From Texas to Utah

The first weekend in October is big for Utah with a lot of people coming from out of town to participate in the LDS church's General Conference. The Swaim family was no different. While they were here for conference, they wanted family photos with the changing leaves. Even though it was a bit chilly, the warm sun was such a treat and created the most beautiful light. The colors did not disappoint either, and spending the evening with this family was the  best! They have the cutest and most well-behaved boys and I loved getting to know them a little while creating memories to last for them!! 

Mauntua Poppy Fields... Finally - Utah Photographer

I lived in Logan for two years and never made it to the poppy field once! I was so sad that I never made it work, that I was determined to have a family session this year. My cute little guy is 5 months old and LOVES being outside and the color orange, so we had to make it happen and we are so glad we did. 
Making friends in the photography world is sometimes hard, but one way I've found to do it is plan trade sessions, which is exactly what this shoot was. Sierra and I decided to swap family sessions up at the poppies so we both met there and took pictures of each other. We then swapped the photos so we could each edit our own to our liking. I'm so grateful for others that want to do trade sessions and we always have a blast! 
Getting to the poppies was a bit of an ordeal. I mapped out the time earlier in the day so that I knew when we'd need to leave by. As soon as we hopped on the freeway and checked google maps to figure out what time we'd arrive, it said it was going to take 45 minutes longer! There was so much traffic as we soon saw on the freeway and right before the exit to Mantua they were doing construction and it was a nightmare there too. It didn't stop us from having some beautiful light though!
I absolutely loved the poppies!! It was such a dream come true to walk through that beautiful half-trampled field. Henry loved all the color and we loved having these new family photos! 
I also loved being able to get just a couple with my sweetheart again. He's my rock and my biggest supporter and I love him more than words can express. And I absolutely love dancing with him. Sierra asked us to pretend we were slow dancing, and well, we took the opportunity and actually danced. Whenever we dance, I'm always reminded of when we were young and still giddy over each other and loved to slow dance. My heart still skips beats remembering it! 
I definitely plan to utilize the poppy fields more in the coming years, and can't wait to do a bridal session there sometime!! 

 

Southern Utah Elopement - Utah Wedding Photographer

Sun, sand and love. 

Anissa and Christopher promised each other forever on the gorgeous red sand beach of Sand Hollow State park. Even though the evening started out a bit rocky, it end with the most gorgeous light and two people finally wed. 

When we arrived at the designated beach a half hour before the wedding, it was still filled with beach-goers. Trucks, boats, trailers, and people filled the entire reserved beach and panic started to set in. After asking and asking and calling the park rangers, and asking some more, people finally were on their way out! We started getting things out and ready for the ceremony when a truck and trailer got stuck in the sand right where the ceremony was to take place. The owner decided to leave his trailer and drove off, so we worked around it to set everything up. It was stressful, but at least we could work around it. Something always tends to go wrong during a wedding, and I'm glad it was this and not something horrible! 

Once everything was set up, the sun was perfectly placed in the sky and we had the most amazing warm light that was so beautiful and perfect. Anissa was such a stunning bride, with a gorgeous floral crown made by @bybloomers and she got her dress at Dillards! It was so perfect for this beach wedding and I loved that she was bare foot. It was the most perfect detail that completed her perfect look. The look in Christopher's eyes as she walked down the isle to be his wife was so precious. I love watching grooms, their eyes really do show just how much they love their brides. The ceremony was simply perfect. They promised each other forever and became husband and wife. Normally my favorite part is where they kiss for the first time as husband and wife, but this time around my favorite was the "best man speech".

After the ceremony before they walked back up the isle together, Anissa's brother got up to give a speech. He started by saying that he wasn't good at speeches so he was going to read something off his phone. As he started reading, Anissa immediately recognized what was going on and tears came to her eyes. As a surprise her sister who is serving an LDS mission in the Philippines wrote a letter to be read at the wedding since she wouldn't be able to be there as her maid of honor. The letter was so touching and had everyone (including me) in tears. It seriously was the most beautiful surprise and by far the most precious moment I've been able to capture as a photographer. 

