As a kid, yes even in California, the winter was always a special time of the year. In fact, when I was a kid back in the 80’s, I remember it snowed once at my house. Yes, you heard that right, It SNOWED in sunny California at my Westlake village home. That would never happen now, but we did actually have winter here once upon a time… on occasion.

I made a mini snowman on top of my mom’s car that year. It was amazing and the only time that ever happened where I grew up. It used to hail a lot in the winter as well. I used to collect cups of it and keep them in the freezer as if they were little magical beads of ice.

The most magical part of Christmas for me was my parents. My dad has this thick piece of felt and on it are three giant silver bells. His home, now a two-story house, was a small one story home when I was a kid. My dad and mom were really good at creating that Christmas magic. On Christmas eve, my dad would climb onto the roof and yell, “HO HO HO!” For myself and all of the neighborhood kids. Mind you, this was way before the internet and being able to “track Santa” on Google Maps. My dad would stomp on the roof above my bedroom, run down the stairs and into my room (where my mom would be sitting with me) whilst I would be freaking out. this went a little something like this… Me: “Did you hear him? Santa is here!” of which my dad would reply, “I just spoke to Santa, he said he will come back when you are asleep. He won’t stay if you are awake.” This prevented me from ever wanting to catch him or see him. This girl wanted her presents and wasn’t about to risk that from happening. I would close my eyes tightly, trying my hardest to fall back asleep. The next morning I would run out to see what he brought, filled with Christmas excitement. This is why I believed in the magic (Probably longer than I should have) but it is all thanks to my amazing parents.

My house celebrated both Christmas and Chanukah. Even when my parents split up, even when I learned the truth, part of me always held onto the wonderment of the Holidays.

When my beautiful niece and nephew were at that magical age, I got to shake the bells while my dad yelled, “HO HO HO” when they would visit for Christmas. Seeing their wonderment made the Holiday magic alive again.

That is what I love most about this time of year. The magic. Real or not, there is magic in family. There is magic in love and there is happiness in the fairytale of it all.

Here is to a wonderful Holiday season. I hope yours is filled with magic and above all, love.

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As 2016 comes to a close, have you found yourself in a panic of the lingering items on your to-do list? Well, I am hoping I have caught you pre-meltdown because I have a few things that I have found helpful that I think you may like as well!

Get Organized!

How do you run your invoices, payment tracking, responses to inquiries, customize proposals and get those important pieces of your business handled? Do you find yourself trying to do it all alone? If you are trying to manage all of this on your own, then stop. trust me, don’t do that to yourself. That only ends in runny mascara and drinking too much wine.

I want to talk about Honeybook, they help you simplify and manage your business like a champ. They reached out to me a couple of years ago and let me tell you, it has saved me hours and not only that, they are amazing people to work with. Honeybook is a key element to how I run my business and without them, I would be lost. Right now Honeybook is offering an amazing deal until December 31st. You can get a LIFETIME membership (That is forever people!) for $400.00 which let me tell you, is worth EVERY PENNY.

For this deal, go to http://share.honeybook.com/fQRvj and fill out your info to learn more about what Honeybook can offer your business.

Track Your Progress.

Being able to evaluate where you are and where you are wanting to go is incredibly important to setting yourself up for success. Later in January I will be offering PDF documents through theargusimage.com to help you stay on top of your goals, tasks, publications and allowing you to be mindful of the progress you are making. For now, before December 31st, make a list of everything you want to accomplish in 2017 and what you have accomplished (or may still be working on) for 2016.  This way you can pinpoint where you are at and what you still need to do. Alleviating some of the stress going into the new year and not knowing what to prioritize.

Be Positive.

Take a deep breath and smile. YOU ARE AMAZING so don’t be discouraged and remember to continue to believe in yourself.


Are you Ready for 2017?


 

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This is an amazing story about love, friendship and football…

Jenn found me on The Knot and wanted to meet with me to discuss her wedding and engagement session, so I met her at a local coffee shop and we ended up discussing not only her photography but a plethora of other topics. Needless to say, we instantly clicked.

That banter continued throughout their engagement session and all the way to the present. Jenn and I became great friends throughout her wedding planning and I am so lucky that she contacted me that day.

Jenn and Scott are both HUGE English Premier League fans. Scott likes Liverpool, Jenn likes Newcastle, normally a recipe for some fighting but for them it just adds to the fun of it all. Jenn met Scott at a local pub called the Crown and Anchor briefly one day and then after many months ran into one another again. The second time they met, Scott asked her for a “cheeky Kiss” to which of course, she said yes to. After that first kiss, Scott walked over to his best friend and said, “I am going to marry that girl one day.”

The day before they were going to depart for England, they went to Moonshadows in Malibu for dinner. Scott told Jenn he wanted to move closer to the water to get a video of the sunset. As he was trying to distract her whilst “filming” the ocean on his phone, two of his best friends snuck up behind them with a guitar and maracas in hand and started to sing, “Something” by The Beatles, one of Jen’s all time favorite bands. While they played, Scott got down on one knee to propose.

Their wedding had a vintage fairytale feeling to it. They held it at The Oak Room at Calamigos Ranch, amongst the large waterfall and beautiful hanging chandeliers. They had hand painted décor inside with colors of Mint (Jen’s Favorite color) and coral throughout the room and desert table. She kept her flowers simple with baby’s breath and wore a stunning princess inspired dress.

