• children,  family

    Miss Stella

    Miss Stella turned two at the beginning of this month. No matter the kiddo, mine or anothers, I can’t seem to grasp how quickly a year passes. I have been trying to soak in a few “moments” a day with my boys in an effort to slow time and freeze memories of each day in my head. That is what photographs do. They are as close to magic as I will ever get. Freezing sacred truths of our everyday into a treasure again and again. I am so thankful for magic.



    toes and pearls a great pairing.

    Stella and her adorable family. Can’t wait to meet her new little brother Cruz soon!





    Every little girl needs a photo of her hitching a ride on Daddy. Wish I had one like this…. I always preferred to walk and dance on his toes though.



    It was a birthday shoot after all so Stella was rewarded with a cake pop. She was the cleanest toddler I have ever seen around cake but she enjoyed it just as much.

    Love the look of wonder in her eyes…. or is that just the beginning of a sugar high. 🙂


  • family,  newborn,  Uncategorized

    fall is for family

    Fall came weeks ago when school started and all the busyness which it brings with it but fall weather came abruptly this week. I am working feverishly to get through mountains of photos of beautiful people with beautiful lives and amazing families. I am so happy to be busy now and I look forward to getting caught up so that I can slow down to soak in the fall with my own family.

    The sunshine of last week is hiding somewhere behind those clouds outside and I am pining for a few more days of indian summer before I pull out the sweaters and boots. A grey morning calls for curling up in a blanket while holding one of my boys and nursing a hot cup of coffee with cocoa in it. Since I have to get moving this morning instead of having a lazy day, I’ll post some photos of a new family of four taking a slow day to soak in all the goodness a family brings.



    Three grils as my Tommy would say. A treasure for them so see their Mama young and adoring them so.

    Look at those cheeks! LOVE.

    Sweet little pink bundle send straight from heaven.


  • wedding

    signed. sealed. delivered.


    Ryan saw her across the room at high school party in her kitchen. He was drawn to her beautiful eyes. Watching her then he knew he wanted her beside him. Bethany soon learned how wonderful she felt when he made her laugh. They dated on and off until she realized that there was no one else in the world that compared to him.

    Ryan, Bethany and her mother worked together to plan a beautiful wedding. Along the way Bethany entered and won many wedding contests. She entered her mother, Fay Blackburn, in a brides.com Mom of Honor contest. Bethany submitted an essay detailing what makes Fay so special as a mom. “When I was born, I was left on a door step in India. I was put on an adoption list and passed up 12 times. My mom was finally the person who said ‘yes.'” said Bethany. Fay walked Bethany down the isle in a designer gown brides.com honored her with for being the 2010 Mom of Honor. Bethany and Ryan won an all-inclusive trip to Cancun, Mexico for her winning entry too. Fay walking Bethany down the isle felt auspicious. Fay was the first person in Bethany’s life to say “yes”…. Fay gave Bethany’s hand to Ryan so he could continue to say “yes” to her for the rest of it.


    Ryan and Bethany… may your walk through life be blessed with happiness and beautiful memories. Thank you for welcoming me in to document your beautiful wedding.

    All my best-




    Bethany, her mama and the bridesmaids started the day getting their hair and makeup done at Parkwest Studio in downtown Vancouver, Washington.

    Completely jealous of those eyes, Bethany. Everyone can see what Ryan was talking about when he said he was drawn to your eyes.

    Cute. Cute. Cute….. love the personalized hangers.



    Once everyone was ready,  this stunning bride…….


    went to meet this very handsome groom.


    Look at him crushing on her. These two flashed super-charged smiles all. day. long.

    These next photos….. show the absolutely perfect weather.




    Mr and Mrs Isaacson!!



    signed. sealed. delivered. I’m yours.




  • Uncategorized



    Some things that are so easy to love about Easter.

    vibrant colors. chocolate. pretty dresses. boys in their Sunday best. chocolate. feasts. egg hunts. jelly beans. smiles. knowing I am forgiven.


    Can you stand how pretty this arrangement is? Wow!  I want one for each room in my house next year. I think I will make it happen in some of the small rooms with mason jars. My husband’s talented Uncle John put this together.



    Sugar and spice and everything nice from this trio of girls. They reminded me of Easter in their beautiful dresses and black patent shoes. sigh.



