Isaiah + Sierra | Old Riverbed Park Wedding

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Isaiah + Sierra | Old Riverbed Park Wedding

July 8th, 2017

The sun was out, the sky was blue, and the temperatures warm but not too hot for this summer wedding!

Venue: Old Riverbed Park at James Orchard in Winston, Oregon

Catering: The family of the Bride & Groom

The Cake: Slice of Heaven Bakery in Grants Pass, Oregon

DJ: Brandon Plumlee (Sub Zero)

Hair + Makeup: Amanda Rodriguez

The Dresses: Sierra's dress came from David's Bridal; the bridesmaids' dresses were hand-made by the Groom's mother Jackie Little Miller

Men's Attire: Isaiah's jacket came from Tuxedo Warehouse; the shirts and vests were all sewn by Jackie Little Miller

Wedding Coordinator: Jemelene Wilson

Officiant: Russ Wilson

The Old Riverbed Park, also known as James Orchard, is a truly beautiful place for an outdoor wedding. There's lots of little nooks and crannies just perfect for photos, and plenty of room to accommodate weddings both large and small. The owners are just the sweetest people, and they go out of their way to help every wedding become the best that it can be!

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The happy couple decided to have an unplugged wedding, and had signs up to let their guests know that they wanted them all to be present and truly in the moment with them as they became husband and wife.

I can't even begin to tell you all what a beautiful wedding this was! Sierra chose deep purple as her primary color, and the décor revolved around various tones of purple, gray and white. The theme was what you might call a "Modern Vintage" look, with small crystal chandeliers, hanging flower baskets, tea light candles and more... scroll on and have a look!

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Sierra's gorgeous gown came from David's Bridal, and the Groom's mother, Jackie, made each of the bridesmaids' dresses; she also added a purple lace panel to the back of Sierra's dress that would be visible when the dress was bustled and matched the color of the bridesmaids' gowns. Swoon!!

Just look at this stunning lady! Sierra looked positively radiant in all her bridal glory, and practically out-shone the sun on her wedding day. Her happiness and growing excitement glowed from the inside out!

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Just as Sierra's bridal look came together seamlessly, so did the reception details, décor and table settings!

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Two caged chandeliers stood at the front of the ceremony instead of the traditional archway or arbor. See what I mean by "Modern Vintage"? This unique configuration of props and florals made for an elegant display.

I really love the use of this old clunker typewriter combined with a third caged chandelier, complete with glowing bistro lights, dripping crystals, lace and vintage suitcases and storybooks!

Each of the tables were decorated with smaller white bird cages, purple flowers and candles for yet another touch of vintage elegance.

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Like most everything else, the catering was handled by the family of the Groom and Bride; the cake and cupcakes were created by Slice of Heaven Bakery and were every bit as delicious as they were beautiful!

One last moment of prayer before the ceremony...

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Isaiah first ushered his mother and Sierra's mother down the aisle to their seats, and finally took his place to await his bride.

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A beautiful beginning!

Can we all just take a quick second to say "wow!" to these bridesmaids' dresses? Looking at them, it's hard to believe that they were all hand made by Jackie, the mother of the Groom. Each dress was different, and perfect for each girl! Beautiful!

And now, some portraits of the Bride and Groom!

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I have to say that the one thing that really struck me about this day (besides the amazing couple, obviously!) was how nicely everything just flowed. The entire day was smooth, seamless and had a very relaxed and happy feel to it from the bright beginning to the after-dark sparkler exit. It warmed my heart to be a part of it all, and to see a young couple just starting their lives and surrounded by so much love from friends and family. This is the absolute BEST part of my job!

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Isaiah and Sierra's sparkler send-off was the perfect way to wrap up this celebration of love...

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Congratulations Mr. and Mrs. Miller!

I want to thank you, Isaiah and Sierra, for choosing me to capture this amazing and precious time in your lives! I am honored to have worked with such wonderful people, and to have contributed to your family's legacy.

Last but not least, as always, special thanks to my lovely assistant and second shooter, Janae, without whom many of these images would not have happened! MUAH!!

xoxo

Christina

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Aaron + Candace | The Pippen-Fonsen Merger

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Aaron + Candace | The Pippen-Fonsen Merger

June 24th, 2017

OK, so we're not really talking about a merger, but an actual wedding! Candace and Aaron came up with the hashtag #pippenfonsenmerger for their wedding day, and so it seemed the perfect title for this blog feature! Get ready to feast your eyes on all the awesome details; but first, a quick THANK YOU to all of the vendors involved in the making of this kick-ass party!

Venue: Old Riverbed Park at James Orchard

Florals: Barb's Flowers

Wedding Cake + Catering: Lynda Vigue, Festive Catering

Hair: Cassie Brown

The Dress: David's Bridal

DJ: Christian Gruber at Visual Sound

Officiant: Kindra Light (sister of the Groom)

Once again, Oregon lives up to its reputation for unpredictable weather trends and delivered the hottest day of the year on June 24th. The girls stayed nice and cool in the bridal suite thanks to the newly installed air conditioner (thank you James Orchard!!) while the guys stuck out the heat to finish setting up for the day.

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Don't you just love these custom made ring boxes?! Candace's son Brayton and Aaron's son Liam served as ring bearers, and each of them got to carry their own ring down the aisle in these cute cases.

These two necklaces were two very special pieces of jewelry for Candace; the butterfly gem pendant holds a bit of her grandmother's ashes, and the "always in my heart" pendant holds the ashes of her grandfather.

These two necklaces were two very special pieces of jewelry for Candace; the butterfly gem pendant holds a bit of her grandmother's ashes, and the "always in my heart" pendant holds the ashes of her grandfather.

The girls were in high spirits despite the climbing temperatures, and listened to the radio as they took turns helping each other with their make-up!

Just look at this happy bride-to-be!

The Bride and Groom wrote letters to one another and took a few moments to read them together, but separated by a thick curtain so that Aaron would not see Candace before their First Look. They held hands and had a moment of silence before Aaron headed outside. So sweet!

