rachel and darren {esession}

Rachel and Darren are ADORABLE! We seriously adore them and are so excited to be a part of their wedding. We met up with them at one of our favorite places The Shady Lady Saloon (where these two also had their engagement party) to start our shoot. It was a blast hanging out and hearing some REALLY hilarious stories. I love it when clients feel like friends we’ve had for years… it just makes me so stinkin’ happy.

How much do we love Rachel and her super cute expressions? Personally, I adore them.

As we were finishing up the shoot the sun decided to come join us and it was magic! Seriously, it had been SO LONG since we had actual honest to goodness sunshine during a shoot that Dustin and I went a bit crazy. I just need to remember that feeling in August when it’s ALL SUNSHINE ALL THE TIME! But seriously, how can you not LOVE light like this?

Rachel and Darren we LOVE YOU! Thank you so much for an amazing session and for making us love you even more than we already did. We are SOOOOO excited for your wedding and can’t wait to witness the beginning of your lives together as husband and wife! Hooray!
Check out the SLIDESHOW HERE or below for more super beautiful pictures of this perfect pair.

allyson and ben {wedding}

I don’t think there are enough words for how freaking awesome Allyson and Ben are. They are AMAZING and we LOVE them. Dustin and I were thrilled to shoot their wedding a little over a week ago. They were amazing to work with, and made our job so dang easy! It was fabulous. We arrived after most of the getting ready was over, but I loved catching a few shots of Allyson’s final preparations. Her mom and sisters were such a big help to her!

While I was busy with the ladies, Dustin got right down to business photographing the fellas. They are one handsome bunch.

And then it was First Look time. Oh how my heart flutters with first looks! We were afraid it was going to start pouring rain in the middle of them seeing each other, but Allyson and Ben braved the outdoors to see each other. Seriously, this is one of the best first looks we have ever witnessed… there was just electricity in the air. Ben was so anxious to see his bride – and I can’t blame him!

Already emotions were running high, and it was just out of this world! We had lots of time prior to the ceremony starting for portraits of our beautiful couple and their awesome bridal party. I so enjoyed every single one of them! It was a blast!

Then it was time for a little photo lovefest with Allyson and Ben. Holy moly these two are photogenic. I felt like I could do no wrong… just point and snap and MAGIC!

as I mentioned in their sneak peek, we did some of their portraits at a gun store. Thanks to the staff of Just Guns who were so cool with us crashing their story on a stormy Saturday. They let us do whatever we wanted and they pictures turned out super fun.

And then it was time to get these two married! I loved their ceremony… they read letters to each other, had friends share quotes and had a lot of tears and laughs. Perfect way to begin their lives together!

Then it was party time! And how cute is all the origami? Allyson’s cousin made their super cool cake topper and they had a tree full of paper cranes. I loved it!

I LOVE this picture of Allyson and her dad as they started their dance… and I even MORE love that Allyson’s mom joined in on the dance half way through. I’m TOTALLY doing that when my Lauren girl gets married.

Allyson and Ben THANK YOU for being so freaking over the top amazing. We LOVE that your wedding was the start of our 2010 season. Thank you for sharing your love with us, and for making us feel so much a part of your family. We love you guys and wish you a lifetime of happiness! Check out the SLIDESHOW HERE or below for more images of Allyson and Ben’s fabulous wedding.

Wedding and Reception Location and Catering: Croatian-American Cultural Center
Flowers: DIY
DJ: Family Friend with mad skills
Cake: Freeport Bakery
Bridal Hair and Makeup: Jessica Stine Spanish Fly Hair Garage

The Happiest Place {retro blogging: personal}

In the fall of last year, when things were crazy and all I wanted to do was throw my computer out the window I called Dustin in the middle of the day and said, “We are going to Disneyland next month. I’m booking it now.” He kindly didn’t stop me and I booked our very first family vacation. Dustin and I went to Disneyland on our honeymoon, but hadn’t been back since Lauren made her way into our lives. We were so excited because Lauren LOVES all things princess and she loves Mickey Mouse and The Castle. We made the mistake of telling her we were going WAY earlier than we should have, and it was all she talked about for WEEKS AND WEEKS! Finally, the day arrived and we made our way from the Disneyland hotel to the Magic Kingdom. Lauren RAN all the way to the Monorail station.

Here she is on the monorail! So excited to go see all her “friends.”

I honestly wasn’t very good at taking pictures on our trip because I was having a little too much fun, but I’m so glad for the shots I got. Lauren LOVED the rides, and loved the characters. We loved being there as she experienced it all for the first time. It was really, really awesome.

She LOVED meeting Mickey and Stitch at California Adventure and watching the High School Musical 3 parade. She LOVES HSM3 and knows ALL the songs by heart and sings them A LOT. I thought she would have been jumping up and down and singing during the parade, but she was absolutely shell shocked by the whole experience. It was really cute. After the parade we were off to Ariel’s Grotto for lunch with the princesses. Of course, she wore her fabulous Snow White dress.

The other cool part of our vacation was that on day two my BFF Jill and her adorable family happened to be at Disneyland too, so we got to spend some time with them and it was such fun. It also ment that Dustin and I got to go to the Haunted Mansion because we had tried the day before with Lauren and she would NOT have it. We had to use the wimp exit… sad but true. Here is the ONLY picture of my and Jill… again, not so good with the picture taking.

We had SUCH a great time with our friends, and such a great trip. Lauren loved all the rides. She was JUST tall enough to do Star Tours and Splash Mountain and she loved them. But she REALLY loved the Rockets and the Buzz Lightyear Astro Blasters. She also loved the snacks I packed.

And we both loved having our faces painted… they did a really awesome job!

Disneyland did just what it was supposed to – helped us have a lot of fun and spend some much needed time together. Lauren STILL talks about it every day. She talks about the Castle and the Pricesseses and The Spinny Cups all the time. I love that we got to make these memories with her… and honestly, I can’t wait to go back with her again.

allyson and ben {sneak peak}

Saturday marked the beginning of the 2010 wedding season here at SMP and HOLY MOLY did Allyson and Ben do us proud. I seriously can’t wait to get these pictures all rocked out because we had the most fun ever photographing these two and their amazing friends and family. I just am so excited about 2010! And these two have set the tone! I mean, when I said to these two crazy kids, “Hey, look! A gun store! Let’s take my liberal self in there and take some pictures of you guys with big ol’ guns!” They RAN INTO THE STORE! Yeah, I love them.

More to come! So stay tuned!

allyson and ben

Hey Sarah!

OH MY GOODNESSSSSS!!!!!!!!! I LOOOOOVE the pictures!!!!! I can’t even tell you how much I love them- all my family members have seen them, not to mention the millions of facebook peeps that have glimpsed a couple (due to various profile pics), everyone at my work has been to your website…and I’m not even kidding, the list goes on and on. I even sent 2 to my model agents up here, and they LOVE them!

Ben and I couldn’t be happier with you and Dustin, and we are so thankful that we went with you guys. Seriously, it has been such a blessing to be able to look back at all the pics and remember what a fantastic time we had at the wedding. Honestly, pictures were the most important thing to me, and I am just so happy with them.

Thank you so much,
Allyson and Ben