Wednesday, January 17, 2018


I was so excited when Anne contacted me and told me her whole family was going to be in town for Thanksgiving weekend and wanted to know if we could work out a time to take an extended family picture! YES!!! I love extended family pictures. I have a big family and I LOVE when it works out that we can have a picture with all of us.

Extended family pictures are HARD! It's hard to work out everyone's schedules and wardrobe and location. It's hard to get everyone to agree on anything, but I LOVE the connections made during extended family sessions. I love watching grown children interact with each other, especially if they have children of their own. {and most especially if they are struggling with their children when they are usually perfect angels! Believe me, I've seen it all before!!} I love seeing how children interact with their parents, of every generation. I like to watch who the boss is, and who the baby is and which one is the most spoiled. {Everyone knows who that is in my family!!!} I love watching grandma and grandpa with their grandchildren. I love the interaction, the love, the teasing, the unity.

They are some of my very favorite sessions, and this was no exception. I LOVE this one. The colors are beautiful, the location is beautiful and it was such a pretty fall day.

Wednesday, January 10, 2018


I've known Alexa since she was just a baby. I started watching her at my house when she was about 8 or 9 months old and she was a part of our life for many years. She came everywhere with us and did everything with us, it was kinda just like having another one of my own. I stopped watching her when Tyler was born, so it's been a long time since I've seen her - except on social media, which I LOVE!

I was so excited when Danyelle contacted me and asked me to take their pictures. I wasn't able to blog this before now because it was a gift for Christmas - and one of my FAVORITE gifts to hear you're giving to your loved ones!!

We had to re-schedule these 3 or 4 times because of bad weather. But we were patient, and we waited until we had a GREAT day. The sun was shining, the lighting was GORGEOUS and they were such great sports about taking pictures together. {you might not be able to say that about all siblings!} When I started editing them, I was in LOVE with them all!! I had a hard time narrowing it down, because there were SO many great ones - and I don't remember ever looking this gorgeous back in high school!! 

Thanks Lex and Tyler for such a great photo session, I can't believe how much you've both grown and I hope for ALL the best things for both of you and your futures!!

Tuesday, January 9, 2018


Thank you just doesn't really convey my gratitude for the amazing year I had last year, but really THANK YOU from the bottom of my heart!! That's 80 SESSIONS guys, EIGHTY!!!! My heart is bursting at your love and support of me and my small business.

One of the questions they ask you in the business class I've been taking is "What does YOUR success look like?" Meaning, what is a success to YOU? Maybe you want to work your business full time, maybe you want to increase your number of sessions. Maybe you just want to do one more session a month. Maybe you want to make enough to support your family full time? Or maybe you just want to make some fun money?

I've been thinking a lot about my business goals and what I want to achieve. I've been thinking about my clients and who I want to serve. I've been trying to decide how I want my business to run for me and for my life.

First, Let me just say this past year was a HUGE SUCCESS for me!!! HUGE!!! I never dreamed when I started these classes how much my life would change. I never dreamed I would go from 20 sessions to 80 sessions in less than a year. I never dreamed that I would find so much joy and confidence in a few photography classes. AND, I didn't even take the classes until JULY, so really this is just HALF of a year! {Only the first 5 sessions were before July}. 75 sessions in 6 months!!

HUGE growth and HUGE success for me.

SO, where do I go from here?  I want to keep growing and I want to keep learning. I was also EXTREMELY busy the last six months, and I will continue to work a full time job, so this might be more than I can handle every year. {thankfully my busy seasons are at opposite times of the year!}

My full time job is managing a busy tax office and it's the beginning of our crazy schedule. I also live in Chiberia, so you might not see as much from me in the next few months - don't worry, I still have a LOT of blog posts to catch up on, so there will be plenty of pretty pictures to look at!!

One change I've made is I've increased my prices. I want to better serve you. I been doing constant training and have learned a lot about making your session a great experience and giving you a great product.  I am available to help you with everything including outfit choices, locations, timing, challenging children, natural smiles, weather, posing, etc. I want to give you all the tools you need to not just like your pictures, but to LOVE your pictures. I want you to feel amazing and have an amazing experience working with me and I'm dedicated to learning everything I can so that you will always remember these memories we are making.