I just love it when couples do a First Look, and I just adore when brides do one with their father, too! Candace's father, Allen, shed a few tears of joy when he saw how gorgeous his daughter looked in her wedding gown!

Long before the wedding day, Candace had her heart set on doing a First Look with Aaron underneath the shade of the large willow tree at James Orchard. This spot was absolutely perfect for an intimate first look!! The moment when Aaron first laid eyes on Candace was so special and beautiful!

The gorgeous flower crown and bridal bouquet were created by the always fabulous Barbara Hagedorn of Barb's Flowers & Premier Tanning in Roseburg.

The Bridesmaids carried these colorful lanterns instead of the traditional flower bouquets, and the guys wore Khaki jeans with suspenders instead of tuxedos--which worked out amazing, since it was soooo hot outside!

Top: Candace w/bridesmaids Madonna, Brittany, Cindy & Lindsay; Bottom: Groom w/groomsmen Taylor, Steve, Reggie & Joel.

Top: Candace w/bridesmaids Madonna, Brittany, Cindy & Lindsay; Bottom: Groom w/groomsmen Taylor, Steve, Reggie & Joel.

Liam, Brayton & Mollie. Aren't they just the cutest?!?!

And now, on with the merger!

The theme for this wedding was Woodland/Fairy style, and decorated with hues of purple and green. The tables were decorated with classic white linens, and each carefully created Woodland centerpiece rested atop custom engraved wood rounds, each with differently phrased expressions of affection. The hanging orbs filled with soil and succulents were a darling idea!

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A photo of Candace's grandparents, who both passed on before the wedding day, was the Bride's way of honoring their memory and including them in the festivities.

For their guest book, the couple asked that their guests each sign one of the leaves on this tree, printed on a canvas for them to hang in their home as a memory of everyone who came to support them.

Here comes the Bride...

The Bride and Groom wanted to do something special to include their children in the ceremony, but didn't want to hassle with messy sand or tree planting. Instead, they put together a unity puzzle with the kids to symbolize the joining of their family as one. How cool is that?!

From there on out, the ceremony was simple, short and sweet. Aaron and Candace wrote their own vows, and read them to each other through laughter and even a few tears...

Mr. & Mrs. Fonsen!

Aaron and Candace danced their first dance as Husband and Wife to not one, but three separate songs! Candace's dedication song to Aaron was "Making My Way to You" by Cole Swindell; Aaron's dedication song to Candace was "Die a Happy Man" by Thomas Rhett; and their third and joint dedication song was "My Best Friend" by Tim McGraw.

Father and daughter, Mother and son...

Candace had one more dedication song for her little boy, Brayton: "Simple Man" by Lynyrd Skynyrd (this is one of my faves too!) Aaron and Mollie joined Candace and Brayton on the dance floor for this one!

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The "Shoe Game"! If you haven't heard of it, it's totally fun! The newlyweds hold one of their own shoes and one of their spouse's shoes, sit back to back, and have to answer questions about themselves by raising either the Groom's shoe or the Bride's shoe. Lots of laughs during this game! The guests loved it!

The wedding cake was created by Lynda Vigue with Festive Catering, and OH. EM. GEE. It was beautiful!!! I'm in love with the hand painted succulents, and those vibrant strawberry, lemon and chocolate cupcakes were to die for!! Yummm!

The cake cutting got a little bit messy, lol...

And then, there was dancing... ohhhh, the dancing! Keep scrolling to see all the awesome photos of the guests partying the night away!

...but first, I know that by now the Bride is DYING to see a few Bride & Groom portraits, soooo.... yeah... :)

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Once the light was gone, the party was ON!!  The dancing during receptions is probably one of my favorite parts of the day to shoot! I love to bring my mad lighting skills to the party, and challenge myself to create photos that capture all of the fun around me in a creative and cool way. Just check out these rad dance shots of the newlyweds and their friends gettin' their groove on!

"I would love to get evening pictures of us; I want to get a special picture with the Groom with lights wrapped around us. I have an idea that I would love to shoot past you!" -- This was the message that Candace included at the end of an email to me as the wedding day was approaching, and I was intrigued!! We met up a few days before the wedding to discuss details, and she described to me a portrait, taken at night, with only a set of string lights for illumination; we both searched "twinkle lights portraits" on Pinterest, but neither of us came up with anything close to what she was describing. So for the last shot of the night, we set out to create something new to us and hopefully it would be pretty. Candace, I think we pretty much nailed it!

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At long last, we come to the end of this blog post!  Sorry if I get carried away, guys, but I just LOVE to share, and there are so many good images that I just couldn't narrow them down any further!

Special thanks go out to my amazing second shooter, Janae! Once again we've conquered another wedding day. Thank you for all of your help!!

XOXO

Christina

 

 

 

 

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Aaron + Caitlin | A Rainy Day Wedding

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Aaron + Caitlin | A Rainy Day Wedding

June 10th, 2017

Caitlin and Aaron live in Idaho, but planned their wedding from afar to take place in Winston, Oregon. Although they had hoped for perfect not-too-hot June weather for their outdoor wedding, what they got was a chillier than expected Saturday. It is often said that Oregon changes its mind on the weather every five minutes throughout much of the year, and on this day that was definitely true. We had (a few) patches of sunshine, bits of blue skies, storm clouds, light drizzles, heavy rains and monsoon-like downpours throughout the day. The weather might have been less than perfect, but that didn't stop this couple from enjoying the day to the fullest!

Venue: James Orchards

Florals: Barb's Flowers

Catering: Brett Lindeman and Kathy Meyer

Wedding Cake: Simply Delicious Cakes by Terra Faulkner

Videography: Cree Adamson at Melrose Productions

Hair: Kim Moschgat Adams

Makeup: Katie Eichenbusch

Tents, Lighting & Photo Booth: Destination Events

DJ: Chris Lyon, Epik DC Productions

Tuxedos: Men's Wearhouse

The Dress: Blush Bridal and Tux Shop in Eugene

Bridesmaid Dresses: Coral Infinity dresses from Amazon.com

The day started off pretty gray and drizzly, but when I arrived the girls were all in high spirits and ready to conquer the gloom! Caitlin had these beautiful sandals picked out with pearl beading and rhinestones, but she also brought a pair of white rain boots--just in case!

