Before I start out this very special blog post, I would like to comment on what a wonderful job Jordan and Melina did planning a destination wedding from across the globe! From the scenery, to the details to the intimate feel of the wedding, everything was done impeccably and it made everyone realize what a very special event we were all taking part in. With that being said, Jordan and Melina were married at the beautiful Castello Del Trebbio, in Santa Brigida right above Florence. Here is some more info about this stunning venue,storiaaziendaingleseridotta, STORIAGRUPPOTREBBIOinglese-1. I’ve been to Italy before, Rome and Venice a few years ago but nothing like this. I was a young traveling back packer staying in hostels, this time I was there for work, I was staying at a private villa and I was in the gorgeous country side, a short train ride away from Florence. It was an amazing experience. Allow me to please walk you through the day first in words and then in photos. I started out the day with getting ready photos, the girls’ villa was brimming with excitement and could feel the wonderful energy. Our next venture was a “First Look”. When I met with Melina and Jordan about a month before the wedding to finalize details, when we worked all of the timing out, we figured we would have an hour in between the ceremony and reception to do family formals, bride and groom portraits, bridal party stuff etc. Which is normal and pretty much how most weddings go, as I was laying in bed that night running through the day in my head again, I thought “That is not enough time”. For a wedding here in the states I can always make it work although I usually recommend a first look to my clients, most of the time an hour can get the job done. But I explained to Melina, I felt like for a destination wedding in such a beautiful locale, we should allow a lot of time for bride and groom photos, I did not want this wedding to feel rushed. So Melina took my advice and did the “First Look” and I was so happy that she did! We had plenty of time to do some wonderful photos of her and Jordan, as well as bridal portraits. Her make-up and his suit were fresh and it was a nice way to relax and get their minds into the moment and not worrying about the ceremony, although I do have to say that they were 2 very relaxed and laid back bride and groom 🙂 After the “First Look” we walked to the Castle where the ceremony was held in the court yard. Yes, they were married in the Courtyard of a castle!! How fantastic to be able to tell your children that! The ceremony was perfect, short and sweet. BTW, the light was amazing that day. Soft, diffused and just great the whole day. After the ceremony we did our family formals, bridal party photos and then headed to the restaurant where dinner was held. Now, unlike most American weddings, this was not just an hour and a half dinner where everything was done according to specific times and the wedding coordinator was running around making sure everything was done to the minute, nope, when you’re in Italy you sit and enjoy your food and wine. 5-6 courses, you laugh, you talk, you eat, you enjoy life. It was wonderful. The food was delish, although I didn’t try the rabbit 🙂 And the wedding cake, which was a real Italian wedding cake, was possibly, the best dessert I had ever tasted!! complete with a couple on a vespa cake topper! After dinner everyone headed a few feet away into the dance room. And believe me, dancing was going on for sure!! Everyone stayed late into the night, let loose and just had a great time. Needless to say it was a wonderful wedding and the trip of a lifetime. Congratulations to Jordan and Melina. May your lives be filled with love, light and happiness.
I photographed baby Dakota back in May. She was only about 2-3 weeks old. She is super precious and cuddly. Like most newborns she had a wide array of moods during our shoot 🙂 We photographed all over the house and outside as well. I knew I wanted to get a few shots of her swaddled up in a colorful blankie, so we wrapped her up and as I was looking for a place to lay her down or prop her up, I spotted this amazing mustard yellow recliner. I asked, Kyrsten (Dakota’s Mommy) if we could use the chair. She then went on to explain that, that was the chair that her Grandma Lee used to rock Kyrsten in when she was a baby and Dakota’s middle name is Lee, after Grandma Lee, so perfect!! I love stories like that, it always make the shots so special….well here are a few of little miss Dakota Lee. It was an honor as always 🙂
I have been reflecting a lot lately. I took the plunge almost exactly one year ago, deciding to quit my full-time job in corporate America and put my 150% into my business and into raising my baby who was then only 4 months old. It was one of the hardest and scariest decisions I had ever made. I always knew in the back of my mind that one day I would have to choose between a regular 9-5 job and my photography business. I simply did not have the tine and energy to give it the love it deserved. So I did what I am, by nature, so prone to never do, because I’m a virgo and always thinking practically and going by the books, and I listened to my heart. This past year has been a time of learning and growing. I’ve worked harder than I ever thought i would. Basically working 2 jobs, being a mom and a small business owner. Taking care of a baby all day and editing photos during nap times and late through the night. Some times I am just purely exhausted but then I have a great wedding or a wonderful portrait shoot and it always reminds me that I am on the right track. I just started reading a book called, “A history of Photography From 1839-Present”. Which I actually think I read in my first semester of college but it was so long ago that I don’t remember 🙂 It is so amazing to read about the beginning of this wonderful medium, how much it has evolved and to wonder what it will be like when my daughter is in school. We’ve really come a long way and I find so much inspiration from the photographers’ who started it all. So I’m going to forge on and keep working really hard, be true to myself and remember that there is always more to learn, more ways to improve and just like in life, we should always reflect on the past and improve for the future.
Ricky and Christina were married in April at the beautiful St. Pius Church in Redwood City. With the reception to follow at The Marriott in San Mateo. Christina looked very glamorous and Ricky handsome of course. They had a large and very fun wedding party. Not to mention a really fantastic Mariachi band! We had a wonderful time at their wedding and the day went smooth as can be. Congratulations to Ricky and Christina!