Viewing entries in


Facing Your Fears

I am not a great lover of heights.  I don't mind them but I don't go out of my way to find them.  Just like snakes.  So when Zach's cousin said she wanted to take us rock climbing I was a little skeptical.  And by skeptical I mean nauseous. (For more on our visit to Los Alamos check out here!)

I am a great believer in facing you fears.  I don't like for fear to have control over me.  Period.  I don't like for it to dictate what I do or don't do.  Honestly, I was a feeling a little ashamed at how nervous I was about doing this.  I've been sky diving!  I've jumped off bridges!  Why would climbing a rock freak me out?  When I got down deep to it is was because after having a baby I feel like I have lost part of my athletic self--my daredevil self.  I was worried I physically would embarrass myself.  I was worried that I was being a bad mother by taking a risk.  Worry is just fear whispering to you. 

Lucky for me Zach's cousin Christie is a badass.  She's a mother of five, survivor, and rock climbing instructor.  If she could do it, I had to at least try it.  And I am so glad I did.

The truth is that by the end of the day Zach and I both had fallen a little in love with rock climbing.  For him, I believe it was figuring out the puzzle of where to go next, keeping your mind focused, and being outside.  For me it was facing that fear each moment, being in such beauty, and trusting yourself to make it happen. 


In my experience it always pays off to face your fears.  Whether that is fear of change, fear of loss, fear of heights, snakes, spiders, infestations, whales, or the fear of being alone.  We all have one that makes a nest inside our heart and minds.  Take that fear out, set it on fire, and go live.


1 Comment


Being a Mom is hard.  People say that to you when you become pregnant.  You believe it but you don't fully understand.  Women will talk about the pains of childbirth, the early sleepless nights, the terrible twos, teething, sickness, fatigue.  They will share their stories.  Which we all need. We need these stores.  We NEED to talk about all of this.  We rarely talk about ourselves though.  We rarely discuss the loneliness, the guilt, the boredom, or even the yearning for a previous life.

I wasn't in love with my daughter.  Not at first.  Everyone tells you that when a baby is born it will change your life.  That you can never imagine loving something more.  I cried big hot tears when they first put her on my chest.  Tears of relief and exhaustion.  I knew that she was mine.  That I wanted to protect her, care for her, and do what was best for her.  But I also didn't know her.  Our love affair was a slow one.  Getting to know each other.  Her revealing her brilliant shining personality one small moment at a time.  And then one day there it was.  That unimaginable love.  The kind that brings tears back when I think of anything happening to her.  I had a lot of guilt at first about not being bonded with her.  People asked if I just couldn't get enough of her.  If I just wanted her with me all the time.  Nope.  I needed space.  I needed to be me without being a Mom. 

These days its hard to find space in a small camper with a one year old.  She sleeps in the same room as us.  She cries, she snores, she coos--she wakes up really damn early.  As a Mom, Photographer, Navigator, Wife, and Researcher I'm still trying to find the balance in myself. And we need to talk about that.  There are days I just want to be one thing.  I just want to be a photographer that day.  Or I just want to be a tourist.  Or I just want to be a lover.  It is easy to get overwhelmed by all the roles and demands.  To pine for a simpler time instead of being present in this whirlwind.  Right now there are no babysitters.  All of my roles are full on all the time and I would be lying if I said it wasn't exhausting. 

But its also beautiful.  There is a lot of living in my life right now.  I get to experience a beautiful world that I shamefully haven't seen before.  I get to roam streets and woods and beaches and swamps.  I wash our daughter under the full moon.  I sing her to sleep amidst the background of crickets, tree frogs, and cicadas.  I read.  I photograph what is before me.  I talk about what is whispering to my soul.  I tell myself the truths I need to know.  It's okay to be overwhelmed.  Live here now.  You are enough.

1 Comment

Brian, Lori, and Wyatt


Brian, Lori, and Wyatt

BLW-Lex-0004 This summer, while in Lexington Virginia on vacation, I headed out on an adventure with my Brother, Sister in Law, and Nephew Wyatt.  We wanted to capture all the awesomeness of Wyatt at two.  So we decided to do a glimpse into a"day in the life" of Wyatt.