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This gorgeous wooden box was lovingly created by the Groom's grandfather, Wes Clark, and was perfect to house the wedding rings.

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While the rest of the details were still coming together, Aaron walked out to the pond and stood on the dock, and waited to have the first look at his beautiful Bride!

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I think it's safe to say that Aaron was totally smitten with the way Caitlin looked in her wedding dress!

Things got a little mushy before the rain started to fall again!

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The Groom and Groomsmen: Aaaron (Groom), Cody (Best Man), Jesse, Chris and Kenny.

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The Bride and her Bridesmaids: Caitlin (the Bride), Brieann (Matron of Honor), Rose, Summer and Leah.

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After the family and wedding party portraits, we found ourselves running from a sudden downpour! Everyone went back inside to escape the rain while the rest of the wedding details were getting set up. Caitlin and Aaron chose Coral and Gray for their primary wedding colors, which blended perfectly with the spring feel of the greenery and the gray clouds that came and went. This wedding was gorgeous!

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Terra arrived to set up the cake as guests were beginning to arrive; the rain just kept on coming, so the ceremony would now take place underneath the reception tent.

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On to the ceremony...

Caitlin looked absolutely stunning as she walked down the aisle on her father's arm.

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Aaron's daughters, Ashlynn and Addison, were honored during the ceremony with gifts from the Bride.

Caitlin placed a necklace on each of the girls, and promised to always love them as her own. This part of the ceremony made me tear up!

There were also some laughs when the Bride realized she had forgotten her written vows back in the getting ready suite and her Matron of Honor, Brieann, took off like a shot and ran to get them. When she returned Caitlin took the mic and pronounced her the "best bridesmaid EVER!"

From here on out, the rest of the evening was smooth sailing!

There was an assortment of wines to choose from, IPA "For the Win", as well as lemonade and even hot coffee!

By the time dinner rolled around, I was both parched and starving! This beautiful assortment of veggies, salads and tri-tip was absolutely delicious! Kathy and Brett did an outstanding job on both flavor and presentation. This food was sooooo good!

Toasts...

The wedding cake, made by Simply Delicious Cakes, was vanilla with cookie-dough filling. Yum!

Aaron and Caitlyn danced their first dance as Husband and Wife to Kaleb Jones's "'Til the World Stops Turning".

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Father and daughter, Mother and son.

The wedding day bling! The gold band was worn by the bride on her right hand, and belonged to her great-grandmother. It looks beautiful alongside the couple's silvery bands of swirls and sparkles.

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Special thanks on behalf of the Bride and Groom to everyone who came together to make this day possible--and beautiful! Lastly, but certainly not least, I would love to give a shout out to my partner in crime for the day, my second shooter, Tabitha Morales. Working with you is always a pleasure! I appreciate your hard work, attention to detail, and your willingness to brave the rain with me in the name of love. Thank you so much!!! xoxo

Christina

 

 

 

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Tasha + Kyle | Autumn Oregon Wedding

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Tasha + Kyle | Autumn Oregon Wedding

October 8, 2016

It seemed like forever since I first met Tasha and Kyle, but their wedding day finally came! They couldn't have picked a better day for their totally non-traditional, family-centered wedding--the weather was warm but not hot, and the setting was just gorgeous!

These two hosted their wedding and reception in their own backyard, with the comfort of home just steps away when the day was done!

Although most of the day and the details were put together by the happy couple and their family, there were some pretty awesome vendors who helped make this day extra special!  So without further adieu, super huge thanks go out to: 

Make-up: Kristin Upright at Glitter BItten Beauty
Bridal Hairstyle: Rashauna Belloir at The Hair Gallery
Wedding Cake: Amber Walter at Unique Custom Creations
The Dress: Blush Bridal in Eugene, OR (Designer: WToo)
Alterations: Maggie Ocumpaugh at Romantic Bridal Designs by Maggie
Bride's Bouquet: Custom designed bouquet from Eco Flower
Groom's attire: Men's Warehouse
Tables, chairs & linens: Party Time Rentals

Did I mention this was a totally non-traditional wedding? The ceremony was simple and sweet,. and focused only on Tasha, Kyle and their boys, and there was no official wedding party to speak of. Tasha's close friends Maria and Rashauna served as the unofficial bridesmaids, and Tasha and Kyle took care of all the catering themselves. The entire day was planned to accommodate the children and to make sure that Tasha and Kyle were still very much available to meet their needs at all times. This excerpt from Tasha's wedding Questionnaire sums up everything nicely, so I hope she won't mind if I share her words:
 

"This is a unique wedding as it will be completely "nontraditional" yet follow some traditional wedding traditions. Due to our oldest son being Autistic, this is the first large event for him and it may be hard. We are completely working around his schedule and what works for him, that is extremely important to us that he is comfortable and ok with everything. Meaning...if we need to stop our Bride and Groom photos to attend to him, we will. If the first dance doesn't take place right as when planned, we can do it later in the evening! We just want to have it be a fun and relaxed event for all!

We just ask that everyone involved please be understanding of our situation with our son, Cooper! We may need extra time during getting ready, and transitioning from one thing to the next can take a little extra time, patience and love :) Our boys mean the world to us, and although this day is about us getting married, they come first no matter what! We are very excited to have a fun, laid back great time with our friends and family!"

 

This was my first time going into a wedding under these specific circumstances, and I was very moved by this couple's dedication to their boys. I went into this wedding knowing that we wouldn't be able to follow more than a loosely planned timeline, and that was fine with me! After all, what wedding goes exactly as planned every minute of the day? I'm used to going with the flow when things suddenly change, and I viewed this wedding as being no different than any other, at least in that aspect of things.

