on.
This is the last installment from my time at The Magically Mundane Workshop with Daphne Mae Photography! Sausilito, California was absolutely beautiful and the families that we met were just so wonderful and I really dragged it out for as long as possible! Since these photos were taken, this adorable family welcomed a new baby boy!! I think it's fun to look back on that time of anticipation and to remember the hope and wonder of what was to come!
We had such a full visit to Buffalo in July. We really enjoyed our time hanging out with friends and visiting family. I cannot tell you the number of times I have heard someone in our family say they miss something about our time in Buffalo, since we have been back in Orlando! There are just so many people we love and we come home with such great memories.
While we were in Buffalo, I was fortunate enough to have the opportunity to meet with the most wonderful families for summer photo sessions. I am super behind on blogging, but you have to start somewhere.. Below are a few of my favorites from this adorable family of three!
Erika and Tony truly had such an amazing day filled with joy and so much love. Their day was unique to them and filled with several personal touches! The girls began the day Studio 1404 on Hertel. Everyone looked gorgeous! Erika's half up look was the perfect compliment to her pale blush and tulle BHLDN Ricarda wedding gown. As they continued to get ready, Erika wore an ivory, satin and lace custom robe created from her mother's wedding gown, by Unbox the Dress. It was so lovely and such a sweet sentiment! Her mother helped Erika get into her own wedding dress that was absolutely stunning, featuring a deep V and feminine floral details. Erika paired this with an heirloom veil that her mother wore on her wedding day, updating the comb with a modern, jewel encrusted version. Erika's mom surprised her with simple and elegant diamond earrings to wear on her special day. Her look was completed with blush toned Badgley Mischka Vivien Flats, accented with floral crystals for the just the right amount of sparkle! Erika was such a dream that both her mother and father teared up when they saw her. It was really so sweet! The bridesmaids looked fabulous in their mix and match BHLDN gowns in whipped apricot. Erika chose to get ready at her parents home and we took photos with the girls in her favorite place, their beautiful garden backyard. Tony chose to get ready at the North Buffalo Ice Rink, a place where he has spent so much time, it feels like home! He and his groomsmen had access to the lobby, rink and locker rooms. Getting ready together and laughing as they might before a hockey game was actually a really fun idea!!
The bride and groom were married in a abbreviated Catholic ceremony, in front of their closest family and friends at St. Joseph University Parish in Buffalo, NY. After the ceremony, Erika and Tony drove away as husband and wife in a white vintage Rolls Royce. They met their beloved pup, Murphy, at Albright-Knox Art Museum for a few quick pictures and were off to cocktails at the iconic Hotel Henry. Erika and Tony have a love of history and architecture so this was a natural choice for a location to celebrate their nuptials. Daulton, of The Refined Host organized the entire day and kept everything running smoothly with the help of Made by Anatomy who served as the most wonderful Bridal Valet. As guests walked into the room for cocktails they passed the cutest, hand drawn pictures and encouraging words for the couple from Erika's students while listening to the Buffalo String Quartet Play. The very talented Flowers by Johnny, also a family friend, transformed the ballroom into a dream space full of candlelight and the prettiest florals. Pale peach, blush and ivory roses, white hydrangeas and the loveliest greenery topped each table in tiered arrangements. Marissa at B Sweet Designs worked her magic again with the dessert table she created! Glittering gold donuts, strawberry and mango macaroons, cake pops and so much more expertly designed and displayed looking almost to good to eat!
Silver Arrow Band got the party started right away with lots of dancing! Erika's father gave the most heartfelt welcome speech where he told their guests "Erika has this way about her. She just makes everyone feel good and loved when they are with her...I see how she is, when she is with Tony. He just makes her so happy." Oh my Lord, it is so true!! You can just feel the happiness exploding from these two and I don't think there was a dry eye in the crowd! Erika's sister and Tony's brother gave endearing and humorous speeches that were so meaningful to the couple. After dinner, it was back to the dance floor. Erika and Tony and all of their guests enjoyed their time singing and dancing and posing in the Photo Booth. The gorgeous cake, by Blue Eyed Baker, was rolled onto the dance floor and cut, providing an additional treat for everyone.
Erika and Tony are the nicest, most patient couple. They, along with their family and friends, welcomed us with open arms. We were so honored to be a part of such a memorable day, with such kind and lovely people. Thank you, from the bottom of our hearts, and Congratulations!! Mary and I hope you had the best time in the Turks and Caicos!!
Thank you to the fabulous team of vendors who worked so hard to make
Erika + Tony's wedding day so special!
