RJ & Lyric ~ August 26, 2017

RJ and Lyric tied the knot on a gorgeous sunny day in late August at Pine Ridge Bible Camp, where they had both worked together as counselors.  All but one of their bridal party had also either attended Pine Ridge or worked there as a counselor, so this venue had special meaning for all involved.  The couple opted to do a first look before the ceremony, and the camp had the perfect secluded spot to pull it off in where RJ could walk around and not see Lyric until the very last minute as he rounded a natural screen of ornamental grasses.  After the couple had a chance to spend a few precious moments alone together, the entire group enjoyed the warm sun and gorgeous camp grounds as we meandered around photographing the family and the wedding party.

Lyric and RJ’s ceremony began at precisely 6:26 in the afternoon.  The numbers six and twenty-six have special meaning to the couple – their first conversation when they considered taking their friendship to the next level occurred on April 26, their first actual date on May 6, their engagement on November 26, and now their wedding vows would occur on August 26th!

These two have the most joyful, Godly spirits and their elation was contagious on their long-awaited day.  I’m so thankful that I have had the pleasure of getting to know them better and of being asked to capture their beautiful day!

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An Intimate Lakeside Wedding

Thomas and Jessica are married!  Their special day took place at a private lake house in the Canadian Lakes region of Michigan, and this particular stunning piece of architecture sat on its own private peninsula.  The adventurous couple made their love of outdoor activities a part of their ceremony as they kept their guests waiting and wondering while they sneaked around the back of the peninsula and made their entrance by canoe!  To top it all off, they were escorted by a beautiful white swan who then hung around all day to keep an eye on the festivities.

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The groom’s grandmother even made a gorgeous cake for the couple, crowned with an appropriate canoe cake topper.

Congratulations to the newlyweds!  Here’s to many, many more miles logged together in that canoe of yours!  And watch out for swans…


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Louie Louie

Sweet baby Louie is the newest addition to the Kelley family, and his mom and dad and older siblings love him so much!  He was also the first person to be photographed in my newly redone studio!  Louie was born near the 4th of July, so we started out with some patriotic flair, including one of mommy’s scarves.

This little man looks an awful lot like his daddy, and had the sweetest little baby mohawk ever.

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He was quite the sleepy snoozy little guy, too!

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I can’t wait to watch him grow!

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Safe and snuggly in mama’s arms.


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Family, Friends and a Huge Thunderstorm

I love photography.  I love my family and friends.  And call me crazy, but I LOVE a loud, violent thunderstorm.  The more wind, rain, lightning and thunder, the better!  A few weeks ago, all of these things came together in one awesome evening of adventure.   One of my college friends had contacted me last winter to arrange an extended family portrait session that she was going to give her family members for Christmas.  Now I’m a busy person, and my friends are too, so I hadn’t seen her or her family for a while.  We decided this was a great opportunity to catch up, so we planned a cookout for after the session!  Getting to see her, her husband and kids, her brothers and their families, and her mom and dad was so much fun!  The session took place at a beautiful park not far from their home (Bertha Brock Park), and though we had to fight off the bugs and be careful to look for poison ivy, everyone had a good time!

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Maternity Session with the Healthy Hippie Mama

A few weeks ago I had a great maternity session with my neighbor Tabitha, aka the Healthy Hippie Mama.  She was pregnant with her fourth child, twelve days shy of her due date, and sporting some gorgeous maternity tops from Pink Blush Maternity.  We ventured out to a beautiful local park called the Grand River Ravines for a sunlit session at the golden hour.

These first two shirts are available from Pink Blush and looked great on Tabitha!

After exploring some of the wildflower areas Tabitha changed into this cute peasant top and hippie skirt (not from Pink Blush) that showed off her newly done henna tattoo by artist Amanda Joy at Happy Henna.

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The light was fading quickly by this point but we didn’t want to miss out on the old covered bridge down by the Grand River, so we carefully made our way down the rather steep trail to the riverside and captured some shots of the third and final Pink Blush top, a gorgeous royal blue tunic.

This hippie mama is stunning!

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A week after her session, baby number four arrived… a happy, healthy BOY!  Stay tuned for photos from his newborn session!

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Look Who’s Two!

One of my favorite little pig-tailed girlies turned two a little while ago, and I got to photograph her for the fifth time!  Well, fourth if you don’t count the maternity session, but she was technically in those photos.  For this session her mom and I decided to try a couple “fun” shots…

First off was a floral swing.  Emma’s dad is quite handy (well, actually her mom is too), so he made a swing to use for the session, which turned out great!

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Emma has always been full of spunk, but her personality was really showing itself with all her adorable little expressions during the session.

This family is so lovable!  Too bad Hank and Earl, the family dachshunds, are too short to show up in this shot.

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She’s obviously got daddy wrapped around her finger…

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We thought it would be fun to try a milk bath, too.  What a beautiful little girl!

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Until next time, Emma!

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Baby Amaya

So I’ve taken a loooooong hiatus from blogging, of which I’m not proud but certainly not surprised.  Writing, after all, is definitely not my forte.  I really don’t even like it – but here I go, I’m really going to attempt to start blogging again this year now that we are already into the fourth month of the year.

Amaya Inez is a beautiful little baby girl who was recently born to a former coworker and friend of mine.  Being near Easter, and also wanting to try blue with a little girl, I thought I’d try something new with three week old Amaya.

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She looks so sweet giving Peter Rabbit some love!