Tasha's ahhhh-MAZINGLY beautiful wedding gown was designed by WToo, and she said yes to her dress at Blush Bridal in Eugene. I just loved all of the beautiful beading and ruffles!  This dress fit her like a dream, as you will see below! 

Future Brides: If you've never thought of having a personalized hanger created for your wedding day, I highly recommend it!  These are available on Etsy and even Amazon.com for very reasonable prices, and come in tons of awesome designs.  You can even have one made with your new last name and your wedding date, like Tasha did! Plus your dress will look fabulous in the photos on a nice hanger instead of the plastic one it comes with.  *wink-wink, nudge-nudge* 

Kristin Upright was Tasha's make-up artist.  Oh wait, did I say make-up artist? What I actually meant was "Cosmetic Goddess", because that should be her official title, haha.  I have seen this woman's work in many photos before this day, but this was the first time I got to see and photograph a Bride that she did the make-up for.  Tasha looked drop dead gorgeous even before she got her hair done or her dress on!  She could have gotten married in that robe and pulled it off like a boss, honestly.  Great work, Kristin!! 

Tasha's friend and hair artist Rashauna Belloir doubled as unofficial Bridesmaid and Hair Extraordinaire.  I was amazed as I watched Tasha's long blonde locks transform into the elegant up-do that Rashauna created! 

Poor little Wyatt was teething, and came in to get some Mommy comfort while Tasha got her hair done. The whirlwind of wedding craziness certainly didn't keep this girl from being a loving and attentive Mommy throughout the whole day!

Before getting all dressed up himself, Kyle gets a last minute trim from Rashauna.

Once it was time to get dressed, Cooper was happy to have his daddy help him get dressed, and was even more happy to help daddy put on his tie!  So sweet!!!

Almost time to put on the dress! Rashauna helps Maria with her hair, and puts the finishing touches on Tasha's up-do.

Tasha takes a quick peek at her finished make-up and hair as little Wyatt sneaks a peek at me!  He was trying to hide from the camera, but I got him! Haha!

The finished Bridal Look, in bold and beautiful color. Sooooo much awesomeness!

Tasha's bridal bouquet was a custom order from Eco Flower (link at the top!). Eco Flower makes these gorgeous flowers out of WOOD, and they do an amazing job!  Tasha got to pick her colors and style of flowers, and the best part is that she gets to keep this bouquet for the rest of her life. Such an awesome idea! I hope to see more of these on the wedding scene next year!

While the girls were busy getting ready, Kyle and a few friends were putting together the wedding and reception areas.  How's this for a backyard wedding?!

This arbor was made by hand by Tasha's father, Steve. Check out all of the hand-carved details!  

Finally, it was time for the ceremony!

The sun was shining bright as Rashauna and Maria escorted little Wyatt down the aisle, followed by Cooper riding in this cute little wagon!

A truly family centered wedding, Tasha and Kyle's little men stood with them at the altar while they exchanged their vows to each other.

Congratulations Mr. & Mrs. Pachmayr!!!

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Tasha's theme was Eggplant and Sunflowers--the perfect color combination for a fall wedding. 

Did I mention that Kyle built this dance floor himself? Cooper loved racing his toy trains on it! 

A very special First Dance. Kyle is not really a dancer, Tasha says, especially in front of people, so their first dance was even more special to her. Then, right when it couldn't get any more special, Cooper came up and joined them!

When it comes to wedding day nightmares, I think just about every Bride has the fear that something might happen to her precious wedding cake!  So when the top tier and half of the bottom tier slid off the display and came crashing down onto the dessert table, Tasha and Kyle showed us all just what to do if your wedding cake should fall down...

...you pick up the cake topper, plant it firmly into the remaining bit of cake, and you cut what's left of it with a smile on your face. This couple has already faced so many of life's challenges together, and they didn't let this unfortunate event dull the shine of their day! In the end the cake tasted just as good, and Tasha and Kyle were just as ecstatic to finally be husband and wife!

And this, ladies, is how you handle adversity on your wedding day with style and grace!

One thing that I really love at a wedding is the father-daughter dance. My father's memory is very special to me, and seeing Brides dancing with their daddies always gets me a little teary. Tasha's dad took this opportunity to say some things to his little girl that he hadn't said before, and she couldn't hold back her tears.  So sweet!!

As the sun went down, a few of the guests busted their moves on the dance floor, and the kids had a great time chasing each other around on it!

When the light was finally gone and the kiddos were all in bed, we busted out the flashes and did a few fun shots with lights and sparklers!  I love it when couples are totally on board with letting me play with the lights, and the results are often some really cool effects!

Shout out to my awesome second shooter and lighting assistant, Janae!  Without you these shots would never have been possible.  Thanks soooo much, girlfriend!! 

Thank you soooo much, Tasha and Kyle, for choosing me document this special day in your family's lives!  We had a great time meeting all of your family and friends, and capturing your love!  

 

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Chris + Cortney | James Ranch Park Wedding

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Chris + Cortney | James Ranch Park Wedding

I first met Chris and Cortney back in January of this year, and I have to say that I liked them immediately.  Warm and friendly, these two really struck me as one of those couples that are just right for each other, and I couldn't wait to photograph their wedding!

This August day was bright and sunny and hot, and for the first time ever, I witnessed a wedding that ran on time, almost down to the minute, from start to finish.  That might not seem so strange to some, but in the realm of wedding photographers it can be equated to running into a magical Unicorn at Starbucks, and the Unicorn gives you a free quadruple shot latte and a handful of magical Skittles.  When that happens, you KNOW it's going to be an amazing day!

I arrived at the mother of the Groom's home in the morning hours to check in with Cortney, meet the Bridesmaids and other family, and of course to get some photos of the start of the day.  Cortney was soooo excited to finally be marrying Chris, and she just glowed the whole day through!  She and her sisters, her mom and Chris's mother were all in high spirits as they chatted away the morning and had Mimosas while they got ready for the day. 