Anissa and Christopher have the most fun and relaxed families and after the family portraits we had a little time to do some formals of just the two newly weds. We had the most stunning light and everything was just so perfect! It was a beautiful way to end such a special day. 

Congrats Anissa and Christopher! Here's to forever!

 

 

Country Barn Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Lexi and Jake are finally husband and wife! 

It was the most beautiful summer day for a country wedding in the little town of Bothwell, Utah. Lexi and Jake planned the most beautiful day in a few short weeks so that Lexi's grandmother who is sick could be there. There was such a special bond that was so evident between Lexi and her grandma, and I'm glad she was able to get pictures with her on this special day. 

The ceremony, complete with a gorgeous barn door backdrop, was so sweet and I am so excited that these two are married! Their bridals were fun, but their wedding was a blast! Amazing venue and amazing family and friends. After the ceremony and family photos came one of my favorite parts of the day: photographing the details. The cake, the bouquets, the decor, everything was just so beautiful and perfect. The cake was especially one of my favorites. A gorgeous cut out topper on a white cake with flowers and a special cutting knife with a ribbon that says "Today I marry the bravest". Jake is a firefighter and I'm so glad they paid tribute to the wonderful service that he provides for our community. My other favorite of the details was the bouquets. They were stunning!! And made by Jake's ever so talented sister-in-law Natalie. I loved the red and pink color scheme and the little pink buds were so unique and pretty! 

We also had time for another mini bridal session and as special request from the bride's mom, we took some photos on a teeter-totter. Adorable! Especially with the wind catching her train and veil. We also took some of my favorite portraits in front of the beautiful barn wood! Lexi and Jake are just so in love and it was an honor to photograph them. 

My all time favorite part of wedding days are the dances. I love the daddy daughter dances, and usually tear up a bit, but it's the first dance that gets me. It always reminds me of dancing with my husband for the first time as husband and wife, and I just can't help but reminisce and be so entirely happy for the new couple. 

Dancing, cake cutting, garter and bouquet tossing all leads up to the exit, and Lexi and Jake decided on a sparkler exit, and I just love them! I hope they never go out of style! 

Congrats Lexi and Jake! I'm so glad you are finally Mr. and Mrs. and hope you have the best married life ever!!

Mantua Bridals - Utah Wedding Photographer

"When you love and laugh abundantly, you live a beautiful life."

I don't know if there is a more fitting quote to describe this vibrant couple. Lexi and Jake laughed and smiled and giggled the entire session, and it was so contagious! I couldn't help but fall in love with their love, especially since their story is so near and dear to my own. Lexi and Jake met country swing dancing, where Lexi told her friend that Jake was the only one in the room she would dance with. Little did she know that her friend knew Jake and promptly walked up and introduced the two of them. Jake is a firefighter and a really good dancer and won over Lexi's heart. They were planning to elope, but Lexi's grandmother has fallen ill with cancer, and they moved up their wedding. I was so honored that they chose me to photograph their wedding, because it will be a county wedding in a barn and that makes my heart SING!! I'm a county girl at heart as well and I am so excited to be shooting her wedding!
Looking ahead at the weather before their bridals, we were worried about rain. We decided to push through and hope for the best. Well, that paid off because we had the most gorgeous light and the whole field at Box Elder Campground in Mantua. We had so much fun walking around that field getting gorgeous portraits and getting to know this adorable couple who is so in love! After finishing the session and driving away, the rain started. Just a few drops, but I'm so glad it held off so we could get these gorgeous photos. Enjoy them down below! And I cannot wait to shoot her wedding and blog about it soon!! 