    I am in love with these vintage school desks too. It transported me to grade school and playing school and office for hours with any girlfriend who would tolerate me. These girls make me want to shoot dress-up time and tea parties. How do you think I could coax them into inviting me? They were reading Fancy Nancy so I might have to check it out at the library and do some brainstorming.

  • life

    where’s my ship

    I have only been to Seattle a hand full of times. On my first trip there, during college, I met the man I would marry. We returned over spring break this year, after 16 years, with a lot more life under our belt and three little boys.

    We hit many of the major tourist attractions and we all enjoyed the outings and each other. Sometimes just a change of scenery is so good for the soul.

    Only took my point and shoot. With three of them and Greg being only two, I am not ready to take a bigger camera. My head and eyes crave a big camera but a bigger camera means sacrificing a hand for keeping boys out of harm’s way. I need both of mine and a gaggle of guardian angels to feel comfortable in a new place. Maybe I need to ease up a little, but I am only willing to give a little space to Keith so far.

    Thought I would have time to write more about our trip but somehow life always seems to have different plans. Spent the afternoon in emergency getting stitches in Greg’s forehead. YIKES! Wanted to get these up before it is time to post Easter’s colorful bounty.

  • family,  life,  Uncategorized

    it held a lot

    i didn’t know it was the end when I woke up yesterday.

    it seemed like any of a string of days we have had between last October and April. cold. wet. gray. sleep. repeat. but today the constants shifted. not in the weather. not in the people exactly but for the first time in over 8 years a room was missing something.

    i looked hard for it when it was time to bring it into our home so long ago. nothing too plain. nothing too modern. nothing to flimsy. it had to have a strength of style and build. clean lines and a warm presence.

    i looked hard for it again today as a blank floor sprung up in front of me. the floor was ready for something new. but i don’t know if i was ready. if i am ready.

    something new lies in its place. something aesthetically less beautiful. the new object is more functional now. i am not sure it is just the beauty of the object which has been replaced.

    there have been times today when I wished I would have known it was the end so I could have taken a photo of the last night. i am so sentimental. painfully at times.

    there have been times today when I have been grateful I didn’t know it was the end so I could just move it out quickly like removing a bandaid.

    it was in the twilight of the day, when the only noises I hear are the drip, drip, drip of a gutter which needs repaired and my typing, when I am fighting back the tears. i am trying to etch the feeling, the smell of the room, the miracles of what this object has held for me.

    it held my babies. when the day had gone and my arms, head and heart needed a rest. it held all three of my precious babies.

    the room won’t ever be the same. the paint will soon change it and the rest of the objects will scatter or disappear. an old resident will move back into the room and the current one down the hall. new memories will be etched in my heart of the room. i look forward to embracing them.

    but today i am scared of loosing the memories which have changed my soul.






  • newborn

    don’t fence me in

    Thank goodness for the change of seasons. I don’t need a lot of change in my life. I am pretty boring. Set in my ways. If I find something I like to eat at a restaurant, I don’t deviate from it. I like comfortable shoes. I may really like the idea of beautiful heels but can’t break my mold of comfort. But I look forward to the change of the seasons. There is beauty in the fresh start of anything. I am thankful the change of the seasons forces me to shift into a different mindset.

    Yesterday, when a strange bright orb showed up outside, the boys and I headed to the backyard. They dug in the dirt and quickly found a way to make more mud than I thought was possible without a hose. I dug in the dirt and felt the warmth and fresh air calm me.

    I missed the smell of cut grass, clean soil and a spring breeze.

    Spring is when I get to be outside again digging and dreaming of pretty flowers, yummy veggies and more fresh air. Even when John and I were first married and we lived in a dinky apartment one spring day I desperately ran to Fred Meyer to purchase a few pots, soil and flowers for our patio. It was like a primal need reared itself. I grew up in Montana and Wyoming. I think it is fair to say I made more mud pies than my kiddos have ever dreamed of. I guess old habits die hard.

    I am a romantic. Shocked aren’t you. I am in “love” with the notion of many things. I have always romanticized about living long ago on a working ranch. Because of where I grew up,  I have always loved wandering in an open field, sitting on a giant rock warmed by the sun or laying in wildflowers as the breeze danced over my skin.

    I am in love with land.