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Blue is really quite precious on little girls, too.

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Mama brought a little two-piece crocheted outfit to the session but baby had other plans and did not want to be unwrapped, so we settled on just the hat.

I love baby toes!

I also had a new prop I thought I’d try with Amaya – I love how it turned out!

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More Furry Purries

HSWM has been low on cats recently which means this is the first shelter blog post I’ve done in a while.  Their numbers are back up again so if you would like to get your own furry purry visit them!


These two cuties are Bonnie (top) and Clyde.  These partners in crime are about five years old, Bonnie is a spayed female and Clyde is a neutered male.

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Currently sharing a bunk with Bonnie and Clyde is Polly, a 1 1/2 year old brown tabby cat.

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These three felines are also bunk mates in another of the awesome Bissell cat enrichment rooms.  Purrlie Mae (top) is a 13 year old grey tiger striped female, Shadow (middle) is a 12 year old male, and Lucy is an 11 year old calico female.  All three are part of the Silver Paws club, which means their adoption fee will be waived due to being over 7 years of age.

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This is Oliver.  He is a very friendly one year old brown and black tabby male who is looking for a home!


Regulus is a handsome black and white male who only has three legs.  He is very sociable and doesn’t let his lack of a leg slow him down!

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Angel is 9 and is a gorgeous white female with one blue and one green eye.  She was curled up nice and cozy in her little cat tent and didn’t want to come out, but was willing to at least look my way for some photos.

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Here are two more sweet female cats hoping to get adopted soon.  Missy is pictured top and is a stunning white and cream ten year old.  Mama Girl is a two year old grey tabby.

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Dingodile ( top) has an odd name but is a friendly boy.  He is a four year old brown tabby.  Fiona (bottom) is a two year old ginger girl.


Last but not least is Trudy, a three year gal who is just up for adoption starting tomorrow.

Check out the Humane Society of West Michigan this week to see all of these cats and others.  There are also lots of dogs there right now if you are in want of furry friend to take on walks and throw frisbees for.

New Year, New Kitty

After skipping Christmas weekend to spend time with my family, I headed back to the Humane Society of West Michigan to photograph some of the newcomer cats.  If it is in your plans for 2016 to add a furry friend to your home, why not visit HSWM?  They have lots of dogs and cats waiting for homes.

Rocky Road

This is Rocky Road, a two year old brown and black tabby male.  He is very friendly and reminds me of a lynx with his black-tipped ears.


Pie is a six year old brown and black tabby male who was in the same room with Rocky Road.  The shelter employees must have had a sweet tooth when they were naming these guys!  Pie has a very svelte, angular face that gives him a unique look.  He was quite content to hang out in his little kittie hammock.

Kit Kat

Rounding out the assortment of cats with dessert-themed names is Kit Kat.  She is a three year old black, orange and white girl who has already been declawed on her front feet.


This is Bubba, an adorable little orange boy who is about four years old.  He reminds me of my cat Fresno who is also a friendly orange tabby.  I have had several vets tell me that friendliness is an orange cat trait, although I haven’t seen any studies that back this up.


Here is another orange tabby boy who is also quite the friendly kitty.  His name is Oliver and he is a one year old domestic medium haired.

Roger Jr

Roger Jr. is a sleek two year old black cat who is hoping to find a home really soon!  He is just the slightest bit shy but also very friendly and enjoyed coming through the opening from the other side of his cubby to get some lovin’.


Darjeeling is a grey and white female who is about eight years old.  She is a little intimidated by her new surroundings and doesn’t understand what an almost-senior gal like herself is doing here instead of curled up on someone’s nice warm lap.


Noodles is a two year old black and brown tabby girl who is new to the shelter but is hoping to find a new home instead!


Meet George.  He is a gorgeous grey and cream colored domestic medium haired boy.  He is about two years old.

All of these cats and a bunch more would love for you to come visit them and take one of them home!

Millions of Cats, Trillions of Cats

When I was a kid I had a book called Millions of Cats that was about a little old man and a little old women who were looking for a cat and found millions instead who ended up duking it out to see who would go home with them.  In the end only one little kitten was left and he was the lucky one to go home with the man and woman.  Seeing all of the kitties come parading through the shelter reminded me of that book, which I still own and read to my daughter now.

Here are a few more cats from the shelter.  Please visit them at the Humane Society for West Michigan.  They may not get a new home in time for Christmas but hopefully will for the New Year!


Cadence is about 8 years old and is a beautiful little black and brown female tabby.  She is very friendly and looking for a home!

Gypsy is also about 8 and is a female black cat who is very sweet.  Don’t believe that old superstition about black cats either – I had one who lived to be almost 18 years old and he was a great cat and never brought me any bad luck!


Ava is a sweet black and white 12 year old female who is camping out at the Chowhound petstore right now hoping to find some love!  The white fur makes an interesting diamond pattern on her face.



Cesar is an 8 year old male who was quite interested in my lighting setup. He is a black and brown tabby.


Abby is a cautious but very sweet kitty who has been at HSWM at least since I started taking photos there a couple of weeks ago.  I hope she finds a home soon, and so does she!  Abby is around 12 years old.


Clause was hoping to get a new home in time to meet her namesake when he drops presents off in a couple days, but will patiently wait for her family instead!  She is only about a year old and is a striking black cat.

Please don’t forget to check out HSWM or your local shelter if you are not in the West Michigan area if you are looking for a new furry friend!