Venue + Catering: Hotel Henry
Planning + Event Design: The Refined Host
Dress: BHLDN Ricarda
Shoes: Badgley Mischka Vivien Flats
Robe: Unbox the Dress
Videography: Darren from Jacquelyn Daley Photography
Floral Design: Flowers by Johnny
Rentals: All Seasons Tents and Events
Vintage Car + Transportation: Advantage Limousine
Invitations: Rust Belt Love
Day-Of Paper Goods: Paige by Design
Band: Silver Arrow Band
Cocktail Musicians: Buffalo String Quartet
Cake: Blue Eyed Baker
Dessert Table: B Sweet Designs
Bridal Valet: Made by Anatomy
Hair + Makeup: Studio 1404
Photography: Rooted Love Photography
Second Shooter: Mary O'Sullivan
I had the opportunity to do something really fun with some friends in the beauty industry last month! We partnered for a Mommy Makeover Giveaway in the Orlando area. One special momma received hair color, cut and style by Jessica Travis from The Hive Beauty Bar, glam makeup with Caroline Throneburg, Makeup Artist and a motherhood photo session with yours truly!
Jennifer was our giveaway winner! She went for a bohemian 60's vibe, channelling Brigitte Bardot with her half up bouffant and gorgeous long waves. Her look was completed with beautiful makeup inspired by the Mad Men series and a floral, cutout maxi dress. Momma was beyond stunning!!
After being pampered, Jennifer and her son, Weston, met up with me for their photoshoot. Our outdoor plans got rained out so we relocated the shoot to Jennifer's new home, which was just perfect! Despite the hurricane like rain and complete darkness that Mother Nature conveniently provided, we found some light!
Jennifer and her little boy are really so wonderful. They have such a sweet, playful bond that was so much fun to be able to watch and photograph. I hope the memories that were made on this rainy afternoon are ones they will always treasure!
A huge thank you to Jessica Travis and Caroline Throneburg for making this experience amazing!!
Hair: Jessica Travis @thehivebeautybar
Makeup: Caroline Throneburg @carolinealice_mua
That coastline, the movement, the colors, this sweet family!!
Below are a few of my favorites from Lauren + Vern's family session at The Magically Mundane Workshop with the ever talented Daphne Mae Photography in Sausalito, CA!
You know you are in a photographer home when the doggies that greet you are named "Bokeh" and "ISO"!! Nanette and Karl are photographers in the Naples area, their work is just beautiful! I met Nanette on Instagram and was so excited to meet up with her in real life! I feel so honored and just over the moon happy that I was invited into their home during this special time in their lives. Their playful little boy, Teddy, is full of curiosity and so adorable with his big blue eyes and blonde curls. He seems to be ready for this big brother thing! These days leading up to the new baby are full of playful moments, complete with tickles and snuggles for Teddy and his fur buddies while they await the arrival of this little newcomer. The sweetest of anticipations!
Michaela and Jamie are just the sweetest couple and I love their adorable little pup, Chewie. Any Starwars fans out there? My boys thought is was the best name ever, because according to them, he looks like a miniature version of the real character. I am so appreciative for Michaela and Jamie' s flexibility in meeting me while I was back in Buffalo. I was checking the weather all day before my flight from Orlando, and the weather outlook was not favorable, to say the least. The temperature also dropped 20 degrees on this particular day. Luckily, it cleared up and we made it happen in this beautiful area full of spring blooms! A.k.a. not the original, chosen location. I really don't think it would matter where they where photographed, they are such a kind and lovely couple and that would show through anywhere! I can hardly wait for their wedding in January!!!
Natalie + Adam had the most beautiful wedding day. It was easy to see how much they are loved by the outpouring of friends and family from near and far. Everyone was so kind, eager to support the lovely couple and to celebrate in their union. And there was no lack of celebration! Natalie and Adam made it a priority to ensure their guests had a good time, and what a good time it was! Exhale Events ensured everything ran smoothly and on time, leaving everyone else to simply enjoy themselves.
The wedding day began with sunshine and temperatures in the mid 50s, which made for a pretty much perfect Spring day in Buffalo, NY. The girls started their day with hair at Fawn and Fox Salon and makeup by Jaime Ruggiero. Everyone looked amazing!! Natalie was a dream in her simple yet stunning, form fitting, ivory gown from Lovely Bride NYC. A touch of beading added the perfect amount of sparkle. Natalie completed her look with a custom, cathedral length veil, ivory heels and diamond earrings from her mother. The guys kept it classic in black tuxedos with black bowties, accented with crisp white pocket squares. Each bridesmaid wore an ivory, a-line gown which may be my new favorite wedding look! Maureen's Buffalo Wholesale Flower Market created gorgeous bouquets bursting with the fluffiest ivory peonies, roses and fresh greenery. As a loving tribute to her late father, Natalie had her dad's gold wedding band sewn into her bouquet. His memory, along with that of Adam's father, was very much present the entire day. The love that Natalie and Adam share for their loved ones was inexplicably palpable.