I claim Lexington as my hometown.  It's a place where time stands still in a lot of ways.  Kids still walk through downtown when they get off the school bus, people know your name, and there are a million fun little shops like Books & Co...Toys, too! and Sweet Things Ice Cream Shop.  We played with some pretty amazing toys, pet a very scary tiger, ran around in the park, and Wyatt had his very first ice cream cone.  It was an awesome day!  What more can you say?







BLW-Lex-0075 BLW-Lex-0069






BLW-Lex-0110 BLW-Lex-0181





BLW-Lex-0158 BLW-Lex-0152





BLW-Lex-0198 BLW-Lex-0199











Free Engagement Session Finalists

I had so many amazing Brides at the Pink Bridal show that I just could not choose a winner for the Free Engagement/Bridal Session contest!  So this year I decided to leave that up to you, my readers, and the couples families and friends.  I have narrowed it down to three amazing couples and now its up to you to vote!  Vote for your favorite couple to win!  Voting will be open all week and on Friday I will announce the winner!  Don't forget to share this post on Facebook to get more votes.  Good luck! [polldaddy poll=9038850]



Focus on the Details 6.30.15

IMG_5127 copy Continuing my Focus on the Details series today!  This series is meant to help me pay attention to the little details of everyday life and stop to appreciate them. It's so easy to see something and go, "Wow that looks great!" or "that lighting is really nice," and continue on with everyday life.  So without further ado, here are some more details that caught my eye.

IMG_4920 copy

IMG_4939 copy

IMG_4959 copy

IMG_5084 copy



Mother's Day Mini Sessions

Mother's Day Mini Sessions I can hardly believe it!  My first Mother's Day as a Mom!  I can already feel the time slipping by.  Each moment passes way too quickly.  As I was thinking about that this morning I decided to offer a mini session special for all those Mommy's out there who want to capture this special time before it slips by.  Email me today to lock in your  time slot!



Still Moments 4.9.15

blog01 There hasn't been a whole lot of "still moments" around here lately to tell the truth.  But every now and then we get a glimmer of one and hold onto it for dear life.  There is something about having a child that makes you be much more aware of time and its passing.  It can make your stomach churn to realize how much has already gone by, or make you flood with exasperation at how slow the lack of one nap time is going.  Either way you are so much more aware of it coursing through your daily life with an intense ebb and flow.



Ashley & T.J. Get Hitched


I was a little skeptical when Ashley asked me to photograph her wedding.  I sat across from her at Panera looking into her smiling face and had my doubts.  None of them were about her but about me.  I was 8 months pregnant and already felt like I was going to pop.  Her wedding was roughly a month after my due date.  What if it was too soon?  My concern was not for my own well being but what if I could not deliver (as I promise all my clients) my absolute best?  As I looked at Ashley's expectant smile, I knew that I couldn't say no.  Ashley's sweet and understanding personality made it easy to take a chance.  We decided to wing it and I'm so glad we did.


Ashley and T.J. got married on a rainy Saturday in March.  They say that rain on your wedding day is a sign of good luck.  This couple doesn't need the luck. They are amazing together and you can instantly feel not only their love but the love of everyone who attended the ceremony.  There was no doubt that not only did every guest want to be there but they were full of excitement and energy.  This wedding was so full of joy, love, and fun!  The wedding party was amazing and the bride and groom were incredibly laid back.  The wedding was at Sampson's Hollow and the low hanging clouds created a dramatic backdrop against the mountains.  The rain held off just long enough to say I do, and then we headed to the porch for shelter and some family photos.  After the family portraits, Ashley and T.J. said they were game to head out into the rain for some couples time.  I adore clients that are up for adventure and trust me.  I love the way these turned out!  Ashley was absolutely stunning in her dress and her love for T.J. raidiated off of her.  T.J. couldn't take his eyes off of her.

