Mary and Dan get married - Willows, CA

If I had to envision a perfect backyard wedding I would picture Mary and Dan's wedding in Willows, CA. The bride grew up in the very house she would marry her future husband. It was a perfectly warm day when all of Mary and Dan's closest family and friends gathered on the very lawns she watered as a little girl to witness the couple become husband and wife. Rewind to just a few months ago, if anyone had asked me to photograph their wedding I would have politely declined and told them large events intimidated me. This was all true until my brother-in-law introduced me to Mary, the bride. I was blown away by her kindness and her ultra calm approach to planning this wedding. She said it would be at her parents' house and that she's letting her mom plan it all since that's what her mom wants to do. That was it! It was so simple and intimate that I was almost begging Mary to hire me! My brother-in-law of Spleeny Films and I teamed up and covered this beautiful, relaxed wedding, and now I want to get married again. In this backyard. 

I met Mary first and remember thinking I wanted to be her friend instantly. She is so relaxed and funny and she is down for anything. She had many great things to say about her fiancé Dan, and when I finally met him at their engagement session I totally felt the same way about him! Together these two are the type of friends you hope to make in a lifetime and to have found each other as partners is pure bliss. If I could extend a belated wedding toast to Mary and Dan I would say to them: I have only known you both for a few months, but being your wedding photographer has taught me more about you than I know about some people I've known for years. Your congeniality and ability to become friends with anyone is inspiring. Your love for each other is fun and genuine. You surround yourselves with the sweetest and most generous people; I got a taste of what "southern hospitality" is being amidst your friends and family. Having one of the above is lucky; having all the above is a blessing for a very strong foundation as your start your lives together as husband and wife. Congratulations, Mary and Dan!

LOVE Dan's reaction when he first saw Mary. 

But first, shots!

Mary went to college in Hawaii where she learned how to hula dance. She surprised Dan with a beautiful hula towards the end of the evening.

Thao and Kevin - San Francisco City Hall Wedding

It's been a while since I've shot anything wedding-related, but when my friend and talented photographer of Hanh Nguyen Photography tells me she's shooting her cousin's SF City Hall wedding I can't help but ask her if I can tag along. I've always wanted to photograph a wedding there - the architecture and lighting is absolutely stunning. Thank you, Hanh, for letting me follow you around that afternoon and learn from you! 

What a beautiful looking couple! 

What a beautiful looking couple! 

I was absolutely crazy about her hair. 

I was absolutely crazy about her hair. 

A couple of the bride's closest friends flew in for the special occasion. 

A couple of the bride's closest friends flew in for the special occasion. 

Dan and Mary engagements, San Francisco, CA

I just love this couple! It's been a while since I've shot an engagement session but these two reminded me why it's so fun and beautiful to photograph such a relationship. Think about the sweetest friends you have, now multiply that by 10 - that gives you Dan and Mary. I'm serious, these two are so easy going and kind, and they were always either laughing or smiling. It was a joy to be around them and an honor to get to capture some of these tender moments before they become husband and wife. They started out as friends when they both worked at Sega (I know, how cool is that?!), and as fate would have it their friendship grew into something more. I look forward to capturing their wedding memories this May. Congratulations, Dan and Mary!

The Andrews Family in Menlo Park, CA

I just love this family. Over the years of taking their family photos we've gotten pretty good with the on-demand natural smiles. I mean, look at them! They were just perfect. This was one of my Peninsula mini sessions, and it was my first year doing them per suggestion of my client who's the mom here. I really appreciate when clients give me suggestions and feedback that end up working well for all my families. I'd say the mini sessions this year were very successful overall, and I will likely be doing more of them next year around this time since that seems to be the most popular request. 


And these looks can totally create so many hilarious memes! 

Sweet Sisters - Piedmont, CA

I have been taking photos of these beautiful sisters since the youngest was still crawling. I can't believe they're already two little ladies who are sharing secrets and giggles like only sisters would understand. Having two sisters of my own I understand how special this relationship is. There were times when I couldn't stand having my little sister follow me around and copy everything I did, and then like a flip of a switch I would want her by my side at all times and she'd be my best friend.  I was also that same little sister who copied my big sister, who would be so annoyed all our childhood, yet, grow up to call me daily to see how I'm doing.  

O and J are clearly bonded by this same special relationship, although they are probably much sweeter to each other than my sisters and I were. I'm so excited for them because one thing I know for sure, having a sister is the best gift I've ever received. Thanks, Mom! ;-)