Natalie and Adam were wed in a traditional Catholic ceremony at Saint Louis Roman Catholic Church in front of all of their closest family and friends. After they stated their intentions and shared in the Eucharist together, it was off to the Japanese Gardens since the cherry blossoms were in bloom! This was a popular location as there were parades of people, weddings, well wishers and others enjoying the Spring blossoms. We were able to squeeze in for a few photos of the wedding party and some bride and groom portraits and it was well worth the time we waited for a clear spot!
When we arrived back at The Greenhouse Room of the Hotel at The Lafayette, the loft style space had been transformed. White table clothed tables were adorned with beautiful white blooms and greenery amidst golden candlelight, creating a classic and romantic atmosphere. Perhaps the star of the culinary show was the unbelievable dessert table, styled by B Sweet Designs. Guests would wander by, stating "it's too pretty to take anything off of it." Cookies, cake pops and loads of other sweets surrounded the statement piece, an exquisite, ivory wedding cake topped with purple and green succulents, created by Romano's Italian Bakery. This delectable cake tasted just as good as it looked!
Heartfelt speeches, sprinkled with bits of humor had everyone reminiscing. Natalie and Adam danced their first dance to a lovely rendition of "You Make Loving You Easy" played by Silver Arrow Band. Lighthearted Mother/Daughter and Mother/Son dances followed and then it was time for everyone to cut loose. The band played, everyone danced, and one guest even played his own beer bottle saxophone. There were so many fun highlights at this reception. The drinks were flowing and the party continued until late into the night. My heart was just so full as I flew home to Orlando the next morning. It was a wonderful Mother's Day weekend!
Congratulations to Natalie + Adam! You guys are so loved!! We hope you had an amazing honeymoon in Hawaii!!!
Venue: Hotel at The Lafayette
Church: Saint Louis Roman Catholic Church
Event Coordinator: Exhale Events
Hair: Fawn and Fox Salon
Makeup: Jaime Ruggiero
Wedding Dress and Veil: Lovely Bride NYC
Bridesmaid Dresses: Brideside
Florals: Maureen's Buffalo Wholesale Flower Market
Cake: Romano's Italian Bakery
Dessert Table: B Sweet Designs
Band: Silver Arrow Band
Rings: Hofert Jewelers
Invitations: Ashwood Ink
Save the Date: Rustbelt Love
Transportation: Simply the Best Limo Service
Second Shooter: Mary O'Sullivan
I was recently asked, "What does being a mom mean to you?"
It sounds pretty straightforward, but the words did not immediately come to me. My first inclination was something sarcastic, like "being a referee who shuttles children around while running on caffeine." But really, it's this beautiful gift that is continually changing. It seems that way to me at least. Let's be honest, it is certainly not always sunshine and rainbows, but looking back on old photographs and videos, or even reflecting a little at the end of each day, I really just feel so lucky to have the opportunity to be a mother. My kids are growing up and as that happens my role in their lives continues to change. First, I was the mommy who nourished and nurtured my babies. I held them, fed them, rocked them, stared at them for hours. As they are growing, my role is evolving into something a little different, but still wonderful. I have these inquisitive little seekers of information, always asking questions and trying to figure out the world for themselves. I do not always have the answers, but (with the help of Google) we learn together. They now hold my hand, as we walk together. The feed themselves and are learning to clean up after themselves. We do travel to a lot of activities and there is arguing. Sometimes I stay up too late so I'm tired. But our conversations are interesting and laughs are plentiful. We are together and that is what matters.
To me, motherhood is a journey. I believe we have been blessed with this opportunity to love on and raise good and kind humans who can make a positive impact in the world. We’re all doing it differently and that’s ok. As mothers, we are not perfect and realizing this is freeing. We can allow ourselves a little grace and know we will not always do everything correctly. We are all doing our best and from a place of love.
These images were made at The Magically Mundane Workshop with Daphne Mae Photography. I flew from Orlando, FL for a weekend full of creativity and learning in SausiIito, CA. It was such an inspiring experience with some of the sweetest families and very talented photographers turned friends. I am truly so grateful for the opportunity to have been a part of it.
Even when it's a 90 degree day in Florida, there is a nice breeze along the beach during the Spring. This made LaPlaya on Naples Beach, the perfect location for Peyton's Senior Portraits. It is somewhere that's close to Peyton and family's heart. Not a shabby place to work either, the whole property is stunning!
Happy Graduation to all of the 2019 Seniors out there!! To any of the mamas out there who may feel like they missed their opportunity, it is never too late to get those Senior Portraits done. They are not in college quite yet.. I know you will cherish these tangible memories a few years from now, when the house is just a little too quiet!!