san francisco engagement session | phoenix destination wedding photographer

Every man should be allowed to love two cities, his own and San Francisco. Gene Fowler

We just love San Francsico. I'm from Boston and Keith is from New York City - so there is some pretty tough competition. San Francisco seems to embody the quaintness of Boston with the big city feel of New York all at the same time.

We were so excited when the above couple chose Keith to photograph their wedding this coming November. Rhonda Rush of Impact Events is the wedding planner for their big day. She just knew we would be a perfect fit for one another - and she couldn't have been more right! We all met for the first time at The Arizona Biltmore a few months back. We decided then that engagement session in San Francisco, their hometown, would be a lot of fun.

The bride is a native Arizonan and the groom is a native San Franciscan, by way of Ireland. The city means a lot to their family. The house that they currently live in was the groom's family home growing up. The home, the family and the neighborhood was what this session was all about.

They decided that the perfect starting point for the engagement/family session was Twin Peaks, very close to their home. What a spot. 360 degree sweeping views of the city and San Francisco Bay. The perfect day. So beautiful. (I know, I'm like a love sick school girl, I just adore San Francisco!)

From Twin Peaks - the session headed back to the home and neighborhood. Their adorable little boy is just such a little cutie, a beautiful family. A really enjoyable family session full of love, laughter and happiness. Makes me smile.

There is nothing better from our point of view then having a small glimpse into a couple's life together. We are really looking forward to being part of their special day in November.

{Oh and I really get that expression about leaving your heart in San Francisco. I leave a little part of mine every time I visit!}

 

Gabriella's 5th birthday | scottsdale newborn portrait photographer

Gabby turns 5 today! My baby is really not a baby anymore....

I look at this picture and a flood of emotions overcome me. I could cry. I remember that day (2.1.07) like it was yesterday. The delivery was quick. The doctor handed me my little girl just after this image was captured. She was so warm, so wet, so beautiful. This photo takes me right back to that special moment. I have a lump in my throat.

When I look back at all the photographs Keith has taken of our children - I can easily say that my favorites are of their births. I have documentaries of both our girl's births that are so beautiful, so thoughtful, so unbelievably special.

I am so fortunate to have such a fabulous husband, my girls have the best dad in the whole world and we all benefit because he also happens to be an amazing photographer.

Thank you Keith. I love you.

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Henry's Hope | family photography phoenix

I love my kids, but every once in awhile I feel overwhelmed raising them. There are times when I am impatient or tired or think life is challenging. But then I try to put it all in perspective and realize that these frustrating moments are fleeting, just growing pains for Keith and I as parents and Isabella and Gabby as kids.  This is stuff every parent goes through at one time or another. And some parents go through much more.

A recent email reminds me of how lucky we are. These tiny little blips in our family life are so inconsequential to what some family's grapple with on a daily basis.

A few years ago, Keith arrived at a family portrait session - 3 children and their parents. The kids were just adorable. As he was having fun photographing them - the parents mentioned that their little one, Henry had a debilitating condition called mitochondrial disease. The little guy could not eat solid food - he was fed through a feeding tube. "In his first three years, Henry had 12 surgeries and procedures, dozens of diagnostic exams, over one hundred doctors’ appointments (with over a dozen specialists), hundreds of physical therapy sessions, taken several medicines, and the list goes on.  And, of course, he had (and has) gear.  He has a feeding pump, a nebulizer, feeding tubes and other stuff, an IV pole, bags that depressurize his stomach, a back pack to carry his pump, leg braces, and . . . .  You get the picture."

That's about the time Keith took the above photo of Henry.

Since that time, Henry's older brother has also been diagnosed with the same disease. Yet somehow, the parents have found the strength to start a foundation called Henry's Hope, adopt another child (2 of Henry's siblings are adopted), write a book called Three Candles and help other family's with children that  have life-threatening conditions.

The email was from Henry's dad - just keeping us up to date on the family and sending us a link to the Three Candles website.

Talk about putting it all into perspective.

 

 

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class of 2011 | downtown phoenix senior portrait session

It's funny, ever since I have had my own children I get a certain sense of nostalgia in all sorts of different situations. When we are photographing a wedding and it is time for speeches, I invariably start tearing up when I hear the parents or siblings or best man tell stories about the bride or groom - I think of how that day is going to come when my heart overflows reminiscing about stories from my children's childhood and how proud I am. Or when we are photographing a family portrait session, I can envision my children running around having a great time having their photograph taken and how important those photos are going to be years from now when the parents look back at them. Or when an engagement session takes place, the couple's interaction demonstrates their love for one another - the love that may or may not one day lead to them having children but regardless, they are on a beautiful path together. Or the senior portrait session that reminds me in its simplicity of the beauty of youth and how quickly childhood gets away from us as parents.

When I first looked at these pictures - as we were about to start editing, I began thinking about this boy's mom. How proud she is. That her little boy had grown up to be a self assured young man who loves his dirt bike and loves his skateboard and will happily be attending ASU in a few short months.

And then of course I started thinking about me. That one day, my two little girls are going to graduate from high school and be grown ups. That made me both happy and sad.

When the images were ready, I sent mom a link to the slideshow. I couldn't help but mention this to her. As we chatted on the phone we discussed what a bittersweet time this must be. As a parent you must be so pleased to have reached this milestone, to have raised a child to be so proud of. You are so happy that they are going off to college and wish them all the success in the world -their amazing future lies before them. But somewhere in your heart there is that little pang of sadness, your little baby is gone forever.

Oh my! I can already feel the pain in my heart! (and I have about 12 years to go....)

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a beautiful little girl | phoenix portrait photographer

Gabby's birtday party was a few weeks back. She decided that she had to have her party at Arcadia Park in Phoenix. One might wonder how she came to this big decision. Well one day we decided to stop by that park, we had never been there before. She noticed a hot pink T Rex pinata hanging under one of the ramadas. It was then and there that she decided her next birthday party would be at Arcadia Park. Because of her love of dinosaurs - she had made her decision.

Keith brings his camera everywhere. As a mom, it makes me really happy having a children's portrait photographer as my husband because I have loads and loads of great pictures of my children doing absolutely everything. For this party, he decided to set up a mini photo set to take pictures of all Gabby's friends. Just one light and a battery pack. The pictures came out great.  A great little thank you for the parents.

This particular picture I thought was just beautiful. This little girl really did not want her picture taken. But with a little coaxing she was kind enough to go along.

Keith seems to have that effect on children - he can always persuade them with the camera and is always able to get a great shot.

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the live photo booth | photobooths phoenix

When we were asked to do The Live Photo Booth at a 5th birthday party - we knew it would be both fun and full of adorable children. This is just a sampling of the great kids from a super cool birthday party at the Kids Zone in the US Airways Arena last week. In case you couldn't guess, the theme of the party was basketball and the Phoenix Suns.

The Live Photo Booth is a hit at every event. But there is something so adorable about a photo booth at a child's birthday party. After all, our photo booth originated at a 3rd birthday party many, many years ago. We were invited to a friend's birthday party - so Keith decided to bring a backdrop, some lights and a camera. He set up a very simple photo booth and the kids just LOVED it. The Live Photo Booth was born.

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