I had the pleasure of photographing owners Torrey and Stacy along with their “gnomies” at the Hopping Gnome recently to celebrate their upcoming 4 year anniversary! We had a blast and it is so clear that this group seems to have far more fun than they do work.
If you haven’t yet stopped by this sweet brewery right in the heart of the city you are missing out. The decor is minimalist and charming with Gnomes everywhere you look, their calendar is full of events ranging from game nights to live music, and let’s not forget the best part….their beer is FANTASTIC! If you are looking for something special to do on May 25th make sure to stop by and try some of their delicious beer and celebrate their anniversary! More info at:
Check out some of my favorites from our session below!
Updated: Tuesday we received a phone call from Access Hollywood and our little worker had a Skype interview to be featured on their “The Best Thing We’ve Seen Today” segment Tuesday, April 16th! Look up your local times and make sure to tune in!! Make sure to check out the update from the Wichita Eagle here!
You may remember a little blog I wrote just before Christmas about how Frankie is “working” at Target…if you do not recall you can find it here. Fast-forward to about a week ago when we were contacted by Carrie Rengers from the Wichita Eagle asking to do a story on Frankie and her “best friends” at Target! Needless to say we were ecstatic! We quickly scheduled to meet Carrie, Jaime Green (photographer and videographer from the Eagle) and all of Frankie’s best friends at the Starbucks in Target so they could get a taste of why Frankie is so Target obsessed!
We had a blast, and now Frankie hasn’t stopped talking about her new best-friends from the newspaper! The article made the front cover of the newspaper this morning. What 3 year old makes the cover of the Sunday paper?! She has no idea just how special she is! I, of course, documented some of the interview and her “reading” her amazing article! Make sure to check out her story here and her photos and the original video below!
Shoot and Share results came out a little over a week ago and I have to say that I am super happy with my personal growth over the last year! You will see in the first photo below that last year 18 photos made it into the top 30% with my best 3 placing in the top 10%. I was so happy with those results last year. After all, it was my first year entering and my first year in business! This year however that number climbed to 32 photos making the top 30%, 8 in the top 10% and 3 finalists (top 3.2%).
This is the largest photo competition each year with 583,150 photos submitted this year alone. Each person can submit up to 50 photos and I have submitted the full 50 both years. The voting takes place over nearly an entire month and anyone can vote. It is actually hugely entertaining/addictive and when the contest is over it leaves me with a slight empty feeling…and then the waiting begins…waiting, waiting, waiting…for about 3 weeks they announce the top placing photos before they finally give all of us the results. And now what? I guess I will continue to shoot and hope that next year I can do even better than I did this year!
If you are curious you should check out this year’s top placing photographs, they really are spectacular and give me major #goals!
The entire album of my placing photos is below and you will notice in the upper right hand corner the badge that shows how far it made it in the competition. 🙂
I just knew I would love you the moment you wrinkled that sweet forehead…even when you cried we all swooned over your precious little faces. I was definitely not alone, despite spending far longer than anticipated in the hospital, your parents were obviously, completely and totally in love. Really what’s not to love? You are perfection and your family is too…you are surrounded by so much love and warmth and have been blessed beyond measure to be born into such a beautifully loving and good humored family!
I knew your mama and I would hit it off immediately when I walked in on her with only her bra on…we immediately joked about how all modesty goes out the window after having a baby! We spent the rest of your beautiful session joking and laughing and sharing stories too, I had so much fun that I probably could have stayed another couple of hours if not for the vanishing sun. You are destined to have a beautifully fun and happy life and I am so glad I got to capture the very first chapter of it for you!
I hope you cherish these memories forever, sweet boy!
Your first “fan girl,”
P.s. These are just my very favorite photos, but if you scroll down to the bottom you can see the video with all of the photos and some video too!!
Just like that…another Christmas season has passed! We had so many wonderful moments this season that I thought I would share our story through photographs! Here are some of my very favorites along with a video of our Christmas Eve and Christmas morning magic! I do hope you enjoy our little life in photos!
I am going to have to start this with a little bit of a backstory…Frankie and I go to Target frequently (probably an understatement) while Liam is at school and it is too cold to go outside for our fun. It gives me a chance to do my grocery shopping and I try to make it fun for Frankie too. Along the way we met Alex, he is the Visual Merchandising Leader at Target and Frankie quickly adopted him as her best friend…then came Joni who is the an Executive Team Lead there and she quickly adopted us too! Thus starting a Target addiction that will not soon be cured!