Chris's aunt styled Cortney's hair for the wedding while her sister BobiSue took care of her makeup.

Chris and Cortney's special day took place at the beautiful James Ranch Park out in Winston. This is truly a picturesque location for a wedding--tons of flowers, room for plenty of guests and parking, a little playground for the kids, a small kitchen, and lots of cute little spots for photos. 

Oh, and in case you were wondering, the 'hunting season' sign was a joke, hahaa.  The Bride's family took it down before the ceremony started!

The decor for this wedding was just gorgeous, with lots of bright sunflowers and accents of light blue, burlap and lace.  Simple wood rounds adorned each table, and atop each round was a photo of the happy couple and a vase of sunflowers, daisies and dahlias.  

The Catering for this wedding was done by The Rocking GP BBQ Company.  The food was delicious, and the people were wonderful!  

Amber and David Keen, the Maid of Honor and Best Man, gave the speeches after dinner and had us all cracking up!  We loved David's "short list" of things he had to say.  

The cake and cupcakes were created by a friend of the Bride and Groom's family, a sweet lady by the name of Lorie.  These were truly beautiful, and delicious too!  

Chris and Cortney danced their first dance to Thomas Rhett's "Die a Happy Man".

Through the Lookingglass Photography provided the Photo Booth for the evening and the guests really had a blast with it!  The ladies who ran it were very professional.  It was a lot of fun to see everyone ooh-ing and ahh-ing over their printed strips of silly photos!  

Special thanks also go out to Janae of Janae Kristine Photography for coming out and assisting me, and for helping to fight off the wasps!  Thank you so much Janae for all your hard work!  

Thank you SOOOO MUCH to Chris and Cortney for letting me be a part of this amazing event! I can't even tell you how happy it makes me to see a couple so truly in love with each other and having a great time on their wedding day!  I am so glad I could be a part of all the fun!  

xoxo

Christina


Venue: James Ranch Park | 1769 Olalla Rd., Winston, Oregon

Catering: The Rocking GP BBQ Company | Roseburg, Oregon

Cake + Cupcakes: Lorie, friend of the family

Day-of Coordinator: Allison Barnett, family friend

Photo Booth rental: Joan Hill, Through the Lookingglass Photography | Roseburg, Oregon

DJ: Destination Events, DJ Joe | www.destinationevents.com | Eugene, Oregon

Wedding Gown and Bridesmaid Dresses:  David's Bridal | Eugene, Oregon

Men's Tuxes: Tuxedo Warehouse | Roseburg, Oregon

Table Linens + Misc rentals: Occasionally Yours Party Rentals | Roseburg, Oregon

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Kym + Jack | An "I Do" BBQ

This July 30th wedding was a long-awaited event!  Jack and Kym have been together for nearly 20 years and at long last decided to tie the knot.  

Family is at the top of this couple's priority list and their simple, backyard BBQ style wedding reflected that fact.  Everything was planned not just around this new marriage, but around the family and friends that these two have cultivated throughout the years. 

Not one to stress about things, Kym scheduled the ceremony for later on in the day and spent the early hours of the afternoon relaxing with friends and drinking Mojitos by the pool!  When it was time for the ceremony to begin she arrived in style, and had a friend deliver her to the Roseburg Rod & Gun Club in a sweet yellow convertible.  

Jack walked to the car to open the door for her, and escorted her up the aisle with friends and family cheering them on.  

The ceremony was short and sweet. 

Kym's son Michael and Jack's daughter Whitney signed as their witnesses.  

These cute cupcakes and cake pops were made by two friends.  Angela M. did the cupcakes, and Catherine H. made the cake pops.  

Once everyone had had a bite to eat and some cold drinks, Kym danced the night away with everyone who was willing to get down on the dance floor. I love when guests get their groove on and truly enjoy themselves at a wedding reception!  

Even the kids got out there to bust a few moves.

This little area by the river is just a two minute walk from the pavilion at the Rod and Gun Club, and made a nice spot for some portraits just as the sun was disappearing behind the trees.

Congratulations Kym and Jack!!  Thank you for letting me be a part of your special day!!

P.S. It's about time...

xoxo

Christina

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Amee + Jesse | Douglas County Fair

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Amee + Jesse | Douglas County Fair

I ran into Amee and her boyfriend Jesse on July 30th at Kym + Jack's wedding and she mentioned that she had been thinking of having some portraits taken but didn't know which photographer to go to.  Lucky for her, this is my specialty; not only that but I just *happened* to be toying with the idea of shooting at the local fair after dark and needed a happy couple to model for me.  We had a vague arrangement worked out in minutes, and got in touch promptly after the wedding to figure out the details. 

We decided on August 11th, set up a time to meet and it was a date!  Then, out of the blue...

"Hi Christina! It's Jesse, Amee's boyfriend. We spoke to you at Kym's wedding about a photo shoot. So here's the thing, I have this idea and I want to propose to Amee and get it all on camera.. she doesnt know this so please don't mention it to her.  I want it to be a complete surprise..."

My response was something along the lines of "OMG OMG OMG!!" followed by squeals of happiness! I'd always wanted to capture a proposal and this was the PERFECT opportunity--since Amee set up the shoot with me herself, there was no way she would ever suspect a thing! Muahahahahahaaaa... uh, I mean YAYYYY!!  

Jesse and I agreed on a verbal cue that I would give him when I figured out what would be the best little area to pop the question.  I got to the fair early and walked around a little bit.  I knew Jesse didn't want to propose in front of a huge crowd, so I decided that the Midway was the best place since the lower end of the fairgrounds was super busy and jam packed full of people arriving for that night's musical act. We walked up and down the Midway, took a few photos just to get things rolling, and then I gave Jesse his verbal cue:  I told him that I needed to get a great big smile out of Amee and asked him to whisper in her ear all the things that he loved about her.  I don't know exactly how he worded it, but it must have been good!! 

Mission accomplished!!  Amee didn't suspect a thing.