Baby Grace - Utah Newborn Photography

The baby hunger struggle is real!! Even though I just had my baby 3 months ago, shooting this tiny piece of Heaven made me want another! 
My husband's sweet cousin asked me to take pictures at the hospital after she had her baby and I was truly honored. Newborn babies are such a precious sight, and loved by all who come to see them. Mamas just light up the whole room with the love they have for their little babe. They carried their baby for 9 months just waiting for the moment they get to meet them face to face. The love that mama's have for their babies is just simply incredible and to photograph it, is really such a breathtaking experience. It gets even more adorable when there are older siblings gushing over their new baby. But, the cutest and most adorable of all is new daddies. There is just something so special about a dad holding his newborn baby. It is such a tear jerker for me. I get all misty-eyed even thinking about it! You can see the love, admiration and protection in his eyes as he gently cradles a tiny babe in his loving arms. It's one of my absolute favorite sights in the whole entire world. 
It was so much fun to capture 3 older siblings loving and playing with their new sister. I honestly could've stayed all night with them just watching how cute they were arguing over whose turn it was to hold the baby, and who had held her longer. Baby Grace has so much love and support surrounding her, and will grow up in the most loving and adoring family. Congratulations to Brookeh and Mike, and welcome to the world sweet baby! 

Greenhouse Styled Shoot Bride & Groom

To go along with the two other gorgeous couples from my last post, here is the lovely bride and groom! Keaton and Charley were the perfect models, and just glowed the whole entire time. Did I mention they've only been dating TWO WEEKS?!? Crazy lovebirds! What a better date than to get all dolled up in fancy wedding garb and have tons of photographers tell you just how gorgeous and in love you are. They really were good sports and had such a blast dancing and kissing and being beautiful for us. It was such a magical shoot and so green and lush. The details that we shot were incredible and the amazing vendors are listed below. The cake was a pure white dream topped with lovely flowers that matched the bride's bouquet, and the invitations were so gorgeous and fit the theme so perfectly. It really is the small details that make such a huge difference on your wedding day. 
Brides, here's a tip. If you want green and color and there aren't spots like that outdoors, like in the winter, then choose a greenhouse for your location! You'll have gorgeous flowers and lots of color and variety and it's such a unique place to be. I had my engagements taken at a small greenhouse in Logan, Utah because the flowers weren't quite out by the time the date came. It was so much fun to wander a greenhouse and have our photos taken. I'll always have a special place in my heart for greenhouses!

Vendors:

Styling @rachellemonaephotos
Models #KeatandChar2017
Makeup @theperfectlookbysarah
Hair @elegancebyem
Florals @flowergirlut
Cake @sweetcravings12
Invitations @katieblakeleyphotography
Hairpins @gemsandbonesjewelry
Dress & Jewelry @latterdaybride
Tie @thedailyknot_

 

Greenhouse Couples Styled Shoot

What better place to host a styled shoot than in a gorgeous greenhouse! Rachelle of Rachelle Monae Photography set up the most adorable and fun shoot with three amazing couples! Two anniversary/couples and a bride and groom. I'll share a little bit here about the two couples and my next post will focus on the bride and groom. 



Jess & Judy
This beautiful and special couple was pure magic in front of the camera. Married for 53 years, they still have that newly wed glow and the love they have for each other just radiates. The smiles they had on their faces as they danced around the isles was so contagious and we all couldn't help but smile and giggle right along side them. Jess and Judy are the epitome of what I want to be like when I grow up. I want to be that cute couple that still holds hands, and kisses and has fun together! They are my new #couplegoals !!  

 

Natalie & Joe
I really hope that anniversary shoots become a popular thing, because I LOVE shooting married couples! There is such a special spark about photographing a bride and groom, but there is something even more lovely and unique about shooting couples that have been married and still are completely head over heels for each other. Natalie and Joe are seriously so stinkin' adorable! They've been married for 12 years and have two little boys. I am sure those boys are super handsome too!! This is what they had to say about marriage:
     "It is such a blessing to have a best friend to spend each day with and hold to through struggles and joy. How lonely it would be without one another. Marriage is hard, but as we recognize one another's strengths and honor the good in the other person, we find ourselves in gratitude for what the other person brings to our marriage."
Marriage is such a beautiful thing and Natalie and Joe are such beautiful examples of making it work! 

Amazing Vendors: 
Jess & Judy
Styling @rachellemonaephotos
Tie @thedailyknot_

Natalie & Joe
Styling @rachellemonaephotos
Models @hadley_crew
Makeup @theperfectlookbysarah
Hair @elegancebym
Jewelry @charmingsarabella
Dress @followyourblissdresses