This year Alex started giving Frankie a sticker name tag every time we came in and it quickly turned into “Frankie needs her own REAL name tag” so it wasn’t long before one was ordered and she started wearing it into the store every time we went. When we go to Target and see Joni or Alex they always get their “walkie” out so Frankie can call and find the location of the other one. Needless to say EVERY Target employee now knows Frankie by name…she is the little girl they hear on their walkies and the only little girl who has been designated “cutest team member!”
About a week ago Frankie and I saw Joni and Frankie called Alex on the walkie, Alex found us, but this time he came with a large gift bag and a card that screamed “Frankie,” check out the photos below:
As if that wasn’t enough, the bag contained Frankie’s very first Target uniform! So, what does this docu photographer do? Yep, you guessed it…I documented Frankie’s first day of work yesterday and I have a whole list of things I had no idea were required of Target employees:
- A Starbuck’s “coffee” is the only way to start a shift off right
- “Walkies” require quite a bit of training on your first day
- Cart testing is perfect for the littlest of employees
- A call to Santa to give your Christmas wish list is a normal everyday occurrence this time of year
- You must kiss and love on all of the lonely stuffed animals without a kid to call their own
- You are supposed to try every loose pillow to make sure they are customer ready before returning it back to the shelf
- The only way to ensure that the floors are clean is to lay down on your belly and test them for yourself
- You only have to count all of the “shiny” (Frankie’s current favorite color) nail polish for inventory
- When things get a little boring, hide-and-go-seek in the dressing room is a must
- Most importantly…HAVE FUN!!!
I bet you didn’t know either, did you? I am pretty sure though that we all want a job at Target now…and I am also pretty sure that this little girl is the luckiest girl around to have a Target to call her own and she has been blessed with the bestest of friends a girl could ask for!
I spent a blizzardy Sunday morning with the Fosters this last week and although the weather outside was frightful (see what I did there!:)) we had so much fun documenting their Christmas traditions! We spent a large portion of our time putting together their traditional Christmas Lego set, but then had time to venture (BRIEFLY) into the bitter cold to get a couple of photos in the snow…then came in and they got into their traditional Christmas PAJAMAS (I kept calling them pj’s and Brady was quick to correct me every time) and we took some photos of them all cuddled up in what must be the most comfy PAJAMAS I ever did see!
I happen to be a mom to three boys so I know exactly what to expect when photographing a boy dominant house and Paxton and Brady certainly did not disappoint! I had so much fun watching these two bicker and goof off! Seriously bring on all of the spitting, hitting, farting, burping…I could go on forever, but it truly makes my heart so happy to be able to document such a short lived (although difficult) time! Amy and Brett are definitely used to it and I think their photos turned out so beautifully real, which is always my goal! I do hope that you enjoy their album as much as I enjoyed documenting it!
Make sure to check out their video below with all of the photos from their session as well as some live video!
I have been so anxious to share this lovely album of my visit with the Jackson’s! When Kristin first told me that her family lived on acreage and she wanted to do their session there I was super excited, but I never could have imagined how amazing it would be! You see they live on their families land along with Chris’s parents and grandparents, and soon his brother too! We packed so much in, from throwing hedge-apples in their pond, to feeding chickens, the whole time I was there was magical.
This is what documentary photography is all about…taking your beautiful life and making art that will last a lifetime. Kristin described life with twin two year-olds, Lewis and Becca, 4 year old, Elliot, and 6 year old, Nora, as a permanent child’s birthday party…I completely understood what she was saying and I knew I would just adore her and her family from the get go, I just thrive in a little bit of crazy!! 😍 She was absolutely right, we did not stop for the entire hour and as a photographer I am so pleased…I just love so much of what we were able to capture in a short hour! I am so happy that I got to document this crazy time in their lives because it really will not last forever…despite what they may be feeling right now! Ha!
I hope you enjoy their beautiful photos below and their gorgeous video below that!
This post may be about two months overdue but I felt the need to put it out in the world, not just because it is important that I share about taking the time to be with my one and only, but also because our trip may be one that others are considering and I would have loved to know a little more about what I was getting myself into!
We spent three nights at the Collective Retreats outside of Vail and it really was dreamy…in a lot of ways. The website really does not do it justice, the scenery was FAR more beautiful than I could have imagined! All in all our time spent at Vail Collective was beautiful but I wish I had known a couple of things before I committed. I would say that it is totally worth it for a couple of nights, we had scheduled to be there four nights and we only made it three then decided to drive to Denver and get back to city life a day early! It really was a beautiful experience and I do not want anyone to read the negative things below and think that I do not feel that it was worth it…it really was! I just know that I wish that there were more honest reviews, like this, out there that explained a bit more of what we were getting ourselves into!