Finally the sun had set, and the real fun began!  Now it was an engagement shoot, and there was no light!  I had been looking forward to this challenging bit of night time portraits, and brought my flash setup and wireless triggers for some dramatic images after dark.  My new friend Lauren of Lauren Reber Photography was my sidekick on this shoot, and directed my light for me as well as doing a bit of second shooting.  THANK YOU Lauren, sooo much for taking the time to help a gal out!  These images wouldn't have been possible without you!

I'm lovin' this haunted house image of Amee and Jesse in a casual snuggle.

My goal for these night shots was to incorporate the colorful lights from the carnival rides as a background element, and to capture a bit of motion blur from the fast-moving thrill rides in the distance.  The results were even better than I had imagined they could be!

Thank you so much to Amee and Jesse for being my models for the evening, and for sharing your special moment with me and Lauren!  Congratulations, and I can't wait for your wedding next year!

xoxo

Christina

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John + Crystal | Millpond Pavilion Wedding

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John + Crystal | Millpond Pavilion Wedding

Idleyld Park, Oregon | June 25th, 2016

Two of the sweetest people you could hope to meet, John Disrude and Crystal Barnes, got married on Saturday the 25th of June at the always beautiful Millpond Pavilion nestled deep in the woods just northeast of Glide, Oregon.  This wedding was full of romantic color and some REALLY cool details, so let's jump right in!  

WARNING:  You might want to stop and grab a couple of tissues right now.  Some of you might need them for your happy tears, and some of you will need them when you see the spectacular display of assorted cupcakes because you might just find yourself drooling all over your keyboard--or worse, your phone! Don't say I didn't warn you.

Our day started at the Swiftwater Guesthouse, a secluded little getaway on the North Umpqua River just 15 minutes away from the Millpond recreation site where the day's festivities would take place.  I got right to work capturing these sweet details while the bridesmaids were finishing up the guys' boutonnieres and the floral arrangements for the reception.  As you can see, the grounds of the guesthouse provided a charming and serene backdrop for photos of the Bride's dress and accessories.  

Special little details help to truly make your big day all yours.  Crystal lost her mother eleven years ago and wanted to incorporate something to both include and honor her mother's memory on her wedding day.  This tiny framed photo of her mother was added to her bridal bouquet; the necklace below was a custom made gift from her sister to honor their mother.  

The Bride's garter was custom made for her, with her new initials embroidered on the lace band.  The "toss" garter was embroidered too, and read "Nice Catch!"  

I'm a huge fan of sparkly detailed shots of the couples' rings, and for this wedding I took a step outside of my usual technique for photographing them.  This purple, glittery ring shot below is the result.  I love it, and I hope the Bride will too!

The make-up artist arrived right on schedule and our blushing bride got her pampering on! Katie from A Classic Touch Salon in Roseburg created Crystal's wedding day look and was just fabulous to have around.  This girl's got some serious skills, and took Crystal's already obvious bridal glow and put an elegant touch of bridal glam on it.  You rock, Katie!!

Into the dress!

The bridesmaids help with Crystal's finishing touches while Katie applies the final bit of lip color before it's time to head for the Millpond Pavilion.  Crystal's sisters Tanya, Jamie & Amber, along with John's sister Stephanie, served as her bridesmaids.

Once all of the finishing touches were done, it was high time we headed out for the ceremony! Guests were in good spirits, and eagerly anticipating the arrival of the bride and her entourage.

This is my favorite part of every wedding.  Whether the bride and groom have had a First Look is of no consequence; the moment every groom sees his wife-to-be approaching from the end of that aisle, the expression on his face is always golden.  This look of is one of pure adoration, both undeniable and unmistakable.  This is the face of love.

Mr. and Mrs. John Disrude.  Congratulations, love birds!!

A few portraits of the happy newlyweds...

The Reception

The rustic look of the Pavilion paired nicely with the bride's chosen colors for her big day. Wood rounds and mason jars filled with white and purple flowers and baby's breath gave a softer feel to the vibrant pops of Teal and royal Purple that adorned the reception tables while strings of Edison lights draped over the wood beams above added a bit of elegance.  Little nests were included on each table, and tied together the "love birds" theme of the day.

The food served for this event consisted of cool summertime favorites, sandwiches, and fresh cut cantaloupe, honeydew and strawberries.  Two large wine barrels served as an ice-filled home for pre-filled drinks in sealed mason jars.  Guests chose from chilled Iced Tea or Lemonade, and two dispensers were available for refilling empty glasses.  This is the first time I have seen wine barrels used in this way, and definitely the first time I have ever seen drinks served like this!  Awesome idea, right?!

Cupcakes, you ask?  Oh yes, those are coming up!  But first, dancing!!

John and Crystal's first dance as husband and wife, to Ed Sheeran's "Thinking Out Loud".  

The father-daughter dance.  Just look at how cute these two are!  

But wait!! The dances aren't over yet!  Crystal's sons Chris, Brandon & Anthony served as the groomsmen, and these guys weren't about to let this day go by without dancing with their mother!  Each of them took a turn at twirling Crystal across the dance floor, much to the delight of the guests (and the photographers too!). Such fun!

Then, finally, there were CUPCAKES.  Lots and lots of cupcakes.  Cupcakes of various flavors, set upon towering tiers on this STUNNINGLY beautiful hand crafted Cupcake Tree.  This, my friends, is a thing of beauty!!!  

When Crystal asked her uncle Ed "Doc" Holliday to make her a cupcake stand for her upcoming wedding, she was imagining something along the lines of a table-top setup with a few shelves made of wood to display these desserts.  What she got was this amazing, hand crafted actual TREE that is taller than she is, and nearly as tall as her new husband.  Wow!!!!!  Our hats are off to this man who went way above and wayyy beyond for his niece.  What an outstanding gift!!  Tabitha and I were in awe!