Of course, because of Jens love for The Beatles and because of how Scott proposed, His two best friends pulled out their maracas and guitar and played, “Something” for their first dance. On all of the tables, Jenn had hand designed key chains that read, “All You Need Is Love” at every place setting to tie in their story.

Congratulations Jenn and Scott! May your fairytale continue for all of the years to come!


Whimsical Vintage Fairytale Wedding


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Vendors

Venue: The Oaks Room
Flowers: Yamaguchi Nursery
Cake/Dessert Table: Frost It Cakery
Caterer: Calamigos
Wedding Dress: Sottero & Midgley
Jewellery: Brides Mothers
Mint Shoes: Mojo Moxy
Grooms & Groomsmen Tuxs: Jos A. Bank

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We lucked out with cloudy weather after leaving the slot canyons as we headed straight to Horseshoe Bend. We would have had to wait until sunset when it is more crowded if it had not been cloudy. If you know my photographic style, then you know I love the emotiveness that gray skies provide, I was beyond happy.

As you walk down the path to Horseshoe bend and approach the cliff, you start to feel incredibly small. The cliff face is not protected by any barriers and you can literally go right to its edge.  That is if you are crazy enough to do so (Christian, I am talking to you!). Our male model did this over and over giving us all minor strokes, ha ha! I am way too scared of heights to be that brave!

This was our last location of our photoshoot and being so, it was one of my favorite locations. Not because our journey was almost over but because it brought our team together as we reflected on our adventure amongst this beautiful landscape.

I am especially grateful for this group of INCREDIBLY talented individuals. I am beyond excited to get to work with them again and to be able to have made some new friends along the way.

The thing about this trip that I am most thankful for is that it is the first of many new adventures coming in 2017.

If you want to stay up to date with my future adventures, (So far I have Oregon, Washington State, Canada and Iceland in the making!) please be sure to subscribe. I would love to have you join me on my next journey!


Intimate Outdoor Arizona Adventure Horseshoe Bend


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Vendors

Coordinator: Deanna Nash
Video: Jairo Britto
Model Bride: Roxanne Morrison
Model Groom: Christian Aragon
Dress Designer: Chantel Lauren
Braclette and Rings: Onata Jewelry
Necklace: Jana Conner
Hair and Makeup: Amanda Kositzky
Tux and Groom’s Shoes: Friar Tux
Florals: Laceroots
Rentals: Found Vintage Rentals
All Agate and Geode Pieces: HelloPosh
Permits: Navajo Nation Parks
Stationery & Invitations: Momental Designs
Photography: The Argus Image

To see the other locations from Noah and Olivia’s Intimate Outdoor Arizona Adventure:
Little Colorado River click here
Slot Canyons click here

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In order to avoid the masses of tourists and to have the canyon to ourselves for as long as possible, we got up at 5am. Like a pack of zombies (albeit, very determined zombies) we started on hair and makeup, ate breakfast and were out the door by 6am to begin the next day of our adventure. Think of us like Hobbits… very tall and tired Hobbits.

Thanks to Adventurous Antelope Canyon Photo Tours, we were able to lock in a private guided tour throughout the slot canyons. This included Owl, Rattlesnake and the most popular of all, Upper Antelope canyon.

This was a once in a lifetime sort of experience. I cannot quite describe how amazing it was but I am hoping my photos will do them justice. We got in the van with Roman, who was our guide for the day and we ventured to our first stop, Upper Antelope Canyon.

From the entrance all the way throughout, it was strikingly beautiful. As we made our way through the canyon I think we must have looked like hunched over cave men with our jaws to the floor (As it was jaw droppingly beautiful!). There is nothing I could say that would quite describe the beauty of this place. Carved from the floods, the smooth walls of the canyon that shot up overhead with bits of light shining through, was proof to the magnificence of Mother Nature.

We then ventured to Rattlesnake which is wider, more open and a much shorter canyon than Antelope. It was given its name by the Navajo people because if you view it from above, it looks like a giant rattlesnake. We snapped a few photos there and ventured to my other favorite slot canyon, Owl.

Owl canyon is unique because of its wide and open space but yet it still feels very quiet and intimate. The Owls live up in the cracks of the canyon and we were fortunate enough to see a pair of them nestled in their home above us. Unfortunately, I was not able to snap any photos of these beauties but if you ever get the chance to visit here, be sure to look up as you will most likely see them throughout this canyon.

We finished the slot canyons feeling elated and filled with a sense of wonderment. We then ventured to our next location, Horseshoe Bend, which I will be posting as part three of our journey next week.

Thank you to Lionel of Adventurous Antelope Canyon Photo Tours for giving us this amazing opportunity and collaborating with us on what will always be an unforgettable day.


Intimate Outdoor Arizona Adventure | Slot Canyons


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Vendors

Coordinator: Deanna Nash
Tour Guide: Adventurous Antelope Canyon Tours
Video: Jairo Britto
Model Bride: Roxanne Morrison
Model Groom: Christian Aragon
Dress Designer: Chantel Lauren
Bracelet and Rings: Onata Jewelry
Necklace: Jana Conner
Hair and Makeup: Amanda Kositzky
Tux and Groom’s Shoes: Friar Tux
Florals: Laceroots
Rentals: Found Vintage Rentals
Seat Covers and Hand Dyed Napkins: Taftyli
All Agate and Geode Pieces: HelloPosh
Permits: Navajo Nation Parks
Cake: Kick Ass Kakes
Stationery & Invitations: Momental Designs
Photography: The Argus Image

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