A Day in the Life... The Howard Family

I recently had the pleasure of photography the day in the life of a mom and dad, Jessica and Aaron Howard, who have been blessed with 8 kids. The experience was incredible and such a joy. As mom, Jessica, put it, "These are real life pictures that are very special to me. Some of them show the crazy, and most of them show the awesomeness of large family life." And I couldn't agree more.

Thank you so much for allowing me into your home, meet your kids, play with them, and photograph your life Howard Family! Enjoy!


Heissler Family Photo Session!

Kelly, Adam, Hatti, and Luke Heissler make up one of the most adorable families ever! Their family session took place in the beautiful Funks Grove area in Central Illinois. Their outfits fit were stunningly perfect and went so well with the fall foliage that is already appearing all around them! Although Hattie made me work for her affection at first (as most 3-4 year olds do), she ended up warming up to me and by the end we were best friends! She had a blast running through the field of wildflowers, picking and smelling them. Baby Luke was  such a joy and his blue plaid shirt accented the blue in his eyes making all of our jaws drop at his cute-ness. Even mom and dad were picture perfect!

Overall, this family session was a success and I cannot wait to watch these two kiddos grow!

First Man to ever book a photoshoot!

I had just finished up sweet Kyleigh's "Baby's first year" session... Jeremy (the dad) was loading props and outfits into the car when Emily (the mom) nonchalantly mentioned to me that it had been forever since her and her husband have had nice pictures taken together. I smiled and told her I totally understand as a photographer, I NEVER take pictures of me and my own family or even my own kids.

Later that night, I got it. I received the first message ever from a male inquiring about a photoshoot. Jeremy had overheard what Emily had said and since their anniversary was coming up he decided to book a surprise photoshoot for him and his wife. After deciding on a date and time we began to ponder locations. We decided to take a field trip to a special location that was near and dear to their hearts. Funks Grove Chapel in the Woods. It was where they had got married just 3 years earlier. What happens when you revisit the place you got married for your anniversary shoot? Magic... Magic happens

This session was beautiful and full of smiles, laughter, and kisses. The joy and the love between them even 3 years later is evident to any bystander. Happy Anniversary Emily and Jeremy! I wish you many more years of love and happiness!

Married for half a century...

You want to know one thing that is more beautiful than young love... old love.

A few weeks ago I had the honor of photography a 50th wedding anniversary party for Jerry & Esther Perschnick.

Their party was held at the Coyote Creek Golf & Country Club in Bartonville, Illinois, just outside of Peoria, Illinois. Everything was perfect. When guests entered they had a chance to write well wishes to the couple in a guest book and travel down this beautifully decorated table around the edges of the room. On this table was memorabilia and photos from every couple in Jerry and Esther's family over the last few generations who have made it to their golden anniversary. It is truly astonishing how many of these that this family has been blessed with.  At the end was the wedding dress that Esther wore 50 years ago while marrying Jerry as well as a beautiful quilt made by Esther's sister. After this you got to pick your table and chat with the MANY people who were there to celebrate this moment with their friends. One thing was quite clear. Jerry and Esther were so well loved. They were joined by friends from childhood and college roommates, cousins, colleagues, and sisters, brothers, nieces, nephews, grandchildren and other family from all over.

After enjoying some amazing food from Catering Peoria, the couple recreated their cake-cutting photos from their wedding by cutting a decadent 3-tier cake and serving it to each other. The cake was then passed around to the guests alongside the ORIGINAL napkins from Jerry & Esther's wedding in 1967.

Everything about this party was perfectly planned and absolutely stunning. But nothing was as beautiful or shined as brightly as the love between Jerry and Esther. The wedding may have been 50 years ago but the celebration continues to this day. These two people are great examples of what a marriage should be.

To Esther and Jerry: Your love and devotion inspires everyone around you. May the love that you share only grow stronger with time. Well wishes and Happy Anniversary!

Happy 6 months, June!

June is a very happy baby... and I think we can all agree that she is equally as adorable. June is another one of my "Baby's first year" baby's and I look forward to photographing her every 3 months! During her session, June was easy-going and yet so fun to watch. She was fascinated as to why we were just sitting outside in the middle of a field of flowers on a blanket. She loved touching the different textures of the blanket, running her fingers through the flowers, and of course her squishy little feet.

Happy 6 months June.... I can't believe you are already halfway there!