The branches of this tree of sweet sustenance held the work of local cake-maker Amber Walter of Unique Custom Creations (link provided at the bottom of this post).  The Bride chose four flavors, and each shelf held dozens of cupcakes in Lemon, Marionberry, Coconut Cream and chocolate Turtle Sundae varieties. 

FEAST. YOUR. EYES.  

Yummmm... are you drooling yet?  

John and Crystal decided to keep their main cake for the traditional First Anniversary treat, and instead the pair split a cupcake!  Crystal's favorite cupcake was the Coconut Cream.

Here I have to give a shout-out to my awesome Second Shooter for this wedding, Tabitha Morales.  She was a great second set of eyes on this wedding, and even caught this fleeting moment when a butterfly landed on the bride's bouquet!  Thank you sooo much Tabitha for coming along and helping me get everything covered.  Your hard work and attention to detail is truly appreciated!

Congratulations John + Crystal!!  Thank you so much for choosing me to preserve your memories for you, your children and the generations to come!

XOXO

Christina

Special thanks on behalf of the Bride & Groom to everyone who helped make this day an affair to remember!  

Larry Russel Cole (Russ) | Officiant

Nichole Louder | Day-of coordinator, dress-dropper & boss-lady

Katie Eichenbusch from A Classic Touch salon | Bridal hair & Make-up

Damon DePriest | DJ, Music & Sound System; friend of the bride & groom

Amber Walter, Unique Custom Creations | All the yummy cupcakes.  They were delicious!!

David's Bridal in Eugene, Oregon | All the girls' dresses, including the Bride

Tuxedo Warehouse | All the guys' suits

The Swiftwater Guesthouse | The Bride & Groom's retreat for the big day

Amy Carson | The guest "wrangler" for photos

The Bridesmaids | Tanya Leon, Amber Kerrick-Barnes, Jamie Divine & Stephanie Golden-Disrude

The Groomsmen | Chris Sanchez, Brandon Sanchez & Anthony Sanchez

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Jason + Kelley | Carnival Theme Wedding Reception

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Jason + Kelley | Carnival Theme Wedding Reception

SOMEWHERE IN ESCONDIDO, CALIFORNIA...

Seriously.. this is "somewhere" in Escondido, but I couldn't tell you exactly where. This backyard style wedding reception was held on some private property owned by the family of the Bride.  The place was really beautiful on this spring day back in April of 2015. Last year, you say?  Yes, but don't let that put you off. The fun, whimsical little details of this Carnival themed wedding reception are definitely worth having a look at, especially if you're thinking of doing something similar for your own reception.

You might be thinking, "What about the ceremony?"  

Well, when the wedding is on one day and the reception is two weeks later, and both are happening about 900 miles away, making the trip twice isn't really doable for most folks. So when I told my brother I could only make it to one or the other and asked him which he would prefer I attend, he said without hesitation, "The party, of course!"   

The Bride and Groom are Jason and Kelley.  Jason is a recent graduate of the UCLA school of theater and film.  Kelley is the artist and owner of Kellsworth Ink, located in Orange County, California.  Kelley is an extremely talented artist, and does custom art creations of various sorts.  See those adorable wooden cake-topper statuettes above?  She hand-painted those.  In fact, every little artistic bit of detail you will see in this post was created by Kelley; the programs, the table decor, the signs, the large wooden photo prop cut-out, the stationery... if I remember correctly, she even made her own dress and hair embellishments.  If you'd like to order your own custom hand-painted cake toppers, you can get in touch with Kelley on {Facebook} or check out her shop on {Etsy}.

And now, some photos of the silly couple:

"Mutual Weirdness" indeed.

Just inside the entrance to the Reception area were these adorable programs.  The outer covers were colorful, carnival themed drawings of the happy couple while the inside of the programs had love letters -- one from Jason to Kelley, and one from Kelley to Jason. Sooooooo cuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuute.  

More hand-created bits of awesome from the bride.  That photo cutout prop was a big hit!

I loved all the bits of red and white throughout the decor of this Carnival reception.  The way Kelley planned out the coloring really ties the whole event together.  

The tables each had mason jar drink glasses with chalk-board labels affixed to them, and pieces of red and white chalk so that guests could write their names on their glasses.  Every table also had a small framed chalkboard, each one with a different saying written on it in white chalkboard paint.  What a fantastic idea, right?!

Other little details on the reception tables included red gumball machines, brown paper bags of peanuts, pints of fresh red strawberries and small glass jars with sand and tea light candles.

I absolutely adore the red and white striped straws, and the striped twine and ribbon on the peanut bags.  The little red Carnival tickets are such a perfect finishing touch.

Everything was set up underneath a large white tent, and thank goodness for that because it was pretty toasty outside even though it was only April.  The signs and garland pictured above were of course made by the Bride!  :)

How cool is this??  The guests loved having this retro popcorn station at the reception.  

There was plenty of ice cold beverage options to keep everyone cool and comfortable.

Jason and Kelley kept the catering simple and easy, yet crowd-pleasing at the same time. Relatives set up and ran their hot dog station and everybody LOVED it.  All of the fixin's were there--Mustard, Ketchup, BBQ sauce, Deli Mustard, and even a slow cooker full of Chili to top it off.  Little ears of roasted corn on the cob (on a stick!) made a great hot option for a side dish.

These individual potato salad cups and macaroni and cheese cups were a great idea for a cold side option, along with an assortment of fresh veggies and chilled watermelon wedges.

The sweets table was truly spectacular!  Consistent with the Carnival theme, sweets included cotton candy, Cracker Jacks, taffy, red vines, pixie stix and swirl pops.  There were also candy buttons and circus animal cookies, and cute little striped containers to take a treat home.  Love!!!

I like to find interesting little ways to incorporate something from the wedding day into the ring shots, and these colorful swirl pops were just perfect for that!  

Instead of cupcakes or cake, Jason and Kelley opted for an assortment of pies and candy apples for dessert.  A tower of frosted doughnuts with sprinkles replaced the traditional wedding cake.