I have added some captions to many of the photos below. Feel free to comment with any questions you may have if you are thinking of making this trip!
The lovely young woman who checked us in then pulled around a UTV to load our bags and take us to our tent. We climbed a dirt road up the mountain to find not only our tent but the most spectacular view…things were looking up! It was dusk and the sun was setting so I quickly told Grey that he could not take his bags inside so I could take some photos of our amazing tent. We then spent about 15 minutes checking things out and really taking in the scenery! It was spectacularly beautiful and I just knew that it would be perfect!
Loved this bed the minute we tried it out but learned after the first night that our tent must not have been completely level and we felt like our feet were above our head the whole night…not a big deal at all, just an annoyance.
There was electricity in each tent, but it was solar powered, we turned it off everyday so that it would charge all day and we could use it at night. I was told that the units in the bathrooms were able to charge enough to use a blow dryer. The one time I tried the power blew immediately. 🤔
The bathrooms were a pleasant surprise…definitely not luxurious but better than most camping bathrooms!
The first time I went to shower I stood naked outside of the shower for a good 10 minutes waiting for it to warm up…it never did warm up so I had the coldest shower of my life! I was worried that if I got dressed and went to another bathroom I would find the same thing, so when I went back to the tent I told Grey to try another bathroom and he came back warm and toasty! The bathroom I went to did not have warm water the entire weekend, but the others worked just fine.
There are wood burning stoves for fires to keep these tents heated at night, but we received a text the morning that we were scheduled to check in that due to a fire ban we would not be able to use them. It was a bummer as I thought that since the stoves are enclosed they would still be in use…again, just something to know. I will say that we were NEVER too cold at night, they have heated blankets and the comforters are pretty heavy as well.
It seemed that there was a bathroom for every four or five tents…maybe a total of 18 tents, but I could be wrong about that!
The large tent (the first structure in this photo) was where you could have farm to table dinners, get drinks in the evening, they have a large fire pit there as well but there was a fire ban when we went so no fires. 🙁 We did not partake in any of the features here because the prices were really steep and had heard from a couple of other guests that their experience was good but not good enough for the price.
Those three structures were the larger $500+/night tents. I did read in a couple of reviews that the smell of the horses from the pastures directly behind the tent were pretty extreme and I definitely experienced it walking by…although I love the smell of horses so it would not have bothered me at all. Just felt like it should be said! 🙂 This is also a good indication of how long the walk is to the parking lot. There is a path that zigzags down to the dirt road below and the parking lot is to the right of the largest building on the far right. The website says that this is a 10-15 minute walk but I am positive that you would have to be really booking it to make it there that quickly.
I mean, have you ever seen something more magical?! Moments like this made all of the other little things disappear!
We were told that we could call or text ANY time of day or night to get anything. However, if you call it goes straight to voicemail and the response time to a text was about 10-20 minutes. We went out one night and came back at 12:00. I texted at 11:50 for a ride to our tent and did not hear back until 12:20 only to tell me that they cannot take guests to their tents that late due to the noise of the UTV. Made perfect sense to me, I just wish that we had been told that rather than “anytime you need a ride just call or text.” If I had known that there was a cutoff we would have been back before it…nothing better than walking up a mountain after a few too many drinks!
This is at the bottom of the mountain, where the larger tents are…still gorgeous, but nothing near as spectacular as what we had at the smaller tents.
There is horseback riding on the property and in the morning they would herd the horses in with an atv and it was so beautiful to watch!
We got poured on one afternoon so thought it would be a good time to get our free tastings at the Vines at Vail Winery. Those two tastings turned into many, many more and we really had a great time…spent too much money but had a GREAT time. ***Something else to keep in mind, they tell you that you cannot bring any alcohol from outside but can purchase from the winery on the property. I am not sure how they really monitor this and we definitely brought our own and never had an issue.
You have got to love those rain drops and blue skies…nothing better than a Colorado afternoon storm.
We filled our trip with everything from hiking the Mayflower Gulch Trail, shopping the Outlets at Silverthorne, trying to hike at Hanging Lake but the parking lot was full so we instead spent the afternoon at Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park, rode the gondola up to the top of the mountain and shopped in Vail and so much more…I have included the rest of my favorite images below. There really is no more magical place than the Rockies!
On our way up to Mayflower Gulch
Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park
Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park
Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park
Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park
Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park
View from top of the mountain in Vail
Vail-Battle Mountain Pass
Vail-Battle Mountain Pass