I will still offer mini sessions throughout the year and I will give my current clients first dibs at scheduling mini sessions. They will be on a date and time chosen by me, at one of my favorite locations. These sessions will be budget friendly and a limited number will be available each time. 

You can see my new pricing HERE

Thank you again for supporting me, for letting me capture your families and for telling your friends about me. Each time I get a referral from a client, I am reminded once again how important you all are in my life and in my business. Thank you for putting your trust in me.

Bring it on 2018! I can't wait to see what you have in store for me!!

Friday, December 22, 2017


I love working with families and I love watching kids grow up and have kids of their own. This is the daughter of a family we have known since we first moved to Illinois almost 17 years ago. {WOW, that's a long time!} I've known her for many years and I got to take their family pictures last year in the FREEZING cold. This year it was much warmer, but not without it's challenges.

They had been working all day on a house project and were running late, one of the kids couldn't get their clothes out of the room they were in, dad wasn't able to get there at the beginning, sisters arms were too cold, so mom gave her jacket to her.....and YOU GUESSED IT, they turned out great. I try really hard to keep my cool during pictures and help work out all of the challenges that I know come with pictures. I know how stressful it is when you have something planned and your day doesn't go as you would have liked. I know it's A LOT of work to get family pictures taken! I just want you to know that I'm on your side, that I get it and that I will do everything I can to help ease the stress of family pictures!!

These kids were SO fun to work with, dad wasn't there yet, so I said, no worries, let's start taking some pictures of each of the kids.....oh man, some of them are funnier than others. This "dabbing" picture happened before I even knew what was going on....he's a sneaky one!!

Then we got the kids all together just as the sun was setting and got some adorable ones with just them.

Dad got there just in time to grab one of the whole family. It might not have been the ideal year for pictures, but it's always fun to look back and say, "remember that year that (blank) happened?" I love how photos help us remember those important family memories, both the good and the bad.

Thank you for trusting me to capture your family again this year. Thank you for making it work. I promise that these memories are worth the investment!!

Monday, December 18, 2017


Since moving to Illinois almost 17 years ago, we have rarely been able to travel home for the holidays. It's too expensive and too much hassle to take everything home with us. One of the first years we lived here we became friends with the Solis family and have been included in their family events for many, many years. It's just normal now that we are part of the holiday planning and it's weird when it doesn't work out for us to be with them - like the year my mom died and we were in Utah for the funeral.

These pictures were taken in an open field right next to her sisters house on Thanksgiving day. We planned to just snap a couple pictures to get one for a good print and a Christmas card. I LOVE how the colors all go together. I love the golden sunlight and the beautiful field. It was a great day for late November and I'm so glad we were able to capture these beautiful photos for her family.  I even sort-of got natural pictures of the kids.

Thanks Solis family for adopting us and making us feel just like family!!! <3

Thursday, December 14, 2017


I love shooting photos outdoor, in the natural light. I love the soft beautiful glow of the sun. I love the beautiful open fields and natural settings.......but honestly October and November were the worst weather months we've had in a long time. I think I had to re-schedule 75% of my sessions. It rained and was yucky and gross almost EVERY weekend. I was getting so tired of not having sunny, pretty weekends. SO, I decided to try some indoor mini Christmas sessions. I got some studio lights and dug out my Christmas trees and made a cute little studio in my living room - good thing I wasn't having Thanksgiving at my house, because it looked like a photo studio!

I LOVE how these turned out, the Christmas lights, the cute little kids in their jammies, the dressed up fancy pictures, I loved everything about them!! They turned out better than I could even imagine. I'm so grateful to my sweet clients who trusted me to capture their adorable kids.

My friends Rachel and Natalie brought their kids over for me to use as models to be able to make an advertisement. Their kids were naturals and we had a great time trying out all different outfits and props!

I had three more sessions of Christmas Mini's and this might be my FAVORITE picture of this year.....the jammies, the baby, the light, I LOVE all of it!! The rest of them are pretty awesome as well. Next year, I'll have to start them earlier so I have time to do more, it was such a fun way to capture these adorable Christmas memories!!