    I will never be a city girl. I don’t mind visiting. I have fun learning new things and I feed off the chaotic beauty only a big city has but after a few days I feel claustrophobic. Get me some clear sky and an empty horizon stat. Lucky for me Vancouver seems to offer enough of a balance between city and country that I feel at home.

    Springtime brought a new life to Michelle and Jason’s home. A new boy to coo and snuggle. Little Landry is the perfect addition to this adorable family. Big sister and brother are so proud. Mom and Dad so blessed.

    I looked up the meaning of Landry, as I do with almost every baby I photograph. Landry means land ruler. What a perfect fit for the beginning of my spring. The spring is getting me back to the land. Who knows what Landry will grow up to like or dislike. But with land in his name maybe Landry and I will have something in common some day.

  • children,  family


    February conjures up feelings and images of sweetness. From the conversation hearts and chocolate treats to everything dripping in pink and red decor. It is a relief from the dark winter days and the cold nipping at us to be wrapped in the hubbub that comes with Valentine’s Day. Even if it is a little much at times.

    I love that even though I have a house full of boys they will tolerate craft projects involving red and pink hearts and glitter for this holiday. I love that they wrinkle their noses when an ad on tv or in the newspaper shows people kissing. I love that I can let the rules about candy and sweet confections relax a little and watch their faces light up with sugar and giggles. I love that even though we are not quite to spring Valentine’s Day feels like a promise it isn’t that far away.

    Just before Valentine’s Day I got a dose of sweetness from the Cuthbert family. Little Grady was quite the charmer and adorable. Quiet Brooklyn was cautiously cheerful during the entire shoot. Mom wanted to capture their family of four as they are waiting to welcome number 5 soon. What a lucky little gent the newest Cuthbert is to be welcomed into such a loving family.

  • life


    A candle is lit. Prayers and Hail Marys have been said. Calls have been made. I still feel helpless and lost.

    Determined to make food and drop it off at your home, I have spent nearly an hour sifting through recipes trying to find the right meal to sustain your family. Every fifth recipe is from your kitchen. The only one I want to make for them I don’t have all the ingredients for. Nothing will sustain them but you.

    I see your face, feel your smile and hear your words. You are a fighter, a go-getter, a loyal friend and one of the smartest women I know. You are unafraid to be yourself, wise beyond your years and a nurturer to so many. Now, you need to be nurtured.

    Since the dawn of our friendship I have imagined how silly we would look playing card games on quiet afternoons with grey hair and hearing aids. I have worked, played, laughed and cried with you.

    God, please bring d back to us. Heal her so that her boys can have her back. Heal her so that we might laugh and cry and enjoy more life with her. Lord, ease her pain, calm her worries and hold her close to you now and forever, but please bring her back to us.

  • family,  life


    Some days were so right and some days were so wrong in 2010 and I want more to be on the right side. Every morning, I want to choose joy. To choose love. To choose learning. To choose communication. Somewhere, sometime, while trying to make a life, I have forgotten a little bit about living it. I need to embrace living again. In the moment, in the little things, in my daily routines. Soak in my blessings and let them be enough.

    So, it is time to make a change. A choice to live a little more and quite worrying about trying to make a life. Do I know exactly how to make it happen? No. All I know is it starts with making a choice. And I am pretty sure I won’t be successful everyday. But if I start living a little more each day, maybe the living in the moment, in the joy, will become more of the normal and I long for that. At church we say “Peace be with you.” I am seeking that peace.

    My hopes

    • Communicate more
    • Laugh more
    • Rest more
    • Breathe more
    • Love more
    • Have our  family photographed, by someone other than me.
    • Take an perfectly, imperfect family photograph with all five of us in it every month. Crazy, unkept, serious, dirty, laughing… however we are together, photograph it.
    • Learn to say no.
    • Learn to say yes more to the spontainious wishes of my kiddos. Mom, let’s paint. Yes! Mom, let’s go for a bike ride. You too. Yes! Mom, let’s eat cookies. Yes! Mom, let’s do nothing but play games all day. Yes!

    The list could be a mile long but then it would defeat the purpose of change for 2011. I hope to look back on 2011 and be proud to have built a stronger life by having chosen to live it fully.

    Happy New Year!

    Just a cute pic of my littlest saying goodbye to the baby jesus from one of our creches.