This Carnival themed reception was a big success, and I loved all the little details!  Being able to be there and to document this special occasion for my brother was well worth the 30+ hour drive to San Diego.  Thanks for having us, guys!  Happy Anniversary!

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Tasha + Kyle

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Tasha + Kyle

On this reasonably warm day in May, I set out to capture this absolutely GORGEOUS couple for their engagement shoot.  We met up in the afternoon hours and drove to Myrtle Creek hoping for good light and no rain!  This is Oregon though, so weather-wise you never really can tell.  You know that Oregon saying "If you don't like the weather, wait five minutes"?  It definitely applied to this day!

We arrived at Millsite Park in Myrtle Creek around 4:15 and immediately got rained on!  We went underneath the half shell to hide from the rain, but we didn't have to wait long.  Within five minutes the rain stopped just as suddenly as it started, and we ran back out to get a few shots underneath the canopy of trees that lined the walkway beside the park.  From there on out, Mother Nature was pretty awesome to us!  

We took full advantage of the bursts of bright sunshine...

...and used the soft light from cloud-cover to capture some romantic portraits under the trees.

The Neal Lane Covered Bridge is just a few minutes away from Millsite Park, and a beautiful spot to get some great portraits.  Having grown up in this area added a nice personal touch to Tasha and Kyle's engagement photos, too.

Before we decided to call it a day, we made one last stop on the way out of town.  Kyle and Tasha kicked up the romance for these last few shots.  Freeeowww!!!

Thank you sooooo much Tasha and Kyle for braving the elements (we nearly cancelled when the rain started at 3!), and for walking all over the MC area with us!  It was a great time, and I am really, reeeaallly excited for your October wedding!  

Special thanks also to my assistant for this engagement shoot, Janae of Janae Kristine Photography.  You rocked this session, girl, even when my softbox was trying to catch wind and fly away with you, hahaha.   Can't wait to work with you again!

xoxo

 

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The Arrival of Baby Gabe

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The Arrival of Baby Gabe

Now, some of you might be thinking, "where has she been?!"  My online presence over the past year has been minimal due to my complicated pregnancy and the fact that there was no way I could work my day job and keep up with photographing for clients at the same time.  I've been away from my camera for too long, and couldn't wait to get back to it!  So when my doctor asked me the day before my due date if I wanted to just come in and get it over with, I said "Yes please!"  I was already dilated to six centimeters and 100% effaced, so why not?

There are decided advantages to scheduling your baby's birth.  With my first two sons, my water broke suddenly in the wee hours of the morning, so I rolled out of bed all haggard and exhausted from the previous day's nesting activities and off to the hospital I went looking like crap.  Not this time!  My induction was scheduled for noon on March 18th.  I took full advantage of this and slept in until 9 a.m., then spent the rest of the morning making myself look nice before heading down to the Mercy Family Birthplace.  If you're hiring a photographer to come to the hospital do document your baby's birth, it is definitely advantageous to know ahead of time when you will be in labor.

Once we got settled in and school was out, my sons joined me and Mike at the hospital to say goodbye to mommy's great big tummy, and to wait for the arrival of their new little brother!

The doctor came in and broke my water at 5:45 p.m.  I had my first contraction within five minutes, and we knew the wait time wouldn't be long!

By 7:30 p.m. the contractions were going strong and steady.  Daniel kept a close watch over the monitors, and every time he saw the "mountains" starting to rise he would quietly warn me that another contraction was on its way.  Matthew stayed at my bedside most of the time, holding my hand and anxiously watching my face as the contractions came and went.  He was so concerned for his mommy.  I am very proud to be raising such great little men!

In case you're wondering "What's up with the watch?" I'll tell you this:  a watch with a second hand is the BEST focal point to have.  A digital watch that counts seconds works just as well; fixing your eyes on those seconds and watching them tick away during those moments of excruciating pain helps to keep you focused on your breathing and also helps you to know that even though you are in a world of hurt, the pain IS in fact passing with every second.  I can't imagine going through labor without one.

As if being in a hurt locker isn't fun enough, the hospital's only anesthesiologist was stuck in trauma and wasn't able to administer the epidural at the scheduled time.  No pain meds?  No problem--I am a birthing champion, and sailed through those waves of pain like a boss.  By 8:50 p.m. baby Gabe was almost here and the contractions were at their most painful!  A few minutes later the anesthesiologist came sweeping into the room, apologized for being so late, and administered sweet relief in the form of a spinal block (it was too far into the labor for an epidural at this point).  Epic timing on his part, since I was starting to feel the urge to push just seconds before he entered the room.  Once the spinal block was taken care of, my fabulous doctor was at my bedside and it was time for things to get moving--and FAST.  

Our gorgeous baby, Gabriel Jacob Shawn Davidson, made his graceful entrance into the world at 9:12 p.m. on March 18th, 2016, weighing 8 pounds and 1 ounce--a full pound more than I had estimated, and then some.

Baby Gabe did NOT like getting his feet prints taken.

...baby Gabe does, however, looooove a warm bath!

Mike, Grandma Helen, and Gabe's big brothers Matthew and Daniel, ogling over the new addition to our family :)

Daniel was amazed at how tiny his new brother's hands are!  He and Matthew are so in love with their new baby!

As fabulous as everything went, getting Gabe into the world wasn't all sunshine and roses.  I tested positive for Group B Strep during the pregnancy, so I had to have two rounds of antibiotics before I could give birth; once he was out, he developed a fever on the second day and we had to stay in the hospital an extra two days so that he could have a couple rounds of his own antibiotics to guard against any infections.  Overall though, I couldn't have asked for a better labor, doctor, anesthesiologist or better nurses.

Everyone at Mercy was awesome!  

Last but definitely not least, I have to give special thanks and major kudos here to my good friend Jennifer for taking all of the beautiful photos you see in this blog post.  These images will be priceless treasures that only grow in sentimental value as the years pass and our family grows. THANK YOU, girlfriend, from the bottom of my heart!  MUAH!!!  

xoxox

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