I was inspired by the frost this morning, so I bundled up, grabbed my camera and my kitty and spent some time in the garden, looking closely. In the last 38 days, I've taken over 5,000 photographs for clients, and other than this batch, none for myself. I'm grateful to have had steady work the past few months, it makes the days pass quickly and makes me feel better about all the money we've spent on our home this fall. We started our kitchen renovation, which required our contractors to cut open the entire kitchen floor in order to access and repair the foundation (goodbye beautiful old growth hardwood 😢). Jeffery demoed the kitchen ceiling, restoring it to its original height (11 feet!) and our contractors removed the original chimney, installed a beam, and removed half the wall between our kitchen and dining. We now have a solid foundation, level subfloors, and a more open floor plan. And still so much left to do, most of which has to wait until January.

This time next week we'll be on the Big Island, and it will be our first time celebrating Christmas in Hawaii. My parents have lived in Hilo for over ten years, and other than the few times they've flown to California for Christmas, we haven't been together for the holiday in all that time. I'm looking forward to warmer weather, family time, the ocean, and my mom's garden. But I'm sure going to miss my kitties. 

henna, aki, mateo + helena // Chicago Family Photographer

Last spring, I flew to Chicago to photograph Naomi and David's engagement and to finally meet (in person) my friend and soul sister, Henna. We met online a few years ago, back when Teo was a toddler. She is one of the most inspiring people I know. You know the kind of people you just get, and they get you? And you stay up way too late talking because you have so much to tell one another? Those friendships are rare and valuable and worth nurturing.

Henna is head over heals in love with her husband, Aki, who moved to the U.S. from Croatia for college. He got into school in Arkansas and thought he was fluent in English until he arrived. ;) Mateo and Helena are two of the coolest kids I have met (and I've met a lot of kids) and they are expecting their third baby (another girl!) this spring, who will officially be the luckiest little lady on the planet. I adore these beautiful humans and look forward to a lifelong friendship.

We had less than thirty minutes from when the kids woke up to when Aki needed to leave for work to snap photos. So we whipped up some waffles in their GORGEOUS kitchen. It was really dark out that morning, so we left the overhead lights on, which is why many of the images are in black and white. 

I look forward to my next Chicago visit IMMENSELY. Or maybe we can rendezvous at Lake Tahoe? xo

East Bay Family Session // Tilden Park

Some favorites from a family session back in September. We explored the Tilden Park Botanical Garden and they reminded me why I love what I do. Though I do periodically travel to the Bay Area for photo shoots, I am trying to attract more business closer to home in Grass Valley (greater Sacramento area / Nevada County). If you have friends interested in having family photos taken, please send them my way!

Anna + Michael // Sneak Peek

It rained on Anna and Mike's wedding day. And not just a little bit of rain, more than I have ever seen on the Mendocino Coast. Sheets of water fell from the sky, pooled on the roads and made it scary to drive. Most of their guests came from out of town or flew across the county to be there, and Anna's main concern was that everyone make it in one piece. They had planned to get married in a field, and luckily, the Caspar Community Center could accommodate a last-minute indoor ceremony. So much love surrounded this couple, the rain stopped just before the sun went down, and these two got their moment in a field.