_MG_1828_MG_1849IMG_2047IMG_2077IMG_2118IMG_2128IMG_2122IMG_2149IMG_2158IMG_2177_MG_1895IMG_2233IMG_2240IMG_2217IMG_2222IMG_2276IMG_2334IMG_2424 IMG_2451IMG_2462IMG_2478IMG_2526IMG_2541IMG_2562IMG_2701 IMG_2639 IMG_2630 IMG_2627 IMG_2610 IMG_2606 IMG_2593 IMG_2589 IMG_2587         IMG_2719IMG_2726_MG_1901

Congratulations Ashley and T.J!  Thank you so much for taking a chance on me.  I know you will carry the love from that day with you each and everyday.

Mad Shout Outs:

Vendor: Sampson's Hollow Coordinator: Lesley Livingston Baker: Confectionista's Kitchen Hair/Make-Up: Alchemy Salon



Catherine & Bryan's Wedding

_MG_0353 The first weekend in November it was freakishly cold here in East Tennessee.  There was even snow in the mountains, which is unusual for this time of year.  Despite the cold, Catherine & Bryan got married at Dara's Gardens and had one of the most beautiful fall weddings I have ever experienced.



Catherine's dress was a classic ivory with a beautiful lace jacket over the top.  She looked absolutely stunning!  The dress went perfect with her colors of grey and yellow.





The pictures and ceremony were outside, while the reception was in a heated tent.  I have to give it to this bridal party, despite the unexpected temperature they were all great sports!  Everyone went with the flow and made it for a truly heartfelt day.















After family photos (and a quick hot apple cider break), Bryan, Catherine and I snuck off to take some amazing fall photos on Dara's Garden's property.  I absolutely love the way these turned out!








After the sun went down it was time to go inside and enjoy the party!  I loved the lights in the tent, and all the beautiful succulents Catherine had used as pops of color and table centerpieces.














Catherine and Bryan thank you so much for sharing your beautiful day with me and letting me capture it.  Catherine, I know you and I hit it off from the first meeting and I loved getting to know you!  You have a beautiful spirit and I loved getting to know both of your families better.  Congrats Mr & Mrs!

A special shout out to Amanda Womble for being my amazing assistant that day!  My preggo self couldn't have done it without you!  Thanks for helping me carry gear and braving the cold.




Jodi & Blake's Engagement Session

IMG_8731 copy Fall colors, woods, a pond, pumpkins, and a family owned farm...what's not to love about this engagement session?  Early in October I headed over to Anderson County to Jodi's family farm for an afternoon of fun photos.

IMG_8229-2 copy

I knew after our first meeting, that Jodi and I were going to hit it off.  Jodi is sweet and makes everyone around her comfortable.  So when the time came,  the day of the shoot, to meet Blake I knew he would be the same.  Blake has a contagious smile and between these two we just kept laughing all day.

IMG_8274 copy

IMG_8278 copy

IMG_8279 copy

IMG_8280 copy

IMG_8330-2 copy


I loved that these two chose to be adventurous and get out on the pond in the boat.  Even if it did have a small (tiny), leak in it.  The whole day they were up for anything which is exactly what a photographer wants.

IMG_8268 copy


IMG_8364-2 copy

IMG_8368 copy

IMG_8394 copy


IMG_8463 copy

IMG_8472 copy

IMG_8515 copy

IMG_8532 copy

IMG_8557-2 copy


You can tell that family, history and heritage are all very important to both Jodi and Blake.  Not only did we shoot on the family farm but Blake's family showed up to help out and Jodi's Mom provided a lot of the cute props.  Blake plays in a bluegrass band and you can just tell with both of them that the area is very important to them.



IMG_8568 copy

IMG_8602-2 copy

IMG_8651 copy

IMG_8667-2 copy

IMG_8705 copy

IMG_8779 copy

Jodi and Blake I cannot wait to photograph your wedding next July!  Thanks for being up for anything, even some of the off the wall things I asked you to do.  I felt so comfortable with you both.  Your love and respect for each other is apparent in every photo and I can't wait to experience that 100 fold on your wedding day!